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Thread: Prairie State Railroad Company

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    Default PSRC

    Ed,This sounds great! Keep the rest of us (including the Illini) informed. And welcome to nScale.net.
    oldcook43

    Still a kid at heart!

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    Default Update on the Prairie State Railroad

    It has been quite a while since I was on this site and a lot has transpired since then.

    The motive power fleet for the PSRC is essentially in hand (only needing a few extra engines to have every assigned engine to the district). I have also created timetable schedule grids for the trains scheduled to run in a 24 hour period.

    The PSRC will be an around the room continuous spiral, with almost 10 scale miles of mainline within a 16x17 foot room. It will be a narrow shelf (essentially only the ROW will be modeled).

    Quite a few people have told me this will not work. Some of the heavyweights in this hobby say otherwise. Both Tony Koester and Bill Darnaby both said it could be done. It was Darnaby's Maumee Route that really got me going to design the PSRC.

    Benchwork will be shelf brackets on tracks sunk into the drywall, supporting a 1/2 inch plywood subbase and at least 2 inches of extruded foam insulation board. Track will be Atlas code 55 (I do not have the problems many cry about as I was converting to low profile wheels years before this track came out). The track will be laid on Woodland Scenics track bed.

    The layout will be controlled by CVP Products EasyDCC system with wireless throttles. I will be using the throttle that I used when I was active with AustNtrak down in Texas, albeit updated.

    The Prairie State is set in far Southern Illinois in late 1955 so I can still run primarily a steam powered railroad. Most of the northern end of the PSRC is dieselized by this date. The layout will depict the Egyptian District of the Southern Division. The layout will be operatred by timetable and train order operation. I have train orders printed up for this project as well as switch lists, clearance forms and will be using car cards. It will be a pretty involved operation, not for the light model railroader. Being a professional railroader myself, just running trains doesn't cut it for me anymore.

    Construction of this layout should begin in the spring. It has been a lot of work and fun to design and research things for this ficticious railroad. Essentially taking a ficticious idea and attempting to make a believeable idea out of it.

    Diesel power is evident on the PSRC, but most of it is north of this district. All diesel power on the PSRC is built by American Locomotive (ALCO). You will not see any EMD junk lettered for the PSRC due to a disagreement between EMD and the PSRC Mechanical Department that sent the EMD demonstrator and their salesman packing, giving ALCO the order.

    I have almost daily updates on this project in the Yahoo group for the Prairie State:

    http://www.groups.yahoo.com/group/pr...ailroadcompany

    I do not get on the internet as much as I would like to go to all these great sites, but I update my yahoo group almost daily. Feel free to join up to learn more about this interesting project.

    Always something going on at the workbench.

    Edward Bridges
    President & CEO
    Prairie State Railroad
    Conductor & Company Historian
    Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railroad
    Marion, Illinois
    Edward Bridges
    President & CEO
    Prairie State Railroad (model)
    Trainmaster, Conductor & Company Historian
    Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railway, a division of Progressive Rail (prototype)
    Marion, Illinois

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    Quote Originally Posted by COERfan View Post
    It has been quite a while since I was on this site and a lot has transpired since then. ...
    Yep, over two years! Welcome back!

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    Well, its been a long time coming, but I believe we are finally going to get the project moving again after several failed attempts and other things beyond my control (a little thing called life). It's been a while since I had posted here, but I now own my own computer and we have most of the assigned motive power on hand for this project.

    The project is still in the infrastructure phase, but we have the insulation on site and drywall to follow shortly. Now, if Atlas would produce more of their code 55 track, this railroad could be built to completion. The layout will contain just short of 7 scale miles (yes, I said SEVEN) of mainline trackage in a 16' x 17' groom, wrapped around the walls and a peninsula and will be used to represent a 100 mile district from Mount Vernon, Illinois to Cairo, Illinois and will be set in late fall 1955. Steam will rule the high iron on this railroad, but diesels are on the horizon (Alco's RS-11 will decimate the steam fleet in 1956-57, but we aren't modeling that era just yet, I prefer steam to diesel).

    Currently, there are three of us local people firmly committed to this project and would welcome others as it will take a crew of about 6 to 8 to operate this railroad once its completed (I know of about 5 other local guys who are interested). Timetable and train order operation in dark territory is how it will be operated. I almost have the 'greatly simplified' rule book ready to publish and already have quite a few train order forms on hand. Looking at using waybill cards much like Tony Thompson uses on his layout (very realistic looking waybills I might add). It won't be as bad as some would think.

    No computers, no electronic gadgets, just bare bones railroading just like it was in 1955 in this area for a small railroad like this.
    Edward Bridges
    President & CEO
    Prairie State Railroad (model)
    Trainmaster, Conductor & Company Historian
    Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railway, a division of Progressive Rail (prototype)
    Marion, Illinois

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    Default

    It's nice to hear progress is happening. Post pics as things come together!
    Karl

    CEO of the Skally Line, an Eastern MN Shortline

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    I do have some videos we put together of the full size mock up:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2UHwQG3PQlw

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ryz-vnMSblo

    Enjoy! We built the full size mock up to see if it could actually be built and work. We did run some trains on it and yes, those Bachmann locomotives WOULD pull the grade!
    Edward Bridges
    President & CEO
    Prairie State Railroad (model)
    Trainmaster, Conductor & Company Historian
    Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railway, a division of Progressive Rail (prototype)
    Marion, Illinois

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    Edward Bridges
    President & CEO
    Prairie State Railroad (model)
    Trainmaster, Conductor & Company Historian
    Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railway, a division of Progressive Rail (prototype)
    Marion, Illinois

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    The evolution of the layout design:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wTVD6qkAMM

    In this video you can see how the design changed as influenced by several other modelers input, namely Tony Koester, Bill Darnaby, Dave Clemens among others.
    Edward Bridges
    President & CEO
    Prairie State Railroad (model)
    Trainmaster, Conductor & Company Historian
    Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railway, a division of Progressive Rail (prototype)
    Marion, Illinois

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    Here is a link to my Facebook group that deals exclusively with this project:

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/174193142712466/
    Edward Bridges
    President & CEO
    Prairie State Railroad (model)
    Trainmaster, Conductor & Company Historian
    Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railway, a division of Progressive Rail (prototype)
    Marion, Illinois

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    A little update on the goings-on here with this project.

    We have made the decision to go with the NCE DCC system instead of the CVP Products system.

    The Yahoo group was moved to Facebook as I parted ways with Yahoo a while back (the group is still there, but dormant at the moment).

    In the motive power department, we have most of the 20 assigned steam locomotives on hand (17 of the 20, plus two unassigned) and we have factory undecorated shells for the passenger diesels (5 Alco PA-1s and two EMD E-9s--the E-9s were wreck replacements in mid 1954 for two destroyed PA-1s, which Alco quit producing in December 1953). We also have a few complete diesel locomotives on hand: 2 Atlas F-M H16-44s, 3 Bachmann Alco S-4 switchers, 1 Bachmann GE 44 ton switcher.

    Working on all sorts of things here for this project. The Facebook group keeps everything up to date in a timely manner.
    Edward Bridges
    President & CEO
    Prairie State Railroad (model)
    Trainmaster, Conductor & Company Historian
    Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railway, a division of Progressive Rail (prototype)
    Marion, Illinois

  13. #11
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    The project got a boost in the motive power department in the way of diesel power: I scored two Alco DL-109s for $55 each (the NH paint will float off nicely in the strip tank) and two factory undecorated F-M H26-66 Train Master diesel locomotives. The Illinois Central tested them through this area in the 1950s, but didn't purchase any.

    The DL-109s will help the Alco PA-1s and the two E-9s in passenger service, while the H26-66s will go into freight service.

    Also got some factory undecorated Fox Valley Models MILW coaches. I already had two, ordered 4 more. These will be used in passenger service along with the mixed bag of heavyweight and lightweight equipment we have on the roster.

    By the middle of July, I should be able to post pictures of the new progress as we push into high gear to get this project moving again.
    Edward Bridges
    President & CEO
    Prairie State Railroad (model)
    Trainmaster, Conductor & Company Historian
    Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railway, a division of Progressive Rail (prototype)
    Marion, Illinois

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