Custom Painted P-2000 units

Monday, November 28, 2011

Intermodal Testing

The New York Central was a forerunner in what became known as intermodal rail traffic. Intermodal means traveling by more than one mode of transit such as truck and train, ship and train etc. NYC started with the Flexi-Van Service on 89' flatcars and then the Trailer on Flat Car also known as TOFC and later Container on Flat Car, COFC. Other railroads such as the PRR and B&O were also quick to explore this traffic opportunity. The PRR featured the "Truc-Train and the B&O lettered up their equipment for TOFCEE Service. This method of transportation offered several immediate benefits since it was no longer necessary to"break bulk". This reduced theft and damage while speeding up shipping.
Since my my New York Central  layout  is basically set in the mid 1960s this early intermodal traffic would be right at home on my layout. For the last few days the New York Central has been testing Intermodal Cars on the new lower level. While the lower level was built for passenger trains to access Central Station, some of the passenger trains feature a few Flexi-Van cars on the head end. If the Flexi Van cars are going to be loaded and unloaded maybe a combined facility for all intermodal traffic could be worked into the plan.
So for the last few days I have been using modelers license and running my Impack Car intermodal fleet. The 22" inside curve radius limits the number of cars per train to about 25 due to their light weight and high center of gravity. For optimal operation I have imposed a 20 car maximum for all impack car unit trains plus a caboose to avoid any string lining issues. So far this has worked very well, except for the pedestrian bridge that was struck by a trailer. Thankfully there were no pedestrians present and damage was minimal.
 Once I got starter pulling out my cranes, trailers and containers this facility grew way to large to be accommodated on the lower level. 




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