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Re: Model 40 and others

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  • Charles Vosburgh
    Hi Guys; Stopped in to Cushing Stone Monday to show Jim Louchs the H O scale model, He s going to order one too. He said that someone had been there and
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 28, 2006
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      Hi Guys;  Stopped in to Cushing Stone Monday to show Jim Louchs the H O scale model,  He's going to order one too.  He said that someone had been there and took a lot of pictures of the engine.  He believes that they were from the North Creek tourist line.  He said there was a lot of interest in buying the unit but as for now, no sale.  Also,  I had a talk with Tim who owns the freight house in Nelliston,  He is in the process of buying a former NYC passenger car that is located in PA.  He hopes to be able to set it up near the freight house.  He also extended an invitation to our group when we have our annual meeting to tour his progress.  More news on both as it becomes available.  Charlie
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Monday, February 27, 2006 11:51 PM
      Subject: [FJGRailroad] From The Archives Sperry Car part 4

      So I started my first day on the Sperry Car at Watertown NY. It was fairly
      cool as is often the case in the Adirondacks in early June. As I said in the
      earlier installment, I was shown the basics of how to set up the car. Then I
      climbed aboard, had a cup of coffee and a cigarette and we began the day.
      (By the way this was at a time when  the real dangers and stupidity of
      smoking were not as obvious as today).

      Anyway I spent about 15 minutes in the detector room trying to figure out
      what was going on. I recall the Chief telling me to "Stand there" to his
      left and slightly behind him so I could see what was going on. I did not
      know it right then but he did not expect me to last the week.

      About 15 minutes went by and then I was taken up front to the enginman's
      position. I had spent lots of time in the cabs of EMDs and ALCOs. The
      control stand of a Sperry Car was, in comparison, simple. I took a
      photograph of the engineman's position on the SRS 145 and I will use it to
      describe the configuration.

      First you sat right up front. The window looking forward was about 30"x 45".
      On the right at about 2 oclock was a white phone that was the intercom
      beween the engineman and the detector room.

      At about 5 oclock was the throttle and in front of that was the reverser. At
      six oclock was the brake handle.

      To the left of that at about 7 o'clock was a square box with a speedometer
      on the top left, and RPM gauge on he top right. Below this were three lights
      that would tell you the position of the detector carraige on the rear truck.
      There were toggle switches below that which the operator used to lift either
      the right or left or both carraiges. Lifting the carraige activated the
      light. Below that are two buzzers that you use to tell the operator in the
      detector room what carraige you are going to lift.

      There is a side window on the rigth with an arm rest and a rear view mirror
      so you can see backing up.

      The top of the box was where you put your cigaretes, coffee, soda
      etc...............

      So we started off and I was allowed to watch the goings on in the detector
      room for 15 minutes or a half hour then went up front. I sat down after
      watching the operator and they stood behind me while I became the student. I
      guess there was some conversation between the chief and the operator who was
      tutoring me because after about 45 minutes I found myself alone. At least
      that is what I thought. Every so often I would catch the operator hanging
      onto the side ladder watching me. I was never so surprised as when I heard
      something, turned around and saw the chief watching me from the kitchen
      door.

      I pretty much spent the whole morning up front and there was always someone
      there when we came to a frog to make sure I didn't  ----up lifting the
      carriages. This will be an important point later.

      I did get a chance to sit in the detector room for a portion of that
      afternoon and actually get on the ground and see how the hand wand test
      worked.  I guess that should be the next thing I could explain. When the
      operator, looking at the main tape, sees a sqwiggle and there is no joint,
      then he gives one buzz to the engineman who then stops. The engineman would
      then look in the rear view mirror and see the operator on the bottom step at
      the rear of the car giving the hand signal to back up. Perhaps somewhat
      unlike the railroad's hand signals the speed of the movemet of the
      operator's hand told you how close you were and to put the air on. This will
      be hard to descibe but I will try. I am basically looking at the operator's
      back and his left arm. He is backing me up with a circular arm motion. As we
      got closer his arm movemenmt would slow way down and then there would be a
      sudden clenching of the fist as you drew your fist from your left side about
      shoulder height to your chest out of sight of the engineman. This was a stop
      signal. At the same time the operator would drop to the ground and as the
      car came to a stop, the operator would step behind the car.This is another
      important point that will come up later.

      The next thing would be to grab the bottle of soapy water and wet the rail.
      Then you take the wand which was a hand search unit that you move along the
      top of the rail. There was an ocsillascope in a yellow metal box hanging
      just below where the coupler would be if the Sperry Car had one on the
      detector end. Moving the wand along the rail would allow you to see up close
      what the condition of the rail was.  If there was a defect you marked it
      with a yellow lumber crayon and a piece of green DY tape covered with a
      piece of ballast so that the following railroad personel (usually in a high
      rail, sometimes in a burro crane) could see it and figure out what to do.

      I will stop here for a moment to explain something about how the detector
      car interacts with the railroad people. If there is a serious defect
      generally the railroad will change the rail on the spot. It is up to the
      railroad not the Sperry people. The Track Supervisor usually rode the car
      during the inspection. Sperry people explained the severety of the defect
      but the railroad decided what to do about it.


      As it is getting late I will close here. Tomorrow we will begin our trip
      down the "Hojack" to places like Pulaski, the creamery track, Woodard and
      the waterlevel mainline. We will hear about the sink hole, Memorial Day
      weekend, washing the Sperry Car............

      I had no idea the amount of detail I would go into so it appears that we
      will discuss the M form, the carriage problem and the Pennsy Signal debate
      along with garden hose incident and the Ossining Football Jersey. Later we
      will talk about Franklinville,  sliding to a stop on the grade, lookin out
      for snakes and riding the GG-1s. Also flying high over the Susquehana,
      Nuclear problems and running backwards, stalling on the crossovers and
      cooking among the brakeshoes...................

      Until then we will wait until the next installment of "From The
      Archives"...................


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