Quincy & Hancock Southern

- RR Technical Info
Quincy & Hancock Southern (Q&H Southern, or Q&HS), AAR reporting marks: QHS, NYSE: QHS

Scale: HO (1/87)
Track: Code 83 Mainlines with Code 70 for yards & industries
Minimum radius: 22"
Grades: 3.5% max
Decks: Single deck, multi-level track work, lower set at 30", mine area set at 42", with the upper deck at 54"-56"
Electrical: DCC with 3 or 4 Cabs
Aisles: Narrowest 24" (?)

Here we go! TRIPLE LOOP! I think I got it down now.

Refer to the image below while reading.

Triple Loop:
We'll start our tour on the BLUE line, in the upper left, and we'll be traveling clockwise (RR east). This corner becomes the town, it'll be multi-leveled as the inner most track is on a lower lever (YELLOW). We're starting at the location of a small Station. As we head east, we go into a hidden track, as it disappears, it heads downgrade. After looping the layout's right & lower sides, we reappear in town again, thus entering the YELLOW line. We continue, passing the Stamp Mill's load out (GRAY spur), then head into another hidden track. When we reappear again, we're heading upgrade to pass next to the yard (PURPLE/MAGENTA), then the stub spur to the Turntable & 3/4 stall Roundhouse (TAN). Now we enter the RED line, in town, yet again. This line becomes the freight passing track for station activities (hence the GRAY crossovers). The big GRAY spur to the top, is the tipple to unload the unprocessed copper ore. Now we enter a short tunnel. This tunnel cuts through a tree covered ridge, which serves as a view block for photos and during operating sessions. To the right wall we see another GRAY spur, this is the copper mine. The RED line tracks are between the shaft house and the hoist house, with hoist cables overhead. Now we pass a long GRAY passing siding, this is where mine trains pass each other. Now we've completed the 3rd loop.

Operating Sessions:
"Empty" mine trains run clockwise out of the yard, pulling until they clear the crossover just south of town. There they enter "push mode", with a caboose on the rear, pushing counter-clockwise to the mine. Empties are spotted between the mine & hoist house, loads are then picked up. The train will then pull the empties, and spot them on the spur, then return to the main to pick up the caboose. The return trip is now made in "pull" mode (I opted for this, for 3 reasons: 1 he's modeling a mine run in hilly terrain, thus a lack of "space" for more trackage; 2 operating "difficulty" there needed to be something harder to do; 3 cabooses in modern railroading are rare).

The loaded ore train passes through town, staying on the RED line. Just east of town, it stops, the engines run around to the rear of the train, and then push the loads onto the tipple. They can opt to pull, but must have a short train (1-2 cars). The engine & caboose can now return to the yard.

The "load out" trains head downhill from the yard, to the mill, picking up loads, and leaving empties as needed. Copper is shipped by Gondola or Boxcar. Then the train heads out to the blue line looping around, to return to town from the east. Here's an area that might change, I should create a run around of some sort, allowing the train to return on the YELLOW line. Thus leaving the BLUE line as the "interchange". I think I might be able to squeeze in another small industry too, facing the other direction.

More images below, whatcha all think!?

- Motive Power & Rolling stock
Road freight power historically consisted of 6 Alco units: (2) RS27, (1) RS11, (1) C-415, (1) C-424/425, & (1) RS-3. As of 2007, QHS has worked on replacing its fleet and is currently running a number of 2000hp, rebuilt EMD units, classfied as GP38-2N's, or GP38-2P's (N for NRE, P for Progress Rail), the latter of which use Cat prime movers. Yard duties held down by a GE 44Ton & GE 70Ton diesel switcher. All units are well equiped for Michigan winters, AC units, snow shields, and winterization hatches. Most units will have dual ended plows and all have ditchlights.

All rock cars are owned by the RR, 27 in total. 3 of which are 100 ton aggregate hoppers used commonly with stamp sands, 4 are single bay ore hoppers though they're used mostly for ballast service now, and the other 20 are Greenville built two bay 100 ton cars.
QHS will also have a small interchange fleet of boxcars, flat cars, & gondolas due to copper haulage (approx. 25 box, 15 flat, & 15 gondola). A portion of these stay in house for internal moves, I.E. float or mass copper.
Other rolling stock is interchange.
MOW equipment will be minimal, consisting of a flanger (for snow), small 120T or so crane, kitchen car & track cars, and what ever else pops up.

The RR owns two cabeese (cabooses), for any required backing moves, or if FRED's are not working correctly.

- Paint
A small portion of QHS's units were either purchased in a yellow paint variation, or repainted into a variation of the yellow scheme. The C415 however still lives on in a dual patched SP Bloody Nose'esque paint scheme. One unit still carries a shortly used red & yellow paint scheme. Most lettering is in RR Roman.

Both Steam engines are a common steam engine black. Lettering is a classic RR Roman

Rolling stock is either black, gray, boxcar red, or tuscan red. A number of cars are patched, or partial repaints. Lettering varies greatly, as does manufacturer.
Being such a small road, rolling stock is numbered in between units, and by type as follows:
1-20 MOW rolling stock
60-89 being flat cars
101-126 being 3 bay covered hoppers
130-135 being 4 bay covered hoppers
300-379 being TOFC service
5xx being interchange hoppers
7xx being single bay covered hoppers
11xx being 50' boxcars
12xx being 60' boxcars
1300-1329 being pulpwood/bulkhead flats
1330-1369 being gondolas
1370-1399 being woodchip gondolas
1400-1425 being "other" cars
1426-1499 for future expansion (if they run out of room)
21xx being non-interchange hoppers