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Factorio Blueprint: Brian's Trains
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# Brian’s Trains
* Live version (including images) of this document is [HERE](https://docs.google.com/document/d/1hfdz3PCpe91HOSuna6A650LsVmBjO8YACzxFemrQKqA/edit?usp=sharing). Join the [discussion on Discord](https://discord.gg/hQnsXwpZ8A).
* [Auxiliary station blueprints](https://factorioprints.com/view/-M5PZvxZVXEZnmg4V7Hy) make it much easier… if you’re willing to install a few mods.
* [Self-Building Mega-Factory](https://factorioprints.com/view/-MNZWdWosuqr3vtaC2hD) (a city-block layout book)
Also:
* See the trains in action: [Turning On a Giant Rocket-Control-Unit Factory](https://youtu.be/JK8z9ABwyjI)
* Starting from scratch? Check out [Brian’s Bootstrap](https://factorioprints.com/view/-LvWjwX1U25krBg-auKR).
* Or try my [self-building rocket](https://factorioprints.com/view/-MGvN8qrxpCMbXJJn3Gh)!
* Actual testing of different quad-rail junctions. See [the video results](https://youtu.be/gmV0mkNOkSA).
* Hungry for power? [Tileable Self-Throttling Belt-Fed Reactor](https://factorioprints.com/view/-MJURcCFL-9L_cbihLys)
# Introduction
Some people create Malls while others like optimizing the science. For some reason, it’s the train network that inspired me. I wanted something that was drop-in (i.e. blueprints) but also easily upgraded as the base evolves. This means some sort of standardization with the pieces being of a similar size, at least along the rail itself.
Also important was performance. Trains make up the life-blood of a base and its important that they flow quickly and freely. Everything I’ve done is optimized for that, from the signals along the rails to the loading & unloading stations.
LTN (the “[logistic train network](https://mods.factorio.com/mod/LogisticTrainNetwork)”) is your friend! If you’re going to use it, make sure it’s installed before importing this blueprint book. If you’re not going to use it, see the “Life without LTN” in the _live_ document (linked at the top).
# Train Sizes
The basis of everything is the size of the trains to use. My design supports several different sizes for flexibility and growth. They are: (“<" or ">” is a locomotive and “C” is a car)


) Minimum train length: Set to “2” by the blueprint to support trains of any length.
(T<) Maximum train length: Set by the blueprint based on the size of the station. Copy this to the minimum-length to handle trains only of a single size (P>) Minimum provider stacks: Set by the blueprint to match the number of cars * 40. Sometimes smaller numbers are useful, maybe only 10 stacks for a new uranium mine trying to satisfy a refinement center.
Note that there is no specification of the item provided. That is read automatically from the buffer chests.
The above settings affect only the trains. If you want to limit the amount of product that is buffered, block out stacks on one chest (I always use the chest closest to the station head) so they can’t be filled. Because the chests are balanced, buffering will stop as soon as that one chest reaches its limit.
*Trains driven manually to the stop or sent from a manually-entered schedule will* **not** *fill because there is no LTN signal to say how much to load.*
## Requester Stations
These are the stations that unload trains. They provide one (yellow) belt per car and can be easily upgraded for higher output. Just remember that there have to be sufficient provider stations to satisfy it: A 4-blue-belt constant draw can’t be satisfied by a 4-yellow-belt constant source no matter how good the trains are.
Click on the stop (the outline of a train will appear when hovering over it) and give it a good name, like “Iron Smelter #1 Ore”.
The “constant combinator” beside the power pole at the head of the station describes what is requested and how much. Set them as follows:
(T#) The number of trains that can be sent at once: Set this to 1 plus the number of stack slots available before the station (but off the main track). A siding track will be “1”, a one-station loop will be “3”, a four-station loop *without* a stacker will be “1” (maybe “2”), and a four-station loop *with* a stacker will be “3” or more. Remember that multi-station loop shares the stacker with all the stations.
(T>) Minimum train length: Set by the blueprint based on the size of the station. Not much point in changing it as long as all provider stations are at least this big.
(T<) Maximum train length: Set by the blueprint based on the size of the station. (R<) Minimum request stacks: Set by the blueprint to match the number of cars * 40. Sometimes smaller numbers are useful, maybe only 10 stacks for a new uranium refinement center. (P>) Minimum provider amount: Set by the blueprint to a very high value to prevent this station to being mistaken as a provider.
(X) The item being requested: Set this to actual item (delete the actual “X” if it’s there) desired and the *negative* of the amount of it desired. This must be less than the total buffer size (minus some margin for error). An iron buffer chest holds 32 stacks and there are 12 per car. A car has 40 stacks, or 3.33 per chest when unloaded. Thus, don’t set this higher than 32 * 12 * cars * stacksize. That’s 153,600 (call it 150k) for an 8-car ore train and 307200 (call it 300k) for a 4-car circuit train. **Better though** to just set it to about 2x to 5x the size of a single full train and so not have product wasted just sitting around. Remember to make the number *negative *or it won’t request anything!
Don’t request multiple item types in a single station. Please: Just don’t.
## Depots
The LTN requires a set of stations called “depots”. All trains go here after delivery to receive new instructions. They will wait there until there is a job to do. Even with all the precautions, it’s possible for a train to return to the depot not completely empty (e.g. a power failure at the unloading station). These existing contents would then be shipped to whatever provider and receiver stations make up the next request. This should still be safe — unbalanced loading will only slow the loading process and filter inserters will leave the unwanted items on the train — but its still best to not proceed in this situation. The depot blueprints will halt a non-empty train at the stop, providing an alarm so you can take a look and diagnose how it happened. Once the remaining items are removed from the train cars, the stop will automatically reactivate.
### Fueling
Depots also provide an ideal location to fuel the trains and the standard train lengths chosen here mean there are exactly three locations per track where this needs to be done: 1, 5, and 11. The short, reversible trains will need to have their back engines manually fueled but after that will be automatically refueled upon returning to the depot after a reversing stop.
One blueprint depot hub uses a train station to bring in coal that is then belted to the engines. This is an easy starting point when first laying down a train network and can be upgraded to the “depot” version later by removing the conflicting items first.
The other blueprint depot hub uses “requester” chests to get fuel from the logistics network. They request every standard type of fuel (coal, solid, rocket, and nuclear). Near the center of the blueprint, a bit off on its own, is a constant combinator. This defines what fuels are to be requested and how much with the blueprint default being zero (0) for all. Just turn up the desired fuel to the amount to hold, one stack worth usually works well. There is also an “X” number (default=5) that defines the multiplication factor used by the buffer-chest in the very center. The buffer chest requests excess fuel that is then provided to the individual requester-chests when needed, thus reducing the overall storage requirements.
Don’t build new trains in the depot area or manually drive trains there. If a car ends up in front of a fueling chest, the fuel will get loaded into it instead of a locomotive. There are circuits that can prevent this but with the standardized train layout, it’s not a requirement.
## Crossings
Included in the blueprints books are “safe crossings”. These have gates that close when trains are coming and so prevent a player from becoming colored goo on the tracks, mixing with the dust of an automated train. The circuits on these crossings are simple and, while I believe it is impossible to be run over by a train when using them, are not without their idiosyncrasies:
* Waiting next to a closed gate can stop a train from passing. Just back away until it moves on.
* Gates can come up and trap a character on the tracks. That’s okay because the oncoming train will stop in time. Just walk along the track until past the gate and then _quickly_ get off the tracks and move back to the safe side of the gate.
Despite these oddities, the player should be safe.
# Messages
The LTN provides messages for everything it does. The generated deliveries are interesting at first as things get going but after that mostly just hide the important messages. Once things are working, turn off the messages in the mod settings.
# Apparent Inefficiencies
There are a couple things in the designs that may appear to be inefficiencies and thus should be changed.
## Extra Signals on U Chunks
With a single U-turn, there are 3 useless chain signals. However, as soon as a second U junction is placed on top of it to join another track, those signals are essential to support efficient passing of trains in opposite directions. As long as all those signals are there, then two trains can always go past each other so long as their paths don’t cross: They can each keep going straight or one can turn right while the other turns left.
This is especially noticeable on the quad-rail junctions as there are **many** extra signals, all essential in one configuration or another. There’s simply no other way for a junction to be correct both on its own and when joined with ones in other directions than to include all these extra chain signals.
## Extra Signals on H Chunks
The “H” sections of rail have chain signals at their entrances. Since these don’t cross, merge, or split, why not just make them regular signals? “H” chunks are placeholders to create a regular grid where junctions may be desired at a later time. If they were regular signals, then a branch created to the side would be a potential deadlock because trains could come through the regular signal from the original H and stop in the junction at an exit. Placing a chain signal on the H ensures this will never happen.
The chain signal seems an inefficiency since it means an extra length of separation between trains but since trains will have to go through junctions at some point and junctions enforce this same extra length of separation (to prevent deadlocks) then there is really no added inefficiency here.
There are also chain signals along the middle of the “H”. These are necessary, like with the U, to create an efficient working junction if a branch is ever placed going to the side. Without them, trains might not be able to pass in opposite directions even if they don’t cross paths.
# Blueprint Changelog
V4 blueprints are compatible with V3 blueprints. They can extend and join the older designs. They shouldn’t be used, however, to upgrade junctions. That means: Don’t upgrade old 2-track junctions to new 4-track ones, upgrade an old H to opposing new U’s, or otherwise lay the same junction over an existing one. Attempts to do so will show a blueprint conflict. Shift-clicking will create a workable design but with unnecessary signals and lower performance. You can, of course, simply remove all signals before laying the new blueprint.
## V4.19
* Added negative “0” channel amounts for request shortage.
* Set train-limit on depots so trains won’t queue for them.
## V4.18
* Fixed (again) bad signals in 4-track “L”.
## V4.17
* Fixed more bad signals in 4-track “L”.
## V4.16
* Fixed bad signal in 4-track “L”.
## V4.15
* Fixed weird present of two extra tanker cars in 8-tanker blueprint.
## V4.14
* Changed icons for “LTN Support” book so it won’t get completely dropped if mod isn’t installed. Those blueprints can be adapted to non-LTN designs by changing the stops.
## V4.13
* Fixed LTN wiring in depot hubs’ train fuel stations so it works with the “use signals” option.
## V4.12
* Fixed more wiring on train-fed LTN Depot.
## V4.11
* Fixed wiring on train-fed LTN Depot.
## V4.10
* Fixed missing red wires with fuel info on Logistics Depot Hub.
* Fixed some wiring on tanker stations.
* Increased requester “provide” threshold so ovefill can’t change it into a provider.
## V4.9
* Fixed depot blueprints for Factorio 1.1 power lines.
## V4.8
* Restricted LTN network IDs so other networks can co-exist. Stops are ID 255 (bits 0 to 7) and depots are ID 65535 (bits 0 to 15) to cover many options while leaving adequate unused bits for outside definition.
## V4.7
* Fixed green wire in 8-tanker requester
## V4.6
* Fixed wire in updated 8-car provider (left input).
## V4.5
* Improved non-LTN station designs. (see live doc).
## V4.4
* Added support for non-LTN use (see “Life without LTN” in live doc linked at top).
* [Combed](https://mods.factorio.com/mod/power-grid-comb) station electrical wires.
## V4.3
* Changed “average” dividers by one (96 -> 95 for providers, 96 -> 97 for requesters). This eliminates the brief (1-2 items on one lane) stalls that occur at full speed.
* Removed extra rail from 2W U-turn.
* Saved with Factorio v1.1.5. I hope that’s not a problem for those still on 1.0.0.
## V4.2
* changed LTN station limits to use “stacks” instead of absolute amounts
* removed unnecessary chain signals; absolute grid makes them unnecessary
* added grid to double-exit blueprint
## V4.1
* cleaned schedule from player train
* made compatible with LTN “use signals”
* green wire now multiplexed
* add grid to station loops
* fixed alignment of stackers for 4-station loops
## V4.0
* Improved signaling on all “round” junctions lets trains get closer before stopping. Performance improvement is about 15%.
* Improved signalling on station loops also lets trains get closer while waiting and prioritizes moving trains over starting trains so as to not create logjams.
* Added “wide” double-track designs that can be later upgraded to quad-track without having to worry about the new outside track conflicting with existing stations.
* Added “city block” designs for all three rail sizes.
* Widened safe crossings to make it easier to drive vehicles.
* Added (non-LTN) station designs for player train and remote construction sites.
* Added blueprints for the train-rate display seen in my (https://youtu.be/gmV0mkNOkSA).
—–
**===> V3 Blueprints are incompatible with V2 blueprints! Do not mix them! <===** ## [V3.6](http://backgroundexposure.com/files/brians-trains-v3.txt) * Added missing red wire on 4 car provider (right input) * Use the "V3.6" link to get this version. ## V3.5 * Subdivided blueprints into internal books of related designs. * Added missing 2-car to 4-blue requester stations. * Added blueprints for 2-tanker and 4-tanker trains. ## V3.4 * Increased "siding" station track distance from main rail so "requester" stations will fit. * (Also provides better compatibility with "[aux](https://factorioprints.com/view/-M5PZvxZVXEZnmg4V7Hy)" station designs.) ## V3.3 * Fixed quad-rail placeholder so that all signals are present when two are crossed. * Removed unnecessary rails from quad-rail u-turn. ## V3.2 * Added early LTN Depot that fuels engines from a coal train instead of logistics. ## V3.1 * Stretched all station tracks to match new size. * Upgraded quad-rail high-capacity station to make use of new space. Now 15% faster! Sustained rates >42 trains per minute.
## V3.0
* Rebuilt to 110×110 global, “absolute” grid for easier, error-free placement of track.
* Junctions and straights are now the same size.
—–
## [V2.17](http://backgroundexposure.com/files/brians-trains-v2.txt)
* Fixed default request amounts for 2-tanker and 4-tanker requestor stations.
* Use the “V2.17” link to get this version if already started with V2 blueprints.
## V2.16
* Added safe crossings (to avoid getting run over by speeding trains).
## V2.15
* Changed “blue” requestor stations to mesh together when side-by-side.
## V2.14
* Added 2 and 4-car fluid stations
* Tested and saved with Factorio 0.18
## V2.13
* Fixed dead pump and request-amount-cut-off wiring in 8-tanker provider.
* Fixed signals on stub track.
## V2.12
* Added single-car, 2-blue, right-side requestor station.
* Fixed 8-car requestor to have default min train size of 8.
## V2.11
* Removed wall piece mistakenly included in quad-rail to double-rail junction.
## V2.10
* Added additional chain signals to quad-rail double-rail connection so it meshes properly with “placeholder”.
## V2.9
* Added additional chain signals to quad-rail U-turn so it meshes properly with “placeholder”.
## V2.8
* New high-throughput “straight” quad-rail junction… 10% more than v2.7!
## V2.7
* Fixed “X” placeholders in some stations.
* Stretched red and green wire along all rail sections.
* New quad-rail “loop” (upgrade) junction has 60% higher throughput!
* New quad-rail “straight” junction has 25% higher throughput than that!
## V2.6
* Fixed bad rail signal on 3×4+6 loop.
* Fixed bad combinator output on 1-car provider (right input)
## V2.5
* cleaned up tanker stations (removed excess pipe; fixed some wiring; added X to constant combinator)
* fixed some bad blueprint names
## V2.4
* added missing wires to 8-Car Requester (left output)
## V2.3
* removed roboports mistakenly included in a station “loop” blueprint
## V2.2
* updated for Factorio v0.17 (no actual changes were necessary)
* fixes to quad-rail designs (mostly more chain signals)
* fixed inconsistencies between station loop designs
* added text descriptions of designs
* first public release
## V2.1
* added 2-blue-per-car stations
* fixed some small problems such as misplaced signals
* first private release
## V2.0
* added quad-rail designs
* increased junction size to allow both double/quad junctions
—–
## V1.X
* standard chunk-based layout of rails
* fully operational stations, left & right feeds
## V0.X
* initial station designs

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