Aug 28, 2015

Aluminum Overcast visits Felts Field on tour of Northwest

My second hobby interest is military history and a B-17 is a big part of a conflict called World War 2. It's on display on Saturday from 9 am to 4 pm at Felt's Field in the Spokane Valley.
Without the B-17 doing its thing back in 1942 and onward  it could be argued that Adolph's boys would still be ruling the European continent. The sacrifices the men that flew them is represented in this machine of war.
The nose art says it's the "Aluminum Overcast" but I think I heard it was a remake of the real one that did 31 bombing raids over Europe. Many of them did not survive the anti-aircraft fire and the fighters.
It was so clean it looked like it just came out of the factory on its way to combat but that was 70 years ago when I was just a mere child.  How many of us could do it today to do what they did so many years ago?
By the way, this power set was waiting for clearance to get on the BNSF main at Felt's Field on the UP (ex- Spokane International trackage ) through Spokane.

Youngster checks out the Evergreen Railroad

This little guy was with his mom at the club for 2 hours or so and was just enamored with steam engines. After running the Big Boy around he spotted the UP Challenger and asked us to run that one as well.
Who are we to say no so Tom Kirk did the honors for him with a freight special. ( Smoke would be nice?)
Steve Wesolowski brought in a fleet of MRL power pulling a healthy train of company equipment. Steve was video taping this train so millions of viewers will see it someday on their computer screen.
This F45 was proudly in the lead as it passed the Titanic Ice factory.
Finally I got the NP SD45 for Norm relettered in post merger numbers after redoing the cab with the right windows for NP units. Now all I need is Norms's address so I can get it to him. Does anyone know his address? Norm?

Aug 17, 2015

What is it anyway?

This is the sun at 4:30 pm on Friday August 17th as there was so much smoke in the air from the fires burning hundreds of miles away but we get the wind direction our way.
I included the edge of a building on East Sprague and there were clouds passing through the shot. At times the sun just disappeared from view.
This shot may be out of focus or it shows the separation between the sun and the glow of the nuclear blasts emanating from it.
Our Saturday run session for a family that asked if we could run trains for them got Steve Welton and I running a diesel coal train and my UP Big Boy with the military train.
Something of a rare occasion was this New York Central Heritage unit passing through Spokane last week. I didn't shoot it but it was sent to me by a fellow railfan of note. Nice catch! The Central is long gone but the owner Norfolk Southern has a number of their units painted in predessor colors. Oh yea, BNSF has logos on their grain cars of their group. None on their BNSF cop cars.
Last but not least are these plaques I made for Mike and Bob Applegate that they can hang on their walls in their train rooms. They are NP fans and have been members of the Evergreen train club for almost 7 years. They both live far away and visit the club on occasion but their involvement has been valuable and are part of our success as a train club and I wanted to thank them while I still had the ability to make the plaques for them. Member Bob Gadsby made he art. Thanks guys! They are in the mail to Whitefish!

Aug 16, 2015

Same railroad.... 3 different paint shcemes

While going to work I noticed a blinking yellow light on one of the BNSF signal towers so I made a trek to the Irvin Bridge with 3 seconds to spare and caught these three fellas moving a very long coal train. I checked for any coal dust but could not come up with any.
Beside 3 units on the front this pusher is assisting with a push on the rear so less strain is put on the couplers to hold 100 plus cars together. The engineer in the lead unit runs this one as well.
I made my way down Trent Avenue about one mile and saw another headlight that was following the coal train and this one was quite unusual as it turned out to be the Boeing Air Force!
They are assembled in the midwest and sent to Everett or Seattle for final assembly as long as they stay out of the rivers along the way. One day I catch a passenger train, the next day I catch a airplane train. The best part is that no one caught me!
This guy was waiting for the Boeing train to pass and started backing up into Yardley with this collection of slightly rusted tanks? boilers? atom bombs? on very long drop bottom flat cars for such loads.
On the way home I stopped at the train clug to do a little painting for one of the members on his diesel and found a crew doing new track lighting of rhte back of the club! Scotty was doing great work with supervisors Marvin and Keith keeping an eye on him. It must be a union job?

Tales from the crypt

Just like the real railroads we employed the same trick to recover an errant steam engine that failed on the road. Our green branch is difficult to reach in some places so on the the guys decided to bring in a diesel of the same railroad to save it from the torch.
New member Bob Gadsby goes modern with a brand new Dash 9 pulling a deslectic collection of cars including Jim Beam and Jack Daniels.
Bob's most unique car was this Oscar Meyer load bringing 2 of their famous automobiles decked out with the famous hot dog on the top. Tie downs would be nice?
Marvin went 1950's on us with his 2 GP9s in his favorite railroad passing Bakersville.
John Schwarze must be showing off the first days of the BN with 4 different locos with 3 of the
merger roads represented...GN, Burlington and NP. The interloper is a leased Western Pacific unit.
Greg filled in the holes in the mountain with plaster gauze. Next week we add scenery.
Spike Gorley had his BNSF train pulling a long container train on the Blue Main. Looks like Evergreen territory is having a shortage of rainfall as well.

Leftovers from the leftovers.

New member Janis shows off her variety of equipment with a little 2-6-0 pulling a passenger train that I rode on some 40 years ago from Durango to Silverton on the Denver & Rio Grande Western. The water car is a nice touch as there may be a need down the tracks. Look at all those nice little orange passenger cars....and orange ice reefers!
Maybe we should have called our club the Orange club as that color seems to show up more often than any other?
See, more orange! Its not my imagination, is it?
More orange, again!  Where are the color police?
Even Mike Baker as fallen into to the orange virus syndrome !
Oh, this isn't orange but good old Evergreen Green! It's a caddy for all the Digitract controllers that need a home!
At least they are not orange!

Aug 13, 2015

Let there be Lights!

The 8 foot flouresent tube lights are gone and 18 can lights on tracks are in place at the rear of the club.
Here is a random shot of Mount Whitney without any additional lighting needed so the photos should be better than before with the new system. Thanks to Scotty, Marvin and Keith who did
most of the work and purchased all the equipment.
Greg Mercier filled in the gaps in the mountain with plaster cloth to make ready for the "Oatmeal" filler and the retaining walls

Another example of better lighting is the yard at the port district so my life will be easier to make these e-mails good good.
Tom Kirk get a lesson in airbrush at the spray booth yesterday. The cab is being held by a cardboard tube to keep fingers off wet paint.
Scotty Smith clowns it up with this animated head he built for a church function out of blue foam. He says the eyes can move by some magic feature. You don't argue with a guy twice your size!

Aug 2, 2015

All play and no work makes JIm and Marvin want to fix stuff.

Like any railroad in the world or any where else you need to fix stuff to make it work properly. Jim Bowden and Marvin Sheppard made short work or a major repair in adding a new switch for the log reload and fix a slight droop in one of the mainlines.  This stuff does not fix itself!
Careful measuring and adjustments are important as our little couplers seems to find any weakness in the system. Plenty of padding and plywood keeps the tracks underneath from getting hurt. (and knees too!)
They got everything in place so the guys were able to run on Thursday night including this monster of a train being assembled by Steve Wesolowski with 3 large GEs and 40 well cars with 86 containers. What, you don't believe me?
Steve put the train through its paces and worked perfectly just like the right ones! Count 'em!
Here is the tail shot of the Hyundai container train with the power in the distance background. Who
said you can't run big trains at the Evergreen?
Greg Mercier had this huge NP train running most of the day with 5 freight units on the point.