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 Post subject: SP 3420
PostPosted: Sun Dec 31, 2006 3:54 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 9:35 am
Posts: 8139
Location: Wilton, NY
Display at El Paso in 1959. It would run again briefly for the bicentennial, then be set aside again.

http://www.rr-fallenflags.org/sp/sp-s3420ana.jpg


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Sun Dec 31, 2006 6:42 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:26 am
Posts: 4230
Location: Maine
Anyone know how much work had to go into fixing her up for the 1976 celebrations? Has she operated since, and if not, why not?

_________________
"It's only impossible until it's done." -Nelson Mandela


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Sun Dec 31, 2006 6:54 pm 

Joined: Sun Nov 05, 2006 11:14 am
Posts: 162
Location: Albuquerque, NM
She is beautiful other than her park engine paint scheme. What posses people to do that to steam locomotives in a park?


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2007 12:29 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 8:44 am
Posts: 689
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
At least the counterweights on the wheels aren't painted! I think it looks pretty good, actually.


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2007 2:53 am 

Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2004 11:16 am
Posts: 679
SP 3420 returned to operation between 1981 and 1985. The first event was the City of El Paso’s 4 Centuries ‘81 celebration. Its return to operation was a story in how much was not done as much as what was done. Work started in the early fall of 1980 with the locomotives removal from the display area in November. She was taken to Wyler Industrial where the 2” tubes were replaced (30 5 1/2” flues were retained) and all appliances were inspected and readied for service. The piston rings were missing so new cast iron ones were fabricated (apparently the SP had a practice of towing locomotives without the piston rings). A lot of this work was done by a large group of dedicated volunteers who seem to never end in their drive to see it operate again. The locomotive earned FRA certification in time to participate in the city celebration in July of 1981. It pulled the SP wrecker at El Paso and associated cars throu the Battan Trainway to start the celebration.
SP 3420 operated for special events including the rededication of El Paso Union Depot in 1982, a double header (for about 6 miles) with 4449 in June of 1984, and performed for the 1985 Railway & Locomotive Historical Society National convention in El Paso on the grounds of the Phelps Dodge Copper Refinery. She operated on certain weekends within the refinery until the end of 1985 and has not operated since.
SP 3420 (Baldwin August 1904 #24586) was originally El Paso & Northeastern (EP&NE) #171. EP&NE was an independent railroad constructed between El Paso, TX and Santa Rosa, NM. The EP & NE was purchased on July 1, 1905 by the El Paso & Southwestern (EP & SW) System which was owned by Phelps Dodge. She retained the number 171 until the 1913 system renumbering when she became 271. In 1924 the SP leased the EP&SW and 271 became 3420. It appears the locomotive spent most of its time on the SP as a switch engine. SP 3420 was one of the last two locomotives on the SP converted to oil from coal in April of 1951. She was placed on display in 1956 near the El Paso Union depot.
Today the locomotive resides in the Phelps Dodge Copper Refinery with the former Pullman James Watt, an SP dinner, 2 Santa Fe CE-2 cabooses and other freight equipment. The plant is not open to the public. With the City of El Paso not taking their ownership responsibility the locomotive will not operate for the foreseeable future. The locomotive would need a complete 1472 day inspection to return to operation.

Robby Peartree


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2007 11:10 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:58 pm
Posts: 978
any current pictures of her?
Thanks


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2007 2:40 pm 

Joined: Tue Oct 26, 2004 11:44 pm
Posts: 17
Location: Fort Worth Texas
It must be a Texas thing, there are several pictures in Steve Goen's new book MISS KATY in the Lone Star State that show working steam engines
4-6-2 ,2-8-2 even 0-6-0 and 0-8-0 that have bright silver smokeboxs, fireboxes ,white running board edges and white tires. These pictures were done between 1945 and 1952. It also seems that some of the T&NO [SP] also had this treatment in Texas. The greatgrandfather of my granddaughter on the other side of the family was a Santa Fe superintendent and said some Santa Fe engines for local events in Clebourne got the paint treatment temporarily till the next shopping.

mktjames in Texas


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2007 4:08 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 9:35 am
Posts: 8139
Location: Wilton, NY
Note, Robby Peartree was the prime mover of the restoration of the 3420. My date of operation for the bicentennial was incorrect. Robby has since gone on to work on other steam projects.


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2007 4:40 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 10:50 am
Posts: 399
I remember reading about this engine some years back.

If my memory serves, I think that there was a problem with the front tube sheet. The SP completely welded it in place and the FRA inspector didn't like it or something like that. Someone please correct me if I am thinking incorrectly.

I believe that it was in TRAINS or RYPN magazine.

Everyone have a Happy New Year.

JD Johnson, Morehead and North Fork Railroad Historian


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2007 5:00 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2004 11:16 am
Posts: 679
I got involved in the leadership of the Southwest Chapter in the early 1990’s. I was only ten years old when 3420 participated in 4 centuries ’81 and I did not get involved with 3420 until March of 1985. The group that pulled 3420 out of the park was started almost by accident. The story that I understand was Chris Stark and David Scruggs were painting the locomotive during the summer of 1980 and Dana Ray approached them and a discussion began. During the conversation Dana asked the question if they thought the locomotive could run again and the answer was yes. Pretty soon things snowballed into an all out effort to get the locomotive out of the park and operating again. The City of El Paso formed the El Paso Historical Railroad Board to actually oversee the project. The Southwest Chapter of the Railway and Locomotive Historical Society was formed so the volunteers would have a group to belong to. As word got out more and more people got involved. A number of retired and active railroaders got involved and the results were that a lot of talented and dedicated people made it possible for 3420 to operate again.
For those worried about the future of the industry consider this. The thing I take most from the time I have been able to give towards SP 3420 is the people who helped me over the years. With the locomotive parked in a copper refinery even getting to see the locomotive was difficult. Yet, Bill Spoon and George Bailey (the upper management of the refinery in 1985) both gave me the opportunity to work on 3420 in spite of the “risks” of having a 13/14 year old in the plant. By doing so I began a journey that few kids have taken. Plant employees like Al Lafayette, Johnny Knight, Bill Slater, and many others helped me in many ways by teaching me a lot about the industrial world.
In 1985, retired railroaders were still involved and I learned the value of both passing down information and the evolutions of trades. A particular memory was the bending of an injector pipe. The refinery seem to have about a half dozen volunteers behind a retired SP pipe fitter traveling around their C&R (Construction & Repair) shop learning about what it took to bend and make the pipe. Even with Alex Eason’s health issues he was willing to teach another group of people how to operate. Other railroaders such as Fred Gherer and Jim Efaw (for who the siding on the Tucumcari line is named after) both helped in many ways no matter the age, experience level, or abilities. What mattered is that we were willing to try our best to help the 3420 project.
One thing to consider is when 3420 first entered the copper refinery in 1983 the plant was involved in a bitter strike. It was still on in 1985 when I started working on 3420. It was an interesting time and I will never forget it.


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 3:34 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2004 11:16 am
Posts: 679
With the patience and understanding of Bob Yarger, we managed to get a news article published in the May-June 1995 edition of Locomotive & Railway Preservation. The locomotive faced two boiler problems, one from a “crack” behind the steam dome where the dynamo currently sits which was repaired in 1990 and the front tube sheet. The locomotive front tube sheet is fillet welded (non-penetrating) to the boiler shell. They cut the old tube sheet just beyond the rivet line and created a grove on at the widest horizontal line to slide in the new sheet in horizontally and then rotated the sheet in to place. The welded the tube sheet did not show up on any documentation that we had. At the time no one we talked to had seen this before. Because we could not prove a safety factor of 4 we were dead in the water. Since then, several people have told me that the N&W had a standard for this type of installation and other railroads seem to have at least experimented with it. It appears that 3420 may have been such an experiment on the SP.
Today the locomotive would need to go thru a complete 1472 day inspection to become FRA compliant. With the discovery of the N&W paperwork we now have an industry standard for the tube sheet. We found some thin areas (0.020”) on the back head during thickness testing in 1990 that may need replacement
For the record, the FRA MP&E inspector out of El Paso is a very conscious person. He is fair, open, and honest with the organization about his like concerns. I have always felt that the door is always open to the SWC of the R&LHS to discuss any situation with him. By having open and honest relations with the MP&E inspector we were able to solve a lot of problems.


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 6:13 pm 

Joined: Sun Nov 05, 2006 11:14 am
Posts: 162
Location: Albuquerque, NM
I know the MP&E guy you are talking about. He is good guy. I have been around one of the MP&E guys that were itching to write a violation or screw you around just because he could. He is no longer an FRA man. That makes for a LONG day...


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 Post subject: Re: SP 3420
PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2007 2:49 am 

Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2004 11:16 am
Posts: 679
If you go to the site http://www.elpasorails.org/ the cover photo is of 3420 in 2004 with a 1936 SP box car and a Santa Fe CE-2 caboose. Spend some time looking at the restoration work on EP & SW #1.

Sincerely,
Robby Peartree


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