sually this set of SP black widow F’s is on the point of 373 and 374, the intermodal service from Watsonville to San Luis Obispo. They’ve run up and down that route for years. But today I put them on the Zanesville local, running through the Pennsy highlands, working a cut from Martin Yard to Carbon Hill and back (with most of its work in Zanesville). So, yeah, out of place a bit.
But fun. I sorted out the cuts on the lead track to the auto plant, and worked one side of the line, then the other, nice and efficiently. Quick run to Carbon Hill and back. But I could tell as I wrapped up the last few spurs in Zanesville that the dispatcher was going down bubbling. Warrants were coming slower (and if that wasn’t hints enough, my cornfield with a fast flier in Mingo pretty much nailed it). Managed to limp back into Martin and fight with the yardmaster about who puts the cuts away (turns out its me – for reason of car placement on the outbound track. Next time we do it my way).
Unfortunately, the LM&O (at 20 years of service) is starting to get old. I think we’re at the point where we were with the modules some years back, when we had to replace them. Likely we’ll need to apply the same amazing foresight that we did with the sectionals and come up with a way to refurbish entire sections of turnouts. Right now, they are the weakest part of the whole line.
Otherwise, yes, there was muttering about slow dispatcher service and troublesome switches. We’ll get to it. We did it with the modules – we can do it here.