I overheard during railrun that the Carolina Southbounds staging tracks were slightly different in length. It got me to thinking that I might have the same issue. I went back to the layout and discovered that each track in Bangor (Northern Maine Jct.) is in fact slightly longer than the corresponding track in Portland by 6 - 9".
The CSX Shenandoah Div has a point where you measure the train length, so that the dispatcher will know where to have meets based on what sidings you can fit in.
I limit trains to a length that will fit in all of the tracks in staging. A one size fits all approach. However, there are times with car cards that you can have too many cars for the staging track and it would be nice to know if a train will fit with extra cars. The cars range in lengths from 30 - 50 feet, so you don't always know if something will fit. So I measured each track for length and at one end each of the yards I marked the spot where the engine should be and marked the other end of the benchwork with the length for the track and the track number. Once the yardmaster knows the track associated with a train, he should be able to determine what will fit in each track.
The hard part will come when scenery goes in and we'll have to figure out a way to do this and not detract from the scenery.
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5 years ago