Switch Lists

Discussion in 'Model Rail Operations' started by Greg Elems, Feb 11, 2004.

  1. Greg Elems

    Greg Elems Member

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    Boy am I glad to see this forum. If I can indulge you MRR operators, I would like to post some comments on what we use on the UP.

    On the UP we have several versions of lists. One is a train consist list. Another is a track list, yard track or industry. And the third list is more of a work order.

    On a train consist, the cars are listed rear to front from the top. This is a hold over from the days we ran with cabooses. The track list can be generated either west to east on top or east to west on top. The work order lists cars to be pulled and a separate one lists cars to be spotted. It has been some time but a combination of train consist and work order used to be used and may still be used. Basically these had a spot to mark the time the work was done. Yes we carried a lot of paper on the real railroad.

    On a train consist the car information usually has a destination listed, empty or load, and hazmat info (if necessary). Not in that order. When we build a train, we try to block it. What that means is, group all cars for the same location in station order. That makes it easy to work the train enroute.

    Once a set out has been made, the local yards again switch the cars as needed for their purposes.

    This is when the track list comes into play. We get a new list of a track that has all the cars in it. With that list we can tell where the cars go. They may be going out to industries or have come back from industries and need to be switched for their next destinations.

    The work order deals with each industry. It lists cars at each spot. Each industry has a track number and spot numbers. When you look at them, you must decipher which cars stay and which cars come out. Also you must decide where the cars go and which spots are empty.

    I'm sure I've missed something here. No one list can really do the whole job. Depending on the job at hand we more than likely have a specific list to do the work. I will be happy to try and elaborate on this, so if you have questions ask away. :D

    Greg Elems
  2. TR-Flyer

    TR-Flyer Member

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    Hi Greg:
    Just found this post, guess i missed it when it was originally posted. Questions:

    Is the track list generated by the industry and given to you when you make the pickup?

    Do you modify the train consist list as you go through the run?

    Are the work orders generated by the industries? And why doesn't the train consist list take care of the set out order?

    I take it, the "switch lists" i've read about kinda "overlay" these lists and define how the consist must be run along the route?

    Thanks,
    Ted
  3. Greg Elems

    Greg Elems Member

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    Hi Ted,

    I will try to answer your questions. If it gets more confusing then reask it and I will try to do a better job. :D

    >Is the track list generated by the industry and given to you when you make the pickup?
    No, the industry list is generated by the railroad. The industry calls the service center to request cars and release cars on spot. When the cars are on spot, they are either getting loaded or unloaded. The service center for the UP is in St. Louise.

    >Do you modify the train consist list as you go through the run?
    The train list gets changed every time we stop to do work. Either from set outs or pick-ups. We have work orders that reflect the work done on line.

    >Are the work orders generated by the industries?
    Work orders are the papers we get at the start of the shift. They are generated by the service center. Train consists are generated either by a yard master or St. Louise, depending on where the crew goes to work.

    >And why doesn't the train consist list take care of the set out order?
    The consist takes care of listing cars, for hazardous materials and destination. A detailed train list will tell where the car goes and the work order tells the spot number where it is to be placed.

    >I take it, the "switch lists" i've read about kinda "overlay" these lists and define how the consist must be run along the route?
    Switch lists usually are for yard crews. We use them to try and put the local’s cars in order of work. We use the lists to separate the cars to the tracks with like cars of the same destination.
  4. TR-Flyer

    TR-Flyer Member

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    Thanks Greg:

    So at an operating session, someone operating a switcher in a yard could be given a switch list to use in setting up consists?

    Is this sort of thing also used at interchange yards?
  5. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

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    Thanks for the info Greg!