Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Planning Ahead

Today I did a little more work on the motors; one of them had to be slotted, so I was able to do that during a lull in the rain, using the car mover again. And I cleaned out the air vents.

The barn is still leaking in a couple of places over the 277, so I need to empty out the buckets on the roof every so often. And then there was more sorting and cleaning in the IT cars.

There's no word yet on when the CA&E cars will move, but there's still advance planning to be done.

One project we'll want to start on soon is making new third rail beams for the cars from Trolleyville. The third rail equipments were never installed on any of the cars while they were at Trolleyville, but most of them were saved, and we got 11 sets. The wood is rotted out and unusable, but can be replaced. It's the metal parts that are important. We have a complete set of four beams with the 321's trucks, so they will go under the 319.

A close-up of (L to R) the air-powered sleet scraper, the shoe itself, the 700A fuse, and the cable. Note that the beam has a notch on the back to clear the leaf spring.

I made one replacement beam for the 308 about four years ago, from white oak. It took about a month, but I was doing other things at the same time. Making them in production mode four at a time should be more efficient. The dimensions are 3 1/2" x 5 3/4" x 6' (there's some difference in length depending on the truck.) So they're big and heavy, and it may be a challenge finding a place in the wood shop to store them. Oak isn't available in that thickness, so the replacement beam was made with two 8/4 pieces glued together. There are enough bolts through the wood that the joint can't possibly delaminate.

If you do the math, you'll see that we're five beams short. One car can have beams with no sleet scrapers. During the summer, the CA&E would swap out a set of third rail beams to have the scrapers rebuilt, so sometimes you'll see pictures of a car without sleet scrapers, such as the 321 here. CTA third rail shoes will be close enough.

Finally, here's a sheet from an old Rail & Wire I found while sorting parts. Bruneau used it as scratch paper to list stations for an IT roll sign, but it's an interesting look at the very beginning of the Museum back in 1965. (Note: Franches Crossing is now known as Karsten's.) We really started out with absolutely nothing.

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Kirk Warner said...

Kirkland Lumber will supply white oak, cut to whatever dimensions you need, at a very reasonable price. That is where we bought the wood for the deck on the RI transfer caboose. Kirkland is not far from the museum. The wood is not kiln dired but should work well for you need. We gave them free one day passes as they gave us a good price. We paid around $1600 for all of the decking.

Randall Hicks said...

Thanks for the tip, Kirk, I'll follow up on that!