|Because Patrick Benedict McGinnis loves you, too.|
|Traverse at your own peril. We do not comply to OSHA regulations.|
This project will occur in three phases. The first phase will be making the engine ready for steam by getting it mechanically serviceable. This will require fundraising to procure new metal to remake the six broken valve gear parts, repair the ice-damaged dash pot plungers, and obtain a high capacity centrifugal water pump to run cold water through the condenser cooling tubes.
Phase two will entail renting a portable boiler to be brought on-site to perform a steam test, and fundraising enough money to rent this boiler and pay for the fuel-oil it will burn. Once the engine has been tested and the inevitable teething troubles sorted, there will be several days where the engine will be run on steam at governor speed for public viewing. This will also be used to raise awareness and solicit donations for phase three.
Phase three will entail restoration to working order of at least two of the original steam boilers and all associated apparatus including feed water pumps, steam traps, exhaust flue, etcetera. The engine will be painted as well as all other things that require it. It will also include copious weather-proofing restoration of the pump house windows and doors, and re-wiring the original electrical lighting and switchboard systems.
In an era where too many of these large engines are surrounded by museum situations that put more emphasis on touch screens and interactive displays and overpay for architects to make the sites non-functional, we are focusing as strongly as possible on a pragmatic approach where the site is kept original and all apparatus therein is restored in working order and upkept as it would have been in it's working life, so it may be demonstrated operationally with interpretation as much as possible and can speak for itself. We are not seeking awards, any that come incidentally are welcome but the main focus must be the working of the steam engine. Besides being simply deeper and more interesting, inspirations for doing it this way can be found in similar preserved working engine houses throughout England such as Kempton Park Steam Museum, Clay Mills pumping station, The Ellenroad Engine House, Bancroft Mill, The Trencherfield Engine, Abbey pumping station, Mill Meece Pumping station, and several others.
The lead engineers of the project are Alexander Karnes and Philip Beard, who are directing the restoration and repairing the steam engine and related apparatus. All donations should be sent to the New Jersey Transit Heritage Center. (Caretaker of the site.) If you wish to make a donation, please PM or note me for details on the contact information for the NJTHC treasurer, and how to do it.
CURRENT PROJECT WORK STATUS;
Mechanical Richardson six-feed oiler has been removed for service.
Much of the valve gear has been reconnected except for the parts that require service.
HP dash pot plungers and one IP dash pot plunger have been removed for repair. (The remainder still need to be removed.)
Two out of two broken steam arms have been carefully removed.
Overhead crane has been oiled, serviced and is now useable again.
Boiler smokeboxes cleaned out, further cleaning and washing out of boiler barrels with pressure-washer is required..
HP valve gear completely un-stuck and can now be moved by hand.
LP poppet valves unfrozen and moving again.
Engine has been barred over with minimal force.
Oil ports added to all back corliss valve covers so penetrant can be poured in.
Water rams disconnected.
Original works drawings sourced.
June 7th 2017; The 50 horsepower DC motor and its original starting and field rheostat control switchboard have been restored to operation under DC power from a rectifier. The motor can now be demonstrated to visitors.
June 8th 2017; IP dashpot plunger has been moved with hydraulic force, larger pump required to compensate for fluid loss to get it the rest of the way.
A video of the DC motor test run can be found here!