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RMD West route, oncoming template
dgionet
post Jan 8 2013, 07:35 PM
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Hello to all,

As you know, testing has begun on the RMD_West route, as we read at the Trainsim site (Route Design forum). I have also received the route files with permission from Lukas (aka Swissie) to proceed ahead with installation of the route and construction of the template pending its official release.

I want to thank Moe (dispatcher) for telling me about the oncoming release, also for giving a good word for me to have the route available to prepare grounds for the oncoming template. He has received the route to allow creating the route system maps, like he has done for the RMD_East route. But the last is to thank Lukas to allow me having in advance the route. It has been a long time I have wished for this route to see the day and now it has come.

I have also received Moe's maps. That helps a lot to start planning the project. Thanks again Moe!

Due to the large presence of the Northern Pacific (NP) railroad in the RMD_West route, I plan to use the NP freight pack from BLW. Consequently, many of the earlier downloads used on the RMD_East route won't be required anymore. The BA&P now absent in the current route and with the BLW pack which had been released after the completed RMD_East template, the required downloads has been reduced from 25 (for the RMD_East) to the current 17. Most of the original downloads on the RMD East route will remain on the RMD_West route. I expect to keep the same timeframe as with the earlier template, that is around 1962.

I have yet to install the rolling stock and the route itself but the project is now on and hope to give teaser shots of the route up to its official release.


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dgionet
post Jan 11 2013, 11:38 AM
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Hello to all,

I have started exploring the route and looking at the rolling stock used for the RMD_East to see if it is still suitable for the RMD_West route template or will it require some adaptation. I have also taken in consideration release of new MSTS material since the completed RMD_East template in late 2010.

Some changes were made to the rolling stock. The number of required downloads is so far at 20, including the BLW NP freight pack, as mentioned earlier, still below the former 25 used for the RMD_Easr route. The BLW NP pack will be the only payware set that will be required to run the oncoming template. On the former RMD_East template, one payware was required to have a couple of GP9's be used for the template. Here the NP freight pack, to replace the former payware has all the NP motive power and adds some boxcars and cabooses to the stock.

It has been noticed that the MILW Cottonwood branch is non electrified and will require some MILW diesel power. It has been decided to use the Columbus Locomotive Works (CLW) Milwaukee road SD7 & SD9 pack, ideal to this era of the early sixties. It is free but registration is required to download the set.

Also to notice some sidings, including at Carbonite and inside the Cottonwood branch, which require use of logging cars to have work on. The Carbonite sidings are new in the RMD_West route since they were absent in the original RMD-4 route, made originally by Jerry Sullivan.

I have still some exploration to do before putting the first markers and want to take the time in rolling stock selection as some areas may need some additional stock.

Here are some shots. The first two where the famous "S" trestle is located at Carbonite and the last two are some of the new rolling stock introduced, here the CLW SD7 & SD9 as well as the logging cars required for the template package. The last two have been take inside the Bonner Mill facilities inside the non-electrified Cottonwood branch. At Carbonite, you can see the two levels of track one above the other to point out the challenging terrain in building the rail line. On the trestle, you can see the two NP GP18's, actually the bonus pack from BLW. The BLW pack includes the main NP pack, the bonus pack shown here and an update to the main pack.

The shots:









Will update later


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dgionet
post Jan 20 2013, 07:21 AM
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Hello to all,

Construction of the template package has started and is progressing well. The markers has been set and there will be around 180 serviceable sidings on both lines. The proper car types have been set to each of them. AI traffic has been set on the first template, which is the MILW WB main template, traffic present on both MILW and NP lines. It is mainly a through run from Deer Lodge to Alberton and from Alberton to Avery. Why not a straight run between Deer Lodge to Avery? Alberton is a crew change stop as well as Avery and Deer Lodge. On the NP, Paradise and Missoula are the points where crew changes. I have re-introduced the MILW Olympian Hiawatha which, due to a serious issue during construction of the RMD_East template, had to be scrapped from the required downloads on the RMD_East route. That means the timeframe will be moved back two years (1962 for the RMD_East) to 1960, during his last years of existence. The Olympian Hiawatha ended service in 1961.

The templates which are planned are the main line EB and WB templates for both lines, mainly between the main yards, with some work in some areas along the way. LOCALS templates are also expected between the main yards and maybe some YARDS templates at Missoula (NP) and Deer Lodge (MILW).

The MILW WB template is finished and here are the first pictures of the first SLG generated activity between Deer Lodge and Alberton. It will be important to set one of the sidings (usually the longest) of the main yards as your final destination, since they are only crew change points.

The shots:

Starting point at Deer Lodge


At Garrison with an EB NP freight run with F-units from the BLW NP Freight pack


A meet at Ozan


Along the mainline


Another meet at Clinton


Missoula


Meeting the Olympian Hiawatha


The NP and MILW crossing at Huson


Arrival at Alberton


Confirmitation of a successfull activity



Will update later


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Denis Gionet
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dgionet
post Jan 20 2013, 08:34 PM
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Hi to all,

I have started to check the possibility of using the 2-Boxcab (no bobtail engines) MILW E50 engine to serve the MILW LOCALS Template. Testing seems to conclude that the player engine can easily handle a 25-car load in climbng grades.

Here are some shots taken at Bryson and East Portal areas. I have still to check its descent to Avery. That will be done later this week.

At Bryson, preparing a meet with an oncoming short diesel train with livestock empties ( see upper right)


The meet


Exiting Bryson (see the difference in elevation behind after the next curve)


The next two at East portal and at the entrance to the St.Paul Pass tunnel.




More later.


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dgionet
post Jan 27 2013, 05:58 PM
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Hi to all,

Lukas Lusser had sent me some schedules of both the MILW and the NP lines of late forties and early fifties and have looked at it. Although, the template's timeframe in around 1960, I have worked with the purpose to implement some of the trains that were in operation.

For the first templates the main Westbound templates for both lines, I have decided to redo from scratch the entire traffic pattern using some of the real-time schedule trains. One example was the NP train 600 (aka the "Fruiter"), which was a load of fruit cars from the West to the East. Many of the trains ran mostly under the dark but was able to have at least five (5) trains with real-time schedules and set them up to leave at the exact time and was able to set their arrival with about five to 15 minutes of difference. Some of the trains that were actually in the dark but ended their run at daylight. For example, the fruiter leaves Paradise at 2:40 AM and arrives ar Garrison at 6:55 am. Since the player train departures from Deer Lodge had been moved back to 6:00 Am, the user will be able to see it from the MILW or to meet it (for the NP) It seems many of the NP freight did not use the Butte short line, so at Garrison, they kept on straight Eastward toward Mullan Pass, Helena and through Logan, bypassing Deer Lodge and Butte.

The AI traffic pattern has been done to work simultaneously on both the MILW and the NP. Two scheduled trains are very close to each other. That means the user may have to wait for both trains before having the green. However the waiting time won't bee too long.

Out from the 17 AI traffic trains which are part of the traffic pattern, five of them are authentic. They include the NP fruiter, the MILW Olympian Hiawatha, the NP North Coast Limited, the NP Mainstreeter ( a mail/passenger train) and a MILW through freight from the West.

I have started and finished testing the traffic pattern on both lines, running on the MILW line between Deer Lodge and Alberton with success.

Except for the first picture (ending my previous two boxcab run at Avery), here are some of the trains I have seen and met along the way.



The Fruiter


The North Coast Limited


The Throughfreight, numbered 262


Two shots of the Olympian Hiawatha




Will start building the NP mainline template and once finished test the Deer Lodge-Missoula run.

more developments later


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dgionet
post Feb 9 2013, 07:39 PM
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Hello to all,

Work is continuing in building the templates and testing. A lot or work has been done in refining the different templates.

With Lukas Lusser's permission, Benny (bennycdn) has received the route and is helping me with testing the templates. He has been very helpful in finding some issues with the route, allowing Lukas to made some corrections before its oncoming and official release.Thanks again Benny with your help!

Lukas has also been providing me with some very interesting details of the route and history. One example is the type of grades leading to St-Paul-Lookout (and from both sides of it, quite rare with such grades!) inside the Coeur d'Alene Branch, the grades are of 4%. Also with the curves to reach from the west St-Paul, it's getting even more difficult. Lukas has provided the maximum tonnage to handle the grades. The GP18's used for the Coeur d'Alene template can handle up to 480 tons for each (including the engine itself). That means for 2 GP18's, the number of cars to be pulled along the grades is around 8 loaded cars with caboose, that is about the recommended maximum for the consist. More than that, it is not necessarily guaranteed to reach the top and having successfull meets, since some of the sidings for meeting the AI traffic are short.

Also to notice, with some research in the Northern Pacific Historical Association, the Coeur d'Alene branch is part of the 15th Sub.. It covers from the NP St.Regis area up to Wallace, having shared trackage with the MILW between St.Regis and Haugan.

From the archives of the Northern Pacific Railway Historical Association (nprha.org)


I have created a special template to cover the whole sub. The challenge is that between Wallace and Haugan, it is dark territory and make it more challenging to have traffic on both the MILW and the NP. Well this has been done and will start testing the two paths done so far. The first is a return trip between Wallace and Haugan, Wallace is the starting point. The second path starts at the NP St.Regis, crosses the MILW to haugan and into the Coeur d'Alene Branch.One traffic train is expected on each direction inside the dark territory

A lot of work has been done on that template, as much for the type of cars attribute for each of the sidings as for the timing of AI trains on both signalled and dark territories.I will be starting to test the Coeur d'Alene Branch template.

In the meantime here are some shots from other templates tested, all along the route and includes the Cottonwood branch, and from inside the Coeur d'Alene branch, before its refinement.

Leaving Missoula


Along the NP line via St.Regis


Between Avery and Stetson


Exiting the St-Paul pass tunnel


Between Paradise and St.Regis


SD9&7's at Bonner Jct preparing to work inside the Cottonwood branch


NP Mullan


Working cuts in NP Carbonite, near the famous "S" trestle


One of the curves between Dorsey and St-Paul-Lookout on the 4% grade


Will update later


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dgionet
post Feb 10 2013, 11:16 AM
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Hi everyone,

I am providing some of the shots taken from the Coeur d'Alene branch template. I have misconfigured the timing of the first NP train on the branch and collided with the oncoming short MOW train, about two minutes East of Saltese, where the traffic meet was scheduled. Have moved back this traffic train by 15 minutes and this should resolve the issue. I may try to run it again and have added also some eye-candy traffic along the MILW since both MILW and NP lines run parallel for a while.

Here are the shots taken from the beginning at St.Regis and up to midway between Haugan and Saltese. Some work has been done at Haugan before entering the NP section.

















As development progresses, will be posting later.


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dgionet
post Feb 17 2013, 06:22 PM
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Hello to all,

Work is continuing and goes well, streamlining and refining the whole package. Overall, there are 16 templates, many have been customized like all three MOW templates with its own traffic pattern and different paths. The first five images are from the MOW templates. The first two at Avery (MILW) while the other three are from the MOW template (NP) from Paradise to Missoula via Evaro. It includes a meet with the NP Mainstreeter at Dixon. It has been noticed a signalling issue at the meet and Lukas has been contacted in this manner. The signal shows green despite the fact the Mainstreeter is just one mile away. Luckily, the act had been saved because of work done at Dixon.











The other images, from the Coeur d'Alene template, start from Saltese and go up to Wallace. It includes a meet at Saltese. The player train will have to take the siding at Saltese, wait for the train to clear before resuming the act. At Wallace, the player train will have to do a runaround to set the last cars of his train to end the activity. The successfull activity took 3hours and 50 minutes

See next post for the remaining images.


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Denis Gionet
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dgionet
post Feb 17 2013, 06:22 PM
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The remaining images





















Will keep updating later


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dgionet
post Feb 19 2013, 08:33 PM
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Hi to all,

Additional shots from a successful activity of a NP local between Garrison and Deer Lodge with a return path to Garrison. Took 1h 40 minutes. At Deer Lodge, the runaround will require some complex moves to get back to Garrison.













Will update as it develops


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Denis Gionet
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dgionet
post Feb 24 2013, 07:33 PM
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Hello to all,

Testing continues and Benny keeps giving me positive reports of activities generated with some recommendations of improvement. On my side, I have generated two activities with the MILW SD7&9's as the player engines.

The first set of images come from the MILW EB MOW template from Avery to Haugan, successfully done in 2 hours and 50 minutes. The 2nd set of images is from the MILW Cottonwood branch template activity, also done with success in close to one hour.

From the EB MOW template













From the COTTONWOOD template








More to come as it progresses


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dgionet
post Mar 6 2013, 04:15 PM
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Hello to all,

Testing is continuing on the templates done and am including some shots.

A lot of work has been done and time spent to refine the Coeur d'Alene branch template, especially the path from Wallace to Haugan with return trip to Wallace
Remember there are signalled and non-signalled (NP section between Haugan and Wallace) sections of the Coeur d'Alene branch. That took some careful timing to have some AI along the route.

There are two trains in the dark territory with meets at St-Paul Summit for the trip to Haugan and at Saltese for the return trip to Haugan. The user is expected to wait at both locations to let the train pass to resume the run. The path from NP St.Regis is expected some traffic along the MILW and one train inside the dark territory to meet at Saltese.

The shots:

Inside NP's Bitteroot branch


Unhooking diesels (Thanks to the BIN) from the electrics to access the cars inside the non-electrified NP/MILW interchange siding at St.Regis


The remaining from the Coeur d'Alene Branch from Wallace to Haugan and return to Wallace. Images depict two different acts from the first half of the run between Wallace and Haugan

Towards Mullan


The famous "S" Trestle at Carbonite


Along the steep 4% grade near St-Paul Summit (Lookout)


The meet at St-Paul


Before reaching Borax.


At Borax. The viewer can see the two levels of tracks behind which are a lot higher compared to the current position of the train. Very twisting tracks as you can see
The tunnel separate both levels of tracks (see below)



Preparing the return home to Wallace. Some work still to be done at the Haugan REA siding ( behind) before proceeding back home.
The first segment took more than 2h30 min to reach Haugan. Still probably three hours to go before the return home to Wallace.


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dgionet
post Jan 4 2015, 09:28 PM
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Keeping the dream alive...

Following the release of the GP30 sets from BLW/ZT, I have purchased the West Pack 2 and have generated from the finished templates a LOCALS EB template between Alberton and Deer Lodge. It started at 3PM and is expected to handle 50 cars once reaching in Deer Lodge. The year 1961 ( the timeframe for the templates) saw the first GP30's. I have substituted the default electrics for the BLW MILW GP30's.

At the time of the last shot, close to sunset, 45 cars have been handled successfully so far and only two areas remain to be worked at Garrison and Kohrs before reaching Deer Lodge. 5 1/2 hours have past since departure from Alberton. Work has been done successfully in Soudan, Schilling, Missoula, Drummond and Gold Creek. The first shot is West of Drummond and the remaining three are at Gold Creek, about 20 miles West from Deer Lodge. At Gold Creek time is past 8PM and is getting dark. This is about the time work has been done there and also met an oncoming WB past 8:30 PM. Still another hour estimated before reaching Deer Lodge, ending another successfull activity. total time estimated for the entire act: 6 1/2 hours. I have enjoyed working with these MILW GP30's . Another great work from BLW/ZT. Congratulations to the team.

The shots:









For those not familiar with the latest news about the route and its creator, Lukas Lusser, here's the link from the trainsim.com site:

http://www.trainsim.com/vbts/showthread.php?319834-RMD-West

Like many of you, I am hopeful to see this great route released in the future.


ADDENDUM:

Reached successfully Deer Lodge at exactly 9:30PM in the dark with all the work done. This is the second longest activity I have ever done - 6 1/2 hours to complete with 4 meets along the way. The longest activity has been done in February 2011 on the Blackfoot 2 route. It took more than 8 hours to complete the run.

The last shots:





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Denis Gionet
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dgionet
post Jul 13 2016, 07:08 PM
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Hello to all,

Following the release of the RMD West route ( thanks to Moe) in the TS web site, I feel comfortable to release the RMD West route template. Although it has been tested about three years ago and modified last year following a small route update, little has changed and small modifications were done to update the template package. This is why I will release as is to allow our AG users to enjoy now the route and its template package.

Pending its release in the templates page, I will make it available via OneDrive. Simply write me a request to download the template set and I will provide the link to download it. My Email address is photoman_57 (at) hotmail (dot) ca

Here is the official image that should be seen once uploaded in the templates page:



Will confirm later once the package uploaded


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Denis Gionet
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dgionet
post Jul 24 2016, 04:24 PM
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Just to confirm that Steve had uploaded the RMD West template package in the templates page.

It has been a long time waiting for this route and evenmore this template and am very happy to share it with our users. Thanks to Moe Smith, this route is now available in TS. Much appreciated Moe for your efforts!

Thanks Steve for your assistance and happy trainsimming to all.


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