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November '06
This page describes work accomplished on the new TMRC layout during the month of November 2006, as taken from the descriptions posted to the club mailing list.
November 4 [pictures]

This morning and afternoon 12 TMRC members went on tours of three rail related facilities in the Boston area. The day began with an adventure on the T. After a short debate we got on the Red Line at Central Square rather than Kendall Square. Then we found out that the trains were only running as far as Kendall Square due to work going on at Charles/MGH, so we got a shuttle bus to Park Street. Eventually we arrived at the MBTA subway control center on High Street in downtown Boston, where we were able to see how their display and control system compares to ours and ask lots of questions about the way the different subways lines operate.

We then found enough time before our next scheduled appointment that James was able to sweet talk Amtrak into giving us a tour of the control center in South Station. This center is responsible for Amtrak traffic from Boston south into Connecticut. We met with people responsible for dispatching, power distribution and maintenance and our hosts patiently answered all the questions we could come up with.

We then took the green line to Riverside to visit the T maintenance facility there. This center is responsible for heavy maintenance and overhaul of three types of Green Line equipment (LRV, Kinki Sharyo and Breda). Our host took us around, under and through cars of all three types and pointed out various electrical and mechanical systems on the cars. We also got to see the area where retired and wrecked cars are stored before being scrapped.

Our thanks to everyone at the MBTA and Amtrak who made today's events possible.


November 18

Oh boy, fall open house!

Today was our fall open house. There were many, many visitors, mostly kids, during the afternoon session, and fewer visitors during the evening session. The system worked well for the first hour, then died a horrible death at 3 pm sharp. It took Tom and Alvar about 20 minutes to track the problem to a failure in the f-yard cab interface board. There was much rejoicing from the younger visitors when trains began moving again. The A-unit of the Aaron Burr developed a short after a couple of hours. The trains were otherwise fairly reliable, which either means we've fixed the defective rolling stock, or we've pulled them all of the track by now.

New t-shirts have arrived and are available through the web store or in the club room.


November 29

David Dalrymple stopped by with his advisor and talked to Tom about plans for a control system for the trolleys. This will involve some version of Internet 0, which is a research project in David's lab. Adam and John McNamara worked on scenery in the river/mountain area. After some debate on the best way to glue it down, much ground foam was deposited. John Purbrick worked on the drawbridge mechanism he is assembling for the river in Gifford City. James showed up and worked out some bugs in the double-crossover, which he claims is now in proper working order.



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Tech Model Railroad Club of MIT
MIT Room N52-118
265 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139

+1 617 253-3269
x3-3269 (on campus)
Email: tmrc-web@mit.edu
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