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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2022 6:27 pm 

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 7:52 am
Posts: 2280
Location: Strasburg, PA
Alexander D. Mitchell IV wrote:
It was reported that the Strasburg wanted "7002" to help stem a motive power shortage. "7002" was allegedly in extremely good condition at the time, supposedly with tool marks from its last overhaul still present here and there.
Seems to me that #7002 was Bill Withuhn's brain child, from when he was briefly in charge of the RRMPA, as essentially a cool thing to do, and Huber wasn't about to turn down another engine. SRC had been running without #89 for over three years without great hardship by the time #7002 came along.

Regarding her condition, #7002 had been overhauled at Altoona in 1939, and never fired up. The staybolts were still shiny, the flues still had stenciling on them, the tender tank had never had water in it, the safety valves and injectors had never seen steam.

Considering the above, I now believe that it was a huge mistake to return her to service in that she was the only example of an engine extant that was fresh out of the shops from the pre-diesel era (i.e., before RR's started short sheeting steam engine overhauls, since they had a very short future before the scrap yard).

Now #7002 is just another half used up ex tourist RR engine.


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2022 7:08 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:19 pm
Posts: 2408
Location: Sackets Harbor, NY
As that famous radio personality was known to say " and now you know the rest of the story".

Thank you Mr. Anderson. Ross Rowland


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2022 10:14 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:47 pm
Posts: 1210
Location: Philadelphia, PA
I heard the same story earlier and became an advocate of never restoring RDG T-1 2124 to service. She was last overhauled in the steam era and had gotten all her major shoppings at Reading Shops until retired in 1961.

While not pristine after an overhaul, she represents steam era practice.

It wonders me why they had done all that work on 7002, then never used the engine. My speculation was that they were planning a major event with S1 6-4-4-6 6100 shattering the speed record claimed by LNER A-4 Mallard and PFW&C E2 7002. Then Hitler invaded Poland.

Phil Mulligan


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2022 12:40 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 7:52 am
Posts: 2280
Location: Strasburg, PA
EJ Berry wrote:
It wonders me why they had done all that work on 7002, then never used the engine.
I understand that she was overhauled to operate at the 1939 world's fair, but the shops missed the deadline, and she ended up towed to the fair for static display. After that, there was no reason to finish her. Her brakes were completed only to the point that the dead engine feature worked, and that was that. She had no independent brake valve (or its plumbing) at all until we installed one in 1983.


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2022 1:15 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 20, 2010 10:49 am
Posts: 270
Location: North London UK
Hi Guys; Getting back on topic, congratulations Jim! Looking forward to great things, and perhaps that little Canadian 4-6-0 rebuilt in the near future. Have fun guys - David Notarius, ex BR&W fireman from NJ, now stuck in North London UK


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2022 7:04 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2019 8:47 pm
Posts: 169
To further derail the topic, the DT&I #16 at IRM seems to be in similar "like new" condition to how Kelly described the 7002. I remember looking into an immaculate firebox on the 16, and then down into the dome to read the still visible heat numbers down on the tubes. I can't say for a fact that it is "turn key", having not been a part of an in-depth inspection of it, but it was built in 1915, and by just 1930 it was placed into the Ford collection- I'm told that it was rebuilt and/or restored prior to going on display. The condition it is in supports that idea- I'd say that since the tubes were last put in it has seen single-digit service days, or none at all.

I'd place it in the same category as the BLW 60000 and pre-SRC 7002, and others too valuable as a time capsule artifact of early 20th century workmanship to ruin by using up in service.


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2022 8:30 pm 

Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2021 10:03 pm
Posts: 70
Location: Southeast PA
Kelly Anderson wrote:

Regarding her condition, #7002 had been overhauled at Altoona in 1939, and never fired up. The staybolts were still shiny, the flues still had stenciling on them, the tender tank had never had water in it, the safety valves and injectors had never seen steam.

Considering the above, I now believe that it was a huge mistake to return her to service in that she was the only example of an engine extant that was fresh out of the shops from the pre-diesel era (i.e., before RR's started short sheeting steam engine overhauls, since they had a very short future before the scrap yard).

Now #7002 is just another half used up ex tourist RR engine.


Kelly - please don't take this as me dismissing your sentiment about returning 7002 to service rather than "shop fresh" at RRMPA, but...

What would have been the benefit of leaving her "shop fresh"? The RRMPA does not let visitors inspect the locomotives that closely. No one would see the flues with the stenciling still on them or the shiny staybolts. I doubt the average visitor (or railfan even) knows the difference between a safety valve or injector that has never seen steam and one that has.

Essentially, wouldn't she look the same today whether she was left-as-is or steamed as she was in the 80s?


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2022 9:49 pm 

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 7:52 am
Posts: 2280
Location: Strasburg, PA
PRR8063 wrote:
What would have been the benefit of leaving her "shop fresh"? The RRMPA does not let visitors inspect the locomotives that closely. No one would see the flues with the stenciling still on them or the shiny staybolts.

Essentially, wouldn't she look the same today whether she was left-as-is or steamed as she was in the 80s?
I see your point. My answer is 'I don't know'.


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2022 9:52 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 2:50 pm
Posts: 2764
Location: Northern Illinois
One of the functions of a museum is to preserve things, irrespective of who is going to view them. Granted, 99.9999% of those who view the artifact don't have the knowledge to appreciate the just shopped condition, but there will come a time when one researcher comes along who is studying steam era shop practices, and then the artifact will be priceless.

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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2022 11:02 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:47 pm
Posts: 1210
Location: Philadelphia, PA
7002 would look the same to the casual visitor. However internally she would demonstrate the difference in shop practices between 1939 and the present.

Similarly. 2124, as is, demonstrates 1961 (end of steam era) maintenance proctice. That engine was maintained in the same shop that had built her.

Phil Mulligan


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2022 11:54 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:19 am
Posts: 6279
Location: southeastern USA
Much of what I have learned about the steam shop practices at PRR have been the stories told by the guys that are restoring them and running them in this era - and those stories aren't generally pretty. Looking at dead steel wouldn't illustrate that reality.......

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“God, the beautiful racket of it all: the sighing and hissing, the rattle and clack of the cars over the rails. These were the sounds that made America the greatest country on earth." Jonathan Evison


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2022 11:55 am 

Joined: Tue Apr 20, 2010 10:49 am
Posts: 270
Location: North London UK
OK guys,
Why not,instead of the usual "flogging of the dead iron horses", lets get back on track. Perhaps we should be focusing on Jim’s future on the Strasburg, and possible future projects that the railroad may be undertaking. I am especially interested in future motive power& rolling stock projects, the line expansion of freight business and contract work for other railroads. Have fun guys - David Notarius, ex Black River & Western, hiding out in North London UK.


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Fri Oct 07, 2022 9:14 pm 

Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2004 6:27 am
Posts: 143
Regarding 7002. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. While the evidence of fresh shopping was of archival significance, the fact that the boiler slides were stuck, the firebox leaked like a sieve, and the newly machined pop valves barely functioned, points to an educational moment regarding the quality of work turned out. It took two years to get the firebox tight, only to have a roof sheet patch crack through on the third leg of a weld. In the end she was a great locomotive above 40 mph. On Strasburg, she was a dog.

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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Sun Oct 09, 2022 8:06 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:54 pm
Posts: 2271
Linn W. Moedinger wrote:
Regarding 7002. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. While the evidence of fresh shopping was of archival significance, the fact that the boiler slides were stuck, the firebox leaked like a sieve, and the newly machined pop valves barely functioned, points to an educational moment regarding the quality of work turned out. It took two years to get the firebox tight, only to have a roof sheet patch crack through on the third leg of a weld. In the end she was a great locomotive above 40 mph. On Strasburg, she was a dog.


Doesn't this sort of illustrate a conundrum of modern heritage operations? Recreating (very) early 20th century passenger operations accurately-to the extent such equipment is available-is most accurate with a spritely Atlantic or Pacific with big drivers, but since modern operations are generally done at rather sedate speeds a 7002 really is out of its element at typical 15-20 mph.

There might be less accuracy or glamour in a small drivered switcher or freight hog, but it's mechanically better suited to restricted speed or just above.

The one place I can think of such an engine (albeit sans the 80's) running at 40mph regularly is the R&N, but she hauls heavyweight steel coaches and generally had a diesel or two tucked in behind.

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but words will wound your "inner child".


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 Post subject: Re: Strasburg Rail Road names new general manager
PostPosted: Sun Oct 09, 2022 10:03 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:47 pm
Posts: 1210
Location: Philadelphia, PA
First I can see how PRR stopped work on E7s 7002-II when it was almost completed. It was 1939 and shortly before, PRR had extended electrification from Paoli to Harrisburg and Wilmington to Washington. This saw MU cars replacing steam on local trains, and the displaced engines were probably E7s and E7sa 4-4-2's rebuilt from various E2 and E3 subclasses.

At least 7002 got to stretch her legs for a while on off-line excursions, mostly on Amtrak, doubleheading with 1223.

Phil Mulligan


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