Author Topic: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie  (Read 2963 times)

shane_man15

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Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« on: September 19, 2010, 01:01:59 AM »
After an Ops session at Matt's house, Me, Christian, and another guy (don't remember his name off hand) went into Muncie to watch trains for a bit. I used my ATCS Monitor with a connection running from my computer to my scanner. Now, I know everything worked, but it never showed any signals getting cleared OR any trains occupying the main.

For example, A Q300 series train rolled on into town, and nothing seemed to bother the feed at all. The only thing I do know is that it showed a feed up (indicated by red if I'm correct) at CP 229, CP 230, and two other spots out on the Frankfort district.
Just to give you a basic lay down, it didn't even show any activity from where we were sitting at. (Walnut Street)

Is it possible that I could've been using the wrong ATCS channels? it claims to use ATCS channel 5, and 6 is for Bluffton northward.
Shane Smiley (shane_man15)

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indyspy

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2010, 04:31:48 PM »
I maintain the ATCS files for the New Castle.

The ATCS is for the NS and the NS can't see much at all on the two CSX mains.
Two lines of text will apear when ether of the indications light up. One is when CSX has a signal lined, and the other is when something is on the Diamond on the CSX, thats it.

CP229 and CP230 do not actually feed anything directly to the NS dispatcher. They relay off the NS interlockings.

CP229 displays are off Elliot Street.
CP230 displays are off Walnut Street, and it has the two bits for the above CSX display, again not much.

Make sure your listening to the MCP channel 5.

You can get the newest files here. there have been several updates
http://inrd.gotdns.com/atcs/NS%20New%20Castle/

I was there recently and it worked great.

I have been despirately looking for a server site, but CIOR's place is just a bit too far away.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2010, 04:46:18 PM by indyspy »
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CIND 2254

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2010, 05:38:11 PM »
Is there a .ini file for the new castle? Reason I ask is when I go to load profile, it doesnt show up even though I have the LAY and MCP files.

                    Christian
Modeling High Hood GP30s on the CERA based in Kokomo circa. 1996-1998.

shane_man15

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2010, 06:58:25 PM »
You have to make one, Christian.

Well, how come Walnut Street wouldn't show up in red?
Me and Christian were sitting right on Walnut street and in that area, and didn't see anything pop up. I didn't anyways.
Shane Smiley (shane_man15)

Modeler of the Muncie, Richmond, and Fernald Railway.
Train horns are also my thing.

GIMME A CORVETTE ALREADY!

indyspy

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2010, 08:06:21 AM »
I do not provide INI files. Really just import your MCP data and then change your layout to the NS New Castle one.

I am not sure why you were not picking things up, but I don't know your radio setup. I can pick up East Royerton to East Noell with mine when I sit in downtown Muncie.

Make sure your listening to the MCP 897mhz side.
If in doubt, Notch it out!

shane_man15

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2010, 08:17:19 AM »
I programmed all the one's you said to program. It could be picking it up, but my computer could be the problem. I'm not for sure.

If I come back to Muncie again, We can meet up and try to sort this issue out.
Shane Smiley (shane_man15)

Modeler of the Muncie, Richmond, and Fernald Railway.
Train horns are also my thing.

GIMME A CORVETTE ALREADY!

Jeff

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2010, 02:35:14 PM »
Hate to be totally ignorant but what the heck are you guys talking about? Sounds interesting though. ???

shane_man15

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2010, 03:10:43 PM »
It's a program called ATCS Monitor and ATCS is a type of signaling. It is set out by antenna at around 800-900MHz. Since some scanners can pick up the signal being transferred, it can be used to go from your scanner to your computer's sound card, and then into the program, and it's supposed to show you whats going on around you or whatever your scanner can pick up.

I might have left out details but I'm not exactly for sure. I gave it my best shot to explain it. :)
Shane Smiley (shane_man15)

Modeler of the Muncie, Richmond, and Fernald Railway.
Train horns are also my thing.

GIMME A CORVETTE ALREADY!

storrs19

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2010, 12:14:19 PM »
I've been programming computers for 27 years and to me ATCS is a major pain in the rear.  It is clunky, very difficult to use and not very well laid out.  I'm sure this will start an argument on here but oh well.  You have to be a magician to set up an .ini file with it and go through hoops.  Whenever someone packs up a zip file I wish they would just include an ini file.  ATCS should have an icon or menu item that reads "create ini file".  Sure would make things much easier.  And I thought programming in assembler language was rough  ::)
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CIOR

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #9 on: September 22, 2010, 01:05:35 PM »
I've been programming computers for 27 years and to me ATCS is a major pain in the rear.  It is clunky, very difficult to use and not very well laid out.  I'm sure this will start an argument on here but oh well.  You have to be a magician to set up an .ini file with it and go through hoops.  Whenever someone packs up a zip file I wish they would just include an ini file.  ATCS should have an icon or menu item that reads "create ini file".  Sure would make things much easier.  And I thought programming in assembler language was rough  ::)

Then make a better one...  LOL....  Seriously, I believe there is much room for improvement. 
You have to remember this program is like 10 years old!  Little has changed and I've wondered why, especially in todays world.

CIND 2254

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #10 on: September 22, 2010, 02:11:16 PM »
Storrs, I very much agree about the ini files, they are a pain!
Modeling High Hood GP30s on the CERA based in Kokomo circa. 1996-1998.

shane_man15

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #11 on: September 22, 2010, 04:27:00 PM »
Christian

You know they make videos to help you make one, right? :P
Shane Smiley (shane_man15)

Modeler of the Muncie, Richmond, and Fernald Railway.
Train horns are also my thing.

GIMME A CORVETTE ALREADY!

CIND 2254

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #12 on: September 22, 2010, 08:10:53 PM »
Christian

You know they make videos to help you make one, right? :P
Yeah, i watched the videos, but when he opens up his program, its already blank and not monitoring nor linked with anything. When I open mine up, it automatically starts doing the metorlink layout, and I've tried creating an ini file, but i cant because it gets linked with the metrolink layout automatically.

Christian
Modeling High Hood GP30s on the CERA based in Kokomo circa. 1996-1998.

shane_man15

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #13 on: September 22, 2010, 10:08:19 PM »
That's why you change the layout, bro. :P

Are you coming back for the train show in October?
Shane Smiley (shane_man15)

Modeler of the Muncie, Richmond, and Fernald Railway.
Train horns are also my thing.

GIMME A CORVETTE ALREADY!

CIOR

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2010, 10:49:13 PM »
No worries guys, we now have a line on a site for Muncie.  Keep our fingers crossed!!!! 

Now we just need a smartphone app for ATCS!

shane_man15

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2010, 10:58:41 PM »
No worries guys, we now have a line on a site for Muncie.  Keep our fingers crossed!!!! 

Now we just need a smartphone app for ATCS!
Let's hope there's a smartphone app REAL soon. :P

Someone will be hosting a feed in Muncie?
Shane Smiley (shane_man15)

Modeler of the Muncie, Richmond, and Fernald Railway.
Train horns are also my thing.

GIMME A CORVETTE ALREADY!

CIOR

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #16 on: September 22, 2010, 11:06:54 PM »
Let's hope there's a smartphone app REAL soon. :P

Someone will be hosting a feed in Muncie?

Lets just say that things are moving in the "right" direction.  Whether it works out or not is always a different story.

The original plan fell through, but its still possible on another front that that original location are could be used.  If it was, the reception would be for MILES.  However this new location hopefully will suite the needs.  But we don't know yet.

shane_man15

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #17 on: September 22, 2010, 11:08:31 PM »
Ha!
It would be nice to see one up.

Now I don't have to struggle with scanners and visuals!  ;D
Shane Smiley (shane_man15)

Modeler of the Muncie, Richmond, and Fernald Railway.
Train horns are also my thing.

GIMME A CORVETTE ALREADY!

Rob

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2010, 06:43:33 PM »
If you get everything set up for monitoring with a radio and the layout loaded, does it ask if you want to save changes when closing program? if so, and you say yes, it should save that for the next start up. there is options for having different ones you have to select too once you get further into using the program. I guess to use ATCS monitor you have to like to be challenged,lol
 I myself like layout making with Trackbuilder 3 other than to me , that program is a bigger PITA to use than ATCSmonitor!
I have a good start to a "northcentral Indiana" layout following the Marion District as a basis and went both directions a little on each intersecting line with ATCS using what everyone should already have in their database that other layouts use. I need to "adjust" the way things are on the bottom of layout, which pretty much means starting from scratch :(
 Anyway, the Marion District has 4 NS mcps and CSX shows signals only at Milford Jct.
I am working on issues with the Huntington Dist. custodian before releasing what i have so far to ATCS group because what i have and what is in master db is way different in a few ways for the Wabash area.
For those who do not know, the Marion Dist currently has quite a bit on ATCS with more to come eventually. one block south of Wabash and one block north, then N Speicher covers from the CP north for 2 ATCS blocks (more actual blocks, but i can not pinpoint where it ends) then Claypool covers north of S Claypool to Warsaw diamond, then CP 412 shows us a little up by Goshen. Antenna masts and bases for them lay on ground at CP 21 too.
possible Claypool server in the future too.
If anyone is interested in the layout and mcp info, mesage me here, also state if you want the mcp info i use for the Huntington Dist or just the 2 for Marion Dist. (Wabash and W Lagro are given each others addresses if you use what you have already, plus a lot of other issues make things useless all the way to Mardenis)
Rob

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Re: Local ATCS while railfanning in Muncie
« Reply #19 on: November 16, 2010, 11:57:17 AM »
Rob,
  Are you guys going to be putting it online with a server?

Muncie is now in place but testing and tweaking.  Its all fun...LOL