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Latest Updates
Feb
20
Sacramento Northern Update Available Now
Posted by Jio Butler on 20 February 2017 02:13 PM

In response to your important feedback on a variety of add-ons available for Train Simulator 2017, G-TraX have today released an update for the Sacramento Northern: Suisun Bay – San Francisco Route.

Here is a list of what has been addressed:

  • Resolved missing texture issues
  • Improved the rendering of the Interurban rolling stock
  • Various minor scenery adjustments
  • Revised dialog formatting in the ‘Walnuts to Market’ scenario
  • Updated user manual to recommend usage of the Silverlining “3D” weather types in custom scenarios

If you own the Sacramento Northern: Suisun Bay – San Francisco Route, the update will download automatically from Steam. If you have any problems/queries with regard to the update, leave a comment below or submit a ticket to our support site where our Support Team will be ready to assist.

If you do not yet own the Sacramento Northern: Suisun Bay – San Francisco Route, why not pick it up now and experience classic American interurban railroading!

The Sacramento Northern: Suisun Bay – San Francisco Route update will be approximately 309 MB in size.

No Updated Content? Steam File Verify

In the unlikely event that Steam fails to update the Add-Ons listed in the article, you’ll need to perform a file verify and ensure Steam provisions your installation properly. Follow the instructions listed at this link to perform a file verify to reset your installation to default. Note that this process can take some time to complete and, if you have a high number of Add-Ons, we’d recommend you do this overnight.


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Feb
1
Six-Axle Success Story
Posted by Jio Butler on 01 February 2017 09:50 AM

General Electric’s husky C30-7 diesel in CSX Livery is now ready for Train Simulator service!

During a production run that stretched 10 years, General Electric produced more than 1,000 of its husky, six-axle, 3,000-horsepower C30-7 diesels, making the type by far the most successful among the builder’s “Dash 7” line of locomotives. And, in the livery of eastern rail giant CSX, the GE C30-7 diesel is now ready for Train Simulator service.

During the mid-1970s, General Electric’s original and landmark line of mainline diesel locomotives – nicknamed “U-Boats” – had largely reached the end of their development potential and GE turned toward an evolutionary line of diesel successors — which soon became known as General Electric “Dash 7” locomotives.

GE’s Dash 7s promised advanced control features, better fuel efficiency, and improved reliability over the older generation of U-boats. While still relying upon GE’s proven FDL-series, four-stroke diesel power plant, the Dash 7s, as compared to their predecessors, improved fuel economy by approximately 16 percent.

The timing of GE’s introduction of its Dash 7 line was fortunate indeed. The rush by large U. S. railroads, including Burlington Northern and Union Pacific, to acquire motive power to handle the expansive volume of coal tonnage from Wyoming’s Powder River Basin was in full fury, a fact that had helped the six-axle, 3,000-horsepower U30C become the best-seller in General Electric’s line of U-Boats. And thus, it came as no surprise that the first of GE’s new Dash 7 line to enter production, in the summer of 1976, was a direct success to the U30C – the six-axle, 3,000-horsepower C30-7.

Like the U30C before it, the C30-7 employed a 16-cylinder version of GE’s four-cycle FDL-series diesel power plant. The C30-7 stretched 67-feet, 3 inches in length and, depending upon specifications, weighed in at up to 420,000 pounds. Also like its U30C predecessor, the C30-7 largely retained the traditional curved cab styling of GE’s U-Boat line, but featured oversized radiators and a widened carbody at the rear.

Following the debut of the C30-7 in 1976, General Electric’s Dash 7 diesel line would expand to include models with horsepower ratings ranging from 2,300- to 3,600-horsepower, and, in multiple variants, offer railroads the options of four-axle (B-B) or six-axle (C-C) wheel arrangements and the use of either GE’s 16-cylinder or 12-cylinder 7FDL power plants (including a 12-cylinder version of the C30-7, designated the C30-7A). With production of Dash 7 diesels lasting until in-turn being supplanted by GE’s “Dash 8” line (beginning in 1983), total production of GE Dash 7 diesels worldwide exceeded 3.000 locomotives, and when C30-7 production concluded in 1986, the final tally for the husky six-axle, 3,000-horsepower diesel was 1,078 units built.

General Electric’s C30-7 was purchased by nine original buyers and among them were two predecessors of today’s CSX. The Louisville & Nashville and Seaboard Coast Line purchased a total of 95 C30-7s which, upon CSX’s creation, joined the big road’s roster (CSX road numbers 7000-7094) and it is in CSX’s classic blue, yellow, and gray “YN2” livery that the General Electric C30-7 is now available for Train Simulator duty.

Virtual Rail Creations (VRC) is the developer of the CSX C30-7 and the locomotive includes advanced features and controls, including engine start-up procedures and functioning EOT (“end of train”) and HDT (“head of train”) devices. Provided in clean and weathered CSX “YN2” livery variations, the C30-7 is accompanied by 2-bay ACF covered hoppers in CSX, Chessie System, and Seaboard System liveries as well as with a CSX 100-ton coal hopper. And to put the big GE to immediate work, the DLC includes a trio of career scenarios for Train Simulator’s CSX Miami-West Palm Beach route (route available separately) and the locomotive is enabled for Quick Drive duty. – Gary Dolzall


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Jan
31
Introducing Sherman Hill Scenario Pack 01
Posted by Jio Butler on 31 January 2017 12:21 PM

Now available, Sherman Hill Scenario Pack 01 delivers diverse freight railroading challenges on Union Pacific’s famed transcontinental route!

Along the eastern rim of the great Rock Mountains, the Laramie Range rises up to challenge the transcontinental passage of Union Pacific’s daily armada of trains, and the result is one of the greatest shows in all of American railroading – Sherman Hill. And now, the new Sherman Hill Scenario Pack 01 brings the challenges of busy, contemporary freight railroading to Train Simulator’s popular version of the famed route.

Between Cheyenne and Laramie, Wyoming, a direct distance of 56 miles, the Union Pacific of today – just as it has been for more than a century – is an extraordinary steel conveyor of rail tonnage, a bustling and historic railroad that serves as one of America’s most dynamic and important transcontinental rail lines. Union Pacific’s original crossing of the Laramie Range was set down in 1868 and crested the high plateau at an elevation of 8,247 feet above sea level and at a remote, windswept place named Lone Tree Pass. Shortly after the railroad’s completion, though, the summit was renamed in honor of the accomplished United States Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman – and forever after, Union Pacific’s line became known as Sherman Hill.

Union Pacific’s original summit route had been hastily constructed and proved an operating bottleneck. As the twentieth century began, UP, under E. H. Harriman, relocated its main line a few miles to the south and constructed 1,800-foot Hermosa Tunnel. The new alignment allowed UP to reduce the line’s ruling gradients, lower its summit to 8,015-feet, and replace the original Dale Creek trestle with an earthen fill. Following the line’s relocation, UP, over the next two decades, double-tracked the route, including construction of a second bore for Hermosa Tunnel. Further change came to Sherman Hill in 1953 when Union Pacific opened a third track – called Track 3 – via a longer but lower-gradient alignment which allowed heavy westbound trains to work their way up a 0.8-percent grade rather than the direct route’s 1.5 percent grades.

The newly released Sherman Hill Scenario Pack 01 puts you at the engineer’s controls to move heavy mainline tonnage across Sherman Hill (also known as the Laramie Subdivision) as well as handle challenging yard and lineside industry switching tasks. The pack’s ten career scenarios re-capture the era from the mid-1990s through present day and you’ll take the throttle of diverse mainline motive power ranging from Union Pacific EMD SD70Ms, SD60Ms, and SD40-2s to GE ES44ACs and Dash 9-44CWs to forward intermodal, manifest freight, grain, and coal tonnage over busy Sherman Hill. You’ll also climb aboard an EMD SW1500 and Union Pacific’s unique SW10 “Hammerhead” rebuilt diesel switchers for yard and lineside industry duties. Select scenarios recall the era immediately following the merger of Southern Pacific into Union Pacific and feature SP power working across rugged Sherman Hill.

The ten career scenarios included in Sherman Hill Scenario Pack 01 cover the full breadth of this popular Train Simulator route, from Cheyenne in the east to its western terminus at Laramie, Wyoming. In more than eight hours of new and challenging Train Simulator experiences, you’ll handle heavy intermodals and freights crossing Sherman Hill via Tracks 1 and 2, a manifest coming off the Denver Line and traveling west on Track 3, and you’ll be assigned to switching duties in Cheyenne Refinery District, at Wycon, and in Laramie Yard. All scenarios require Train Simulator’s Sherman Hill route and select scenarios require the Southern Pacific Donner Pass route (both available separately).

Through the screenshots and captions below, let’s explore the diversity of contemporary freight railroading that is brought to life in the ten career scenarios of Sherman Hill Scenario Pack 01, now available at the Steam Store!  – Gary Dolzall


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Jan
20
South End Splendor
Posted by Jio Butler on 20 January 2017 10:16 AM

The Sacramento Northern, South End route is now available, bringing American interurban railroading to Train Simulator!

The Sacramento Northern, South End route is now available at the Steam Store, bringing to Train Simulator the extraordinary experience – and unique operating challenges – of classic American interurban railroading set in the late 1930 and 1940s!

In the early decades of the twentieth century, before America’s travel habits turned to the automobile, electric-powered interurban railroads stretched across much of the United States, laying down more than 15,000 route miles of electrified trackage and numbering in the hundreds of railroad companies. And among the most fabled names of America’s interurban railways – among the likes of the Pacific Electric, the Chicago, North Shore & Milwaukee, and the Indiana Railroad – stood California’s Sacramento Northern Railway.

Formed in the late 1920s through the consolidation of two electric railways – the Northern Electric Railway and the Oakland, Antioch, & Eastern (for a time renamed the San Francisco-Sacramento Railroad) – the Sacramento Northern was controlled by the Western Pacific and stretched 185 miles from San Francisco via the Sacramento Valley to Chico, California, giving it claim to offering the longest interurban ride in the United States. But it was the Sacramento Northern’s “South End” which so mesmerized train-enthusiasts in those bygone decades – and indeed has done so ever since.

Now, through the artistry of developer G-Trax and its masterful attention to detail and devotion to authentically re-capturing the interurban era of the 1930s and 1940, the Sacramento Northern, South End route comes to Train Simulator!

Stretching approximately 45 route miles in length, the new Sacramento Northern, South End route extends from San Francisco and Oakland, California to Mallard Island and Suisun Bay in scenic Contra Costa County, as well as to the steel mill town of Pittsburg, California.

Starting from San Francisco’s Transbay Terminal, which Sacramento Northern’s interurbans shared with the electric trains of the Key System and Southern Pacific’s Interurban Electric Railway, this new route re-creates the massive 4.5-mile-long, twin-span Bay Bridge crossing from San Francisco to Oakland, over which trains operated with the aid of an innovative in-cab signaling system. Once across the Bay Bridge, the route navigates the dense trackage of the Oakland “Mole” (Emeryville, California), then takes to the streets and avenues of Oakland in one of interurban railroading’s most cherished and beloved attributes – street-running.

Tucked amid the urban sprawl of Oakland is snug Shafter Avenue depot, car barns, and yard, which despite its diminutive size was the hub of Sacramento Northern south-end operations. A journey up Shafter Avenues takes the Sacramento Northern to its own private right-of-way and the interurban experience changes dramatically, as the SN (starting at Rockridge and an initial grade of 4.5 percent) ascents the Oakland Hills, burrows through 3,600-foot-long Redwood Peak Tunnel, then begins a descent through the scenic Redwood Canyon and into rural Contra Costa County and the agriculturally rich Sacramento Valley.

The Sacramento Northern Railway enjoyed many claims to fame, but perhaps none were more iconic nor beloved than that found on the south banks of Suisun Bay at Mallard Island. There, to continue the journey to Sacramento, SN’s trains called upon the services of the steel-hulled, wooden-decked, gasoline-powered ferry “Ramon” to cross the bay from Mallard to Chipps, California.

From bustling Transbay Terminal in San Francisco to the rugged Oakland Hills and onward to the wooden deck of the ferry Ramon, the new Sacramento Northern, South End route brings this famed interurban railway and, indeed, the timeless appeal of the interurban-era experience to full and vibrant life. The route will bring you opportunity to operate Sacramento Northern’s classic Holman Car Company 1003-class interurban (provided in both motor and trailer versions) for passenger service, as well as take the controls of the railroad’s 63-ton General Electric 650-class Steeple Cab electric locomotives in freight duty. The Sacramento Northern, South End route also features more than a dozen types of freight equipment authentic to the period and, to bring the San Francisco-Oakland segment of the line to full life, AI versions of the Key System’s distinctive articulated Bridge Unit and the Interurban Electric Railway’s “red car” heavy interurban are included. The route’s fidelity in re-capturing the era of the late 1930s and early 1940s is superb, with authentic structures, vehicles, custom signals, and characters all helping to recall the evocative California of a bygone time.

The Sacramento Northern, South End route will bring to you the opportunity to immediately test your “motorman” skills by providing an enjoyable and highly challenging selection of 17 career scenarios (including a tutorial for using the authentic in-cab signal system and a variety of passenger, freight, and switching activities). The Sacramento Northern, South End route – and all the magic of America’s fascinating interurban era – now awaits you and is available at the Steam Store! –Gary Dolzall


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Jan
12
An Almighty Stallion
Posted by Jio Butler on 12 January 2017 01:11 PM

The Legendary Iron Horse has Galloped into Train Simulator!

Back in the early 1900s, the Royal Bavarian State Railways were in need of a new steam locomotive fleet that would specialise in express passenger operations. Maffei, a locomotive manufacturer which dated back to the 1830s, was chosen to provide the new fleet; the new locomotives were to be a development of the Baden IV f, several concepts were brought forward to the new design, with the ultimate difference of housing more power for their intended duties.

In 1908, construction of the Bavarian S 3/6 had begun, the first order was for 23 locomotives and they had all joined the rails by 1911. Despite being under the same class, multiple series would be built; the first 3 series, a-c, featured smaller driving wheels than the following d & e series, which were destined for exclusive express operations out of Munich. Some locomotives differed very little, if not at all, this was the case for the last S 3/6s for the Royal Bavarian State as they were built to aid in the First World War.

Even in the 1920s, with Deutsche Reichsbahn now in control, the S 3/6 fleet (now known as the DR BR 18) would continue to grow throughout the decade. Series k was the first to be delivered to DR, these locomotives were fitted with larger superheaters to make them even more powerful than their predecessors. It was the k series that hauled the famous Rheingold Express and ensure the BR 18s place in locomotive history.

After more than 20 years of production, the final DR BR 18 rolled out in 1931. A total of 159 had entered service in that time, an incredible feat of period engineering. Constant developments ensured that the BR 18s were set to stay, and even right into the 1950s, they could still be seen doing what they did best. It was in the ‘50s when the fleet became known as the DB BR 18, the change owing to Deutsche Bundesbahn’s reign, and 30 examples were modernised. A new lease of life was found for the rebuilt locomotives, they could compete with the BR 01’s performance all while providing an unbeatable efficiency.

The 1960s would be the DB BR 18’s final decade, many locomotives were ageing (along with the steam era itself), and the modified variants developed fate-sealing faults that forced a reduction in power. By 1966, most of the fleet had faced the cutter’s torch and only a handful would survive into preservation. One locomotive, 18 505, remained in service into the late 1960s, and was one such example that still sits on the rails to this day.

Overall, the DB BR 18s remained unmatched throughout their operational life. A key locomotive fleet to 20th Century Germany, with a few examples living on to carry the legacy left behind them. It’s time for you to discover the might behind the Bavarian Pacific, as the DB BR 18 from Partner Programme Developer, Eisenbahnwerk, is available now for Train Simulator!

The DB BR 18 for Train Simulator features the classic steam locomotive 18 505 in DB Black & Red livery, preserved condition, and 18 461-508 in running condition. Get to know the intricate art of steam by taking the BR 18s across the beautiful Mosel Valley route in several Career Scenarios. The passengers will be looking forward to the heritage operations ahead, will you step up to the task?

The DB BR 18 is available now for Train Simulator, head to the Store for more details.


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