Friends of the East Broad Top
A nonprofit society dedicated to the preservation and restoration
of the East Broad Top Railroad National Historic Landmark
Things we do

Rockhill Furnace Work Session: September 19-20, 2009

The nineth restoration weekend of 2009 was held September 19-20. Ideal weather was present all weekend with warm days and cool evenings with barely a cloud in the sky.

The September 2009 crew.

Attendees included Bill Adams, Richard Culp, Andy VanScyoc, Dave Phillips, Richard Shell, Wade Woodcock, Steve Jacobs, Jim Esposito, Dave Dietz, Lee Rainey, Bob Harris, Ed Kosol, Jim Sucke, Charlie Wootton, Jim Bacon, Mark Yahner, Dave Richards, Tom Kozub, Dick Ullery, Tom Diehl, Chris Coleman, Matt Rader, Bob Goldby, Judy Goldby, Ralph Davidson, and Reggie Arford.

New Arrivals

Welcome to first time volunteer Ed Kosol!

Shops Steam Engine

Steam engine
The Steam Engine in motion.

Work continued on fine tuning the operation of the engine. The bearing for the flywheel axle was opened and examined. It was found that the bearing was a bit tight and this had caused some excessive heating. The bearing was adjusted with shims and reinstalled. Also the valve packing was renewed to reduce leakage.

The engine was test run in preparation for its public debut next month. With the improvements the engine ran considerably faster on the same amount of air.


Machine Shop Roof

Roof work
Framing work nears completion.

Work on the reconstruction of the eastern side of the Machine Shop roof continued from the July and August sessions. The damaged roof structure was removed including roof sheeting and wood substructure. An all new wood substructure was constructed in its place designed to match the original. During this session, the last of the framing to be removed was completed and the installation of new framing was also completed. Installation of roofing boards was completed.


Combine #14

A vertical member is cut to accommodate the new sill.

The installation of mahogany laminations into the west sill of the car was completed. Mortising, planing, cutting, gluing and clamping were again the order of the work session, as well as the threading of new tie rods to tie the laminated side sides into the original frame.


Shop Roofs

Coating the roofs
Roof coating goes on the Machine Shop.

On Sunday, application of roof coatings on shop roofs continued. Applications focused on the Machine Shop around the Tool Room, the M-3 leanto of the Electrical Shop and the south valley between the Boiler Shop and Locomotive Shop.



Finished windows
The completed Foundry windows.

The four foundry window sashes previously restored were cleaned and reinstalled in the west wall of the foundry overlooking the main shops entrance. One disintegrated sash guide and two stops were replaced, and a shim was added along the bottom of one sash to better seal against the sill. The windows were then screened over for security and bird exclusion.


Coal Dock

Installed doors
The two new doors for the coal dock after installation.

The two new doors completed last session were moved to the Coal Dock. The old and heavily corroded door track was removed and similar replacement track installed. The hardware was installed on the doors and they were hung and tested. On Sunday hasps and locks were installed on the doors to allow the interior of the dock to be used as secure storage.

The Water Column pit was pumped out to allow continued work on clearing the pit drain.


Lumber Shed

M-4 and lumber shed
Volunteers move track into position as M-4 delivers ties.

Part of the intention of initially clearing out the inside of the coal dock and reconstructing the doors was for the storage of the new Combine #16 trucks. Unfortunately with the leaf springs installed they were found to be too wide to fit. As an alternative a crew set about cleaning out one of the stalls of the long Lumber Shed at the south end of the shops complex. The materials in that stall were moved to other stalls where similar materials were already stored. Also the EBT snowplow was moved to a better storage position. A jigger track was installed in the stall to receive the trucks.


Combine #16 Trucks

Coated trucks
The trucks after metal primer and wood sealer were applied.

At long last the pair of replica wood frame trucks under construction for over twenty years were delivered to the railroad on August 22nd. Members of the restoration crew were present to perform the unload. During this session all the wood portions of the trucks were given a protective coating of boiled linseed oil and all the metal parts received a coat of metal primer.


Boiler Shop

With the replacement sill section installed last session, the load bearing post was addressed. The bottom 10 inches of the rear of the post had been removed due to rot. A large block of used oak was located and had to be split to allow it to fit into the wood machines. It was cut and planed to size and installed in the post using polyurethane adhesive. The patch was clamped in place and the post set on it to allow it to cure.

Shops Machinery: Power Roll

Cleaning and lubrication of the Power Roll in the Boiler Shop continued. The two thickness adjustment wedges were removed and thoroughly cleaned and degreased. The wedge surfaces and screws were lubricated and they were reinstalled and covered to keep dirt out. The pit under the gearing was cleaned of decades of trash and thick layers of crud. Both ends of the frame received additional cleaning to remove grime. Buffing of the rollers continued.

Lubrication began on the overhead line shaft that provided power to the Roll. Dried lubricant was removed from the four lubrication wells and fresh oil applied. The shaft began moving noticeably more easily, but the lubricant will be allowed to penetrate until next session hopefully resulting in even freer motion.

Constructed off site, a gasoline power rig was brought in to test operation of the Power Roll. The flat belt for the rig was found to be too short so a support stand was constructed to bring the rig up two feet. The original input belt to the shaft was disconnected and stored and the new feed belt was cut and laced to fit around the input pulley. The rig was successful at half power but the line shaft lubrication and other adjustments will be needed for a full power test.

Shop Stacks

Work continued on stabilizing of the bases of the shops stacks. Last session the reinforcement legs were completed and preliminarily attached to the stacks. This session dozens of holes were drilled in the flanges of the stacks to attach the four reinforcement legs each to them. The steel was hard and thick so the drill bits had to be resharpened about every four holes and one drill unit was burned out in the process.


In preparation for later reinstallation, several restored sashes in storage were cleaned.

Brush Crew

Some additional brush cutting was done along the south leg of the wye.

Next Session

The next session, last one for 2009, will be held November 7-8, 2009. See you there!

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