The guys in the barn have been hard at work the last few weeks getting 754 ready for her debut. She’s scheduled to leave the barn by late August and so far she’s on track. Our native electrician Don James and his apprentices have been busy under the car running the wires and hooking up the electrical components, while the Tony Powell and Dean Andrews, our shop supers, have been working on the mechanical aspects of the car. The new brake systems for 754 are now in place and hooked up to each truck. This is a departure from the norm for us as all other brake systems on our cars use a set of rods under the car that operate off of a single air cylinder.
The new system utilizes two air cylinders on either side of each truck to actuate the brake pads at the wheel. This allows for better stopping with a higher amount of pressure being applied by each cylinder compared to one big cylinder under the center of the car. In layman’s terms that means she’ll stop on a dime and give you nine cents change.
While that’s been going on, our Chief Operating Officer John Landrum has been busy installing the controls themselves. Although the new controller system is quite small as you can see in the picture, the rheostat module is mounted on the inside of a controller case, allowing 754 to maintain her 1927 appearance on the inside. Her brake controls on the other hand will utilize the same equipment as the rest of our fleet.
As you can see, Betty is progressing nicely. Keep an eye on this blog for further updates and news of Betty’s debut.