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Switch list Vs Waybills

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Frank Rosenbaum

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Apr 19, 2020, 2:35:18 PM4/19/20
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I am setting up operations and would like to know, if you operate your railroad using switch lists or waybills, or nothing at all, and why you use one over the other. Both seem very labor intensive. Are they worth the effort?

Dale Arends

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Apr 19, 2020, 2:54:08 PM4/19/20
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Frank Rosenbaum <frankro...@gmail.com> wrote in
news:9c072416-d704-4bdd...@googlegroups.com:
When I don't free-run the trains, I use a switch list for my small N scale
layout. I decided on it since I genreally run solo. With a switch list I
can take as much time as I want before moving a car. If you plan on having
more than one operator, waybills often work better since things are often
timing dependent (have to pick up a car before others can be dropped onto
the siding.)

--
Dale M. Arends


--
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Frank Rosenbaum

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Apr 19, 2020, 3:05:06 PM4/19/20
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On Sunday, April 19, 2020 at 1:54:08 PM UTC-5, Dale Arends wrote:
> Frank Rosenbaum wrote in
Thank you Dale, for the quick response. How many industries do you have? My HO railroad is around the walls in a full footprint basement so it is fairly large. I have the ability to keep 7 operators busy, even though I am alone.

Robert Heller

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Apr 19, 2020, 4:32:14 PM4/19/20
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The Model Railroad System (https://www.deepsoft.com/ModelRailroadSystem)
includes a program called "Freight Car Forwarder". This program uses a
database (in flat text files) that represent your railroad, its yards and
industries, trains, and cars, and generates switch lists that will get the
proper cars to the proper places on the proper trains. (It actually simulate a
run shift.) You run the program and then print out the switch lists it
generates. You can carry the switch list with you as you operate the train
around the layout. Also included are switch lists [yard lists?] for the yard
master(s) to put together trains at the source yards, so the trains can be
made up properly, with the cars in the proper order and blocking. The computer
does all of the "mindless" work, so you can do the "fun" part running trains
and switching cars along the way.

>

--
Robert Heller -- 978-544-6933 Cell: 413-658-7953 GV: 978-633-5364
Deepwoods Software -- Download the Model Railroad System
http://www.deepsoft.com/ -- Binaries for Linux, MS-Windows, and MacOSX
hel...@deepsoft.com -- http://www.deepsoft.com/ModelRailroadSystem/

Frank Rosenbaum

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Apr 19, 2020, 5:52:00 PM4/19/20
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Thank you for your reply. I am currently using Easy Model Railroad Inventory. I have found that making a switch list is done manually, one car at a time. Does the Model Railroad System have that limitation? I can export all the data to an excel file. Can MRS Import that? Does it also have the ability to print waybills?

Again, thanks for the reply.
Frank
FAR Seas Connecting Railroad

Robert Heller

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Apr 19, 2020, 8:02:27 PM4/19/20
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At Sun, 19 Apr 2020 14:51:59 -0700 (PDT) Frank Rosenbaum <frankro...@gmail.com> wrote:

>
> On Sunday, April 19, 2020 at 3:32:14 PM UTC-5, Robert Heller wrote:
> > At Sun, 19 Apr 2020 11:35:17 -0700 (PDT) Frank Rosenbaum <frankrosenbaum4=
> @gmail.com> wrote:
> >=20
> > >=20
> > > I am setting up operations and would like to know, if you operate your
> > > railroad using switch lists or waybills, or nothing at all, and why you=
> use
> > > one over the other. Both seem very labor intensive. Are they worth the
> > > effort?
> >=20
> > The Model Railroad System (https://www.deepsoft.com/ModelRailroadSystem)
> > includes a program called "Freight Car Forwarder". This program uses a
> > database (in flat text files) that represent your railroad, its yards and
> > industries, trains, and cars, and generates switch lists that will get th=
> e
> > proper cars to the proper places on the proper trains. (It actually simul=
> ate a
> > run shift.) You run the program and then print out the switch lists it
> > generates. You can carry the switch list with you as you operate the trai=
> n
> > around the layout. Also included are switch lists [yard lists?] for the y=
> ard
> > master(s) to put together trains at the source yards, so the trains can b=
> e
> > made up properly, with the cars in the proper order and blocking. The com=
> puter
> > does all of the "mindless" work, so you can do the "fun" part running tra=
> ins
> > and switching cars along the way.
> >=20
> > > =20
> >=20
> > --=20
> > Robert Heller -- 978-544-6933 Cell: 413-658-7953 GV: 978-633-=
> 5364
> > Deepwoods Software -- Download the Model Railroad System
> > http://www.deepsoft.com/ -- Binaries for Linux, MS-Windows, and MacOSX
> > hel...@deepsoft.com -- http://www.deepsoft.com/ModelRailroadSystem/
>
> Thank you for your reply. I am currently using Easy Model Railroad Inventor=
> y. I have found that making a switch list is done manually, one car at a ti=
> me. Does the Model Railroad System have that limitation? I can export all t=
> he data to an excel file. Can MRS Import that? Does it also have the abilit=
> y to print waybills?

Model Railroad System computes the complete switch list automagically for
every train and yard lists for every yard. It uses a "database" (a bunch of
flat text files) that describe your railroad: its divisions, stations,
industries & yards, trains, and cars. Industries are marked with the kinds of
cars they unload and load, cars are marked by type, whether they are loaded or
unloaded, and where they are on the railroad, how long they are, their
clearance plate, weight (loaded and unloaded), and length. Industries also are
marked with how long their siding is and yards are also marked with a siding
length. Trains are marked with things like max length, clearence plate, max
weight, etc. The program goes through the list of cars, finding cars that need
to go someplace -- eg a loaded lumber car needs to go to a lumber yard or at
least some place that could use a load of lumber. An empty grain hopper needs
to get to a grain elevator, etc. It then figures out which train or trains
will get the car to where it needs to go. Maybe on a local yard job to get in
from an industry siding to a yard where it can be added to a regular freight
train to be hauled to another yard where another local yard job will haul it
to its destination. It adds the car to the switch list(s) for the trains
and/or yards involved. Eventually the switch lists and yard lists are complete
and are printed out, ready for your operators to use as they operate their
trains. It essentually simulates one shift of operation. It does not print
waybills.

The car data file is (effectively) a CSV file, with a header containing the
max car count. Actually all of the data files are effectively CSV files, in
that they are lines of comma separated data -- originally meant for being read
by a BASIC program. So if your data is in excel, it should be possible to do
some data manipulation and then exported as a CSV file. It may need some post
processing. There are some sample data file sets that are well documented that
should help you out.

>
> Again, thanks for the reply.
> Frank
> FAR Seas Connecting Railroad
>

Dale Arends

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Apr 20, 2020, 2:32:55 PM4/20/20
to
Frank Rosenbaum <frankro...@gmail.com> wrote in
news:4dffca13-8988-4a09...@googlegroups.com:

> On Sunday, April 19, 2020 at 1:54:08 PM UTC-5, Dale Arends wrote:
>> Frank Rosenbaum wrote in
>> news:9c072416-d704-4bdd...@googlegroups.com:
>>
>> > I am setting up operations and would like to know, if you operate
>> > your railroad using switch lists or waybills, or nothing at all,
>> > and why you use one over the other. Both seem very labor intensive.
>> > Are they worth the effort?
>> >
>>
>> When I don't free-run the trains, I use a switch list for my small N
>> scale layout. I decided on it since I genreally run solo. With a
>> switch list I can take as much time as I want before moving a car. If
>> you plan on having more than one operator, waybills often work better
>> since things are often timing dependent (have to pick up a car before
>> others can be dropped onto the siding.)
>>
>> --
>> Dale M. Arends
>>
>
> Thank you Dale, for the quick response. How many industries do you
> have? My HO railroad is around the walls in a full footprint basement
> so it is fairly large. I have the ability to keep 7 operators busy,
> even though I am alone.
>
>

When I said "small" I meant small. It's a 2 ft x 4 ft layout with 4
industries and a team track. I don't think the size of the layout should
be a factor; rather, the number of simultaneous jobs. Since a switch list
is typically a series of sequential jobs, it works well for a single
operator. With multiple operators, waybills work well since there can be
several jobs being done at once while still having the occasional
dependency.

--
Dale M. Arends

Polls show that 6 of the 7 dwarfs are not Happy.

Frank Rosenbaum

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Apr 24, 2020, 7:33:00 PM4/24/20
to
On Sunday, April 19, 2020 at 1:35:18 PM UTC-5, Frank Rosenbaum wrote:
> I am setting up operations and would like to know, if you operate your railroad using switch lists or waybills, or nothing at all, and why you use one over the other. Both seem very labor intensive. Are they worth the effort?

Ok. I've downloaded the Model Railroad System for Win32 zip complete. I even installed it, I think. I am a technological nincompoop. There was no Icon on my desktop, It did not offer to open the program, and I could not find a .exe file to launch the program.

What do I do?
Please be very specific

Robert Heller

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Apr 24, 2020, 9:14:54 PM4/24/20
to
At Fri, 24 Apr 2020 16:32:58 -0700 (PDT) Frank Rosenbaum <frankro...@gmail.com> wrote:

>
> On Sunday, April 19, 2020 at 1:35:18 PM UTC-5, Frank Rosenbaum wrote:
> > I am setting up operations and would like to know, if you operate your ra=
> ilroad using switch lists or waybills, or nothing at all, and why you use o=
> ne over the other. Both seem very labor intensive. Are they worth the effor=
> t?
>
> Ok. I've downloaded the Model Railroad System for Win32 zip complete. I eve=
> n installed it, I think. I am a technological nincompoop. There was no Icon=
> on my desktop, It did not offer to open the program, and I could not find =
> a .exe file to launch the program.=20

If you ran the setup.exe program in the ZIP file it should have asked for a
folder to install into. In that folder there will be a folder named bin. In
this folder are a collection of .exe files. The Model Railroad System is not
one single program, but a collection of programs in the bin folder and
libraries in the lib folder [.dlls] and under the share folder [Tcl source
libraries], with documentation also under the share folder. One of the .exe
files in the bin folder is FCFMain.exe. This is the Freight Car Forwarder.
There is also a program named FCFCreate.exe which is a program that will
create a set of data files for the Freight Car Forwarder.

Also in the complete Win32 zip file are a couple of sample data sets,
ChesapeakeSystem.zip and LHandBS.zip, which you could have also installed.
These two zip files each contain a complete set of datafiles for the Freight
Car Forwarder, with the ChesapeakeSystem.zip file containing a sample dataset
used by the original BASIC version and LHandBS.zip contains a simpler dataset
for my railroad (not built yet).

>
> What do I do?
> Please be very specific
>

Frank Rosenbaum

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Apr 24, 2020, 9:36:52 PM4/24/20
to
On Sunday, April 19, 2020 at 1:35:18 PM UTC-5, Frank Rosenbaum wrote:
> I am setting up operations and would like to know, if you operate your railroad using switch lists or waybills, or nothing at all, and why you use one over the other. Both seem very labor intensive. Are they worth the effort?

Well, I got a response when I went to the bin folder.Is there a single file that will run the whole program?
I have opened several of the files, but everything is grayed out and would not respond. When I opened FCFmain the only function I could do was open. Nothing else worked. I just tried to open a library and got Error: _40d09307_p_fcfSupport_System{Error readi...
Here is the Log report:
_40d09307_p_FCFSupport__System {Error reading C:\mrrsystem-2.1.44\bin\libttclasses.dll -- short file (TrainsFile)!}
_40d09307_p_FCFSupport__System {Error reading C:\mrrsystem-2.1.44\bin\libttclasses.dll -- short file (TrainsFile)!}
while executing
"System TheSystem [file nativename "$fileName"] [MakeSeed]"
(procedure "LoadSystem" line 11)
invoked from within
"LoadSystem"
invoked from within
".main.topf.tb0.open invoke "
invoked from within
".main.topf.tb0.open instate !disabled { .main.topf.tb0.open invoke } "
invoked from within
".main.topf.tb0.open instate pressed { .main.topf.tb0.open state !pressed; .main.topf.tb0.open instate !disabled { .main.topf.tb0.open invoke } } "
(command bound to event)

Robert Heller

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Apr 24, 2020, 10:56:01 PM4/24/20
to
At Fri, 24 Apr 2020 18:36:51 -0700 (PDT) Frank Rosenbaum <frankro...@gmail.com> wrote:

>
> On Sunday, April 19, 2020 at 1:35:18 PM UTC-5, Frank Rosenbaum wrote:
> > I am setting up operations and would like to know, if you operate your ra=
> ilroad using switch lists or waybills, or nothing at all, and why you use o=
> ne over the other. Both seem very labor intensive. Are they worth the effor=
> t?
>
> Well, I got a response when I went to the bin folder.Is there a single file=
> that will run the whole program?

There isn't *one* program, there are a collection of different programs that
do different things. Some programs are "offline": Freight Car Forwarder and
TimeTable. Some are helper utilites, like Resistor (computes load resistor
values). Others are involved with actual operation (they interact with trains
or accessories -- there is a throttle program for a Lenz XPressNet DCC system,
and programs for OpenLCB/LCC). If you installed the Documentation archive,
there will be a user manual in share/MRRSystem/Doc/UserManual/index.html (HTML
format) and share/MRRSystem/Doc/UserManual.pdf (PDF format), which will
document all of the exe files. There is also a Development archive, which
contains documentation and things like C/C++ header files relating to the
libraries.

> I have opened several of the files, but everything is grayed out and would
> not respond. When I opened FCFmain the only function I could do was open. N=

That is correct. The FCFmain program needs a "data set" to work with. It can't
actually do anything without data to work with. The data set is a batch of 8
data files containing information that describe your railroad (its divisions,
stations, industuries and yards, trains, and cars). The data files are all
actually just text files and you *could* create them with a text editor, like
NotePad, but make sure that they are saved as plain 7-bit ASCII text files.
Most of the data is actually formatted as comma separated data, so you
possibly could create the files with Excel, but again be careful to be sure
the files are saved as 7-bit ASCII text files. Also since the files are not
really spreadsheet files, there might be some issues there. I've always used a
plain text editor (MicroEMacs) to edit the files. The Freight Car Forwarder
only re-writes the cars and stats files. The other files are only ever read in
by the FCFmain program -- that is all other other files are static readonly
data and are used by the Freight Car Forwarder in its processing to determine
where cars can go and which trains can get them there.

The FCFCreate program can be used to create these files (but FCFCreate is a
little funcky and not well tested). There are some sample data sets available.
The *original* one is in ChesapeakeSystem.zip -- this is the data set used by
the original author of the original BASIC program. This is probably a good
data set to work with to get a feel for how the program works. There is
another one, LHandBS.zip which is for my (much smaller) railroad.

The section of the User Manual for the Freight Car Forwarder has a section
that documents the format of the datafiles.

> othing else worked. I just tried to open a library and got Error: _40d09307=
> _p_fcfSupport_System{Error readi...=20
> Here is the Log report:
> _40d09307_p_FCFSupport__System {Error reading C:\mrrsystem-2.1.44\bin\libtt=
> classes.dll -- short file (TrainsFile)!}
> _40d09307_p_FCFSupport__System {Error reading C:\mrrsystem-2.1.44\bin\libtt=
> classes.dll -- short file (TrainsFile)!}
> while executing
> "System TheSystem [file nativename "$fileName"] [MakeSeed]"
> (procedure "LoadSystem" line 11)
> invoked from within
> "LoadSystem"
> invoked from within
> ".main.topf.tb0.open invoke "
> invoked from within
> ".main.topf.tb0.open instate !disabled { .main.topf.tb0.open invoke } "
> invoked from within
> ".main.topf.tb0.open instate pressed { .main.topf.tb0.open state !pressed; =
> .main.topf.tb0.open instate !disabled { .main.topf.tb0.open invoke } } "
> (command bound to event)
>

You can't actually *run* the library files. These .dll files are meant to be
be linked to either C++ or loaded into Tcl programs.

Frank Rosenbaum

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Apr 24, 2020, 11:04:52 PM4/24/20
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With the explanations you are giving me, It seems much more complex than I can handle. I don't' think I am able to use the system. I am not adept enough to delve into the program.
Thank you for your assistance.

Frank Rosenbaum

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Apr 24, 2020, 11:21:20 PM4/24/20
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On Sunday, April 19, 2020 at 1:35:18 PM UTC-5, Frank Rosenbaum wrote:
> I am setting up operations and would like to know, if you operate your railroad using switch lists or waybills, or nothing at all, and why you use one over the other. Both seem very labor intensive. Are they worth the effort?


I am now trying to find someway to uninstall the program, and cannot find any way to do so. In Windows - settings - Apps/uninstall, the program does not show up so I can't choose it.
What do I do?

Robert Heller

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Apr 25, 2020, 9:03:46 AM4/25/20
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Just delete the folders and files.
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