Canadian National 6218 Back To Operation??? Could It Work????

Rusty Traque posted:
BobbyD posted:
Firewood

Went to see the Zephyr at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, wonderful, takes you back to when it was brand new and an amazing sight to see for everyone. It would have been a spectacular display to have the Santa Fe 2903 parked beside it and "running" in place. I feel that would have been quite the experience for kids of all ages to see those drivers rotating, an imitation fire inside her, and some "Chuffs" during tours. Sadly that is not the case.  

"It's still a sight to behold," Grainger said of the train. "It just seemed like the right project for us, to restore it so new generations can appreciate the train and the story behind it. " http://articles.chicagotribune...ne-art-deco-design/2  

When 2903 was at MSI, there once was a button to push to get the drivers to rotate one revolution. 

Rusty

Rusty, you are close, but the engine from which the working drive train came from was a C&EI (Chicago & Eastern Illinois) Atlantic 4-4-2. Your memory is correct in that you could push a button and view the moving components of the drive, pretty cool actually.

However, this display was recently sold at auction to an unknown (to me) buyer. I would like to know where it wound up. It would be nice if it wound up at IRM, but I suspect we would have heard if that was the case.

If you do any digging and find the new owner please share with us

Charlie

Charlie posted:Rusty, you are close, but the engine from which the working drive train came from was a C&EI (Chicago & Eastern Illinois) Atlantic 4-4-2. Your memory is correct in that you could push a button and view the moving components of the drive, pretty cool actually.  However, this display was recently sold at auction to an unknown (to me) buyer. I would like to know where it wound up. It would be nice if it wound up at IRM, but I suspect we would have heard if that was the case.

If you do any digging and find the new owner please share with us

Charlie

I believe it went to the B&O RR Museum.

Charlie posted:
Rusty Traque posted:
BobbyD posted:
Firewood

Went to see the Zephyr at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, wonderful, takes you back to when it was brand new and an amazing sight to see for everyone. It would have been a spectacular display to have the Santa Fe 2903 parked beside it and "running" in place. I feel that would have been quite the experience for kids of all ages to see those drivers rotating, an imitation fire inside her, and some "Chuffs" during tours. Sadly that is not the case.  

"It's still a sight to behold," Grainger said of the train. "It just seemed like the right project for us, to restore it so new generations can appreciate the train and the story behind it. " http://articles.chicagotribune...ne-art-deco-design/2  

When 2903 was at MSI, there once was a button to push to get the drivers to rotate one revolution. 

Rusty

Rusty, you are close, but the engine from which the working drive train came from was a C&EI (Chicago & Eastern Illinois) Atlantic 4-4-2. Your memory is correct in that you could push a button and view the moving components of the drive, pretty cool actually.

However, this display was recently sold at auction to an unknown (to me) buyer. I would like to know where it wound up. It would be nice if it wound up at IRM, but I suspect we would have heard if that was the case.

If you do any digging and find the new owner please share with us

Charlie

Nope, there was a button to run a motor to move the drivers on the 2903.  I recall pressing it several times just to watch things move. 

This was WAAAAY back in the 1970's.  I was there with a contractor friend (checking pigeon traps) before the museum opened for the day, we spent a good half hour hanging around the 2903.

Rusty

Brody,  I got a big kick out of your map of Fort Wayne's Lawton Park/ Fourth Street / Clinton Street area.  You show the route how the NKP 767 was moved across the street and onto live rail.  It is a pretty good representation of how that happened.  As a surveyor (then) and one of the original board members of the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society, Inc., it fell to me to figure out how to get the locomotive across the street.  Fourth Street was a minor street so it was no big deal to close it for about 8 hours.  Lost in the reporting is the fact that the return to service of NKP 759 in 1968-1973 was the inspiration that it was indeed possible to bring a mainline steam locomotive back from "the dead".  Up until that time, all mainline steam was still an "extension" of locomotives that were never really retired, like the CN 6218, UP 8444, RDG 4-8-4's, Burlington steam, and even Southern 4501- out of service for two years between the K&T and Paul Merriman.  NKP 759 was out of service from 1958-1968, a full decade.  So it was the first one to be brought back from the grave and the second one was the Daylight 4449 in 1975 after nearly twenty years.  The 765/767 was brought back from the grave after 21 years.  It is hard to believe that it is now 38 years since the 765 began her second career.  

Yep.  I don't know how long it lasted, but there was a panel by the cylinders on the engineer's side that had the button to rotate the drivers on the 2903. The locomotive was lifted ever so slightly off the rails.

Standing inches away from all that machinery in motion is something not easily forgotten.

I also remember the operating display inside, by a west wall near the Pennsy cab.

As I said, this was the 1970's when I was there.  I would guess the first time it broke down was the last time it broke down and was removed.

Rusty

Rusty Traque posted:

Yep.  I don't know how long it lasted, but there was a panel by the cylinders on the engineer's side that had the button to rotate the drivers on the 2903. The locomotive was lifted ever so slightly off the rails.

Standing inches away from all that machinery in motion is something not easily forgotten.

I also remember the operating display inside, by a west wall near the Pennsy cab.

As I said, this was the 1970's when I was there.  I would guess the first time it broke down was the last time it broke down and was removed.

Rusty

Well, that is very interesting. I have been going to the museum since the early 70's, but I was a little kid. Seeing the drivers of the "inside" engine move were pretty cool, but seeing the massive drivers of the 2903 must have been something to, especially since you could view the motion so close.

Funny you should mention the PRR K4 cab, that was also sold along with the C&EI demo unit mentioned earlier as well as some of the other small engines. Some were original and some were reproductions from many years ago.

Charlie

NKP779 posted:

Brody,  I got a big kick out of your map of Fort Wayne's Lawton Park/ Fourth Street / Clinton Street area.  You show the route how the NKP 767 was moved across the street and onto live rail.  It is a pretty good representation of how that happened.  As a surveyor (then) and one of the original board members of the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society, Inc., it fell to me to figure out how to get the locomotive across the street.  Fourth Street was a minor street so it was no big deal to close it for about 8 hours.    

I guess you can further thank Kelly Lynch because I got my information from Listen For The Whistle. All I did was draw on a Google Maps screenshot.

Rusty Traque posted:

Yep.  I don't know how long it lasted, but there was a panel by the cylinders on the engineer's side that had the button to rotate the drivers on the 2903. The locomotive was lifted ever so slightly off the rails.

Standing inches away from all that machinery in motion is something not easily forgotten.

I also remember the operating display inside, by a west wall near the Pennsy cab.

As I said, this was the 1970's when I was there.  I would guess the first time it broke down was the last time it broke down and was removed.

Rusty

Sad to have missed that. Seeing the 2903 cosmetically restored at the museum with moving running gear would be spectacular. As with all museums, guests are at the mercy of current and past curators. While many do not like the loss of train items, at least this museum has sold items at auction to all for the highest bid and ensures transparency of the sales. Sadly some do not, having instead "tent sales" and such for locals, which is not the way to get the most money for items.

Hey Brody - there's a relatively new thread (started August 14, 2017) over on RYPN that discusses the 6218's current condition including mention of a 60-page report commissioned by the city of Fort Erie:

http://www.rypn.org/forums/vie....php?f=1&t=41026

And here's the Sept. 22, 2017 report that Fort Erie, Ontario commissioned:

https://drive.google.com/file/...NEJxN2c1VTRWZWM/view

 

The above should give you a more accurate report of 6218's current day condition and what it would take to correct same. Hope you find it of interest!

Firewood posted:

There was an appeal a few years ago for about $500,000 to give 6218 her first face-lift in years. I think that's all you're going to see in the restoration direction.

http://www.trha.ca/2010/03/for...toration-of-cnr.html

http://fess.dsbn.org/docs/guid...rochure.pdf?sfvrsn=0

I feel the overall climate for steam locomotives in North America is becoming slowly un-friendly. As the knowledge base slowly shrinks, and the corporate boardroom friendliness evaporates, the steamers will slowly be parked. There are bright lights, and we all know them, but in general mainline railroad steam will become a too-expensive, too-bureaucratic, insurance-nightmarish morass.

The possibility of static displays being restored to low pressure steam operation is possible, but there might be an alternative. I think for our future generations to see the BIG steam locomotive experience up close, the Disney / movie effects / engineering interpretation approach is an option. Mechanical restoration and hydraulic operation of key components in animated displays has been done. The Cruquius steam pump museum in the Netherlands is a wonderful example of old steam technology preservation. The engine/pump is fully operational through custom-designed modern hydraulics. The option of full steam restoration wasn't an option, so no operating boilers. I think that's the key to future museum locomotives. No mainline operation, and no live boiler to horrify the insurance executives - but make it alive somehow, and capture the viewer's imagination. Just my $0.02's worth or less.

I hope you are wrong about that. It would be a sad day indeed if steam locomotives were no longer running.

One thing about trains, it doesn't matter where they are going, it's having the sense to get on.

Brody - looks like the city of Fort Erie is going to step up and stabilize / start restoring 6218 now:

https://www.niagarathisweek.co...toration-of-cn-6218/

Also take note that the Alberta Railway Museum was willing to take 6218 away to be restored including picking up the shipping costs.

So looks like 6218 will be staying in Canada so you can look for a new engine to rescue. NKP 624 may be a good one for you to get involved with since it went to FWRHS so will be handy for you being a local member of that organization. They also have NKP SD9 358 which is currently undergoing restoration.

645 posted:

Brody - looks like the city of Fort Erie is going to step up and stabilize / start restoring 6218 now:

https://www.niagarathisweek.co...toration-of-cn-6218/

Also take note that the Alberta Railway Museum was willing to take 6218 away to be restored including picking up the shipping costs.

So looks like 6218 will be staying in Canada so you can look for a new engine to rescue. NKP 624 may be a good one for you to get involved with since it went to FWRHS so will be handy for you being a local member of that organization. They also have NKP SD9 358 which is currently undergoing restoration.

Promising news!  The only thing that grates me about that article is how someone can't bother to do some basic research on a steam locomotive: "Its engine is cracked open and spewing iron and rust", things like that.

That's annoying.

"Maybe someday, you'll be an Engineer for the Santa Fe!" - in a note to me sent with a P.R. package from the Santa Fe railroad.

Robert K posted:

Why are some big railroads so afraid of steam? Boiler explosions? Breakdowns or derailments tying up a single track busy railroad for hours? At least NS saw the value of steam and still allows 611 to run.

You forgot one of the biggest reasons; they bring WAY TOO MANY people, and idiots, to trackside!

Robert K posted:

Why are some big railroads so afraid of steam? Boiler explosions? Breakdowns or derailments tying up a single track busy railroad for hours? At least NS saw the value of steam and still allows 611 to run.

NS will currently allow steam ferry moves, but no steam excursions.

Rusty

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