Southern Pacific #18 update – November and December 2017

Another beautiful day in Independence.

The finished roof.

Our new tool area!

The engine house switch begins to take shape.

The re-plumbing of the feed valve, adding an M3 style.

Plymouth #11 inside.

Just before Thanksgiving the work of moving into our newly completed engine house was underway. The roof and all details of the building were completed in October and it was finally time to get all of our tools in order. Drywall was added to the back wall and shelves and a work bench as well as a welding table were all moved in and tools hung, we are no longer working out of 5 gallon buckets!
In addition to the organization process, on the #18 we installed an M3 feed valve bracket in the air system to improve the reparability and make it easier to deal with. Also on the #18 the FRA mandated “annual” process was begun with water glass cleaning, gauge testing, and a boiler wash.

Saturday night we held a small building dedication complete with dinner and a show, well the premier of Steven Mathers “Steam Returns to Laws” DVD as well as Ed Flemings “Silver spike” DVD.

Lastly, outside, we begun to gather up switch components for our engine house switch, had an electrician and crew on hand to install the power to the building, and moved our little switch engine, ex Apache Powder #11, a 1943 Plymouth inside. And by Thanksgiving day #11 was up and running!

As always thanks to everyone who participates, be sure to pick up some Christmas gifts on our catalog page and remember us for those year end donations. Also check back for 2018 operating days, we are trying to get some finalized before the end of the year.

Southern Pacific #18 at Laws museum

#18 arriving at Laws

#18 under stormy skies

A great weekend was had by all during our first Slim Princess reunion. All went exceptionally well and the #18 ran great. While the internet is full of pictures and videos we have added a few other that show some different angles of the event.

All told the physical work of the event took one full week from loading to final unloading and we gave about 500 paying rides over about 25 trips.

With the #18 back in Independence our attention will shift to finishing our museum exhibit.

Beginning the job of switching the yard

630 AM Saturday and the #18 just had her fire lit while the sun begins to rise

Before the crowds arrive, boxcar #17 is looking like its unloading freight at the depot.

Jeff Taylor and the #18 look as if they are on their way to Owenyo. J. Kluesmire photo

#18 at work. J. Kluesmire photo

Fire in the hole. J. Kluesmire photo

#401 getting loaded up for another run. J. Kluesmire photo

Bringing two different generations together.

At the end of the day Sunday #18 is setting out the boxcar.

One final picture by the turntable.

After some arguing #9 finally moved after 50 years. Before setting the display train back together #9 and boxcar look as if they are just taking a break from switching duties.

Just like the 1950’s Travis Wheeler brings the #18 back to hook up to a cut of cars

Face to face

The crew celebrating a great event.

Monday morning the #18 and tender are ready to head home.

Tender loaded and ready

Tuesday morning the #18 is ready to get on the trailer.

Lunch in Big Pine on the trip home.


Back at home in Independence the #18 awaits its next assignment.