Posts Tagged ‘restoring steam locomotives’

L&N 2132 Arrives at Corbin Museum Site

January 20, 2016

Louisville & & Nashville No. 2132 is back in Corbin, Kentucky, after traveling by truck from Georgia.

Movement of the 0-8-0 was spearheaded by the Corbin Tourism and Convention Commission, which is working to establish a railroad museum in the the former L&N passenger station in Corbin

The museum is focusing on displaying equipment relevant to eastern Kentucky and the L&N.

The steam locomotive arrived in Corbin on Monday and will join an L&N steel bay-window at the museum.

No. 2132 is one of just three surviving L&N steam locomotives. The fleet once numbered about 1,100 engines. Two other surviving L&N steam locomotives are owned by the Kentucky Railway Museum in New Haven

Built by the L&N in its South Louisville shops, No. 2132 was one of 400 steam engines built there and the only one not be scrapped.

After being sold to a Florida power plant in 1951, No. 2132 later ended up on static display in Bainbridge, Georgia.

The city of Bainbridge agreed to sell No. 2132 to Corbin interests for a nominal fee.

The Corbin museum plans to undertake a cosmetic restoration of No. 2132, which is mostly intact.  To be added to the locomotive are a whistle, bell, headlight, reproduction number and builder’s plates

The 2132 also will receive a boiler jacket, new jackets on its cylinders, and patching and replacement of rusted metal.

The goal of the restoration is to return the 2132 to the appearance that it had when it left the South Louisville shops.

Hocking Valley Close to Operating Steamer No. 3

June 18, 2015

The Hocking Valley Scenic Railway in southern Ohio is working to have an 0-6-0 steam locomotive in operation by the end of summer.

The 12-year-restoration effort of former Ohio Power Company No. 3 reached a milestone on May 9 when the locomotive was steamed up and tested.

Last Saturday visitors to the railroad located near Nelsonville saw No. 3 moving around the yard under steam.

No. 3 was built by Baldwin in 1920 for Beech Bottom Power Company as No. 13. It was used in Power, West Virginia, to transfer coal from mines to a power plant in northwestern West Virginia.

No. 3 was sold to Ohio Power Company and had been dormant for several decades before arriving on the Hocking Valley in 1982.

Restoration work began about 2001 with volunteers from Ohio, West Virginia and elsewhere coming together the first Saturday of each month to work on the engine.

Once the No. 3 enter service, it will become the only regularly operating standard gauge steam locomotive in Ohio.

For more information on the project, visit the Hocking Valley Scenic Railway Steam Locomotive No. 3 Restoration Facebook page at or go to

N&W 611 Takes Unplanned Baby Steps

May 12, 2015

Norfolk & Western 611 made its first trip in steam on Saturday, a movement that officials said was unplanned.

The class J 4-8-4 moved under its own power onto the Spencer Shops turntable during a National Train Day celebration at the North Carolina Transportation Museum.

Trains magazine reported that as the 611 moved on its own for the first time in 21 years that the steamer was blowing smoke and the crew was blowing the whistle.

The magazine reported that the 611 crew had added a ton of sand to the dome, tested the engine’s appliances and expression satisfaction with the locomotive’s performance.

The running gear has yet to be painted and the sheet metal cover over its air pumps has not been installed.

Chief Mechanical Officer Scott Lindsay said he drew up a list of minor fixes that need to be made but otherwise there were no major problems with the 611’s performance.

Ahead for the restoration effort lies more testing, a Federal Railroad Administration inspection and a boiler wash.

The 611 is slated to move under its own power later this month in a return to its home at the Virginia Museum of Transportation in Roanoke.

Date Set to Move BC&G No. 4 to West Virginia

April 29, 2015

May 19 has been set as the date that Buffalo Creek & Gauley No. 4 will move to the Cass Scenic Railroad from the North Carolina Transportation Museum.

The 2-8-0 will be delivered the Cass Scenic Railroad, now operated by the Durbin & Greenbrier Valley Railroad, on May 20. Nos 4’s tender arrived in Cass on April 8.

After restoration, No. 4 will appear as it did in operation on the BC&G in the 1960s. No. 4 has been recognized as having been one of the last steam locomotives in regular service in the nation.

Because it was a saturated steam locomotive, it often showed signs of leakage on its front, which earned it the moniker “Old Slobberface.”

The Cass Shops hopes to have the locomotive in operating condition for its 90th birthday in 2016. The Cass Scenic Railroad is owned by the state of West Virginia.

Built by Baldwin in 1926, No. 4 was restored in 1986 by the North Carolina museum, which lettered and numbered it as a replica of Southern Railway 2-8-0 No. 604.

As No. 604, it pulled pulled three-mile excursions before its making its last trips in November 2001.

N&W 611 Gets Parts Back on; Fire Up 611! Committee Assigns Claytor Additional Duties

April 28, 2015

Workers have placed the lagging, jacketing, skyline casing and bullet nose of the Norfolk & Western No. 611 back onto the locomotive boiler

The J Class 4-8-4 is now ready to be painted. Other tasks that remain to be completed to restore the locomotive to operating condition include the application of main rods, piston valves and pistons, final servicing of the air brake and electrical systems, and installation of the air compressors.

The work is being done at the North Carolina Transportation Museum in Spencer, N.C.

The Fire Up 611! Committee also announced the appointment of Preston Claytor as excursion director.

Claytor, the son of the late Robert B. Clayor, has already been serving as project manager for the 611 restoration. The senior Claytor served as the first chairman and CEO of Norfolk Southern and pushed for restoration of the 611 in the early 1980s.

The junior Claytor has been negotiating equipment leases, communicating with Norfolk Southern about upcoming operations, and coordinating arrangements with the cities that are origin and destination stations for upcoming excursions to be pulled by the 611.

Gary Gray has been named Fire Up 611! excursion manager and will oversee car hosts, concession staff and telephone support representatives. He also coordinate arrangements for parking and destination entertainment.

Dennison Museum Seeking Funds for Cosmetic Restoration of C&O Steam Locomotive No. 2700

April 21, 2015

A fundraising drive has been established with the goal of raising $20,000 to pay for a cosmetic restoration of Chesapeake & Ohio 2-8-4 Kanawha Class No. 2700 at the Dennison Railroad Depot Museum.

The restoration project is part of a Transportation Enhancement Local Project sponsored by the Ohio Department of Transportation.

ODOT is administering 80 percent of the funding provided by the federal government. The museum must match the remaining 20 percent of the project.

After the funds have been secured, the restoration work will go out for bid. Museum officials hope to have the work completed by 2016.

Built in 1943, the 2700 is in poor condition and has been stripped of most of its components.

“It is important to have a steam engine of this size on site in order for visitors – especially children, to understand the industrial power the railroad symbolized that not only built our nation, but helped win the war,” said museum Director Wendy Zucal. “This particular engine, built in the early 1940s, was a typical engine used during World War II. It was the first in a series of Kanawha-Class engines built for the C&O and is one of the few left today.”

For more information on the “Save Steam Engine No. 2700” campaign, go to

2-Phase Restoration Plan Set for L&N No. 152

April 21, 2015

The Kentucky Railway Museum said it is undertaking a two-phase restoration plan to return Louisville & Nashville steam locomotive No. 152 to service.

The society is seeking donations of $60,000 and volunteer workers for the project. It hopes to have this work completed by the end of summer 2015.

Built in 1905, the 4-6-2 has sat idle in New Haven, Ky., since fall 2011 after museum officials observed leaking boiler tubes at the bottom of the rear tube sheet.

The first phase of the restoration plan involves disassembly and ultrasonic testing of the boiler as well as evaluation of the locomotive’s running gear.

The second phase will be driven by the results of the boiler survey and running gear evaluation.

“Our hope and goal is to complete the engine by mid 2017, but the actual date will be determined by the results of our fundraising efforts,” said No. 152 Restoration Committee Chairman Rob Minton.

The museum has nearly $17,000 in the bank and an additional $25,000 in pledges from the museum’s board of directors, membership and others interested in the project.

L&N donated the 152 to the museum in 1954. It is the official steam locomotives of the Commonwealth of Kentucky and is also listed on the National Registry of Historic Places.

For further information, go to Crew-152 on Facebook, or go to make a contribution.

N.C. Museum Sets 2 N&W 611 Public Events

April 19, 2015

Two public events have been set that will give photographers a look at Norfolk & Western J Class No. 611 at the North Carolina Transportation Museum in Spencer, N.C., where the locomotive is in the final stages of being restored to operating condition.

The museum on May 23 will host a “611 Send-Off Celebration” complete with a cake and the opportunity to look inside the locomotive cab

The 611 will also be moved on and off the roundhouse turntable with 10 lucky winners being able to purchase 30 minutes of throttle time at a cost of $611 per slot on a first-come, first-served basis.

The throttle times will be sold online at 9 a.m. on April 21. To order, go to

Trains magazine editor Jim Wrinn is coordinating a photo charter featuring the 611 that will be run on May 28. Wrinn is a a 29-year NCTM volunteer and a member of the Fire Up 611! Committee.

The 611 will be posed on the turntable and with other steam and diesel locomotives from the museum’s collection.

It will pull a Tuscan red passenger train with the museum’s heavyweight N&W combine as well as a freight cars, thus replicating the late 1950s local freight service that Class J locomotives saw before their retirement.

The museum’s N&W Tuscan red-painted GP9, No. 620, also will be part of the event.

A night photo session and barbecue luncheon featuring Fire Up 611! Chairman Preston Claytor are also planned.

Tickets are limited and will go on sale at 9 a.m. on April 20. They will cost $250 per person. To order, go to

Tickets may also be ordered by calling 704-636-2889, extension 224.


11 Excursions Behind N&W 611 Set for June, July

April 19, 2015

The first public excursions in more than two decades featuring Norfolk & Western J Class No. 611 will run in Virginia during June and July.

The Virginia Museum of Transportation, which owns the 611, said there will be 11 excursions with trains departing the Virginia cities of Manassas, Lynchburg and Roanoke.

The first trips will be 102-mile excursions on June 6 and 7 between Manassas and Riverton Junction over former Southern Railway tracks.

A morning trip will run on June 6 while morning and afternoon trips will operate on June 7. The excursions, which have been named The American, will be part of the annual Manassas Heritage Railway Festival.

The weekend of June 13 and 14 will feature 260-mile round trip excursions between Lynchburg and Petersburg. Operating as The Cavalier, the trips will feature a two-hour layover in Petersburg.

For Independence Day weekend, the 611 will pull 98-mile roundtrips on July 3, 4, and 5 between Roanoke and Lynchburg in the morning and then an 84-mile roundtrip between Roanoke and Radford (Walton Junction.

Operating as The Pelican, there will be no layover and passengers will not be permitted to leave the train during the trips to Lynchburg.

The afternoon trips, which operate as The Powhatan Arrow, will put the 611 and its train over the fabled Christiansburg grade. There will be no layover and passengers will not be permitted to leave the train.

Tickets for the excursions will go on sale on May 6. Additional information will be posted at

611 Ferry Move back to Roanoke Set for May 30

April 19, 2015

The long-awaited return of Norfolk & Western Class J No. 611 after its restoration will occur on May 30 when the 4-8-4 will travel under steam from North Carolina to its home in Roanoke, Va.

The 220-mile trip will begin on the former Southern Railway main line with No. 611 entering its former home rails at Lynchburg, Va.

From there the 611 will traverse a route that it once traveled in scheduled passenger service in the 1950s.

No public tickets are being sold for the ferry move to Roanoke, which the 611 is expected to make without any diesel helpers.

However, a welcome home reception for the 611 in Roanoke at the former N&W passenger station will be open to the public. The 611 is expected to arrive in Roanoke between 2 and 6 p.m.

Among the VIPs who will be aboard the excursion train to Roanoke will be NS CEO Wick Moorman and President Jim Squires.

The 611 is owned by the Virginia Museum of Transportation and officials say that the May 30 date is significant because it is 65 years and one day after the engine entered revenue service and one year after its appearance at the Streamliners at Spencer festival that in part served as a kickoff for the locomotive’s restoration at the North Carolina Transportation Museum.

In the meantime, workers have completed insulating the 611’s boiler. Jacketing and painting the locomotive are the next tasks to complete. A testing firing will then be conducted before the locomotive makes its test runs.

The 611 was one of 14 Class J passenger locomotives built at Roanoke in 1950 and ran in revenue service through 1959.

It was displayed in Roanoke’s Wasena Park until being restored to operating condition in 1981. It pulled numerous excursions through late 1994 when it was placed on display at the Virginia transportation museum in Roanoke.

The museum in 2013 began a study that concluded that the 611 could be restored for $3.5 million with another $1.5 million needed for an endowment.

The museum has thus far raised more than $3 million from across the United States and 19 countries.

Fund raising continues for an on-campus shop and education facility that the museum hopes to begin constructing this summer.