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Wednesday, November 25, 2015

New Card System

I have been discussing this system with our members and have had only positive input so I will continue working on it. A couple like it so much they are interested in using it themselves.

This car forwarding system would be based on industry requirements instead of rolling stock. Cards would be made up for each industry. Lets use Zorra Cement as an example. The weekly or daily needs would need to be decided. Say 1 hopper of coal per week, 1 covered hopper a day to Cyclone loaders, 2 covered hoppers per day to the silos and 3 box cars a day to the warehouse.  So if the week is 5 days long, the cards for this Industry would include, 1 card for 1 hopper of coal, 5 cards for 1 hopper to the cyclone loaders, 5 cards for 2 covered hoppers for the silos, and 5 cards for 3 box cars to the warehouse. When someone delivers say 3 box cars to the warehouse siding, they also pick up all the cars there, so no siding will ever be full. This will also eliminate stranded cars. Even though Zorra takes 16 cards, there are 4 delivery spots there. A place like Cliffs Junk Yard may only have 1 card for a gondola of scrap. 
With this system specific cars are not required, eg. If a box car is needed, anyone will do, no more miss-placed rolling stock or looking for a specific car number. The team track would have 5 cards, 1 for each day, they will say, 1 car load, so just about any car could be used, same with the harbour Crane. Places like the coal mine, the stock yards, the refinery, the ice house, the coaling towers, the coal dock, the coal dealer, Oxford sand And gravel, and Coastal Oil, only need 5 cards, 1 for each day, with multiple cars on each card. Others using 2 types of rolling stock may need 10 cards and so on. I estimate About 53 cars are needed for each day, so our card holders will still work.
 Train crews will select enough cars to make up a train of about 8 cars, until all the cars for day 1 are done. When trains are completed, the cards will be returned to the back (behind a divider card) of the day 1 box. Cards in a box can be shuffled to add variety. In some cases 1 card may list 2 types of rolling stock, eg. 1 box car and 2 covered hoppers to Mutual Grain I made up a set of scrap cards for day one. At an average of 10 cars per train it would take 8 trains per day. When I picked random card for each train of about 10 cars the results were quite interesting. Never did a Train switch all towns, 1 only went to Lincoln. The quantity of cars delivered will be varied for each day to add variety. What I see good about this system is - its simple, no sidings should be full because you take away all the cars on that siding, it's logical, if a location ships a box car they also need 1 to load, train consists and industries to be switched are never the same, volume shippers get multiple pieces of rolling stock, only car types are important, car numbers are not used, no rolling stock gets lost, it doesn't matter if 2 cars have the same Numbers. One set of boxes will service Wellington and Elsewhere. What's bad, if you swap box cars at one location how do you remember not to use it at the next location, is that important, it could be empty going to be loaded? Someone could put Mondays cards in Wednesdays Box, but they will have the day at the top so not hard to sort out.

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