Wednesday, November 4, 2015

2014-15 Layout Progress Report

I can't believe I've been at it for two years now. I must say, I like how the layout is turning out. At this time last year, I updated you on the layout progress and set some goals for the next year. So in that spirit, here's this years progress report:


Yard Tracks: 100% Complete

Industrial Sidings: 50% Complete. All that remains is to lay the track in Gallitzin. The Johnstown sidings and Southfork Branch are in.


Last year I set a goal of completing Horseshoe Curve and the Altoona Shop complex. I'd say Horseshoe is about 95% complete and the Altoona Shop about 75% complete.


Main Lines, Altoona Yard, Southfork Branch and Johnstown Industry sidings 100% Complete

Last year I also set a goal of installing additional cabs for operation. As you well know, I decided to dump cab control in favor of DCC, rendering last year's goal a mute point. So on that note...

DCC Conversion:

System Installation: 95% Complete. I would like to add additional UP5 panels at various points around the layout and eventually go wireless.

Locomotive Conversion: This depends on the fleet.

Pennsy Fleet: About 70% complete. All road locomotives have decoders. the switch engines still require them.

Conrail Fleet: 0% Complete. These are older locomotives that are hard to convert.

Norfolk Southern Fleet: 80% Complete, all but three locomotives equipped.

Goals for Next Year:

My primary focus for the forseeable future will be on Gallitzin. I'm confining the area of focus to between the Western Portals of the tunnels and the Route 53 overpass. I would like to have all structures in place, lighted and general topology in place by this time next year.

I would also like to get on with the DCC conversion and get the rest of the fleet equipped as time, money and patience allow. I also want to acquire more throttle.

Another goal I have is to finally start planning the operating scheme of the railroad. As mentioned elsewhere in this blog, realistic operation and the ability to host operating sessions were two of the original design goals. 

So that's about it for this year's progress report. Let's see how things shake out over the next 12 months.

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