DAY OUT WITH THOMAS 2009 - VOLUNTEER STAFF NEEDEDRMNE President Ralph Harris has most of the arrangements completed for this year’s visit by Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends, which remains the largest by far RMNE fund raiser. Nancy Pratt again will be using her organizational skills as the DOWT Crew Dispatcher and is now taking requests for positions. The event will be running 31 July, 1-2 then August 7-9, the usual Friday-Saturday-Sunday schedule. Please contact her as soon as possible at her new e-mail address or tel. 203.579.5930 – Thanks!
Communication & Signal DepartmentSteve Butterworth has begun a summer project to repaint signals and signal cabinets in the historic New Haven Railroad appearance of white with black trim. With the help of Chad Boutet and Hal Reiser the Seidel Crossing in Waterville was completed. Chase Commons Rd will be next. Steve suggested a 2 or 3 person crew, equipped with a wire wheel grinder and sander for surface prep, and a portable generator to provide power where it couldn’t be tapped from the signal cabinet. Contact Steve if you can help with this project.
Weekday Work OpportunitiesGene Pfeiffer is spending a lot of weekdays on the railroad, usually at the Thomaston Shop. He could use some help, especially now since his usual assistant is on light duty due to recent surgery.
Train and Station Crews URGENTLY NeededWe’ve begun our 2009 operating season and train and station crews are needed! Please call Barb Walcott at 203.525.5290 or 860.283.5790 so that she doesn’t have to spend all her time tracking down the necessary staff. If you'd like to get involved, but don't know where to start, get in touch with us and we'll get you started.
MOTOR VEHICLE DEPARTMENTBob Harrington reports that the current project is repairing the electric brakes on the tie inserter. The IHC loader remains out of service for now, and hydraulic repairs will be needed on the Dyna-Hoe.
LOCOMOTIVES AND ROLLING STOCKNAUG 1732’s future diesel engine has now had all 16 heads removed from the block by “The Two Daves” and others. Hopes remain high that we won’t find any freeze damage inside the block.
NAUG 2203 is currently our only operating locomotive, covering our regular service runs and any switching moves needed.
NH 529 has received attention from the two Daves plus Matt Andel and perhaps others. The installation of the new auxiliary generator is about complete. Water and fuel leaks are being attended to – the maintenance history of this loco back in the Amtrak ownership era (1980s) showed these were common problems.
NH (CDOT) 2019 continues to receive attention to get it into standby status. Scott Paribello and others have been working on it.
Coach 4989 (“The Cadaver”) has been brought to the TSY for stripping of usable parts.
Coach 4990 (“The Beater”) has recently received a roof re-glopping by Steve Butterworth and Hal Reiser. The car will also be receiving some well-needed window work and other repairs to prepare it for DOWT.
Coach 5046 will be getting its windows replaced over the next several Saturdays – 13 June maybe but 20 and 27 June for sure. Project chair Sam Walker has already begun to manufacture the wood guides that will be installed in the window openings. The replacement will be complete with the serviceable old windows going to other coaches. There will be opportunities for painting and fitting – help will be needed to get this necessary job done. Contact Sam if you can help with this project.
Coach 5805 continues to receive the installation of exterior patching led by Jon Chase and Dan DiTullio. Sam has been working in the welding needs as time permits. Inside the coach, Stan Bogacz and company continue to work on the lower deck ceiling. Tony Pratt has been fitting metal patches (that will later be welded in) to repair rust outs near the window post bases. Work to come – interior fitting out including lighting, baggage racks and seat assemblies, including re-upholstery.
NH W-221 has been spotted on track 10 near the south end of the shop so that needle scaling and an interior cleanout can begin. Chris and Dawn have already been hard at work needle-gunning one of its trucks.
Caboose (Van) CV 4014 has had it’s basic roof installation completed, reports owner Al. Work included stripping off the layers of tarps, old roof walks, and roofing material then wood repairs, surface preparation, then the installation of a rubber membrane type covering that replaces the former covering. Al is pleased with the success of this project and thanks all who assisted him. He feels that the success came from thorough planning. A more detailed account will appear in the Spring 2009 Along the Line.
BRIDGES AND BUILDINGS DEPARTMENTThomaston Station - As Walt Hermann continues his recovery fro heart surgery on light duty, he has traded his chain saw for garden tool sand has been quite busy gardening around the Thomaston Station.
Thomaston Shop - Electrical installation work continues.
MAINTENANCE OF WAYThe Huntington Ave (Waterville) passing track rail replacement project continues. On June 6 Pete LaBouliere, Howard Pincus, Timothy Reed, and Matt Lawson worked the project with 25-ton crane PTM 198, moving in new rail and removing the old. Only about 8 rail lengths remain to reach the south switch, which will complete the project.
SPECIAL EVENTSCeleste is looking for some assistance passing out brochures at the Quassy Amusement Park in Middlebury, Connecticut. This is part of the “One Tank Travel Expo” on 14 June – many local attractions will be there. Contact Celeste if you can help out this day.
A special train was run up to Torrington on May 30 to carry actors portraying President Abraham Lincoln and his entourage into town. Of course, RMNE brochures were handed out to some of the 500 or so that met the train.
– Bill Sample, Editor.