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Topics - James Patten

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Volunteers / December 2018 Work Reports
« on: November 28, 2018, 10:46:41 AM »
Anticipated work for Saturday Dec 1:

* Charter: there's a charter Saturday for a retirement party.  Some train crew may be needed for that.
* Tree cutting: Starting at the north end (by the bridge) and working south.  Be careful coming off the south end of the bridge, the ground is very rough (until we get snow on it).
* Historical group meeting: Dave and I (and maybe others, not sure) will be attending a morning meeting of local historical groups.  Part of the reason is to get ready for Maine's 200th anniversary in 2020.
* Machine shop: crane rails and insulation.

Museum Discussion / A letter of encouragement
« on: November 18, 2018, 08:55:19 PM »
We received this letter in the mail from a donor to the 21 Campaign, which I thought should be shared to the forum.  Although the donation applies to the 21, the message in the letter applies to the forum and the Museum as a whole.

This donation is in recognition of the tremendous progress your whole team has made in 2018.  As you know, the list of accomplishments the museum has made this year is long, varied and inspiring.  You have an exceptional team of employees and volunteers who worked together to get all of this done.  I only wish I lived closer so that I could donate some of my own "sweat" to help in meeting your goals.

I want to add how important your "Forum" is to keeping my interest and enthusiasm about your progress high.  I read it at least daily.  The many postings and pictures keep me up to date and make me feel almost like I am there.  Without them I'd lose my connection and interest in your wonderful organization.  Please encourage your "posters" to keep it up.

Consider yourselves all encouraged!

Other Narrow Gauge / WWI Documentary - They Shall Not Grow Old
« on: November 11, 2018, 10:11:35 PM »
For those that haven't heard, there's a new documentary of the First World War "They Shall Not Grow Old".  The film has been colorized thanks to the computer processing power of Lord of the Rings movie fame Peter Jackson.  Film from those days is faster than today, so the computers added frames to films.  I just watched it on BBC Two and was duly impressed.  Commentary is provided via voice overs of interviews of WWI vets from the 1960s, I believe.

There is some footage of some of the trench railroads.  At least a minute's worth, although I can't tell you exactly how much because the feed froze at that time.

Parts are not for those who are squeamish, as you can imagine. 

Volunteers / Alan Downey - TV Star
« on: November 03, 2018, 09:32:03 PM »
I heard today that Alan Downey made an appearance in a political TV ad.  The video can be found at  You can see him at 8 seconds in.

Here's a quick screen grab:

Volunteers / November 2018 Work Report
« on: October 31, 2018, 09:48:50 AM »
Anticipated work for Saturday Nov 3:

* Track work - Let's eliminate the slow order at the north end of Davis Grade!  And perhaps work on staggering the joints at north end of Cockeye curve.
* Machine shop
* Percival deck - I think Zack has a little bit more to do on it.

No passenger trains - the season ended last weekend - and no Albion Day.  Wear blaze orange!

Volunteers / September 2018 Work Reports
« on: August 29, 2018, 09:57:29 AM »
Anticipated work for weekend of Sept 1 & 2, 2018.  Note that we are not open on Labor Day (at least for train rides).

* Bridge
* Mountain Extension (although no Mike this weekend)
* Caboose 320 cupola
* Operations etc

Volunteers / August 2018 Work Reports
« on: August 01, 2018, 10:20:57 AM »
Anticipated work for weekend of August 4-5, 2018:

* Mountain extension.  Mike is prepping for the blocks?
* Bridge.  Interior still needs stain, as of last weekend.
* Car shop/machine shop organization.
* Caboose 320.

General Discussion / Ford Model A engines
« on: July 24, 2018, 12:35:19 AM »
This is only tangentally related to the Museum, so that's why I stick it here.

Our Model T railcar engine was built in 1931.  Someone emailed us asking how that could be when Ford stopped making Model A's in 1928.

Wikipedia tells me that Ford kept making T engines until 1941, but stopped making the car in 1928.  So why did they make the engines for more than a decade after they stopped building the car?

Volunteers / June 2018 Work Planning
« on: May 30, 2018, 09:55:58 AM »
Anticipated work for weekend of June 2:

* Caboose 320
* Percival House stairs
* Track work
* Mountain ROW/Trout Brook

Volunteers / May 2018 Work Planning
« on: May 02, 2018, 11:03:24 AM »
Anticipated work for Saturday May 5, 2018: Annual Meeting day

* Annual Meeting is in the afternoon at the Alna Meeting House.  Sorry, I can never remember the time when I write these!
* Track work: I don't know what is left to do after last weekend.
* Machine shop: I don't know what's left to do there either (other than wiring).
* Percival house stairs
* Boxcar 67
* Bridge.

Museum Discussion / WW&F Items at Brookline Auction on 4/15/18
« on: April 13, 2018, 01:06:05 PM »
Member Jeff Cohn of Vermont will be attending Brookline Auction in NH tomorrow. Several items related to WW&F are among the lots offered.  Another friend of the Museum has asked him to bid (within a reasonable limit) on certain WW&F items.  If successful, it is the other person's intention to provide these historic item (s) to WW&F as a gift.  The most significant item is a 1909 WW&F broadside timetable, Lot # 32.  There’s also a 6-volume set of WW&F books (lot #52) but Jeff doesn't know if these are unique to the WW&F archive. He also believes that there’s an old brass luggage tag further down the list.

These lots can be viewed at the Brookline Auctions website:

Perhaps other friends of WW&F intend to participate in the auction with a similar goal.  Jeff doesn't want his participation to result in an inflated price for items destined for the WW&F Railway Museum.  His sole objectives are to do his best to acquire historical items that should be returned to WW&F and to avoid conflict with other individuals with a similar goal.

Museum Discussion / Dave Buczkowski TV interview
« on: April 07, 2018, 11:38:22 PM »
Last week Dave was interviewed by local community television Lincoln County TV for their "Community Conversations" program.  The interview is about a half hour, and can be seen either at or at  A very enjoyable half hour.

Volunteers / April 2018 work planning
« on: April 04, 2018, 10:05:08 AM »
Anticipated work for Saturday April 7:

* Boxcar 67
* Loco 10 boiler
* SWW prep
* Possible tree cutting for west parking lot (depends on outcome of research)

Additionally there's a ham & bean supper at the Alna Fire Department at 4:30.  Yum yum!

Volunteers / March 2018 Work Planning
« on: February 28, 2018, 11:02:59 AM »
Anticipated work for Saturday March 3:

* Boxcar 67
* Mountain Extension ROW clearing
* #10 boiler work

Volunteers / February 2018 Work Planning
« on: January 31, 2018, 11:02:01 AM »
Anticipated work for Saturday Feb 3:

A cold stiff wind is forecast for this day.
* Trout Brook bridge zone tree clearing.
* Boxcar 67
* Archives

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