P&EBR Workflows: Hauling Lumber

Setting up operations for my P&EBR layout is similar to operations on layouts representing standard gauge railroads. But there is one fundamental difference. While a standard gauge railroad is part of a nationwide network, with only a small part of the whole represented on the layout, my layout represents the entire railroad system. There are no “beyond the basement” staging yards where freight cars appear and disappear. Both the loading and unloading point for every car on the P&EBR is on the layout.

The P&EBR exists to provides a means for Piedmont-Standard Soapstone to move people and materials. Tracks have been placed to allow the trains to access the points that need transportation services.


Overall trackplan of the Piedmont & East Blue Ridge

In generating work for the railroad to do, I came up with a series of “workflows” that represent routine tasks the railroad will perform. One of the simpler workflows is the delivery of lumber to Piedmont Mill.


Lumber workflow involves pickup at Winwood and delivery at Piedmont.

Piedmont Mill requires a lot of lumber so crates and cribbing can be fabricated for packing the finished soapstone products the mill assembles. The lumber is delivered to Winwood by the Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad. There it is transferred to the narrow gauge flatcars of the Piedmont & East Blue Ridge (green track). The P&EBR then delivers the lumber to the Mill in Piedmont (red track).



Train crews handling lumber would be moving flatcars between Winwood and Piedmont.



The Transfer Warehouse at Winwood is where freight moves between the narrow gauge P&EBR and the standard gauge C&O. The narrow gauge tracks actually run under the roof of the building where an overhead crane facilitates the loading and unloading of freight.



The Mill at Piedmont is where quarried stone is cut, polished, and assembled into appliances and fixtures for commercial and residential construction. An overhead crane is used at the Mill to unload cars.

Delivering lumber is relatively straightforward for the crews. It involves a pickup at the Transfer Warehouse, and a set out at Piedmont Mill.