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 Post subject: Re: Young'uns
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 12:06 am 

Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2009 4:12 am
Posts: 654
Location: cheyenne
Interesting and encouraging thread.....I started with the Thomas BOOKS...no animated TV series real reading required but the brilliant stories and illustrations have stayed with me forever, my dad encouraged all the trains and kits type hobbies which he loved too, we had no TV until 1978 ( a great thing that enabled me to pursue practical hobbies) I got involved in preservation in 1986 at the age of 20 when our local diesel passenger trains were removed from service, found a few like minded individuals and set ourselves a goal of obtaining ONE power car from one of the Hastings 6 car multiple unit sets. In 1988 we successfully bid on TWO complete 6 car sets, by 1991 we had 16 coaches in total, 5 power cars and 11 trailer cars and the 275,000 sq ft maintenance facility built for them when they were new in 1957 including a 25 ton overhead travelling crane. We now maintain locomotives and restore locomotives for mainline companies and private railways all over the UK and have a staff of about 20.
One of our diesel trains is restored and regularly running tours on the mainline all over Britain and has also run replacement services on its old route to London from Hastings.I lay all the blame on the Rev Wilbert Awdrey and his wonderful books...thankyou Sir.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-jgvZ3xi8w

Mike Pannell


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 Post subject: Re: Young'uns
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 1:57 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 31, 2013 4:11 pm
Posts: 270
This thread coming back up is a bit timely. A few days ago, my youngest asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I told her that when I was a little boy I wanted to be a steam locomotive engineer. This got me to thinking when did the steam bug bite me. I’m 45 so not a young’un but certainly well under the age that would have recollection of steam. There is a famous line in the Movie “Greatest Show on Earth” regarding the character played by Charlton Heston “He’s got saw dust in his veins” which of course was a reference to his love of the circus. Now for me I guess I have cinders in my veins.

I grew up in Atlanta, GA which blessed me by being right in the middle of “Steam’s Camelot” to borrow a phrase. I used to look forward to steam excursions like a kid waiting for Christmas. Also my Father was and still is a rail fan/circus fan and passed that on to his sons. My earliest memory of riding a train was in the final days of the Nancy Hanks circa 1971/1972. What I remember was my dad taking me to the dome car where I could see out. I could not take my eyes off of the engines up front. I was dusk and after the sun went down I can remember seeing crossing lights and as my dad tells me I would call out “dink bell” as I heard the crossing bells pass out side. You could say I was nurtured with trains and as such my affinity runs deep. Over the years we made whole vacations and trips dedicated to trains (God love my mother) the most memorable being a trip in 1973 when I was 5 to Colorado to take in: UP 8444 (as she was numbered then), The Rio Grande Zephyr, the C&S remnant at Central City, The Forney Transportation Museum, Colorado RR Museum, Manitou and Pike’s Peak RR, the Colorado Springs Incline that took you to the Zoo, The Cumbres and Toltec Scenic RR, and finally the Silverton branch of the Denver and Rio Grande RR (pre Durango and Silverton). Also living in Atlanta I was properly educated in the origins of the City as the beginning point of the State RR to Chattanooga. For those familiar with Atlanta, the city was landscaped by the RR’s. in the 1970’s there were still many LTL operations and mini yards sprinkled about along with the 3 major classification yards, and a passenger service yard along Marietta street the “Coach Yards”. But I digress, Unlike some who’ve posted, I was not taken to restoration projects to fetch tools for the volunteers – My dad is a fan that barely knows which is the business end of a hammer. I was far more mechanically inclined however, and in 1987 I got a chance through connections to spend a week “learning” about rail preservation/operation on the New Georgia Railroad. So there I was finally getting a chance to work on my childhood favorite S&A No. 750 the first steam loco I road behind. That week turned into 2 years. I got to do many things I never dreamed would happen, Obviously firing and working on trips but also shop work. From oiling and lubrication to pulling super heater units, to my most memorable task – dropping/setting the tender pin in the drawbar. That task required a slender individual to climb up in a small void between the coal bunker and the frame. The heavy pin is not exactly easy to manipulate so setting it was more of an exercise in controlled dropping. Luckily it fell into place correctly the first try, and I was able to squeeze back out from the tender after it was joined to the loco. I can say working on a Steam loco is dirty and can obviously be dangerous, so it not for everyone.

So as to the question where do we come from? I know that in my case my enthusiasm for steam came as a result of my father’s enthusiasm for railroading, exposure to steam and trains early and often, and the opportunity to develop my own level of interest. But then again, maybe it’s because I was born on the 106th anniversary of the Great Locomotive Chase (April 12). (Ironically my first child was born in Kennesaw GA.) So maybe just maybe it was destiny.


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 Post subject: Re: Young'uns
PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:17 pm 

Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2004 10:54 am
Posts: 728
Location: Tucson, Arizona
For me, my entry into railroads was living near the CNO&TP main in Chattanooga. First trains I saw were the big black and gray Southern Railway units. In high school and college, I spent my spare time working at TVRM-mostly as a paid part time employee. I did ride a couple of the Southern/NS excursions but never rode with the 4501. I did get to ride behind the "Big" 610 (as TVRM folks referred to the T&P 610 as) and working on/around the "Little" 610.

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"When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."- Conductor Nimrod Bell, 1896


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 Post subject: Re: Young'uns
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 1:12 pm 

Joined: Mon May 27, 2013 1:08 pm
Posts: 15
Location: Gloucester County, NJ
Youn'uns you say? Well then... the nerve of some people... just kidding! I'm Chad, i'm 18 (soon to be 19 on Black Friday), and I guess I might as well explain myself too. Yes, like most of us "young'uns" I grew up watching Thomas, etc. However, I always loved steam, and my parents helped me to realize this. Living in South Jersey, it is relatively easy to find steam in the area. My parents have taken me to Strasburg countless of times, Steamtown once every few years (I have pictures of me and my awesome sippy cup XD, and of my dad and I in the cab of 26 when she was under steam), and so on. I remember watching Petrex's series "Great American Train Rides", with railroads like California Western (back then I thought the skunk was a rooster, and the train was called the "Red Rooster"). Gradually, my interest faded, until my family took a trip up to Alaska, where we rode over the WP&YR up to the summit and back. After that, interest faded again. I finally started gaining interest again after riding NJT's ACES service. Soon after, I was given a point-and-shoot as a Christmas gift. Then... I began railfanning (and also started up my personal video production "identity", known as "Blue Comet Productions"). The point and shoot quickly was replaced by a camcorder, and I was then set on my interest of videography. I also met my two best friends during this time. Now look at me! I hosted my first photo charter with the NYS&W T&HS using 142, of their lovely passenger cars, and their caboose back on Labor Day Weekend, and it was a success! I'm happy that I've had my interest since I was that young, and hopefully I'll have a bit of a more memorable (positive) effect on the Railfan Community in the years to come!

A bit chaotic in my writing, but hopefully you get the message


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 Post subject: Re: Young'uns
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 2:11 pm 

Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2004 10:54 am
Posts: 728
Location: Tucson, Arizona
I've got photos of myself and brother in the cab of the Southern Railway passenger F units when they came through town on an exhibition train back in '86 for the Tennessee Bicentennial. Never bothered to have my picture taken in the cab of the steamers-never felt the need to do that. Best reward for a hard day's work was getting to run the 4501 or the 610 under the supervision of "Boss" A.P. Brock. Sadly, the good old days are gone. Nothing like running a locomotive with 220 tons of train or more behing you.

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"When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."- Conductor Nimrod Bell, 1896


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