It's been a busy start the autumn season in life and on the layout. But the Onondaga Cutoff is better for the effort, in two major ways.
First, with the help of friend Paul T., I finally made the plunge and updated the layout PC from Windows 8.1, which has been less stable than I liked for years, to Windows 10. This involved a whole evening of downloading and uploading, installing and failing, then using Google to find solutions to the issues and work through them. In the end, the computer is working as intended and all applications were seamlessly transferred. A real test will be the next operating session!
The other major project came about with a design question from Jack on the Island, and our reevaluation pointed us in the direction of some major changes to the back three tracks, to better accommodate locomotive manipulations. The major goal was to make room to store Amtrak consists at the back end of the yard, and allow new crossover capability so they could leave the yard with equipment ahead on the same track.
After cleaning up it was time to script out the new track design and make it fit. Working from the mandatory length of the back tracks I spaced out the new switches to fit and laid that route first, allowing it to cure overnight before starting the next ones. The next night, I was able to lay the remainder of the yard and weight it for curing. I installed new feeders and made all the soldier joints with the resistance soldering machine, still one of the best investments for anything larger than a small layout!