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Author Topic: The Big 94 and the Little 4  (Read 2532 times)
Roger Whitney
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« on: May 24, 2012, 05:26:38 PM »


   One of my favorite pictures of the Monson is on page 93 in the Jones Book.  It shows Bangor & Aroostook ten-wheeler No. 94 switching the B&A side of the yard and in the background Monson No. 4 taking on water.  Lets take a closer look at these engines.
   B&A No. 94 along with sisters 93 and 95 were common motive power on the Greenville Branch in the later years of the Monson.  They were designated class D-3 and built by Alco-Manchester in November of 1911.  There were six locomotives in this class numbered 90 thru 95.  With a few minor differences these locomotives all looked alike. This class had 20 x 26 inch cylinders, 63 inch drivers and carried 200 psi boiler pressure.  Fully loaded they weighed 165,100 pounds.  Pictures show that they had various length tenders, some shorter than others.
   These fairly light locomotives were used on the branch to accomidate the weight restrictions on Bunker Brook Trestle.  After steam had disappeared, specially modified (lightened) BL-2’s were used because of this restriction.
   The D-3’s were rather graceful looking locomotives and were typical branch line power for their time.  Roundhouse used to make a very close model of this locomotive called their “Harriman”.  You could even get the short coal tenders.  They looked good but their gearing and motor left a little to be desired.  I had one numbered B&A 93 but lost it in a fire.
   To the right of No. 94 in the picture is Monson Vulcan No. 4. taking on water.  I’ll be talking about watering at the Junction in a future blog.
   Vulcan No. 4 was built in 1918 by Vulcan Iron Works in Wilks-Barre PA.  She weighed 40,300 pounds (3300 pounds heavier than No. 3 according to some sources) and had 30-inch drivers.  This is a little curious.  I have conflicting information on the weight and driver diameter. No. 3 had 33 inch drivers and was a little lighter.  Maybe the Monson brass decided that if No. 4 was a little heavier and had slightly smaller drivers, she’d have a little more tractive effort.  Maybe someone at Maine Narrow Gauge can confirm that No. 4 has indeed 30 inch drivers. Anyway the 10 x 14 inch cylinders and 165 pound boiler pressure was the same.  Both No’s 3 and 4 had the unique Franklin clamshell type fire doors.  I believe these were unique to the Monson.
   You can still see the footings for Bunker Brook Trestle, especially when the leaves are off the trees.  It’s a little hike down a steep slope, but it’s worth it.
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Bill Piche
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« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2012, 07:51:07 PM »

This is a little curious.  I have conflicting information on the weight and driver diameter. No. 3 had 33 inch drivers and was a little lighter.  Maybe the Monson brass decided that if No. 4 was a little heavier and had slightly smaller drivers, she’d have a little more tractive effort.  Maybe someone at Maine Narrow Gauge can confirm that No. 4 has indeed 30 inch drivers.

#3 is certainly lighter than #4. It's the main reason why 3 was the "traveling" engine when it was at the MNG. That and the fact that #4 was in the museum until about 2002.

Depending on who you ask, #4 is about 18-22 tons in weight once all the fuel is added in. #3 is probably 15 to 19, but I'm not entirely sure. They have a more or less accurate breakdown of the 4 Edaville engines in the Mark I video "Edaville Railroad: Massachusetts' Maine Attraction" that I can't remember exactly off the top of my head.

The drivers on #4 are indeed smaller than those on #3. The idea went back to Vulcan's designing of #3. If a shop was making a "custom" engine, they'd take all the data provided by the railroad (ruling grade, distance, speed, expected load, etc.) and build an locomotive to do the work. My understanding was that the Hinkley's could each pull a single carload of slate out of the mines at a time. Monson #3 was designed to do 2. When they went back to Vulcan, they asked for an engine that could do 3 carloads. Whether or not 4 regularly did 3 carloads of slate or not is not something that I know for certain, but I do know that she can handle a 7 (and maybe more) car passenger train even at reduced pressure.

Both No’s 3 and 4 had the unique Franklin clamshell type fire doors.  I believe these were unique to the Monson.
If this was unique to the Monson originally, then Edaville liked them so much that they put them on 7 and 8. All of the Edaville engines have clamshell doors.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2012, 06:10:28 PM by Bill Piche » Logged

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Roger Whitney
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« Reply #2 on: May 31, 2012, 05:29:39 PM »

Thank you Bill!  I figured someone out there would have more info!
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