coke plants

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by csxengineer, Apr 7, 2006.

  1. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member

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    Since walthers won't make their coke works in N scale, I have to scratchbuild one. Any online suggestions? I am not even sure how they work, whats a battery? For mine, coal will come in via barge & conveyors, and leave in hoppers. which tracks do I need to model?
  2. inkaneer

    inkaneer Member

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    Well for starters coke is only 80% as dense as coal so hoppers with extended sides are used to bring the load up to the load capacity of the car. The coke is cooked in ovens with out the presence of Oxygen so no combustion can occur. The process drives of all the impurities which are captured if they have any market value. Those that don't are burnt off. The cooking process for coke is similar to the refining of oil into gasoline. The end result is a pure carbon product used in blast furnaces to make pig iron. The ovens are lined up side by side. A series of these is called a battery. The ovens are usually elevated above the RR cars and at the end of the process the coke which is red hot is pushed by a ram out of the oven into the cars all the whole it is sprayed with water to cool it and quench any fire. The cooled coke kas the same color as the graphite lead in a pencil. The oven is loaded [charged] through the top by a "larry" car which holds a premeasured amount of coal enough to fill the oven. The oven is then sealed and the coal is then baked for about 24 hours to form coke. A complete coke works is an intricate network of ovens, piping, conveyors, storage tanks, supply piles . Modeling one would be a chore to say the least. I have seen a couple in HO scale. They were greatly simplified and were basically kits made by Walther's.
  3. 2-8-2

    2-8-2 Member

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  4. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member

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    Wall

    The first thing I did was take a bunch of pics. This one I used for modelling the river wall. Unfortunately, Clairton Coke was te worlds largest coke plant, and compressing it down to 5' x 2' will be a chore & 1/2!! I don't know what all to make, so I'll probably just go with structures that stand out.

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  5. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member

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    wall done

    Wall is mostly done. I placed some misc structures to see how much room I have. The wall is 2" thick pink foam, cut at a slight angle, then I cut out the barge tie ups, and painted it with white latex primer. While the paint was wet, I dipped my foam brush into different shades of chalk and weathered it.

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  6. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member

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    another pic

    Lots of conveyors

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  7. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member

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    coal storage?

    It looks like I could use walthers golden flame coal or ADM silos for the coal storage building (left side of pic), Any advise?

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  8. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member

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    Where to start?

    Any ideas on how to make all those conveyors? A problem is going to be coupling/uncoupling cars and derailments under all of them. I still don't have a trackplan for it. Since I am limited on space, I might just have 1 track for loading coke into hoppers, 1 track for loading tank cars with gases, and maybe 1 track for storage/switching. These will connect to a small yard on the left side in front of the mountain.
  9. inkaneer

    inkaneer Member

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    CSX runs on the wrong side of the Mon if you want to see Clairton Works. Unfortunately from the NS side the actual oven batteries are screened from view as well. The USSteel plant security is real touchy about anyone taking pictures around there. But here's a question for you. Does the CSX still use the old P&LE bridge over the Mon to the Clairton works? It doesn't look like it but I still see CSX "Coke Express" hoppers at the Clairton plant on the river side. On the other side [PA Rte 837] one sees only NS "High Top" cars. If the bridge is not used how do those cars get to CSX tracks? Only other way I know is the Union RR to Duquesne and across the Union RR bridge to McKeesport.
  10. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member

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    wylie bridge

    Hi. The bridge at clairton linking the Union to the old P&LE Wylie yard is not used. In fact there are no tracks on the P&LE side connecting it to the CSX Mon branch. We recieve coke at Demmler yard / URR Dexter yard. The coke expresses usually end up on csx coke trains like K387, K385, or on Q353s I believe. Are you from the area?
  11. inkaneer

    inkaneer Member

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    Not sure where Demmler Yard is. I heard of it but its location is not known to me. I have lived in the Mon Valley area all my life and travel the area in my work. In fact I can recall when the Old B&O swung through downtown McKeesport rather than the current routing over the P&LE right of way. It started the curve up the Yough river where the PAT bus station is on Lysle Blvd. and cut diagonally across every street in the downtown area. There is a gate keepers tower remaining on Walnut street and some of the buildings along the old right of way have unusual shapes. The crossings on Lysle Boulevard and Fifth avenue were interesting because of the diamonds there for the streetcar tracks. Traffic was a nightmare when ever a train came through especially when the mill [USS National Tube Works] had a shift change.
  12. csxengineer

    csxengineer Member

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    McKeesport

    Yup, Grandparents & family worked at the National works. (small world) My wife works in the former mill, it is now Dish network call center. If you go over the 837 bridge toward duquense, look down & to the right. The upper yard is Demmler, the lower yard is riverton. Demmler on the west end conects to URR Dexter yard. I am glad McKeesport saved that switch tower. If you don't already have them, go buy Pittsburgh & Lake Erie in color vol 1 & 2. by morning sun books. Outstanding.