Do not understand rail setup

Don't know how to use a machine? Looking for efficient setups? Stuck in a mission?
Garebear
Manual Inserter
Manual Inserter
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:41 pm
Contact:

Do not understand rail setup

Post by Garebear »

I'm trying to have two areas trains go to on a two way track, the stops/areas are one way loops, the trains would then all come up to a depot currently six deep to load and leave on one track which peels off six ways. I have done everything I can think of to make this happen, but unfortunately I do not understand the rail signal system because it is truly and utterly incomprehensible(I had to ditch the tutorial on it), and seems to make up rules as it goes along. What does it take? Is this possible?

User avatar
5thHorseman
Smart Inserter
Smart Inserter
Posts: 1051
Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2016 11:21 pm
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by 5thHorseman »

Maybe a picture of what you're trying to do would help.

Go through the tutorial again and stop when you get confused, and then ask about that here as well.
Factorio For Beginners Come along with me as I detail (hopefully) every single thing you can do in Factorio with a focus on explaining to beginners, in a lighthearted, slow paced Let's Play style.

astroshak
Fast Inserter
Fast Inserter
Posts: 247
Joined: Thu May 10, 2018 9:59 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by astroshak »

I don’t normally advise doing this, but it may help you to go looking online for a set of rail Blueprints, consisting of a Straight Rail, a Tee, a 90 degree turn, a Crossing, a Station Inlet, a Station Outlet, and a Stacker/Parking Lot.

Having a set of rail BP’s already figured out lets you avoid the worst of the signaling headaches.

Also, try to avoid two-way tracks. It costs a few more resources, but two one-way tracks are far more effective, and can carry a lot more traffic. One-way track pairs are also, IMO, simpler to signal for multiple trains; two-way tracks are capable of handling multiple trains wanting to use them, but are more effective at only dealing with a single train wanting to travel along its length.

Garebear
Manual Inserter
Manual Inserter
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:41 pm
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Garebear »

5thHorseman wrote:
Wed Jul 22, 2020 10:34 pm
Go through the tutorial again and stop when you get confused, and then ask about that here as well.
I took pictures but oh no, that tutorial was absolutely awful, never again, absolutely abysmal compared to the other intuitive tutorials, probably because it's so heavily automated and thus needlessly complicated.
astroshak wrote:
Wed Jul 22, 2020 11:15 pm
I don’t normally advise doing this, but it may help you to go looking online for a set of rail Blueprints, consisting of a Straight Rail, a Tee, a 90 degree turn, a Crossing, a Station Inlet, a Station Outlet, and a Stacker/Parking Lot.

Having a set of rail BP’s already figured out lets you avoid the worst of the signaling headaches.

Also, try to avoid two-way tracks. It costs a few more resources, but two one-way tracks are far more effective, and can carry a lot more traffic. One-way track pairs are also, IMO, simpler to signal for multiple trains; two-way tracks are capable of handling multiple trains wanting to use them, but are more effective at only dealing with a single train wanting to travel along its length.
I can't seem to find a lot of train blueprints that aren't the size of my entire base, everyone has megabase on the brain. I basically gave up on the idea, there's no way to control train behaviors, just a bizarre zoning system and stops, really doesn't jive with the rest of the game for me, this is what I was attempting before I realized the game just isn't designed with this in mind.
Attachments
Screenshot_21.jpg
Screenshot_21.jpg (518.44 KiB) Viewed 454 times
Screenshot_20.jpg
Screenshot_20.jpg (489.94 KiB) Viewed 454 times
Screenshot_19.jpg
Screenshot_19.jpg (667.33 KiB) Viewed 454 times

User avatar
5thHorseman
Smart Inserter
Smart Inserter
Posts: 1051
Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2016 11:21 pm
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by 5thHorseman »

Garebear wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:07 am
I can't seem to find a lot of train blueprints that aren't the size of my entire base
here's a favorite:
https://factorioprints.com/view/-KZGMoiKxO8HsEngq0B7

I have a similar one that I made myself but I don't like it anymore. I've not gotten around to making a publish-worthy alternative:
https://factorioprints.com/view/-KxkEDeVP8lgssqcAfQW
Garebear wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:07 am
I basically gave up on the idea, there's no way to control train behaviors, just a bizarre zoning system and stops, really doesn't jive with the rest of the game for me, this is what I was attempting before I realized the game just isn't designed with this in mind.
You have no signals on that rail at all that I see. Trains will crash on it if you let more than 1 in there.
Factorio For Beginners Come along with me as I detail (hopefully) every single thing you can do in Factorio with a focus on explaining to beginners, in a lighthearted, slow paced Let's Play style.

Garebear
Manual Inserter
Manual Inserter
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:41 pm
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Garebear »

5thHorseman wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:20 am
Garebear wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:07 am
I can't seem to find a lot of train blueprints that aren't the size of my entire base
here's a favorite:
https://factorioprints.com/view/-KZGMoiKxO8HsEngq0B7

I have a similar one that I made myself but I don't like it anymore. I've not gotten around to making a publish-worthy alternative:
https://factorioprints.com/view/-KxkEDeVP8lgssqcAfQW
Garebear wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:07 am
I basically gave up on the idea, there's no way to control train behaviors, just a bizarre zoning system and stops, really doesn't jive with the rest of the game for me, this is what I was attempting before I realized the game just isn't designed with this in mind.
You have no signals on that rail at all that I see. Trains will crash on it if you let more than 1 in there.
Yes, I've seen these sorts of setups, none of that is helpful for my purposes. I removed all the signals prior, this is after I had stripped out everything in an attempt to rework it, nothing I did worked, probably because the game is fully automated with train behavior and relies heavily on a two track system to function, which means double the track, I guess. I strongly dislike this aspect of the game, I'll put my head into using bots on blueprints so I don't have to interact with it.

User avatar
5thHorseman
Smart Inserter
Smart Inserter
Posts: 1051
Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2016 11:21 pm
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by 5thHorseman »

Garebear wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:29 am
nothing I did worked, probably because the game is fully automated with train behavior and relies heavily on a two track system to function, which means double the track, I guess. I strongly dislike this aspect of the game.
The problem isn't that the game isn't written to use single, 2-way tracks. it's that single, 2-way tracks have inherent flaws that are exposed in the game.

to get your train station there to work, all you need is 4 regular signals plus as many regular signals as you can fit around that loop, to let trains queue up behind the train at the station. Also you need more room behind the station for trains to queue up. You can do this by reversing the place the station is so trains enter on the top, not the bottom.

Your setup will only support the number of trains that can all fit in a single station. That's not the game's fault, it's just math.
Screenshot_21.jpg
Screenshot_21.jpg (88.38 KiB) Viewed 438 times
Factorio For Beginners Come along with me as I detail (hopefully) every single thing you can do in Factorio with a focus on explaining to beginners, in a lighthearted, slow paced Let's Play style.

mmmPI
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 456
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 6:10 pm
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by mmmPI »

5thHorseman wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 3:05 am

to get your train station there to work, all you need is 4 regular signals plus as many regular signals as you can fit around that loop, to let trains queue up behind the train at the station. Also you need more room behind the station for trains to queue up. You can do this by reversing the place the station is so trains enter on the top, not the bottom.
I think you meant 4 chain signals, (in green) plus as many regular signals (in red).
I also think this is the proper way to signal this piece of track, if you place this at then end of a 2-way track.
Garebear wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:07 am
this is what I was attempting before I realized the game just isn't designed with this in mind.
Garebear wrote:
Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:45 pm
I'm trying to have two areas trains go to on a two way track, the stops/areas are one way loops, the trains would then all come up to a depot currently six deep to load and leave on one track which peels off six ways.
I tried to understand from the pictures and the explanation but i need more details, my guess is you had in mind a depo where trains waits, and sometimes they are dispatched as mobile turrets, then come-back to the depo.

The signaling is one part of the puzzle that does 2 different things : preventing trains from crashing into other trains AND giving orientation to the tracks.

Using one-way tracks, you use signals to give orientation to tracks, the signal is always on the right side.
Using two-way tracks, you need a signal at the exact same spot each side of the track.
Signals cut the rail network into small blocks. ( the different colored line that appear when you hold a signal ).
Train can't enter a block if it's a one-way of the opposite way. ( obviously ).
Signals guard the next block and allow trains only if the next block is empty.
Chain signals guard the next block and allow trains only if the next block is an open regular signal or contain the destination-station.
If the next block is also a chain signal, it looks one block further.
You need to avoid situation where trains could face each other on the same two-way track. ( obviously )
For this you utilize the difference between "chain-signal" and "regular signal".
This way you can "predict"/"order" where trains are supposed to wait before the path is clear for them to reach destination.( this is made necessay and a more difficult using one way tracks because it can create "dead-lock" easily.)

This 5thHorseman showed well which kind of signaling would function for the piece of track.

The other thing you need to consider is the schedule for the trains.

When you automate a train, it leaves for the first train station on schedule.
Upon reaching the destination, it leaves for the next one, unless it has a waiting condition.
Trains will try to reach the closest train stop with the same station name based on the perceived distance.
The way trains calculate the "closest path" implies many complicated rules that can be found on the wiki.https://wiki.factorio.com/Railway/Train_path_finding but usually it's the closest, unless some other trains block the way, then it can make a detour "smartly", usually it goes unnoticed .
Apart from that trains ignore other trains ( and players ), they only care about signals. ( no signals = crashes ).


Depending on what you had in mind, it might be impossible, some behaviors are either difficult, very hard or even impossible to make happen in the game, because it would require a different logic for how trains find their path, read signals, follow schedules and so on.

In this case maybe tweak your original idea so that it can fit with the game logic.

Some more advanced mechanism that allow advanced control on the automation are the interaction between the circuit network, the station, and the signals, disabling stations, or signals, can lead to new behaviors, sometimes it is necessary when one had a very precise idea on how train should behave, and sometimes even those new tools are not enough.

easiest path is to use blueprints i guess but you feel good when you finally have the trains doing something according to your own plan and also when you understand why they didn't previously :) hopefully this helps

User avatar
5thHorseman
Smart Inserter
Smart Inserter
Posts: 1051
Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2016 11:21 pm
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by 5thHorseman »

mmmPI wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 4:39 am
5thHorseman wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 3:05 am

to get your train station there to work, all you need is 4 regular signals plus as many regular signals as you can fit around that loop, to let trains queue up behind the train at the station. Also you need more room behind the station for trains to queue up. You can do this by reversing the place the station is so trains enter on the top, not the bottom.
I think you meant 4 chain signals, (in green) plus as many regular signals (in red).
No I meant what I said... but what I said was wrong :D

Though they shouldn't all be chains (it will work but it's actually not perfectly right). What you want is, of those 4 greens, 2 of them to be chains and 2 to be regular signals. You want chain signals going into that Y junction, and regulars going out. So nobody goes into the junction unless they can get out of it.

So of the 2 on the main line, the top one should be a chain and the bottom one a regular one. Of the two on the one-way portion, the bottom one should be a chain and the top one a regular one.

Sorry for the confusion @Garebear and thanks for spurring me to actually think about this @mmmPI.
Factorio For Beginners Come along with me as I detail (hopefully) every single thing you can do in Factorio with a focus on explaining to beginners, in a lighthearted, slow paced Let's Play style.

Koub
Global Moderator
Global Moderator
Posts: 5702
Joined: Fri May 30, 2014 8:54 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Koub »

If that may help, my bible when I have a train track to build is this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ZiL7_vfJtQ.
I know it's outdated, being 4 years old, but the signalling part is still accurate. The time tags in the video description make it easy to navigate through.
Koub - Please consider English is not my native language.

astroshak
Fast Inserter
Fast Inserter
Posts: 247
Joined: Thu May 10, 2018 9:59 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by astroshak »

Garebear wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:07 am
I can't seem to find a lot of train blueprints that aren't the size of my entire base, everyone has megabase on the brain. I basically gave up on the idea, there's no way to control train behaviors, just a bizarre zoning system and stops, really doesn't jive with the rest of the game for me, this is what I was attempting before I realized the game just isn't designed with this in mind.
Its not that “megabase is on the brain”. Rail BP’s are sized the way they are with the expectation that you are going to need to travel long distances. Personally I use one that is the length of three Large Power Poles at max distance from one another; the use of these lets me line things up very easily, and I am usually wanting to route power along the rails anyway, to whatever outpost I’m going to.

Most, however, are admittedly designed around having a typical train length larger than 1-1 (1 Locomotive and 1 Wagon). I have always tended towards 1-4, though 2-4 would admittedly be slightly faster, because I want the capacity that 4 cargo wagons can bring.

Signaling is one of the harder things (I think that, for a newbie, having all three oil products from Basic Oil Processing, and the entire Circuit Network were/are the only things harder to figure out in Factorio) to learn. Although an above poster did a pretty good job of explaining things, here are a few tips to keep in mind for signals :

Trains always drive so that their signals are to their Right.
One way track only requires signals on the Right side of the track. Two way tracks require signals on both sides, directly opposite one another.
Chain Signals belong wherever a train is going to cross, merge onto, or split away from, another rail line, before any such individual crossing. Rail Signals belong at the outlet of any area of such crossings.

To successfully unite One-Way and Two-Way tracks can be a nightmare. I’d suggest avoiding (if possible) crossing two-way tracks with another track, in an effort to leave the two-way track completely signal-free. Put a Chain Signal wherever a rail goes from one-way into two-way, and then after it again splits put a Rail Signal. Do this for both directions of the track. This is both in line with the rule of thumb above, and to prevent two trains barreling down the same line towards one another, only to become deadlocked by a signal pair in the middle of the line. Ideally, only one train would ever want to navigate that section of two-way track, further reducing the need for both signaling down that section of track, and the possibility of deadlocks.

That’s why I suggest using One-Way track pairs (trains travel one way on one track, and come back on the neighboring track) and avoiding Two-Way tracks; not only are they simpler (if slightly more costly) to set up and signal, but they are better able to handle multiple trains trying to use any one section of track and thus have a far higher overall throughput.

Hannu
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 757
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:27 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Hannu »

5thHorseman wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 5:37 am

So of the 2 on the main line, the top one should be a chain and the bottom one a regular one. Of the two on the one-way portion, the bottom one should be a chain and the top one a regular one.

You should always use chain signal in single track sections and before entering to single track section. 2 signal is enough in loop. Normal signal in entry point and chain signal before exit.
Untitled.png
Untitled.png (8.02 KiB) Viewed 349 times
This is working example of simple single track system. Passing rail on right side is optional. There can be 2 trains if passing rail is built and 1 train if there is only single track. When there is need for more than 2 trains it is generally better to build 2 track system, but adding passing tracks or waiting points on loops (by using normal signals) you can add the number of trains. There is not any game induced restrictions of use single tracks or any combination of single and double track systems. There was whole countries with mostly single tracks between cities, which ran under block control system before modern computer controlled path based control systems came.

Hannu
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 757
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:27 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Hannu »

Untitled.png
Untitled.png (11.6 KiB) Viewed 341 times
This is example how to build single track branch for two low traffic outposts from double track main line. If lines are very long (1-2 km) it may be good idea to put passing track near Y-joint. There is no room for waiting trains, but it is always techically and practically better to update to double track system at such traffic levels.

Hannu
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 757
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:27 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Hannu »

astroshak wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 9:29 am
To successfully unite One-Way and Two-Way tracks can be a nightmare. I’d suggest avoiding (if possible) crossing two-way tracks with another track, in an effort to leave the two-way track completely signal-free.
Untitled.png
Untitled.png (3.57 KiB) Viewed 335 times
It is always good idea to avoid crossings on main lines because they may cause throughput issues, but if such crossing is needed you can use this setup. It never deadlocks if there is proper place for all trains to go.

evileye.x
Manual Inserter
Manual Inserter
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Apr 29, 2019 5:22 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by evileye.x »

Train signals are not that complicated.
Just remember one simple rule:
Place chain signal before intersection, place normal signal after intersection.
Once you start using it, everything will be simple

If you want to have bi-directional track, place both on opposite sides with the same principle.

Place additional normal signal along the tracks if you want serial train stacking.

mmmPI
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 456
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 6:10 pm
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by mmmPI »

5thHorseman wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 5:37 am
No I meant what I said... but what I said was wrong :D
I didn't understand that the color red/green were meant for optionnal/required signal. I didn't even think of it 1 second, i was confused and assumed it was a wording error to use twice "regular".
there are several configuration that would "function" properly, and by this i means that can run forever without the need for manual intervention.
I drew the one that would be my habit:
file.jpg
file.jpg (96.99 KiB) Viewed 319 times
red dot are regular signal, green dot are chain signal.
Trains on this one are "allowed" to stay in blocks that are marked by a yellow cross.(guarded by regular signal)
Providing those are 1 train width at least, any train station on a yellow cross is not provoking problem, is fine.
Train shouldn't get stuck on a block marked by a red cross.(guarded by chain signal)
For this to happen, you place chained-signal to every "entrance" of a red-crossed-block.
The idea is also to place regular signal at each "exit" of a red-crossed-block, unless the next one is also a red-crossed-block, in this case the regular signal is not placed and you place a chain signal instead.

This would be my thought process when signaling to allow trains to go from station A to station B and back.

In this situation a train would look at the 5 block that are marked with a red cross, and only if those 5 are empty it would be allowed on the double way track. If 1 one them is not empty the train would wait in any of the loop BEFORE the 1rst chain signal of the whole chain:

From A to B, the train would look at the 1rst signal (1), a chain that prevent him from entering the junction "without a good reason", then a 2nd chain (2), ending the junction, prevent the train from entering the double way track "without a good reason", then a 3rd chain (3), opening a new junction, then a 4th chain (4) , closing previous junction and opening a new one. Then finally a regular signal (5) that is the "good reason" if open.

This means a trains either don't move, if no yellow cross block are available, or go directly to the next yellow cross block, only if the in-between red cross block are all empty. the chain signal are sort of linking the other blocks together for the pathfinding.

The orange circle i used to highlight the fact that those signals are optionnal, they are sort of an habit, for clarity, but when looking @Hannu's paint drawing, they are not present it would make a bigger block combining the 2 horizontal red-crossed-block which wouldn't change the general behavior. it's an example of why there are several configuration that can be used for signaling the same area with the same aim.

Following this idea you could remove the two pair of signal next to the number 3 and 4, creating one big block combining all 5 red-crossed-block while still getting the same logic but it may become harder to understand what's going on :).

Hannu
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 757
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:27 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Hannu »

evileye.x wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:17 pm
Train signals are not that complicated.
Just remember one simple rule:
Place chain signal before intersection, place normal signal after intersection.
Once you start using it, everything will be simple

If you want to have bi-directional track, place both on opposite sides with the same principle.

Place additional normal signal along the tracks if you want serial train stacking.
This is oversimplification which does not work with single tracks. You should never put normal signals on bidirectional track. There should always be free room after normal signal so that train does not stop and block other trains.

Hannu
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 757
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:27 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Hannu »

Untitled.png
Untitled.png (8.81 KiB) Viewed 293 times
There is an error in T-intersection in my previous post. Correct placement of signals and blocks are shown in this picture.

Garebear
Manual Inserter
Manual Inserter
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:41 pm
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Garebear »

I can only say at this point if you step back as a new player again and read this you'll understand why trains are truly awful in their design compared to the rest of the game. This is my first playthrough and I burned down literally everything(including oil processing) up to artillery and simple two way trains on their own track, and bots, and have artillery trains with bot restocking from my main bus, but trains require a CompTIA cert(luckily most Factorio fans have this).

You know what the solution is? I control the train logic directly, like most other objects in the game, the end.

Thanks for the solutions, of course, I would never commit that kind of mental energy into a one way stop/two way track/one way depot as in the images when I can just blueprint two one way tracks with bots and not deal with this mangled nightmare system.

Serenity
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 743
Joined: Fri Apr 15, 2016 6:16 am
Contact:

Re: Do not understand rail setup

Post by Serenity »

The implementation isn't really much different from railroad simulation games. They have exactly the same concepts. I have my rail blueprints, but I also often do simple junctions, like splitting a stop from a main line, manually. It's not difficult. Especially with dual track. You complicated things by using two-way tracks, which don't work well with multiple trains anyways
I control the train logic directly
Doesn't make any sense. Trains are automated. They need some way to know where they go. That's done with signals.

Post Reply

Return to “Gameplay Help”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users