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What's Next? 5/13/09


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#21 laming

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 06:45 PM

Hi Again batt!

Oh well for the dynamic track.

I have been piddlin' in the RE tonight and tentatively laying track south along the Mulberry River watercourse. Passed a FANTASTIC "holler" that is BEGGING for a Shay powered lumber line shooting up it.

BUT... I'm having a devil of a time getting the terrain to match better in DEMEX. Sometimes when you add terrain to a route at a later time, it doesn't always match up with the existing terrain. So you have to shift via DEMEX offest feature. Trouble is... I can't seem to find offset figures that do the trick. Trying to hand shape to fit isn't a good solution at one of these situations... the terrain seems to "pop" and you can have a stubborn spillover that resists being smoothed.

Anyrate...

You raise an interesting point about what happens to the AR&N. Yours truly gave this some thought a LOOOOONG time ago. I think I have a solution. We shall see! biggrin.gif

#22 laming

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 08:16 PM

FINALLY got those two pesky tiles to line up acceptably!!!

Now I have TWO optional "hollers" that could be exploited for a Shay powered lumber line!

#23 AFracer40m

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 09:10 PM

Wonderful Andre, I just purchased the Ozark Northern, Wow! Great work as always, your A&O sub is still one of my all time favorite payware routes to run. Im really interested in seeing the next project you do or release.

You'll have another purchase from me biggrin.gif

#24 laming

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Posted 23 May 2009 - 06:33 AM

Thanks Mark for the generous compliments. I'm very glad you're still enjoying the A&O. My lands, has it been THAT long ago since I released it????

I can assure you fella's that if I get anything finished enough to share, I fully intend to do so.

Now, as for interested in seeing what the next route will be... so am I! rolleyes.gif (I even surprise myself!)

For now, I'm enjoying tinkering with the Ozark Northern and extending it southward. While doing so, I am amassing data and information to take a serious look at a narrow gauge route I'm interested in... but that may be a while. In the meantime, I'm having a bunch of fun "discovering" what the Ozark Northern would have looked like heading for Ozark, Arkansas.

Though the scenery isn't nearly as "dramatic" as that climb up to Fly Gap... it is really neat. Having to follow the Mulberry River watercourse to find a place to climb out has resulted in some flowling curves and what have you. Very little gradient. Relaxing... pleasant to run. As the train chuffs along, it's enjoyable to hang your head out the cab window and take a gander up the various hollows you pass by. Cool enough with raw terrain... it will be even better when some scenery and terrtex start taking shape.

Oh, I did find a place to exit of course. The rails have to bend around a major (and tight) horseshoe bend to accomplish the exit. Maybe name that curve "The Corkscew"? From there is upgrade... AGAIN! biggrin.gif Seeing as the town of Jethro will be up on top... is this Jethro Hill?

There are some very colorful ACTUAL names and places the survey stakes pass thorugh or by.

How'bout:

Jethro
Dutchman Hollow
Possom Trot
Big Foot Hollow (Wonder if there was a Big Foot legend in 1893?)
Big Eddy Hollow (Where the logging line will be.)
Bunce Gap (Up on top of the mountain that the logging line will exploit.)
White Oak
Burrell Spring
Rock Creek

Welp... back to explore and maybe lay some more track!

Here's an AE screen grab to illustrate....

Attached Files



#25 AFracer40m

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Posted 23 May 2009 - 07:04 AM

Fascinating Andre, I just got done running the intro activities for the Ozark Northern and now just bought the HLW steam pack from the site. Once again I want to thank you guys for this beautiful package!

Far as the A&O sub I bought that back in January of 2005 when you first released it! Still run it daily, when I'm home from work and not on the road.

#26 S. Weaver

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 07:01 AM

QUOTE(AFracer40m @ May 23 2009, 9:45 AM) View Post

... Still run it daily, when I'm home from work and not on the road.


Whoa, dude, that's commitment! Andre, what say you make him a Road Foreman?

#27 laming

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 11:48 AM

Sounds good to me, Steve!



#28 wmghobbs

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 01:53 PM

Andre,
Looking at your list of possible extensions for the route, I'm suprized that you have failed to include Piney Ridge, home of the Jot 'em Down Store. For shame.
Bill

#29 laming

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 01:57 PM

Hi Bill!

Pine Ridge was/is down by Mena... a fur piece from the ON's region. FWIW: I've seen the store at Pine Ridge recently... it's now a museum as I recall! However, the "feel" was there... I should'a stopped and snapped a pic. Oh well... "someday". rolleyes.gif

#30 steamed

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Posted 31 May 2009 - 07:09 AM

Andre, this is great. I am glad you are enjoying yourself. It's nice to be able to dabble without the pressure of a commitment !!

I am really enjoying the O.N. route; it far exceeded my expectations.

#31 zhilton

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Posted 31 May 2009 - 09:48 AM

QUOTE(laming @ May 25 2009, 2:38 PM) View Post

Hi Bill!

Pine Ridge was/is down by Mena... a fur piece from the ON's region. FWIW: I've seen the store at Pine Ridge recently... it's now a museum as I recall! However, the "feel" was there... I should'a stopped and snapped a pic. Oh well... "someday". rolleyes.gif

Been by Pine Ridge several times myself...though my mood of transportation was allot bitter than a scooter or even a pick up truck. Keep telling myself I'm going to swing in there the next time I'm in the general zip code area, but have yet to do that. Even 60 years later, the radio show is still entertaining.

Going back to the original topic for this thread....I guess a Western KS/Eastern Colorado CRI&P route is out of the question? Just kidding, that would be a very boring route if you ask me. You have to give an ol' tip of the hat to Rock Island, they had some "interesting" power pretty much their entire diesel era existence.

#32 laming

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Posted 31 May 2009 - 10:42 AM

Zackery!

Good to see you're still a'kickin'!

How's business on your end of the US rail network?

Ours is off, significantly. BUT... I'm fortunate that we have the frac sand business is in Ft. Smith. We're still getting over 40 hours per week... but overall it's not near what it was this time last year. Frankly though, for now I'm glad I'm not doing those long stretches of 55-60 hour weeks in a 108 degree cab.

As a company, we ARE still making money... just not as much as the past few years.

As for the Rock Island in western OK. Well... the trackwork is pretty neat... but boy... are there loooooooong stretches of tangent... and LOTS and LOTS of wide open spaces that need to be filled with "things". But... who knows?

FWIW: I have also been tempted to dabble with a proto-lanced switching route based on the Kansas City West Bottoms area. Loosely replicating the roads that were there... but using the fictional name "Kansas City Belt RR" for the switching line. Circa would likely be late 60's early 70's? Again... who knows??????

steamed:

I'm so glad you're enjoying the ON. Alex Dunn over at OVS is beginning to create additional activities for it. If you're not a member of OVS, you might consider signing up and joining the fun. Alex does nifty activities. FYI, here is a direct link to OVS:

http://or4c.com/OVSTS

Yup... I'm enjoying tinkering with MSTS again. I have all sorts of grand schemes and things... but... the "work" side of creation often stiffles my enthusiasm. Ain't that a bummer. Is there such a thing as Adult Attention Deficit Disorder? wacko.gif

As for "what is happening" on my hard drive as we type:

1. Got rail laid south out of Turners Bend toward Ozark. The main line may be about 4-5 miles away from Ozark. Already down to, and over, Jethro Hill and then down Dutchman Hollow. The rails are at Possom Trot. (These are real location names, btw!) Also have started creating "Ozark Lumber Company" at Big Eddy Hollow (just south of Turners Bend). 5.2% grades, switchbacks, logging camps... big sawmill with an interchange with the Ozark Northern. Been having fun extending the ON. And, if I get reasonably complete with it... looks to be fun to operate.

2. Still REALLY looking over the narrow gauge Colorado Central. I simply love the topography of the region as well as the towns. I've begun to experiement at Forks Creek to see how the railroad elements fit among the NED Seamless terrain that I used. This little potential route project also has me wanting to learn how to build rolling stock for MSTS via the TSM Commercial model builder I use. IF I do this, then it would be mid 1880's so the Georgetown Loop is possible, but I wouldn't have to deal with the 2' gauge Gilpin Tram at Black Hawk and Central City.

(Sigh rolleyes.gif )

So much I want to do... but so little time to play! (And then there's that AADD thing I'm dealing with. blush.gif )

#33 zhilton

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Posted 01 June 2009 - 08:47 AM

QUOTE(laming @ May 31 2009, 11:23 AM) View Post

Zackery!

Good to see you're still a'kickin'!

How's business on your end of the US rail network?

Ours is off, significantly. BUT... I'm fortunate that we have the frac sand business is in Ft. Smith. We're still getting over 40 hours per week... but overall it's not near what it was this time last year. Frankly though, for now I'm glad I'm not doing those long stretches of 55-60 hour weeks in a 108 degree cab.

As a company, we ARE still making money... just not as much as the past few years.

As for the Rock Island in western OK. Well... the trackwork is pretty neat... but boy... are there loooooooong stretches of tangent... and LOTS and LOTS of wide open spaces that need to be filled with "things". But... who knows?

Things are quite over here as well, our sand traffic (masonry grade) has been slow...this time last year every train had a 20-40 cut of sand cars; but so far we're doing well to have a cut of 20 in one of the trains during the week. Hopefully by the end of this month harvest traffic will start to roll and that will bring the train lengths back. It's kind of dis-hearting when your used to 3-4 SD40/SD50 with a 90 to 120 car train each trip; but all your catching are two SD on the head-end of a 30-50 car trains. Yeah you can rocket out of a slow order...but as we both know long trains are soooo much easier to handle to the point you just about don't touch the air most of the trip.

Making money? Depends who you believe...the operations (train) department guys say we have to jump through loops to keep the company/railroad a float; but the Maintenance-in-the-Way (track) guys say they've got more projects than they know what to do with. I figure as long as they keep calling me for trains and the checks don't bounce I'm not too worried...seniority does have it's benefits.

#34 laming

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 03:00 PM

Zack:

Figured it was slow out your way too. Glad that enough is happening so that hours are being worked and thus paychecks are being cashed.


To Any Interested:

Woohoo! Have been fun seeing what the Ozark Northern extention looks like... and (drum roll please)... I'VE REACHED OZARK!

Yup... Ozark is now being developed. In fact, after I post this I will be going in the sim and checking out all the track work with a light engine.

Below you'll see a pic of what is in place thus far. Here's the way things have fell:

Looks like there will be a northbound helper grade immediately out of Ozark. Nowhere near as severe or as long as the climb to Fly Gap... but enough to keep trains too short to be profitable without a helper. At the summit in question, it worked out that a tunnel will be used to pierce the ridge. Other side of the ridge/tunnel are a couple of sidings to be used for meets and/or doubling the hill either direction.

As for Ozark proper:

The Ozark Northern would only access the compact StL&IMS yard to deliver/pick up. They have their own yard where blocking/classifying would be done.

Area 1 will likely be developed with industry spurs alongside the lead track.

Area 2 may/may not have industries along the rails. Likely won't be as there isn't a quickly apparent and convenient way to add spurs.

Area 3 may become the location of a small zinc smelter. Have to wait and see.

Area 4 is likely going to become the engine service area/whatever.

Note the ON track leading to the proposed riverfront wharf area crosses the StL&IMS at grade. This was done to alleviate pathing complications for StL&IMS AI traffic. Also note that you can switch the ON's industrial areas without interfering with the StL&IMS main line. Again, this was done so that all kinds of AI traffic can pass by on the StL&IMS while one goes about the switching the various locations in Ozark. That ought to be some fun eye candy!

There are still many opportunities to exploit in/around Ozark proper... so it's all a matter of spending my tile count wisely!

Welp... all for now!

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#35 batt

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 03:42 PM

Looks great Andre. Congrats on laying steel into Ozark.

Question:

Will there be plenty of places of ill repute (saloons, bordellos, gambling parlors, etc.) along "Front Street"? laugh.gif

Seems like with all those miners, loggers, railroaders, and boatmen running around there; somebody could make a lot of money devil.gif .

#36 laming

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 04:47 PM

LOL! laugh.gif

A virtual Sin City it will be! devil.gif

#37 batt

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 07:18 PM

Yee-ah! I can hear the music emanating from down there already laugh.gif



#38 neilmilroy

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 06:00 AM

Whatever else you do,Andre, please find the time to tack on a relict spur line off the main, near Jethro perhaps, leading to some abandoned site and ending with a run-around, that just happens to be beside a lake fed by a trout stream. The ON staff's annual fishin' derby needs a home, and scouts come from all over for a week long powwow. The company president and family and friends use it for "getaways" too. Lots of trees around, and maybe a few deer. Two or three tents, and its complete. Just a thought, but it very much appeals to me. smile.gif

#39 laming

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 05:34 PM

If you read the "Outta' The Office" thread, you know that I have just returned from a fantastic biking journey. Wow.

BUT...

I'm home now... and time to settle back into "life" (i.e. work, responsibilities, work)... SOOOOO...
it's also time to get back to some rest and relaxation via V scale!

When we last left this thread... I was enjoying extending the Ozark Northern. (The mainline rails are essentially finished, as well as the track in the town of Ozark and other intermediate places. The Ozark Logging line was also well underway.)

Also being considered was the Colorado Central circa 1884. (Terrain DEM'd via NED Seamless. Distant mountains created. Some preliminary "exploratory" track laid, etc.)

LAST, but not least, I was toying with the idea of a diesel switching line based on an old haunt back in Kansas City. (Terrain DEM'd, distant mountains created, basic markers in place, a smidge of "look see" track down.)

Believe it or not, some of the miles riding the high plains areas (i.e. flat and looooooong stretches) was spent contemplating what route project I would like to pursue once back home and back in the routine of life. As I pondered what I wanted to do with my V scale hobby, I've come to a conclusion. (I think. blush.gif )

1. I would like a change of pace and a new challenge.

Let me elaborate. (OOooo... that sounded "preachy", didn't it? biggrin.gif )

I know I would enjoy furthering the ON extention. BUT, one of the reasons I am considering same is because I have a SIZABLE object, texture, and terrtex library that would help me progress rapidly. In otherwords, a path of least resistance. However, once finished, by virtue of the terrain and locale, it would be more of what I have already created. Only the riverfront town of Ozark would truly be new ground for me.

Make no mistake, the Ozark Northern was a very gratifying project. (In fact, I am made to feel very proud of my accomplishments everytime I view Nick's "At The Rail Yard" review of the Ozark Northern. Thank you Nick.)

BUT... I'm sort of wanting new ground to cover. (I've done Ozark routes. Three times.)

So, I'm left with two very intriguing projects that are tugging at me:

1. The Colorado Central.

2. A Kansas City theme switching line.

Let's look at the Colorado Central first:

Wow, it would DEFINITELY be different from anything I've tackled. The terrain is spectacular. Rocky, rugged, spruce trees, and such. (I have a gig of Colorado textures in my texture library.) The prototype was fascinating, the towns are fabulous, and lots to do, railroading wise. BUT... significant compromises would need to be implemented.

For examples:

* There was a lot of dual gauge track at Golden. Though there is a dual track system available for MSTS, it has its technical shortcomings that would prevent it being used with close prototypical adherance.

* There was only a turntable at Golden and Black Hawk. For "never ending activities", a way to turn locomotives would be helpful, resulting in unprototypical wyes being placed. Of course, there are other areas that would need compromise, but you get the idea.

In effect, there would be lots of compromises that would detract from it being a "highly prototoypical" endeavor. BUT... what COULD be created could be a superb line with stunning visuals and interesting operational possiblilites that would definitely capture the FEEL and ATMOSPHERE of the prototype. Highly accurate, no. Highly convincing and immersive, very likely.

Like I said... the Colorado Central is SOOOOO tempting.


Then there's the Kansas City theme switching line.

I've already tossed out the idea of this being a prototypical effort. As I learned via viewing diagrams, pictures, and the like, there was simply TOO MUCH rail infrastructure. We're talking HUGE rail yards (plural) and such.

SOOO... IF I tackle this as a project, it would be a freelanced endeavor BASED on the protoype area, but with SIGNIFICANT reduction in railroad plant. What I have in mind is:

* At least a couple of double track main lines running among the area served by the switching line on which could be lots of AI train "eye candy". These would be fun to watch as one goes about the task of switching the "West Bottoms" area.

* An industrial area based on the "West Bottoms" of KC with tall "brick canyon type" manufacturing plants, warehouses, etc, including street running and so forth. Lots of places to duck in and grab a car, spot one here, switch a larger industry over there. You get the idea.

The era would be mid-sixties or so. For power it would either "borrow" the power of the prototype "Kansas City Terminal", or, I would create my own railroad and call it the "Kansas City Belt RR".

This too, could be a lot of fun to create and would be like NOTHING I have created to date.

My oh my, so much to ponder and enjoy in the coming weeks of summer!

Welp.... all for now!!