47. MRH14-01-Jan2014-L.pdf - page 75

Radio base station - 1
An inexpensive one
evening project ...
ver the last century railroading has undergone
numerous changes as new technology has made
train operation safer and more efficient. We’ve
witnessed the development of advanced signaling systems,
continuous welded rail, and high-capacity freight cars yet
one of the most profound developments of the 20th century
often remains unrecognized.
Modeling a railroad
radio base station
– By M.R. (Matt) Snell
Photos by author
Radio has forever changed
the railroading landscape,
enabling train dispatchers to
control their territories from
hundreds or even thousands
of miles away while elimi-
nating the need for towers
and wayside operators. No
longer is a tower operator
required to hoop up train
orders. Instead, communica-
tion between train crews and
dispatchers is now direct,
facilitated by a series of way-
side radio base stations car-
rying radio and data signals
throughout the railroad.
Strategically placed to maxi-
mize signal strength, the
exterior of a base station
presents nothing more than
a group of small antennas
mounted on a tower accom-
panied by a nondescript
equipment housing, making
it a lineside detail that is eas-
ily overlooked.
Although plain on the outside, the interior is quite complex
as groups of electronic devices receive and transmit signals
enabling radio communication over large distances. Since
our focus as modelers is in replicating the visible rather
1: The prototype used
as the basis of this kit-
bash. It's located on the
NS Chicago line.
MRH-Jan 2014
1...,65,66,67,68,69,70,71,72,73,74 76,77,78,79,80,81,82,83,84,85,...123
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