Usage Of Yards For Measurement.

Discussion in 'PC Discussion' started by StratPlayer62, Feb 18, 2021.

  1. StratPlayer62

    StratPlayer62 Well-Known Member

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    Just more of an FYI for DTG as I know they are in the UK and maybe just don't know.

    I've NEVER heard any American railroad use Yards for measuring distance, it is either in Feet, or a conductor calls out car distances up until there is less than one car then he switches to Feet.

    I know it is a minor thing but it really annoys me to see Yards used.
     
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  2. Tom Fresco

    Tom Fresco Well-Known Member

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    IMO Yards (and Miles) are stupid, they (America) should just use meters, would make it easier for all of us.
    I have problems to calculate the braking distance in UK routes, because 1000yards are apparently ~0.6 Miles and braking at 7-500 like you would so with meters is way too early.

    Isn't there an option in the settings to change measurements to Yard, Km, feet, bald Eagles per McDonalds and so on?
     
  3. solicitr

    solicitr Well-Known Member

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    You can set yards or meters permanently in Settings, but feet is not an option.
     
  4. Callum B.

    Callum B. Well-Known Member

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    They do! Kind of.... One foot in U.S. Customary Units is exactly 0.3048 meters. There's even a metric interstate!
    [​IMG]

    But yes, I agree that the United States ought to get with the times.

    Cheers
     
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  5. Northerner

    Northerner Well-Known Member

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    To complicate things further, in Britain chains are used as a measurement of distance on the railway. So to be completely accurate maybe on British routes it should go miles, chains and then yards. ;)

    But I somehow doubt this would go down too well with people less familiar with imperial measurements.
     
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  6. voltajtepes#7278

    voltajtepes#7278 Member

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    Heck we tried in the late 1960s, early 1970s. There as a push across the country to convert to metric. Speed limit signs, car speedometers, the government tried to get people to change. Being about 10 years old, I was excited to go metric! It all made sense! I thought for SURE, by 1980, then 1990, we would convert...
    But alas, it wasn't meant to be. Americans are stubborn and would rather count acres, yards, feet, inches rather than just divide or multiply by ten :)..
    That was a long time ago. Even in my job, I still deal with people who do not want to use Nm, or kg, or m/s^2. Nope, gotta use g's because it sounds cool.
     
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  7. StratPlayer62

    StratPlayer62 Well-Known Member

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    I agree that the Metric system is easier to understand, however that is not what the point of my thread was. This is a simulator, and I was pointing out what is used in real life.
     
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  8. Callum B.

    Callum B. Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, we took a bit of a detour. :)
    I think your feedback is good. While they're at it, they should fix the AC4400CW MFD that says to input train length in feet but actually wants yards...

    Cheers
     
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  9. voltajtepes#7278

    voltajtepes#7278 Member

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    My apologies. Should not have gone off on that tangent. I do agree that real world units should be represented in the game. It would be like a flight simulator representing an altimeter in yards lol. I wasn't aware of how real trains did it in the US.
     
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  10. hyperlord

    hyperlord Well-Known Member

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    Cars as a unit for measurements...why not dishwashers or refrigerators? ;-)
     
  11. JustWentSouth

    JustWentSouth Well-Known Member

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    There is something to be said for that. In my museum railroad crew experience, we use cars as a countdown and then switch to feet beyond 1/2 car left. Usually it is 80 ft passenger cars, but occasionally it is vintage freight equipment which can cause confusion because it is much shorter.

    However, no matter what unit used, as long as the brakeman and conductor are consistent in the countdowns, things work well. So we could use refrigerators and, by the time the countdown went from 4 to 2 to 1 refrigerator left, the engineer would have a good feel for distance to the stop.

    It works better with visual contact where the crew member can slowly raise their arms over their head to signal a stopping or coupling point. Also, it gets easier once you get used to working with the same crew members.
     
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  12. geloxo

    geloxo Well-Known Member

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    While listening to railroad radio streams I noticed they always use "20 cars, 10 cars, 5 to go, 2 more" and such sentences in the comms while shunting. So I understand they just estimate the distance by the number of remaining wagons and communicate that value via radio to driver.

    In game we just need a unit to measure distances as the objectives are based on position. I guess yards is the closer equivalence to meters, as feet is just too small for such distances. It also helps players to estimate stop points and train lenghts if they play with metric and imperial in different routes every day as using feet would mean to multiply the absolute value three times more or less, which could be misleading. If you are used to a 400m train lenght then a 400 yards train is in the same order of magnitude, but a 1300 feet train could be confussing if you did not pay attention to units and just observe the absolute value (you may think you have a 1300m train).

    Cheers
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2021
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  13. stujoy

    stujoy Well-Known Member

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    The foot may be appropriate at slow speeds at the business end of a shunting move but is too short a measurement across the board. The yard is used for UK as well as US and is the imperial equivalent of the metre. It’s the best ‘next unit’ for general use when you get below half a mile or so, and is good for counting down to a passenger stop.

    Although all imperial measurements are the product of deranged madmen from the olden days, they do exist and there is a lot of resistance to the metric system for traditional purposes. I was educated in centimetres and metres but could only tell you my height in feet and inches and my weight in stones and pounds. Bonkers.

    As another aside, let me introduce you to the metric foot. It is used when buying wood in the UK. You buy wood in lengths of 30cm units. How’s that for mixing things up?
     
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  14. solicitr

    solicitr Well-Known Member

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    I suspect that the game uses "meters" and "yards" interchangaby- it certainly isn't working to surveyor's precision, not if it thinks 1000 yards is half a mile!
     
  15. paul.pavlinovich

    paul.pavlinovich Well-Known Member

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    And sadly, Australia was fully metric, then came our incessant coverage from American TV series and now we're blended metric and imperial. Go figure.

    I worked in the US for a few years and I had to convert all of our engineering drawings from metric to imperial before BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) would look at them. Everyone else I dealt with actually did do their engineering in metric. I guess its behind the scenes but not out front. It would be a fantastic economic stimulus project to change everything over.

    Paul
     
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  16. Purno

    Purno Well-Known Member

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    If I recall correctly, Train Simulator simply just uses Miles or Kilometres, but in units of 0.01. Worked fine for me to have a good guesstimates for breaking distances related to current speed vs distance remaining, as it didn't really matter much wether I'm going 62 km/h when having 0.43 km left to my stopping point, or was going 62 mph and having 0.43 miles remaining.

    No clue it's more realistic though. I've always prefered Train Simulator's graphical HUD over TSWs numerical HUD, as I find it much harder to correctly estimate my speed and distance remaining in TSW.
     
  17. mattdsoares

    mattdsoares Well-Known Member

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    The old Imperial units are indeed stupid and we (America) should really make an effort to switch. Interesting fact though: The Metric System enjoy official status under US Law. However that law did not force the conversion of US industry to metric so the country generally just chose to stay with the old US customary units instead. That is changing however as more and more of the global supply chain, and companies in general go multi-national. Once it was US industry that stood in the way of metrication, but now they're generally the ones advocating for it! Like many regulatory things, the US government has taken a position that it's up to individuals, companies, and individual states to decide which standard they want to operate primarily in. There is little social appetite for forced conversion to only metric. At best you may see over the next couple of decade the US become more like the UK in being measurement "bilingual" where both may be used and widely understood.
     
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  18. Wolfovizer

    Wolfovizer Well-Known Member

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    Everything I know is a complete bonkers too, I use metric and imperial for distance and weight. I use horse world terms for height I don't even know my height in feet I'm 18hh (hands high, I used to work with horses) crazy really.
     
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