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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 1:57 am 

Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2006 2:21 am
Posts: 544
Location: Yardley, PA (near Phila)
superheater wrote:
Accountants have the last word. Why don't people get this?


I think they DO get that, but they also likely recall that these steam engines had ran in the past and assume that if it was feasible then, it could be feasible today.


SteamPWR wrote:
Right now we have our hands full with the 425. I wouldn't hold your breath waiting for the 02 to run. The best thing to do is buy tickets when the 425 runs and show your support.


I'm still gonna hold my breath - there was "talk" and nothing more, but something more then nothing regarding restoration of 2102. As I had heard bits and pieces it had something to do with a hoped for boon in business AND as SteamPWR suggests - a strong showing of support for 425.

One unmentioned benefit to running 2102, and assuming it would be allowed, would be
the fact that that engine could haul the longer passenger trains without needing extra diesel helpers - or do they need those still for HEP? Either way, other large operating 4-8-4's are out there - and running on someone else's tracks which proves there is some viability to the thought of riding behind 2102 once again in PA. Hey, they could always pull freight with it : )

/Mitch

SteamPWR wrote:
Right now we have our hands full with the 425. I wouldn't hold your breath waiting for the 02 to run. The best thing to do is buy tickets when the 425 runs and show your support.


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425 - 2102
PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 3:55 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 24, 2006 2:47 pm
Posts: 83
Location: US of A
One glimmer of hope for 2102 at this point is Mr. Muller's comment to me at the company Christmas Party last December, when we were discussing the steam locomotives. He said he would ''like to see the 2102 run again.'' After the 425 is finished, he wants to get the 2102 into the shop and tear it down for the boiler inspection. There is NO time-frame for when this might happen, and there is no projection of where the restoration will go beyond that point until the results of the boiler inspection are known.

The last time 2102's boiler was that far apart was over the winter of 1987-88. All the tubes were out, and the interior of the barrel was sand-blasted. I climbed down into the empty boiler barrel through the steam-dome opening to get some photos of the firebox from this unusual perspective, seeing it suspended by all the stay-bolts. I was a bit nervous about squeezing back out through that dome opening! Gravity was on my side going in.

(Mike Tillger was involved with that work in '88, and he may wish to comment further on what was done at that time.)

2102 needs other work besides the boiler, but it is not the ''basket case'' that some on here like to speculate. Of the 4 surviving T-1's, the '02 has spent much more time stored inside (out of the weather) than the other 3, for what its worth.

Steve G. R&N employee.


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 4:07 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 24, 2006 2:47 pm
Posts: 83
Location: US of A
The diesel helpers used on the current 425 trips are mostly for a little ''boost'', and especially for dynamic brake on our long down-hill runs. I have been one of those ''booster'' engineers for alot of the recent years' trips. It is the best seat in the house for enjoying the 425's ''concerts''.
Plus, on our Jim Thorpe trips, there is mass-quantities of switching of the consist between segments of the trips, which the diesel is used for.
The H-E-P for the passenger train is provided by a large generator in our former PRR RPO car #6503, which I had repainted all the PRR lettering, for a while a few years ago. It now blends in with the rest of the train.


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 9:46 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:06 am
Posts: 483
Location: NE PA
Superheater,
In my humble opinion, you could not be more wrong in this case! Accounting has nothing to do with Andy Muller's decision to restore the 2102, it is his and if and when he is ready to play with his full size toys it will be returned to operation. There is no way to operate a large steam locomotive at a profit for a long period of time, it has to be subsidized by some form of passion! (volunteers, grants, etc.)

My 2 cents, as a former CMO for BM&R and RBMN during the early steam years,
Mike Tillger


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 11:55 am 

Joined: Sat Jan 22, 2005 9:41 pm
Posts: 52
Location: Hamburg, PA.
Getting back to the 425, the pony truck was shipped out for overhaul by contractor. The trailing truck wheel set has also been shipped out for overhaul by contractor. In house, the main air compressor is under going a rebuild. A new blower has been installed. Two sections in the bottom half of the smoke box have been replaced with new steel. Progress is being made in spite of the fact that ONLY two people are permitted to work on her. I think you'll see her run this year. When? I think that's going to hinge on when we get the pony truck and trailing truck axle back more than anything else right now.

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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 1:04 pm 

Joined: Thu Jun 17, 2010 9:31 am
Posts: 515
Quote:

I'm still gonna hold my breath - there was "talk" and nothing more, but something more then nothing regarding restoration of 2102. As I had heard bits and pieces it had something to do with a hoped for boon in business AND as SteamPWR suggests - a strong showing of support for 425.



Excellent point. It helps to get the word out about planned excursions, buy passes as gifts for friends and family, etc. It also would probably help if 2102 had a "friends of" chapter, to raise funds, awareness, and if possible form a 501c3 to qualify for preservation grants.


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 8:25 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 8:10 am
Posts: 2413
Is it me or does it seem unlikely that $1.5 million of work was required to get #425 on the road a few years back? I am sure it cost a significant amount, but given what similar locomotives in similar condition have cost the past few years, it seems high. Was this the "offiicial" figure from the railroad?

Rob


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 8:57 pm 

Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2007 6:01 pm
Posts: 52
No


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 8:42 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:19 pm
Posts: 1735
Location: Pottstown,Pa.
Look folks its not complicated. The railroad is 100% owned by Andy Muller so he is free to make any/all decisions as he desires.

He ( and his team) have made a big commercial success of trackage the big boys didn't want. He has surely shown in the past that he has a love for steam and his current investments in the 425 reconfirm that.

He also owns and enjoys flying a private jet and other interests. If Andy decides that he'd rather invest some serious funds in the jet vs. 2102 that's certainly his and his alone decision.

We steam lovers should be grateful that the steam flame still lives in his heart and that the 425 will run again soon.

Thanks Andy, for all you've done and will do for steam.

Ross Rowland


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 3:47 pm 

Joined: Sun Mar 08, 2009 4:06 pm
Posts: 52
Location: Chicago IL
Pardon me to ask but I have a DVD video of Reading Railroad #2102 when she operated in excursion service under the ownership of Andy Muller in the 80's (its called "The American Northern" by Berkshire Productions) and in the video I noticed that when every time 2102 crossed a long river bridge her whistle gave like a haunting shricking load high pitch cry but when she was on land he whistle sounded different like a low tone whistle with a middle pitch tone. Can anyone explain why?

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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 4:43 pm 

Joined: Mon May 22, 2006 7:42 pm
Posts: 148
Location: Newark, Delaware
Perhaps the engineer would blow the hooter when crossing bridges. I seemed to recall both whistles on the engine simultaneously.


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 4:44 pm 

Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 8:47 pm
Posts: 482
Matt3985 wrote:
Pardon me to ask but I have a DVD video of Reading Railroad #2102 when she operated in excursion service under the ownership of Andy Muller in the 80's (its called "The American Northern" by Berkshire Productions) and in the video I noticed that when every time 2102 crossed a long river bridge her whistle gave like a haunting shricking load high pitch cry but when she was on land he whistle sounded different like a low tone whistle with a middle pitch tone. Can anyone explain why?


No pardon necessary. Granted, it's not a question related to the topic, but it geared readers away from the budding argument in earlier posts, which, if left unchecked, will eventually result in this thread being locked.

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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 2:15 pm 

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2004 10:28 pm
Posts: 212
Matt3985 wrote:
Pardon me to ask but I have a DVD video of Reading Railroad #2102 when she operated in excursion service under the ownership of Andy Muller in the 80's (its called "The American Northern" by Berkshire Productions) and in the video I noticed that when every time 2102 crossed a long river bridge her whistle gave like a haunting shricking load high pitch cry but when she was on land he whistle sounded different like a low tone whistle with a middle pitch tone. Can anyone explain why?


Two whistles on the engine at the same time. The Reading freight hooter (authentic to the T1s, btw) was used some, and the chime was used at different times. NKP 765 has operated with two whistles before also.
Kevin


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425? (For Mike Tillger)
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 11:00 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:54 pm
Posts: 1821
Mike, I can't disagree with what you said about the owner of a large Steamer being the owner of its destiny. Some clarification is in order:

I really meant to address sentiments such as these:

Steam PWR
Right now we have our hands full with the 425. I wouldn't hold your breath waiting for the 02 to run. The best thing to do is buy tickets when the 425 runs and show your support.

CanPac2317
Jason hit the nail on the head-as of right now, they don't do enough running enough of the time to justify a restoration of 2102. They don't run enough long enough to require that much power.

6-18003

Excellent point. It helps to get the word out about planned excursions, buy passes as gifts for friends and family, etc. It also would probably help if 2102 had a "friends of" chapter, to raise funds, awareness, and if possible form a 501c3 to qualify for preservation grants.


There seems to be a thought that one can demonstrate enough demand to promise an economic inducement for a 2102 return to service. It is simply not possible. My point is a simple back of the napkin calculation shows that that there is no rational expectation that a a large restoration will ever even be close to economically justifiable.

The only good reasons to restore a big engine is either because its owner wants to see it run and/or wants to provide a gift to the railfan community. When 425 runs again, by all means buy tickets, I know I will-the R&N always provides excellent value-just don't think that your purchase will provide a reasonable expectation of economic profit sufficient to make the difference. I'm not even sure in the current environment, that governments have the $$$ to make grants to a 501c3 and with "green" all the rage, one could imagine corporate grantors not even giving the time of day to a steam locomotive.

If 2102 runs again, its a gift from its owner to those that get to see and enjoy it. You might offset a small portion of the costs with tickets, but you will never make it profitable at current ticket prices, even if coal is free.

Also, as I find myself in absolute and unqualified agreement with Ross, get on the first run, I think that agreement might be an omen of the impending apocalypse. (12-21-12)?


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 Post subject: Re: Any update on R&N #425?
PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 12:31 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:07 am
Posts: 699
Location: Philadelphia Pa
superheater wrote:
Math time...

Lets assume an "average" restoration is 1.5m

If you sell tickets @ $69.00, which has been whatthe R&N has been selling them at...

You need to sell 21,740 tickets just to recoup the cost. That is 37 trips with 10 coaches (assuming you have 10) more or less sold out with 60 people in each coach.



You're forgetting that each of those trips have a cost themselves to recoup....try doubling that number for them to turn a profit and recoup ALL operation & restoration costs. It is a business, after all, not a tourist railroad.


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