Saturday, March 30, 2013

More Operational Interest with the Hospital Train

The hospital train pulls into the yard.

Earlier this month, I wrote about adding a hospital train to the Manitoba & Minnesota Sub.--a train made up of locomotives and rolling stock headed for repair, to museums or to the scrapper.

At first, the train just made a regular appearance on the layout, passing through from east to west. Then I realized I could do more with it--give it more operational value.

It drops off the items for the museum.

As I wrote about earlier, I added a railway museum to the town of Turney on the upper level. The former freight house is home to a collection of railway ephemera, including an old caboose, and SD40-2 (in classic maroon and grey), a 40-foot boxcar and an old passenger car. (A different assortment than that featured in the original post.)

When I made up the hospital train, I took those items from the museum and added them to the train. They looked good running across the layout. But then I thought: Why not have them yarded in Fort Frances and then brought up to Turney by a special movement? And that's what I did.

A special movement takes them west.

Now when the hospital train makes its appearance, we can go back in time like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day,, repeating that day when the various railway items were brought to the museum over and over again.

Almost there . . . .

Yarding the items bound for the museum adds another operational event to the layout--although I have no way of replicating the "big hook" moving the cars and locomotive from the siding to the museum trackage. That's what hands are for!

In the siding awaiting the crane to
move them to the museum track.

1 comment:

  1. Operational interest for sure, John.

    A couple of thoughts:

    For more operational interest, have a section gang and equipment standing by to install a turnout/shoofly into the Turney museum site upon arrival. This was often done to move long-stuffed-and-mounted steam engines for restoration. \

    Then there's always road cranes positioned for the move from the mainline.

    Other museums like CRHA in Delson had a storage track for equipment to be moved into the main site, (perhaps Turney could have some more off-layout display trackage) or a wooden ramp with transition track so lighter equipment brought in on flat cars could be unloaded down guide rails onto the museum trackage.

    Either way, long live the hospital train! Be sure to check out John Sutherland's great photos of some of the Service equipment in my third Trackside Treasure post on the train.