Monday, June 29, 2009

Railroad Dogs

The dogs decided to help me move the #4686 to Wood Spur

"Okay Casey! I aligned the switch. Let's go!"

"Okay. Uncouple us and climb aboard!"

"Yep. We're on our way."

"Hold on. Got to go line the switch back to the mainline."

#4686 on the bridge.

"Hey! Wait for me!"

"Ha ha! I stopped at Wood Spur Switch and Casey had to chase me."

#4686 at Wood Spur Switch

#4686 at Wood Station

That's one big car!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Flatcar #4686 arrives on the RGS

D&RGW #4686 has arrived in Telluride after its 500+ mile journey from Tennessee. Here it is with RGS #10 and the two gons.

Since it is narrow gauge car, it is almost double the capacity of the standard gauge cars.

The decking and side boards (which slide out of the stake pockets) are stained and varnished oak which should last a very long time. This car also weighs around 250 pounds
(I guessed 150 but as Pat pointed out, the sides themselves weigh around 50 pounds... So 250 sounds right to me!)

Its first duty was supposed to be assigned to hauling wood but I finally got my wife's cold and was out of service on Sunday. Perhaps next weekend.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Rip rap the bridge

One chore I did this past weekend was put the old hardened bags of concrete down near the footing of bent #2 to protect it from any erosion due to the large floods we have been getting lately. Twice in June we got storms that dumped 2" of rain in short amounts of time.

The pipe outlet under the bridge needed a little rip rap around it as well to protect the footings of the shed as well as to try to steer more of the water out from under the bridge.

Telluride yard was fairly busy. The power turbine for Pine Hill is sitting there waiting for the tower to be completed. RGS #300 and 302 are on ballast duty. The #10 locomotive is still sitting in front of the barn waiting for its motor to be repaired so it can go back to work. This crossing deck is a nice place to work on stuff out in front of the barn.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

New rolling stock

I am purchasing the #4686 idler flat from Pat this coming weekend. This car is a larger narrow gauge car, 8' long and 22" wide (overall.) It's a nice heavy duty car which will be put into service as a wood hauling car. I will install plywood decking and interior side boards to protect the nicer finish of the car. A larger tarp cover will also be purchased to help.

Eventually all these cars will be stored in the carbarn under cover.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Title Picture and other details

Perhaps I should mention a little about the picture under this blog's title. The Rio Grande Southern needs a switch back in the middle of the upper track due to the elevation change. The grade along this creek rises VERY fast. So a 100' long switchback is being put in. That allows for nearly 6' vertical feet of elevation change in the same distance. Since this railroad hauls wood and not passengers, reversing and backing up the hill is not a problem for me.

Also, the railroad has three 1970-era Railroad Supply Company gondola cars (#300, #301 and #302.) The #302 was in the best shape and is outfitted as the engineer's riding car behind the #10 locomotive. The #10 is also a 1970s-era Railroad Supply Company 4 wheel switcher. It has a 4 horse-power engine which is actually a little too much power for the little transmission will get hot after a while. It was built with a 3-hp engine but over the years of service south of Durango, Colorado, it was rebuilt.

(Here the #302 was being used to haul wall stones for building the retaining walls down near Oak falls.)

On the workbench and around the barn are the parts for the big engine, the Rio Grande Southern #20, a 4-6-0 tenwheeler which is about 1/5 full size. It will weigh around 1000 pounds when completed. Currently, it's waiting to get the tender riveted. Once the tender is completed, the locomotive will be put together next. By this time, I hope to have the engine house which will be below the upper track (existing trackage) of the mainline and above this switchback. The upper two stalls will be heated and for locomotives. The lower 3 stalls will be for rail cars.

I am going to talk to another railroad friend about buying a flatcar from him which is a narrow gauge car and will be used with those gondolas to build the railroad.

Once the railroad is built, those gondolas will be retired and put into maintenance of way service, used less, because of their age, construction and that their trucks are worn out.

Weekend Plans

Well, my plans are ALWAYS changing. But right now, my friend Fred and I will be heading up to Farmington early in the morning on Saturday to move more steel rail for loading until it gets too hot. Then I'll probably work on the bracing for the Vertical Windmill which will keep the battery which will power the Pine Hill Switchback electric switches.
This picture is the frame for that turbine. The wind turbine wheel (painted green - it's green energy afterall) is pictured in the photo from June 17th. The alternator is under the white weather cap and will be driven by belt from a large pulley wheel connected to the turbine. The battery will be mounted inside this frame under the wheel.
On Sunday after church I plan on working on ballasting the tracks down at Pine Hill Siding. The mainline up to the tail of the switchback needs very little ballast so it should be easy to do but the siding needs some adjustment and the tail end needs a lot more ballast, mainly because both are pretty new track. Once completed, then the swithback track will be started. I will also put in a little of the engine house track too, mainly because it is handy to have to switch cars around. And to store the #10 locomotive when it is running again.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Telluride Crossing

The crossing at Telluride has been completed. Part of the crossing is on the Dogwood bridge, the rest is ground level. This allows access to the barn.
Notice the gate to keep people off the bridge.
Eventually the Telluride Water Tank will be between the front porch of the storage building and this crossing. I need water for RGS #20, the heavy puller being constructed. It'll be a real steam locomotive, burning coal.

Starting this blog

Not much to report. A lot of the railroad has already been built and a lot more still needs to be built. But let me summarize what has been built to date:

Wood Spur (to the outdoor water wood stove.)
Dogwood Bridge (56' long, 4' high with a track turnout in the middle)
Tracks 1 and 2 at Telluride
Mainline from Dogwood Bridge to Pine Hill
Pine Hill Siding
Turnout switch for Engine House track.
Upper switch back tail track
Graded switchback.

Currently I am ballasting the mainline and the tracks through the end of the switchback tail track to set the grade and superelevation. Tracks are not that bad overall, just some settling over the past year.

Then I will put in the switchback middle track which has the carbarn (leanto) track turnout switch in the middle.