Enjoy this update on the Southern Railway No. 4501 Rebuild from the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum‘s “Smoke & Cinders” newsletter. It reads:
BIT BY BIT, PIECE BY PIECE — Toward the end of a winter workday, Locomotives 4501 and 630 sit quietly inside TVRM’s Soule Shops in East Chattanooga. In this view from January 24, progress can be seen in the restoration of #4501, while #630 receives off season maintenance in preparation for return to service prior to Spring. Number 630’s annual inspection required separation of the coal tender from the locomotive in order to inspect the drawbar, removal of a section of boiler jacketing to repair several stay bolts, and elective modification of the main crank pins to improve lubrication over the rod brass and exterior pin surfaces. Work was completed in time for the locomotive to enter service in late February in advance of the scheduled 21st Century Steam trip from Chattanooga to Attalla on March 2 (and subsequent outings to/from Bristol, Roanoke, Norfolk, and beyond.) For #4501, its major rebuild was continuing with rebuilding of the lead truck, trailing truck frame replacement and changeover to roller bearings, final firebox repairs with the interior and exterior throat sheet patches, and continuation of the feed water heater and pump installation along with all associated plumbing. With plenty of work yet to go, the progress thus far is amazing and the level of craftsmanship is astounding. Thanks to everyone who helps keep TVRM moving forward.
(All photos by Steve Freer unless otherwise noted.)