Tuesday, July 23, 2019

July, 2019, Work Weekend

First, a treat for those anxious about Shay No.9.

The staff has been returning No.9 back to running condition for its debut at the 2019 Old Threshers' Reunion. No.9 last ran late in 2018 at the Georgetown Loop Railroad. The GLRR staff did their year-end "pickling" of No.9, stored it over winter, and then readied it for shipment to Mt. Pleasant. We are putting the locomotive back together and replacing some of the West Side Lumber treatments that were impeading Federal Railroad Administration certification or simply unnecesary for use at the GLRR.

The focus of the work weekend required that No.9 was not in the way, so it was set outside the shop to graze near the flagpole. Not to be outshone, both CyZ No.1 and No.D9 photobombed this shot of No.9.

One of the short yellow coaches had its roof trashed just before the 2018 OTR, having been outside when a storm hit Mt. Pleasant. At the last work weekend and over the Independence Day weekend, the staff removed and prepared the coach roof for an ethylene propylene diene terpolymer (EPDM) rubber roof. The next few pictures show Ryan J., Sean B., Micah M., Elliot H., and Melissa B. applying the adhesive to the substrate and roofing material, and then sticking the material in place.

Melissa B. and Wayne P. remove the old roof from another victim of the 2018 storm. The EPDM roof will be installed in mid August.

While the coaches were being re-roofed in the shop, Brad T., Alex M., and Joan M. worked on the water tower roof, getting pieces fitted for the construction of the roof. These pictures were taken in the roof "workshop" but the building of the roof will take place on-site at the North Depot.

The next group of pictures depict various scenes around the railroad during the work weekend.

Memories are hazy; either sometime in 2017 or 2018 we traded several simple steam powered air compressors for a "rough" ballast tamper. We sent the tamper off-site to be renovated. While it still looks rough, the tamper has two new engines, all new hoses, new bearings, and a host of overhauled parts.

Kendall O. and Konnor S. refurbished our "rubble cart" with a new frame and decking, overhauled bearings and other metal parts. The cart was painted and lettering applied to match what would have been present while at Argent Lumber Company.

Dusitn B. and Matt W. discuss what will be placed on the pit track after No. 9 was removed.

Lee R. and Rex F. were busy with repairs to the east main crossing gate. Here, they were looking through a supply cabinet for some electrical fittings.

Sean B. blended the settled solids of a 5 gallon container of roofing adhesive.

Dustin B. returns from the east main gate with a trenching machine which was used to bury the electrical pipes.

A work weekend isn't complete without the Vulcan Iron Works gasoline switch engine, Frederick Snare Corp's No. 2.

Pictures courtesy steam.airman, Lauren B, Wayne P.

Monday, July 22, 2019

June, 2019, Work Weekend (under construction)

May, 2019, Work Weekend (under construction)

April, 2019, Work Weekend (under construction)

March, 2019, Work Weekend (under construction)

February, 2019, Work Weekend (under construction)

(This is really bad; no pictures!)

January, 2019, Work Weekend (under construction)

December, 2018, North Pole Express (under construction)

November, 2018, Work Weekend (under construction)

October, 2018, Midwest Haunted Rails (under construction)

September, 2018, Midwest Haunted Rails Setup (under construction)

August-September 2018 Old Threshers' Reunion

This post covers the 2018 Old Threshers Reunion, starting a week before and ending the day after the Reunion.


Getting No.12 ready for service for the year includes separating the tender from the locomotive. Once the separation is complete, the draw bar is removed, pressure washed, and magnafluxed. Presuming the visual and magnetic inspections are nominal, the draw bar is replaced, and the tender is joined to the locomotive. Dale F. and Roger R. connect the flexible hoses and chains between the two units.

No.D9's return-to-service project requires that all components are functional. Here, its air compressor is removed from a flatcar for inspection by one of our volunteers.

No.12's boiler and tender are filled with water for hydrotesting.


Dom H. and Roger R. polish some bearing journals in anticipation of the axle's insertion into a coach truck. Matt W. takes over from Dom as machinist to complete the journal polishing. With the polishing complete, a large group of volunteers prepare to remove a worn out axle set from a coach truck and replace it with the refurbished axles set.

Ryan J. and Kendall O. prepare to power wash No.12.

Dale F. and Allen F. begin their annual clean-up of No.6.

Starting in January, 2018, No.6's cab and much of the external plumbing was completely revised, including installation of two Nathan "Monitor" injectors. After wrapping the steam lines with insulation, labels were attached near each valve.


Dom H. prepares the site for a mechanical lubricator on the front of No.6. Evan P. assists Allan F. in the installation of the linkage that will drive the lubricator.

Several people install a whistle and linkage of No.6.

Having missed the group lunch, Dustin looks for his sandwich in one of several likely places.

After a thorough power wash, Dave does some investigations on No.D9's aircompressor and declares it in need of much attention.

The next few pictures were taken from the manlift's basket. This signal had a silent bell which was caused by a large nest built by some energetic insects within the gong.

Rex F. repairs the crossbucks from one of the gates.


A big storm came through on Tuesday night, two days before the start of the 2018 Reunion. During the storm, power went out for several hours, and many inches of rain fell. The next few pictures give an idea of the havoc brought to the park.

While some of us were savoring the havoc, John K., Allan F., and Dale F. continue work on No.6.

Several coaches were outside when the storm hit and several coaches lost their roofing! Roger R., Paul K., and Brian B. attempt to fix the roofing but to no avail. The roofs leaked and were scheduled for replacement in 2019.


No.6 stops at the North Station.

Matt C. running No.12.

No.6 coming into and leaving South Station.

The train's Security Staff followed by the train crew's conductors and brakeman.

Various pictures from around the railroad.

pictures by steam.airman
Lauren B.