Friday, December 16, 2011

New Roof on the Car Barn

Our miracle man, Bill Shepherd, has done it again; during his Fall pilgramage to JT one of his everlasting signs that he has been here before will be the new roof on the Car Barn.
The old rolled roof and the South wind have fought for years and the wind won. She would work the roof and all the roofing nails would just pull out everytime we would get a good blast.
Finished in the same material as the Station, when viewed from just the right angles they match and fool the eye that they are the same building. This welcome addition to the grounds will protect the contents from the elements for years to come. Thanks again Bill from all of us at JT.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Vice Presidents Foundation Weekend

Vice Presidents Foundation Weekend, December 10, 11 2011

Mike Thompson, he is the Vice President, wanted to get a jump on pouring the rest of the foundations for the Trestle to the Sky on the High Line. They are five bents left plus the head wall, leaving us six more to form up and pour so he can have the dimensions for the heights of the bents left to be constructed.

The dates were thrown around and this weekend worked best for most, you learn early that one weekend does not work for all. Allan and Lynn Ratliff arrived Thursday and I made it out late that night as well. Bruce Thompson ambled in Friday afternoon with Mike and Nathan showing up after dinner. Greg and Becky Ratliff finished the Friday night arrivals. Saturday Morning was the Lunar eclipse, I caught a look at it as it dropped below the edge of the hill around 5:15 am.

Mike was up not much after dawn and we all got an early start on the task at hand. With the portable power on the hill and the table saw at the end of track/trestle the forms for all that remained were finished by noon. Allan on the GE 47 tonner made plenty of trips up and down the grade for this or that during the morning in addition to preparing the train for concrete duty. Before we broke for lunch we cleaned up the site of anything that was not needed or in the way on the hill to make it easier to get around when pouring started after lunch.

Paul Westover made it out and brought us a load of track panels that he puts together at home. After a quick photo and text on the phone, showing the progress to a few that could not make it out the pouring project started. The batch plant was stocked with bags of ready-mix out of Tedder Shed, water hose stretched to location, etc.

I ran the mixer and loaded buckets down the hill. Allan ran the GE and string of flats up and down the grade. Bruce had switch duty at Brown, the High Line switch, to help speed up train movements. Mike, Greg, Paul and Gary Conley schlepped buckets from the end of the trestle to whichever form they were filling. We had four set of buckets going on the fill, so the wait at the top or bottom was minimal, heck, until we got a good rhythm going there was not much time to even get in a sip of beer.

Communications went up or down on the train. Number of bags used, how many forms filled, keep them coming, two then one more load. The sun had long disappeared at Tedder but was still out up on the hill, Allan said there was quite a difference in both locations. Twenty-one bags of mix, plus the other stuff that goes into the concoction went up by train in a little over two hours, about fifteen round trips. Bill Shepherd added a little to the finishing touches as the crew wrapped up for the day. A good accomplishment, usually two days worth of work done in one, all because we had the help to do it, thank you all involved.

Sunday, we have forms to pull off the concrete and a little edge breaking to do. Clean up of the form wood as we will not be needing that stuff for a while, probably the fire wood pile will be a good place to stack it. We need to run a string line over from on end to the other to get the numbers for the bent heights. The steel is purchased and the square tube is at Mike’s to be cut, so that the next project will be at Thompson Garage Floor Welding.

Should have a few bents welded up by New Years, and the rest by Mid January. Great weekend, see you at the next one?