# 11. Timetable Mode¶

## 11.1. Introduction¶

The timetable concept is not a replacement for the activity definition, but is an alternative way of defining both player and computer-controlled (AI and Static) trains.

In an activity, the player train is defined explicitly, and all AI trains are defined in a traffic definition. Static trains are defined separately.

In a timetable all trains are defined in a similar way. On starting a timetable run, the required player train is selected from the list of available trains. In the timetable definition itself, no distinction is made between running trains – any of the running trains can be selected as player train, and if not selected as such they will be run as AI trains. Static trains are also defined in the same way but cannot be selected as the player train.

As a result, the number of different ‘activities’ that can be played using the same timetable file is equal to the number of trains which are defined in the timetable, less static trains.

Important aspects where the use of specific OR or MSTS items for timetables differs significantly from its use in an activity are shown in bold.

The development of the timetable concept is still very much a work in progress. As work continues, all items are still subject to change.

## 11.2. General¶

### 11.2.1. Data definition¶

The timetable data is defined in a Spreadsheet, and saved as a *.csv file (character separated file) in Unicode format. As the separation character, either ‘,’ (comma), ‘;’ (semi-colon) or the tab character must be used.

Do not select space as the separation character.

As ‘;’, ‘,’, or tab are possible separation characters, these symbols must not be used anywhere within the actual data. Enclosure of text by quotes (either single or double) has no effect. Also, the character ‘#’ should not be used in train names, since it is the prefix for reserved words in the Timetable.

### 11.2.2. File structure¶

The saved *.csv files must be renamed with the extension *.timetable-or. The timetable files must be placed in a subdirectory named OpenRails created in the route’s Activities directory.

### 11.2.3. Timetable groups¶

Multiple timetables can be loaded simultaneously using timetable group files. A group file is a plain text file that has the extension .*.timetablelist-or, that is also located in the OpenRails subdirectory of the route’s Activities directory, and that contains the filenames of one or more timetable files listed on each line. The first line may also start with a # symbol, in which case the text that follows will be used as the timetable group’s display name in the Open Rails menu.

Here is an example of a timetable group file:

#All Northeast Corridor Services - Fri Aug 2018
Amtrak - Fri Aug 2018.timetable-or
MARC Camden Line - Fri Aug 2018.timetable-or
MARC Penn Line - Fri Aug 2018.timetable-or
SEPTA Wilmington-Newark - Fri Aug 2018.timetable-or


### 11.2.4. Pool files¶

Pools can be used to store out-of-service trains on a first-come, first-serve basis, without the need to manually program paths into and out of storage tracks. Pool files are located in the same OpenRails directory as other timetable files. They have the extension .pool-or or .turntable-or.

### 11.2.5. Weather files¶

Weather files, a feature exclusive to timetable mode, orchestrate changes in the cloud cover, precipitation, and visibility factors over the course of the timetable day. They are located in a special WeatherFiles subdirectory of the route’s folder and they have the *.weather-or file extension. The player activates a weather file by selecting it from the timetable mode section of the main menu; this overrides the static weather condition.

### 11.2.6. File and train selection¶

When starting a timetable run, the mode Timetable is selected in the menu. The desired timetable file or timetable group file must then be selected in the Timetable set display.

After selecting the required timetable, a list of all trains contained in that timetable is displayed and the required train can be selected.

Season and weather (static or file-defined) can also be selected; these are not preset within the timetable definition.

## 11.3. Timetable Definition¶

### 11.3.1. General¶

A timetable consists of a list of trains, and, per train, the required timing of these trains. The timing can be limited to just the start time, or it can include intermediate times as well.

At present, intermediate timings are limited to ‘platform’ locations as created using the MSTS Route Editor.

Each column in the spreadsheet contains data for a train and each row represents a location. A cell at the intersection of a train and location contains the timing data for that particular train at that location.

Special rows and columns can be defined for general information or control commands.

The first row for each column contains the train definition.

The first column for each row contains the location definition.

The cell at the intersection of the first row and first column must be empty.

This paragraph only lists the main outline, a fuller detailed description will follow in the next paragraphs.

### 11.3.2. Column definitions¶

A column is defined by the contents of the first row.

Default, the first row defines the train name.

Special columns can be defined using the following syntax :

• #comment: column contains comment only and is ignored when reading the timetable.
• <blank>: column is extension of preceding column.

### 11.3.3. Row definitions¶

A row is defined by the contents of the first column.

Default, the first column defines the stop location.

Special columns can be defined using the following syntax :

• #comment: row contains comment only and is ignored when reading the timetable
• <blank>: row is extension of row above
• #path: defines train path
• #consist: defines train consist
• #start: defines time when train is started
• #note: defines general notes and starting control commands for this train
• #dispose: defines how train is handled after it has terminated
• #speed, #speedmph, or #speedkph: defines train speed behavior in meters per second, miles per hour, or kilometers per hour, respectively; only one kind of speed row can be used in a single timetable file
• #restartdelay: defines randomized delays for a train
• #briefing: row contains briefing text for each train and is ignored when reading the timetable

### 11.3.4. Timing details¶

Each cell which is at an intersection of a train column and a location row, can contain timing details for that train at that location. Timing commands can be set at locations where the train stops, but can also be set for locations where no timing is inserted as the train passes through that location without stopping.

## 11.4. Timetable Data Details¶

### 11.4.1. Timetable Description¶

Although #comment rows and columns are generally ignored, the contents of the cell at the intersection of the first #comment row and first #comment column is used as the timetable description. This appears as the timetable’s name in the Open Rails menu and is used to reference trains from other timetables.

### 11.4.2. Train Details¶

The train name as defined in the first row must be unique for each train in a timetable file. This name is also used when referencing this train in a train command; see details below.

The sequence of trains is not important.

### 11.4.3. Location Details¶

At present, the possible locations are restricted to ‘platforms’ as defined in the MSTS Route Editor.

Each location must be set to the ‘Station Name’ as defined in the platform definitions.

The name used in the timetable must exactly match the name as used in the route definition (*.tdb file), otherwise the location cannot be found and therefore cannot be processed.

Also, each location name must be unique, as otherwise its position in the train path could be ambiguous.

The sequence of the locations is not important, as the order in which the stations are passed by a train is defined in that train’s path. For the same reason, a train’s path can be set to just run in between some of the locations, or be set to bypass certain stations.

### 11.4.4. Timing Details¶

Each cell at an intersection of train and location can contain the timing details of that train at that location.

Times are defined as HH:mm, and the 24-hour clock must be used.

If a single time is inserted it is taken as the departure time (except at the final location).

If both arrival and departure time are to be defined, these must be separated by ‘-‘.

Additional timing commands can be included. Such commands can also be set for locations where the train does not stop and therefore has no timing details, but the train must pass through that location for the commands to be effective.

Although a location itself can be defined more than once in a timetable, it is not possible to define timing details for trains for a location more than once. If a train follows a route which takes it through the same location more than once, the train must be ‘split’ into separate train entries.

### 11.4.5. Special Columns¶

• #comment column.

A column with the #comment definition in the first row is a comment column and is ignored when reading the timetable, except for the cell at the intersection of the first comment column and the first comment row.

• <Blank> column.

A column with a blank (empty) cell in the first row is taken as a continuation of the preceding column. It can be used to insert control commands which apply to the details in the preceding column. This can be useful when timings are derived automatically through formulas in the spreadsheet as inserting commands in the timing cell itself would exclude the use of such formulas.

### 11.4.6. Special Rows¶

• #comment row.

A row with the #comment definition in the first column is a comment row and is ignored when reading the timetable, except for the cell at the intersection of the first comment column and the first comment row.

• <Blank> row.

A row with a blank (empty) cell in the first column is taken as a continuation of the preceding row.

• #path row.

The #path row defines the path of that train. The path must be a *.pat file as defined by the MSTS Activity Editor or by Trackviewer, and must be located in the route’s Path directory. This field is compulsory.

The timetable uses the same paths as those defined for activities.

However, waiting points must not be defined in paths for use in timetables as the processing of waiting points is not supported in the timetable concept. Waiting points within a timetable must be defined using the specific control commands.

The #path statement can take a qualifier: /binary.

Large timetables can require many paths, and loading those paths can take considerable time (several minutes). To reduce this loading time, the paths can be stored in a processed, binary format. This format is the same as used in the ‘save’ command. Note that the binary path information cannot be directly accessed by the user, either for reading or for writing. When /binary is set, the program will check if a binary path exists. If so, it will read that path. If not, it will read the ‘normal’ path, and will then store this as binary for future use. Binary paths are stored in a subdirectory named OpenRails which must be created in the Paths directory of the route.

Note: If a path or the route is edited, then the binary data will be out of date. If so, it is deleted and re-created automatically when the user starts the route.

• #consist row

The #consist row defines the consist used for that train. This field is compulsory.

However, if the train is run as an AI train and it is ‘formed’ out of another train (see below), the consist information is ignored and the train uses the consist of the train out of which it was formed.

For the player train, the consist is always used even if the train is formed out of another train. The consist definition must be a *.con file as defined by the MSTS Activity Editor or by the TSRE5 consist editor, and must be stored in the defined consist directory.

Also a more complex syntax of the consist definition is possible, as described below.

This allows a consist definition to be not just a single string directly referring to a file, but a combination of strings, with the possibility to use (part of) the consist in reverse.

The general syntax is:

consist [$reverse] [+ consists [$reverse] [+ ...] ]


Example: a loco-hauled train, using the same set of coaches, running in both directions. Two consists are defined: c_loco and c_wagons. The consist definitions which can now be used are:

c_loco + c_wagons, and for reverse:

c_loco $reverse + c_wagons$reverse

Please note that $reverse always applies only to the sub-consist with which it is defined, not for the complete combined consist. If this train sometimes has some additional wagons, e.g. during rush hours, the consists can be defined as follows (with c_add the definition of the additional wagons): c_loco + c_wagons + c_add, and for reverse: c_loco$reverse + c_add $reverse + c_wagons$reverse

Clearly, this can save on the definition of the total required consists, and in particular saves the tedious task of having to define ‘reverse’ consists. When using multiple units, this is even more useful.

Suppose there are two sets of multiple units, running either as single trains or combined. Normally, six different consists would be required to cover all trains, but now only two will suffice : set_a and set_b. The various combinations are:

set_a, reverse set_a $reverse. set_b, reverse set_b$reverse.

set_a + set_b, reverse set_b $reverse + set_a$reverse.

Consist strings which contain ‘+’ or ‘$’ can be used in timetables but must be enclosed by < >. For instance : <loco+wagon>+<$loco+wagon>$reverse • #start row The #start row defines the time at which the train is started. It must be defined as HH:mm, and the 24 hour clock must be used. This field is compulsory. Use of start time for AI trains : • When a train is formed out of another train and this other train is included to run in the timetable, the time defined in #start is only used to define when the train becomes active. Use of start time for player train : • The time as defined in #start is normally used as the start time of the timetable ‘activity’. If a train is formed out of another train and this train is included in the timetable, then if this train is delayed and has not arrived before the defined start time, the starting of this train is also delayed until the train out of which it is formed has arrived. This applies to both AI and player train. This means that the start of the player activity can be delayed. The #start field also accepts a number of start commands. For details on starting and running of trains around midnight see the paragraph below. • #note row The #note row can be used to define note commands which are not location related but apply to the full run of the train. It can also be used to set commands for trains which do not stop at or pass through any defined location. This row is optional. • #dispose row The #dispose row defines what happens to an AI train when it has reached the end of its run, i.e. it has reached the end of the defined path. The information in the #dispose row can detail if the train is to be formed into another train, and, if so, how and where. For details see the dispose commands as described further down. This row is optional and if included, the use per train is also optional. If the row is not included or the field is not set for a particular train, the train is removed from the activity after it has terminated. The #dispose row presently does not affect the end of the run for the player train. • #speed row This optional field defines maximum speed for trains, which may restrict the train to lower speed as would otherwise be allowed. Note that any value defined here will never be applied if it exceeds the maximum speed as set through speedposts or signals, or as set in the consist file. If specified, only one #speed (m/s), #speedkph, or #speedmph row can be present in a single timetable file. This row also accepts a number of speed commands. • #restartdelay row Delays are applied when restarting a train from a stop, e.g. at a station or a signal. Default random delays are set for each train. The default values may optionally be overruled using delay commands in the #restartdelay field. The random delay is calculated as $$\mbox{fixed part} + Random(\mbox{variable part})$$, where all values are in seconds. • #briefing row The #briefing row is optional and contains text which describes the train operation for the user. This text appears in the Open Rails main window along with description of the route and the loco. The user can also see it in-game in the Briefing tab of the Help Window (F1). A similar entry in the #comment column provides text which describes the entire timetable. The timetable-or file does not allow the fields to contain line-breaks but if HTML breaks “<br>” are inserted into the #briefing field, these will be converted to line-breaks. ### 11.4.7. Control Commands¶ #### 11.4.7.1. General¶ Control commands can be set to control train and signaling behaviour and actions. #### 11.4.7.2. Command Syntax¶ All commands have the same basic syntax. A command consists of: • Syntax name : defines the control command. • Syntax value : set the value related to the command. Not all commands take a value. • Syntax qualifiers : adds additional information to the command. Not all commands have qualifiers. Some qualifiers may be optional but others may be compulsory, or compulsory only in combination with other qualifiers. • Syntax qualifier values : a qualifier may require a value Command syntax: $name = value /qualifier=value


Multiple values may be set, separated by ‘+’. Note that any qualifiers always apply to all values.

#### 11.4.7.3. Train Reference¶

Many commands require a reference to another train. This reference is the other train’s name as defined in the first row.

If the target train is in a separate timetable of the same timetable group, the reference is in the form of train name:timetable description, where the description is the text at the intersection of the first #comment row and #comment column in the other timetable file.

#### 11.4.7.4. Station Commands¶

Station commands apply to all stops for a given station row. They are inserted directly after the station name in the first column.

$hold,$nohold and $forcehold If $hold is set, it defines that the exit signal for that location must be held at danger up to 2 minutes before train departure.

An exit signal is allocated to a platform if this signal is beyond the end platform marker (in the direction of travel), but is still within the same track node - so there must not be any points etc. between the platform marker and the signal.

By default, the signal will not be held.

$forcehold will set the first signal beyond the platform as the ‘hold’ signal, even if this signal is not allocated to the platform as exit signal. This can be useful at locations with complex layout where signals are not directly at the platform ends, but not holding the signals could lead to delay to other trains. $forcewait

Force the train to wait if the next signal is at danger even if this signal is not recognized as the exit signal for that platform.

$nowaitsignal Normally, if a train is stopped at a station and the next signal ahead is still at danger, the train will not depart. But, there are situations where this should be overruled. Some stations are ‘free line’ stations - that is, they are not controlled by signals (usually small halts, without any switches). The next signal probably is a ‘normal’ block signal and may be some distance from the station. In that situation, the train does not have to wait for that signal to clear in order to depart. Other situation are for freight trains, light engines and empty stock, which also usually do not wait for the signal to clear but draw up to the signal so as to take as little as time as possible to exit the station. $terminal

The $terminal command changes the calculation of the stop position, and makes the train stop at the terminating end of the platform. Whether the platform is really a terminating platform, and at which end it terminates, is determined by a check of the train’s path. If the platform is in the first section of a train’s path, or there are no junctions in the path leading up to the section which holds the platform, it is assumed the train starts at a terminal platform and the end of the train is placed close to the start of the platform. If the platform is in the last section if the path or there are no junctions beyond the section which holds the platform, it is assumed the platform is at the end of the train’s path and the train will run up to near the end of the platform in its direction of travel. If neither condition is met, it is assumed it is not a terminal platform after all, and the normal stop position is calculated. The $terminal option can be set for a station, or for individual trains. If set for a station it cannot be overruled by a train.

However, because of the logic as described above, if set for a station which has both terminal platforms as well as through platforms, trains with paths continuing through those platforms will have the normal stop positions.

$closeupsignal Sets a reduced clearance on approach to signal to maximize use of available platform length. $extendplatformtosignal

Sometimes the platform marker is placed some distance from the actual end of the platform where the signal is located, e.g. in case of switches along the platform. Normally this would cause trains to stop far from the end of the platform and then block the switches to the rear. This parameter will place the ‘end of platform’ position not at the position of the platform marker but just ahead of the signal position.

$restrictplatformtosignal Sometimes the platform marker is placed beyond the exit signal for that platform. If the signal is at danger, the train will stop at the signal and if this is a long train, this stop will not be seen as the station stop as the train has not reached the required platform stop position. This parameter will place the ‘end of platform’ position not at the position of the platform marker but just ahead of the signal position. $stoptime

Syntax : $stoptime=n (n is time in seconds) Sets the required default stop time at this platform, overriding the stoptime definition set in the track database. $closeup

The train will stop close to another train already in the platform. Can only be used if the $callon timing command is also set for that train. $keepclear

Defines that the stop position must be such that the length of platform as indicated in the command must be kept clear ahead of or behind the train. This may be essential if another train is to be attached or if another train is to be taken into the same platform.

Parameters :

rear = <n> (n in meter)

The stop location must be such that he minimal distance behind the train is n meter. If the platform has an exit signal, the train will stop in front of the signal even if this means that less than n meter is clear, unless the /force parameter is set as well. In this situation, the path of the train must continue beyond the exit signal.

Note that the train will never proceed beyond the end of its path.

front = <n> (n in meter)

The stop location must be such that the minimal platform length available ahead of the train is not less than n meter. If the rear of the train would be outside the platform, the location is calculated such that the rear of the train is at the platform end even if this means that less than n meter is clear, except when the /force parameter is set as well.

force

Forces front or rear section to be kept clear even if train must pass exit signal (for rear parameter), or rear of train does not fit into platform (for front parameter).

$endstop When the path of the train continues beyond the station position (e.g. when setting $keepclear /rear /force), the stop is considered to be the end of the path even if the train has not reached the actual final position.

#### 11.4.7.5. Timing Commands¶

These commands can be set for each timing cell, i.e. at each intersection of train column and location row, or in the #note row. The commands will apply at and from the location onward (if applicable).

For instance, a $wait command can be set for a station without a stop. The actual wait location can be that station itself, but it could also be a loop or junction somewhere beyond that station. $wait

Syntax : $wait=<train> /maxdelay=n /notstarted /atstart /owndelay=n Defines that a train is to wait for the referenced train to allow this train to proceed first. The referenced train can be routed in the same or the opposite direction as this train itself. A search is done for the first track section which is common to both trains, starting at the location where the $wait is defined, or at the start of the path if defined in the #note row.

If the start location is already common for both trains, then first a search is done for the first section which is not common to both trains, and the wait is applied to the next first common section beyond that.

If the wait is set, the section will not be cleared for this train until the referenced train has passed this section. This will force the train to wait. The referenced train must exist for the wait to be valid.

However, if /notstarted is set, the wait will also be set even if the referenced train has not yet been started. This can be used where the wait position is very close to the start position of the referenced train, and there is a risk that the train may clear the section before the referenced train is started.

Care should be taken when defining a $wait at a location where the train is to reverse. As the search is performed for the active subpath only, a$wait defined at a location where the train is to reverse will not be effective as the common section will be in the next subpath after the reversal. In such a situation, the train should be ‘split’ into two separate definitions, one up to the reversal location and another starting at that location.

Command value : referenced train, this is compulsory.

Command qualifiers :

/maxdelay=n: n is the maximum delay (in minutes) of the referenced train for which the wait is still valid.

This delay is compensated for any delay of the train which is to wait, e.g. if maxdelay is 5 minutes, the referenced train has a delay of 8 minutes but this train itself has a delay of 4 minutes, the compensated delay is 4 minutes and so the wait is still valid.

This parameter is optional, if not set a maxdelay of 0 minutes is set as default.

/notstarted: the wait will also be applied if the referenced train has not yet started.

/atstart: the wait is activated at the present position rather than the first non-common position.

May be used where a train in opposite direction is to terminate in the same location as this train is started and there may not be any possible passing locations between this starting position and the present position of the other train.

/owndelay=n (n is delay in minutes); the owndelay qualifier command makes the command valid only if the train in question is delayed by at least the total minutes as set for the owndelay qualifier.

This can be used to hold a late-running train such that is does not cause additional delays to other trains, in particular on single track sections.

/trigger=HH:MM

Experimental option: Restricts this command to trigger only after the specified time.

/endtrigger=HH:MM

Experimental option: Restricts this command to trigger only before the specified time.

$follow Syntax : $follow=<train> /maxdelay=n /notstarted /owndelay=n

This command is very similar to the $wait command, but in this case it is applied to each common section of both trains beyond a part of the route which was not common. The train is controlled such that at each section where the paths of the trains re-join after a section which was not common, the train will only proceed if the referenced train has passed that position. The command therefore works as a$wait which is repeated for each such section.

The command can only be set for trains routed in the same direction. When a wait location is found and the train is due to be held, a special check is performed to ensure the rear of the train is not in the path of the referenced train or, if it is, the referenced train has already cleared that position. Otherwise, a deadlock would result, with the referenced train not being able to pass the train which is waiting for it.

Command value: referenced train, this is compulsory.

Command qualifiers:

/maxdelay=n: n is the maximum delay (in minutes) of the referenced train for which the wait is still valid. This delay is compensated by any delay of the train which is to wait, e.g. if maxdelay is 5 minutes, the referenced train has a delay of 8 minutes but this train itself has a delay of 4 minutes, the compensated delay is 4 minutes and thus the wait is still valid.

This parameter is optional, if not set a maxdelay of 0 minutes is set as default.

/notstarted: the follow will also be applied if the referenced train has not yet started.

/owndelay=n (n is delay in minutes): the owndelay qualifier command makes the command valid only if the train in question is delayed by at least the total minutes as set for the owndelay qualifier.

This can be used to hold a late-running train such that is does not cause additional delays to other trains, in particular on single track sections.

/trigger=HH:MM

Experimental option: Restricts this command to trigger only after the specified time.

/endtrigger=HH:MM

Experimental option: Restricts this command to trigger only before the specified time.

$connect Syntax : $connect=<train> /maxdelay=n /hold=h

Defines that a train is to wait at a station until another train has arrived, so as to let passengers make the connection between the trains.

The train will be timetabled to allow this connection, and the $connect command is set to maintain this connection if the arriving train is running late. Note that the $connect command will not lock the signal. If the paths of this train and the arriving train conflict before the arriving train reaches the station, additional $wait or $hold commands must be set to avoid deadlock.

Command value: reference to train which is to be waited for, this is compulsory.

Command qualifiers :

/maxdelay=n : n is the maximum delay (in minutes) of the arriving train for which this train is held.

If the delay of the arriving train exceeds this value the train will not wait. The maximum delay is independent from this train’s own delay.

This qualifier and its value are compulsory.

/hold=n : n is the time (in minutes) the train is still held after the other train has arrived, and relates to the time required by the passengers to make the connection.

This qualifier and its value are compulsory.

$waitany Syntax : $waitany=<path> /both /opposite

This command will set a wait for any train which is on the path section as defined.

If the qualifier /both is set, the wait will be applied for any train regardless of its direction, otherwise the wait is set only for trains heading in the same direction as the definition of the path.

The path defined in the waitany command must have a common section with the path of the train itself, otherwise no waiting position can be found.

This command can be set to control trains to wait beyond the normal signal or deadlock rules. For instance, it can be used to perform a check for a train which is to leave a siding or yard, checking the line the train is to join for any trains approaching on that line, for a distance further back than signalling would normally clear, so as to ensure it does not get into the path of any train approaching on that line.

With the /both qualifier set, it can be used at the terminating end of single track lines to ensure a train does not enter that section beyond the last passing loop if there is another train already in that section as this could lead to irrecoverable deadlocks.

With the /opposite qualifier set, the command searches only for trains in the opposite direction of the defined path.

$callon This will allow a train to ‘call on’ into a platform occupied by another train. For full details, see the discussion above on the relationship between signalling and timetable. $hold, $nohold and$forcehold

These commands are functionally identical to (and take precedence over) their respective station commands, but apply only to the current train.

$forcewait Identical to the station command, but applies only to the current train. $nowaitsignal

Identical to the station command, but applies only to the current train.

$waitsignal Can be used to override and negate a $nowaitsignal station command for the current train.

$noclaim Experimental option: The $noclaim command inhibits the train from claiming track circuit sections if the train is held at a signal. A train with the $noclaim command would always be last in the queue at busy junctions, always giving priority to any other train. $detach

Syntax : $detach <detach parameters> <forms parameters> Set details for train to detach a portion of that train. Parameters to define the portion to be detached : /power Will detach the power unit. The system will check for power unit at front or rear, if both are found, front will prevail. If there is no power unit at either end, nothing is detached. /leadingpower Will detach the front power unit only. If there is no power unit at the front, nothing is detached. /allleadingpower Will detach all power units at the front of the train. If there are no power units at the front, nothing is detached. /trailingpower Will detach the power unit which is the rearmost unit on the train. If the rear unit is not a power unit, nothing is detached. /alltrailingpower Will detach all power units from the rear of the train. If there are no power units at the rear of the train, nothing is detached. /nonpower All units which are not power units will be detached from the train. The system will determine at which end of the train power units are located, and will then detach all non power units from the other end of the train. If neither end has power units, units will be detached from the rear. If both ends are power units, nothing is detached. /units=n (n may be <0 or >0 but n=0 is not allowed) Number of units to be detached. If n>0, the units will be detached at the front of the train. If n<0, the units will be detached at the rear of the train. If n exceeds the actual length of the train, n is reduced such that one unit remains on the train. /consist=<consist>[+<consist>[+...]] Name of consist(s) to be detached. For use of consist names in detach command, see note on consist names below. The consist to be detached must be at either end of the train, i.e. it must be the front portion or the rear portion of the train. If a list of consists is defined, it must be in the sequence of the consists to be detached, from the outside looking inward, i.e. if the units are to be detached at the front, the first consist in the list must be the front portion, but if the units are to be detached at the rear the first consist in the list must be the rear portion. If neither front nor rear portion matches the consist or first consist as defined, nothing is detached. Parameters for formed train : /forms=<train> Detached portion will form train as indicated. /static Detached portion will form a static consist. $attach

Syntax : $attach=<train> This train will attach to train as indicated, and will therefore cease to exist. If used at station stop, there is no use to define anything beyond this stop, and nothing can be defined in the #dispose field either. If the other train to which this train must attach is not at the location where the attach is to take place, this train will terminate without the attach taking place. It is therefore advisable to use a $wait command to ensure the other train is in the location as required.

If the /firstin or /setback parameter is set, it should be the other way round, in that case a $wait command should be set for the other train to ensure this train is indeed first in. Parameters (only valid at station stop) : /firstin This train is in first, and will wait for arrival of the second train to perform the attach. The other train may come in ahead of this train through a switch or from the opposite direction. /setback This train is in first, and will wait for the other train to come in behind. When the other train has arrived, this train will set back to perform the attach. This should not be used if an engine is to be detached from the other train as this train will not wait for the engine to clear before performing the attach. $pickup

Syntax : $pickup=<train> /static This train will pick up the train as defined in the command, or will pick up the static consist which is on the location where the pickup is defined. The train which is picked up will cease to exist. The full train is picked up, no changes are made to the consists of either trains (except if combined with$triggers command in #dispose field).

If there is no train to pick up at the required location, the train will continue as defined.

$transfer Syntax : $transfer=<train> /static <transfer parameters>

This train (the “active” train) will transfer units with the train as indicated, or with a static consist placed at the location where the transfer is defined (the “passive” train).

With a transfer, units will be transferred from one train to another, but both trains will continue to exist. At least one power unit must remain on the “active” train, this power unit must not be part of the portion to be transferred. The “passive” train need not have power units, or all power units may be detached as part of the transfer.

Parameters defining the type of transfer :

/give

This train is to give the defined units to the other train, that is units as defined for the “active” train will be moved to the “passive” train.

/take

This train is to take the defined units from the other train, that is units as defined for the “passive” train will be moved to the “active” train.

/keep

All units except the units as defined for the “active” train will be transferred to the “passive” train.

/leave

All units except the units as defined for the “passive” train will be transferred to the “active” train.

Parameters defining the units to transfer or to keep on the train :

/onepower : One power unit only.

/allpower : All power units.

/nonpower : All units which are not power units.

/units=<n>

If the portion is defined for the “active” train, and <n> exceeds the length of that train, the number is reduced such that one unit will remain on the train.

/consist=<consist>[+consist[+...]]

Consists names of portions to keep or to transfer. The consist names must be in sequence, and the first (or only) consist name must match the portion at the applicable end of the train.

$activate Syntax : $activate=<train>

Will activate the train as indicated, either when the train starts, when the train is at the indicated stop or when it is terminated.

#### 11.4.7.6. Start Commands¶

$create Syntax : $create[=<time>] [/ahead=<train>]

The $create command will create that train at the time as indicated. If no time is set, the train will be created before the start of the first train. The train will be ‘static’ until the time as set as start time. The normal rules for train placement still apply, so a train cannot be placed onto a section of track already occupied by another train. However, storage sidings often hold multiple trains. To allow for this, and to ensure the trains are stored in proper order (first one out up front), the parameter [/ahead=<train>] must be used. The train will now be placed ahead of the referenced train, in the direction of the train’s path. Multiple trains can be stored on a single siding, but care must be taken to set the proper references. The reference must always be to the previous train - two trains cannot reference the same train in the /ahead parameter as that would cause conflict. If the total length of all trains exceeds the length of the sidings, the trains will ‘spill out’ onto whatever lies beyond. Note that a train referenced in an /ahead parameter must be created before or at the same time as the train which uses that reference. $pool

Syntax : $pool=<poolname> [/direction=forward|backward] Train originates from the defined pool. For trains starting from a pool, the path must start at or near the end of one of the access paths as defined for that pool. If the path starts earlier than the last track section defined for the access path, it must not deviate from that path. For turntable pools, the direction in which the train exits from the turntable can be set using the direction qualifier. If not set, the train will reverse. $next

Start time is after 00:00 at the end of the timetable. May be used to start train running after midnight.

$static Syntax : $static [/pool=<pool>] [/ahead=<train>]

This train will spawn as a static train.

/pool=<pool>

Train is created in referenced pool. For a pool to have trains, these must be defined using this command.

The path must be a storage path as defined for that pool. Note that the train may be placed on one of the other storage paths as defined for that pool, this is defined through the pool logic.

If more trains are created in a pool than the pool can hold, a warning is issued.

/ahead=<train>

As above for the $create command. $activated

The train is activated through the $activate command from another train. The $activate command may be sent before or after the defined start time of this train.

A train can be activated by only one other train.

#### 11.4.7.7. Note Commands¶

The note row defines commands applicable to when the train is started. In addition to the exclusive #note commands listed below, this row also accepts all timing commands.

The program uses average acceleration and deceleration values for all trains (different values for freight, passenger and high speed trains). But these values are not always adequate, especially for modern trains. This can lead to delays when trying to run to a real life timetable.

Using the $acc and $dec commands, the values used can be modified. Note that these commands do not define an actual value, but define a factor; the default value will be multiplied by this factor. However, setting a higher value for acceleration and deceleration does not mean that the trains will always accelerate and decelerate faster according to the set value. Most of the time, the train behaviour is controlled through the physics. But especially the $dec factor does have an important side effect. The deceleration value is also used to calculate the expected required braking distance. Setting a higher deceleration will reduce the required braking distance, allowing the train to continue to run at maximum allowed speed for longer distances. This can have a significant effect on the timing. Take care, though, not to set the value too high - the calculated braking distance must of course be sufficient to allow for proper braking, otherwise the train cannot stop in time resulting in SPADs etc. A typical value for modern stock for the $dec command is 2 or 3.

$acc Syntax : $acc=<value>

Sets the required acceleration for this train. <value> is a multiplier for the default acceleration.

$dec Syntax : $dec=<value>

Sets the required deceleration for this train. <value> is a multiplier for the default deceleration.

$doo Defines the train as “Driver Only Operated”. If set, there will be no departure sound (whistle, bell or whatever) on departure from a station. $forcereversal

Normally, when a reversal is made and there is a signal in the train’s path as leading from the reversal point, the actual reversal position is placed such that the train will be fully passed that signal before reversing, and the reverse move is therefor controlled by that signal.

Setting $forcereversal will allow the train to reverse as soon at it is clear of the reverse position. This is useful when shunting in yards when there is no need to fully exit the yard to reverse and the entry signal. #### 11.4.7.8. Speed Commands¶ $max

Syntax : $max=<value> Overall maximum speed for this train. $cruise

Syntax : $cruise=<value> Maximum speed at which train will normally operate when it is running on time. When the actual delay exceeds the defined maximum delay (as set in $maxdelay), the train will accelerate to maximum speed.

$maxdelay Syntax : $maxdelay=<m>

Maximum delay (in minutes) for cruise control. When this delay is exceeded, the train will accelerate to maximum speed.

$creep Syntax : $creep=<value>

Creep speed is the minimum speed on the final approach to a signal at danger or station stop location.

$attach Syntax : $attach=<value>

Speed at which the train will attach to another train.

$detach Syntax : $detach=<value>

Speed at which the train will detach from another train.

$movingtable Syntax : $movingtable=<value>

Speed at which the train will navigate turntables.

#### 11.4.7.9. Delay Commands¶

All delay commands, except for the $reverse command, are in the form of $command [/fix=<f>] [/var=<v>], where <f> represents the fixed component of the time delay and <v> represents the variable component of the time delay, both in seconds.

$new Set the train’s delay after spawning into the simulator. The fixed delay defaults to 0 seconds, while the variable delay defaults to 10 seconds. $path

Set the train’s delay after stopping for an obstacle along its path, such as a stop signal or a reversed switch.

The fixed delay defaults to 1 second, while the variable delay defaults to 10 seconds.

$station Set the train’s delay after making a station stop. The fixed delay defaults to 0 seconds, while the variable delay defaults to 15 seconds. $follow

Set the train’s delay when following another train.

The fixed delay defaults to 15 seconds, while the variable delay defaults to 10 seconds.

$attach Set the train’s delay after attaching to another train. The fixed delay defaults to 30 seconds, while the variable delay defaults to 30 seconds. $detach

Set the train’s delay after detaching one of its portions.

The fixed delay defaults to 5 seconds, while the variable delay defaults to 20 seconds.

$movingtable Set the train’s delay after using a turntable. The fixed delay defaults to 1 second, while the variable delay defaults to 10 seconds. $reverse

Syntax : $reverse /additional=<value> When reversing, an additional delay is added to reflect the time required for the driver to walk through or along the train to the other end. This delay defaults to 0.5 seconds per meter of train, a value that can be overridden with this command. For trains which are pushed on reversal, e.g. for shunt moves of freight trains, it is advisable to set the reversing delay to 0. #### 11.4.7.10. Dispose Commands¶ Dispose commands can be set in the #dispose row to define what is to be done with the train after it has terminated. See special notes below on the behaviour of the player train when it is formed out of another train by a dispose command, or when the player train itself has a dispose command. $forms

Syntax : $forms=<train> <qualifiers> $forms defines which new train is to be formed out of this train when the train terminates. The consist of the new train is formed out of the consist of the terminating train and any consist definition for the new train is ignored. The new train will be ‘static’ until the time as defined in #start row for that train. This means that the new train will not try to clear its path, signals etc., and will not move even if it is not in a station.

If the incoming train is running late, and its arrival time is later as the start time of the new train, the start of the new train is also delayed but the new train will immediately become active as soon as it is formed.

For locomotive-hauled trains, it can be defined that the engine(s) must run round the train in order for the train to move in the opposite direction. The runround qualifier needs a path which defines the path the engine(s) is to take when performing the runround. If the train has more than one leading engine, all engines will be run round. Any other power units within the train will not be moved.

For specific rules and conditions for runround to work, see discussion on the relationship between signalling and the timetable concept.

If runround is defined, the time at which the runround is to take place can be defined. If this time is not set, the runround will take place immediately on termination of the incoming train.

Command value : referenced train, this is compulsory.

Command qualifiers:

/runround=<path>: <path> is the path to be used by the engine to perform the runround.

This qualifier is optional; if set, the value is compulsory.

For finer control over the runround maneuver, it is suggested to use the $detach and $attach commands instead.

/rrtime=time: time is the definition of the time at which the runround is to take place. The time must be defined in HH:mm and must use the 24 hour clock.

This qualifier is only valid in combination with the /runround qualifier, is optional but if set, the value is compulsory.

/setstop: if this train itself has no station stops defined but the train it is to form starts at a station, this command will copy the details of the first station stop of the formed train, to ensure this train will stop at the correct location.

For this qualifier to work correctly, the path of the incoming train must terminate in the platform area of the departing train.

This qualifier is optional and takes no values.

/atstation: The final position of the train is calculated as if the train is stopping at the station where the new train starts, even if no station stop is defined for this train.

/closeup: Final position of train will be close up to end of track or other train.

/speed=<v>: This qualifier can only be used with the $runround parameter. It defines the maximum speed for the runround move in m/s. $triggers

Syntax : $triggers=<train> <qualifiers> $triggers also defines which new train is to be formed out of this train when the train terminates.

However, when this command is used, the new train will be formed using the consist definition of the new train and the existing consist is removed.

Command value : referenced train, this is compulsory.

Command qualifiers:

/runround=<path>: <path> is the path to be used by the engine to perform the runround.

This qualifier is optional; if set, the value is compulsory.

/rrtime=time: time is the definition of the time at which the runround is to take place. The time must be defined in HH:mm and must use the 24 hour clock.

This qualifier is only valid in combination with the /runround qualifier, is optional but if set, the value is compulsory.

/setstop: if this train itself has no station stops defined but the train it is to form starts at a station, this command will copy the details of the first station stop of the formed train, to ensure this train will stop at the correct location.

For this qualifier to work correctly, the path of the incoming train must terminate in the platform area of the departing train.

This qualifier is optional and takes no values.

/atstation: The final position of the train is calculated as if the train is stopping at the station where the new train starts, even if no station stop is defined for this train.

/closeup: Final position of train will be close up to end of track or other train.

/speed=<v>: This qualifier can only be used with the $runround parameter. It defines the maximum speed for the runround move in m/s. $static

Syntax : $static /closeup The train will become a ‘static’ train after it has terminated. Command value : none. Command qualifiers: /closeup: Final position of train will be close up to end of track or other train. $stable

Syntax:
$stable /out_path=<path> /out_time=time /in_path=<path> /in_time=time /static /runround=<path> /rrtime= time /rrpos=<runround position> /forms=<train> /triggers=<train> /speed=<v> /name=<name> $stable is an extended form of either $forms,$triggers or $static, where the train is moved to another location before the related command is performed. In case of /forms or /triggers, the train can move back to the same or to another location where the new train actually starts. Note that in these cases, the train has to make two moves, outward and inward. A runround can be performed in case /forms is defined. If /triggers is defined, the change of consist will take place at the ‘stable’ position. Any reversal(s) in the inward path, or at the final inward position, are taken into account when the new train is build, such that the consist is facing the correct direction when the new train is formed at the final inward position. The $stable can be used where a train forms another train but when the train must clear the platform before the new train can be formed to allow other trains to use that platform. It can also be used to move a train to a siding after completing its last duty, and be ‘stabled’ there as static train.

Separate timings can be defined for each move; if such a time is not defined, the move will take place immediately when the previous move is completed.

If timings are defined, the train will be ‘static’ after completion of the previous move until that required time.

If the formed train has a valid station stop and the return path of the stable command (in_path) terminates in the area of the platform of the first station stop of the formed train, the ‘setstop’ check (see setstop qualifier in $forms command) will automatically be added Command value : none. Command qualifiers : /out_path=<path>: <path> is the path to be used by the train to move out to the ‘stable’ position. The start of the path must match the end of the path of the incoming train. /out_time = time: time definition when the outward run must be started. Time is defined as HH:mm and must use the 24 hour clock. /in_path=<path>: <path> is the path to be used by the train for the inward run from the ‘stable’ position to the start of the new train. The start of the path must match the end of the out_path, the end of the path must match the start of the path for the new train. /in_time = time: time definition when the inward run must be started. Time is defined as HH:mm and must use the 24 hour clock. /closeup: Final position of train will be close up to end of track or other train. /callon: This train is allowed to proceed into the platform even if that platform is occupied. This option requires the TrainHasCallOn or TrainHasCallOn_Restricted function to be implemented for the signal which protects the platform. /runround=<path>: <path> is the path to be used by the engine to perform the runround. For details, see the$forms command definition of the time at which the runround is to take place. The time must be defined in HH:mm and must use the 24 hour clock.

/rrtime=time: time is the definition of the time at which the runaround is to take place. The time must be defined in HH:mm and must use the 24 hour clock.

/rrpos = <runround position>: the position within the ‘stable’ move at which the runround is to take place.

Possible values:

• out: the runround will take place before the outward move is started.
• stable: the runround will take place at the ‘stable’ position.
• in: the runround will take place after completion of the inward move.

/speed=<v>: This qualifier can only be used with the $runround parameter. It defines the maximum speed for the runround move in m/s. /name=<name>: This qualifier can only be used with the $runround parameter. It defines the name the train will carry during the stable move. This is the name shown in F7 info, in the dispatcher hud info and in the dispatcher window.

/static: train will become a ‘static’ train after completing the outward move.

/forms=<train>: train will form the new train after completion of the inward move. See the $forms command for details. /triggers=<train>: train will trigger the new train after completion of the inward move. The train will change to the consist of the new train at the ‘stable’ position. See the$triggers command for details.

Use of command qualifiers :

In combination with /static:

• /out_path: compulsory
• /out_time: optional

In combination with /forms:

• /out_path: compulsory
• /out_time: optional
• /in_path: compulsory
• /in_time: optional
• /runround: optional
• /rrtime: optional, only valid if /runround is set
• /rrpos: compulsory if /runround is set, otherwise not valid

In combination with /triggers :

• /out_path: compulsory
• /out_time: optional
• /in_path: compulsory
• /in_time: optional

$pool Syntax : $pool=<poolname> [/direction=forward|backward]

Train enters the defined pool when it terminates.

For turntable pools, the direction in which the train enters from the turntable can be set using the direction qualifier. If not set, the train will reverse.

$attach Equivalent to the timing command of the same name. $detach

Equivalent to the timing command of the same name.

$pickup Equivalent to the timing command of the same name. $transfer

Equivalent to the timing command of the same name.

$activate Equivalent to the timing command of the same name. ## 11.5. Additional Notes on Timetables¶ ### 11.5.1. Static Trains¶ A static train can be defined by setting $static in the top row (e.g. as the ‘name’ of that train). Consist and path are still required - the path is used to determine where the consist is placed (rear end of train at start of path). No start-time is required. The train will be created from the start of the timetable - but it cannot be used for anything within a timetable. It cannot be referenced in any command etc., as it has no name. At present, it is also not possible to couple to a static train - see below for details.

Note that there are some differences between timetable and activity mode in the way that static trains are generated. In activity mode, the train is an instance of the Train class, with type STATIC.

In timetable mode, the train is an instance of the TTTrain class (as are all trains in timetable mode), with type AI, movement AI_STATIC. This difference may lead to different behaviour with respect to sound, smoke and lights.

### 11.5.2. Processing of #dispose Command For Player Train¶

When the player train terminates and a #dispose command is set for that train to form another train (either $form,$trigger or $stable), the train will indeed form the next train as detailed, and that next train will now be the new player train. So the player can continue with that train, for instance on a return journey. On forming the new train, the train will become ‘Inactive’. This is a new state, in which the train is not authorized to move. Note that the F4 Track Monitor information is not updated when the train is ‘Inactive’. The Next Station display in the F10 Activity Monitor will show details on when the train is due to start. The train will become ‘active’ at the start-time as defined for the formed train. For information, the Activity Monitor window shows the name of the train which the player is running. ### 11.5.3. Termination of a Timetable Run¶ On reaching the end of a timetable run, the program will not be terminated automatically but has to be terminated by the player. ### 11.5.4. Calculation of Running Delay¶ An approximate value of the delay is continuously updated. This approximation is derived from the booked arrival time at the next station. If the present time is later as the booked arrival, and that difference exceeds the present delay, the delay is set to that difference. The time required to reach that station is not taken into account. This approximation will result in better regulation where /maxdelay or /owndelay parameters are used. ### 11.5.5. No Automatic Coupling¶ There is logic within the program which for any stopped train checks if it is close enough to another train to couple to this train. It is this logic which allows the player train to couple to any static train. However, this logic contains some actions which do not match the processing of timetable trains. Therefore, coupling of trains is not possible in timetable mode except for maneuvers specified explicitly with commands, such as $attach and $detach. ### 11.5.6. Use of Consists in Shunting Commands¶ Any wagon on the simulation must have been placed somewhere as a ‘new’ train. When a ‘new’ train is placed, it is formed as defined in the consist definition for that train. Each wagon will remember this ‘original consist’ throughout its entire life on the simulation. This ‘original consist’ name can be used in any$detach or $transfer command, even if the portion involved has changed trains. So, for instance, if a freight train is placed which consists of multiple portions, each with their own consist name (using the multiple consist definition), each wagon in that train will always remember its original consist. When this train is taken apart, portions are taken into other trains etc., the original consist name can still be used. When using this facility it is important to keep track of where and in which train the various portions are moved. As a list of consists must be defined in the correct sequence, it is also important to keep track of the configuration of the formed trains. The advantage of this method is that one does not need to keep count of the number of units in each train and each portion. Note that the consist information can not be used if the unit is started at a pool, if that pool can hold different consists. In that situation, it is not defined which consist will form the actual train. ### 11.5.7. Signalling Requirements and Timetable Concept¶ #### 11.5.7.1. General¶ The timetable concept is more demanding of the performance of the signalling system than ‘normal’ activities. The main reason for this is that the timetable will often have AI trains running in both directions, including trains running ahead of the player train in the same direction as the player train. There are very few activities with such situations as no effort would of course be made to define trains in an activity which would never be seen, but also because MSTS could not always properly handle such a situation. Any flaws in signalling, e.g. signals clearing the path of a train too far ahead, will immediately have an effect on the running of a timetable. If signals clear too far ahead on a single track line, for instance, it means trains will clear through passing loops too early, which leads to very long waits for trains in the opposite direction. This, in turn, can lead to lock-ups as multiple trains start to converge on a single set of passing loops. Similar situations can occur at large, busy stations - if trains clear their path through such a station too early, it will lead to other trains being kept waiting to enter or exit the station. If $forms or $triggers commands are used to link reversing trains, the problem is exacerbated as any delays for the incoming train will work through on the return working. #### 11.5.7.2. Call On Signal Aspect¶ Signalling systems may allow a train to ‘call on’, i.e. allow a train onto a section of track already occupied by another train (also known as permissive working). The difference between ‘call on’ and ‘permissive signals’ (STOP and PROCEED aspects) is that the latter is also allowed if the train in the section is moving (in the same direction), but ‘call on’ generally is only allowed if the train in the section is at a standstill. When a signal allows ‘call on’, AI trains will always pass this signal and run up to a pre-defined distance behind the train in the section. In station areas, this can lead to real chaos as trains may run into platforms occupied by other trains such that the total length of both trains far exceeds the platform length, so the second train will block the ‘station throat’ stopping all other trains. This can easily lead to a complete lock-up of all traffic in and around the station. To prevent this, calling on should be blocked in station areas even if the signalling would allow it. To allow a train to ‘call on’ when this is required in the timetable, the $callon command must be set which overrules the overall block. This applies to both AI and player train

In case the train is to attach to another train in the platform, calling on is automatically set.

Because of the inability of AI trains in MSTS to stop properly behind another train if ‘called on’ onto an occupied track, most signalling systems do not support ‘call on’ aspects but instead rely on the use of ‘permission requests’. AI trains cannot issue such a request, therefore in such systems $callon will not work. In this situation, attach commands can also not work in station areas. Note that the ‘runround’ command also requires ‘call on’ ability for the final move of the engine back to the train to attach to it. Therefore, when performed in station areas, also the runround can only work if the signalling supports ‘call on’. Special signalling functions are available to adapt signals to function as described above, which can be used in the scripts for relevant signals in the sigscr file. The function “TRAINHASCALLON()” will return ‘true’ if the section beyond the signal up to the next signal includes a platform where the train is booked to stop, and the train has the ‘callon’ flag set. This function will also return ‘true’ if there is no platform in the section beyond the signal. The function “TRAINHASCALLON_RESTRICTED” returns ‘true’ in similar conditions, except that it always returns ‘false’ if there is no platform in the section beyond the signal. Both functions must be used in combination with BLOCK_STATE = BLOCK_OCCUPIED. #### 11.5.7.3. Wait Commands and Passing Paths¶ From the location where the ‘wait’ or ‘follow’ is defined, a search is made for the first common section for both trains, following on from a section where the paths are not common. However, on single track routes with passing loops where ‘passing paths’ are defined for both trains, the main path of the trains will run over the same tracks in the passing loops and therefore no not-common sections will be found. As a result, the waiting point cannot find a location for the train to wait and therefore the procedure will not work. If waiting points are used on single track lines, the trains must have their paths running over different tracks through the passing loop in order for the waiting points to work properly. It is a matter of choice by the timetable creator to either pre-set passing locations using the wait commands, or let the system work out the passing locations using the passing paths. #### 11.5.7.4. Wait Commands and Permissive Signals¶ The ‘wait’ and ‘follow’ commands are processed through the ‘blockstate’ of the signal control. If at the location where the train is to wait permissive signals are used, and these signals allow a ‘proceed’ aspect on blockstate JN_OBSTRUCTED, the ‘wait’ or ‘follow’ command will not work as the train will not be stopped. #### 11.5.7.5. Running Trains Around Midnight¶ A timetable can be defined for a full 24 hour day, and so would include trains running around midnight. The following rules apply for the player train: • Train booked to start before midnight will be started at the end of the day, but will continue to run if terminating after midnight. • Trains formed out of other trains starting before midnight will NOT be started if the incoming train is delayed and as a result the start time is moved after midnight. In this situation, the activity is aborted. • Trains booked to start after midnight will instead be started at the beginning of the day, unless the $next command is used.

The following rules apply for AI trains:

• Trains booked to start before midnight will be started at the end of the day, but will continue to run if terminating after midnight.
• Trains formed out of other trains starting before midnight will still be started if the incoming train is delayed and as a result the start time is moved after midnight.
• Trains booked to start after midnight will instead be started at the beginning of the day, unless the $next command is used. #### 11.5.7.6. Viewing the Other Active Trains in the Timetable¶ To change the train that is shown in the external views, click <Alt+F9> to display the Train List and select the desired train from the list of active trains, or click <Alt+9> as described in Changing the View to cycle through the active trains. ### 11.5.8. Known Problems¶ • If a #dispose command is processed for the player train , and the new train runs in the opposite direction, the reverser will ‘jump’ to the reverse state on forming that new train. • A run-round command defined in a #dispose command cannot yet be processed. It will be necessary to switch to Manual to perform that run-round. • If two trains are to be placed on a single siding using$create with /ahead qualifier, but the trains have paths in opposite directions, the trains may be placed in incorrect positions.
• If the /binary qualifier is set for #path, but the OpenRails subdirectory in the Paths directory does not exist, the program will not be able to load any paths.

## 11.6. Storing Trains with Pools¶

Pools can be used to store trains before or in between active duties, or when all duties have been performed. Trains can be defined to be placed in a pool at the start of the timetable. When required, the train can be extracted from the pool. When the duty has terminated, the train can be returned to the pool. There is no need to define the exact storage of the train, nor is there need to sort out the various duties so as to avoid trains being locked in by other trains which are only required at a later time. When using pools, the system will take care of actual storage location and will select the first available train when a train is required.

A pool will consist of one or more tracks which are used to stable the trains. Access tracks must also be defined. (For details, see below.) A special type of pool is the turntable pool. In a turntable pool, all storage tracks are connected to a turntable. The access paths are also connected to the turntable. When extracting or storing a train, the train will run unto the turntable and the turntable, with the train on it, will be turned to the required position.

Pools can be used for both AI and player trains. When a train which is extracted from a pool is selected as the player train, the first available train will be selected and set as player train. When a train which is the player train is send to a pool, the train will terminate in the pool. The player can remain with the train until its next duty, but there is no way to tell what or when that duty will be, as that depends on other actions set up for that pool.

A pool can only contain trains which are equivalent in usage. The trains need not all be same type, but their use must be exchangeable. It is not possible to select a specific type of train from a pool.

Attach, detach or transfer is not possible for trains stored in a pool. Only fixed formations (single or multiple engines, or MU’s) can be extracted from or send to a pool. If multiple units are required, these must be extracted separately and coupled together after exiting from the pool. If multiple units are to be sent to a pool these must be detached before send to the pool. As attach, detach or transfers are not possible, pools can only be used by engines and MU’s, i.e. for units which can move on their own. Pools can not be used for coaches and wagons or trains without power.

Pool “overflow” can occur when a train is send to a pool but the storage area is full to capacity. In this situation, the train will terminate at the access point to the pool, and will be removed.

Pool “underflow” can occur when a train is requested from a pool but the storage area is empty and no units are available. In this situation, if the flag “force creation” is set for this pool, the train will be created and will start at the access point. If this flag is not set, the train is cancelled. A warning is issued to the logfile in case of pool underflow.

## 11.7. Pool Definition¶

Pools are defined in a file similar to a timetable file, i.e. a csv spreadsheet saved as a unicode text file. The files must be stored in the same directory as the timetable files (<route>\Activities\OpenRails).

The layout of a pool file is considerably different compared to that of a timetable file. All parameters are located in the first column, and only one value may be defined per row. The very first row is ignored.

The file extension for normal pools is .pool-or; for turntable pools it is .turntable-or.

A file can repeat parameters to define multiple pools, which need not be related in any way.

Note that there are some key differences between non-turntable pools and turntable pools:

• For non-turntable pools, each storage path must have at least one access path; for turntable pools, access paths are independent of the storage paths.
• For non-turntable pools, storage paths are defined in the outbound direction; for turntable pools, storage paths are defined as leading away from the turntable, i.e. in the inbound direction.

### 11.7.1. Non-Turntable Pools¶

Parameters for non-turntable pools:

#comment

Comment only, value is ignored.

#name

Name of the pool. This is the name which must be used in the timetable $pool commands for creating, extracting or storing trains for this pool. This field is compulsory, and must precede all other parameters. #storage A path that defines a storage track. At least one storage track must be defined for a pool. The path must be defined in the outbound direction, that is, the direction of the train when it leaves the pool. A storage path can only be a single section; it cannot pass over switches or crossings. #access A path that defines access to a storage track. Each storage track definition must be followed by one or more access path definitions. The path must be defined in the outbound direction, that is, the direction of the train when it leaves the pool. An access path can pass over switches or crossings but can not contain any reversal points. #maxunits For each storage track, the maximum number of units which can be stored on that track can be defined. This field is optional. Note that this defines only the maximum number of units. The effective number may be less if the length of the storage track is not sufficient to hold this number of units. #settings Contains special flags for pool usage. Currently, only one value is allowed: force creation, which forces trains to spawn on the access point if the pool is underflowing. #### 11.7.1.1. Additional Notes¶ It is not possible to define “run-through” storage areas. Access paths to storage tracks can only be defined at one end of the storage track, and trains will always enter and exit the pool at the same end. Although each storage path has its own access path(s), it is advisable that all access paths end at the same point, such that all storage tracks are accessible from that location. It is possible to have multiple access points but then it is still advisable that all storage paths can be reached from all points. If only part of the storage paths can be accessed from an access point, there is a risk that the trains can not be spread adequately over the full storage area. Worst case, if all trains are always send to one access point and always extracted from another access point and these points do not access all storage tracks, there may be a continuous series of pool “overflow” and “underflow” as the engines send to the pool can not be extracted. ### 11.7.2. Turntable Pools¶ Parameters for turntable pools: #comment Comment only, value is ignored. #name Name of the pool. This is the name which must be used in the timetable $pool commands for creating, extracting or storing trains for this pool. This field is compulsory, and must precede all other parameters.

#worldfile

The filename of the world file in which the turntable is located.

#uid

The uid of the turntable in the worldfile. Together with #worldfile, this defines the turntable on which the pool is based.

The #worldfile and #uid values must be the same as the related values in the turntable.dat file which defines the working timetables.

#storage

A path that defines a storage track. This path must be defined in the direction leading away from the turntable. At least one storage track must be defined.

The start position of the path must be outside the turntable area. A storage path can only be a single section; it cannot pass over switches or crossings.

#access

A path that defines access to a storage track. This path must be defined in the direction leading away from the turntable. At least one access path must be defined. The access path is not linked to a specific storage track but applies to all storage tracks as these are always accessed via the turntable.

The start position of the path must be outside the turntable area. The path can pass over switches or crossings but can not contain any reversal points.

#maxunits

For each storage track, the maximum number of units which can be stored on that track can be defined. This field is optional.

Note that this defines only the maximum number of units. The effective number may be less if the length of the storage track is not sufficient to hold this number of units.

#speedmph and #speedkph

These parameters define the maximum speed of train when accessing the turntable, in mph or kph. This speed will also apply to the storage tracks.

On exiting on the turntable on access paths, the train will automatically revert to the maximum speed which applied on the approach to the turntable.

With these commands, there is no need to place speedposts in the route to limit the speed on the turntable.

#framerate

This parameter defines the frame rate for turning the turntable. See Turntables and Frame Rate for details.

#approachclearance

This parameter sets the distance, in meters, at which the engine will stop in front of the turntable when it approaches the turntable but has to wait for turntable to align. It is also the distance at which the restricted turntable speed is applied.

#releaseclearance

This parameter sets the distance, in meters, at which the turntable will be released after the engine has moved off of the turntable. This is also the distance at which the turntable speed restriction will be lifted if the engine is leaving the pool.

#settings

Equivalent to the non-turntable pool command of the same name.

#### 11.7.2.1. Using the Turntable¶

Do not at any time move the turntable using manual controls.

When the player train is extracted from the pool, the turntable will turn to the required position. The player train can either wait or move slowly toward the turntable. When the player train approaches the turntable on an access path and the turntable is not in the required position, stop just short of the turntable and wait until the table is in position. There will be a screen notification when the turntable is ready.

When moving onto the turntable, proceed until the engine is fully positioned on the turntable. There will be a screen notification when the engine is correctly positioned.

When the engine is positioned, set the throttle to 0% and set the reverser to neutral (or 0% for steam engines). The turntable will start to move when both conditions are met. Do not move the engine while the table is turning.

When the turntable is in the required position, the train can be moved off the table.

#### 11.7.2.2. AI Turntable Behavior¶

The turntable will always move to the required position over the shortest angle.

When a train requests the turntable but the turntable is already activated or occupied by another train, the request is queued. The turntable is released when the occupying engine moves off the turntable and is a short distance clear of it. If no other requests are queued, the turntable will remain in that position until the next request.

When an AI train approaches the turntable on an access path and the turntable is not in the required position, the train will stop just short of the turntable and will request the turntable to move to that position.

When an AI train is requested to exit from a storage track and the turntable is not in that position, it will request the turntable to move but will not start to move toward the turntable until the turntable is in position.

#### 11.7.2.3. Turntable Paths¶

The Track Viewer will show paths leading through the turntable. Turntable paths, however, must not pass through the actual turntable itself, but rather start outside the turntable area, as shown in this image:

It is advisable to have separate access paths for extracting trains from the pool and sending trains to the pool, especially if the turntable is shared by multiple pools. Otherwise, if a train is send to the turntable at approximately the same time as another is extracted, there is a risk of a deadlock situation. The program cannot resolve this, as it cannot see that both trains are bound to proceed onto the same track while the train that is being extracted is still waiting for the turntable or is being turned.

#### 11.7.2.4. Turntables and Frame Rate¶

Normally, the turntable frame rate (speed at which the table rotates) is taken from the shape file of the turntable.

However, as AI trains can use a turntable anywhere on a route, it may be that the shape file of a particular turntable which is not in view has not been loaded, and therefor the frame rate can not be derived in that way. The value as defined for the pool is used as substitute.

If at any time the turntable is used when its shape file is loaded, this substitute value is replaced by the value as defined in the shape file. One frame per second relates to a rotation speed of 0.1 degrees per second. This parameter is optional. If not defined, a default value of 30 frames per second is used, which gives a default rotation speed of 3 degrees per second.

## 11.8. Changing Weather¶

The current cloud cover, precipitation, and visibility can be varied over the course of the timetable day with weather files. Weather files reside within a special WeatherFiles subdirectory of the route’s folder and they have the file extension *.weather-or. They are selected by the player from the timetable mode menu.

A weather file is a JSON file that consists of a single array, named “Changes”, each item of which represents a weather event that activates at a specific time. Each event is a JSON object whose “Type” property identifies the kind of weather event. Concretely, a weather file follows the format:

{
"Changes": [
{
"Type": "<type>",
"<property>": "<value>"
}
]
}


There are three types of events: Clear, Precipitation, and Fog, each with their own individual sets of properties.

### 11.8.1. “Clear” event¶

A Clear event removes any precipitation or fog while also setting the prevailing overcast conditions. Clear events contain the following JSON properties:

Property Type Description
Time string The 24-hour time this event activates.
Overcast number The overcast intensity as a percentage from 0 to 100.
OvercastVariation number The variation in overcast intensity as a percentage from 0 to 100.
OvercastRateOfChange number The rate of change of overcast intensity as a scaling factor from 0 to 1.
OvercastVisibility number The resulting visibility, in meters. The value must be in the range from 10000 to 60000. (For lower values, use a Fog event.)

### 11.8.2. “Precipitation” event¶

A Precipitation event represents a rain spell followed by a clear spell, with smooth transitions into, out of, and between both phases.

Property Type Description
Time string The 24-hour time this event activates.
Phase 1: Build up to precipitation
OvercastPrecipitationStart number The overcast intensity during the build up to the precipitation spell as a percentage from 0 to 100.
OvercastBuildUp number The rate of change of overcast intensity in advance of the precipitation spell as a scaling factor from 0 to 1.
PrecipitationStartPhase number The duration of the precipitation build up phase, in seconds. Must be in the range from 30 to 240.
Phase 2: Precipitation spell
PrecipitationType string The type of precipitation. Must be one of Snow or Rain.
PrecipitationDensity number The precipitation intensity as a scaling factor from 0 to 1.
PrecipitationVariation number The variability of the precipitation intensity as a scaling factor from 0 to 1.
PrecipitationProbability number The probability of the precipitation event as a percentage from 0 to 100.
PrecipitationSpread number The number of distinct periods of showers during the spell. Must be in the range from 1 to 1000.
PrecipitationVisibilityAtMinDensity number The visibility at minimum precipitation density.
PrecipitationVisibilityAtMaxDensity number The visibility at maximum precipitation density.
Phase 3: Dispersion after precipitation
OvercastDispersion number The rate of change of overcast intensity after the precipitation spell as a scaling factor from 0 to 1.
PrecipitationEndPhase number The duration of the precipitation dispersion phase, in seconds. Must be in the range from 30 to 360.
Phase 4: Clear spell
Overcast number The overcast intensity as a percentage from 0 to 100.
OvercastVariation number The variation in overcast intensity as a percentage from 0 to 100.
OvercastRateOfChange number The rate of change of overcast intensity as a scaling factor from 0 to 1.
OvercastVisibility number The resulting visibility, in meters. The value must be in the range from 10000 to 60000.

### 11.8.3. “Fog” event¶

A Fog event greatly reduces the prevailing visibility. It features smooth transitions into and out of the fog, from the previous weather event and to the next weather event.

Property Type Description
Time string The 24-hour time this event activates.
FogVisibility number The resulting visibility, in meters. Maximum value 1000. (For higher values, use a Clear event.)
FogSetTime number The transition time for fog to set in, in seconds. The value must be in the range from 300 to 3600.
FogLiftTime number The transition time for fog to lift, in seconds. The value must be in the range from 360 to 3600.
FogOvercast number The resulting overcast intensity after the fog lifts as a percentage from 0 to 100.

## 11.9. Example of a Timetable File¶

Here is an excerpt of a timetable file (shown in Excel):

## 11.10. What tools are available to develop a Timetable?¶

It is recommended to use a powerful stand-alone program (Excel is not required), called Timetable Editor. It is included in the OR pack, and accessed from the Tools button on the OR menu.