Western Coal & Coke #1
Updated June 28, 2006
Western Coal & Coke #1 is a 1913 vintage Ten-Wheeler steam locomotive. It was added to the museum’s collection in 1965 and made serviceable in 1970. It then became the primary duty engine for the next two decades until removed from service in 1994. It is lightweight, which is good for our 100-year old railroad line, and economical to run. It is also our least costly restoration project and therefore the best prospect for returning a steam locomotive to service in the shortest amount of time.
Mid-Continent's shop forces (members who volunteer their time and skills for locomotive repair) began work on the WC&C #1 in 2003 when they removed the boiler shell from the frame. Since that time they, or the contractors we have brought in for specific tasks, have fabricated a new smokebox, the front and rear tubes sheets, patched all three boiler courses, riveted the course seams, and installed many, many staybolts to secure the firebox. You can read about these accomplishments in greater detail by clicking on the shop update link here.
At the prompting of one of our major donors to the steam program, a new work plan and budget were devised with the goal of completing the restoration in one year’s time. This new work plan balances the use of museum volunteers with a greater reliance on the skills of professional craftsmen. Predictably the use of contracted services increases the project’s cost significantly. The advantage, though, is that it accelerates the pace at which the work gets done.
To view the Cost Estimate Summary, click here.
The June 2006 edition of the museum’s member magazine Railway Gazette, contains a more detailed presentation on the repair plan and budget. And for those interested in the history of the WC&C #1, the June 2005 Gazette features a well-illustrated article on the locomotive’s manufacturer, the Montreal Locomotive Works. Copies of either magazine are available at $2.50 each, which includes postage and handling. Orders can be placed and donations made by contacting the museum’s office at 1-800-930-1385 or via e-mail.
View photos of work in progress in the shop here.
View a history of WC&C #1 here.
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