Thursday, May 24, 2012

We're Ready

This report will cover two days of preparation for revenue service. As usual, there was lots going on I didn't get a chance to photograph.

I cleaned up the 309 and 319, checked a few more things, and put the train together.

One thing I wanted to do was to clean and repaint all of the arc chutes on the 309 with Glyptal. This is a "before" picture, I guess I forgot to take an "after". Some were better than others.

In any case, after the locomotive unloading was done, Al and I ran the train outside and back and forth a couple of times to check the brakes, check for leaks, and verify that everything seems to be operating OK. Except the pole filter on my camera.


The Leviathan arrived on Wednesday, along with its caravan of support personnel. The locomotive itself, with its stack, is on one trailer. (L)

The tender is on another trailer, which also includes a small machine shop and a crane for lifting the stack, headlight, and coupler into place. Dave has thought of everything.

To unload, the trailer is lowered and the front part drives away. Then there's a ramp to be connected. You'll have to use your imagination, I was busy elsewhere.

It had to be moved over to the turntable leads to have the stack, pilot, and headlight installed, where there's no trolley wire.

(Photo by Al Reinschmidt)

And here it's being moved into position for loading water. Jamie K. is on the left, Rod is running the engine, and Dave Kloke on the right.

Later, I helped switch it into Barn 2, and got to ride it a little (being pushed cold by the switcher, of course.) But that was fun.

John Faulhaber and Gerry Dettlof are putting new canvas on the cabs of the D-13. It's an unusual design, and the pieces are not very big. This is a piece over a cab extension installed by TM, so it has some weird corners, and there's no tack molding as such.

In the evening I walked over to 14 to check on the 321. Here's part of the sunset as seen from the area near South Junction.


Mostly I worked on seats in the 309. I decided not to try to replace any frames, in case I was unable to complete the project today. But I managed to get a couple of them working much better by adjusting various pieces. There are several different things that can go wrong. Not much to show for this work, except that we'll have some more operating seats. In most cases, you need to push the back in the middle, not just using the handle at the aisle side.

Meanwhile, Al Reinschmidt spent all day painting the 36. He completed the lower siding with a first coat of brown primer, then went back and put a second coat on the first five sectors. It's looking good!

And there's a gap on track 83 that enabled me to take some better pictures of the 972. It looks good, and all those who have been working on the car over the years can be very proud of their efforts! You'll notice that it's now mounted on interurban trucks, so it's higher off the rails. These trucks will enable it to travel at much higher speeds. And our next project will be to equip the car with Van Dorn couplers, so it can train with the CA&E cars. That will be exciting!


Anonymous said...

Re: Milwaukee Electric 972.

I have been reading on the IRM blog about the trucks for 972 being rebuilt (funded by donations to the "Two Milwaukee Streetcar" project). So I'm curious, are the interurban trucks shown here only temporary until the rebuilt trucks can be installed? Just curious what the plan is.

Thank you.

- Lucien O.

David Wilkins said...


I can assure you that Randy's tounge was planted firmly in his cheek when he joked about the 972 being re-trucked and wired for MU with the CA&E cars.

Randy is getting good at the "straight faced fib" which is getting into my professional territory....


Anonymous said...

Ah, thanks David. I usually catch all the humor here, but Randall played that one so straight it got me! :D


David Wilkins said...


As the attorney in the group, I feel like Randall is trying to muscle in on my territory.

Not liking this one bit...


Randall Hicks said...

On the advice of my lawyer, I hereby announce that I will not be posting anything humorous in any way again. Ever. If you don't like it, sue me.

Joe S. said...

The 972 on interurban trucks would make for an interesting ride. I suppose it would be something like the IT 101, with its get up and go. Those trucks under the 972 are actually L trucks, which had previously been under the CWT 141 before its trucks and motors were installed. Nick knows the full history, as those are actually very historic trucks.


Randall Hicks said...

Sorry, I didn't look that close. Are those the trucks that were built by Gilbert for the Intramural line at the Columbian Exposition?

Joe S. said...

Yes, those are the ones.


Anonymous said...

Those trucks came from 2100-series Metropolitan "L" coach trailers (non-control "sinkers"), which were some of the first wooden "L" cars to be retired en masse in the early CTA era.

In a touch of sad irony, a large number of 2100-series trailer carbodies wound up on the ground at Skokie Shops in the 1950s as temporary storage. About five of them lasted into the mid-late 70s, off the ground (on concrete foundations) and bodies still straight. Alas, none were preserved.