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Messages - Matt Latham

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Work and Events / Re: WW&F No. 52 - Official Work Thread
« on: January 09, 2011, 11:44:34 PM »
And I am very late in replying. A big thank you for the measurements Stewart. It helps with my planning.

Matt Latham in snowy Flower Mound, Texas

 This is very interesting to me. While I am remote from Maine, (Live in Texas), if there anything I can do to help, please let me know. While I am not a speed typist, I am slightly faster than the Columbus method. Spell-checker lets me type fast and correct the spelling later.  ;D

Wow! That video reminds me of the Rock Island tracks in North Fort Worth, just before the Rock stopped running.

Very nice video though. Thanks for the link.

General Discussion / Re: Who Am I? or, Let's Introduce Ourselves
« on: January 09, 2009, 06:19:39 PM »
Howdy from Texas!

My name is Matthew Latham, but I go by Matt. I live just northwest of Dallas in Flower Mound, Texas. I have been a longtime rail fan and model railroader. I was born in Virginia in 1958, and grew up in Arlington, Texas near the Texas & Pacifc Mainline, then Maryland north of Baltimore near the Pennsylvinia mainline, then Williamsport, Pennsylvania, then Long Island, New York. After the Blizzard of 78, I went west, back to Texas where I have lived ever since 1978. Mom and Dad were moving to Boston and I had enough of the snow to last me the rest of my life!

I come from a long line of professional railroaders. My maternal Grandfather worked for the Texas & Pacific Railway in Fort Worth from the 1930's until the 1970's when he retired. He worked in Tower 55 in downtown Fort Worth, Texas. When I was a young boy living in Arlington, Texas my Dad used to take me with him to Tower 55 to pick up Grandpa on the occason when he needed a ride home in the afternoon. Grandpa would sit at his desk with a cigar in his mouth and his feet on the desk and tell me which lever to throw by the number associated to the switch that needed to the thrown or the signal that needed to be cleared. Then I would run to the window to watch the train go by. The only time I was scared was when the Katy trains went by. The autoracks would be swaying back and forth like mad, and at times I thought they would tip over and take out the tower. Never did happen, but boy was it fun up there. With the Katy being low on the priority list to pass through the Tower 55 interlock, they would sometimes couple three to four trains together and run them past as one LONG train. It would really irritate my Grandfather as he would cuss up a storm while a three mile long Katy trained passed by at only 5 miles an hour.

My paternal Great Grandfather was an Engineer on the New Haven, and my maternal Great Grandfather was a section forman on the Texas & Pacific Railway in Texas. There were also some uncles on my Mom's side of the family that worked for the Santa Fe in Texas.

I currently work for EMC Corporation in Hopkinton, MA, but work from my home office in Texas. I have worked on large scale mainframe computer systems since 1978 and have worked for IBM and Amdahl in the past.

I discovered the WW&F in 2005 when I was on a business trip to Boston, and flew up early to visit my Mom and Dad in Maine over a weekend. They used to spend the summer in Maine. I flew into Boston, then took the Downeaster to Portland, Maine where my Dad picked me up. On the way to the house they had rented in Camden, he took me to see the WW&F Museum and boy was I hooked. Later, I talked my wife and daughter into a Maine vacation in 2007 and managed to stop by the Museum for a ride. What fun!

So I went home and started to tear up my HO Scale layout based on the Texas and Pacific railway to start building an On2 Layout based on the WW&F in the 1920's. My wife and daughter think I am crazy. They may be on to something.

Progress on the new On2 layout has been slow due to work and health issues. I had hoped to fly up for the Spring or Fall track weekend this year, but I will be unable to make it this year. I am hoping to make it in 2010.

All the best,
Matt Latham

By the way what a potato car? Plus does anyone have any photos of WW&F milk and potato cars? I would like to see them! ??? ::) :D

According to the book I have, Two Feet to Tidewater, there were 10 Potato Cars, numbered 501 to 510. They were rebuilt from W&Q Flat cars (originally built by Portland in 1894) into potato cars in 1910-1911. Basically a box car with a stove in them to provide heat to keep the potatoes from freezing.

I do not have any pictures of them to post, but the books I have on the WW&F show the potato cars as a box car with a smoke stack on top.

As for the Turner Dairy Centre milk cars, I found a picture of Milk car #65 in the book, Two Feet to Tidewater, and it too has a smoke stack on the roof. I am guessing to keep the milk from freezing in the winter. The book says #65 was an insulated milk reefer, lettered for Turner Centre Dairy Assoc., built in 1906 by Portland.

Ah! I just found a drawing of Milk Car #65 in the book Two Feet to Tidewater, and it mentions that #65 was in service as a potato car in later years. According to the comments in the book, it was originally boxcar red with white lettering, then re-painted reefer yellow, with a green roof without lettering or numbers for potato service. And automatic couplers were added in approx. 1916.

No, I did not spell it incorrectly. The book spells it Centre.  ;)

Museum Discussion / Re: B&SR Socony Tank
« on: December 16, 2008, 11:46:56 PM »
FIOS???  ???

Hi Matthew,
 Verizon Fiber Optic Service. Verizon FiOS offers Internet, Phone, and TV service over a fiber optic cable.

Museum Discussion / Re: Somewhere down the road....
« on: December 15, 2008, 12:25:30 PM »
That is how it was when the original railroad was running. Just a flag stop, and it did not have a passing siding like the one that is there now. 

But I do like the idea of eventually having something else for visitors to see at Alna Center.

Museum Discussion / Re: Building new rolling stock for WW&F!
« on: December 15, 2008, 11:50:02 AM »

Thank you for the tank measurements. It is larger than I thought.

Museum Discussion / Re: Building new rolling stock for WW&F!
« on: December 12, 2008, 02:25:43 PM »

Very nice drawing. Thanks. I think I'll build a model of that in O scale.

Anyone have a rough estimate for the length and diameter of the tank?

Museum Discussion / Re: Steam snow plowing without a diesel?
« on: December 11, 2008, 12:42:52 AM »
could #9 once its runing could plow the snow?  ??? :) 8)

According to the WW&F Web site, #9 weighs 18 tons. By far the heaviest locomotive they have at this point in time. In theory, once they restore it to operating condition, and they put a plow on the front, it would be the best one for clearing snow when comparing all of them by weight. And using both #9 and #10 to clear snow would be a real fun to watch.

Of course when they build #11, (a replica of #7 that weighed 28 Tons), it would be the heaviest locomotive they have. 

All they need is money... And time...


Thanks for taking the time to upload your pictures to NERAIL. Nice shots of #7's boiler. I can't wait to see her run under steam again. Keep up the great work.

Museum Discussion / Re: Steam snow plowing without a diesel?
« on: December 11, 2008, 12:05:53 AM »
Would #10 even be heavy enough to plow on her own in a heavy snow like the ones I saw on youtube last year? I would think that it would have a very tough time by itself even if it did have a plow.

#10 is 12 Tons and #52 is 15 Tons so if #10 did have a plow, it's ability would be somewhat reduced when compared to #52. Ballpark it at 20% less would be my guess. And I am not taking tractive effort differences into account. Pure weight difference.

Museum Discussion / Re: Steam snow plowing without a diesel?
« on: December 10, 2008, 11:38:23 PM »
Do you mean NERAIL? Lots of video on YouTube and pictures on NERAIL Search for WW&F.

Museum Discussion / Re: Sheepscott property plan
« on: December 09, 2008, 11:00:39 AM »
 Thank you for re-posting the site plan.

 Thank you for the update.

Museum Discussion / Re: Sheepscott property plan
« on: December 08, 2008, 06:33:38 PM »
I thought the Sheepscot property plan was posted on the forum somewhere, but I can not seem to find it now. Anyone happen to know where the plan is on the Forum? I have tried searching, but have had no luck so far.

Thanks for any help.

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