W.W.&F. Discussion Forum
July 24, 2017, 05:31:13 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Notice: One good turn deserves another.
 
   Home   Help Search Login Register  
Pages: [1]
  Print  
Author Topic: A Report of #4's Last Day  (Read 2245 times)
Hansel Fardon
Hostler
***
Posts: 211


View Profile
« on: December 29, 2014, 09:50:36 PM »

It was 4:30. My reporting time would be 6:00. I woke up and had a quick breakfast and coffee. Then I drove to the railroad and met up with Dakota, Will, and Hans.

Rain. It was bad, pouring worse than cats & dogs. I was assigned as fireman, while Datoka (same age as me) was assigned as Engineer Instructor. The others opened the doors and oiled while I stuck my head in the firebox to pick the grates. Hans fired up #1 (the diesel) and we had to wait. Impatience grew, So I decided to shine the brass (the rain would take care of the boiler jacket!). Finally, after what seemed like forever, the diesel was ready to couple on. #7 was pulled into the "shop" area, while #4 was pulled over to "the boxcar". Ahhhhh, the boxcar. We have more boxcars than anything else, but this one is special! It sits on the ground without any trucks and serves as our wood shed. Wood, wood, and plenty of wood was quickly loaded into #4's doorway, which would eventually end up in the firebox. Will had the honors of lighting the fire. Will is a long time volunteer who never joined the steam crew, so Hans taught him how to fire up.

Once the gauge reach 25 psi, Hans handed the fire over to me while he pushed #4 over to the coal pile with the diesel. While I brought the pessure up, the others carefully dumped a small bucket-full with the loader one last time. After we loaded up, we were pretty much ready to go chugga chugga.

The caboose was then tacked on for the families of the guest engineers, before heading over the the platform.

Our first Guest Engineer was a young CSX conductor! He knew his stuff and did a great job as engineer.

The second engineer was an older man who brought his whole family! He didn't seem like a railfan, but he was interested in steam boats. He claimed that his father invented the stoker system!

For the third trip, Wes and Jay kicked the "kids" out while we ate pizza! The Guest Engineer was a young guy, who seemed very enthusiastic about trains! Me and Dakota got bored, so we decided to oil up #8 and then helped Hans carry #7's headlight and bell into the shops. Unfortunately, Dakota had to leave at 2:30 for work.

The last trip was special though. A true father and son moment! Hans's 22 yr. old son hopped into the window of #4, while Hans taught him how to run the engine. Hans did a great job as a teacher, as his son provided a smooth ride for us. Hans's son had only been to the railroad once prior, and never turned out to be a crazy railfan like the rest of us!

After his trip, the water hoses while piled onto the pilot and the rest of us got OUR turn at the throttle! We all got to blow the whistle, driving our neighbors crazy! Then #4 coupled onto #7 and #1 and pulled the consist into the yard. *insert wheelslip noises*. Once #4 got into the yard, the fire was dumped for the last time, and then was winterized. *blowdown noises* WAT!? I CAN'T HEAR YOU! :-)

After #4 was winterized, Wes grabbed #1 and pushed #4 and #7 into their nice warm shed. Then me, Wes, Jay, and Jon cleaned the steam chests and got the engine ready for the cold months ahead.


I'd like to thank Wes, Jay, Bill, Dakota, Hans and the rest of the steam crew who helped out this season. You're all awesome.
« Last Edit: December 29, 2014, 10:01:33 PM by Hansel Fardon » Logged
John McNamara
Operating Volunteers
Dispatcher
*****
Posts: 1,024


View Profile
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2014, 10:11:36 PM »

Nicely reported. I can almost feel the soot on my clothes. Grin
-John
Logged
Hansel Fardon
Hostler
***
Posts: 211


View Profile
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2014, 10:16:28 PM »

Thanks John! I got timed out, so I had to write the whole thing twice!
Logged
Ira Schreiber
Museum Member
Dispatcher
*****
Posts: 1,023

Life Member


View Profile
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2014, 10:56:46 PM »

Ah, the joys of steam..............
Logged
Bill Piche
Museum Member
Brakeman
***
Posts: 150



View Profile
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2014, 08:28:32 PM »

Since he can't thank himself, a big thanks to Hansel as well for helping to record this (and many other) MNG events for people to reading about/seeing in the future.


Overall a very successful final two days of steam for Monson #4. At least the weather was clear (if cold), which made the long morning steamup easier. #4 ran like a champ all weekend (she's still spry even after 96 years of service for 3 different railroads), with no mechanical problems at all making for smooth railroading all day.

Saturday's guests were no less varied but equally as entertaining.

The first person we had was a young man who brought his father along with him on a vacation to Maine. He couldn't have been out of his 20s but is a chair trombonist for the National Symphony Orchestra in DC. His profession matched up quite well with my fellow engineer's hobby (also a trombone player).

The second guest was about as far the other end of the spectrum as you could get. He was a (somewhat) local man who once upon a time (at the tender young age of 6) had gone for a cab ride in Ellis Atwood's "brand new" #4 in 1948 at the oldest of old Edavilles. He was a huge fan of logging railroads (and even operated the Heisler at Oregon Coast RR), and him and my fireman (an 18 year old with a passion for Clark's trading post and owner of a live steam Heisler) talked each other's ears off  whenever we were stopped. He brought along two generations of his family to enjoy the trips up and down the waterfront.

The third gentleman was quite the traveling railfan. His story was that he spent his college years at Mich. St. helping on the rebuild project of the PM 1225 before going to study abroad in the UK for a year. This is where he got a passion for English steam (and a very nice English lady whom he brought back with him). He told us about all the places in the UK that he went railfanning and/or for driver's courses.

The last guest we had was definitely the most accomplished (in life) individual that I've met so far. He was the founder/owner of a local Portland brewery (a very popular one, at that). He had a blast just getting to go back and forth and hear the stories about the Maine Two-Footers that we could remember. Of course, my opinion of him COULD be slightly swayed by the frosty donation he made to the (of age) crew members as we were packing up for the evening.

Many thanks go to all the guest engineers who helped to make the last weekend a smashing success, and here's to continuing that success at all the Maine Two Foot museums in the future.
Logged

Engineer/Fireman, MNGRR
"Any day with steam is a good day." - me
John McNamara
Operating Volunteers
Dispatcher
*****
Posts: 1,024


View Profile
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2014, 09:18:03 PM »

Hey Bill, Hansel,
Going to Steam in the Snow on Saturday? See you there!
-John
Logged
Pages: [1]
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2006-2008, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!