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Thread: Railyard - "Fiddle" Yard?

  1. #1
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    Question Railyard - "Fiddle" Yard?

    The "traditional" railyard does not seem suited to train makeup. Long and narrow, where short and fat seems better for train makeup???
    Dick near Pittsburgh, Pa., i7-- 4.0ghz, 16gb memory, RTX3070 8gb video card. 117009 117669.

  2. #2
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    To some degree, I suppose so, but it may depend on how long the finished train is going to be. Ultimately you need to come off one track to the mainline.
    "When the power of love overcomes the love of power then the world will know peace." Jimi Hendrix

  3. #3
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    I am a "short train person". For now I will just add crossovers to the main yard and try the "fiddle" later. THANKS
    Dick near Pittsburgh, Pa., i7-- 4.0ghz, 16gb memory, RTX3070 8gb video card. 117009 117669.

  4. #4
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    Maybe it would help to remember that in the old days (40 years or more) rolling stock was not sorted by the customer destination but by train. What does that mean?

    You are yardmaster at a yard and everyday there are 2 regularly scheduled trains that make deliveries and pickups from local industries. An eastbound local and a westbound local. When the through freight train drops off a string of cars they are already sorted by customer. So the yardmaster just puts the ones that go east on one track and the others that go west on another track. Now while doing this he also positions them in the right order based upon which industries the train will get to first. This makes the train crew's job easier. When it's time for the local trains to start they just couple up and off they go.

    When the locals return they will have pickups. Some cars are empty and are placed on the empty car tracks. The loaded cars are again sorted by train. If they are outbound then they are sorted for either the eastbound through freight or the westbound through freight trains. If they can be delivered by one of the locals then they are sorted the same as above.

    This process can be scaled up of course. But you are still sorting by train not by customer.

  5. #5
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    Default Yard Work

    Sorry for the late THANK YOU... After several years of modifying "to taste" various routes I have settled on one route to begin "running a railroad". I view it from two perspectives - customer needs and cost. Otherwise with a few clicks I could build a track direct to every customer - the Elon Musk approach. I assume this applies to a yard. Take what the route builder gives you and work with it. Unless it is under-designed your challenge is schedules, available cars/engines/customers and the tracks.

    This brings up a question - Does a "real" yard have several cross-overs? Or, does a switcher spend time going to the end of the yard to get to a different track? The route I have currently "adopted" has a few crossovers within the yard but there seems to be too much time wasted on travel to the end just to get to an adjacent track.

    Another question - when other roads feed or pickup cars is that done within the yard or are there always designated areas of tracks setup for car exchange?

    Finally, is there any material/source that answers these queries? Something like "Yard Work For Simpletons"

    Dick
    Dick near Pittsburgh, Pa., i7-- 4.0ghz, 16gb memory, RTX3070 8gb video card. 117009 117669.

  6. #6
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    I use real-life examples to lay out yards by looking at maps and aerial photos. Some yards are laid out as incoming and outgoing yards. Anything leaving the yard goes on specific tracks while trains entering the yard go into another adjacent yard. The tracks come down to a bowl-shaped point where the lead track enters, and this allows the trains to choose which side they're supposed to go to. Sometimes, there are some crossovers between the various straight tracks, but that can hinder the length of the consists in the yards because the trains need to stay clear of the crossovers.

    When switching the trains, I've noticed two or more switchers working the yard with one or two stationed at one end and a similar number at the other to accommodate the trains. This is a lot more efficient than having a single switcher run the length of the yard to go from one end to the other to handle the pushing and pulling of the trains.
    John
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  7. #7
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    @JCitron
    When switching the trains, I've noticed two or more switchers working the yard with one or two stationed at one end and a similar number at the other to accommodate the trains. This is a lot more efficient than having a single switcher run the length of the yard to go from one end to the other to handle the pushing and pulling of the trains.

    Many yards have tracks at both ends, often called "drill tracks". These tracks are where the switchers operate. For most actual model railroads, it is difficult to find enough space to have a double ended fiddle yard with the drill tracks. Often the drill tracks will curve away from the yards, at a corner along the adjacent walls.
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    Last edited by wreeder; December 11th, 2022 at 06:03 PM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by pitkin View Post
    @JCitron
    When switching the trains, I've noticed two or more switchers working the yard with one or two stationed at one end and a similar number at the other to accommodate the trains. This is a lot more efficient than having a single switcher run the length of the yard to go from one end to the other to handle the pushing and pulling of the trains.

    Many yards have tracks at both ends, often called "drill tracks". These tracks are where the switchers operate. For most actual model railroads, it is difficult to find enough space to have a double ended fiddle yard with the drill tracks. Often the drill tracks will curve away from the yards, at a corner along the adjacent walls.
    Thank you for the actual terminology for those tracks. For a physical model railroad, this is nearly impossible to build, but for us we have nearly all the real estate we need and then some.
    John
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