Recently, an historic Porter 0-4-0 compressed air locomotive was donated to the Toronto Railway Historical Association. Above we see it on arrival at the Museum.
Work on restoring the locomotive has begun in earnest. Her is a report by Michael Guy, our Chief Engineer, who is leading a team of volunteers in this work:
"The locomotive came to us in an intact but "stuck"
condition - nothing moved or turned. It was in very good shape for having been
outside on display for sixty years but it was time for some TLC. Over the last
several weeks we have been engaged in stripping it down to the frame which came
with a few challenges but we were successful in getting the wheels and axles
off last week without doing damage to anything important. Only one bolt had to
be drilled out, all the rest of them came out with liberal use of penetrating
oil and soft-hammer persuasion. The pistons and cylinders were looked at first
a few weeks ago and proved to be in A-1 ex-factory condition. This more than
anything else is what encouraged us to proceed. This being a compressed-air
locomotive, the cylinders were not fitted with condensate drains and both had
about a half-pint of oil in them. The air tank is likewise in perfect condition
except for some minor surface corrosion under the sand dome.
wooden cab is not original and is in quite good condition. It will get work
over the winter to replace some siding, the roof membrane and a refinish. All
the sheet metal associated with the cab was rotted away and is being replaced.
The wood pilot beam is being replaced, the wood drag beam is being repaired.
In the photos below you can see the present state of the
project. Disassembly is complete and we are set to begin cleaning and
reassembling components. In fact this has already started with cleaning of
frame, axleboxes, pedestal liners and wedges. The big surprise here was that
such a tiny locomotive actually had refinements such as liners and wedges.
The four leaf springs have been disassembled and cleaned. We only found one
broken leaf which is being replaced by a local spring shop. Our thanks go to
John Hatsios at Hardick Spring for expert advice and assistance.
The next challenge is the state of the axle journals which
are heavily corroded. It seems likely we will need to re-machine them and fit
split sleeves to bring the diameter back up. There may be other options and we
are looking into alternative approaches to this. If anyone reading this has
applicable expertise, please contact me off list." - Michael Guy
Click on each image for a closer look!
Posting and images by Michael Guy