Building a Live Steam Locomotive - the Mikado Project
Working just four hours a week starting in 2003, master machinist Bill W. came over to my home workshop and together we built this locomotive finishing major construction in 2012. This site started as a build log, now with the locomotive functionally complete and running, is more photo gallery of activities. After major construction, activities turn to the details -- adding in cosmetic items such as air tanks, cab roof, lighting, etc. September 2021 - Boiler failure! Discovered during fire-up, a pin hole in the engineers sidesheet above the mudring ended operations and the start of teardown / firebox replacement. August 2014 - With the locomotive not in the shop for the summer, it is very hard to work on it. We have shifted to Summer running and Winter shop work, making updates to this site even more sporadic. October 2013 - The successful fall running season is over with the annual "Boiler Blowdown" last run. Time to put the loco back in the shop for the winter, and to finish the tender for next spring. September 2013 - work shifts from the tender back to the engine & jacketing in preparation for the fall train meets. June 2013 - we continue to work on the Tender and Tender Trucks. September 2012 First fire-up! The engine has made it out of the basement, a fire light and steam was raised! See folder "Operations" for details. Construction photos of a 1.6" scale, 7.5" gage live steam USRA Heavy Mikado locomotive, wheel arrangement 2-8-2. Under construction in my basement under the expert tutelage of Bill W., retired master machinist. I have chosen the home road for this locomotive, it is a Frisco 4100-series engine, number 4166 (a 'ghost' engine, the 4100 series stopped after 4164).