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Messages - Stephen Piwowarski

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I just watched this short video on the development of signaling, train movement and  interlocking systems in the UK. It seems like a good intro from the POV of someone who’s never worked on a signaled railway or a UK railway but I’d be curious to learn more about the UK train movement control in general.

Work and Events / Re: Engine House Construction.
« on: March 17, 2021, 10:51:19 PM »
I think we can all agree to find some middle ground on track 2.

Museum Discussion / Re: A letter of encouragement
« on: February 19, 2021, 11:11:21 PM »
From February 13 on TripAdvisor, regarding Steam & Sleighs:

'Very accommodating staff, fun ride through the woods Sleigh ride was terrific. Very knowledgeable and willing to share info. Fun for adults and kids.'

5 out of 5 stars.

Well done all!

Typically, the Wiscasset, Waterville and Farmington Railway Museum extends an invitation to anyone willing to lend a hand to a Spring Work Weekend in late April. It's an informal affair, as much a reunion as it is a time for collective labor. This informality makes it especially difficult to hold such a gathering in the midst of the ongoing pandemic for a multitude of reasons. Instead, the Railway will be holding a series of volunteer work days on Saturdays from April through June. Each day will focus on undertaking specific tasks to enter the 2021 operating season in an excellent state of repair. The exact work activities for these work days will be decided upon in the coming weeks.

Updates and information pertaining to the workdays will be found at Important details will also make their way onto this forum thread.

We look forward to working with you once again on the Sheepscot Valley Narrow Gauge.

Steve Piwowarski

US Two Footers / Re: WWI trench loco in the US
« on: January 31, 2021, 04:16:32 AM »
The restoration of this locomotive is an awesome tale! For those of you who recall the Byron Railroad engines, which were ‘home built’ engines made from a kit of parts including trench engine frames and gear along with a bunch of standard gauge appliances and jewelry, this is one of those engines, restored to its trench loco origins.

An amazing tale for sure- wouldn’t it be a neat visitor to a WWI reenactment.

Volunteers / Re: January 2021 Work Reports
« on: January 26, 2021, 11:39:41 AM »
Ed, that was a pretty clean dismount.

Museum Discussion / Re: "Top of (the) Mountain" to ya!
« on: January 25, 2021, 10:42:37 PM »
A good question to ask! I had been calling it Top of Mountain, then I’ve heard people call it otherwise. The definitive answer should come from the timetable though.

Volunteers / Re: January 2021 Work Reports
« on: January 25, 2021, 06:44:18 PM »
Also going on this weekend and week: Nicole, Steve P. (and Johnny) cut, prepped and put a first coat of primer on brand new station signs for Trout Brook and Top of the Mountain. The signs will receive more primer during the week before they are prepped for their base coat.

Work and Events / Re: WW&F No. 11 - Official Work Thread
« on: January 14, 2021, 04:09:49 PM »
and the last steam locomotive built in the state of Maine since Portland Co. built B&SR #5 in 1906!

Work and Events / Re: WW&F No. 52 - Official Work Thread
« on: November 30, 2020, 10:57:14 PM »

Those actually do come in above the minimum requirement, but not overly so. If they didn't then places like Essex wouldn't be allowed to use them.

Interesting Bill, when I was working on the Berkshire Scenic, I was under the impression that our FRA inspector wouldn’t allow them for that reason. If they are allowed, that would be such a nice choice for 52. In my opinion, you couldn’t ask for a better sound that isn’t so harsh as to destroy people’s ears on open cars etc.

Work and Events / Re: WW&F No. 52 - Official Work Thread
« on: November 30, 2020, 10:06:37 PM »
And just think, those aren't anything more than truck horns. Just imagine if we could get the 5 chime train horn that Maine Narrow Gauge has. I love that thing. Believe it or not, the horns on the 52 should actually be louder than what they are now. The FRA requires a train horn/whistle to be between 90-92 decibals.


I’ve always been a big fan of the Nathan air whistles that the New Haven used on many of their engines. That being said, I don’t believe that those particular “horns” meet the FRA’s decibel requirement. I think that is why you don’t see many of them operating in preservation.


Work and Events / Re: B&SR Box Car 56 - Official Work Thread
« on: November 29, 2020, 10:55:03 PM »
Not knowing much about the B&SR's operations, I'll not say anything definite, but I will say that it doesn't seem too likely that full size horses were shipped in those cars. Full size horses measure about 4.5 to 6 feet at the ridge between their shoulders with their head and neck being quite a bit taller.

Most bovines, on the other hand, would comfortably fit through a 72" or so height door.

Museum Discussion / Re: Switch lanterns on high mast switches
« on: November 26, 2020, 06:21:00 PM »
Also, for those of you who aren't familiar, you might be interested in W.T. Kirkman- they are heavily involved in a number or railway restoration projects and their products are excellent.

Check their site out here:


Volunteers / Re: Telephone improvement at Rose Wood Crossing
« on: November 13, 2020, 06:08:41 PM »
Are the photos showing up for you at all Keith? If so, scroll right- I have to figure out how to resize!

Volunteers / Re: Telephone improvement at Rose Wood Crossing
« on: November 13, 2020, 05:57:14 PM »
Today Johnny P. and I went up to Rosewood Crossing and installed some grade stakes John M. had prepared for better marking the mag phone line in that section. We had a good system... he brought stakes to me as I hammered them in. After finishing up we took a walk to ToM and saw the new MoW work just north of the yard limit. It looks great.

On the way back I photographed and inspected all of our signs between ToM and AC for potential repairs.

A nice adventure!


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