Monday, March 7, 2011


A few weeks ago I finally got around to getting the second main track up and running.  While testing things out I found out that there was a problem on one of the older curves that only really affected my Atlas RS5.  Specifically it was a sloppy transition from Code 100 to 83 on a curve - what a stupid place to begin with.  In years past I wouldn't bother going through the trouble to fix it and would just not run six axle locos on that track, but, now, with our eyes toward future operations, the trackwork needs to be bullet proof.  I replaced the offending portion of track, but as you know, one thing leads to another.  Just past the curve is the hidden junction for the Coke Works Branch  - it's never given me problems but it wouldn't hurt to upgrade to a more gentle #6 switch.  While doing this I began to give serious thought to the area beyond the ore yard in the lower works.  The bascule bridge, which never really fit in right has been removed and is in use on one of our Free-mo modules.  The track that it carried is to be relocated back further and partially hidden .  We also intend to push back some of the back drops.  The upside to this work is that this area in the Lower Works will have room for three steelmaking elements, in addition to the electric melt shop.   I plan using this space for a Heavy Forge Shop, a large Machine Shop, and a Pipe Mill.   The pipe mill was actually being built on the Coke Works Branch, however, this structure will now be finished as a Stainless Steel Rolling Mill.    Steel from the Electric Melt Shop will feed the Forge Shop and the Stainless Plant, while the Pipe Mill will receive ingots from the Bessemer Plant.  The Open Hearth Plant will supply the Primary Blooming Mill.    I will also be able to squeeze in the hint of a sinter plant against the back drop and adjacent to A-Furnace and the High Line.  
On to the Open Hearth - As a refresher I have taken a new photo of the overall area I am working with.  You can see the Open Hearth against the back drop with the oven face that I am working on in position.  You can also see the approximate stack locations and just to the left of them will be the gas producers.  The first HO track is for coal for the gas producers and the one on the left, for scrap.  You can also see a spur in the distance for the Dolomite Prep Plant.    In the open hearth there will be narrow gauge trackage - some of it you can see disappearing down a ramp to a staging yard under the furnaces.  There will also be a narrow gauge line directly over the gas producers coal spur where the scrap buggies will be loaded.  I am experimenting with the backdrop colors and building positions so things could change a little.    Also in the photos I started working on a transfer ladle for charging the open hearths.

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