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Saturday, July 6, 2013

Work & Bad Order Cards

I've been cleaning up and organizing the RR and the RR rooms.  It occurred to me that you might be interested in the cards that I use to keep track of work problems on the RR and issues with rolling stock.  While I have only used these for my own use, I plan to place them around the layout for operator use.

I use Work and Bad Order Cards.  There are three types.
1. MOW Work Order Form - This is for issues with track, electrical, turnouts, signals, etc.
2. Locomotive Bad Order Form - This is obviously for issues with locomotives
3. Rolling Stock Bad Order Form - This is for all other rolling stock issues

I made these out of 8x11.5 yellow card stock, thick, but not too thick it will hang-up in the printer.  I print them sideways and can get three to a page from top to bottom. They are yellow so they stand out from other documents.  I have a hanger that I hang them on at the workbench.

Here are a couple photos.  The first shows the front and back of one Form.  The second photo shows the front of the other two forms, the back of all  three are the same and I use the back for notes, dates, etc.  I either hang on to the card in case the issue is not resolved, or if something happens again in the near future.  Or, I can just throw it away.  You can file them too if you want.  I'm working on getting as paperless as I can, so I'll probably figure out someway to file these in my Evernote files.

Here are the photos.  Have fun!
Frank Kenny

Front and back of the MOW Form

Front of the Locomotive and Rolling Stock Forms   

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Updates to the Traffic Center Routing Panel & a Link

The last couple of times we've run trains we've used the new Traffic Center Routing Panel.  This panel has always confused me so I know it has to confuse the operators.

When we created the panel it made sense.  However, in normal use, it was very confusing...and it still may be!  We'll have to test it and see.  Click here,  Traffic Center Route Panel, to see the panel that I recreated.    A major change was to put the Upper and Lower level on top and bottom respectively, and arranged Arrival and Departure from left to right.  That helped clarity a lot.  I also highlighted YERMO and italicized the Passthru tracks for clarity too.  There were also a number of smaller issues that I changed, such as adding the Steam and MOW tracks and routings for them.

I printed the sheet and attached it to a piece of cardboard for stability and temporarily attached it to the layout fascia both inside and outside of the TC area so no matter where you stand, you can see the board.  I create all control panels on paper temporarily until we use them a few times and I'm sure that it is what I want.  After that works for a bit, I will make a permanent panel.

One additional addition I am considering is an LED for each track, showing occupancy.  This will require the running of MORE wires, which I love to do...NOT...I'd rather eat hair!  LOL.  Well, that's a project for another day and another post.