talk about a restoration , big boy

Discussion in 'The BS Topic' started by THOMAS81Z, Jan 5, 2013.

  1. THOMAS81Z

    THOMAS81Z Veteran Member

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    i know alot of you are not railfans but this is huge in the railfan community
    the union pacific wants to restore & run a 4000 big boy this thing is the holy grail of steam .
    its 135' long & is close to 7000 hp this thing is a monster,
    i even found a 3+ page thread it on a-15.com l

    POMONA, Calif. – Union Pacific may be bringing back the ultimate steam machine, an Alco-built 4-8-8-4 Big Boy, the last of which steamed more than 50 years ago.
    Company spokesman Mark Davis told Trains News Wire Friday that the company has been approached by and is working with a third party interested in restoring and operating a Big Boy. He said the railroad is evaluating the condition of preserved UP Big Boy locomotives and that it believes two might be available for restoration. Davis declined to name the other party or give a timeline for the project. But at least one organization is already talking about its potential to put a Big Boy back on the main line.
    The treasurer of the Southern California railroad club that owns a displayed Union Pacific Big Boy 4-8-8-4 says his group hopes to learn more Saturday about a UP offer to acquire No. 4014 for restoration and operation.
    In an exclusive interview with Trains News Wire, John Mastrobuoni from Prescott, Ariz., said the Southern California Chapter of the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society is eager to find out if the railroad can meet its requirement that a replacement piece take the place of the Big Boy at the Los Angeles County Fairgrounds in Pomona. The engine is one of eight survivors of the 25 locomotives that Alco built beginning in 1941 for freight service between Cheyenne, Wyo., and Ogden, Utah until the last steamed in 1959.
    Mastrobuoni said he participated by phone in a meeting Tuesday in which Ed Dickens, who manages UP’s fleet of historic operating steam and diesel equipment, appeared at a chapter meeting in California to pitch the idea. He said Dickens on Saturday is expected to provide more details about what UP would offer and called discussions “preliminary.”
    The idea is already controversial, as some board and chapter members consider the Big Boy as the centerpiece of the club’s exhibit. The 4014 was donated to the chapter in 1962. The exhibit also includes a UP DD40X Centennial diesel No. 6915, UP 4-12-2 No. 9000, Southern Pacific 4-10-2 No. 5021, and Santa Fe 4-6-4 No. 3450.
    “If we can come to an agreement with the railroad, an operating Big Boy is better than one on display,” Mastrobuoni said. “We’d lose the engine for display, but we’d be known everywhere as the group that helped make one run again.”
    He added that rebuilding the No. 4014 would take several years with the aim of operating for the 150th celebration of the completion of the first transcontinental railroad in 2019. The coal-burning engine would be converted to oil firing.
    The railroad has not publicly announced plans to expand its operating steam locomotive fleet, which includes the never retired 4-8-4 No. 844, which made an extensive systemwide tour this year for the company’s 150th anniversary of its founding, and 4-6-6-4 No. 3985, which is undergoing a major overhaul.
    Contrary to Internet reports that UP has vetted the other seven Big Boys, representatives of the National Railroad Museum in Green Bay, Wis., the Forney Museum of Transportation in Denver, and the Steamtown National Park Service site in Scranton, Pa., said Friday that none have been officially contacted. On its face, the engine in southern California, with its dry climate, would be among the best condition.
    In addition to 4014, the following UP Big Boys are still in existence: 4004, in Holliday Park, Cheyenne, Wyo.; 4005, Forney Transportation Museum, Denver, Colo.; 4006, Museum of Transport, St. Louis,Mo.; 4012, Steamtown, Scranton, Pa.; 4017, National Railroad Museum, Green Bay, Wis.; 4018, Museum of the American Railroad, Dallas, Texas; 4023, Kenefick Park, Omaha, Neb.


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  2. 77z28327

    77z28327 Veteran Member

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    I'm familiar with the Big Boy and yes that is a massive piece of engineering.I would love to see one passing by at speed.
     
  3. Dave Nelson

    Dave Nelson Veteran Member

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    I saw the one in Scranton many years ago, amazing piece of history.
     
  4. Batman

    Batman Administrator Staff Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Next on American Restorations........... :)
     
  5. Earlsfat

    Earlsfat Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Lancaster PA has a railroad museum that is really cool. Unfortunately they won't let you on a lot of the pieces. IIRC a ride on a steam powered train (vintage coach car) is only like $20... but it's only a 20 minute or so ride.
     
  6. krabben1

    krabben1 Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Thru the backyards of dirty amish peeps.I took that ride....for the children,lol.
     
  7. Earlsfat

    Earlsfat Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    LOL... yep. Although it was one of the last things we did with my grandfather before he died so... good memories for me - even though it was hotter than he** and stinky. Wouldn't be such a bad deal if they took you on a loop someplace for an hour.
     
  8. SG71SS

    SG71SS Veteran Member

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    I've seen that locomotive at the L.A. County Fair at the rail exhibit area and it's freaking HUGE!
     
  9. Marks71BB

    Marks71BB Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    One of my most memorable moments in recent history (for me) was visiting the Yosemite Sugar Pine Railroad with Sy while participating in the Road Tour Express.
    We didn't ride in it; its was down for maintenance but we did get an exclusive tour of the facility where they do the maintenance on the old iron beast.

    It was neat to see how they even cast their own bearings and replacement parts the old fashioned way.

    It still runs as an attraction in Yosemite and if anyone is ever in the neighborhood I have a hankering to go visit again and maybe even take a ride. (Sy. bring the family, we'll have a pick-nick on the journey ;))

    Its a unique narrow gauge stem locomotive that is gear drive to provide the needed torque to drive it up the steep grades here in the Sierra's. All 12 wheels transmit power to the rail, the numbers are impressive.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. ColdBastrd

    ColdBastrd Veteran Member Gold Member

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    I've been to both the Scranton and Lancaster museums. One funny story I always remember from the Lancaster one has to do with my son. He was 4 at the time (18 now). They had this one old locomotive you could get on and you could see inside the furnace where the coal would burn (they had it lite up with spotlights). There was just the small opening where they would shovel in the coal. So we both look in there...kinda cool. We then started looking at all the controls and I turn to where my son was....he's not there. I look at the opening for the furnace and see his two tiny feet sticking out from the chute. He was crawling into the furnace and if he got in there, well you know how little ones are. If you can't get to them, it makes it all the more of a game for them and they find it quite humorous. I practically dived towards him just as his little sneakers were disappearing into the chute. Grabbed one foot....he started shaking it to get away....grabbed the other....pulled him out as he tried everything in his power to pull himself in there. I could only imagine how long it would have taken me to coax him out of there if I didn't see him slipping in.
     

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