Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Almost There

Frank writes...

I was able to take a day off work on Wednesday to head out to IRM and help my father with inspection duties.  The primary focus of our efforts was the 308, which along with the 319 will make up the service train for Memorial Day.  My father did much of the inspection work though I helped with some work on the contactors and with lubricating the motor armature bearings, which is always a challenge given their difficult-to-reach location.

Afterwards we needed to wye the 308 so we took it down to South Junction, pausing for a photo stop en route, and back up the connector track.  While traversing the junction we noticed that one of the grid boxes had an element that was arcing a bit.  We very nearly got the car back into the barn but the grid element opened up about 200' short of the door.  Fortunately we had a bright red tow truck in the form of the 319 waiting just inside the barn, so we ran it out and towed the 308 back in.  We should be able to install a temporary fix to the grid box to buy ourselves time to assemble a replacement box.  A few other minor things still need to be done but the 308 and 319 are very nearly ready for service.
There were others hard at work too.  Norm and Jeff were working on the Michigan Electric car, Rod was switching, and Gerry was working on the Milwaukee Electric dump motor shown above.  The roofs over both cabs have been rebuilt and now work is concentrating on restoring the car's original wiring.

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