The most noticeable activity nowadays when you come out on a weekday is all the activity by the contractors on the south yards, and now on the Main Street project. They're still hard at work preparing this first section of the eventual car line.
Notice the dark, ominous clouds to the west. I'm sure you don't want to read more whining about the weather, so let me say that not as much got done today as I would have liked, but the important tasks were accomplished. I wanted to do some switching, but that was delayed by the approaching storm, so instead I helped Pete by fixing the one remaining problem with the control system. We then tested it with the light box, and all is well. Pete still has some air leaks in the brake system to address, and perhaps next week we can actually run the locomotive!
John and Ed were working on the Electroliner, and Jeff and Norm were working on the Michigan 28. One of the few remaining tasks on the LSE freight trailer is to make new side bearings, as seen here, and Gerry and John F. are working on it.
We decided on a new consist for Member's Day, so switching was required. Here's what it looks like as the couplers are being aligned for joining two cars together.
We want to limit the mileage we put on the 309 for a couple of reasons, mostly the motor bearings, so here's a consist we haven't run before: 36, 308, and 319. It all seems to work fine. We will probably drop off the 308 for night operations and run only the 36 and 319 (the "Brookins Limited"!)
One thing we had noticed is that one of the new third rail beams on the 36 was incomplete, and the old fuses were flapping in the breeze. That looks pretty dumb. I installed some parts to hold the fuses in place, since they could not be removed from the frozen bolts on the shoe assembly, and it looks much better.
Well, that's about it for productive work. Let's take a walking tour of the sunny South. The B-71 is indeed now on terra firma, and needs the cables removed that hold the trucks to the frame.
Here's the switch to the new car line extension, which is straight ahead. Yard 15 branches off to the right.
The car line has had ballast dumped all along its length, and now needs to be raised and tamped.
Curving towards the west.
And looking straight west:
Ahead is the sharp curve to the north, where the tracks will parallel Olson Rd.
And we notice that tracks 151 and 152 now have been ballasted.
Looking north along Olson, this is where the car line extension will go next.
And we also have this nice access road alongside Barn 11.
Members' Day this year will, with luck, feature several pieces of equipment that have never run under their own power at Union before, or at least not for more than forty years. We can't make promises, but you can be sure that you will miss a lot if you're not there.