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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 5:44 pm 
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Location: Pac NW, via North Florida
Jennie K wrote:
None of the 36" Crowns were ever built to burn coal, Monroe built those boilers to be fired with propane. I don't know if there is going to be enough grate area to maintain steam using coal.

Yeah, me neither. I remember taking a lot of time watching the ones at Six Gun Territory in Ocala one weekend and even as a kid at the time, I could tell they were propane fired. Took a good look at one of the same ones later when it was in Atlanta and noticed how the fireboxes looked on the inside. I couldn't imagine firing one with coal, but I don't profess to be any type of steam expert.

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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 7:02 pm 

Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2007 12:47 pm
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Location: Arizona
I used to run a 3' gauge Crown at an amusement park in Tempe, AZ. From what I understand, we had the very first 3' engine Crown ever built, in around 1962-3.

It was built as a coal burner. There are 8mm movies shot of the Golden Spike Ceremony showing it burning coal.

It was converted to oil firing fairly soon after they started running.


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 9:44 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2004 10:12 pm
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Location: Wadsworth, Ohio
To answer a couple of questions: 1) she was built as an oil burner; 2) we are converting her to coal because it is easier & cheaper for us to use; 3) we are aware of the Crowns' poor steaming in some situations, and are rebuilding the smokebox (added 18" length), and also adding a new, Porta-style blast pipe, new design petticoat pipe, new table plate & screens. The paint scheme is somewhat based on the Eureka, and also the early "Baldwin Paint Scheme #1", which will include wheels patterned after (but not identical to) Baldwin's design for their early drive wheels. The photo of the wheels is by Cody Cagle, who is in charge of the rebuilding of the Crown. The design & painting is by volunteer Randy Holland, who has been donating much of his work. Randy & Cody did most of the painting of the wheels. The cab was built & installed by Jerry Turbyfill, Vice President of the ET&WNC Historical Society.


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 10:21 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 1:19 am
Posts: 198
Location: Decatur, GA
Phil Raynes wrote:
To answer a couple of questions: 1) she was built as an oil burner; 2) we are converting her to coal because it is easier & cheaper for us to use; 3) we are aware of the Crowns' poor steaming in some situations, and are rebuilding the smokebox (added 18" length), and also adding a new, Porta-style blast pipe, new design petticoat pipe, new table plate & screens.


Did you guys have your blast pipe engineered, or did you use a design from a locomotive of similar size?

Is Al (forgetting his last name, guy who worked on Rachel) still around?

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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 11:04 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 8:31 am
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Location: South Carolina
Phil Raynes wrote:
To answer a couple of questions: 1) she was built as an oil burner; 2) we are converting her to coal because it is easier & cheaper for us to use; 3) we are aware of the Crowns' poor steaming in some situations, and are rebuilding the smokebox (added 18" length), and also adding a new, Porta-style blast pipe, new design petticoat pipe, new table plate & screens.


Sweet! Any photos of the new exhaust arrangement will be greatly appreciated.

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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 19, 2020 3:36 am 

Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:41 am
Posts: 3707
Location: Inwood, W.Va.
Been a little while since we've had news of this project--

Is there anything new that's available to see?


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2020 2:42 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:41 am
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Location: Inwood, W.Va.
This photograph appeared recently on the Facebook page of the Doe River Gorge Ministries. Apparently a lot of progress has been made, and a comment in another forum suggested Doe River's steam crew is hoping to have her running for a narrow gauge convention next year.

The page where this came from suggested questions about this engine should be sent directly to Doe River Gorge Ministries, an understandable request to get things officially right, and to avoid bugging the wrong people, including the steam crew, who have their hands full as it is!

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2020 3:18 pm 

Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2016 10:17 pm
Posts: 97
They had steaming issues simply because small grate area?

How much smaller is this than something like the Eureka? Boiler seems to be smaller diameter


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2020 4:19 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:15 pm
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Does this line have any grades?


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2020 6:24 pm 
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Location: Pac NW, via North Florida
Crescent-Zephyr wrote:
Does this line have any grades?

Yes, indeedy it does. From the bottom of the grade to the top I'm not familiar with the exact grade but it's constant and not light.

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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2020 9:54 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:15 pm
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p51 wrote:
Crescent-Zephyr wrote:
Does this line have any grades?

Yes, indeedy it does. From the bottom of the grade to the top I'm not familiar with the exact grade but it's constant and not light.


So... how is this possibly going to work?


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2020 9:09 pm 

Joined: Sat Oct 02, 2004 5:48 pm
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Location: Hickory, NC
The grade from Tunnel 2 (essentially the current starting point) to Pardee Point in the center of the gorge, varies as much as 3-4%, with the grade right before Tunnel 3 being the steepest.

Matt Bumgarner
SE NG & Shortline Museum
Alexander Chapter-NRHS


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2020 1:00 am 

Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 8:29 pm
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When the little tourist operation was in this location...back in the 1970's?...they had a few tiny engines, maybe a Crown steamer and a little-bitty diesel (I assume) switcher. SOP was one on each end of a few homemade cars. It was wheels a spinning and lots of cursing to get the train over the line. I distantly knew an owner (were there more then one?) and apparently he was blindsided by this situation and clueless about how railroads worked. It is a beautiful place...great place to hike.
T7


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2020 11:13 am 

Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 11:42 pm
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Take a look at the Crown that operates at the Omaha Zoo. There seem to be some stiff grades on this line. This line is 30" gauge I believe.


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 Post subject: Re: Doe River George Getting a Crown Steamer?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2020 11:50 am 
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Termite7 wrote:
When the little tourist operation was in this location...back in the 1970's?...they had a few tiny engines, maybe a Crown steamer and a little-bitty diesel (I assume) switcher. SOP was one on each end of a few homemade cars. It was wheels a spinning and lots of cursing to get the train over the line. I distantly knew an owner (were there more then one?) and apparently he was blindsided by this situation and clueless about how railroads worked. It is a beautiful place...great place to hike.
T7

It wasn't a crown they ran ther eback in the day.
Image
Here is video of the operation, circa 1973:
https://youtu.be/XDuZcdQdn54
The line had an interesting history, one I hope someday someone will write a book about.
The ET&WNC folded their 3-foot line in late 1950 and after the tracks were yanked up, it became a road for a while. At some point in the 60s, the tracks we re-laid with second hand rail and ties.
Initially called Doe River Gorge Playland, the park didn't do as well as the nearby Tweetsie and was sold and renamed Hillbilly World sometime in 1971. The "Hillbilly World," billboard at the entrance could seen along the highway for many years after it folded up. My family used to go to Elizabethton each summer or Christmas from Florida where I grey up and we always went right past that aging billboard. You could just make out the large house at the base and the old Bemberg water tower that had bene moved to the site, but little else, from the highway.
It all started rotting away until the Christian camp bought the whole place and started rehabilitating stuff in the 90s.
I had an uncle who rode the tourist line there but sadly he passed away a few years ago and I never got to ask him details about it. My entire family hiked much of the remaining tracks from the other (Blevins) end of the gorge in about 1980 or 81. I noticed even then as a kid that the tracks looked like they had just been used a few years before. Little did any of us know then that the last gasp of the operation (which from what I've read looked like a combination of flea marked and cheap travelling carnival at the lower end) was just a few years before.
I was pretty ticked to find out not long ago that I could have ridden this as a kid, if only we'd known.
The Christian camp, along with the ET&WNC historical society folks, have done an amazing job with the line. I truly doubt they'll ever run anything onto the twin steel bridges over the Doe River at the top of the gorge, but we can always hope someday the useable tracks will get that far again.

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