Archive | March 2015

Operations Department

Enfield Local Part II

For the first “meat and potatoes” installment of my discussion of operations on my modified loop, based on Enfield New Hampshire, I thought I would get some paperwork out of the way. Below is the timetable for local service on the section of the B&M Northern line modeled on my layout from White River Junction, in Vermont, to Enfield New Hampshire, which lies on the shores of Mascoma Lake, where I spent my early childhood. The timetable reflects regular freight service (EN-10 weekdays only) and two way, morning and evening, passenger service (Nos. 5 & 10 on weekdays and Nos. 25 & 35 on weekends).

Enfield Timetable

Obviously extras aren’t reflected on the timetable and that is where we find ourselves today. Without staging, or the planned East Lebanon / Mascoma section, much of what occurs on the timetable cannot happen. I’m not lazy but my layout currently lacks adequate space to switch trains around and I am not about to muck about replacing EN-10 with a passenger train as needed. My solution to this dilemma is to operate a mixed train as an extra with a Train Order.  Below is a blank example of the train orders I use:

trainorder-1Completing the train order is relatively self-explanatory and straight forward. Drop-offs and pick-ups are hand written and the passenger combine must be worked around during switching moves.

Hopefully this information will be helpful, or maybe give you some ideas. My way of operating is not prototypical but it works for me. In the next installment I will walk you through how I complete a train order and stage a consist for the next day. If you have any questions feel free to ask in the comments.


Random Rail Shot

BNSF in my backyard –


To be honest, I am not a fan of living in a housing addition.  I enjoy having space and I value my privacy even more.  Still, an addition is where I find myself and our new-build home lies pretty close to a grade-crossing which sees a Norfolk Southern train about every hour during the week, that isn’t too shabby.  Today is Sunday and my young son and I are suffering from the ravages of the common cold, due to the mild weather I thought a walk and some fresh air might help us both feel better.  While out and about we heard the unmistakable horn of a diesel locomotive off in the distance, I pushed that stroller towards the tracks as fast as I could.  In the corner of a double-lot sized area, which will eventually be a community pool and park, we discovered a bit of a hill which overlooks the NS line that runs past our neighborhood.  We settled down and within a few minutes we were rewarded with a great view of a passing auto-rack train.  What made this train even more interesting was its BNSF motive power, which isn’t uncommon on NS lines around here but is still makes a very nice contrast to the all black NS engines which head up most of the consists in our area.

So to recap, we got fresh air, made a new memory together, and discovered a great spot to watch trains which is comfortably close to home.  All things considered… it was a pretty good day despite being a little under the weather.

Operations Department

Enfield Local Part I –

So I just wanted to throw a teaser up here, in the near future I am going to outline an operating session on my “Enfield, NH” layout as it exists right now.  We are still in the process of unpacking boxes and getting settled so there are still a lot of things yet to be done on the layout, which I have discussed previously in my blog.  No I haven’t given up on modeling the Northern with some of my new found basement space, but that is a project for the future, when space is sorted out, time is more readily available, and the needs/wants of a new home are met.

For the meantime I am using my modified loop, loosely modeled on Enfield, New Hampshire, to fulfill my model railroading needs and thankfully, my original design allows for some decent operations.  The plan is to add a small staging yard and a short finished addition which will represent the East Lebanon/Mascoma section of the actual Northern (which will be a little out of order due to the way Rte 4 runs on my layout).  For now, here is a quick shot of the Enfield Local just railroad-north of Enfield:


Stay tuned for Part II of this series, where I hope to discuss some paperwork and how it applies to operations on my Enfield layout.