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Just saw a news story that NS is going to close most of the huge classification yard in Bellevue, Ohio. Here's what went on in Bellevue many years ago, from page 36 in my book...

3rd Trick in Bellevue, Ohio, June 18, 1957

IT’S A LITTLE PAST MIDNIGHT at the Nickel Plate Road roundhouse in Bellevue, Ohio. It’s a warm summer night with a gentle breeze out of the south. Even though it’s late, no one is sleeping here! NKP Berks 766, 779, 751, and  707 all await their next call to duty. The hostlers have cleaned the fires, filled the coal bunkers, topped off the  tender water tanks, and spotted the engines on the ready tracks in front of the roundhouse. When they leave town, each of these Berks will have several thousand tons of freight behind it. By sunrise, they will all be a hundred miles or more away from Bellevue, on their way to Buffalo or Chicago.

This dramatic photo was taken by Don Wood and comes from the John B. Corns Collection.

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@Apples55 posted:

... amazing pictures which give an incredible insight into just how massive the 765 is!!!

How big is the 765? Try this on for size...

Mark St. Aubin poses next to one of the pistons and rods from the 765. Now imagine that huge piston and rod moving back and forth in the cylinder several times per second when the 765 is running fast!

This comes from page 156 in the book.

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Last edited by Rich Melvin

Greg and Kevin, things have changed a little since I wrote that the reply about signing books in Fort Wayne. I am climbing the learning curve on this process too, and I recently learned about another way that I can sign a book for you.

Kevin, if you have not yet ordered your book, there is a way we can do this. You can specify a different shipping address for the book when you order. If you send it to me, I will sign it and then send it on to you.

CLICK HERE to email me directly for my address. I do not want to publicize my home address here on the forum. In that email, provide the address where the book should be sent after I sign it.

There ya go!

Last edited by Rich Melvin

"Horsepower at Speed"  was Lima's catch phrase for their modern steam locomotive design philosophy. Here's a great example.

The "2765" (NKP 765 in disguise) is roaring through Lowellville, Ohio, at 60+ mph, with twenty-nine cars behind her! It takes a lot of horsepower to do that.

From page 140 in my book, the caption reads:
"No matter which way the '2765' was headed, she was usually going fast! Highballin’ eastbound through Lowellville, Ohio on the former B&O main (now CSX), the 2765 shows the classic sign of a steam locomotive running at high speed. At 60 mph the wind lays the smoke back flat against the top of the train."

Dorothy Ruhlman took this dramatic photo.

Get  your copy of my book here.
Profits go to the continued upkeep and maintenance of the 765.

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Hey Rich, funny you posted that. Last week(which I didn't get a chance to comment here about) a friend was telling me she was out in Ohio and heard trains. I said whistles or horns, she said horns maybe, wasn't sure. So I sent her a video to clear that up. Well, was horns, but she prefers steam. So I looked up a video for her. Found(which is copyrighted) NKP 765 travelling at 70 MPH. I believe the video was posted back in 2016. Man that engine is hauling. That has got to be something else. Every steam engine I have had the pleasure of traveling on has been short lines and rather slow.

The sound of a steam locomotive going fast is a sound not heard in this country today. This short clip, produced by steamtrainvideos.com, captures this dramatic sound very well.

This 70 mph clip opens with the whistle sounding in the distance. When the whistle stops, there are several seconds where the extremely fast pace of the exhaust can be heard before the whistle sounds again. Truly amazing! But this is what the NKP Berks were designed to do . . . run fast with a heavy train.

Yeah, that is the video Rich. My friend was in awe, as all of us should be. Seeing something like that move is indeed a rare thing, especially at that speed with a load behind it. Last year when 611 was up at Strasburg, I talked with a few of the crew while waiting. One of them remarked to one of the other folks waiting about how they brought it up, the slowness because of I think they said insurance and other such things. They remarked as well how 611 wasn't even working hard to pull the cars there, and how there was only one place that they could open it up(I think home turf). Truly something remarkable to see. Wish I could have made it out to see 765 do all the things it did with you at the helm, but alas.

@Rich Melvin posted:

The sound of a steam locomotive going fast is a sound not heard in this country today. This short clip, produced by steamtrainvideos.com, captures this dramatic sound very well.

This 70 mph clip opens with the whistle sounding in the distance. When the whistle stops, there are several seconds where the extremely fast pace of the exhaust can be heard before the whistle sounds again. Truly amazing! But this is what the NKP Berks were designed to do . . . run fast with a heavy train.

Too bad that guy didn't set up his camera where there were no grade crossings, in order to REALLY hear that Lima Super Power exhaust (with the famous Baker valve gear 'Lima Gait'). 

@Rich Melvin posted:

I agree, Jack. I've scoured the net for videos of the 765 at high speed without a lot of whistling, with little success. This is the best one I've found so far. Of course, there are a lot of grade crossings on the Metra line, so that's part of the problem.

Same here, really good videos are hard to find. I seem to remember a fellow from the Chicago area took, and posted, some videos along the old Rock Island line out to Joliet. He parked in some industrial/office complex in the Mokena area, where there are very few grade crossings. She sounded really nice at 70+ from that track-side video (I have visited that area twice to watch her go by, enroute to downtown Chicago). Can't remember where I saw it,,,,,,,maybe Trainorders.com?

Things seem to be a bit disorganized with the U.S. Postal Service when it come to packages. My copy of the 765 book was shipped from Ohio in the 22nd, went to a Des Moines, Iowa "Distribution Center", and no telling where it is now. Can't imagine why the USPS would bypass Chicago completely, when we live in the Chicago suburbs. Oh well, maybe it will arrive this Saturday.   

Regarding USPS - since the Covid-19 crisis hit in March 2020 many USPS packages have been delayed. Most only take 1-2 days longer on average but if it is Media Mail (commonly used for books and video) most of those take about 4-5 weeks longer than normal to be delivered. Estimated delivery date for Media Mail means nothing these days.

I sent two packages to same address in New Jersey - one was First Class Package, other was Media Mail. Both went from Indiana to NJ with normal transit time with the Media Mail one one day behind the First Class. Once they got to USPS center in Jersey City that's where the fun started. First Class kept moving and was delivered two days later. Media Mail package just sat there for almost four weeks before it moved 4.5 miles to USPS Kearney hub. Once in Kearney it got delivered two days later.

Almost all of my Media Mail packages enroute to me have been delayed 3-5 weeks on average. None have been lost so far - they all arrive eventually in excellent condition. I understand USPS is short on personnel plus moving packages depends on available capacity which is reduced thanks to Covid-19. Media Mail is moved on a non-time sensitive basis when space is available although being delayed for weeks in the system seems excessive.

I sure hope these NKP 765 books are not being sent Media Mail. The small extra cost for First Class package or Priority Mail is well worth it these days as Media Mail is extremely slow nowadays!

@645 posted:

Regarding USPS - since the Covid-19 crisis hit in March 2020 many USPS packages have been delayed. Most only take 1-2 days longer on average but if it is Media Mail ... most of those take about 4-5 weeks longer than normal to be delivered. ... Media Mail package just sat there for almost four weeks before it moved 4.5 miles to USPS Kearney hub.

Uh-oh. I've been sending these books from here (the ones I signed) via Media Mail. I didn't know about the big delays on that. I won't do that any more. Thanks 645.

I don't think Ingram (Aerio) sends them via Media Mail. The books I signed have arrived here at the house within 4-5 days of the order.

Curious question about coal Rich, I would imagine that most if not all coal docks, coal towers and such are gone. I know the small railroad downtown by me they use a frontend loader or some small equipment or such. They have a cinder block wall where they house the coal. I have no idea on how they pop water in either, but suspect the odd thing on the pole may be how. I'd get a picture, but with them still being locked down, very unlikely I'd be let into the parking lot for a photo. I'll have to see if I have one on my hard drive at home.

@WB Trainman posted:

Rich, I just ordered your book.  If possible, could you please autograph it for me?  thank you very much

I would be happy to! Did you have it shipped to me for signing?

These are print-on-demand books that are shipped direct from the printer to you (or me, if you've set it up that way.)  I do not have a stock of books here to sign.

Last edited by Rich Melvin

WB Trainman, I'm sorry. I didn't get back on the forum to see this post until this morning. Let's hope Aerio responds properly.

If they don't send the book to me first, we may still have a way to do this. The Lovely and Gracious Linda and I are planning some fall travel in October. We'll be on the I-81 corridor for many miles. Maybe we can set up a meet then and I can sign your book in person.

Ah, thanks for the correction, Rich. I was trying to remember how fast 765 was allowed to run (with passengers). And sort of guesstimating based on how long it took for a car to go by....Don't want to clog up the thread - have a video from the same weekend, shot from an overpass in Altoona as the train heads for Horseshoe Curve - only 15 or 20 mph, but sharp exhaust bark. Three or four diesels running light heading in the other direction.

EDIT: Well, decided to post the Altoona video. Thanks again for the correction later in this thread, Rich.

Will order the book soon. EDIT - have ordered the book now. Should be excellent.

David

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@Rich Melvin posted:

WB Trainman, I'm sorry. I didn't get back on the forum to see this post until this morning. Let's hope Aerio responds properly.

If they don't send the book to me first, we may still have a way to do this. The Lovely and Gracious Linda and I are planning some fall travel in October. We'll be on the I-81 corridor for many miles. Maybe we can set up a meet then and I can sign your book in person.

That would be great, Rich.  Do let me know when you are in the area and I will try to get the book to you as well as meet you in person.  Aerio has unfortunately already shipped the book. Until then!

Last edited by Rich Melvin

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