NW Indiana PTC project.

Anything pertaining to railfanning in Indiana.
9xs
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 347
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2016 11:37 pm

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by 9xs »

Didn't see much there on Saturday, but best time to check is during a weekday when they may be doing work. Also saw new 458 signals at the underpass, looks like there will be a single crossover at 455 as track 2 has 2 heads and track 1 has only one head for eastward traffic.

Dave

User avatar
justalurker66
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 1518
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:51 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by justalurker66 »

9xs wrote:Didn't see much there on Saturday, but best time to check is during a weekday when they may be doing work. Also saw new 458 signals at the underpass, looks like there will be a single crossover at 455 as track 2 has 2 heads and track 1 has only one head for eastward traffic.
The only work done at future CP 453 was setting a new building in the ballast. The lack of work done at 453 is more telling than what has been completed. The other intermediate locations have new signals present ... Interrail skipped over 453 (presumably so NS could install the interlocking signals when the time comes and not waste money installing intermediates that will be removed).

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

Few notes from this weekend.

509 gained mucho extra OS circuits. Plus it gained a distant block on the BRC for better warning when things are headed NS's way. Unlike 501 and now 482, this one works for trains both directions. The dispatcher sure LOVES that new #1 crossover! The river line approach circuit functions again.

515 (Englewood) lost its extra OS circuits that used to represent which side of the diamond a train was on. Now there are just two OS circuits. One for each main.

tttodisp
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 193
Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2014 9:13 pm

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by tttodisp »

The strange thing about the BRC advance block is that it comes on as soon as the regular approach block does for WB moves and drops out as soon the approach block does for EB moves.

At Englewood, there does appear to be a 3TK for moves from M2 to the yard tracks.

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

I missed the K62 at the bottom of the adapter. Weird.

User avatar
justalurker66
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 1518
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:51 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by justalurker66 »

I have been watching traffic pass through CP 509. The derails are interesting as I read them backwards at first (where the switches and crossovers have a lower bit "normal" for a straight move and "reverse" for diverging - 11 normal vs 12 reverse - a derail has the lower bit as derailing and the second bit as disabled - 15 derail 16 pass). The derails activate independently. I have seen several go in to the "derail" position while routes are cleared through other derails or trains are still clearing the interlocking. Once each train clears and all the derails are active the bridge opens.

I have noticed the pattern of the bridge indications. I'd expect BRCLK and BROPK to be mutually exclusive but have seen both indicated at the same time for several minutes at a time (longer than a momentary glitch). The two most useful indications seem to be BRWDGOUTK and BRWDGINK. BRWDGOUTK is indicated when the bridge is fully down and BRWDGINK is indicated when the bridge is fully up. BRLOCK appears only when the bridge is down and locked. (I have not looked at BRRLCK and BRLLCK too closely as the above give enough information to report "Bridge Up", "Bridge Down" and "Bridge Locked".)

Is there a standard definition for the bridge indications? I understand BRCLK, BROPK and BRLOCK (although at CP 509 open and closed at the same time is not good). Just curious as to what the other indications are supposed to mean.

User avatar
justalurker66
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 1518
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:51 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by justalurker66 »

tttodisp wrote:The strange thing about the BRC advance block is that it comes on as soon as the regular approach block does for WB moves and drops out as soon the approach block does for EB moves.
I see that behavior at other CPs (479, 466 and CP 21 on the Marion Branch). It is almost as if the advance block is indicating a train between the interlocking and some defined distant point and the approach block is indicating a train that is closer.

Between 479 and 466 I have noticed an overlap. There are five signal blocks between those two CPs. If a train is in the middle block it triggers the advance block for both interlockings. If a train is in the approach block the advance block is also indicated.

tttodisp
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 193
Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2014 9:13 pm

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by tttodisp »

justalurker66 wrote:I have been watching traffic pass through CP 509. The derails are interesting as I read them backwards at first (where the switches and crossovers have a lower bit "normal" for a straight move and "reverse" for diverging - 11 normal vs 12 reverse - a derail has the lower bit as derailing and the second bit as disabled - 15 derail 16 pass). The derails activate independently. I have seen several go in to the "derail" position while routes are cleared through other derails or trains are still clearing the interlocking. Once each train clears and all the derails are active the bridge opens.

I have noticed the pattern of the bridge indications. I'd expect BRCLK and BROPK to be mutually exclusive but have seen both indicated at the same time for several minutes at a time (longer than a momentary glitch). The two most useful indications seem to be BRWDGOUTK and BRWDGINK. BRWDGOUTK is indicated when the bridge is fully down and BRWDGINK is indicated when the bridge is fully up. BRLOCK appears only when the bridge is down and locked. (I have not looked at BRRLCK and BRLLCK too closely as the above give enough information to report "Bridge Up", "Bridge Down" and "Bridge Locked".)

Is there a standard definition for the bridge indications? I understand BRCLK, BROPK and BRLOCK (although at CP 509 open and closed at the same time is not good). Just curious as to what the other indications are supposed to mean.
The BRWDGINK and BRWGOUTK are Bridge Wedge In/Out. BRRLCK and BRLLCK are Bridge Right/Left Lock. As for any standard indications, it may be railroad (or bridge) specific. ON the BNSF/ATSF Mississippi River Bridge near Ft. Madison, IA, they report North/South Span and all four corner Seat bits (all inverted), but these may make more sense for a swing bridge as compared to a lift bridge.

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

As far as the wedges. I usually make them WRWK WNWK and display them as a set of four switches on the layout where the bridge is. Many many CTC displays have them this way.

The type of wedge used at 509 uses a wedge rail design, others use interlocking fingers independent of the rails. (509 doesn''t even use the same design as the Amtrak bridge at 21st. 21st uses the interlocking finger design on each side of the rail. So even the mighty PRR wasn't consistent with this)

The wedges are run by a special switch machine.
The US&S model is called a M2 bridge wedge machine. It's essentially an M3 machine with the internal motor and mechanical parts turned 90 degrees so that it pushes and pulls along the rails.

Sometimes you can see them along the rails, but it's also possible to mount them under the grates next to the rails.

User avatar
justalurker66
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 1518
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:51 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by justalurker66 »

BRWDGINK and BRWGOUTK have a long (several minutes) period of what I would call "out of correspondence" if it were a regular switch. A regular switch goes from Normal to Reverse in a few seconds ... sometimes fast enough that the "neither normal or reverse" is not seen on ATSC. The length of time between BRWDGINK and BRWGOUTK seems to be appropriate for the length of time it would take to have the bridge go from completely down to completely up.

I expect BROPL and BRCLK to be mutually exclusive - the bridge cannot report open and closed at the same time. Yet CP 509 does this ... and for longer than a glitch. I am accustomed to signals not dropping on ATSC until a couple of seconds after a train passes, But the open and closed at the same time report lasts for minutes.

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

justalurker66 wrote:BRWDGINK and BRWGOUTK have a long (several minutes) period of what I would call "out of correspondence" if it were a regular switch. A regular switch goes from Normal to Reverse in a few seconds ... sometimes fast enough that the "neither normal or reverse" is not seen on ATSC. The length of time between BRWDGINK and BRWGOUTK seems to be appropriate for the length of time it would take to have the bridge go from completely down to completely up.

I expect BROPL and BRCLK to be mutually exclusive - the bridge cannot report open and closed at the same time. Yet CP 509 does this ... and for longer than a glitch. I am accustomed to signals not dropping on ATSC until a couple of seconds after a train passes, But the open and closed at the same time report lasts for minutes.
That is because a bridge wedge despite being run by a switch machine, it a much longer throw. A switch moves a couple inches at most. A wedge may be 6 inches to a couple FEET of throw.

These are also OLDER machines. If you ever saw an M3 switch machine throw. It's MUCH MUCH slower then a modern machine. (The M2 bridge wedge is an M3 switch machine modified)

Trust me, the time these wedges take to throw is consistent with what I have seen.

The open and closed don't need to be mutually exclusive. Bridge open is NOT just when it's at the top. It's anytime the bridge is NOT in it's completely down location. So yes, there will be some overlap. You want the bridge open ON anytime the bridge is and inch open, to all the way open.

Usually the way it's done. Is the CLOSED indication is a continuity loop thru the bridge. It's broken when the bridge lifts clear.
The open indication is usually when the machinery is energized to move the bridge, and when it's de-energized when it's done.

So as you see, it's VERY VERY possible to have the machinery energized and have the continuity loop completed too. Hence the overlap.

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

It all goes back to the way PRR did their bridges. They did things much different then most roads.

The PRR tied their bridges into the signal system much tighter then most roads.

First off, the bridge wedges were completely operated by the CTC machine. I mean why not, they are operated by modified switch machines anyway. This way the signals would drop if something happened to one of the wedges. They were ALWAYS put in the limits of an interlocking. This why I got so annoyed when NS omitted the wedge controls from the notice, because I knew they were part of the CTC.

Second, the bridge machinery was locked out while the wedges were in.

Here is the usual sequence on a PRR type bridge.

Once the last train was clear, the operator would use the CTC panel to throw the bridge wedges open. The wedges would not open unless there was no route lined over them. If there were derails to the bridge, they would not throw until the derails were thrown (not all PRR lifts had derails)

Once the wedges were thrown and shown to be in the correct position. The bridge machinery could be powered up. When powered up a light would come on the panel indicating the machinery was on. This would lock out the wedges.

The machinery would operate the bridge. Now this was different from bridge to bridge. CLAGG tower in Louisville had the controls from a PRR MU car. (I am NOT joking) The throttle would control the bridge. Forward moved the bridge up, reverse moved the bridge down. The bridge had brakes too, so that the brake handle on the MU stand would control them too. In this case, the operator didn't have to put the bridge up all the way if it was a shorter boat. We are not seeing this part thru the CTC system. The last indication we see thru the CTC (ATCS) system is when the machinery is powered on. There was usually a button to poke to turn on a LOUD ARSE tornado siren too.

With the NS 509 bridge. There is probably a separate computer program in the office controlling this part. Probably has a couple IP cameras so he can see whats going on too.

Once the bridge was clear of the continuity loop, the closed indication light went out on the CTC panel.

The machinery needed to be powered on to hold the bridge open. This is because the bridge is ever so slightly heavier then the counterweights.

Once the boaters were thru. The machinery would be used to put the bridge down. The closed indication would come on, and then when it was all the way down, the locked indication would come on. (usually something under the bridge to sense position, 509 has one on each side)

The machinery would be powered off. This would unlock the wedges on the CTC pannel.

The wedges would be closed, then any derails and switches would unlock.

As I said, this is why I got annoyed at NS for not including the bridge wedges in the CTC filing. It pretty much still works like this. As the wedges are right next to all the switches.
Last edited by LakeATCS on Fri Nov 11, 2016 1:05 pm, edited 4 times in total.

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

PRR CLAGG control panel
5998190034_08ba69d81a_z.jpg
PRR CLAGG draw controls
5998194248_0598b1ca15_z.jpg

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

Also 503 won't need replaced. It's a newish interlocking. When they updated things after 2009 they put in a new interlocking. (503 used to be direct wire from HICK, hence why they had to put a new machine in)

tttodisp
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 193
Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2014 9:13 pm

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by tttodisp »

LakeATCS wrote:As far as the wedges. I usually make them WRWK WNWK and display them as a set of four switches on the layout where the bridge is. Many many CTC displays have them this way.

The type of wedge used at 509 uses a wedge rail design, others use interlocking fingers independent of the rails. (509 doesn''t even use the same design as the Amtrak bridge at 21st. 21st uses the interlocking finger design on each side of the rail. So even the mighty PRR wasn't consistent with this)

The wedges are run by a special switch machine.
The US&S model is called a M2 bridge wedge machine. It's essentially an M3 machine with the internal motor and mechanical parts turned 90 degrees so that it pushes and pulls along the rails.

Sometimes you can see them along the rails, but it's also possible to mount them under the grates next to the rails.
--------------------
Do you know if any current NS displays that show the wedges or was that only on the old "real" panels like in the photo?

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

I know the Conrail "TV screen" 80s displays did.

Will have to wait until i get home to study what I have on NS

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

Here is what Amtrak did with their PRR type lift bridge at CUS.

The wedges don't show on the track layout anymore, but they are the RAILLK on and off

The bridge is just east of the 5N and 4N signals.
amtk.jpg

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

Furthermore look at the PRR and CR diagrams.

Image

Notice that on the PRR one the wedges were marked 23 and 24. for the levels on the panel (23 for the north bridge, and 24 for the south bridge)

On the CR on they went A and B. Despite that on 509 they were shown as one indication.

I can't see NS changing this that much, especially since that the wedges ride the bridge at 509. The four machines are installed on the bridge below the grates on ether side of the track.
I just cant see NS going to the trouble of changing this. it would take a lot of needless engineering to change that.

The fact that Conrail changed EVERY other switch to a GRS machine but left the US&S ones on the bridge support that.

User avatar
Saturnalia
Authority on Cat
Posts: 13938
Joined: Wed Sep 28, 2011 7:54 pm
Location: Grand Rapids
Contact:

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by Saturnalia »

Absolutely fascinating commentary here and in the Indiana Gateway Project thread. Thanks, guys :)
Thornapple River Rail Series - YouTube
Safety today is your investment for tomorrow

LakeATCS
Railroadfan...fan
Posts: 619
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:37 am

Re: NW Indiana PTC project.

Unread post by LakeATCS »

Also, PRR speak for Bridge Wedges was Rail Locks. Hence why Amtrak has them marked that way.

Post Reply