May 2021 Update

By | Fire Up 2100, News, Progress, Video | No Comments

With your help, we’re delighted to say that last month we passed a significant milestone with the restoration of Reading 2100. Thanks to your donations, over 550 staybolts were welded into the firebox of the locomotive. In this video update, Jason Johnson of Gemini Industrial Machine explains the welding process.

Other work done by volunteers in the past 30 days includes:

  • The ultrasound survey of the boiler is near completion. Areas that are very tight to get into, such as by the frame and around spring rigging, will be done when the locomotive is raised up to help replace staybolt sleeves around the combustion chamber.
  • In preparation for the welding in of the staybolts, volunteers did a final cleaning of the firebox’s interior side sheets along with a final polish of the staybolts themselves. Tools were created that aided the welding process. Caps with bolts in them helped press the staybolts against the outer firebox sleeves, along with shims to hold and align the staybolts in place on the inside sheet, were created to help aid the welders.
  • The process to remove staybolt sleeves that our boiler contractor marked has also begun around the combustion chamber of the firebox.

April 2021 Update

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The month of March proved to be a productive one for American Steam Railroad volunteers. April is planned to be a busier one yet, with the welders from Gemini Industries scheduled to install the staybolts into the firebox. Much of the highlighted work in the past month includes:

  • Continued work on the ultrasound survey of the locomotive. ASR crews have now dismantled many pipes, fittings, and appliances on the back head of the boiler in the cab, which will help better facilitate readings. The piping and valves from the sand dome were also removed to help with this project.
  • The bell was reinstalled on top of the smokebox after it had been cleaned and polished. It has been covered to help protect its shine and be seen by the public during open houses at the Midwest Railway Preservation Society West 3rd Street roundhouse.
  • Measurements were taken from the fire door air cylinder from Mad River & NKP Museum’s Nickel Plate 757 Berkshire locomotive.  The dimensions taken will help create a new fire door set up, and we appreciate Mad River & NKP assistance in this project.
  • Staybolts were prepped and cleaned in anticipation of the welders who will install them very soon into Reading 2100’s firebox.