Wednesday, November 28, 2012

November, 2012 Work Weekend

A few mechanical tasks were addressed on No. 12: a 2" cam-lock water fitting and a 2" cam-lock oil fitting were installed in anticipation of the North Pole Express. The burner was cleaned and returned to service.

While the mechanics were working in the shop, others were finishing the decorations for the North Pole Express.


October, 2012 Work Weekend

The October work weekend was actually the first weekend of the Midwest Haunted Rails. Most of the maintenance was directed at readying the locomotives for use for the three 2-day weekend events.

Before getting into details of what happened around the MCRR's grounds, the photographer experimented with the camera's ability to do panoramic shots. The following picture was taken by standing about 100 yards south of the north station and progressively turning from the north, through the east and finishing facing south.Click on the picture for a larger version.

A typical MHR (Midwest Haunted Rails) day starts with the two steam locomotives pulled out of the shop building by the diesel Plymouth No. 14.

A view of the recently upgraded yard north of the shop.

No. 6 has some steam pressure.

No. 12 sports a few adornments for the event: a pair of horns on its headlight and skulls on the pilot.

Roger R is oiling No. 12's running gear.

Fireman Nathan V at the boiler controls of No. 6.

Engineer Abe C at the throttle of No. 6. (This photo and the one above are also on our facebook page

To set up the audio equipment, Abe C., Eric C., and John G. needed to get into the North Station. Unfortunately they didn't have the correct keys.

A call to Jerry C. had him scurrying to the North Station in his new 4-wheeler.

Abe C and Jerry C are at the controls of the computer and amplifier while Eric tests the microphone.

A view of our all metal caboose.

Too low a fuel flow caused the fire to go out in No. 12 and the subsequent white smoke of unburnt oil.

On another MHR weekend, Elliot H. connected the steam-capable pressure washer to remove lots of ugliness that had built up on the connecting rods of No. 12.

Instead of doing any useful work, Elliot leans on No. 12's cab for the photo.

Eliot working with Rex F. on readying No. 12 for use. Besides oiling the various points in the running gear, there are numerous grease fittings to be filled.

Dave O, his daughter Ashley (center) and her friend carve a few pumpkins in the office.

Engineer Dustin B. at the controls of No. 12.

Fireman Elliot H. at the boiler controls of No. 12.

A spook house character poses in front of a casket in one of the cemeteries.

No. 6 pulls into the North Depot at dusk. The waning sunlight highlights the steam.

No. 12 at the water tower.

Oiling the running gear on No. 6.

Capturing the glow of the firebox on No. 6.

The staff is ready to sell wrist bands to MHR riders.

One of the hanging skeletons in the spook house.

 Conductor Matt dressed in the new MCRR uniform.


Monday, November 19, 2012

September, 2012 Work Weekend

They tell me that some MCRR volunteers were there but there is no photographic evidence of it! It is rather unusual for a full-fledged work weekend to occur one week after the Old Threshers' Reunion.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

2012 Old Threshers' Reunion

The 2012 Old Threshers' Reunion has come and gone. There is a "boatload" of pictures on the main MCRR website (MCRR.ORG) but I've selected a few representative pictures of the days leading up to and including the OTR to give my readers a feeling for what took place during this period.

This is the MCRR's new steam-capable pressure washer. This is something we've needed for years, ever since the old pressure steam washer stopped working.  

 The staff decided to brush the flues on the 12. Wayne P. has a quick rest sitting on the smoke box opening before getting started on the flues.

 John G and Wayne P pull the brush out of a flue. Doing the flues is a dirty job; it is good that these young volunteers like doing it!

Using the new pressure washer, Roger R cleans the smoke stack of the 6. Every year we paint the stack and the years of paint had built up and looked less than perfect. The new pressure washer made quick work of the old paint.

Wayne P and Braden G take a quick break between flues. Why is Wayne so serious and Braden so jovial?

Rex F and Ryan F clean the walls and floor of the shop's pit. It had been quite a while since this was done and it was beyond "ratty!"

We started detailed inspection and repairs of various coaches. Some needed "tweaking" and others simply needed to be inspected to learn that nothing was out of the ordinary. Using the overhead crane, a coach is lifted off its truck. The truck is slid out and each bearing surface is cleaned and lubricated.

While the coaches are getting their inspection, Engineer Dick D pressure washes the 12.

With the stack and smoke box stripped of all its old paint, the crew started applying its new coat. Lindsey R and Wayne P. tackle this task.

The 6's builder's plate was looking weathered, so Engineer Eric C and his son Fireman Andy repainted and buffed it to perfection.

Fireman Elliot H organizes some tools at his new workbench located between the locomotive and tender of the 6. He was completing the installation of the fuel tank heater. A few other blog postings show the progress of the tank heater.

After the contractors completed most of the rebuild of the yard north of the shop, the MCRR's signal system needed to be repaired. The system depends on the rails being electrically linked together. This picture shows the bonding straps being dry welded into place.

Student Fireman John W grinds clag off the rail in anticipation of bonding the rails together.

Two Baldwins.

Conductor and ticket salesman Ken C at the north station.

The 6 chugging up the hill west of the north depot and pulling into the station.

Filling the tender of the 6.

Two Baldwins.

Hahaha...which one has the bigger stream?

Conductor/Student Fireman Ray G awaits the signal for the train's departure.

Student Fireman/Brakeman Steve R fills the forward sand dome.