In an effort to preserve C. A. & E. #309 despite fire damage, Connie Morrell has given the north side of the car a vitally needed scraping and priming. C. N. S. & M #749 has received a tar paper roof to head off further water damage to the car. Since it is not actually in the process of restoration and, like all IRM equipment at this point, is stored outside, the new roof will preserve the condition of the car until it can undergo proper rebuilding.
CRT 1268 has received an interior clean-up and exterior finish paint job by Ray Neuhaus, Howard Weege, and his son Donald. This was done in time for Schwabenfest so that the increase in riders during the festival could be adequately handled.
After the disasterous interior fire on the C. A. & E. 309, the Operating Department decided that the only alternative for a 2-car interurban train that could be operative within a short period of time was the combination of the C. N. S. & M 160 and 714. Conservative estimates were that the project would be completed by late October. It was decided at a board meeting that these cars would be a priority project in order to have them done, by Schwabenfest, and work was begun in spring and continued through summer. The 160 was built by J. G. Brill in 1915 and was in the oldest class of steel cars that the North Shore Line had when it quit operations. The 160 was one of the few cars in the series to have electric heat installed, and one of the cars in the fleet with its original interior unchanged by the North Shore's interior modernization program. Exterior work completed on the 160 includes the complete repainting and lettering of the car in the pre-war two-tone green, grey roof and red trim color scheme. Electrical work on the 160 was spearheaded by Bob Konsbruck with help from Ray Bowlan and Norm Krentel. On the master controllers, the fellows cleaned and recontoured the main drums and the fingers. The handles, operating mechanisms, and bearings were cleaned and lubricated and all insulating surfaces were cleaned. The controller covers were then straightened, primed, and painted.
The line switch and switch group received extensive reworking such as weatherstripping and painting all covers, cleaning and recontouring or replacing all contacts and interlock fingers and lubrication of contacts, interlocks, assemblies, and motor cut-out blade clips. Also, defective arc chutes were replaced, cover interiors repainted, and cables rewired or re-insulated. The car was then meggered at 1,000 V.D.C. and checked out for operation from both ends and from car 714 via #1 end trainline.
The 714 was, built in 1926 by Cincinnati Car Co. and was a shore line car until 1954 91fen it went into Waukegan trip per service. The interior of the car was modernized in 1940 by removing the toilet, lowering the ceiling, painting the woodwork, and installing bullseye lighting with stainless steel and chrome fixtures. For Schwabenfest, the car was repainted in the latest color scheme of green and red with a dark grey roof. The interior was completely repainted and cleaned. New roof saddles were made at the high school woodshop; however, owing to the shortage of time, it was decided not to install them at the present time and use the 714 as a control trailer. Many thanks to Ray Bowlan, Jeff Brady, Dan Gorenstein, Phil Hehn, Jim Johnson, Nick Kallas, Bob Konsbruck, Norm Krentel, Bob Kutella, Jerry Lynn, Bill McGregor, John McKelvey, Mark Secco, Dave Shore, Frank Sirinek, Dennis Storzak, and many others who put countless hours into the 160 & 714 project. The Illinois Terminal 415 had some roof patches done and window blanks installed in the motorman's side windows while new ones were being made, using the old ones for patterns.
Work on the Illinois Terminal 518 is now at the point where some attention is being given to the little things that take time. Grab irons were installed in the roof, new emergency cord and 2 baggage racks were installed. The backup trolley pole and retriever were mounted and the lightening arrester and fuse box were installed. The stove panel was redone and is now ready for the stove plumbing to be hooked up. The I. T. 233 had some roof patching done as well as some windows caulked in order to get the car as weatherproof as possible. The I. T. 277 has had two MS switches rebuilt with two more left to go. The conductor electro pneumatic signal system was made operational, but some components are needed in order to make the 518's operational. Anybody got any?
Jeff Brady continued the progress on C. N. S. & M 354 with the completion of the installation of new air brake piping replacing 95% of the old pipe underneath the car. Work included rebuilding magnet valves, setting the governor, checking for leaks (several were found) and inspecting the air compressor for commutator arcing, knocks, and leaks. It was found that unfortunately, the compressor will need considerable repairs. The project of replacing 120 pins and bushings in the brake rigging was initiated with the installation of five new bushing. Since the meager beginning took eight hours, a new method of installation is being sought. Other projects carried out concurrently were the fabrication of roof mats, scraping and painting of roof vents, and priming of new heater covers. With the coming of cold weather, more effort will be expended on interior repairs.
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