Saturday, June 28, 2014

B.O. - an ops session fact of life

I had another operating session last night, trying out some new ops software & some other things. I'll do a more detailed post on that later, but for now I want to encourage you & your operators not to be afraid of BO.

As in Bad Order cars :)

Any operating session can result in some minor damage to cars, faulty couplers, etc, or just plain glitches that - thanks to Murphy & his Law - only crop up when folks visit to run the layout. Whenever those problems occur, the solution is to do what the prototype railroads do - pull the car for later repair. 

I've designated a drawer for such cars - keeps then out of the way and makes it easy to transport them up to the workbench. Here's the crop from last night, sitting next to me ready to get fixed. 

Nothing major - just a bunch of minor things that, once done, will make these cars ready to go back into service for the next ops session (which is good, considering I discovered that my railroad is woefully short of boxcars - but that's another story)

BO - don't fret about it, just do whatcha gotta do about it and move on :)


  1. Wow - six cars in for triage! What on earth are your operators doing to your layout?!? ;-)
    Great idea, Chris. I might have one car after a session that requires a bit of attention (but I don't have that much rolling stock) so I can keep track of it, but if I had more rolling stock in the game I'd be stealing this idea.
    Great to hear about the operating sessions too...
    - Trevor
    Port Rowan in 1:64

  2. To be fair, 2/3 of these cars were in for coupler issues - and that's builder error rather than user error. I thought the manufacturer's press-fit coupler box covers would work fine. I was wrong :( Another car had a roofwalk pop off (manufacturer error). Only one car was user error - a broken-off brakewheel, easily repaired. Considering last night's session was actually *two* back-to-back sessions which moved a total of about 100 cars, I think we did quite well!

    1. I think you did too! Of course, I was joking about your operators.
      I also think it's a good thing to report this type of stuff - I'm sure many people who read our blogs are not operating regularly, and they should know that sometimes, models get damaged during a session. Obviously we try to minimize it, but knowing that stuff is going to happen means we're not going to freak out when it does...