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Project Updates – 2/19/2020

By February 19, 2020February 23rd, 2020Members Only

Submitted by DJ DePanicis & WD Miller

Wabash Caboose

With a long weekend off from school comes a few extra days to work on the car. This weekend brought the quickest and largest amount of new material added to the car in a long while.

Earlier in the weekend, before I arrived, Rich W. came and took the west end beam to make patterns on the new beams for all railings and other hardware. He has both new beams and will form the new ones at his shop.

When I arrived on Sunday, The first thing I did was vacuum the dust and debris from the South side area. Rob showed up and we began installing the new T&G interior siding. the most difficult part was making sure that the first row was straight and level. As we worked upward, the challenge became sliding the new siding under the cupola to butt up against the old. Steve was our leg man as he was cutting the boards and nailing them to the frame under the cupola where we could not access the board from inside. This job was completed mid afternoon because we ran out of material. These boards were the ones used in the “Buy A Board” campaign, so the outside of this wall is very colorful and fun to look at. Next, we moved on to fastening the new floor in. This went very fast and once completed, Rob and I removed all of the old interior siding on the North side of the car. Our cuts were made as to facilitate a clean surface to butt up the new material. After a small conversation around the fire ring, it was time to head to dinner.

The next day began with me me vacuuming the debris from the north side of the car to be ready for more siding. Steve and I went to buy more material including enough siding to complete both sides as well as leftover that can be utilized in the roof. We also bought a few more pieces of flooring to ensure the floor is right up against the frame. While Steve and I were gone, Tom took more piping off of the brake system. His report to me was that he is at a point where parts and pieces can begin to be put back on the car. He is also contacting Strasburg this week about the rebuilding of the valve. Around 11 AM, Tom and I installed the last pieces of flooring on the North side and began installing siding. Again, the most work went into the first row to ensure a straight, level foundation to build on. We got about 5 rows of siding up, only needing to make one special cut to fit the new siding to the old.

It is so rewarding to see this kind of progress! At this point, I am not sure of my next visit, but once I get my calendar figured out, I will let everyone know.

Project Coordinator
Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society, Inc.



Thanks to the hard work and skills of several on the team especially Andrew and Rod, over the past several weekends, #358 for the first time in over 10 years has a complete traction motor circuit. This was made possible by the gracious donation of traction motor cable from the #2349 at the Mad River & Nickel Plate Road Museum. We used 12 splices and about 35 lugs to complete this task. A 12-ton hydraulic crimper borrowed from County Electric, Ottawa, Ohio saved us $980 in a months rent. They’ve been added to the “In-Kind” donation list and will be recognized.

The new traction motor brackets worked great, only a few minor adjustments needed.

Other work completed this weekend included Frank wrapping up the rear corner of the FM side long hood and patching of the sand box. That’s ready to get a bit of filler and sanded down.

Carson and Brody finished welding in the piece that was cut out from the floor near the rear blower. If I didn’t report it last week, we did get the new power cables ran in for the fans and controllers.

Also this past week Rod did some work in the cabinet with a bit more repairs of burnt or cut wires on the low voltage side.

Next we’ll continue with a bit more work in the cabinet, some other mechanical repairs, and make the generator to switch gear cables, a total of 3 cables. And of course work on the fans and such will continue and wrap up soon.

Likely to start thinking about pipe work for both the water and air systems.

I’ll send out an updated work list later this week, it’ll have several more things crossed off. We’re making great progress now!

Thanks again to everyone who has helped on 358 these past several weeks, it’s with your skills and time that 358 will roll again!

All the best!!!

WD Miller
Project Manager, Project 358
Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society, Inc.
Cell:  419-303-2690