Posts Tagged ‘Reading 2102’

Steam Saturday: 50 Year Old Memories

May 8, 2021

Fifty years ago last month, (April 24, 1971) ex-Reading 4-8-4 T-1 No. 2102 pulled an excursion on Norfolk & Western (Ex-Akron, Canton & Youngstown) tracks from Akron to Spencer.

In the top image, the train is boarding in Akron west of downtown. In the next two images it it shown westbound en route to Spencer.

One hundred Akron residents had raised $40,000 to purchase the Northern type steamer from the Reading Company. It was overhauled at the South Akron roundhouse of the Pennsylvania Railroad.

After restoration, the owners had a difficult time getting a railroad to agree to host an excursion before N&W agreed to allow it to run trips on April 24 and 25 over the former AC&Y.

Nearly 2,000 rode the 16-car train.

Photographs by Robert Farkas

Steam Saturday: Remembering William Benson

January 30, 2021

Here is a photograph that makes me thankful for having taken around a half century ago.

In memory of Bill Benson, here is ex-Reading T-1 No. 2102 in Akron heading to Hudson to be turned on the wye there and return to Akron.

It is the break-in trip in the summer of 1968. The late Mike Ondecker and I were on a grassy hill just south of Akron Union Depot when this was taken.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

R&N Test Fires Reading T-1 2102

January 14, 2021

Former Reading Company 4-8-4 No. 2102 underwent steam testing this week in Port Clinton, Pennsylvania.

Owned by regional carrier Reading & Northern, CEO Andy Muller, Jr. blew the whistle of the T-1 at 11 a.m. on Tuesday.

“The engine is like new,” Muller said following the testing, adding that the boiler, injectors, feed water heater and stoker tested fine.

Workers did find a leaks and will repair those after the locomotive cools down.

Shop forces had lighted a fire inside the firebox of the locomotive on Saturday. By Tuesday the engine has reached 240 psi working pressure

Restoration work on the locomotive, which was built by the Reading in 1945 will continue.

The 2102’s cab is still not attached and the tender needs to be rebuilt.

However, Mueller hopes to have the locomotive operating by spring when he wants to have it pull a freight train.

The restoration work has cost $1 million to date and Muller said completion of the work will cost another $100,000.

Muller bought the 2102 in 1987 and it pulled excursion trains on the 13-mile Blue Mountain & Reading from 1987 to 1992. 

Its first assignment in revenue service is expected to be pulling the North Reading Fast Freight, between North Reading and Pittston, Pennsylvania.

Amtraking East in Search of a Reading T-1

June 30, 2020

The excursion train crosses the Reading’s concrete viaduct across the Susquehanna River in Harrisburg, on May 21, 1988.

My spring vacation in 1988 began with a drive to Canton in the wee hours of the morning to catch Amtrak’s eastbound Broadway Limited to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

My sister and brother in law were living in Gettysburg and they picked me up in early afternoon.

My focus was an excursion trip sponsored by the Blue Mountain & Reading from Temple to Gettysburg with Reading 4-8-4 No. 2102 running all the way on ex-Reading rails, recreating one of the early 1960s Reading Rambles.

At Belt Line Junction, No. 2102 took the Conrail mainline to Harrisburg then to Mt Holly Springs, where it switched to the Gettysburg Railroad, which was the ex-Reading branch, the rest of the trip to Gettysburg.

Article and Photographs by Edward Ribinskas

At Belt Line Junction in Reading.

A wider angle view of the Reading T-1 crossing the river in downtown Harrisburg.

Now on the Gettysburg Railroad at Hunters Run.

No. 2102 stalled shortly after I made this shot at Goodyear. Gettysburg motive power had to be brought down to assist the 2102 and train to Gettysburg.

Since I was on a “T-1 high ,” I drove to Baltimore the next day to the B&O Museum. Reading 2101 is shown as it appeared when it was the power in the East of the American Freedom Train.

Steam Sunday: Reading 2102 in Akron

June 21, 2020

Here are two images of ex-Reading 4-8-4 No. 2102 on display in the Norfolk & Western  (ex-Akron, Canton & Youngstown) yard in Akron on April 23, 1971, or April 24, 1971.

She would run an Akron-Spencer excursion on both April 25 and April 26 of that year.

Photographs by Robert Farkas

Steam on the AC&Y

June 6, 2020

The wayback machine has landed us in the steam era. No, not the steam in revenue service era but the steam excursion era.

That is Reading 4-8-4 Northern type No. 2102 coming toward us on the former Akron, Canton & Youngstown.

Of course by the time the train ran on April 25, 1971, these tracks were property of the Norfolk & Western. The image was made in the Akron area.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Bringing Back Great Memories

April 18, 2020

These bring back great memories. Here are a couple from a trip I made with Paul Woodring to the Reading, Blue Mountain & Northern railfan weekend in June 1988.

In the top photograph, these two E-units in Pennsylvania Railroad heritage paint were in South Hamburg, Pennsylvania, on June 26.

In the bottom image is former Reading No. 2102, which was once Akron’s own 4-8-4, in South Hamburg on June 25.

Article and Photographs by Robert Farkas

The Reading 2102 in Akron

April 5, 2020

The Reading never came close to serving Akron, but for a time in the late 1960s and early 1970s a piece of the Reading was based in and operated here.

Reading 4-8-4 No. 2102 was restored to operating condition at the former Pennsylvania Railroad roundhouse in Akron.

The owners of the T-1 type engine had difficulty getting a railroad to agree to host an excursion before the Norfolk & Western agreed to do it.

No. 2102 is shown on display at the former Akron, Canton & Youngstown yard in Akron a couple days before two weekend trips from Akron to Spencer in April 1970 that traversed former AC&Y tracks.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

Reading 2102 May Run in 2017

January 22, 2016

Reading Company 4-8-4 No. 2102 will be restored to operating condition by the Reading Blue Mountain & Northern Railroad.

The RBN&N said the tender has been separated from the Northern-type locomotive as a first step toward restoration.

In a news release, the railroad said that crews have removed the front end and work has begun on the cab.

The cab, jacketing, piping, super heater units, tubes and flues will be removed and the locomotive is expected to be disassembled to allow for ultrasonic testing and inspection.

After that, the Federal Railroad Administration Form 4 (1,472-day) inspection will be conducted.

Andrew Muller, Jr., owner and CEO of the RBN&N said the T-1 may be operational by mid-2017.

The restoration is being done at the railroad’s shops in Port Clinton, Pennsylvania.

The RBN&N said it carried 100,000 passengers on its excursion trains in 2015, which is about 30 percent higher than 2014 ridership.

RBM&N owns more than 300 miles of railroad along with operational steam locomotive No. 425, two rail-diesel cars and more than 35 diesel locomotives. It employs more than 200 people.

When Akron Had its Own Steam Locomotive

June 6, 2015

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Remember when the Akron area had a 4-8-4? Here’s Allegheny 2102 (ex-Reading 2102) heading southbound through Akron on May 7, 1977. Soon it would reach Warwick and turn on the wye. Then it and Cuyahoga Valley Line No. 4070 would leave for Horseshoe Curve and an ill-fated double header around the famed Horseshoe Curve.

Photograph by Robert Farkas