Dynamic Load Variation and Refuelling

Aim - This page aims to describe how to define the parameters for animation of loads, the loading/unloading of trains, such as tender coal in a steam locomotive, grain and coal wagons, as well as the types of tests that can be undertaken to ensure that it is operating within realistic bounds. It also describes the ways of refuelling the locomotive.

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Route Pickup Points

Wagon Definition

Locomotive and Tender Definition

Picking Up Water from Track Trough or Pan

Key Parameters Used in Open Rails


Open rails supports the functionality to load and unload trains, as well as the ability to refuel the locomotives with either coal, water or diesel. This functionality can be further enhanced with moving animations, so that for example, the coal loads in a tender can rise and fall depending upon normal usage, as well as refueling.

Additionally locomotives, will have their weight and related physics charisteristics change as they use consumables such as coal, water, diesel, etc, and wagons physics characteristics will also change as their load varies. The key physics parameters that will change with load are BrakeForces, Friction (Resistance), Weight, Centre of Gravity, and Drive Wheel weight on locomotives. Variation of wagon physics with load relies on having two known points of reference, ie the conditions when the stock is empty, and the conditions when the stock is full (loaded).

When looking at laod animation configuration, a modeller needs to consider the following two elements: