July 2009 Presidentís Report

By Ira Pollack

 

††††††††††† In this monthís report I will tell you things are moving along at the Museum. Progress is being made with the 0814 forty-four ton locomotive. Justin Chapin has been working on replacing the two air reservoir tanks with new ones purchased this winter. We are hoping to use this locomotive as power for the Railyard Local once these repairs are complete. This will be much more economical for the Museum in the long run. It uses less fuel, plus there is the potential of using it year round for our train rides.

††††††††††† In the yard, work continues with tie removal and overall cleanup. I have filled yet another 20-yard dumpster, this time with rotten ties, over the past several weeks. I am hoping that in the future we can have a dumpster at the ready while we are doing tie replacement so we do not accumulate them as we have in the past. I am trying to concentrate my efforts near the turntable and pumphouse to get this area cleaned up once and for all.

††††††††††† Speaking of the pumphouse, John Ivansco and Dave McKee have been making great progress on the restoration of the building. They have rebuilt the windows and doors and have replaced sections of the clapboard siding. Paint has been purchased, and before too long that too will be complete. John plans on painting it the original NHRR scheme of tan with brown trim. I also am planning on building a platform in front of the structure to aid passengers in disembarking from the Railyard Local. Additional funds still are needed for this and for the restoration of the building.

††††††††††† It has been kind of hard this year scheduling any kind of work sessions on track with all the damp weather, but I am hoping that will change soon. I would like to tamp sections of Track 42. Through time many of the rail joints have sunk and need leveling throughout the curved areas. We now will be able to use the rebuilt jackhammers and compressor to help in this project. Jim Teer and Dave Kopycinski have been oiling and lubricating our switchwork to ease in operation of the switches. This is one more necessary maintenance function that must be done for better operation of our yard and Railyard Local. My thanks go out to them for their help.

††††††††††† As always, I am continually talking about the projects needing to be done and lack of money to do them. This season, with our budgetary restraints, I am concentrating

on projects that have funding behind them. The turntable is a good example, and a great project that can be worked on. I propose and plan to begin cleaning up the lower main girders of the rust and dirt that has accumulated there over the years. This was recommended to us by Macton Engineers, who inspected the turntable this past year. After cleaning, I would like to use rust converter, then paint these areas. Obviously much more work is needed on this unique artifact and centerpiece for the Museum, but this will buy us time until funding for the deck replacement and bearings is available. This project, as always, needs your time and energy. I am at the Museum every Saturday to help set you up with materials to do this project, if you can spare any of your time.

††††††††††† I would like you to know that I am continuing our oil reclamation project. I plan to remove all of the old motor oil and diesel fuel that has accumulated in the yard over the years. Several recycling companies will be cleaning these materials out of the yard once and for all. In the future whatever new materials are generated through our operations will be removed immediately. We cannot continue to store these liquids on our site. They are a hazard and a definite accident waiting to happen.

††††††††††† I talk to you about what is happening every month or at least what I am trying to get to happen. Many of these projects and goals have been going on for years. My goal is to clean up our yard. It has been filled with a variety of hazards, getting rid of which has almost been beyond my means. My goal is to have a safe working environment for our volunteers and especially for our visitors. The work load for me and the very few volunteers has almost consumed me. My appeals for help seem to fall on deaf ears. These things I talk of need to be done. Very often now I will do them by myself when and if I have to. My priorities and goals remain the same for this Museum. I, or should I say we, have made progress, but there is a very long way to go, even longer now without your help.

††††††††††† In next monthís edition I will continue to reminisce about our early days as a Museum, on acquiring rolling stock and beginning to realize what a potential we had and what we could do. There are many other things happening at the DRM, but I do not have enough room to tell you everything that goes on. I do have some plans in the making for some new events and possibly some new equipment. I will tell you more as these things develop.