Thursday, July 29, 2021

A New Paintjob

 Over the weekend, thanks to the help of Operations Manager, Roger Pierson, Car 1326 has been receiving a new paintjob. After receiving the mixed paint from John, Roger, along with Wil, Jayden, David, and John Z. began painting both sides of car 1326. The red lettering was first covered in painters tape and will be redone after all of the yellow coats are completed.

Car 1326 primed and waiting to be painted

Car 1326 after being painted on one side

Once one side of the car was completely painted, it was brought up to the shop where it was discovered a motor lead was broken, causing wheel slip as the car tried to climb the shop lead. John promptly found the issue and replaced the broken motor lead.


Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Summer 2021 Update

 Hi everyone! First I'd like to apologize for the lack of updates. We at the Shop Blog are definitely now trying harder to update this blog somewhat weekly. Anyways, onto the updates!

After Winterfest of 2020, 5645 went out of service for some major overhaul work. This work mainly consisted of the bearings and trucks. We hope to have 5645 back in service by August. 

All the cars in the operating fleet have had their standard maintenance with cleaning controllers and bearings.

Earlier in the month car 355 experienced a problem where the breaker to the controller would open and so the controller would not operate the car unless reset. The problem part in the breaker was replaced. Once the new part was installed, it was discovered that the locking arm for the breaker arm itself needed to be replaced. After the new locking arms were built, the breaker operated like new.

Car 3001's progress is coming along nicely. The bearings have been completed on the car and John is currently working on the motor cases.

In track news, Camillo has been making amazing progress on the mainline. 6 new ties have been installed at Station 8 and trolley service is now extended past Station 7 out to that point. Hartman's siding is also being renovated to facilitate the easier movement of cars in and out of the Visitor's Center.

Thursday, November 26, 2020

November 2020 Update

 A lot has happened at the museum since we last posted. 

As of 11/21/2020 the 4, 355, 836, 16, 1326, and 303 (for special service) have been serviced and are ready for operations.

John continues to work on Line Car 1 and 3001. Line car 1 should have functioning controllers on both ends of the car soon as well as design ideas and prep for the safety platform and diving board system for service in 2021 (Date TBA). 

Minor work continues on 5645 including doors, controllers, and getting the car prepared for overhaul work in 2021.

Dennis Pacelli has been instrumental in assisting John and taking on projects of his own to maintain and keep our fleet in excellent operating order.

303 needed 2 extra days of work to repair, service, and bring the car to operational standards because of Dennis's outstanding effort. 


101 and 18 will also be getting work done in 2021. In 2021 we will continue to rebuild the track and overhead infustructure on the museum property and having good service cars and locomotives at the ready.

Thanks to our new Track Department head Camilo Santiago, a section of North Road Track 2 has been dug out and new ties put underneath it to support the track. 

Camilio replacing a rail on North Road Track 2


We'd also like to extend a huge thank you to Roger Pierson and his crew for their dedication to decorating the inside of the Visitor Center for Winterfest this year!



Monday, November 2, 2020

Replacement Switch Timbers

 Due to last weeks rain, the tar for 303's roof was not all put in place. During the week when the weather is more promising the rest of the coat will be applied to the car. 

Line car 1's controllers continue to get worked on as well as fixing the fuse box inside the car.

The shop will be returning to work very soon on car 3001 once the shop cleanup is completed and some smaller projects are finished.

On Saturday, Camilo and his crew replaced multiple switch timbers within Kelly Yard to improve the trackage going into the barn on tracks 2 and 3.

Kelly 2/3 Switch being dug out

Special thanks this week to Chief Motorman Roger Pierson and his crew for completing the Christmas decorations on cars 355 and 4 in preparation for the Winterfest Season!


Monday, October 26, 2020

Work on 303 Continues

 John found wiring problems with Line Car 1's controllers during the week. We are still looking to have the controllers and handbrakes at the west end working properly by the end of this week. The shop is currently working on plans for the new upper work platform which will be a fixed stationary platform with a diving board system. The shop will also patch up any holes in the roof and winterize the car. 

John replaced the top of 1326's west end brake stand resolving the stiffness completely. Ryan Boucher also replaced the west end pole rope of the car as it was showing signs of wear. 

Work continued on 303 during the week and is showing great progress. Currently the 4 motors of the car are being baked to dry them of moister from the car's extended vacation in Northern Barn. The resistors have been inspected and given a clean bill of health from Dennis. The controller group is currently being inspected. The roof wiring is being replaced and conduit is being reattached on the car. Scraping of pealing paint has begun on the car and touch up paint will be applied. All leaking roof spots are being sealed with tar to re-waterproof the car. 


John putting sealing tar on the roof of 303

The headlights grounding is also going to be fixed. Hopefully this week 303 will be air and line tested. stayed tuned for updates throughout the next several weeks as progress continues.


Once 303 has completed her maintenance and check rides the shop will be moving on to car 101 where she will receive the same heavy servicing that 3030 has undergone. Check back weekly as work continues.

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

836 Back in Service & A New Project

Car 836 received scheduled service during this week. A few small corrections were made to the car and 836 is back in full service for the fall season. 

John has been working to complete the second controller for Line Car 1 with the help of members from other museums.

Car 303 is currently undergoing a full mechanical and operational maintenance plan that is beginning this week. All repairs to the electrical, roof, and resistors will be completed over the next few weeks. After some searching, all the documentation on the car has been found allowing the shop to have a more comprehensive maintenance plan.

All of the members of the shop have been working hard to get the operating fleet back up and running, with the help from members of our fellow museums. Thank you to everyone who has volunteered their time to help get our fleet back into operation!

Monday, October 12, 2020

1326's Brake Stand Gets Cleaned

 Over the past week, some of the operators who ran car 1326 noticed the west end brake stand becoming stiffer over time. On Saturday, John looked inside the brake stand and saw that dirt and grime has been clogging the brake stand, limiting its ability to move. The cleaning process only takes 10-20 minutes, so the stand will be cleaned out weekly to prevent the brake becoming stiff. 

Inside of 1326's west end brake stand

West end brake stand without the top attached

The shop has also been working on 5645. The bearing problem has been solved, but it has also been discovered that 2 motors are in need of repair. These motors will need to be sent for repairs in late December or early January.


We would like to give another massive thank you to John, our current shop manager for all of the hard work that he and his team have been putting in to keeping the fleet operational. We'd also like to thank Rob, the President of the CTM, Justin, the Operations Manager, and the Operations department for the hours of hard work they have put in to organizing and helping the shop finish projects to keep the cars in working order. Thank you to all!