I tend to play scenarios out, but they advance most in the middle section. The start is usually just making money, the end trying to perfect timings etc and optimise the network in general (tracks+trains)
Anyway: here's my current game. Based on a random map. UKRS using Improved timetable management and cargodest (which, as I'm discovering, makes for much more fun network building). All PBS signals. The scenario is 1980-current approx (which makes for a short game, but all my favourite trains). Building and running costs are on medium/high.
And here goes
Note: The contents of each post will usually be about the current state of the company, while the picture comments describe the much more interesting details of the trains.
1) We begin by constructing a dedicated line between the mine and power station; it's expensive, but we're hoping to re-use at least some of the metalwork, since the line lies parallel to several possible cross country routes. Also on view is our first locomotive, a leased class 47. It has a low top speed and the power output isn't great, but at the moment there's nothing for it to get in the way of. Due to the short distance (and the fact we can only afford two thirds of a rake of hoppers) it's not currently a big problem.
2) The bare platforms at the power station aren't attractive, but they do the job. It's not like anyone has to stand there waiting for a train anyway.
3) The yard near Acchester reflects the companies current state of finances. At the moment our engineers have to build the trains one wagon at a time, then haul it outside by winch (for lack of any locomotives, even a shunter), before starting on the next. Hopefully once we get established in the area, the board will agree to invest in some decent facilities.
- Our new coal train pulling into the mines. With its lack of a full rake, it's looking rather sorry for itself.
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- The "functional" platform at the power station.
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- Anyone got £20 for a trip to B&Q? We can at least buy an old shed.
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They finally agree on my original plan to connect Godingney and Dunhead, the two biggest cities on the map. Frustrated, I'm finally able to call in contractors to build some stations and track.
Before too long the new line is complete, although again our lack of money shows; the track is mostly single-line working with some short sections of double track where I managed to squeeze the funds out. Initially with another type 47 (47002) running the route, before long there are two trains scheduled, although maintenance issues of both the trains and track wreak havoc on our plans, the initial bugs are eventually ironed out.
1) The new station at Godingley. I managed to secure some land near to the city centre, thanks to the lcoal town council who recognise the need for good public transport within the region. While good for accessibility, I foresee the centralised location becoming problematic later on when we want to expand the station, as we surely will - both for lengthier trains and higher frequency services.
2) Part of the new route near the old coal mine. Shown is one of the new trains (47003) heading toward Dunhead, past the coal mine. This short section between the coal mine and power station has been made double track because the coal train is so slow. We soon noted the need for a more powerful locomotive and less restrictive wagons.
3) Shows the far end of the longest double tracked section on the line, and the switch to allow the track to revert to two single lines. Just off shot 47003 is approaching on the same journey towards Dunhead.
- The new station at Godingley, with one of the company's three type 47s
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- A "down" train to Dunhead passes the coal train loading up at Acchester
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- The switch near the power station
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The entire route is immediately popular with customers despite the slow speed (the down train to Godingley has to wait for the up train more often than not, and the coal train often ends up in front of, rather than behind, the now delayed down train, causing further delays). We hope to improve journey times drastically, along with frequency.
- 47002 nearing the end of its journey passes to the south of Nanthead.
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- Finally arriving in Dunhead station, approximately 2 hours 30 minutes after setting off.
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With a similar capacity to (but better than) the single-locomotive hauled trains before it, and a higher speed, we hope to be able to run these trains at a higher frequency they will replace, leaving these locomotives available for other uses. Initial studies show the trains to be more comfortable, faster and more able to climb (required during the route to Dunhead). Already we can see that the 125 set is consistently arriving early, spelling a good future for the line.
As soon as the class 43s with their mail capacity were introduced, we allowed local businesses to send mail on our trains. So popular, however, was this service that we rushed two of the new 47s (originally slated to run the planned lines to Accdon, Sendale and Charberg) into service as mail services (47004 and 47005) shortly followed by 47006, when supply finally matched up with demand.
Thanks to the popularity of the main line, we were able to double track a stretch of the Central line to two track, between the power station and Nanthead. This new double track line now stretches from Acchester to just short of Dunhead, and has been christened the CML (central main line) - with hopes to extend double working as soon as funds allow. As can be seen below, those sections which are still single track working, while less than before, are still bottlenecks - partly due to the increased traffic on the line. The CML now carries 1 HST unit, 5 class 47 hauled trains (2 passenger, 3 mail) and the still lucrative coal train. Plans to increase capacity are in the works, with re-signalling in the works along with the aforementioned double-tracking.
Visable at the right of the last screenshot is the reason for the delayed work to the CML - the exciting new developments to the East of Godingney. More on this in a moment.
- 125001 with the up train passes 47003 with a down service near Nanthead.
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- 125001 pases 47004 with the first dedicated mail service of the line.
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- 125001 arrives at Godingney early, showing the difference between this train and the locomtive hauled 47's. Standing in the station is 47002 with a rake of mark 2 coaches.
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- Transport Coordinator
- Posts: 280
- Joined: 14 Jul 2008 13:52
- Location: Padova (Italy)
About tracks, thanks. I always try to utilise my tracks to the fullest. Very rarely do I have to jump up to 4-track. Sometimes 3 track when there are trains of different speeds or assymetric traffic.
I have connected Acchester (2 c's, I just went a bit nuts on it before) - screenshots to come with one of the next batches and Nanthead will be connected soon, but I have one other plan first.
I'm trying to play with paxdest at the moment, which is the main reason for not connecting Nanthead yet.
With godingney I'm trying to keep it generally realistic - with one train station for anything other than a huge city, and not forcing my passengers to cross the city too much. Plus it's more fun to try to cram things in - means I have to get my timing better on those lines (and the re-marshalling of new and old trains into longer units, instead of just cloning existing units). When I run out of space I might have to think about that as a solution.
I guess my style is "realistic where possible" but trying to keep up with what I have available.
More shots on the way
With the station extended to allow for two bay platforms (kept distinct from those for the intercity services) the new tracks are to be serviced by the cheapest trains available - AudiRail is still in debt - Class 142 DMUs. The first two examples, 14202 and 142002, are essentiall buses with buffers and will provide a frequent, if uncomfortable, service to Accdon and Sendale. Initially single tracked with passing loops outside each station, the new stations are all 2-platform (partially to allow trains to be cleaned away from the cramped Godingney area.
To build the new class 142s, and allow easy movement and storage of rolling stock, a new works was built at Trehall near Accdon. This small works will be the likely source of most of the company's DMU units of the near future, leaving the main works at Acchester (currently under rennovation) to continue building mainline stock. It is currently also building some rolling stock for a planned steel line!
With these lines put quickly into operation, we swiftly moved on (while the shareholders were busy with the champagne) onto the next phase of the expansion of the network.
- The switch just outside Godingney, allowing use of either platform to both lines, although it's unlikely two trains will arrive from the same direction at once currently. In shot is 142002 with the service to Sendale
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- The sister of the above train, 142001 with the late evening service to Accdon passes the new works at Trehall (visible are some hoppers under construction)
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- First of the new stations, 142001 pulls into Accdon, a sparse station with minimal facilities.
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Sendale is built in the spirit of Accdon, with minimal facilitie. Thanks to the proximity of the station to the town centre in both cases, customers don't seem to mind too much.
Acchester works post expansion is now able to cope with the production of mainline rolling stock and locomotives, a welcome step up from the purchased and leased models from other sources. It also allows for greater maintenance "in house". Its first task was to renew the old 47 coal train, which now consists of three class 59s, but a much longer train. Although more expensive to run, we feel it is beneficial in terms of both increased speed (especiall climbing out of the mines) and increased capacity.
Finally for now, both the Accdale and Sendale lines proved fairly popular with customers, and soon each paid for the construction of another 142 per line (built at Trehall as planned) and the double tracking of large sections of each line to reduce waiting. The construction of the new class 142s and scheduled maintenance of most mainline models prompted a livery change to be performed on the entire fleet, completed over the course of 6 months while various trains were refurbished. This also resulted in the rather strange sight of spare class 47s standing in for pacer 142s on the Sendale and Accdon lines. Passengers were undecided over whether the old mark2 coaches or the new but atrocious pacers were worse for comfort, but all agreed the faster service was a plus.
- 142002 pulls into Sendale
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- The completed works at Acchester
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- Class 142 models 001 and 003 pass with an up and down service, respectively. Each show off their new liveries.
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The route was chosen mainly on financial reasons, the two towns (Tradingport Beeches and Charburg) to be connected have little industry of their own, and we aim to take a big bite of the large proportion of residents who commute daily to Dunhead. As such we will be using the new breed of Multiple unit. In this case the class 321. With its "hop on, hop off" style layout, turnaround at stations should be quite fast, and the train itself has an impressive top speed.
Below is the development of the line. It was found to be fairly easy to build with no snags. The ground was flat and open, greatly facilitating speedy construction, although the southern approach to Tradingport Beeches is slow, and should be improved in the near future.
One extra platform at Dunhead enough to cope with the extra two trains currently by the new line, but is now pushing the station's capacity with 9 trains total using the station, and set to grow. Initially two class 321's (321001 and 321002, naturally) will be used for the route, with two double-units planned (321003 marshalled with 005, and 004 with 006) for the expected passenger growth. Once these trains are running, we may marshall units 001 and 002 together to reduce the frequency on the line. Although unpopular with passengers, it is likely to be necessary to reduce congestion in the station and on the CML.
In other network news, the intercity class 43s are reaching the end of the test period. It has been very successful and we are likely to convert the entire 47 fleet (currently numbering 7) to the HST as the next phase of rolling stock development at Acchester works.
- 321001 at Dunhead after the opening of the temporary platform 3. Also in shot is 125001, the intercity test unit and 47006, a loco-hauled mail train.
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- Passing over the new switch to the north of Dunhead, after the now busy Nanthead corridor
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- The first two class 321s to run the line, on their maiden runs through Tradingport beeches (the intermediate station) are units 001 and 002
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To which note, a new yard had been constructed at Charberg. With various different sheds and ample track space, it is designed for the construction of MU's (specifically EMUs, although it could be retrofitted to be able to overhaul diesel engines) It is currently used for storage of spare passenger rolling stock, although the company has just purchased "Coppernob" http://www.nrm.org.uk/collections/loco/coppernob.asp. It has been completely rennovated in order to run heritage excursions accross the region. Fortunately this endeavour was heavily subsidised by the local tourism board and heritage charities. AudiTrans considers itself proud to own and run such an extroadinary locomotive.
As mentioned, the upgrade of the ageing class 47 stock to class 37 "HST" units has been completed. Taking only four short months thanks to the facilities at Acchester, the 6 "Intercity 125" sets are running to a much tighter timetable than the old 47s. The 6 trains are doing the work of what was previously 8 47-hauled rakes. Unfortunately their efficiency is being held up by the final stretches of single-track working of the CML, and the heavily congested Dunhead terminus. The upgrade of the CML and Dunhead has been set as very high priority.
- An empty Charburg station, with Coppernob and Charburg Works just visible
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- 321002 passes Charburg Works at full speed. Coppernob always a source of wonderment for children on the train.
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- 125005 (up) and 125001 (down) pass near the power station, with a passing speed of almost 250mph!
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Work was immediately set to expanding the station to 6 platfoms. It is likely that some of these will be converted to through platforms in futre, but for now bays are all that's required.
Also this month it was decided that the coal train near Acchester was causing too many delays, especially since the InterCity125s were running at much higher speeds through the area than the old class 47s. Since only one train operates the route, it was decided that a dedicated line could be put in. Runing underneath the CML, this line has drastically reduced congestion at the junction, where the coal train could sometimes block two mail trains and two passenger expresses.
While Dunhead was causing delays on the line anyway, the company decided that we may aswell have a week of havoc instead of two weeks of mayhem, and carried out some upgrades of the trackwork outside Godingney and on the station itself. The station was expanded to three main-line platforms (in addition to the two local platforms) and the entrance vastly improved to allow better throughput.
The combination of the works at the two stations, plus the reduction of delays at Acchester, has improved average journey times on the CML by a whopping 20 minutes since the introduction of the HST units.
- 125001,003 and 006 sit in Dunhead woods ready to begin their journey up the CML, while the newly purchased 321004/6 and 003/5 units await their first runs along the new charberg line.
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- The coal train, a mail train and an early-morning high speed express pass between the power station and coal mines.
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- Stage one of the improvements at Godingney is complete, as 125003 and 142002 sit in the bays. Trackwork will continue outside the station in the next few weeks.
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A busy day on something resembling the West Coast Main Line, featuring a lost Class 222 and the Class 89 Badger on it's first railtour after returning to mainline service
(I do have a somewhat more recent thread, but it turned into a bit of a nonsense with someone else bumping it randomly and so I figured this was as good a place as any to throw a random screenshot, rather than having two "Audigex's screenshot" threads in my history)
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