Wednesday, June 29, 2016

More Slides from Bill Wulfert

Arlington Heights Station Canopy

One of the nice features on the Museum campus is the canopy over the Depot St. carline stop.  This canopy came from the C&NW station at Arlington Heights, and here it is being removed for preservation, in June 1978.

The doomed station as it was when work started.

The roof of the canopy is detached and lifted by a large bulldozer.

And lowered gently to the ground.

Note that only one end of the canopy is original; the other was fabricated by B&G.

The rest of the building was then razed.

Scrapping a Broad St. Car

Back in 1985 IRM acquired two Broad Street subway cars from Philadelphia, one (#55) for preservation and the other (#126) to be scrapped for parts.  Here are some photos from the scrapping of the 126 in 1988.  

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Getting Ready

Traction Weekend will be here soon.   While there will not be a trolley pageant, due to various constraints, we will have several unusual trains running over the three-day weekend, so don't miss it.   In particular, the CA&E abandonment on Sunday, July 3rd, will be bigger and better than ever, as we already mentioned.  Weather and mechanical conditions permitting, we should have seven operating CA&E cars, along with several other trains.

In the morning I started by making the final connections for the four-car wood train, and then tested the control system as best I could by myself.  I also tested the brakes, making sure there are no leaks in the gladhands, and so on.  Once all the motor switches are closed, the train should run fine.

There wasn't much to take a picture of, so let's see what other people are doing.   Max has been working on improving the electrical system in Barn 9, which was recently resided.

 Track 91 has been partially cleared to facilitate this work, and the Zephyr is now on 92.

In Barn 4, Tim continues to work hard on the 24.   The floors of both cabs have been repainted, so they appear to be nearly complete.

And Tim was repainting the exterior.  Later he worked on the roof-mounted destination signs.   It's getting close!

Ed Oslowski continues on the Liner.  He is carefully cleaning off every single heater cover.

And Gerry was working on the brake system for the LSE box trailer, which is nearly complete.

In the 319, the socket for one of the dome lights had broken somehow, so it could no longer hold a bulb securely.   It was effectively like the threads were stripped.

After some work, a replacement socket was installed and tested.  We need to be ready for night operations later this year.

And in my absence, the two new tanks for the 36 have been painted by Rich Schauer, I believe.   Thanks!   I didn't want to try installing them by myself, and I would probably not be able to complete the system by Sunday, so these will have to wait until next week.

And then I did some more lettering in the vestibule of the 36.

And did a lot of cleaning and sorting of parts in the 150, which serves as my storeroom and workshop.  This is actually quite an improvement from its earlier condition.

Coal for the 1630

I had a chance to watch our all-around crane expert Mark Secco at work, as he was running the Museum's antique clamshell crane to load coal in the 1630's tender, and instructing Jeff Calendine in the process.  It's quite interesting.  These videos are a poor substitute for actually being there, but it's the best we can do.   Enjoy!

Standing on top of the tender with Jeff was a great vantage point.  I must admit it was a little scary.  I'm standing up there looking through the viewfinder as this huge clamshell swings towards me.  I started thinking about what to do if it came any closer, but of course Mark knows what he's doing.

Cleaning Up Peoria

You might have thought that Peoria was sort of nice and clean, relatively speaking, and had few problems with corruption and dirt.   You would be wrong -- at least if we're talking about our IT sleeping car.  It recently got moved to Barn 8, and the side now towards the aisle is pretty dirty, because it used to be hidden from public view.

So I started cleaning the windows, at least.  Another pass or two will be needed, but I'm determined to clean up the neighborhood.

A Thought For Today:  (as seen on a visitor's shirt)

Most of my time and money is spent on trains.
The rest is just wasted.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Moving the CTA Collection

The CTA inherited a collection of historic cars and vehicles from CSL, and most of this collection was donated to IRM in July of 1985.  From Bill Wulfert, we have a set of slides showing the cars at the Lawndale station, and the process of moving them to Union.

Car 4

This is a very early single-truck electric car, built by Pullman in 1895.
At Lawndale.

And after arrival at IRM.  It has since been on display in Barn 7.

Car 8
Our horsecar, built by Stephenson in 1859.

Except for a movie appearance, it has been on display in 7 also.

Car 209
This is thought to be a replica built by CSL in 1930 or so of an early cable trailer.

Car 460
A "Big Pullman", built in 1908, and of the same class as our 144.
 At Lawndale.  And next, several views of its progress out of the barn...

And after arrival at IRM: 

In front is the late Bill McGregor, who helped with many such moves for the Museum. 

 Car 4021
 This is the only surviving CSL pre-war PCC.

 Being hauled up a ramp at Lawndale...

And on arrival at IRM:

L to R: Tim (I think), Steve, Dan, and Nick.   Bill is behind the camera.


This one has me stumped.  It appears to be a horse-drawn omnibus, but I don't remember seeing it before and have no idea what happened to it.   Help?

The mail car went to South Elgin, where it is in storage and occasionally displayed.

If you have any questions, just wait for the information bus to drive by.