• Track Capacities at Barrett Power?

  • Discussion of the past and present operations of the Long Island Rail Road.
Discussion of the past and present operations of the Long Island Rail Road.

Moderator: Liquidcamphor

  by vince
Greeting All,
I am in the process of laying out the 1950's era trackwork at the Barrett Generating Station (LILCO) at Island Park on the LIRR Long Beach branch and ask if anyone "knows" the track capacities in the four tracks in the coal car storage yard?

I do have the Emery Map Long Beach Branch M.P.20-21 but the storage track capacitys are not mentioned.
Here is a screen capture of the model and a diagram of the tracks I have installed.
Open Rails 2015-03-31 Barrett.jpg

The Coal Car Storage labled in the second screen capture are the ones in question. That is a ten car rack shown parked.
The first pic is supposed to be 2xDD1 power but I don't have that model yet and so used 2xPRR B-1's. :P
The storage tracks are out of sight behind the camera in the model picture, around on the south side next to Long Beach Road.
Any help appreciated.
  by vince
Hi Steve,
I have the map at the link you posted. Thanks.

The map of the Barrett Generating Station is on Emery LB Map milepost 20-21 which incidently is two maps prior to the LB Station. It's those 4 Coal Car Storage track are the question: How many cars do they (used to) hold.

Link to map >>>===> http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/lirrtr ... p20-21.jpg" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

They were torn out around 1960 or so . . . just guessing on that point. They are certainly not present today.
  by Backshophoss
You're best bet would be to look up a LIRR ETT in that time period,siding car capy was based on 40ft cars(a PRR practice)
that's a way to figure out how many ft of track was needed and add a half a car to it as a fudge factor.
  by vince
I've been doing many searches for a the last few days now. No ETT for the Long Beach Branch I could find.
Thats why I posted figuring a retiree would know the answer.
If I don't get an answer here I'll use Google Maps to measure as the old rail remains are still visible.
Meanwhile I have lots of other scenery to install and that goes slow to get the detail right.

This route when I release it will be only runnable under the Open Rails freeware new train simulator. It uses MSTS content but is too detailed fot the old 14 year old MSTS simulator.
I didn't know (found during searches) the plant was de-commisioned and the county and LIPA want to restart it, all new gensets and switchgear burning natural gas.

thanks for the suggestion backshop.
  by Backshophoss
100 cars at 40 ft per car,you need 4,000 ft of track to hold the cars,then add 500ft of track as the fudge factor.
2 1000 ft tracks are for empties out,2 1000 ft tracks for loads in.
LILCO had their own "critter" for in plant switching,
Figure on Box cars for parts and equipment,Flat cars for poles,and transformers and generator pieces
as needed.
To keep things fluid,90 coal cars max in storage 1 box at the dock, 1flat of poles.
Just a thought :wink:
  by vince
Thanks for the suggestions. Looking at Google Earth it seems the original fence line would have limited the storage tracks capacity to about 20 cars each.
Now if the MP15 engine physics I'm using are correct I can just make it up the Maspeth grade on the Lower Montauk with 20 coal load + hack so it stands to reason (unless someone who actually knows what the track capacitys were) for me to make the tracks to hold 20 0n the short track and 30 on the longest track.
I can do that without passing the East fenceline on the LILCo property . . . I think. I'll have to play with it to fudge it out buts that the fun of modeling the LIRR in a virtual layout where distances involved are actually what they really are.

Do you know what the actual loaded coal consist was in # of cars? I need to include the Hack too as the era I'm modeling is 1940-1955 where the Rockaway Beach line lives and the Bat Ridge was still under the wires. Incidently those two branches are complete with fully detailed scenery.

See my photo album at Trainsim.com for pictures. Here >>>===> http://www.trainsim.com/vbts/album.php?albumid=248" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Thanks again for the heads up on 'The Light' and a big thanks to Arrts Archives for the switching procedures there.
best regards,
EDIT ADD: I have carefully measured the available space where the tracks were located using Google Earth. I can see some remnants of the storage tracks so I know I'm in the correct location. So . . .
From the access road (where the tracks divide from one to 4 tracks) to the North fence line ( actually the edge of Hog Creek) is very close to 405 meters or about 1330 feet. Thats what I'll work with.

Thanks to Hoss for the suggestions. I am also going to remove the wye I built in (see my first post map) as it was not there in the prototype. From reading the method used to drop coal and pickup empties the engines were not turned around, just run the mile down to LEAD (double to single track near the bridge) to run around the emptys parked on the #2 main, back in via the crossover and then pulled forward onto #1 main for the return to Holban.

I just finished running a test activity running 10 loads from the LIC float dock yards up the hill and returned the empties to Holban. Two and a half hours keeping all speed limits and making the Arrts Archives describe moves at LILCo. I can live with that :P
Back to pounding spikes.
Last edited by vince on Wed Apr 01, 2015 7:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by nyandw
Thanks for the suggestions. Looking at Google Earth it seems the original fence line would have limited the storage tracks capacity to about 20 cars each. Agree, see below Item #1


1. go to http://www.historicaerials.com/ and search for Island Park, NY Click on the 1966 map, zoom and count the hoppers! Sure looks like 20 hoppers would be about right.

2. Hack: Image at Holban Yard 1956 from the roster: http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/lirrcabooseroster.htm

3. 1951 Moody's Investor Guidebook info LIRR inbound from connections:

Car Type Carloads Tonnage % Cars in consist 29/100
Hard Coal hopper 18,608 1,080,223 21.3%
Soft Coal hopper 6,376 369,447 7.3%

I have edited the below for posting here: LIRR Coal Operations by Jim Guthrie http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/lirr%2 ... ations.htm

Essentially, each silo was filled with different sizes and types of coal. Most domestic users preferred anthracite, (hard coal) because it made far less smoke. But some found Coke very useful, and some bituminous. The latter had other storage problems, including the penchant for spontaneous combustion in certain circumstances. The switch to concrete was in part because of this -- there are some interesting accounts of coal pockets burning over the years -- especially older types

Further, the anthracite (and coke and bituminous wholesalers and distributors) tried product differentiation/branding -- so in the early days, anthracite might be sold as "Free Burning White Ash" or "Lehigh Red Ash" or some such; some had catch phrases like Lehigh Valley 's "Makes Warm Friends" or even coloring the anthracite: many of us know "Blue Coal" which the DL&W colored with a tint for product differentiation (most of it was actually Free Burning White Ash), but the Philadelphia and Reading added red spots (red=Reading), Old Company Lehigh added red disks, while Payne added Orange disks -- all sold by various retailers served by the LIRR.

[The D&H's Hudson Coal Company colored their anthracite silver in the 1950s, although the D&H had pretty much pulled out of the entire NYC area before WWI. But when DL&W and Hudson merged around 1960, they sold both "Blue" and "Silver" anthracite for awhile, and it appears that a few dealers on Long Island may have sold both for awhile maybe 1960-62.]

In any case, there were a variety of sizes for home use -- Egg, Chestnut (or nut), Pea and Buckwheat were especially popular -- the latter generally cheaper than the larger sizes, but generally less efficient as well. If a customer wanted Chestnut, they didn't want Buckwheat <g>.

Two other things are important to understand: The anthracite railroads **hated** to see cars go off line -- so few did (despite railfan mythology about carfloats and the Poughkeepsie Bridge <g>). Most coal was dumped on the NJ side into barges and delivered around NY Harbor points -- some reloaded into rail cars on the NY/LI side. We know that there were exceptions -- Burns Bros., for example had contracts with DL&W Coal for rail delivery both on the LIRR and South Brooklyn Railway. Cheers, Jim Guthrie
  by vince
Hi Steve,
Yah, 20 seems about right and more to the point will fit in the space I have surveyed <G>
So it's gonna be: Shortest track 20 cars and each of the other three progressivly more capacity due to the switch arrangment. THe end-of-track buffers are all lined up neatly both on the Emery Map and the photos and Google Earth. Nailed!
  by dlandw
Any idea when the plant switched from coal to oil? I was excited to see 2 or 4 coal hoppers on the wye at the plant a few times in the early 1970s, but that was my only recollection of them. I always wondered how the coal hoppers got there, since the thought of a diesel locomotive, or freight of any kind on the Long Beach Branch seemed so implausible.

I also recall being fascinated by the plant's industrial switcher. I think it may have been a Whitcomb, but it could have been a Plymouth, a GE or some other make. I used to sit in a backward-facing seat on the right side of a westbound train leaving Long Beach to be able to catch a glimpse of it peeking out of its shed, which was parallel to the tracks. It was painted a dull mustard yellow color (like a faded school bus), possibly with maroon accents? Not sure about the maroon part, as I only got fleeting glimpses of it.

Al "dlandw"
  by Kelly&Kelly
The switcher went to the LIRR where it became one of the Morris Park dinkeys.

A natural gas pipeline was laid between Jersey and Long Beach in 1966 to supply gas for the plant. Gas and oil was used concurrently with coal for several years, then the coal was abandoned.
  by krispy
Search the archives of this website for a post from DukeofQ (sp?). At one time JJ talked about switching that plant, making the move out of Valley, crossing over and trying to get it done without banging any of the Long Beaches. I do believe he mentions what the power plant could handle.
  by Kelly&Kelly
krispy wrote: Sun Dec 11, 2022 2:00 pm Search the archives of this website for a post from DukeofQ (sp?). At one time JJ talked about switching that plant, making the move out of Valley, crossing over and trying to get it done without banging any of the Long Beaches. I do believe he mentions what the power plant could handle.
I believe Conductor JJ Earl's account is saved in Steve Lynch's fantastic site.
"http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/island ... 20park.htm"
  by nyandw
Thanks, Kelly&Kelly. My main Table of Contents page for the LIRR is: http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/lirrcontents.htm

I did locate this short yarn from JJ Earl on the Island Park location along with some maps: http://www.trainsarefun.com/lirr/longbe ... and%20Park
Switching the Coal at Island Park by JJ Earl

"...the coal train used the trailing point cross over east of Long Beach Road to shove across into "The Light". Loads would be placed in the empty tracks and empty cars gathered up and pulled out onto #2 main.

The engines uncoupled and were reversed at LEAD to come back west on #1, over the cross over and pull back west onto #1 stopping for a member of the crew to throw these hand thrown switches back to their rightful position.

All main line crossovers had/have what is called a locking bar halfway between the switches with a lever that, when thrown over, moves a rod that connects to a locking device in each switch that will not allow it to be thrown unless this security device itself is thrown." (Indicated by c. lock on the Emery diagram below)


Perhaps someone might explain the JJ Earl phrase: "...to shove across into "The Light"..."?