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What Turns Your Crank? 9/7/11


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#1 laming

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 05:20 PM

Hi Crew:

Been AWFUL quiet in here of late. (Lots of it my fault, too.) However, I do have some NEWS:

I have re-installed MSTS onto my new C drive. (Yah for me! laugh.gif ) I have an issue with my video card settings, but I'll eventually get around to finding out what I can do about it. (I can't adjust them! That is, the Nvidia "Control Panel" is broke... I can't adjust my anti-aliasing, or antri... antro... antriopsosotipeic... whatever it's called blink.gif .)

As I was installing my various projects, I happened to ponder some things that concern my interests in MSTS, which made me ponder some things about YOU all out there.

Thought it might be interesting to run an informal poll w/input to see what makes your little MSTS ticker tick. Here's the deal... simply answer in your reply with the number of the question and the letter of your selection. When complete, feel free to elaborate as needed... it's only electrons!

Example:

1. What is your favorite type of route?

A. Strictly prototype. (As accurately as practical.)
B. Based on a prototype. (Track/towns may not be specific to an era, etc.)
C. Protolanced. (Based on prototype practices and may/may not be overlayed onto a prototype rail setting.)
D. Freelanced/Fantasy. (No attempt to reflect prototype/etc. Can be totally concocted including hand shaped terrain.)

In the case of the above example, your answer may look like this:

1. A

Get it? Okay... let's get on with it...

1. What is your favorite type of route?

A. Strictly prototype.
B. Based on a prototype. (Track/towns may not be specific to an era, etc.)
C. Protolanced. (Based on prototype practices and may/may not be overlayed onto a prototype rail setting.)
D. Freelanced/Fantasy. (No attempt to reflect prototype/etc. Can be totally concocted including hand shaped terrain.)


2. What is your favorite Era?

A. Modern (i.e. within the past few years)
B. De-regulation era. (roughly the 80's up to current time.)
C. Classic Era. (Roughly after dieselization up to De-regulation.)
E. Transistion Era. (The steam/diesel transistion.)
F. Standard Era. (Essentially "modern" steam. Only a handful of very early diesel electrics.)
G. Golden Era. (Pure steam. From about the teens up to the advent of early diesel electrics.)
F. TOC19. The "Turn Of the 19th Century" decades, roughly the late 1870's up to 1910 or so.)
H. Civil War era and earlier.

3. What is your favorite way to enjoy MSTS?

A. Explore with various consists and trains (and perhaps photograph).
B. Run someone ELSE'S activities.
C. Run someone else's activities, as well as create your own activities.
D. Try to replicate prototype operation via activities.

4. How do you modify routes?

A. I don't!
B. Perhaps different trees or terrtex, perhaps some structure swaps.
C. Same as B, but also the track and roads.
D. Willing to totally revamp as needed to accomplish my goal.

5. Do you repaint models?

A. No.
B. Yes, structures and scenery items.
C. Yes, rolling stock.
D. Yes, engines.
E. Answers B through D.

6. Do you create models?

A. No.
B. Yes, structures, scenic items.
C. Yes, mainly rolling stock.
D. Yes, mainly engines.
E. Answers B through D.

There you go! Share your MSTS experience with us here, feeling free to comment as desired!

Have fun!

#2 rfranzosa

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 05:29 PM

1. What is your favorite type of route?
A. Strictly prototype.

2. What is your favorite Era?
C. Classic Era. (Roughly after dieselization up to De-regulation.)

3. What is your favorite way to enjoy MSTS?
A. Explore with various consists and trains (and perhaps photograph).

4. How do you modify routes?
A. I don't!

5. Do you repaint models?
C. Yes, rolling stock.
D. Yes, engines.

6. Do you create models?
C. Yes, mainly rolling stock.
D. Yes, mainly engines.

Rick Franzosa
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#3 zhilton

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 05:44 PM

QUOTE(laming @ Sep 7 2011, 6:01 PM) View Post

1. What is your favorite type of route?


1. Strictly prototype/Based on a prototype.
(On the fence with this one...)

2. De-regulation era. (because I "come of age" during that time frame)
But....Classic Era (As a model railroader).

3. C & D

4. A

5. A

6. And "A" again

But that's just me...


#4 dcarleton

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 05:58 PM

1. What is your favorite type of route?
A. Strictly prototype.
Except for reasonable deviations from the prototype if these will dramatically improve frame rates.

2. What is your favorite Era?
C. Classic Era. (Roughly after dieselization up to De-regulation.)
Especially the period when all the steam era stuff was still around, like 40' box cars and lots of passenger trains; and there was still some steam around if you knew where to find it.

3. What is your favorite way to enjoy MSTS?
C. Run someone else's activities, as well as create your own activities.
Especially: Learn the activities supplied with a route and then substitute our choice of equipment

4. How do you modify routes?
B. Perhaps different trees or terrtex, perhaps some structure swaps.
Leave the track database alone so that activities created by others will install without difficulty.

5. Do you repaint models?
E. Answers B through D.
Some simple retexturing tricks can have a dramatic effect!

6. Do you create models?
A. No.
Still learning / Having too much fun with the first five items above.

David Carleton


#5 milepost56

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 06:23 PM

1. What is your favorite type of route?

A. Strictly prototype.
B. Based on a prototype. (Track/towns may not be specific to an era, etc.)

2. What is your favorite Era?
C. Classic Era. (Roughly after dieselization up to De-regulation.)

3. What is your favorite way to enjoy MSTS?

A. Explore with various consists and trains (and perhaps photograph).

4. How do you modify routes?
A. I don't!

5. Do you repaint models?
A. No.

6. Do you create models?
A. No.

By the way, I just got my PC rebuilt by my brother Sean so I am back in MSTS. I forgot how much I dig that A&O.....so think Frisco or MKT 1st and early 2nd generation power, etc....

#6 TheGrindre

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 07:27 PM

1. What is your favorite type of route?
C. Protolanced. (Based on prototype practices and may/may not be overlayed onto a prototype rail setting.)

2. What is your favorite Era?
F. TOC19. The "Turn Of the 19th Century" decades, roughly the late 1870's up to 1910 or so.)
H. Civil War era and earlier.
I actually enjoy the complete steam era from its conception to its demise.

3. What is your favorite way to enjoy MSTS?
B. Run someone ELSE'S activities.
C. Run someone else's activities, as well as create your own activities.

4. How do you modify routes?
B. Perhaps different trees or terrtex, perhaps some structure swaps.

5. Do you repaint models?
E. Answers B through D.

6. Do you create models?
E. Answers B through D.

I'm afraid I have to answer to two possibilities because I like or do both...

#7 laming

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 07:47 PM

Wow!!!

Lots of input!

Thus far, looks like the majority of you prefer a prototype route, like diesels (Classic Era gets the nod so far), prefer to run someone else's activities... do some repainting... even some modeling.

Then there's oddballs like Rick and me! We dig teakettles, too! BTW, good to "see" you Rick... I haven't seen you around here, or other places. Hope all is well.

Kevin: Welcome back to simming! Also, thanks for the kind words on the A&O. It really is a shame that it takes SOOOO long to build a decent sized route, as well as equipping it with locomotives/rolling stock. I have LOTS of route themes I would LOVE to complete "one of these days". (Sigh.)

I'll check in again tomorrow after I get home from work!


#8 billmoyer

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 08:40 PM

1. C

2. All

3. C

4 - 6. A

Main line running puts me to sleep blush.gif . Give me switching chores, any era, and I'm happy!! biggrin.gif biggrin.gif

Bill

#9 pnrailway

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Posted 08 September 2011 - 03:50 AM

Andre,

I will jump in here as well and stop lerking as I have been doing for ages.

1. What is your favorite type of route?

B. Based on a prototype. (Track/towns may not be specific to an era, etc.)
and
C. Protolanced. (Based on prototype practices and may/may not be overlayed onto a prototype rail setting.)


2. What is your favorite Era?

C. Classic Era. (Roughly after dieselization up to De-regulation.)
But like David, I like steam around as well, a few hardy holdouts as it were that have escaped the torch.


3. What is your favorite way to enjoy MSTS?

A. Explore with various consists and trains (and perhaps photograph).
and
C. Run someone else's activities, as well as create your own activities.
This to get to know the route by running those from the route creator as well as us a program like Activity Generator to be able to generate an endless set of activities to enjoy the day-to-day switching along the line.

4. How do you modify routes?

B. Perhaps different trees or terrtex, perhaps some structure swaps.


5. Do you repaint models?

E. Answers B through D.

6. Do you create models?

A. No.

Sice I live in a state where there are no basements and no attics, and a garage is way to hot and dusty to build a model railroad in, this is my form of model railroading, one that even if you move, you can take your model railroads with you no matter the size of the new house, I enjoy MSTS and the fellowship places like this bring.

Paul

#10 laming

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Posted 08 September 2011 - 04:41 PM

Home from work, well fed... time to sit down, relax a spell, and do some BS'ing. smile.gif

Frankly, it comes as no surprise to me that diesels lead the pack in regards to area of interest of those that posted in this thread.

My sales prove that.

To wit: Since installing my new C drive and its fresh install of Outlook Express, my route sales since installation reflect the above conclusion. HOWEVER... (and this is surprising) the A&O has not outsold my steam route(s) by a LANDSLIDE margin. Amazingly, the A&O only accounts for 53% of my route sales. This means there are indeed OTHER ENTHUSIASTS "out there" that also dig early steam.

It is interesting to me to note that some of you prefer "Strictly Prototype". Confession: There are many prototype projects residing on my hard drive. Over the past year or two, I have learned that IN SOME WAYS, it is personally rewarding to attempt replicating a prototype line. It is indeed "cool" to travel over the rails of a line, see representitive terrain of the area... and imagine what it would look like to have key structures in place.

However, in those same one to two years I have also learned: There are FRUSTRATIONS in trying replicate prototype lines. It's sort of a double edged sword: Rewarding in some ways, very frustrating in others. I think the frustrations arise from:

1. Regardless of the medium (MSTS, Trainz, Railworks) there ARE techincal and practical limitations that WILL force compromises... BIGTIME. Plus, I have discovered that I also will compromise when it comes to feature "overlap". That is: This industry was there in 1960... but wasn't there in 1964 when this OTHER big industry was put in place just over yonder. Result? I tend to model both (for things to do once finished)... and accept the compromise. Copish?

2. As advanced as digital terrain modeling has become, there are still significant discrepencies between modeled terrain and the "real deal". (Said from experience with MSTS subjects based in my regional Ozarks and Ouachitas mountains.)

3. IF I'm successful getting the track in for a prototype, I typically drop the ball when its time to start building specific structures for it. Few reasons: Lack of information (how wide/long/tall was it?), lack of good textures, etc, etc.

4. But the BIGGIE: Most prototype lines have WAY TOO MUCH track between places to switch (i.e. towns/industries). In addition, there isn't ENOUGH interesting stuff at most "interest points". Thus, I can get bored running the route. Running miles and miles to only see a passing siding w/no industries gets old real quick to me. For me, modern railroading compounds this issue.

That 4th point has caused almost ALL of my prototype routes to grind to a halt. That is, I will think I've found a great prototype that I could have interest in, and once it starts shaping up... there's still miles and miles of NOTHING between a little "something". So, I get disheartened with it. Running an actual train in the mountains is GREAT. I never get tired of it. Running a virtual train in the mountains... and it better be a short distance to the next town and place to switch!

Anyway... though I still enjoy tinkering with some of my prototype-based MSTS projects... frankly, a protolanced line overlayed onto a prototype line and setting can offer more bang for the buck when finished!

Thoughts?

#11 bennycdn

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Posted 08 September 2011 - 05:01 PM

1.Type of route a protptype
2.era B&C later steam through early diesel era
3.best enjoyment B,C,D doing other people's acts,creating my own,but with historical data in mind
4. modify routes B&C if I see fit
5.repaint No,but I'd sure like to learn
6. create models No

As with the recent release of Monon10 I like creating and doing activities by the historical timetables.Was watching an old CP video last evening,with Alco power,with msts I can fire it up and run a 424 on the MacTier route just like in the video. Benny

#12 laming

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Posted 09 September 2011 - 08:22 PM

All:

In addition to getting the stuff installed/functioning that I mentioned in my original post, I now have the following up and going on my new hard drive:

DEMEX Beta 02
Mosaic Beta 1

(THANKS for the DEMEX/Mosaic input Charlie!)

AND...

Train Sim Modeler, then updated it to the Commercial Version.

Still to come would be some utilities that I use to decompress/compress shapes, convert bmp's to ace files, etc, etc. Lots still to install... but ever so slowly things are getting back to "normal" with my sim hobby.

In fact, last night I was poking around in RE taking a look at some of my moth-balled route projects that are getting installed. Got a couple/three that still look mighty interesting to me. Even a DIESEL project. Yup... you read correctly: A diesel theme. It's there in my main MSTS "ROUTES" folder as I type. smile.gif



#13 mc130fox

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Posted 10 September 2011 - 10:55 AM

1. A

2. B

3. C

4. C

5. D

6. A

#14 n8yp

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Posted 11 September 2011 - 08:59 AM

1. What is your favorite type of route?
Between A and B. Like prototype, but do like the choice of operating different eras.

2. What is your favorite Era?
Again, between A and B.

3. What is your favorite way to enjoy MSTS?
C.

4. How do you modify routes?
A. I don't! (know how)

5. Do you repaint models?

A. No. (know how)

6. Do you create models?

A. No. (know how)

Adding to the don't know how, I just haven't had time to play. Owned the Abacus Route Builder Guide since it was released, but never got beyond creating the Demex for a sample route I was going to build playing with. I am good with charts, driving to areas, and photographing, but never got that into MSTS. At some point I will, there are two routes that were just 2 miles from where I grew up that haven't had trains run on them for 50 years, and I want to fix that if only on the computer. This is another 3 mile route I want to make, a 3.48% grade into the Niagara, WI papermill that is now shuttered. This was the final train into the property.
Niagara Papermill


#15 laming

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Posted 11 September 2011 - 06:28 PM

Jeremy aka ny8p:

WONDERFUL set of pics. Did you shoot them yourself? Love the way the telephoto was used to emphasize the gradients. 3.48% is a whale of a grade to deal with. In the past I've dealt with 4% and it is no easy task. The current railroad I work for has several miles of 2.6% and is reputed to be the second steepest mainline grade still in operation. (I think Cajon is steeper?)

A 3 mile route would be a great place to start learning route building. That short and steep industrial spur would be an excellent way to begin the process!

BTW: I have an MSTS diesel theme (prototype) I'm looking at that has 4% grades to deal with! Who knows what I'll end up doing?


#16 walterconklin

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 07:01 AM

What a great discussion going!

1. A. For the Tristate_Rails project, my friend Joe Cooney and I try to place the trackage, buildings, and other scenery items in the route as close to the locations of where the real-world counterparts exist or in the case of this virtual route set in the 1920s where the items once existed. The setting for the virtual route is loosely late 1920s. Obviously, the aforementioned rule of thumb is subject to the availability or lack thereof of historical information in the form of track maps, images, etc. 2. A. While my favorite period in railroading from a locomotive ascetic perspective is the late 1940s to early 1950s steam to diesel transition period, I selected the late 1920s for the route because the Middletown & Unionville Railroad, which was the first railroad line built in Tristate_Rails, had many creameries in operation during the late 1920s and was operating passenger trains. By the early 1940s, the Middletown & Unionville Railroad would discontinue its passenger trains as was the case with many smaller railroads at the time. In regards to the third question, between being involved in research and development for my project, I admit that I haven't graduated (yet) from running the Explore Route mode. However, I do see a need for well-researched train sim activities based on prototypical operations to offer a feel of running a train on a particular railroad be it a modern operation and/or of a historical nature. Fourth question -- I like to replace scenery items with more realistic scenery items in my opinion. 5.A. Not yet. Give me a few more years. 6.A. Ditto as question five.

I would really like to add in the virtual route a representation of the extension of a yard built in the 50s/60s to service a major Ford plant in Mahwah, NJ. I think adding the plant and yard would make for interesting operating scenerios. The Erie Lackawanna shipped a lot of cars from Mahwah. But I think I will hold off.

Sincerely,
Walter

#17 scottb613

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Posted 15 September 2011 - 01:17 PM

Hi...

1. What is your favorite type of route?
C. Protolanced. (Based on prototype practices and may/may not be overlayed onto a prototype rail setting.)

2. What is your favorite Era?
E. Transistion Era. (The steam/diesel transistion.)

3. What is your favorite way to enjoy MSTS?
B. Run someone ELSE'S activities.

4. How do you modify routes?
C. Same as B, but also the track and roads.

5. Do you repaint models?
E. Answers B through D.

6. Do you create models?
D. Yes, mainly engines.

LOL - I'm still waiting for that Riverfront TOC scene you mentioned YEARS ago...
smile.gif

Regards,
Scott

#18 laming

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Posted 15 September 2011 - 03:03 PM

QUOTE
LOL - I'm still waiting for that Riverfront TOC scene you mentioned YEARS ago...


So is he...

tongue.gif

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#19 scottb613

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Posted 16 September 2011 - 10:55 AM

LOL...

Regards,
Scott

#20 walterconklin

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Posted 17 September 2011 - 06:36 AM

Hi,

I have been following this forum for years now.

What Riverfront TOC are you referring to?

Thanks,
Walter