Wednesday, October 16, 2013

(PreOps) Ops Session Success!

It all came down to last night....  All the construction, preparation, and paperwork culminated in a "dress rehearsal" of sorts for operations on the CT Valley Line.

Valley Local crew Pieter Roos & Bill Schneider at Wethersfield
Since this was the first time the layout would be operated as designed, I wasn't at all certain that things would go as planned.  So I invited a few folks over who had helped with the design & construction (all the better to spread blame for any failures!), who could provide helpful feedback (since they'd been involved in the evolution of the concept), and who wouldn't give me TOO hard a time if things didn't go well.

AirLine local crew Dick Otto & Pete Luchini at Somerset
Fortunately, aside from a few relatively minor issues, things went great!  The biggest unknown operationally was how the meet in Middletown yard between the AirLine local (HDX-12) and the Valley Local (HDX-7) would go.  They have to hand off cars to one another and HDX-7 has switching to do both in the yard and south of town.  Also, while the rest of the Valley line trackage is almost identical to the prototype, Middletown had to be compressed considerably.  I'll get more into the givens & druthers of the track arrangements in a future post, but suffice it to say that the interchange & switching went well despite the shrunken yard.

The Meet at Middletown
So, all in all, a very successful dress rehearsal.  I have the inevitable "punch list" of things I need to do/fix before regular operating sessions start, but it looks like we're good to go!

Post-session libations with Pete, Pieter, Bill, Randy Hammill, and Dick


  1. Had a great time, and all ran amazingly well! Hope that you've recovered.. .:>)

    1. Glad you enjoyed it - and also glad the layout worked so well (despite my lack of track cleaning). Just gotta resolder those feeders - glad they were only on sidings and not the main! Already looking forward to the next session!