And then there was the truss rod on the L side of the 36, which I'd chipped for only about half its length at some point. This is the "before" view of the turnbuckle, which is a different style than the hexagonal cross-section ones used on the other cars. In the background is the car's trusty D3-EG air compressor.
So what else was happening? Well, here's something exciting. Thomas Slater, who volunteers with the "modern 'L' car" contingent, has designed and brought out a 3D printed prototype for a replacement handle for new-style ball-valve cut-out cocks. Our cars have tons of these cut-outs built with tapered valve bodies, so when they start leaking they're almost impossible to get lapped again. We've had to replace a couple with modern valves (like the one on the left in the above photo). The biggest problem with those is that the handles are these ugly sheet-metal things. So Thomas has designed a handle that looks like the old cast ones but will mate with the modern valve bodies. A plastic prototype is in the middle of the photo. To the right is a reverse key he designed using the same process, but this was 3D printed in brass (!) instead of plastic. The plan is to build a fabricate a few cut-out cock handles in brass to replace the sheet metal ones on our cars. The wonders of modern technology!
And say, what's that big silver loaf of bread-looking thing over in Yard 3? Why, it's the museum's newest acquisition, Western Pacific 801, better known as the "Silver Beaver." No snide remarks, now. This baggage car was built in 1948 for the California Zephyr as part of the WP's contribution to that train. I think it's the first piece of WP equipment at IRM though I could be mistaken on that. Anyway, this car was acquired in place of the scrapped "Olympus," a baggage car commonly assigned to our own Nebraska Zephyr, and just recently arrived in Union. Once it gets fixed up it may make the occasional appearance between the E5 and the "Minerva" but we'll have to see.
In other news, Norm Krentel and some guy from Ohio were doing more metal work on the Michigan Electric car, while the regular "L" car contingent was working on some trouble-shooting on the spam cans. I even got to ride along on a test trip and gawk at a current meter hooked up to the motors which showed how much current was being pulled at any given time. Interesting stuff!