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    • August 30, 2019 1:53 AM EDT
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      The video features the borax mining town of Trona, CA in the Searles Valley. Includes aerial views plus a few shots of damage from the earthquakes that struck Ridgecrest and Trona in July 2019.

       

      This is the first in a series of videos from my 2019 trip, where I explored old mines, mining camps, ghost towns and other historic sites in Nevada and the Mojave desert. 

       

      Music:

      “Nostalgia Piano” by AudioBall

      Licensed by AudioJungle

      https://audiojungle.net/item/the-sentimental-story/22632401

       

    • August 28, 2019 7:02 AM EDT
    • 28 August, 2019 - Metamora, Michigan on Bill Hays' Michigan Central Railroad.  Arrived yesterday afternoon for the Labor Day Weekend Ops.

      This is the big event of the year on the Michigan Central and many people from all over the eastern USA are already here.  By Saturday there are 57 operators, registered to attend and 65 people overall for this 1.5 inch event.  Next couple of days is for everyone to get equipment unloaded and do some minor upgrades or maintenance on the railroad.  Bill wants me to help him with some upgrades to the car float and approach apron.  Should be fun.

      .

      https://www.facebook.com/pages/Michigan-Central-Railroad/704369886301407

       

       

    • August 21, 2019 7:04 AM EDT
    • Mark,

      The Long Island H-10 is owned by Bob Wattecamp and Jan and I are the part time crew.  The H-10 is 3 years old and I've been fortunate enough to be involved with it, since it was delivered in Florida.  Great engine to operate and just now really getting broke in.  It will be a good runner long after we are.

      Wayne Godshall's Shop builds these along with many other units and they are becoming a standard of the industry.

      http://www.godshallscustommachining.com/

       

    • August 13, 2019 2:28 PM EDT
    • Ric Golding said:

      My learning experience this time was to use the "Johnson Bar" in reverse to slow the engine, when I didn't have enough steam pressure to stop us coming down the hill through the tunnel.  A real pucker factor, while living the dream.

       

       That hill was not originally supposed to have such a steep grade.  Dick McCloy (the founder, owner, designer, "dicktator", and all around fantastic human being....for those not familiar with Mill Creek Central Railroad) worked for three years trying to take the tunnel elevation down eight more inches to lessen that grade but the solid rock would not budge.  It does make for a challenging descent, especially with the grade crossing and main yard immediately at the bottom.  But that's part of the character of Mill Creek.  It forces the engineer to think way ahead and prepare his train for the upcoming (or downcoming) track circumstances.   Kinda like a real railroad. 

        By the time I figured out that maybe it was you chugging by I didn't have much opportunity to study the H-10 or your crew.  It sounds like you have an awesome train and crew.  It was fun watching you and so many others out there living the dream.  It really is a great family activity where everyone can participate. 

       

    • August 13, 2019 8:16 AM EDT
    • Ken Brunt said:

      I'm surprised you remember how to get home......................

      A good GPS.

      .

      AndyC said - "Welcome home.... Since you are home and had that rain, could you please send some down here??"

      You didn't get the rain.  Did it again at 3 this morning and raining now.  I think Lake is going to jump up.

      .

      Rooster said - "Ric has a home?  If this is true why has it not been donated to someone that needs one?"

      Yes, the Duplex is for when we can't do this traveling anymore.  The Son keeps asking me how I'm doing.  I think he's got other ideas for the Truck when we can't use it as much.  Life - its what's happening while you plan your future.  GOD just laughs.

       

    • August 13, 2019 8:15 AM EDT
    • MARK - Truly the pleasure was mine.  I really appreciate the time you took to introduce yourself.  I tried so hard to remember your name, but, at least, I got the "M" right.  The Long Island H-10 is owned by Bob Wattecamp and he has a picture of him in the prototype 113, when he was little.  The engineer, at the time, was a friend of Bob's Dad. The engine is a lot for both of us to run, so we take turns one run at the helm and one run in the jump seat.  Jan usually conducts and protects the back of the train.  Bob's 75 and I'm almost 71 and he has been so generous over the last 3 years to let me share his fun.  We both learn so much every time we run it.  Wayne Godshalls H-10's are really quite the engine.

      .

      http://www.godshallscustommachining.com/

      .

      My learning experience this time was to use the "Johnson Bar" in reverse to slow the engine, when I didn't have enough steam pressure to stop us coming down the hill through the tunnel.  A real pucker factor, while living the dream.

       

    • August 12, 2019 9:33 PM EDT
    • Ric Golding said:

      Someone "Mike?" came up to me at the Mill Creek Railroad.  We introduced ourselves and shared a moment, but the weekend is a blurr of fun.

       

      That would be me, Ric.  I was trying to "track" you down all weekend but you were literally a blurr, steaming around the over five miles of track at Mill Creek Central.  When I finally caught you off your steed and packing up I figured that I had better say hi before you took off on the next leg of your and Jan's great adventure. 

      It sure looked to me like you've mastered that awesome Wayne Godshall H-10.  Your "blurr of fun" was fun for all to watch. 

      It was good to meet you in person, although it was brief.  Happy steaming!......Mark "Mike" Betlem

       

    • August 27, 2019 10:46 PM EDT
    • Some shots from last weeks trip.

       

      Up in the clouds picking huckleberries.

       

      Looking down on the Coeur d' Alene River and the Chain Lakes.

       

       

      On Twin Crags,  5,500 ft

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

    • August 21, 2019 4:27 PM EDT
    • But, it was at a "give away price" I just couldn't pass it up.

    • August 21, 2019 8:40 AM EDT
    • David Maynard said:
      Devon Sinsley said:

      Honey,

      I need a $10,000 metal lathe so I can build a $100 sander. Wonder how that would work out.

      You don't know how this game is played.

      You never mention the actual price.

      When asked, and only if/when asked, you list a bunch of projects you could do with the tool, even though you know you will never get around to doing half of them.

      You can also explain that you aren't wasting money like (someone she sort of knows) by going out drinking, partying, wasting money on a broken down old boat, or car, or whatever frivolous thing that person does. Also, while that person will still have a broken down whatever when he is done throwing money at it, you will have a tool that will retain its resale value.

      Then there is the savings in that you could make such and such instead of buying such and such.

      We need something new  she is getting tired of hearing this each time we need and engine,car etc...

       

    • August 20, 2019 7:07 PM EDT
    • Devon Sinsley said:

      Honey,

       

      I need a $10,000 metal lathe so I can build a $100 sander. Wonder how that would work out.

      You don't know how this game is played.

      You never mention the actual price.

      When asked, and only if/when asked, you list a bunch of projects you could do with the tool, even though you know you will never get around to doing half of them.

      You can also explain that you aren't wasting money like (someone she sort of knows) by going out drinking, partying, wasting money on a broken down old boat, or car, or whatever frivolous thing that person does. Also, while that person will still have a broken down whatever when he is done throwing money at it, you will have a tool that will retain its resale value.

      Then there is the savings in that you could make such and such instead of buying such and such.

       

      Yea, I have slept on the couch before.

    • August 20, 2019 6:07 PM EDT
    • Devon Sinsley said:
      And I heard blah blah blah then

      ”  In the end, I would probably just have hole in my head and a chewed rear end, no lathe and no sander

       

      That pretty much sums it up 

    • August 20, 2019 4:17 PM EDT
    • And I heard blah blah blah then

      ”  In the end, I would probably just have hole in my head and a chewed rear end, no lathe and no sander

       

    • August 20, 2019 3:18 PM EDT
    • Devon Sinsley said:

      Honey,

       

      I need a $10,000 metal lathe so I can build a $100 sander. Wonder how that would work out.

      It’s all in how you phrase the question and the value you put on your tools. I would ask this way:

       

      ”Woman, I’m buying a $10,000 metal lathe because that’s what I want and I don’t want any lip from you!” ...... that’s what I would think,  but she would hear:

      ”My dear beautiful and loving wife, may I please buy a very expensive metal lathe so that I might build drum sander and in doing so save multiple thousands of dollars on the sander?”  She would then say, “well, why wouldn’t you just buy the sander instead of spending all that money on the lathe and then still have to build the sander?”  To which I would reply, “Honey that’s why I married you, you are so smart.  Consider it done.”

       

      Now I got the sander and didn’t have to build it. 

       

      That at all sounds good, doesn’t it?  In the end, I would probably just have hole in my head and a chewed rear end, no lathe and no sander

    • August 20, 2019 11:14 AM EDT
    • You'd be asking for ANOTHER hole in your head!

    • August 20, 2019 9:45 AM EDT
    • Honey,

       

      I need a $10,000 metal lathe so I can build a $100 sander. Wonder how that would work out.

    • August 19, 2019 8:47 PM EDT
    • Sanding ..... are you sure that stuff draining from your skull is not actually your brain??  Think ..... prime opportunity to get that metal lathe you've been wanting but just didn't have an excuse!!  Excuse now provided  That green C900 may be poopy force main pipe, hopefully unused 

    • August 19, 2019 7:02 PM EDT
    • Dan Hilyer said:

      C900????  What's wrong with good ol' DI? 

       

      I'm certainly following this build with great interest, Devon.  Looks good so far, carry on!!

      I don't have the patience that would be required to sand down ductile iron to make it true lol. Not to mention it would be a bit heavy. I am surprised you didn't ask why a tare district has green C-900 instead of blue or white. I have no idea where we got this stuff. Looks like poopy pipe.

    • August 19, 2019 6:46 PM EDT
    • C900????  What's wrong with good ol' DI? 

       

      I'm certainly following this build with great interest, Devon.  Looks good so far, carry on!!

    • August 19, 2019 3:20 PM EDT
    • I decided that a 3" drum was too small. I wanted closer to a 5" drum. Working for a water district I have access to pipe. The PVC water pipe most commonly used out int he road is what is called C900 it is a much thicker wall than traditional PVC. As such it has a large diameter for its nominal size. 4" C900 has a diameter of just shy of 5". And with the thick wall will allow me to take a fair amount of material off if need be to get it true to the shaft/table. So I cut a piece of scrap pipe 24" long. made two 3/4" plywood disks to fit in either end. I cut them large and spun them on my lathe and sanded them to the right diameter. I made them fit nice and snug then screwed them in from the outside of the drum. I put it on the shaft and put the bearings on and surprisingly it sits very close to true as it is. It won't require the removal of much material to make it perfect. I should end up with a drum about 4 3/4" in diameter. This give me a much faster surface speed per minute for the same RPMs. What this means is that I will sand faster but at the same RPM because there is more linear inches of sand paper on a larger drum. It causes the surface to be sanded quicker and thereby spending less time in contact withe drum and a longer piece of sand paper so it won't heat up as fast. So here is the start of my drum. It will need some collars on each end that will be glued and screwed to the ends and then have set screws to tighten it onto the shaft. Once that is done it will be bolted back into place and then I will fire it up and use a block of wood with sand paper on it to true the drum to the shaft and table so that it sands uniform and smooth. Actually next is to make the motor mount.