Saturday, May 2, 2015

Spring Into Action

 It was a beautiful spring day out at the Museum, and lots of things were going on, as usual.  And we had a good crowd of visitors, it seemed.  Since it's now May, we have regular service on Saturdays, and so there were three revenue trains in operation: the Diesel coach train, two 4000's, and a streetcar.  This is sort of minimal service for us, but most railroad museums seldom have more than one train in operation.  There's nothing quite like IRM.

OK, self, stop preaching.  We've got work to do! 

I finished putting a coat of gloss black on the tack molding on the other side of the 319, and the #1 end.  It looks like this. 

The roof on the 319 is essentially complete, so it was time to start on the 36.  I want to repaint the exterior this summer, so the logical place to start is the roof.  The 36 still has an original Wheaton roof job, and has been stored inside since about 1962, so it's in pretty good shape.   I am not ready to start on another complete roof replacement project!

In order to get the scaffold in between the 36 and the 308 for storage, I had to move the 36 a couple of feet west, but no more than absolutely necessary.

The paint is flaking off the woodwork on the clerestory and the upper tack molding, so I started sanding it down a little and putting a coat of primer on the wood.  The main object here is to make everything a nice shiny black to match the roof on the 319.

Later I worked on the 150 some more, sorted parts and tools, and did some testing on light circuits in the 308, without much success.  Luckily we don't need working interior lights for revenue service, for the most part.


 And then I started putting some more blue paint in the vestibule of the 36, until I ran out of time.

This is inspection season, of course.  Today it was the 4391 being inspected by Joel and Rich.  When PCC's first appeared they were sometimes derided as looking like an inverted bathtub, but even your bathtub needs to be inspected once in a while.

Here's the truck.

And the rotary accelerator.

And Tim is starting to install the new ceiling panels in the 24.  Pretty smooth!  And Buzz is repainting the end of the UP turbine; I should have gotten some pictures but didn't.

 And there was a lot of switching.  I happened to notice our big Baldwin center-cab in motion.  Maybe I should have taken some video instead.  It was later put on display on the connector track.

So the moral of this story is that if you really want to see what's going on, you have to be there in person. 

By the way, there are two large steam locomotives - Reading 2100 and N&W 2156 - that should be passing through our area, or at least through Illinois, in the next week or two.  As usual, it's impossible to predict exactly when or where the moves will take place.  But I would love to get pictures from anybody who's lucky enough to see them.  You can have your name in genuine pixels right here!


Anonymous said...

Wow, I don't recall that raggetty wood insulated boxcar inthe background, behind the MNS engine. What's the story?

Randall Hicks said...

I don't know the specifics, but a lot of the decrepit freight cars that were in 13 and 14 are being switched around in advance of barn construction.

Kirk Warner said...

The insulated boxcar contains material for the steam department. It was requested that the freight car department restore the car; however, the car is too far gone and the request was declined. The structural steel side sills have rusted out and the roof has failed.

Kirk Warner

TIm Fennell said...

Car is URTX 5348; built by GATX in 2/41; lettered for lessee Morris Rifkin & Son. Portions of the roof have been failing since at least 2008 when i started regularly photographing it and a large section was gone by 2011. The car had a unique aesthetic, being the only reefer on the property with wood ends (others have Dreadnaught steel ends).