December – and November – have brought us actual physical progress towards the #18’s new home. Beginning in November with the grading and dirt work and continuing on with the foundation and concrete work this month. As of December 15th we officially have a foundation and the new building stacked on site and ready to be put up!!
If all goes as planned we will begin erecting the building after the New Year and hope to have it ready by the end of January. Once the building is up, the track panels will be assembled for inside the building and the #18 will move to its new home sometime there after.
Along with the building work, we did wrap up a few loose ends on the engine itself. Some of the completed tasks included, the final assembly and installation of the doors and windows, tightening up some plumbing leaks, installing additional diaphragms in the governor for additional adjustment and manufacturing brackets to secure the electrical conduit. In the coming months we will wrap up the remaining tasks on the engine and tender. Sometime in the first part of 2017 we are also hoping to confirm when we will be operating the #18 next.
Finally, as we approach the end of the year we hope that you will consider us for a year end donation. We have been fortunate in being able to do as much as we have thanks to the tremendous amount of support of all of you. We do however still need a few more things to finish up, most notably ties, spikes, ballast and other rail hardware. We will also need support for the insurance and fuel to operate the #18 in the future. And as always, remember to get a tee shirt or DVD for that perfect Christmas gift. THANK YOU TO EVERYONE for making 2016 such a successful year, and here is to an even better 2017!