Links to photo galleries of The 4166 Frisco Mikado 1/8 scale live steam locomotive project, The Little Engines Crab 0-4-0 Live Steam locomotive, and other metal workshop related pictures.
Building a Live Steam Locomotive - the Mikado Project
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With the locomotive functionally complete and running, activities turn to the details -- adding in cosmetic items such as air tanks, cab roof, lighting, with more work to come. 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 preperation 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). Note: Most of the pictures in this album are in reverse order, with the newest developments first.
The Freight Elevator Project
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Since I can't carry Locomotives in and out of my no-outside-access basement, one key piece of equipment will be a lifting mechanism I am building. I have fabricated my own freight elevator for the stairwell opening. H. Graham has completed the engineering, provided 16 pages of drawings. Project start: November 2010. I have completed the mechanical fabrication Winter 2011. The power is in, the controls are in and operational. The staircase stand is now finished. Modifications to the lifting stand is complete November 2011. The lifting stand has made a trial lift to the top without issue. December 2011: Fabricated the jumper track for the top of the stairs to bridge the stand to the garagee. First solo lift, load out, load in and lower, December 2011. February 2012: Cover for electrical controls completed. March 2012: First full load trial lift completed, issues found. The tension on the chains was so great the posts shifted against the anchors, introducing excessive chain slack, even with redesigned chain guards. The posts will have to be laterally braced. April 2012 -- horizontal post braces installed. May 2012 -- The first full-load lift of the locomotive resulted in one nut seizing on the screw, jamming the system. July 2012 - Four new nuts and a one replacement screw have been fabricated. August 2012 - the lift is reassembled. September 2012 - Success! Lifted the locomotive and Bill and myself out of the basement without issue.
A small locomotive - 'The Crab' - The first locomotive out of the Neidrauer Shops
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2018: Installed new exhaust pipes because the old steel ones developed leaks.
2011: The modified grease fittings work great! The Crab has some lettering on it (NYC), the riding car is working fine and the new NYC Gondola works well as a two-person passenger car. Time to burn some more coal!
Winter 2011 - The Crab is readied for the summer season. We are experimenting with modified grease fittings as cylinder cocks.
August 2010 - a mild overhaul was completed. Pulled the cab, bunker, boiler and chests, remade the ash pan, eliminated the troublesome axle pumpt, added a new handpump and steam injector. May 2010 - The water pump ram is jamming in the pump bore, causing the wheels to lock up. It will be replaced with an injector. Also the graphite string piston rings will be replaced because they are leaking.
August 2009 - Improvements to the water pump and riding car made.
*** November 2008 It's Done It Runs!! ***
First steam up ever during the Thanksgiving holiday and it ran great! I am so happy!
Other Activities in the Shop
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...Like building a low locomotive stand, fixtures to hold model pipe fittings, tool modifications, a three-phase power converter, New tooling storage.