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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:06 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 27, 2013 3:55 am
Posts: 103
Pegasuspinto wrote:
One valid question is, if the wheels DO turn, and the pistons aren't so tight as speculated, and the thing starts to roll......uncontrolled..... It's a real bad thing to just assume it can't possibly roll free just because it hasn't moved in many years......


This seems to be the least possible scenario to me.


Mike


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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:43 pm 

Joined: Wed Feb 05, 2014 6:30 am
Posts: 47
I don't believe for a minute that the pistons or valves will move unless someone has been pouring oil/diesel down the blastpipe over many months. The only way to move the loco without causing severe damage is to remove the main and eccentric rods and I doubt the average contractor has the skills/tools or time to do this. As for the loco rolling away uncontrollably the phrase "snowball in hell comes to mind" but if anyone is worried it only requires a check chain. For moving the loco I would suggest using a winch rather than simply yanking at it with a Caterpillar or somesuch. Even a large handwinch/'comealong' might move it if the journals were well oiled. Just my 2c worth based on the best part of 50 yrs experience.
Ray.


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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Wed Mar 21, 2018 4:43 pm 

Joined: Wed Jun 26, 2013 7:20 pm
Posts: 197
Quote:
The only way to move the loco without causing severe damage is to remove the main and eccentric rods and I doubt the average contractor has the skills/tools or time to do this.


Sure he does....every contractor has a cutting torch!


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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 12:24 am 

Joined: Thu May 24, 2012 1:37 pm
Posts: 1203
Quote:
But I don’t understand how the funding that Jason has raised could be put into this plan, as you say. Is there a way for Jason to integrate his plan for restoration and operation into this Port Arthur based plan?"


I didn't say. Clearly none of the money Jason has raised from his GoFundMe can be fairly applied to anything that does not fulfil the original conditions.

By 'renewed GoFundMe' I meant that the new Friends organization would set up and conduct a new GoFundMe campaign specific to its situation and needs ... and describing precisely what arrangements it would have with the City as recourse in case of 'problems' with the donated money being spent.

By 'resources' I meant the base of donors and volunteers, and the 'call chain', that became established for Jason's GoFundMe. I was not talking in any way about the funds that campaign raised. Even if many of the donors have been 'turned off' by the evolution of the situation, and by the behavior of certain people involved, I think there is still at least the framework of an effective campaign to be undertaken.

MEANWHILE, I can't imagine that those journals aren't pitted on the bottom side, and that even a couple of turns under load will dramatically score the brasses. I thought the 'usual' procedure would be to jack the engine, at least 'whiz' the journals, then give them a reasonable polish to get rid of any sharp edges (and perhaps fill the worst pits with epoxy or other temporary filler to permit hydrodynamic film formation) and then butter in some reasonably thick oil or even grease to allow at least the few turns necessary to move off the deflicted spot. I don't know if there is any good way to do this with the locomotive weight pressing the brasses against the journals. Just spraying or buttering lube into the cracks won't get it done right.

My opinion is to use whatever expedient combination of penetrating oil, heat, and attitude adjustment is needed to remove the crosshead keys. Taking the eccentric rod down seems comparatively easy; you'd need to have the forward end of the main all the way out of the crosshead before it made any sense to take the crank itself off and work the rod laterally off, so I would think that the keys would be a step quicker than, say, trying to get the crosshead pin out with a portapower ram or similar persuader. But shouldn't we be discussing the steps to do it right, openly, on this forum if people in Port Arthur are attentively reading along for guidance?

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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 12:56 am 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2608
Is the idea of greasing the rails and sliding it totally nuts? What if they were to block the wheels to be certain they won’t turn and then drag her on well oiled rails? Would it flat spot the drivers? I don’t know how heavy this loco is, weight on the drivers would matter.


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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 1:39 am 

Joined: Wed Mar 31, 2010 12:02 am
Posts: 282
I saw an 0-4-0 moved last Summer from its display track in a park for the first time in 60 years. All rods and motion was left in place and oiled. It took several tries, but the trailer winch evetually moved her up onto the trailer. A good tug from the winch would turn the wheels a bit, then they'd stop and slide. Stop the winch, start again, and they'd turn a bit more. After one full rotation, they turned fairly freely afterwards.

Also, if I recall correctly, one of the first videos that Jason uploaded showed a lot of welds on the flanges of some of the wheels. If thats the case, wouldn't the tires of the drivers have to be replaced? In that case, greasing the rails and sliding her might not be a bad option. A little flat spot shouldn't really matter, eh?

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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 8:24 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:19 am
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Location: southeastern USA
And given the axles will need turning and crown brasses replaced to fit, let's not worry too much about a bit of scoring either. Dennis D created a procedure of dropping the cellars and, using flapwheels, sanding the pitted surfaces down to facets which works well.

Getting the Xhead keys out and piston rods loose after decades of exposure is not a fast or easy process - lots of penetrant, cycling heat and pressure over time generally required. I think it may in fact be easier to remove the heads, lube the pistons and valves with PB or some such for several months, pour a penetrating oil down the ports or fog the inboard cylinders with it, and get the pistons loose enough to slide instead. Every situation is different, but the common element is the time you need to let the penetrant do its job. This seems to be the critical thing lacking in this case.

Obviously, a crane is probably the best option, but unless you are moving the locomotive into a shop for an overhaul..... costly.

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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 12:30 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2004 10:34 pm
Posts: 755
To me PA has one of the best contractors to do the move on site already. That is Jason and crew. Jason knows his way around this stuff it is what he does for a living. Not trying to get Jason more work but he is involved and would be a very good contractor to have move the loco or at least act as a consultant to the contractor they hire. He is already "on the ground"so to speak and has a relationship with the city. If PA continues the idea of keeping the loco in their park this would be a very good option to consider. To many of us Jason is a real young guy. But he knows his stuff and has been working as a contractor for many years now. Just a thought? Actually he would be PA answer to do the whole cosmetic restoration from move to final paint job. It would be done right and probably cheaper than it would cost to have schlock contractor come in and do a lesser job!

No offence meant towards the powers that be in PA, but I don't hold my breath that they would use Jason and crew. Bureaucracy seldom moves in a way that would make sense, saves money and do what it professes to do. In this case preserve the locomotive. On the other hand, you never know. They might be more reasonable then we give them credit for? They are not railfans and their conversion has been very recent.

The other problem like Dave aludes too, is the time it will take to ready for a move. The work would indeed include long term preservation but the time it would take could get in the way of "we need this done now". Anyway just a thought or two. Regards, John.


Last edited by John Risley on Fri Mar 23, 2018 12:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 12:31 pm 

Joined: Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:08 am
Posts: 491
Dave wrote:
Every situation is different, but the common element is the time you need to let the penetrant do its job. This seems to be the critical thing lacking in this case.

Obviously, a crane is probably the best option, but unless you are moving the locomotive into a shop for an overhaul..... costly.


Yes, the current TCEQ extended deadline for the remediation to be complete is 4-20 so they have about three weeks from the bid opening date of 3-26 to get 503 out of the way.

If Mr. Sobczynski and other similar professionals submitted bids which detailed the costs and timelines for the two options, craning it out of the way and partial disassembly/proper lubrication, and also discussed the dangers to 503 if the move is not performed correctly, it would give the City a better idea of what they are dealing with. A realistic cost estimate for a proper move and the abatement may make them reconsider Mr. Sobczynski's offer to remove 503 and pay $35K. If Port Arthur decides to continue on the more costly path of temporarily moving 503 to allow abatement, at least they have expert advice as to the timeline necessary to properly protect the historic artifact which they can use to apply for another extension from TCEQ.


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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 3:12 pm 

Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 2:22 pm
Posts: 1446
M&StL 2-8-0 #471 once sat on a spur track at the Klien Brickyard completely uncovered from approx. early 1950s to 1967. The property was sold and the new owner had a dozer shove the engine ahead about 250 ft. It rolled with the rods and pistons moving. I don’t know what effect it had on the running surfaces.

Perhaps the City of Port Arthur should be informed of the precautionary details of moving 503. I suspect that moving the engine is only seen as a challenge to provide sufficient tractive effort against it. Probably any medium sized dozer will do the trick.

It seems to me that there would be a great deal of cost difference between exercising due caution in avoiding damage while moving to a track made sufficient for permanent display; as opposed to simply pulling the engine, heedless to damage, onto a track sufficient to handle the move. I would suspect a cost difference of at least $50,000.


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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2018 3:44 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:42 pm
Posts: 2608
Ron Travis wrote:
It seems to me that there would be a great deal of cost difference between exercising due caution in avoiding damage while moving to a track made sufficient for permanent display; as opposed to simply pulling the engine, heedless to damage, onto a track sufficient to handle the move. I would suspect a cost difference of at least $50,000.


That's the reason for my suggestion of locking the wheels so they slide rather than turn. Yes, it could damage the driver tires, but as others have mentioned, they will probably be changed. Meanwhile, if the wheels aren't moving at all, then they and the pistons aren't being scored or otherwise damaged.


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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2018 11:19 pm 

Joined: Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:08 am
Posts: 491
Next Port Arthur City council meeting is 5:30 PM CDT on Tuesday 3-27. According to this article in the Port Arthur News, one of the many items up for discussion will be the contract for moving 503 so that the TCEQ-mandated abatement can be completed.

https://www.panews.com/2018/03/26/water-bills-and-moving-the-locomotive-at-pa-council-meeting/


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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2018 8:31 am 

Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 2:22 pm
Posts: 1446
It is interesting that the issue of spending public money on moving 503 will be in the same meeting as the issue of increased spending to get the water department out of the red along the general demands of utility rates. The contrast might highlight priorities.


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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:30 pm 

Joined: Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:08 am
Posts: 491
The City Council of Port Arthur approved Consent Resolution PR 20070: RELOCATION OF ENGINE 503 AND TENDER IN BRYAN PARK without any discussion at the public session. The 129 page document included in the meeting agenda was posted on 3-23 and so it does not note the winning bidder or the cost. Work to relocate 503 so that the soil may be remediated is to begin on April 6. Scope/description of work begins on page 119 with a description of the track to be installed and ends on page 122 with brief instructions on "Possible Method of Moving the Two Units". Attached are the individual pages separated to meet file size restrictions.

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 Post subject: Re: Trying to save the 503
PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2018 12:14 pm 

Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2005 2:27 am
Posts: 566
Location: Winters, TX
Geez Louise, a 129 page document? In the time it took to put that together they could've built the dang track and moved the locomotive. Sounds like a one time move to a new display site, not a move it out of the way and then move it back to its original location. Once completed, I doubt if they'll do anything more with the 503 other than announcing plans to restore it in the foreseeable or not so foreseeable future.


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