Operations at Grand River Junction
By Alfred Barten
A busy day at Grand River station.
GRAND RIVER JUNCTION was designed to demonstrate the use of Portals and iPortals. It also works as a standalone module that will keep you busy switching cars and monitoring train movements indefinitely.
The layout is set in the mountainous northwest of US or Canada, sometime in the late 1950s to early 1970s, though you could certainly use other time periods by choosing the appropriate rolling stock. The principal activity is switching the local industries and interchanging with local mixed freights that pass through. The module includes interactive industries and passenger station.
GRJ is available for free download at the Trainz Download Station (DLS) and at the VR Downloads page. All dependent assets are built into TRS2006 or are available at the DLS. GRJ requires TRS2006 and Service Pack SP-1 be installed.
The module is accompanied by one session, Local Freight, which takes some explaining to understand its workings and to be able to modify it to your likes. Much of what makes GRJ interesting is the AI (artificial intelligence) capabilities and interactive industries. Figures 1-4 show the basic features accompanied by brief explanations. Later, I’ll show how the session works and how you can modify it.
The module is based around the Grand River station between the Grand River and the edge of town (figure 1). The station includes a siding for what has become a limited passenger service handled by lone Budd RDCs (Rail Diesel Cars). Connected to the same siding are three industries: a grain elevator, furniture manufacturing plant (Woodstuff) and factory (Franks).
Figure 1. Railroad-related buildings.
The grain elevator collects grain from regional farmers and loads it into covered hopper cars. The grain elevator is not interactive, so it doesn’t matter what capabilities the hopper cars have or don’t have.
The furniture factory receives lumber loaded on flatcars and ships out crates of furniture loaded on the same flatcars. These activities are interactive, so the flatcars used need to have interactive capabilities.
The factory receives coal, which it shares with the furniture factory. Coal is brought in by loaded open hopper cars, which are emptied by the industry. These cars must also be interactive.
The engine house has diesel fuel storage tanks for the locomotives. These are supplied by tank cars, which do not need to be interactive.
The station has the potential for dynamic passenger loading/unloading, but is not used as such because the RDC cars do not have the capability.
Multiple-Industry basic 1 is used to load flatcars on eastbound trains after they leave Portal WB (figure 3). Multiple-Industry basic 2 and 3 are not used, but are available for other sessions if you choose to use them.
Figure 2. Interactive features.
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Article and screen shots ©2007 Alfred Barten. All rights reserved.
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