Illinois Railway Museum

New Power for the Zephyr Power Car -- Getting Everything Ready
Illinois Railway Museum Volunteer Patch

Our Volunteers in Action

It takes a lot of work, time, energy, elbow grease, dedication, and determination to keep our Museum in Motion. We've assembled these photo essays, to share with you some of these activities. [Please be patient while the graphics load; we hope you'll find their detail worth any delay.]

The Nebraska Zephyr obtains its motive power from the Siver Pilot EMC E-5 diesel locomotive (CB&Q 9911A), and power for passenger lights, air conditioning, and the diner from three smaller Cummins diesel engines, each with an attached 240 volt three-phase generator. These engines are located in the front compartment of the Power Car Venus (CB&Q 960) which is the first car of the train set.

Two of the three generators are needed to comfortably power the train, however years of service have taken their toll, and only the #1 engine remained operational. The two tired engines needed to be removed from Venus and sent to a diesel engine shop for rebuilding. To accomplish this task, Jim Jones scheduled their removal for a Monday in February, when a number of members of the Diesel Shop were able to arrange their schedule to participate.


(photo above) Getting ready to pull the Nebraska Zephyr out of Barn 9 (Track 91). The train had been wyed (turned around) the day before, hence you see the tail end of the observation car Juno.

The 45-ton switcher USA (United States Army) 8537 sits, ready to pull out the train set. (left to right) Wes Lloyd, Harold Driscoll, Dave Schroder, Jamie Kolanowski, and Jim Jones discuss a few details.


(photo above) View from the cab of USA 8537, as Doug Geren is ready to pull the Nebraska Zephyr out of Barn 9, the longest barn on the property.

The Zephyr diesel locomotive Silver Pilot has been uncoupled, and the switch engine will pull the train set out of the barn, The Power Car Venus will soon be moved by the road crossing to the Steam Service area, one of the few convenient areas on the property without overhead wires.

(photo to left) The good news from Jim Jones (on roof) is that the eye bolts remain in place, with everything intact and ready to go. (On the ground, left to right) Matt Rumpfeldt, Harold Driscoll, Dave Schroder, and Dave Dote.

(photo to right) When Jim Jones began organizing this project weeks previously he could only dream of such delightful weather in February. (On the ground, left to right) Dave Schroder, Wes Lloyd, Harold Driscoll, Martin Kocanda, Matt Rumpfeldt, Jamie Kolanowski, and Dave Dote.

Behind them diesel locomotives BN-1 (EMD F9-A) and BN-2 (EMD F9-B) sit on the trolley loop beside Barn 9, having been moved out of the way for the day.


(photo above) Inside Venus Matt Rumpfeldt, Dave Dote, and Jim Jones begin to disconnect the #3 Cummins engine. Over the past week, the electrical cables had been disconnected, and most of the mounting bolts lostened.

When the roof covers are removed, the generator and engine will remain attached as the 4,500 pound unit is raised, rotated, and lifted through the roof opening.

(photo to right) Getting ready to pull off the roof covers which provide access to the engines and generators of Venus, CB&Q 960, the Power Car of the Nebraska Zephyr. Jim Jones (on roof), Max Tyms (at the controls of the crane), while Jamie Kolanowski and Wes Lloyd are ready to guide them to the ground.

His years of experience with heavy electrial work for the Museum will soon prove extremely valuable, when he will gently hoist the two engine and generator units up and out through the roof of the Power Car.

(photo to right) Jim Jones and Jamie Kolanowski attach the chains to the eye hooks of one of the two roof covers.

When the two covers have been removed, the #3 Cummins engine and generator will be hoisted out through the roof, followed later by the #2.

Photographs by our IRM Photo Team, using a Sony MVC-FD7 Mavica digital camera, text by Harold A. Driscoll.

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Ticket Number: 6727
Last Modified: 05/17/2005 10:56:16 PM
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