• Gardner Gawking

  • Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Discussion relating to the current operations of the Boston & Maine, the Maine Central, and the Springfield Terminal railroads (as well as the Delaware & Hudson while it was under Guilford control until 1988). Official site can be found here: PANAMRAILWAYS.COM.
Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Discussion relating to the current operations of the Boston & Maine, the Maine Central, and the Springfield Terminal railroads (as well as the Delaware & Hudson while it was under Guilford control until 1988). Official site can be found here: PANAMRAILWAYS.COM.

Moderator: MEC407

  by jaymac
0320-0550/05-01-2019 -- as the timespan might indicate -- was busy. Just as soon as the scanner turned on, so did the 7.8 talker, no surprise since the rhythm of low-throttle 4-stroke exhaust was in the air. I didn't get any older due to suspended animation at the crossing cuz the no defects came at 0323, a good 5 minutes before I got there. Never heard an acknowledgment, but there are topographic challenges in the area. To finish off, D-3 called Form D G301 fulfilled at 0347, Q427 with -- mebbe -- CSXT 4797 being west and clear of Burncoat. There was a following question about whether they would be leaving the property, the unheard-by-me answer being rogered. Did seem like another light-power move.
Bak to chronology: At 0335, D-3 would give AY-3 with the 7528 a breaking-to-me 241 involving 2, Freight Main, and Willows, followed in a couple by asking if they were going back to Ayer and then adding that AY-4 was moving around in there.
At 0346, D-3 would reach out to 22K with NS 7623, advising that there was a WB freight going through North Leominster and that they would pull down to Catacunemaug Road, more evidence of "Slab City" evidently no longer being in use. The 0350 approach to Wachusett showed the 333 WLs all at Stop and a stopped 22K with NSs 7623, 7596, and 9422 on 1. There was no brightness to the east, so a trip east to the 333 ELs with the 1 EL at Medium Clear and then west to the 334s was taken, where the 2 EL was at Approach Medium and the 1 stagger and Controlled Siding EL at Stops. Back at 333, the east was getting whiter at 0407, KCIRs 7541 and 7517 making noise and hauling 22 racks west at 0409. 0412 was when the 333 1 WL went to Clear, and marker calls were exchanged. 22K was on the move at 0413, 14 racks and 107 well and table positions east at 0419. There were a coupla MT slots up front, but the rear half-or-so was all MT.
A straight shot up Da Hill was taken, and AY-4 made their presence known on the way. The 345s were initially dark, but by the time the yard survey -- 4 almost FP-FP with general and a few racks and mebbe a half dozen rack loads on 1 from just west of New Switch and onto the Extension, a Slow Approach was now showing on the Single EL, all other 345s at Stop. An offering was made, during which and at 0436, the Slow Approach got called. The WB came to a stop on 2 with the markers just a bit west of the air plant, which had been quiet. Also, if the cars on 4 were the same ones johnhenry had seen one 04-30, it looked like the yard air was no longer connected. Hold on jaymac! "Markers?"" Yep, Besides a blinking Mr. Blinkie, there was a knuckle flag. Never heard any transmissions from them, but they were probably an ED-9. At 0445, a breaking D-3 would reach out to the LGT, the clear parts involving OX and asking how many cars they were bringing down, followed by the request to stand by a minute. Not that it means anything, but naught further was heard to, from, or about the LGT. The LGT in the Fitchburg area could go far to explaining the earlier puzzlement of the routing for the 22K/WB meet at 333.
During the straight EB shot down Da Hill and at 0451, D-3 would engage in a broken-to-me discussion about a Line 4 for 354 to 363 and a meet at Tyters. 0455 would be when "AYPO'" would get heard, followed at 0456 by a Yard Channel exchange between AY-4 and D-3 involving waters and AY-4 being definitely clearer than D-3, and at 0508, the 333 WLs were dark.
Following a refueling stop, the 330.8 WBs were both at Clear and the 330 WLs predictably at Stops. The GL and FG WLs were dark, and at 0519, NewBlue 350 was sitting dark and solo on West Side.
Further east, the EB staggers for Derby were dark 0522, and a couple earlier nothing LGT-wise had been visible west from the old station platform.
After a coupla antenna-switching shoutouts, D-3 would give 22K the 0529 OK to continue east to Camp, the yarding instructions being 2 to 3, and hopefully then to 1 if it had gotten cleared. Didn't hear anything about racks or power. 0542 was when D-3 told POED that it was OK to take North Leominster, and 0545 was the start of Yard Channel -- thus garbled to me by then -- exchanges between D-3 and 22K.
  by johnhenry
Regarding last post; all 3 yard tracks were pulled by the P&W yesterday - I don't have the knowledge to know if there was any advantage to keeping air on one of the cuts of cars since the others didn't have air. Also, I believe those KCIR this morning were the same as yesterdays ED-8. Another thing, at 8am today 427 was sitting at New Bond with 3 engines and over 50 cars. It is my understanding that the 7.8 detector is standalone (not part of the crossing circuit) so 1/2 mile train at 10 mph is about 3 minutes.
  by jaymac
johnhenry » Wed May 01, 2019 8:16 am
...Another thing, at 8am today 427 was sitting at New Bond with 3 engines and over 50 cars. It is my understanding that the 7.8 detector is standalone (not part of the crossing circuit) so 1/2 mile train at 10 mph is about 3 minutes.
I'm definitely not a signal engineer or maintainer, but I've been at the crossing when the gates lift. The same time the gates lift, the talker gives its report. I'd be surprised if the same relays that energize and de-energize the crossing protection don't also control the talker circuitry. I never saw what triggered the talker pre-0330 this morning. It could have been a WB move or even PAR power headed back from Greendale to Ayer. By my eyeballs at the Rtes. 12/140 UGB and scanner plus wristwatch from a bit north, the 04-26 Q427 with 2 units and 47 cars took 4 minutes and change to transit the talker circuit.
  by jaymac
For 0328-0520/05-03-2019, things were of a sound-rather-than-sight nature, 0328 was when the scanner got turned on, the sound being D-3 repeating what seemed like the hazardous positions of AYPO's train info, adding that he'd talk to D-2 and see if he could give them a better signal at CPF-AY. The situation -- like the weather -- got a bit more than murky at 0339 when D-3 advised AYPO with the 7835 that there were signal guys at the Willows, and he'd call AYPO to advise when it was OK to proceed east. There was some unattributable Yard Channel garble, and at 0349, D-3 gave AYPO to OK to proceed on signal indication.
At 0356, there was AY-4 radio activity, followed in a minute by garble to AY-3, more about both of whom later. At 0359, the 333 WLs were dark, as would be things at 334 and 335. On the way up Da Hill and at 0412 and again at 0413, D-3 would reach out to AY-3 with the 7595, but naught further would be heard in the short term.
Up Da Hill, the 345s were -- and would remain so while I was there -- dark. Yard 4 was pretty much FP-FP with racks west and general east, ditto Yard 2 with just general, and from the switch west, Yard 1 had racks. For the Sameoldsameold Ledger entries, the House's brush-cutter and the Heywood's untucked stone remained constant. A coupla minutes was invested at the Jade lot, and the air plant was quiet.
An offering was made, and a straight EB shot undertaken, more sound coming at 0426 when D-3 called Form D G306 fulfilled, Q427 being east of Burncoat by marker, and -- mebbe -- tying down at New Bond. At least 6 D-3 Form Ds since 0001? Sounds busy. At 0430, 400 completed their air, and at 0431, the 333 WLs were dark.
Further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Stop for 1 and Clear for 2, the 330 1 WL a Slow Approach, and the GL WLs darkness. The FG 1 WL was at Clear, showing that 400 would be Track 1 for at least a bit. Why were the FG WLs lit with 400 not yet east of 333? Sitting dark on 2 across from the power substation was NewBlue 5936 and at least 1 trailer followed by general. Dunno if EDPO or ED-8. At 0446, NewBlue 350 was fsitting dark in the FI-1/2 parking spot.
At 0448, D-3 reached out to AY-3, but the vagaries of topgraphy for Summer and North Streets garbled the rest of the convo. Some enlightenment for a number of situations came at 0452 when D-3 spoke with AY-4, advising that AY-3 had been set back and was good to 0730. AY-4 said they'd clear the freight off 1, and D-3 said that as soon as AY-3 was in the yard, he'd turn the pig loose.
At 0455, both EB staggers for Derby were at Approach. Dunno if 22K was that long or if something/somebody/somebodies else might be going on.
Occasional AY-4 transmissions were heard, but naught further about either AY-3 or the held pig as of 0520.
  by jaymac
For 0325-0515 (yes, less than 2 hours)/05-06-2019, things were generally quiet. The first clear reception was D-3 telling somebody something about about coming back through Moores, and that wasn't until 0339.
At 0353, the 333 WLs were dark, the same at expectable intervals for things at 334 and 335, and at 0404 and on my way up Da Hill, AY-4 would make their presence known.
Up Da Hill, the 345s were and would remain -- for a few minutes at least -- dark. There was general on the westerly half of Yard 4 and loaded racks on Yard 1 from the switch west to about the easterly end of the Pratt yard. There were no changes in the brush-cutter and untucked stone status, and despite an offering having been made, the straight shot EB was quiet.
At 0423, the 333 WLs were again dark. At 0426, there was D-3 garble to AYPO, more about which in a bit. Further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Stop for 1 and a Clear for 2, the 330 1 WL at Slow Clear, and the GL and FG WLs dark. At 0435, the FI-1/2 parking spot was MT, but further east, a dark and west-facing 7???? was buried on West Side, mebbe an ED-9. At 0436, AY-4 would engage in a convo with themselves about clearing Track 1 per D-3, the cause to reveal itself in a few. At 0437, D-3 would tell AY-3 with the 7595 that it'd be awhile cuz AYPO was coming, and then FI-2 got on the air, sometimes clear and sometimes not. so mebbe from Derby or Lafarge. Never found out.
At North Leominster, 22K was holding on 2 just clear of the platform, the power being dark BNSF 5718 and NS 4333. May Power Control and the Wizard of Wyeing both smile upon photographers of the 23K-to-be! At 0446, the EB staggers for Derby were both at Approach, and 0454 was when D-3 would 241 AY-3 from 1 east to the Single at 312. Naught further was heard, so at least some parts of the runaround probably happened on signal indication. There would be some AY-4 garble at 0505 probably related to clearing 1.
One of the other contributions to quietude was the lack of anything to, from, or about Q426/427.Just to double-check, both the Rtes. 12/140 UGB and the Shrewsbury Street/MP X6 crossing were eyeballed, naught being seen matching naught having been heard.

Edited to correct branding of 22K trailer from NS 4333 to BNSF/b] 4333. which shows that lit number boards can give a false sense of identification, especially in the dark.
Please see Bob Sprague's http://photos.nerail.org/s/?p=250513" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; of 05-06.
  by jaymac
For 0325-0525/05-08-2019, events -- as will be seen -- for AY-3 might best be summed up in a line from Mad Max: Beyond Thunder Dome: "Plan? There ain't no plan!" There was not a plan, but a series of evolving plans. AY-3 was even featured in the first clear reception at 0340 when D-3 said they were OK to 312 and OKd proceeding at 312 on signal indication.
Things shifted to AY-6 at 0348 when D-3 advised that there were 9 cars on Freight Main West and that FI-2 was also there, and mebbe AY-6 could cross over before them and to keep him advised how they were doing.
At 0359, the 333 WLs were dark, the same holding in sequence at 334 and 345. There was some static on the way up Da Hill, but naught intelligible or attributable.
The 345s were and would remain dark dark for the duration of my being there, Yard 2 had general -- including MT centerbeams -- from about midpoint and to the east with at least a pair of racks on the easterly end, There was general from about midpoint to the west on Yard 1 and a solo rack on Yard Lead. The brush-cutter and untucked stone status remained unchanged, and the air plant was quiet except for a sigh of pressure release, and a breaking D-3 at 0415 told someone something about going in Moores first.
The post-offering-straight-shot-down-Da-Hill was quiet except for D-3 calling out to AY-3 on Channel 1, no immediate response heard by me. A minute later, the 333 WLs were no brighter than before.
AY-4 started making themselves heard, and further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Stop for 1 and Clear for 2, the 330 1 WL at Slow Approach.While driving between the dark GL and FG WLs, FI-2's car countdowns could be heard, and at 0443, AYPO with the 7594 called out to D-3, the response lost in the Summer Street Zombie Zone. That was also the time the FI-1/2 parking spot was MT, FI-2 continuing to be active. Tucked away on West Side were west-facing and dark KCIRs 5973 and 7542. No idea if they were the AY-6 mentioned earlier or an ED-9. Oh yeah, at 0449, D-4 told Q426 to tie down at MP X25. Never heard a Form D fulfillment, so dunno when the tie-down happened, but I had heard power on the far side of the Wachusett Reservoir at 0325 and thought it might been Q427, a slight amount of puzzlement having having happened when I didn't hear the 7.8. Precision Scheduled Railroading...
0450 had been the start of a series of D-3 exchanges with AY-3, the first breaking, but calling a cab being clear. The 0453 continuation asked if AY-3 could clear up and tie up at the Milling. There was more, but changing topography and AY-4 activity interfered. 0456 was when the convo continued -- should the cab go to the Pine Tree? There was an EB freight -- AYPO? -- building in the yard and to let D-3 know when they were in the clear and lined and locked normal. That was also the time the EB staggers for Derby were dark. 2 minutes later, the Ayer Yard Master would call the Ayer Utility, 0500 being my first reception of the Ayer Utility. Again topographic changes were interfering.
What happened at 0503? D-3 told AY-3 that the Yard Master had just said he could take AY-3 in the yard and to let him know when they were at WL. Next came some D-3 garble to FI-2, followed at 0507 by AYPO being told it was 15 to a hitch.
At 0514, there was D-3 garble to AY-3, followed by more garble to FI-2. 0518 was when -- mebbe -- 22K got mentioned twice, but with no further intelligible context.
0518 was when D-3 told AY-3 that the Train Master had told him to tell them to coordinate their yarding with AY-4, those sounds being received at 0524 and 0525.
  by jaymac
For 0325-0620/05-10-2019, there were things in motion and me -- for a bit -- not, as the time span might indicate. The first proof of the scanner working came at 0336 when D-2 reached out to NA-2, D-3 following close by with his own reach-out to AY-3. To save suspense, naught further would be heard to, from, or about AY-3, although there had to have been other transmissions.
At 0341, D-3 convoyed with Q426, OKing entry at Harvard Switch and advising that the train was ready for them. 0347 would continue the convo -- this time Mount-Wachusett-garbled -- D-3 answering Q426, more about which later.
At 0351, the 333 WLs were dark, as would be things at 334 and 335.
Up Da Hill, the 345s were all at Stop, and the yard MT except for 2 racks just west of the Yard 1 switch. Whether these were the same racks that had been on Yard Lead on 05-08 dunno. The Sameoldsame Ledger definitely included the brush-cutter on the House, but since a PD Gardner cruiser was engaged in obeying the First General Order in the Jade lot, an up-close eyeballing of the Heywood's stone situation was foregone. An offering was made in preparation for seeing what might be to the west and shunting the 345s. As a hint of possible future road-traffic issues, silt-socks have appeared on ramps and other areas around the Timpany Boulevard rotary. At 0413, ED-9 with the 7517 reached out to D-3, but D-3 renewed his convo with Q426, asking if they were going to be able to get in the yard, garble next ruling, then something about tying down emerging partially clearly. ED-9 tried a coupla other times to raise D-3, covered hoppers had been visible from the Wilkins Road dogleg, and an Approach was visible on the CPF-346 WL. At 0430, D-3 told ED-9 they'd get moving when POED got past. Time was what got past, the 346 WL going to Clear at 0450, the west remaining quiet until 0500 or so, and the 346.6 coming on at 0503. Noise got made and 7561 and 7627 plus 64 got a no defects, 43°, and 3850' at 0506, marker calls being exchanged in a couple. If the power numbers seem familiar, they formed the POED power couple in Bruce Macdonald's http://photos.nerail.org/s/?p=250550" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; of 05-09 transiting Wachusett. There were company gons and a hopper up front, 2 or 3 company cars among the boxes, a Dunkley-wrapped centerbeam, and a string of MT centerbeams in the mix. Given the time that ED-9 had been sitting, wondering had commenced about whether there might be something occupying a track between 354 and 363. Or mebbe the idea was to keep EDPO moving.
At 0507, the east got bright an loud, KCIrs 7517 and 5973 and NewBlue 5936 moving west. What followed almost looked like 287 of yore -- first 27 racks and then another 16 racks with 17 general -- full-size and shortie covered hoppers, paper-service tanks, and a few boxes -- in between. The 346.6 came on at 0509 and gave a no defects, 43°, 4778', and train too slow at 0516.
During the straight shot down Da Hill, a breaking D-3 OKd 22K to proceed east, the yarding instructions being 1 to 2 and racks to San-Vel. What was to happen to the power never got to me.
At 0530, the 333 WLs were dark, EDPO mebbe holding at 335, and at 0532, 402 announced the air was OK and the trainman back on board. Further east and during a refueling stop, a presumed POED with the 7506 and 2 more KCIRs plus 19 -- yes, nineteen -- got west of the rotary River Street UGB at 0538 with wrapped centerbeams and slurries predominating. Mebbe 1 of the trailers was being ferried to the shops or mebbe -- especially since naught had been heard about POAY/AYPO -- the presumed POED had done their heavy hauling only as far as Ayer.
The 330.8 WBs showed a Clear for 1 and an Approach -- naturally -- for 2, the 330 WLs being Stops, and the GL and FG WLs dark. At 0549, NewBlue 350 was in the FI-1/2 parking spot, and D-3 did some Yard Channel garbling. At 0554, the EB staggers for Derby were dark, and at 0558, D-3 thanked 404 for whatever they had just said.
0603 was first reception clearly attributable to AY-4, garble mode being in effect until the 0620 end of listening.
  by jaymac
For 0328-0535/05-13-2019, there was a good mix of activity modes, starting off at 0328 with D-3 telling AY-3 -- later IDed as with the 7500 -- they'd have to wait for run-down time. There would also be a number of broken exchanges with TC T101, sum and substance never emerging clearly. 0335 was when a breaking D-3 would roger whatever ??PO -- speculation to follow -- had just said. 0345 was when more garble would erupt, first OKing somebody east on signal indication, then more to TC T101, next something to FI-2 -- more about which later -- and then something to AY-4.
At 0353, 22K with NS 9793 reached out to D-3, saying that were at 335 and asking if they'd hold at 333. D-3 responded that they'd hold at Catacunemaug Road -- guess that means that despite the persistence of other older IDs that "Slab City" is truly among PAS verba non grata -- but then changed the holding point to Derby, more -- again -- to follow.
The 0355 arrival showed a Medium Clear on the 333 1 WL and 22K coming 'round the bend. NSs 9793 and 9202 did their best-possible elephant impression, followed by 15 racks and 89 positions -- mostly wells but with a few 5- and tri-pack tables thrown in -- getting east at 0401. There were 2 MT slots and 1 actual, real, honest-to-goodness trailer. Things went back to dark at 0405, so I was WB, seeing darkness at 334 and 335. During that trip there was D-3 garble to AY-2 and more mutual garble between D-3 and 22K.
On the way up Da Hill and with Mount Wachusett blockage, D-3 breakingly told someone they'd have to wait cuz a freight --22K? --was coming on 2.
Up Da Hill, the 345s were -- and would for my brief stay remain -- dark. There was general on Yard 2 from the easterly end of the Pratt yard to about midpoint and -- no surprise -- loaded racks on Yard 1 from about the same point east to just clear of the switch. Brush-cutter on the House and untucked stone on the Heywood remained in effect.
The post-offering straight shot down Da Hill was relatively quiet -- 0430 with a garbled exchange -- yarding instructions? -- to 22K, followed at 0432 with a roger for whatever AY-3 had just said. At 0435, AY-4 told someone that they were working on clearing Track 4, but the engine -- number not stated -- was a dog.
0437 was when the 333 WLs were all at Stop. Sitting dark on 1 were KCIRs 7561, 7675, and 7585 plus general that would extend however far west of the 334 ELs. Besides lotsa covered hoppers, there was an MT centerbeam in the mix, producing the never-confirmed guess that this was an AYPO and mebbe the other party in the 0335 D-3/??PO convo.
The decision was made to stay ahead of 400, and further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Stop for 1 and a Clear for 2, the 330 1 WL a Slow Clear, the GL and FG WLs dark. At 0455, dark and solo NewBlue 350 -- a marker on its westerly end -- was in the FI-1/2 parking spot. At 0458, D-3 called out to AYPO with the 7643 asking if they were east and clear of AY by marker -- the answer lost to me -- and following up with 3 broken calls to TC T101.
At 0508, the EB staggers for Derby showed an Approach Limited for 1 and a Stop for 2, plus 22K's marker, the Approach Limited dropped at 0508 by 400's total of 3 flats and 1 bi plus the 1070.
0510 was when Q427 -- power ID lost to me -- got their Form D G302 fulfilled, There was a question about New Bond, answer unheard and unrepeated, followed by thanks and good day. One thing unheard was a 40.2 report for the 400.
At 0518, it sounded like D-3 was calling POAY, occasional and unattributable garble being a feature for the rest of the trip, save for 0534 when AY-4 advised D-3 that 1 was clear, mebbe clearing the way for 22K.
  by jaymac
For 0325-0540/05-15-2019, there was activity, but not always with the best timing. From 0325 and on, there would be spurts of Yard Channel garble, some clarity coming at 0335 when D-3 advised AY-3 -- more about which later -- that AYPO was sticking out in the interlocking and suggesting choreography for AY-3's move and subsequently asking if they were lined and locked and checked for normal movement on the the #1 at the Milling, AY-3's response being unheard by me, but D-3's roger being heard.
At 0355, the 333 WLs were dark, things at 334 and 335 dittoing sequentially. On the way up Da Hill, reception of what AYPO was saying was compromised, "strung out over Harvard-Groton" being clear.
Up Da Hill, the 345s were all at Stop while POED with KCIR 7561 plus a never-legible litter-mate were pulling the Yard. Left temporarily to the east was a solo rack. Why? It had the marker. More choreography was being discussed to make things easier for another train. Just guessing, but since there was now naught in the the yard, mebbe it was 22K. When I started my return, the 345s were still at Stop. Yes, the brush-cutter and untucked stone were as before, and equally yes, an offering was made.
Dunno it was atmospherics from the persisting mist and/or approaching solstice, but things were quiet until 0450 when the 400 OKd themselves to depart, a total of 3 flats and 1 bi plus the 1130 doing things in a timely manner. Further east, the 330.8 WBs were both at Stop, and at 0457, 400 dropped the Medium Clear on the 330 1 WL.
The GL Controlled Siding WL was at Medium Clear and the FG 1 WL at Clear, the affect of being on 1 at North Leominster being relayed by the E to the C. At 0503, NewBlue 350 was in the FI-1/2 parking spot, and wonder of wonders, the the westerly stretch of Summer Street was no longer unpaved. Before drivers get too used to a smooth road, just over the line on North Street in North Leominster, there persist some divots.
A strange thing happed at 0506 on Main Street after after turning off North Street -- just "7.8" was heard. Even 300 cars should clear the Temple Street/Rte. 140/MP X7.8 crossing before I would. At 0508, 400 had already dropped the 1 EB stagger for Derby, but the 2 was showing an Approach.
At the crest of 190 just after leaving Rte. 2 and at 0513, a scratchy "no defects" was heard. It was in 400's 40.2 time-window, but the voice sounded like the 7.8.
At 0515, a scratchy D-3/AY-3 exchange started -- were they west and clear of AY on 1? Then came a scratchy 1-east-to-1-at-AY 241. Next was permission for AY-3 with the 7500 to reverse direction from where they stood and proceed west. Were they going in East Wye? The response got stepped on, so D-3 requested a repeat, unheard by by me. Mixed in all of that was AY-4 being active.
There would continue to be Yard Channel garble, but just as I was about to turn things off at 0435, Q427 would start a series of reach-outs to D-3, the timing supporting that the 0513 "no defects" was from Q427's transit of the 7.8. D-3, however, was involved with AY-3 on Yard Channel, and as of 0540, Q427's Form D had not yet been called fulfilled.
  by jaymac
For 0325-0525/05-17-2019, more was heard than seen, starting with a 0327 AYPO-with-the-7655 shoutout to D-3, a static eruption following, and another AYPO shoutout to D-3 following at 0327. What followed that was a D-3 shoutout to Q426 with CSXT 5483, resulting in a convo that would show that POAY had already pretty much set the table for them, that Harvard Switch was open for them, and that they should call when they were ready to fulfill their Form D and get a new one.
0336 was when AYPO -- now broken -- gave D-3 their train info, the read-back showing that 7598 was the trailer, they were 1900', 0x28 Watervilles, and 2845 tons, making it sound like Poland Springs MTs were the sum and substance of the train. Oh yeah, it was a PAR marker.
At 0338, D-3 answered Q426, fulfilling Form D G345 at 0540. So at least 45 05-16 Form Ds for D-3? Guessing there was a good amount of Line 4 business. 0340 was the time effective for Q427's Line 2 G303 from MP X25 to Burncoat, CSXT 5340 being the new leader.To finish up Q427 activity, there would be a 0343 garbled D-3 read back of train info, 3645 tons being clear, followed at 0350 by a breaking D-3 transmission about a Pine Hill Road tie-down, and 0351 by more garble, mebbe the cancellation of G303 so Q427 would go into unattended-equipment mode. There was even a 0505 427 garble
Back to chronological order: At 0342, somebody -- AYPO? -- would get the OK to proceed on signal indication, and a minute later, EDPO with the 7643 would be told they would follow AYPO and meet POED at Westford, and at 0400, the 333 WLs were dark, the same to follow at 334 and 335.
Up Da Hill, the 345s were and would remain dark, as well, and at 0415, a garbled D-3 would reach out to POED with the 7517, more to follow. Yard 2 had general-- mostly and mebbe all covered hoppers -- from the westerly FP to Chair City Oil, and except for the Sameoldsameold Ledger entries of the House's brush-cutter and Heywood's untucked stone, there was naught of note. At 0416, a still-breaking D-3 would reach out to AY-5 with the 7595, followed in a bit with an OK to proceed on signal indication.
The post-offering and straight-shot trip east was quiet, except for a 0425 breaking D-3 reach-out to ED-9 involving finding 0x25 racks and mebbe working together at Fitchburg. At 0430, the 330 WLs were again dark, and at 0434 there was a 241, only "241" and "stop signal" being clear.
Following a refueling stop, the 330.8 WBs were both at Clear and the 330 WLs both at Stop, the GL and FG WLs both dark. At 0346, there was a garbled "AY-4, " more activity to follow. At 0348, NewBlue 381 was sitting dark in the FI-1/2 parking spot, and former FI-1/2 power NewBlue 350 was still on East Side, but on the west end of NewBlue 5936 and KCIR 75?? on a presumed ED-9, the 350 presumably headed to the Deerfield shops.
At 0453, AY-4 began a 40-car countdown, and at 0457, the EB staggers for Derby were dark, and next began D-3 reach-out attempts to EDPO with the 7643 at 0515 and 0516, followed at 0517 by D-2 -- yes, two -- asking AYPO to give EDPO a call, followed at 0518 by D-3 talking with EDPO about a tie-down at ????, dead air, and then "Correct." While the work-around did work, it would been needed if -- well, Faithful Readers, you can apply any of my radio rants.
AY-4 would continue providing proof that my radio was working, but during the listening period usual proof-provider AY-3 was among the missing, as was 22K.
  by jaymac
For 0325-0535/05-20-2019, activity -- both audible and visible -- was spotty, bur busy. There was some initial static, and then at 0338, D-3 repeated what were probably the hazardous locations for Q427, asking if they were about to enter DCS territory, and wishing them a safe trip. 0345 was when 427 said they were into DCS and D-3 acknowledged. To save suspense, naught further was seen or heard from 427 until 0552 as I was keyboarding and crossing noise was being made.
At 0358, the 333 WLs were dark, as would be things at 334 and 335. At 0400, there was a clear "AY-4." followed at 0402 by Yard Channel garble between D-3 and mebbe AY-5.
On the way up Da Hill and at 0410, there was a clear "POED, OK on the marker," but since the 345s would be dark, it was probably from Fitchburg, a supposition later to gain more support. The yard was pretty well crammed -- FP-FP racks on Yard 4, pretty much FP-FP general west and racks east on Yard 2, and rack loads from about the ambulance company on Yard 1 east onto Yard Lead. And yes, no changes to the House or Heywood.
There was some post-offering unguessable garble on the straight shot east, and not only that, but at 0432, the 333 WLs were on with Stops for 1 and 2 and a Medium Clear for the Controlled Siding, as well as WB brightiewhities working their way through the Els. Thank you, Deity Of The CPF-345 Dunks, for extending your power into the territory of the not-yet-open Shrine Of The Deity Of The CPF-333 Dunks! EDPO's matched-set-but-reverse-order NewBlues 3401 and 3400 got 43 west on 1 at 0436 There were covered hoppers (all full-size), boxes that included a Smurf, a few wrapped centerbeams (Daaquam, Irvings, and Twin Rivers), Brand X scrap gons, and a sizable string of slurries on the tail.Dunno how much -- if any -- lifting POED would be doing in Gardner, but 2 units should suffice west of there for what was on 2 and 4. The decision was made to stay ahead of 400 until North Leominster, so it was EB for me.
Further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Clear for 1 and a Stop for 2, the 330 2 WL at Slow Approach, and the GL and FG WLs were dark. At 0448, FI-2 was doing a car countdown, so it was no surprise a minute later that the FI-1/2 parking spot was MT and that a headlight was buried among the covered hoppers to the east. It should also be no surprise that FI-2 was probably the source of the 0410 marker call for POED.
Further further east, 22K was sitting on 2 with the leader's nose right at the west end of the North Leominster platform. UPs 7755 and 6051 and NS 7690 -- may the Wizard of Wyeing et c. -- followed by at least a dozen racks and however many wells and tables. 400 pulled into the station facing an Approach Limited on 1 and Stop on 2 and advised D-3 that the high-level platform on 1 had been damaged, D-3 advising that the Radio Room had been advised yesterday, but said no one was available. D-3 also advised that 400 would be on 2 the rest of the way, the Approach Limited presumably for a Medium Clear on the Derby 1 WL. 0509 was when the 1 stagger got dropped, and yet again, no 40.2 was heard for the 400, although the topography is not favorable and AY-4 was busy.
At 0514, D-3 reached out to AYPO with the 7528, naught further being heard mebbe cuzza AY-4 being busy. There would be a series of semi-broken D-3's-side-of-things with AY-3 and the 7622, suggesting that they might be heading back to the yard, and last words of listening would come before 0535 from AY-4.
  by jaymac
More sounds than sights for 0625-0520/05-22-2018, although the sounds didn't start until 0337 when D-3, after confirming things were lined, locked, and checked for normal movement on the #1 at the Milling, OKd AY-3 with the 75?? to 312 for their runaround, then shifting to AYPO, power unheard, confirming them as 46x61 and 7480 tons, asking for length and hazardous positions, a repeat unheard by me, adding that they'd be held for AY-3 and that it was OK at 0339 to come to the signal. 0342 brought an exchange between the 7655 -- AYPO? -- and D-3 about their right front ditch light being out and D-3 responding that he'd let "them" know about it. To save suspense and probably cuzza transiting Zombie Zones, naught further was heard to, from, or about AYPO. 0345 was another D-3's-side-only exchange with AY-3, advising that something was no longer in effect and that ???? -- Wagon Wheel protection? -- was back in service.
Now began more garble -- Yard Channel -- between ED-9 and D-3, with D-3 asking ED-9 to change over to Road Channel. ED-9 wanted to know if they were taking just the Deerfields or also the racks on Freight Main East. D-3 added something broken about 1 more Deerfield, ED-9 saying if the racks were going, they's hang the marker on them. There was more back and forth, ED-9 to test the Deerfields, D-3 saying that the 0600 recrew would then take the racks. 0352 was when D-3 told FI-2 to take that 1 Deerfield to East Side on put it on top of the racks. It does seem like Fitchburg has become Hill Yard West, and I wonder when the folks with sharp pencils might figure out that reinstalling some of the Hill Yard's lost tracks might increase operational fluidity while decreasing costs. Wait! Wasn't there a grant to do just that?
At 0356, the 333 WLs were dark, as would be the signals at 334 and 335.
There wasn't even garble on the way up Da Hill, and the 345s were and would remain -- at least for my stay -- dark. Yard 4 was almost FP-FP with general west and then racks and then a coupla more general. The westerly end of Yard 1 and Yard Lead had 4 rack loads, and no changes had taken place on either the House or southerly end of the Heywood.
At 0421, D-3 gave what seemed like the time effective for Q427's Form D, asking for time of entry into DCS and whether there were still no restricted or over-dimension cars. The Deity Of The CPF-345 Dunks musta been in full Loki mode this AM cuz I was at The Shrine when the D woulda been given out, and The Shrine is not normally a Zombie Zone. To again save suspense, neither notification nor acknowledgment of DCS entry was heard, but the timing woulda been right to have been in Mount Wachusett's electromagnetic penumbra. AY-4, however, was heard.
At 0429, the 333 WLs were dark, and further east, the 330.8 WBs were both at Clear, and a couple later -- no route having yet been put in -- the 330 WLs were at Stop, the GL and FG WLs being dark. Things were active but unintelligible during the transit of the River, Kimball, and Summer Streets Zombie Zone.
At 0443, NewBlue 381 was sitting dark and solo in the FI-1/2 parking spot, and a bit east and also on East Side were KCIRs 7622 and 7595 plus what were probably the Deerfields of ED-9. Dunno if the racks were part of things yet.
Things immediately west of the North Leominster platform were MT, but at 0451 and a good bit before 400 would be on the circuit, the EB staggers for Derby showed an Approach for ! and Stop for 2. There was no marker visible, but mebbe 22K was holding at Catacunemaug.
For the rest of the trip, there were spurts of static and clarity, the last and 0520 words going to AY-4 when they advised D-3 that the pad was clear.
  by jaymac
The lesson for the 0325-0520 portion of 05-24-2019? Things can and will fail, in this case the crimp on the BNC connector on the cable for my roof antenna, accounting for sparse audio input.
At 0356, the 333 WLs were dark, as would be the 334s, 335s, and 345s in their turn. Yard 4 was pretty well filled with general, Yard 2 with racks, and a pair of rack loads sat on Yard 1 just west of the switch. The Sameoldsameold Ledger continued in unchanged mode -- the brush-cutter on the House and the untucked stone on the southerly Heywood. At 0420, it sounded -- finally -- like AY-3 was involved when D-3 asked somebody how many cars they were bringing back to the yard, rogering whatever got said, and next giving the OK on signal indication at WL to go back to their train
Post offering and at 0428 and also while I was at the crest of Rte. 2 EB, D-3 gave a shoutout to ED-2 with the 353. Increases in both distance and unfavorable topography garbled the rest. For a day with reception issues, that wasn't a bad reception.
At 0435, the 333 WLs maintained their darkness, and AY-4 provided some audio input. Further east, the 330.8 WBs were both at Clear, the 330 WLs at Stop, and the GL and FG WLs dark.
At 0447, dark, solo, and east-facing NewBlue 381 was in the FI-1/2 parking spot, and at 0454, the EB staggers for Derby showed a Clear for 1 and Stop for 2, so mebbe 22K was holding at Catecunemaug. The would be occasional -- no surprise -- unintelligibles for the remainder of the trip.
Aw gee -- my index fingers were just getting warmed up.
  by jaymac
For 0325-0555/05-27-2019, it was -- except for the Keolis schedule -- no holiday on the railroad, especially since the 35W crossover at WL was off power and no shortage of moves was in that area. My awareness of the busyness started at 0326 when D-3 told AY-5 with the 7605 they'd have to line from the 2 to 2 on the Freight Main and then get a 241 back to their train. The 0329 activity was a bit more to the west when D-3 241d AY-3 with the 7605 1 east to 1 at CPF-AY, AYPO with the 7643 becoming the the next convo at 0333 when D-3 said he was ready for their updated train info, repeating 25x54, 5256 tons, and 6284', then asking for the hazmat positions, and hedzupping the off-power situation to the east, advising they'd be lined, all this ending 0335.
AY-3 was asked to advise when they could reverse direction and D-3 found out they were good until 0600.Things shifted to AYPO who got advised that there might be some shuffling at AY cuzza AY-3, but they could come up to East Wye and could move on signal indication, D-3 getting them going when he could and 0337 being the time that convo ended.
Next, it was Q427's turn, heard fairly well from Burncoat at Oakdale. Form D G301 to CSXT 3391 got called fulfilled at 0340, 427 not yet knowing whether CSXT would take them or they'd tie down at New Bond, more to follow.
At 0345, there was heard "ED-9," followed by garble and then "7605." followed by a partial 241 at 0347 for WL. Dunno if the designation change was the result of a rechristening and/or recreate, but more will follow.
At 0357, a breaking D-3 told POED with the 7517 that when something was done, he'd let them race to Derby, and yes, there will be more later. At 0358 -- the same time the 333 WLs were dark -- D-3 gave permission to AY-3 to reverse direction from where they were standing and proceed west at CPF-AY. At 0403, there was a spell of D-3 garble, Mount Wachusett the cause.
The 334s, 335s, and even the 345s would be temporarily dark. At 0410, D-3 answered ED-9 with the 7605, 241ing 2 west to 2 at WL, and a minute later, 241d 1 west to 1 at WL to POED with the 7517, more -- again -- about those 2 to follow. At 0413, a now-garbling D-3 acknowledged whatever Q427 had just said, the D-3 mention of "0413" hinting that they might now be off the property.
The yard had loaded racks both on 2 and 1 onto the Extension. 4 was obscured, so hoonose? No changes this Memorial Day Observed for either the House or southerly Heywood.
An offering was made, and at 0422, D-3 told someone -- POED probably -- that he'd take them up to 335 and that they'd go west after ED-9 cleared. ED-9's clearing continued as a subject of convo at 0425 when D-3 advised AYPO that when that happened, they were OK east on signal indication.
At 0431, the 333 WLs were dark, and at 0432, there was D-3 garble involving POED.
Further east and following a refueling stop, the 330.8 WBs were both at Clear and the 330 WLs -- naturally -- both at Stop. At 0441, there had been a garbled D-3 about a 241 -- probably for WL -- to AYPO,
The GL and FG WLs were dark, and at 0447, east-facing NewBlue 381 was dark and solo in the FI-1/2 parking spot. At 0449, AYPO would reach out to D-3, getting a 2 east at WL to 2 Freight Main 241, the read-back needing a repeat cuzza a step-on and being called correct at 0451, with the additions of accepting signal indication at 312 and D-2 taking them.
Sitting on 2 and snug up at the North Leominster platform was 22K, deets to follow cuz noise was made to the east and course reversal was made to the old station, where ED-9 with KCIR 7605, NewBlue 7552, and KCIR 7561 plus 44 racks and 2 covered hoppers were west at 0456, 0458 being when markers got called, showing that 22K was crewed.
The EB staggers for Derby showed a Stop for 1 and an Approach for 2. There was a broken D-3#/AY-3 exchange about Moores, and by that time, my ADHD had kicked in, so I was EB on Nashau Street until 22K's E hedzupped the C that there was a train coming, so yet another course reversal was coming. That train was POED with noise-making KCIRs 7517 and 7534 plus 37 west at 0507, marker calls to follow. Among the cars were 1 Irving and 1 Scotsburn centerbeams, a buncha MT center beams, some boxes, company gons and covered hoppers -- including a D&H -- and blue WRWK gons.
There was a D-3/22K exchange, 22K advising that the C was back on board after having dealt with handbrakes, a recrew evidently the cause. Now things got electromagnetically weird, at least for me. The substation across the tracks had evidently just come on line, so D-3 was now naught but static. Not only was there static, but the PTC line was now vibrating up and down relative to the HT lines just to its north. Eventually, 22K did a read back of their Form D G305, a Line 13 allowing them to leave North Leominster and effective 0518. In the meantime, the the EB staggers had gone to Approach for 1 and Clear for 2, 1 having been temporarily fouled by an EB doe in the gauge. 0522 was when things got loud to the west, NSs 1194, 9793, and 7655 getting 4 racks and a total of 102 single-high loaded wells and a 5-pack table with 1 MT position east at 0531, things having slowed mebbe cuzza less favorable signals east. Never heard, also never hear yarding instructions or a 40.2 report for 22K.
Busy coupla hours for holiday!
  by jaymac
As the 0325-0515 time span for 05-29-2019 would indicate, there wasn't a great glut of activity. Starting at 0329, D-3 would reach out to POED with the 7727 a number of times, occasional spurts of Yard Channel garble interspersed. Eventually, a D-3/POED convo would get established, D-3 now breakingly advising that he had a speedo addition for them -- 30 for passenger and 25 for freight with signs and BF47 as one of the mileages, followed by more and unintelligible Yard Channel activity.
At 0352, the 333 WLs were all at Stop, a stopped and dark 22K with NSs 9861, 9355, and and 9202 -- the trailers nose to nose -- on 1. A minute later, there was a partial concerning 312, MTs, and a run-around. A later reception would indicate that it might be AY-3 that was involved.
Further west, the 334 ELs and 1 stagger were all at Stop, as would be the 335 ELs and WLs, 22K's marker east of the 335 ELs, but west of the State Road/Rte. 2A UGB. It hasn't been mentioned in a bit, but the tie-handler continued its sedentary lifestyle in the 335 lot.
The trip up Da Hill was quiet, and the 345s were and would stay dark during my stay in Gardner. Yard 1 had loaded racks east onto the Extension with a covered hopper and gon on the east, 2 having racks and 4 general. The status of the House and Heywood had no readily visible changes.
Post-offering, there were a coupla static eruptions during the straight shot EB, AY-4 emerging clear at 0430 and beyond. At 0433, 22K was still in place, and the Controlled Siding WL was at Medium Clear in anticipation of 400. Next, D-3 would reach out to ED-9 asking if Moores was lined and locked normal and rogeringr the response.
Further east, the 330.8 WBs showed a Stop for 1 and Clear for 2, the 330 1 WL at Slow Approach. The GL and FG WLs were dark, the FG condition only temporary cuz at 0444 light NewBlue 381 was WB to FG, presumably to cross the road to East Side. At 0450, the EB staggers for Derby were dark, so no idea where ED-9 or POED might be. 0451 was the start of an AY-3/D-3 convo, AY-3 wanting to shove East Wye to South track -- the MTs mentioned at 0353? -- with D-3 giving an OK on signal indication.
Garble plus occasional AY-4 clarity rounded out the trip, but naught to, from, or about Q426/7 or AYPO was heard, but then Zombie-Zone-abetted timing is everything when it comes to hearing naught.
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