Author Topic: NKP 765 to recieve roller bearing upgrade, fundraiser begins  (Read 1938 times)

nathansixchime

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NKP 765 to recieve roller bearing upgrade, fundraiser begins
« on: February 02, 2010, 04:35:50 PM »
The Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society announces the beginning of a major fundraising effort to cover the cost of upgrading a significant component of vintage steam locomotive Nickel Plate Road no. 765, a fully restored and operating 1944-built steam locomotive that was once on display in Fort Wayne’s Lawton Park before being removed and restored between 1974 and 1979 in the first locomotive preservation movement of its kind in the world for public enjoyment.

In a move to prepare the locomotive for high speed mainline passenger excursion service around the midwest, the FWRHS is converting the journal or “friction” bearing trucks of the locomotive tender to modern roller bearing wheel sets. Roller bearing wheels are more reliable and efficient and are standard in the railroad industry today.

This upgrade, historically enacted by the Nickel Plate Railroad in the 1950s on a number of their steam locomotives, expedites ferry moves on host railroads, eases engine maintenance, and makes the 765 a formidable machine, capable of meeting and exceeding railroad regulations and aides the Society in pursuing a broad spectrum  of operations for public operation and exhibition.

This upgrade will cost over $60,000 and funds must be raised to meet deadlines to propose and secure operating plans that could see the engine operate in Indiana, Michigan, Illinois and other states. Donations are tax deductible and may be made by mail or online at www.fortwaynerailroad.org. As a non-profit, all volunteer organization, members of the public are encouraged to join in the process of railroad preservation as the Society moves to save, preserve and exhibit significant items from Fort Wayne’s industrious railroad history.

In an era where “high speed rail” has become a buzzword, no. 765 represents a bygone era of fast passenger and freight operation, where trains operating out of Fort Wayne, Indiana often reached speeds in excess of 100 miles an hour. Moreover, no. 765 is one of class of steam locomotive specifically designed to haul heavy tonnage at mainline speeds.

In 2009, following a comprehensive rebuilding that lasted from from 1999 to 2005, no. 765 returned to passenger excursion service after necessary work sidelined the locomotive in 1993, following fifteen years of exposition through thirteen states and over 52,000 miles. 2009 saw the 765 enjoyed by over 40,000 people through a variety of public excursions in Indiana and Michigan. In its second and third careers, the locomotive has pulled well over 100,000 passengers thanks to donations, support from members and volunteers, and meaningful support from today’s railroads which recognize the locomotive as a valuable public relations tool and ambassador for the American railroad institution.

The FWRHS presently maintains no. 765 in its locomotive shop at Casad Industrial Park in New Haven, Indiana. Volunteer work sessions occur every weekend, in addition to seasonal train rides, engineer for an hour sessions, facility and equipment rentals, other experiences with historic equipment are offered. Admission is free and all ages are welcome.

For more information on the FWRHS or Nickel Plate Road no. 765, contact Secretary Kelly Lynch at kelly@765.org. The FWRHS is also on Twitter @ftwaynerailroad, @nickelplate765, and on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/fortwaynerailroad

Visit the FWRHS’ table at the Fort Wayne Celebration of Railroading at Baker Street Station on February 27th and 28th.
Kelly Lynch

Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society
www.fortwaynerailroad.org

itm426

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Re: NKP 765 to recieve roller bearing upgrade, fundraiser begins
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2010, 04:48:08 PM »
I'm assuming that the FWRHS does not have a set of roller bearings for the tender? They have to buy new ones?

nathansixchime

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Re: NKP 765 to recieve roller bearing upgrade, fundraiser begins
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2010, 05:14:53 PM »
That's correct, Will. Rather than take used roller bearings or try to modify other wheelsets, we're contracting ORX, a reputable wheel set manufacturer, to fashion completely new roller bearings.
Kelly Lynch

Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society
www.fortwaynerailroad.org

itm426

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Re: NKP 765 to recieve roller bearing upgrade, fundraiser begins
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2010, 06:22:36 PM »
Is there anything wrong with reusing roller bearings from another tender? Hypothetically.

nathansixchime

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Re: NKP 765 to recieve roller bearing upgrade, fundraiser begins
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2010, 06:26:59 PM »
Not entirely, though the measurements have to be exact. For example, a Buckeye set from one freight car or another tender may be one or two inches off in wheel height or truck bore, which would require some modifications. A set of Buckeyes that had been converted to rollers was discovered, but the measurements were off an inch or two, it lacked brake rigging, was not entirely open face, and would have ran up costs in modifications and shipping.

Instead of having to modify a used set, an entirely new set is being fabricated to streamline and insure the entire process.
Kelly Lynch

Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society
www.fortwaynerailroad.org