Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Another Palimpsest

When I arrived in the morning, Bob Olson was hard at work unloading rails we got from Chicago Heights in a special deal of some sort.  These will be used on the main line and in yard 15.  If you look closely, you can see him running the big forklift.

The major remaining part of the 36's vestibule that needed preparation was the inside of the train door.   I removed the hardware for cleaning with a putty knife and wire brush.   If Bill Wulfert were helping me, these would probably get done better, but they're just going to be painted again, so this is good enough.

With the hardware in place, the yet-to-be-painted door looks like this.

"Palimpsest" is a Greek word: "palin" means again and "psestos" means scraped or sanded.  In ancient times, parchment was valuable, and old documents would sometimes be reused by sanding or scraping off the original writing and relettering it.  Unfortunately, valuable writing, such as a lost play of Aeschylus, might be replaced by something of much less interest.  So scholars can have years of fun trying to decipher the original writing on a palimpsest.

Having said that, I have a palimpsest door for you right here.  There's no real doubt as to what the original writing said, but it's nice to have it show up clearly.   The car number at the top of the door is exactly the same for both the black and the earlier gold lettering:

But the warning message down the side is located differently.   In the first picture, after just a little sanding, the gold lettering can barely be seen:

But after more sanding, it's clear enough to trace.  Now if anybody has some old parchments lying around, I'm ready to start working my magic on them.

When the 319 was painted back in 2010, there was some red overspray on one of the train door windows, as perhaps you can see here, although photography is difficult.  Not a major problem, but just enough to be irritating.  None of the other windows on the car had this problem.

So I brought out some chemical stripper, and after a little work, it's gone.  

Back in the 36, the train door and a few other areas in the vestibule were painted with primer.  Everything except the floor now has primer, and next time it will all be painted blue.   All that's left is lettering, and the car will be ready for revenue service this year.

Let's visit the 24 while Tim is busy back in the shop.

Under one of the long "bowling alley" seats, we see the triple valve, and also a Van Dorn link.

The interior is a very fancy design, but especially for a rapid transit car these bulbs sticking out of the ceiling and the many straps hanging from a slender wooden rod are just asking for trouble, it would seem to me.  Trainmen will have to watch the passengers closely.

Looking in through the doorway at the small motorman's cab.

And through a window in the bulkhead at the large motorman's cab.

John Arroyo is working hard on the Electroliner.  New window sills are being made and fitted.

And the window frames are being repaired and refinished.   It'll be beautiful.

Speaking of ancient parchment, that's what these fragile old blueprints from the Dayton trolleybus system look like.  Rich Schauer was carefully laying them out, hoping we can decode some useful information from them.  Good luck!

And after the primer was dry, or at least tack-free, I did some more second finish blue in the vestibule.  These vestibules are tiny, so photography is difficult, and you will have to see it for yourself.  

Finally, the east wall of Barn 9 is complete, and the contractor is working on the south end.


Joel Ahrendt said...

The only thing you missed, is that in the evening the CTA shop crew finished the inspection on the CTA 41. They had to replace the 600 volt cable that allows the 22 to be trainlined off of the car. The old one was close to going blam... which is why we inspect the cars every year to catch these things and fix them.

Anonymous said...

On the old CRT, did the small motormen work the south runs and the big motormen work the north runs, or was it the other way around? I don't recall learning of cars turning around until later CTA years, so I figured that not having two sets of proportionate fellows was an early cost savings in implementing newer equipment.

Randall Hicks said...

Joel: I left before the night crew got there, of course. But it's good to know they're at work: we certainly would not want the bus line cable to go "blam", would we?

As for the gate car, the larger cab originally held the compressor, but the same size motorman as the other. I noticed that anyone of average or greater height either has to be seated or bend down in order to see straight ahead.

Anonymous said...

Just don't flop on the seats.