G Scale Model Train Forum banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
360 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Having just purchased a Bachmann Climax, I was looking at some pics in their original catalog. There was a pic of a Climax in a logging operation which appeared to be running on actual log rails., that almost seems impossible! It was mentioned, too, they could operate on wood rails. Some of the trestle and bridgeworks were incredible....just stacked up. What neat ideas for a short line operation coming out of the woods. Has one been done with log rails , or other simulated version here? Some of their(Climax Co.) logging cars looked neat for modelling.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,001 Posts
There are two things I've always wanted to do that have become very doable with self contained battery power.

One was to have a creek crossing without a bridge where the tracks disappear beneath the water and the other was a pole road. Both strictly logging stuff and both actually done in prototype.

The biggest problem for the latter would be good looking double flanged wheels that worked well and making switches. The over wide wheels might pose a challenge to install as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
360 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
I'll check that thread out, in a minute. As I have just begun my career in large scale, I was looking for ways to start out on a smaller scale. The logging route seemed a natural. A little Shay, or Climax putting along to carry logs to the mainline, or mill seems a logical way to start. I would guess there are numerous ways to build a short rail. Thought about wood square-like 1/4" or even dowels. I guess if one looked at some of the online metal suppliers, one could find something like 1/8th to 1/4" brass strip rolls that could be fastened to wood rail-if one didn't want to go battery power. Possible with some thought, there might be a way to add a temporary outside flange..like soldering on a thin washer. Maybe CA would even work. A smoking Donkey and a rough made crane and we're off making money hauling logs out!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
360 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
What about just using metal rod, painting it and cleaning the top portions/inside for pickup? Guess brass rod would of course be best. Use dowels, stained for ties........
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,001 Posts
For track power you could possibly rough up some dowels to represent logs and cut a slot on top on a tablesaw (using a jig to hold them in place) and insert a brass or nickel silver strip leaving the top just proud of the surface. To join sections drill a hole up from the bottom of the pole rail for a wire to be soldered to the strip prior to pushing it into the pole rail (dowel) for electrical continuity between sections. This would hide the metal a bit.

There was also strap rail in the early days (not neccessarily just logging) where the rail was wooden with strap steel attached on top. This could be replicated with brass or better yet nickel silver. Possibly stainless would be good if you can find some thin strips although it would probably be harder to cut.

I think it's doable using track power. I only mentioned battery because it'd be less work.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,746 Posts
Bill-

Looking through some photos, the lumber companies in the area just a few miles north of you (Davison, Wilder, et al) did use some pole rails and steel rails.

The Davidson Hicks and Greene lumber company did have Climaxes, and had a large mill there in Monterey, TN.

The hills in that area were chock full of logging and narrow gauge back in the day, but due being here in the South, not much is known about them unlike Colorado, Ohio, California, Pensylvania et al...
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
389 Posts
From Shaylocomotives.com, here's another prototype example of a loco with "pole-road" wheels - in this case, a small "T-boiler" 2 truck Shay
(or maybe more accurately - what's left of one!
).

Abandoned T-Boiler Shay



http://shaylocomotives.com/ at one time had a text write-up from someone who actually examined this little Shay's remains - it was found at the end of a an abandoned length of conventional track
- apparently the wheel design (note they DO have conventional flanges, but VERY wide tires!) permitted it to operate on BOTH regular rails & "pole roads". It was found JUST OFF the rail ends, as if it had rolled off on it's own. According to the website, it was Lima construction # 196, built 1887, 13 tons, 42" gauge. Last owner (as of 1909) was Sumter Pine & Cypress Co., Sumter, SC (where this Shay was found in the woods!). Some GOOD news
- a recovery is planned by the property owner!


Tom
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
360 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Right next to me-about 500'- is the remnants of an old logging trail. Whether there was a rail system, i don't know. I live on a State Highway, across the street is what's left of the roadbed that ran from Monterey to Crossville(?), I guess. In the past year, BNSF has reopened the line, extending through Monterey, going Northward, I think. This area was definitely logging area, thousands, if not millions of acres of woods. As far as wood rails, there are probably several ways to do it. Embedding a brass strip sounds plausible, the most difficult part being feeding it through a saw. I'm sure someone can come up with a solution! Building a working donkey and rig like the site I posted is an 'I want one'! Sure wish I had that little steam engine I had as a kid! When you look at those old pics of logging, you have to marvel at their ingenuity and their toughness! Think, though, I've found a genre to model that's a good starting point.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
360 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Man, wouldn't it be cool to go out hiking in the woods and stumble upon an old Shay... Climax. etc.! I need to talk to a few of the really old timers around here....before they're gone. Maybe there's one lurking out there!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
79 Posts
Jim Bogle the photographer of the photo of the "lost shay" that Tom provided a link to described finding the shay to me in an email:

I took the photo in 1999 of the Shay in the South Carolina swamp, found at the list of surviving Shays:

http://www.shaylocomotives.com/data/lima/sn-196.htm

Or:

http://www.shaylocomotives.com/surviving/0196surv.jpg

Finding that locomotive was quite a trip. A local lawyer, who had grown up hunting and fishing in that swamp, took me in from its eastern side, near Wedgefield. We had to pass through locked gates of at least 2 private hunting preserves; it was during a very dry spell,and some of the roads/trails we drove on would be under water at normal conditions.

I am not sure how the research was done as to the engine number, mfr and other details. That all came on the website after I mailed them the photo.

To the rear of the locomotive is a tree, mayber 18-24 inches in diameter, growing between the rails. I was told a lot of the engine was cut off during WW II scrap drives, by boy scout organizations.

There have long been rumors of 2 locomotives in this swamp, but we now think there's only one.
I'm not aware of Matt Conrad's work, or what happened to it, and don't know how the steamlocomotive.info site came up with another source for the Shay that I saw. The guy that took me into the swamp did not know of another abandoned locomotive, but, hey, it's a big swamp.

Matt Conrad had a website describing his adventure in find the "lost shay" with numerous photographs. Unfortunately his site is no longer up. However, from an email I sent to Jim Bogle:

Went through my saved e-mails and found that I mentioned Matt Conrad's account in an April 2003 posting. At that time the web page was still on the Internet, but without photos. Since I also provided a link to the article I had something solid to work with.

http://www.geocities.com/scrmcurator/modern/lostshay/index.html

Attempted to run the link through the Wayback Machine at http://www.archive.org/web/web.php without any luck. Then did a search on Google for "Lost Shay SC" and came up with this 2001 post http://listserv.dartmouth.org/scripts/wa.exe?A2=ind0103E&L=SMRF&T=0&F=&S
=&P=3024 Which if you read below Gordon's message you will find Conrad's account.

Again, the link is 404. but I did managed to make a copy of it which I can post if anyone is interested. It is a rather long report. No pictures though.

Here is what Jim Bogle emailed after reading Conrad's report:

I feel certain that Conrad and I visited the same Shay, 2 years apart, me in 1999. The description about how he got there is very close to my memory, and it's unlikely there would be 2 Shays, same description, in same area.

Gauge is right, description of stuff torched off matches what I saw. I have a photo of me holding that drive shaft/universal, which I had dug up out of the ground when I was there, and left on the ground next to the engine.

I had heard the story about the tree growing between the engine and its tender, actually it's growing between the rails to the rear of the tender.

Joe
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,746 Posts
Posted By Cap'nBill on 01/15/2009 4:54 PM
Right next to me-about 500'- is the remnants of an old logging trail. Whether there was a rail system, i don't know. I live on a State Highway, across the street is what's left of the roadbed that ran from Monterey to Crossville(?), I guess. In the past year, BNSF has reopened the line, extending through Monterey, going Northward, I think. This area was definitely logging area, thousands, if not millions of acres of woods. As far as wood rails, there are probably several ways to do it. Embedding a brass strip sounds plausible, the most difficult part being feeding it through a saw. I'm sure someone can come up with a solution! Building a working donkey and rig like the site I posted is an 'I want one'! Sure wish I had that little steam engine I had as a kid! When you look at those old pics of logging, you have to marvel at their ingenuity and their toughness! Think, though, I've found a genre to model that's a good starting point.


Actually, it is the Nashville and Eastern, operating what is left of the Tennessee Central line East out of Nashville. They are using ex SF locos these days. The line ran all the way to Rockwood, it is extant again when you get to Crab Orchard. Logging lasted until the depression, then all the trees were gone, then it became coal and oil, and the infamous labor problems that came during the depression in the area including sabotage and murder.

As far as existing NG/locos in the woods, you gotta go south to the Tracy City/Chattanooga area. A lot of track and reportedly some steam in the woods. Keep in mind this is not exactly an area to poke around freely.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
360 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
You've probably assumed by now I am right on 70N, you obviously know the area/history well. I've followed the old road bed about 1/3 the way into Crossville, then lose it. I t becomes more evident past Peavine along 70 into Crab Orchard. It would appear the line from there is strictly used by Franklin Mining, going to Rockwood. We have our boat over at Caney Creek on 70, so it's a nice drive all along. We've followed the line to Algood. Some pretty mountain scenery. One can sort of imagine some old 'rail spreaders' chugging around the hills way back. I don't know where the new track goes from Monterey, somewhere to haul sand I was told. I have yet to see a train go through, other than a BNSF loco with ballast a year ago. There was an excursion train from Nashville in the Fall that was well attended.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,746 Posts
Posted By Spule 4 on 01/15/2009 9:02 PM
I know the area fairly well, and I am one of two founders of the Tennessee Central SIG.

The railroad plays "cat and mouse" with 70 from Monterey-east to Rockwood. I was in the Crossville (Dayton Spur) to Crab Orchard area this week, still trying to figure out where the ROW for the Cox Valley narrow gauge line was that ran to Crab Orchard. If you head east, you should come across one of the existing depots and some other artifacts. The road gets really interesting around Franklin Limestone with several large bridges and the only tunnel on the TC.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top