Friday, November 30, 2012

223 updates: November 2012

So the mystery is closer to solving. Why won't the 223's wheels turn? It was originally thought that it was because of the bent main rod on the fireman's side, but the pins were pulled and the rod disconnected from the wheels...and they still won't turn. So that rules that possiblity out - there's something deeper that's keeping the axles locked. What it is we don't know yet.

An attempt was made to roll the 223, with the rod disconnected, to remove the rods completely, and nothing happened with the car boot -  other than actually lifting the pony truck from the rail. A pickup was chained to the drawbar pin...and likewise nothing happened. So this is going to be harder than we thought.

On November 24 quite a bit of work was accomplished. In the past few months the piping, brake cylinders and johnson bar were removed, leaving the boiler looking very bare. Maynard reported in the last chapter newsletter that "As fill in for the winter we are working on many of the engine parts.  Some pipes are being replaced with new pipes.  Parts are being removed and cleaned up either by sand blasting or in the solvent tank.  The engine brake pistons have been removed to be cleaned up and refurbished.  One seems to work well but the other is leaking around the piston seal.  Numerous sheet metal pieces have to be made and holes cut into the metal cab floor pieces for pipes and levers.  Sand blasting of the big parts is being done at a commercial shop.  Since I am the one taking the parts in and back, I can verify that they are heavy."
The pieces were sandblasted, and an exclamation of "That's what you see in real restoration shops!" was jokingly directed towards Maynard:
Then they were primed...

With a break to enlighten a visitor on the Cumbres & Toltec, since that is one of the railroads that's been tossed around as a location for the 223 to run.

The coupler cutoff bar has been completed and chained to the pin. The brackets were made by Bob Wachs, who as noted in the previous post (Chapter News) passed away the next day on November 25. He has left behind a legacy in his work on the 223:
Plus, the main airtank hydro tested. We are deciding if we want to reuse it, or build a new tank and encase it inside the original shell.

With work on the tender wrapping up, as can be seen attention is being focused on the locomotive itself. Maynard wrote about what needs to be done to complete the tender:
"Coating the inside of the tender tank is a bigger problem than I expected.  There are numerous materials we could use but there is little data as to how well each would perform.  By the end of the year we should have the air tank renovated and the airline piping done.  We won't put the air tank on the tender until spring when the weather is nice.  We need to roll the tender out of the shop and have a crane lift the tank up and onto the rear of the tender water tank.  Along with this we need to install some steel plates on the bottom of the wooden bolster beam.  We can hopefully do both when we have a crane come to the shop.
"We received the pipe (3/8 inch and 1 1/4 inch) we had on order.  Getting the 3/8 inch seamless pipe turned out to take more time than expected and it is expensive. Great Western Supply agreed to give us the pipe and fittings at cost, which sure helped.  We pressurized the big tender air tank and it passed our test at 120 psi. The vertical drain pipe was clogged so we had to cut it out.  Will install a new pipe and weld up the 2 inch square hole we had to cut into the tank.  The 2 inch hole made it easier to clean out the rust particles.  The three rusted tension rods will be replaced next Saturday with new 1 1/8 inch steel rods.  Like the tender water tank we plan to coat the inside of the air tank.  Open for suggestions as to what we should use."

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