Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Greatest Hits of 2014

It's time to pat ourselves on the back as we look over the past year's accomplishments.  Why not?

  • Return of steam at IRM - the 1630 operated all season
  • New track work - the Schmidt Cutoff was constructed, and yards 13 and 14 completely rebuilt and ready for barn construction 
  • New trolley bus wire installed, and power lines extended to the south property
  • Acquisition of our Dodge Inspection Car from the Milwaukee Road
  • Acquisition of two new Chicago L cars (2400's) and completion of the 2200's
  • Dedication of C&WT 141
  • Two Diesels acquired
  • CA&E 36 is now operational, and has been used in revenue service
  • Great progress on the display cars, including the "Women on the North Shore" display (pointed out by Sam P.) 
And our regularly scheduled activities proceeded smoothly and safely, including various social items:
What are we missing here?  Let us know!


Anonymous said...

Hey Randy- 2200s have been here a year and a half already. They arrived July 10th and 11th, 2013. This year's 2200 accomplishment was installation of poles and entry into service- roof work started April 3, 2014, and finished April 18. The cars made their first test trips April 19, and first carried the public May 24. My records show they have operated for the public on 14 days this year. Incidentally, the plans for the 2400s for next year are analogous to the 2200s. Parts for pole installation are all on hand or ordered, and work will begin next spring.
R. W. Schauer

Jeron G said...

Completion of the west trolley bus loop and double-tracking, C&WT 141 dedication, Metra electric snowflake special, storage facility construction and expansion, CTA sign completed and installed, and a couple other items I'm sure I forgot as well.

Randall Hicks said...

Thanks, guys, I guess I got a little confused on the timing for the L cars. And it looks like we somehow missed covering the 141 dedication. Sorry!

Bruce Duensing said...

I guess you folks did have a great year if so many accomplishments were logged that it's difficult to remember them all.

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year to you and all the others at IRM who work so hard to make the museum a better place to tell the history of American railroading.

Ted Miles
IRM Member for 2015

Chris said...

I've seen the tediousness of line work at another museum. If there is help, there's not much they can do without being in their own bucket. That's a crazy amount of work for one person for two years, at least on volunteer time. But track work and wire work is supposed to be invisible. Unlike cars looking shinier over time. Am I right?

Chris said...

Where's Max's comment? I thought it was pretty good. Now mine makes no sense.

Randall Hicks said...

Well, I don't know what happened to it. Here's what Max had to say:

After two years of work by Max Tyms the trolley bus West Loop is in service including double wire. High voltage power lines were extended 1/4 mile to the South property line along Olson Rd. These will service the new barns on the South property. Two transformer banks were installed to service barns 12,13,14 and 15. All this accomplished by one dedicated volunteer with only sporadic help. It saves the museum thousands of dollars. Have my efforts become invisible in IRM's vast infrastructure?

Keeping the lights & traction power on for 35 years.
M. Tyms

Max Tyms said...

Chris, I had a helper. Calb Hoppkins (Hoppi). He passed away several years ago. He once told me; "We can work all weekend rebuilding a pole and after we're done someone would say it was always like that." But new things should be noticed and the volunteers' efforts acknowledged. There is a great deal of groundwork to do supporting the guy in the bucket. Hence the term "line crew". I spend more time on the ground prepareing things than I do in the bucket installing them. As for West Loop, there was a huge amount of shop work involving the reconditioning of old parts. Randall, thanks for publishing my comments. It seems I am blackballed from Rail & wire and IRM List.
Max Tyms

Brian J. Patterson. said...

Hello, all.

1. Congrats to a (fairly) great 2014, Max! I say "fairly" because we couldn't raise the match on the Solar Plant. With the new governor, there will likely be no grant to go after now, at least from Illinois.

2. But the trolley bus loop is ready for revenue service, the south barns are ready to get electric power, and you cleaned up last fall and winter's storm damage before the start of the spring operating season. Not shabby at all.

3. Few of think to "look up" unless we're working on something that has to GO up. That is actually the ultimate tribute to your skill and dedication. We can trust that if you put it up, that it will STAY THERE short of an act of God.

4. You still "own" half of the TITLE to the Museum Members' Magazine even if you feel like you can't put anything IN it. "Rail and Dash-8 Pulling PCC's Around the Trolley Loop" just doesn't have the same ring to it. 8-P Your wire does look great over the trolley bus on the Winter 2014 Cover in any case.

5. Congrats to all of us and each other for a safe and great 2014. Let's make 2015 even better.

Brian J. Patterson.

Max Tyms said...

Brian, I never thought of Rail & Wire that way. That's a good point, thank you. Maybe the name of the publication should be Rail & busses? Since they don't talk about wire work at all.
Max Tyms