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Messages - Stewart "Start" Rhine

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Volunteers / Re: Finding the WW&F on Facebook
« on: September 24, 2017, 11:41:39 PM »
The Sunday evening post is an update on all the fine work Mike Fox has been doing north of ToM.  The photos start at EoT and go north, the last picture features a surprise find.

Volunteers / Re: September 2017 work planning
« on: September 24, 2017, 09:49:35 PM »
Work done, Sunday, September 24th -

* Shop - Zack finished the repairing the stairs.  There are steel straps that tie the top of the stringers into the floor joists and the steps have risers between the treads.  This work, along with adjusting the existing braces makes the stairs more solid.

* Guests - A fairly quiet day but those who visited had a nice time.  One fellow is an author who is writing a novel about train travel circa 1905 as it related to sports teams and sports equipment suppliers who traveled by train. The guest asked some of us a bunch of questions.  We spoke with him for a while and gave him a tour of the shop.  He was so taken with the WW&F that he joined the museum on the spot.  That visitor, along with the a membership renewal and new life member had the gift shop doing well. 

Just a thought, here's an approach for anyone asking about changing a work situation: 

Hi, has the museum ever tried _______ to improve the _________ project? 
Those questions are well received because suggestions for improvement are a positive thing.  Don't condemn the work of others or the way a project is conducted in front of everyone, it doesn't help anything. 

Also, if questions are asked or suggestions made, don't be upset when someone replies "oh, we thought of it or we tried that 10 years ago and it didn't work".  Remember, many projects and varied types of work have been done at the museum in years past.  The fact that we have members who have volunteered for 5, 10 or 20+ years is a wonderful thing.

This year is the 20th anniversary of the first Work Weekend with planned goals.  In October of 1997, we spent Columbus Day Weekend building the first curve and grade crossing on the mainline.  It was a lot of work but the job got done and we were happy to have accomplished some "firsts".  After the track work, the train could be run far enough north that you didn't see it from the depot, that was a big thing. 

The spirit of that first Fall Work Weekend still lives in the excitement of what we can all do when a bunch of volunteers get together with a specific goal.  We will do the same thing in two weeks and I look forward to seeing everyone.       

It doesn't mean full automation, but I was thinking of things along the lines of ....

Laying out the ties before the 3-day work window with a smaller crew so the larger crew can get going immediately laying, aligning and spiking rail.

* This has been done a number of times, especially north of Sutter's Crossing in 1999 when the tie hauling was done with pickup trucks.  Using trucks only works when there is an enter and exit road for the grade.  Setting ties out from a work flat with a group of volunteers works better and is more enjoyable.   

Use an A-Frame Derrick with a roller to move/position the rail sections in place off of the work car - this is how they took the rails up on the Rio Grande Southern with a Goose and a trailer car. The derrick would be good for maintenance

* Using the crane on the flatcar has been done a few times but it is slower (with hook up and disconnect) than pulling sticks from the lower work flats.  The biggest problem with the crane on the flatcar is side clearance, it is difficult to work in cuts due to side swing.

A hydraulic dump car for spreading ballast on newly spiked track to work in tandem with the tamper.

* There is a set of drawings for a Portland Company hopper car that was designed for the WW&F around 1900.  The plans were circulated on the old forum years ago.  There was much discussion about building a car that was never produced.  In looking into the construction, the price tag was high for a car that would only be used once or twice a year.  Trucks alone are over $20,000 so the project has been dormant.   

I can see the "fun" part being laying the rail and spiking it down, but hand shoveling ballast off a flat car? Sounds like a sore back to me. It's just like tamping and the reason why Big Joe exists. It means more time can be spent on the art of spiking and aligning new rail instead of the drudgery of shoveling rock.

Dana Wigwam is certainly a one-of-a-kind, and this is the 20th anniversary of his joining the track crew. 

Volunteers / Re: Finding the WW&F on Facebook
« on: September 19, 2017, 10:01:23 PM »
Tonight we posted an ad for the Fall Festival.  We are trying something new with a Tuesday "promo" post each week highlighting events at the museum.  Please share these with your friends for maximum coverage.

Volunteers / Re: Finding the WW&F on Facebook
« on: September 19, 2017, 09:59:21 PM »
Hi Kevin,

The woods track is just a spur that feeds the loading area in the n/w corner of the parking lot. It and the north yard are never considered main line trackage regardless of switch position.  Here's how you reach the woods track with a locomotive or railcar:

* Switch #1 - You are working south on the original mainline and diverge into the north yard spur at the mainline switch.  You will see a red target indicating that the switch is set for you to proceed into the yard. 

* Switch #2 - The next switch takes you off of the main stem of the yard track the feeds bay 1 and the run through track. Throwing this switch (shows red) gives you access to the rest of the yard.

* Switch #3 - This switch gives you the choice of accessing bay 2 or 3 of the car barn.  If set for bay 3 it will show red.

* Switch #4 - The last switch which comes off the bay 3 lead.  When it is lined for the Woods Track, it will display a red aspect.

As you can see, every one of the switch stand targets will show a red aspect when they are all lined for the engine reach the Woods Track.

Hope this explains the set up.  The best way to understand all the switches is to see them in person, we hope you can visit Sheepscot sometime for a tour.

Volunteers / Re: A few stories ...
« on: September 18, 2017, 03:47:15 PM »
Story #146 - Spoof

Last week museum volunteers spent hours getting things ready for the new shop floor and the insulation of the freight house floor.  The freight house job required clearing out everything from underneath the building for the contractors to have full room to work.  As things were being pulled out into the sunlight a few unusual items were found.  One was a nearly full-sized coffin made of plywood.  The coffin was from a Halloween display some 15+ years ago and no one remembered when it was hidden under the freight house.  Close inspection revealed part of a plastic skeleton inside.  There was also a mouse nest and part of the bottom was rotten.  It was decided that the coffin should go to the dump with the other rotten wood that was removed. 

Well, everything was loaded into the railroad's pickup and the coffin was on top.  A certain volunteer ... we'll call him "Gus" took off with the junk wood and coffin in the back.  He had to watch the load in back as he drove on the rough part of the West Alna Road.  He was half way to the dump when he looked back to check the load.  He noticed a car following as he hit a bump and the coffin bounced.  Then he watched as the lid opened up a little and one of the plastic hands came out.  He slowed down a bit looked again and noticed that the driver was on her cell phone.  At that point he realized that the person following was the mother of one of the local newspaper reporters.  The road smoothed out and he hit the gas to get some distance from the following vehicle.  He made it to the dump and the coffin was the first thing into the wood bin.  Driving back out, he didn't see the car that followed him ... and he was some glad that the truck never got lettered "WW&F Railway".           

Volunteers / Re: September 2017 work planning
« on: September 18, 2017, 03:24:45 PM »
Sunday, September 17th -

* Birthday Party - The biggest event by far was a Harry Potter themed birthday party for a 12 year old boy.  Over 60 people attended with about 40 children in the group.  Most of the kids and a few adults were in costume.  The group was so large that we offered the use of caboose 320 and coach 3.  The cars were tied down on the run through track while the guests enjoyed refreshments.  The birthday cars were added to the 3:00 o'clock trip, creating a 4 car train.  Engineman Joe and Ashcat J.B. had their work cut out for them but things went well and the guests had a great time.  For some it was their first visit and a number of them said they would be back for another ride.

If track gets built across the washout it can't go very far because it can't be built near where the access road comes to the grade.  It would block trucks and equipment from reaching the other places where the grade needs repair work.

Volunteers / Re: Finding the WW&F on Facebook
« on: September 18, 2017, 12:40:05 AM »
Regular volunteers will enjoy the Sunday evening post as it shows a clear way for a train to move to the Woods Track from the north yard.  Have a look to see why RED = GO.

Museum Discussion / Re: We Want a Feline
« on: September 17, 2017, 09:59:36 AM »
He will if it's a chocolate moose.

Work and Events / Re: Shop Building Improvements - Official Work Thread
« on: September 16, 2017, 09:36:27 PM »

* Zack re-installed the work bench (and vice) along the wall under the stairs. And built a shelf over it for the long wood bits.

* The bottom steps were rebuilt to fit the new floor.

* More things were removed from the old east wall and the south end of bay 3 was cleaned up a bit.

A number of visitors walked through the shop, admiring the new floor.  One even noted that we could have a barn dance with all the room.

Volunteers / Re: September 2017 work planning
« on: September 16, 2017, 09:30:47 PM »
Work done on Saturday, September 16th:

* R-O-W - Mike worked on installation of the smaller culverts north of ToM.

* Shop - Zack installed the work bench under the stairs and built a shelf for the long wood bits.  Some clean up was done in the south end.

* Train operations - Some new moves were tried today such as RC4 returning to Sheepscot via the north yard and run through track to access the turntable. This keeps the south yard clear for the locomotive to do a service stop, get water and run around the train.

* Track - More replica 1912 era switch stand targets were made.  One will go on the mill siding switch once it has been moved back from the mainline with the installation of a longer throw rod.

* Lunch - A nice 5 cheese lasagna was enjoyed by the crew. 

Museum Discussion / Re: We Want a Feline
« on: September 15, 2017, 08:06:15 PM »
I think the Rhine's cats are spoiled by living in a super environment.  I don't think they would want to spend time in a dirty shop.


But, but ... wait, super environment?  You haven't seen the junk yard in my cellar!

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