Museum Milestones 2012
Track work: During the Spring Work Weekend there was track work on Cock-Eye Curve and north of Alna Center. On the Sunday of Work Weekend a crew laid 30 feet of track in Wiscasset for the Creamery Car. More maintenance was done throughout the year. Sixty feet of track on the spur was removed so that grading could more easily happen.
Rolling stock: The “Big Joe” tamper was modified to run on hydraulics for some of its functions, and a chain drive was mounted on it so that it can move under its own power.
Mower Car: Volunteer Mike Fox built a mower car, using a side-mounted mower bar. The car was used to trim grass immediately next to the track during the summer months.
Crane Car: Mike Fox took home parts and pieces to a standard gauge crane car that had been donated to the Museum years ago, had been dismantled, and then never went any further. Mike regauged it to two foot, and rebuilt and reassembled the body. The car returned to the Museum in December, and has since been put to use helping to move the snow plow on the diesel engine.
Creamery Car: Car 65 began to come together in the winter, with frame and box being constructed in the winter, then trucks, door hardware, painting, and everything else coming together in the spring. A special freight was run on June 9, before loading the car on a flatbed that same day and delivering it to downtown Wiscasset the following morning, for positioning by the waterfront pier. After filling the car with displays, the grand opening was held on the evening of July 4. The car was opened every day until the pier stores closed for the season.
Locomotive 9: The cylinder saddle was attached to the frame, then some of the parts and pieces started going back on the frame, while it was upside-down and readily accessible to the overhead crane. Then both frame halves were moved behind the boiler of #9, and at the end of March the boiler was jacked up and the frame went in underneath. Considerable work went in to uniting the cylinder saddle to the smokebox. The two frame halves were united. Work began on running gear, including shoes, wedges, and truing of driver bearings. The frame was painted.
Restrooms: Work began on constructing restrooms to the north of the Percival house in the spring, with the construction of concrete forms during the Spring work weekend, a trench for utilities dug and covered up in July, the pad poured in August, and building construction in September. The building was fully enclosed, the interior insulated and sheetrocked by the end of the year.
Grounds: Our contractor spent time working on what will become the “North Yard”, grading and pushing dirt around. This area will eventually host a car storage shed, a 3-stall roundhouse, turntable, coal storage, and some outdoor storage tracks.
There was a substantial grounds clean-up effort at the Fall Work Weekend, in October. The area to the west of the car shop was cleaned up, moving the tank from the former B&SRR tank car and moving rail. The coal bin area was removed. A saw mill, which had been set up several years ago midway between Sheepscot and Alna Center in anticipation of renewal and use, was dismantled and returned to Sheepscot – it will eventually be set up at Alna Center.
Crews spent July and August cutting brush along the right of way.
Record crowds: Our Victorian Christmas again had records crowds (our third year running), over 1150 people over the whole day. Most trains went out with 4 cars. Train operation was switched between diesel and steam on every other train.