Don't Know How To Slow Trains On Sherman Hill

Discussion in 'PC Discussion' started by dan#6140, Nov 26, 2021.

  1. dan#6140

    dan#6140 New Member

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    I was driving a 6 x sd70ACe + 100 stack car train down a 1.5% grade. I had full dynamic brakes applied but it kept speeding up. I applied full automatic brakes and it was still speeding up. There are no more brakes to put on!

    Do I have to go slow enough for the dynamic/automatic brake to be effective enough for me to slow down or is there some other way I'm missing?
     
  2. KDTW Flyer

    KDTW Flyer New Member

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    I have never driven a train in real life, but I've noticed that the brakes on the American freight locomotives in TSW always seem to be pretty weak compared to have I would assume them to be in real life.
     
  3. damarjatiaji

    damarjatiaji Active Member

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    Just experienced the same thing mate. I have read it somehere how to control the train's speed. The problem is we are likely tend to reach max speed limit on the line, and when we had reached the summit, we already carried a lot of speed, that's why braking become less effective.

    I'll give you a scenario:
    When approaching the summit, reduce your speed far below permited speed limit, let's say the limit is 55 mph, so reduce your speed at least to around 30 mph and prepare to engage the dynamic brake, don't be afraid to lose speed when applying too much dyn brake, you can adjust it later.

    My mistake is at the summit i've reached about 50 mph, and yeah the dyn brake become useless at high speed and so the auto brake.

    I hope you understand what i mean.
     
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  4. Monder

    Monder Well-Known Member

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    When applying autobrake to help you slow down, you also have to bail off independent, otherwise SD70Ace will disengage dynamic (probably some "don't break the loco" safety) and you will lose a lot of your braking power. So full dynamic -> automatic -> bail off independent. When that gets you enough below speed limit, release automatic
     
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  5. ARuscoe

    ARuscoe Well-Known Member

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    Yet another example where a MANUAL would be very helpful. Not sure if it's included in one of Matt's tutorial vids or not
     
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  6. solicitr

    solicitr Well-Known Member

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    In RL, engineers will slow down quite a bit when cresting a summit. Speed limits are limits, not targets!
     
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  7. Quentin

    Quentin Active Member

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    I think another 'Save' bug may be contributing to this problem. I was running a consist with 'banking comms on' and the units were working correctly, but after saving and then restoring the game, although banking comms still claimed to be on (if I hovered other the switch), the rear units weren't responding. Turning the comms off and then on again fixed the issue.
     
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  8. Kevinsim1046

    Kevinsim1046 New Member

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    Another thing to take into account is the time it takes for auto brakes to really engage on a 100 car long train. With these lengths you need to be thinking quite far ahead. So you want to be engaging some auto brake before you hit the target speed.

    The way I have found it works best for me is to back off the power before hitting the summit like everyone else suggests, once I start to crest over and pick up speed, I use the dynamic brake until higher notches are starting to struggle, I then apply some auto brake until that starts to slow me down a little, I then just use the dynamic to help me keep to the limit while leaving the auto brake in its position until the bottom.
     
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  9. cwf.green

    cwf.green Well-Known Member

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    Like TrainSim-Matt mentioned in the streams, since the trains are so long you have to really plan ahead what you want to achieve.

    1. Don't crest the grade at line speed, if this is the case you are already "behind the 8-ball" so to say. When you are approaching the summit you should already be notching down since you have to wait 10 seconds to transition into dynamics and you don't want to slam the throttle from N8 to idle. A better technique would be to reach the summit at maybe 10 mph below the speed limit and notch down the throttle so that you are in idle around the time half of the train has crested the grade.

    2. Depending on how steep the grade is, make a minimum application or a bit more. The 1.5% grade would usually require slightly less than 1 psi per 10 Tons Per Operative Brake (gross train weight in short tons divided by the number of freight cars). This is a rule of thumb though, and it's more intended for mountain grades. YMMV.

    The rest of the brake force is achieved by the dynamic brakes, but try to not max them out since then you have no room to increase the brake force and you would have to wait for the airbrakes to apply. Running with 100% dynamic brake effort is also a bad idea because you may lose traction depending on the adhesion available which means you now maybe only have 50% of the required brake force.

    3. The dynamic brakes fade with increasing speed which means you can get into a situation where you are already overspeeding and the dynamic brakes become weaker and weaker as you overspeed more and more, that's a terrible situation to be in. Start early!

    Example: Approaching the 1.5% descending grade with the intermodal train, you would apply a minimum application and then adjust the speed with around 50% dynamic brakes.

    4. Keep an eye on the rear brake pipe pressure reading. If you crest the grade with the rear reading 75 psi you maybe need to make a full service brake application just to get 10 psi reduction on the rear. Similarly you can "piss away" your brakes if you apply and then release and then quickly apply the train brakes again ("fanning" the brakes, *bad* idea).

    5. Lastly, like Monder stated, make sure to bail off the independent brakes when you make a train brake application, so as not to lose the dynamic brakes. Iirc this is automatically done IRL but may vary depending on locomotive and railroad (I'm not 100% sure what is correct for a UP SD70ACe).

    Smooth and early is key.

    EDIT: As an example, a loaded coal train with 100 freight cars and a 3x1 locomotive configuration with 50% dynamic brakes takes about 2300 meters (7500 feet) to stop with a 10 psi reduction from 50 mph on flat track, in the game. That's a long stopping distance! :D
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2021
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  10. solicitr

    solicitr Well-Known Member

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    Also: it's easy in TSW to get into the habit, with much lighter trains, of using the independent brake for speed control. This simply won't work with these huge trains- three or four locos don't have remotely enough braking force by themselves to make much of a difference. And, as said above, using the indy costs you the much more important dynamic brakes.
     
  11. dan#6140

    dan#6140 New Member

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    Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll play around with it and see what works. :)
     
  12. Lamplight

    Lamplight Well-Known Member

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    Is that truly realistic? Keeping the air brakes on continuously while descending a lengthy gradient sounds like a quick way to melt your brake shoes to me.
     
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  13. delucadomenico2009

    delucadomenico2009 Active Member

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    Yes and in real life the situation are a bit different. First the throttle and brake power of theese locos are a bit nerfed. Keep in mind that in real life a 4x2 configuration can push 200/250 cars or more without problem. Second the "slow down before the hill" tattics works yes but it will be applied just if there is a driver (or a second man in the cab) that know this line. Also in real life there are this kind of operator that works just on a specific area of the line. However set the auto brake around 30% at the start, than increase the dynamic one until notch 8 (full power). Than when you start to slow down decrease the auto brake a bit and after a bit increase it again. And continue in this way. Needs a lot of practice. It is possible to stay near the limit yes, and if you go 2 or 3mph over its very common in US. Just in case of emergency set the autobrake on suppression to apply the full power. And yes it is an hard life for brakes, but this "play" help them to not melt.
     
  14. shacheld

    shacheld New Member

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  15. TrainSim-Matt

    TrainSim-Matt Executive Producer Staff Member

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    It's absolutely realistic - I remember when I worked with 3rd party developers on TS1 and i was working with Milepost on their Canadian Mountain Passes route that we wanted to check prototypical braking behaviours etc and even found a diagram showing explicitly where and what brakes to set - and at the top of the descent, it said to apply a minimum set, keep it there all the way down adjusting with dynamics, aside from a bit in the middle where they got you to raise the auto a little bit as it got notably steeper.

    Are you sure about this? US Air brakes on freight trains do not have a gradual release function unlike those in Europe, the triple valve (or later equivalent) only support full release. So if you need less train brake you are literally looking at having to full release, let it all recharge, and then re-apply, not something you want to be doing without a great deal of planning. This is why it's crucial to plan ahead and apply train brakes gradually, allowing them to have their full effect, to avoid over-braking.

    I normally start with dynamics, as the dynamics begin to strain I will put a minimum set on, and then as that takes effect I can gradually ease up on the dynamics, if I find things are still pushed, add a little to the train brake and again adjust the dynamics as they take effect until you have a balance. Don't daydream while driving, keep a close eye on it - a finely balanced smooth run can quickly run into problems if you let the train get ahead of you on an unnoticed gradient change. If things get bad, bring the train to a stop, and start again.

    Also remember that dynamics have a point at which they become LESS effective, so your reliance on air brakes will *increase* as you go faster, and *decrease* as you get slower (until you get past that hump, and then it reverses hah :) ).

    I guess what i'm saying is - watch it like a hawk. People often say to me "whats so interesting about a boring 25mph train going slowly down a boring hill without scenery". To them I say - descend a 1.5% with 13,000 tons and keep control of it throughout, it won't seem boring because you won't be paying that much attention to the scenery if you're doing it right. You'll probably lose it more than once. That is the fun with US trains - yes, they're an awesome spectacle of power, weight and length - but from the operating perspective, for me at any rate, my favourite bit is when you hit the summit, power transitions to brakes and that down hill run threatens the rest of your journey.

    Matt.
     
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  16. damarjatiaji

    damarjatiaji Active Member

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    What i recently discovered in Sherman Hill route is, if you want to apply the automatic brake when the dynamic begin struggling, you should bail-off the loco's independent brake manually by pressing the assigned key. If you don't bail-off the independent brake, the dynamic brake essentially becomes off and not produce any braking power for your train, and your train begin to runaway uncontrolled. Interesting, because if my memory serve me well, the SPG route have automatic bail-off, so even when the train brake applied, the dynamic brake stays on and producing braking power.
     
  17. TrainSim-Matt

    TrainSim-Matt Executive Producer Staff Member

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    I don't think SPG had an auto bail off - but it also didn't cut the dynamics if the loco had brakes on. However that doesn't change that "dynamics + loco brakes" are a waste of time - the loco brake is stopping the dynamic brake from being effective.

    Therefore on the SD70 if you have the brakes applied on the locomotive it cuts the dynamics. If you want the dynamics back, bail off the loco brakes and they'll just automatically come back into action again - you dont need to move the lever.

    But yes - you do need to remember this one, and re-bail off if you apply more brakes mid-run, a couple of times i've forgotten and wondered what the heck is going on :)
     
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  18. damarjatiaji

    damarjatiaji Active Member

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    Well in the beginning some of American diesel engine doesn't have dyn brake as standard feature. Also back when steam still the king if the line, the only way slowing the train down or keeping the speed down the grade, only use the air brake. It's a common thing to see smoking brake shoe back in the day i think.
     
  19. Dinosbacsi

    Dinosbacsi Well-Known Member

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    So for the dynamic brakes to work, you need to bail-off the locomotive brakes every time you move the auto brake handle as well, or only if you applied loco brake?
     
  20. delucadomenico2009

    delucadomenico2009 Active Member

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    This is the key matt. The strategy dynamic + autoB later works in every situation but with a downhill of 15-20miles the autoBrake needs a bit of health or the will be apply for around 30 minutes and it is possible that a problem on a car or more can happen. In this case, when you are starting the downhill, the train will star to tale speed when the 20 - 25% has passed the summit. At this point you can apply the autobrake that will have the maximum possible effect because 60% or more of the train still is on the uphill before the summit. Now starts the job of the dynamicB. You can directly start with notch 3 or 4 becuase the train is breaking yet. Than increase them up to max to create a "wall" head the cars. At this point the train starts to contract itself and you lose for sure a bit of speed (exemple from 50 to 40mph). Now we have the dynamic at the full power and around 10mph below of the limit, so you can start to release the autobrake. And when you waiting for the recharge of the pressure the dynamic will try to neutralize the gravity force for a while and the cars brake will take a bit of health. Than again, when you are again near the limit apply the autobrake again and repeat the process, with a reduction of the dynamic a bit and after a bit apply again the full power. At the end of the down hill you will save around 5 or more miles without brakes. Again everyone has os strategy but require a lot of practice and needs to know exactly where is the summit to start planning how to do. Also i repeat that probably in real life an external driver go into the cab to give support until cheyenne where normally theese huge trains stopped a bit for a check.
     
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  21. delucadomenico2009

    delucadomenico2009 Active Member

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    However, as not a real fan of US route i can say, great job. A lot of potential yes but at the moment it is very good and i like it.
     
  22. Disintegration7

    Disintegration7 Well-Known Member

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    Just wanna say how much i'm enjoying this route, and the challenge of handling these massive trains. Even on a "smaller" 7000t train (loaded coal Laramie-Hermosa), I almost SPAD stopping before the summit because I underestimated my braking distance going UPHILL.

    My only real gripe is the phantom bell on SD70ACE (i'm on Series X) , but is there any way to lower the driver's seat height on the SD70ACE? The default camera angle seems to be too high- feel like my head's being crushed into the ceiling lol.

    Also could we have some longer trains on SPG, CRR, CC, and Oakville now?
     
  23. TrainSim-Matt

    TrainSim-Matt Executive Producer Staff Member

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    Bell fix and camera height fix are incoming but not sure exactly when yet.
     
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  24. Tanglebones

    Tanglebones Active Member

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    Matt, I know your todo list will be longer than St. Nick's on Christmas Eve, but I beg you to put this in some sort of tutorial so that more people can see it. IMO, time invested in reducing frustration over basic game mechanics (and braking is a basic game mechanic in a train sim), will pay dividends in people playing and enjoying the routes. ie. learn it once, learn it forever across different routes.

    I would love to see some sort of academy brought into TSW, as I've mentioned before, and I would happily pay for this as a DLC of its own. A fake route with both flat and mountainous terrain, split into 'things common to all trains' and 'things unique to route X or loco Y'. As we buy DLC, it opens up the tutorials related to that DLC. Tutorials teaching the three types of brakes and when they're best used, safety systems and signals by country, guidance on what all those cryptic trackside signs mean (i.e. - the X on this route, which you covered in the recent stream).

    Anyways, just me banging on a drum again. Now that I've seen people teaching how to get started in snowy terrain and control trains downhill, I'm enjoying this new DLC tremendously. But better tutorials really wouldn't go amiss.
     
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  25. Dinosbacsi

    Dinosbacsi Well-Known Member

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    That's great to hear. The camera really does seem to be way too high in the cab. This is why adjustable seat heights like on the DB BR 155 would be cool, so everyone could drive in a position they prefer.

    But anyway it's good that at least it's getting lowered a bit, thanks for the info.
     
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  26. Crosstie

    Crosstie Well-Known Member

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    I wonder if lowering the seating position will at least partially solve the wiper problem. Right now the wipers on the Ace do not clear the windshield sufficiently to see the road clearly.
     
  27. TrainSim-Matt

    TrainSim-Matt Executive Producer Staff Member

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    It does indeed, in fact ensuring clean vision through the wiped section was one of the measures used to validate the new position.
     
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  28. Lamplight

    Lamplight Well-Known Member

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    Thanks a lot for your response, Matt. You learn something new everyday. Those poor brake shoes must get absolutely wrecked on a route like Sherman Hill :)
     
  29. Anthony Pecoraro

    Anthony Pecoraro Well-Known Member

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    Matt, I have a question, does banking comm operate the dynamic brakes on the DPUs too. If they do, do they bail off with the lead locos too?
     
  30. jörgen Näslund

    jörgen Näslund Well-Known Member

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    Not just here. Cajon pass California have 2.2% grade. Kicking Horse Canada pass the same.
    1000 meters change (meters above sea level)
    you brake with both dynamic brake and auto brake.
    Here is just 1.5% but it is higher speed here.
    CP drive 13000 ton grain train with just 3 engine in this 2,2% downhill. (2 in front and 1 in end)
    And then you must use much auto brake for 3 engine dynamic brake can fix this
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2021
  31. Monder

    Monder Well-Known Member

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    That to me still seems really weird as I think you would melt through those brakes on one rundown. What are they made of??? :D
     
  32. jörgen Näslund

    jörgen Näslund Well-Known Member

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    This video a CP train have 150 wagons uphill with 3 engine Link EC44AC AC4400CV
    Every wagon is 102 ton loaded and whole train 15000 ton Link
    But uphill in video 2,2% is much easier 29 ton *150 =4400 ton.
    But same train goes downhill 15000 ton here loaded with grain to Vancouver from east Canada
    But it goes slow 22 mph so the dynamic brake is strongest but it must use much auto brake whole way to Field
    Very challenging and some trains have crashed. Runaway trains

    You can start the video from beginning to see whole kicking horse pass with spiral tunnels
    This route you can drive in a trainsimulator 2020. But it not very realistic there I think.

    Me to Matt I love to see the kicking horse pass in TSW. But even after Field it is so interesting
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2021
  33. TrainSim-Matt

    TrainSim-Matt Executive Producer Staff Member

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    Kicking Horse Pass is one route i'd *love* to see in TSW, it's a real challenge to drive in TS1 and the scenery is spectacular - let alone the twin spiral tunnels!
     
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  34. cwf.green

    cwf.green Well-Known Member

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    You're either radiating away the heat generated on the locomotives or in each axle. The difference is that in the former scenario you only have a handful of locomotives to divide the generated heat over while in the latter case you are dividing the generated heat over maybe 400 axles. Another downside to only using dynamic brakes is that if something goes wrong in one of the locomotives (or it loses adhesion) you now have maybe only 75% of the required braking power/force and you then have to wait maybe 30 seconds to apply the required brake force in terms of train brakes.

    During this time the train will have accelerated which means that you then need to apply more train brakes and most likely would need to make an emergency brake application to prevent a runaway. In the case you were already using train brakes to make up the majority of the brake force, if one axle or freight car fails you still have 399 axles or 99 freight cars left.
     
  35. jörgen Näslund

    jörgen Näslund Well-Known Member

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    It is true that they can go hot and you can lose almost all braking effect. But very unusual
    if you brake only by 10-50%, I assume that the axle manages to get rid of the heat

    But in Cajon pass 1996 this happening Link1 Link2
    The train was to heavy. Some engines have no worked Dynamic brakes (not known to the driver).
    So the engineer just had to brake more and more with auto brake to keep the speed downhill 2,2%
    in the end he got an emergency brake but then all the dynamic brake stopped working.
    and the brakes were hot then and had lost much of the braking effect and it became one rune way train. So it crashed
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2021
  36. damarjatiaji

    damarjatiaji Active Member

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    I believe if you applied the train brake, then if you going to apply the independent brake, the independent lever does nothing because the loco brake already controlled/applied by the auto brake lever.

    So you can't operating the dyn brake and the independent brake at the same time because they will cancel each other, but you can operate the auto brake and the dyn brake at the same time as long you activate bail-off function on the independent brake lever.
     
  37. Blacknred81

    Blacknred81 Well-Known Member

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    There's a reason why Ed Dickens has a diesel helper whenever he makes a run with UP 844 or 4014 nowadays, imagine replacing the brake shoes on those two on a regular basis (Not including the cost).
     
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  38. paul.pavlinovich

    paul.pavlinovich Well-Known Member

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    Both dynamic brakes and air brakes take a long time to react and start doing something. You need to anticipate well in advance of when you need them. In a lot of other routes its been more game like, but SMH is very simulator meaning you need to know what is going on. Make sure you don't go directly from throttle to dynamics too or in the SD70ACE they will not spool up.

    Throttle to idle - wait 10 seconds
    Dynamics to SetUp - wait 10 seconds
    Dynamics increase slowly one notch at a time

    When you apply the train brake (auto brake) or the locomotive independent brake the dynamics will cut out. To avoid this, apply the train brake and bail off the locomotive brake and the dynamics will keep working.

    I run down the hill no worries on dynamics only and when it starts to creep up I apply a minimum service application until the speed drops then as soon as I see it start to drop I release them because it will be a few minutes before the back even starts to brake let alone releases.

    Paul
     
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  39. breblimator

    breblimator Well-Known Member

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  40. breblimator

    breblimator Well-Known Member

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    M2 track (CP Cajon, downhill only) is 3.4% :o
     
  41. OldVern

    OldVern Well-Known Member

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    Quite a white knuckle ride in Run 8. In fact those of who have dabbled in that sim are still quietly smiling at this thread, the chickens have come home for those used to stopping German EMUs in 600 metres from 100 km/h.
    And Matt, yes my wallet is open and ready for Kicking Horse Pass.
     
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  42. Lamplight

    Lamplight Well-Known Member

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    True. Controlling the SPG and CRR 50 car trains is nothing compared to Sherman Hill - and I‘m loving it! :D
     
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  43. Monder

    Monder Well-Known Member

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    In an interview I heard him say brake shoes set for Big Boy is 40000 dollars
     
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  44. dark-rabbit

    dark-rabbit New Member

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    it seems to me that kinetic energy is proportional to the square of the speed, right? as this energy must be dissipated by the brake system in the form of heat, low speed may be the secret to avoiding problems.
     
  45. Monder

    Monder Well-Known Member

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    ICYMI, Matt is doing another Sherman Hill stream today and will tackle a lot of the braking stuff.
     
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  46. jörgen Näslund

    jörgen Näslund Well-Known Member

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    Yes low speed 20-30 mph you have much stronger dynamic brake so you dont have to use the auto brake so much.
    Then the down slope begin you have all train charged with 88-90 psi.
    then you must not release the auto brake and brake again soon, then you will be without brakes fairly quickly
     
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  47. JustWentSouth

    JustWentSouth Well-Known Member

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    Excellent video!

    I haven’t opened up Sherman Hill quite yet. I have a few more DRA runs I want to try first.

    Are the minimum reductions at just 6 pounds now? Can you add further air one pound at a time like shown in this video?
     
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  48. breblimator

    breblimator Well-Known Member

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    Brakes work fine and with really heavy trains this DLC has this is the best mountain challenge in TSW to date (my opinion).
     
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  49. Crosstie

    Crosstie Well-Known Member

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    Bring it on!!
    Revelstoke-Lake Louise might be even better.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2021
  50. jörgen Näslund

    jörgen Näslund Well-Known Member

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    When going uphill and downhill is Min HP/T its a interesting thing.
    Cajon Pass have min 2,5-3,0 uphill depending what track you using. Downhill 2,0
    Needles have 1,7 HP/T
    Sherman Hill (don't know) But I guess even here 1,7 HP/T

    My train i driving now we can calculate
    Train weight 11800 ton (ethanol)
    4 engine front 1 back sd70ace. 5*4500hp= 22500 Hp
    22500 hp/11800 ton= 1,9 HP/T

    So its under 2,0. If i drive this downhill i must be super careful.
    Properly I just drive it 30 mph so I have plenty of dynamic brake force and even brake with auto brake which I hold all the way down. to change the speed I use dynamic brake.

    But if I have a 3,0 train its so much easier to handled. probably that train can only brake with dynamic brake to hold speed

    Info about dynamic brake.
    You have just 30% dynamic brake force in 60 mph that you have in 20 Mph
    You have just 50% dynamic brake force in 40 mph that you have in 20 Mph
    Sd70 ace
    60mph=33 klb
    50mph=40 klb
    40mph=50 klb
    30mph=68 klb
    20mph=100 klb
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2021
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