A journal following the history, design, construction and operation of Bernard Kempinski's O Scale model railroad depicting the U. S. Military Railroad (USMRR) Aquia-Falmouth line in 1863, and other model railroad projects.
©Bernard Kempinski All text and images, except as noted, on this blog are copyrighted by the author and may not be used without permission.

September 24, 2022

First Op Session Since COVID

Amby switching the first revenue train at Falmouth

The Aquia Line hosted its first Ops Session since the start of COVID and the expansion of the railroad.  Amby Nangeroni, Leonard White, and Jacob Hol were the gallant volunteer operators. I acted as trouble shooter and official napper.  I maintained a log of problems encountered by the operators.

Leonard and Jacob working number 7 at
Aquia Landing 
The good news is that Fury, with its battery power, operated without trouble. Haupt with DCC and keep alive started off fine at Falmouth but started experiencing  sporadic stalls on the rest of the layout. The trouble was a result of dirty wheels and track as I didn't have time to thoroughly clean them.

The conductors check their paperwork
We also tested Whiton, McCallum and Osceola. We discovered that Whiton's Li-Po battery had popped. Good thing it didn't catch on fire. So I swapped it out and it worked fine. McCallum and Osceola also ran fine in limited testing, but I did spot a broken wire to Osceola's front pilot truck. I will fix that. Osceola is reserved for use by the Commanding General as its pulling power is insufficient for use on regular trains.

Two trains with 10-cars each at Brooke is a problem.
The operators had to saw by using the stub siding

I made a note that all track and engine wheels should be cleaned before the next session. 

We found box car 2429 with tight wheel gauge on the brake truck. Also 1344 needs new trucks, but I know that car was problematic.

The telegraph worked well. Once the engines were on the road, the messages were fairly constant. I may need a dispatcher as an active job in future ops sessions.  

Having meets with two 10 car trains at Brooke is a problem. The siding isn't long enough. Today the crews had to saw-by each other. The ultimate solution would due to extend the siding, but that would be difficult in the current track plan.  The short term solution is to move the meet to Stonemans. 

Amby runs the first revenue train over the new expansion
All in all the session went pretty well.  I need to clean the track and wheels better before the next session. Thanks for my gallant helpers. Thanks also to Alicia for making some great Ghirardelli chocolate brownies.

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