Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

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Dick_Morris
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Dick_Morris » Fri Dec 07, 2018 5:10 am

The November status report is posted at http://557.alaskarails.org/restore/index.html.

Although 557 escaped any significant affects from the earthquake a week ago, we were very fortunate. At least four schools within about a 25 mile radius of the epicenter suffered structural damage and will be closed for the remainder of the school year or beyond and a number of houses encountered major damage. Throughout the affected areas, many stores, libraries, and residence had everything on their shelves dumped onto the floor. The Alaska Railroad was able to restore service to the entire road within about four days. We are still getting aftershocks, including a couple that I felt this morning and many others that I can only hear.

This outer view of the boiler represents many thousands of hours of volunteer time work and hundreds of thousands of dollars of expenditures to install the new firebox and stays. We are on the home stretch to getting this part completed.
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Dick_Morris
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Dick_Morris » Fri Dec 21, 2018 3:35 am

Starting on November 26 through about the end of the year I am posting to our Facebook page a reprise of photos of the Alaska Railroad #557 restoration over the last six years. https://www.facebook.com/557-Restoratio ... 931790950/

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Dick_Morris
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Dick_Morris » Mon Dec 24, 2018 11:14 pm

The link to the December status report is at http://557.alaskarails.org/restore/index.html. It includes some additional information and photos from our earthquake.
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Dick_Morris
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Dick_Morris » Thu Jul 04, 2019 2:36 am

The latest monthly status report (along with the others since my post in December) can be reached at http://www.557.alaskarails.org/restore/index.html.
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557-into-daylight reduced.jpg
On a hot (for Wasilla, Alaska) 84 degree June 29, 2019, 557 poked her nose out the door for the first time in quite a while so the boiler shell could be sand blasted and painted.

Glenn Brooks
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Glenn Brooks » Thu Jul 04, 2019 2:16 pm

Dick, your crew’s volunteer work on 557 is truly inspirational. 557 restoration must be one of the most in depth, quickest return to service restoration projects in modern times! Hope you don’t mind that I copied below a short video link buried deep in one of the 557 monthly progress reports.


https://youtu.be/G2TN6y4Xxds
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Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

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Dick_Morris
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Dick_Morris » Thu Jul 04, 2019 5:26 pm

Glenn, thanks for the complements. I'll pass them to the rest of the crew. It hasn't been as quick as we would have liked or predicted, though. We describe it as the seventh year of a two-year project, with only two years to go.

We have the good fortune of doing this at the the right time, in the right place, attracting the right people, and having an excellent group of business, non-profit, and individual supporters.

Special credit goes to Patrick Durand, our full-time volunteer President and Project Manager who has been involved since the project was only a vision. He was a long-time live steamer before he directed his time toward 557. Some may remember him from about 25 years ago when he packed up his motor home, put his Alaska Railroad F-7 in its basement, and spent a year visiting steam tracks across the country. This photo, borrowed from the Houston Area Live Steamers site, was taken during that trip.
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Dick_Morris
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Dick_Morris » Thu Jul 04, 2019 5:33 pm

Oh, and thanks for mentioning the video. We are quite happy with the way it turned out. We found the photos and wrote the script, a videographer donated the production, a local band allowed us to use the background music, and my daughter is the narrator. Total cost - zero.

Glenn Brooks
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Glenn Brooks » Thu Jul 04, 2019 6:50 pm

Wonderful! Your daughter’s narration is brilliant! Give Pat my regards. I doubt he remembers me, but I certainly remember Pat introducing me to live steaming back in the mid ‘90’s . I became a club member for a few years before we moved to Hawaii. Latter he advised me on a 4-4-2 Atlantic I bought in Alabama and shipped to Honolulu. Initially he gave me a personal tour through his shop and set up a one on one visitor day at the club track. I was enthralled with the old ALS track up at the Wasilla airport, next to the Museum. Always thought the 7 1/2” gauge club track through the ancient, stunted, northern forest suited the scale perfectly. Perfect wilderness Railroad in miniature.

Glenn
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Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

Pontiacguy1
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Pontiacguy1 » Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:39 am

Atlantic bought in Alabama.... that didn't come from the Birmingham area did it? Iron City Southern?
met Mr. Durand down in Texas at Roy Pickard's Commanche and Indian Gap railroad. beautiful locomotive. also, the 2-8-0 is going to be great. I'm sure the boiler is like new.

Glenn Brooks
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Re: Steam railroading to return to Alaska!

Post by Glenn Brooks » Fri Jul 05, 2019 1:41 pm

Pontiacguy, could have been out of the Birmingham area, although I can’t really remember where, other than out in the Deep Rural South. Good ole boy who owned it was from a forth generation civil war plantation family and lived off a trust on what was left of a once expansive confederate land holding. The Atlantic was parked in a large barn a long ways from any town., behind a large, run down plantation home. It was a one off build from the early ‘50’s - originally built in Omaha by a Pharmacist, before any live steam standardization made its way. His Pharmacy was across the street from a big rail depot. So he would walk over, take measurements, then make parts in the back of his shop.

Actually was a 4-4-4 wheel configuration. Canadian railways had a few of these built - duplicate of an Atlantic, but with a 4 wheel trailing truck. was a 7 5/8” gauge build, with a 12” boiler. Almost as big as my 12” Ottaway. I doubt the PO ever actually ran it - bought it on a whim and then lost interest, I guess. It’s down in the LA area somewhere, now.

Glenn
Moderator - Grand Scale Forum

Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

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