Fort Wayne society to restore SD9 to operating condition

RELATED TOPICS: MIDWEST | STEAM/PRESERVATION | LOCOMOTIVES
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SD9
Chris Lantz stands on the short hood end of former Norfolk Southern Nickle Plate Road SD9 No. 358.
Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society
FORT WAYNE, Ind. - Steel Dynamics, Inc. has donated $3,000 to the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society Inc. for Project 358, an effort to restore the society's 1950s diesel locomotive, Nickel Plate Road No. 358. The funds will be allocated toward electrical cable, paint, generators or other locomotive parts in need of refurbishment.

One of the country's largest producers of continuous welded rail, Steel Dynamics has previously helped underwrite the Society’s feasibility studies for its planned Headwaters Junction project.

“Project 358 is grateful for SDI’s support. We have a small but dedicated team of volunteers that is slowly bringing this historic locomotive back to life and contributions like this go a long way,” said Chris Lantz, Project Manager. “We are continuing to solicit private and corporate donations and welcome new volunteers to move the project forward.”

Built in 1957, the SD9 type locomotive helped replace and retire the Nickel Plate Road’s steam locomotive fleet, including the Society’s own 1940s steam locomotive No. 765. In 2011, it was donated to the society by Norfolk Southern.

Once restored to operating condition, the 358 will provide additional motive power for events and excursions and create a striking, interactive mobile historical display.

The estimated total cost for the restoration is approximately $35,000.

“If all the parts and materials were available today, the locomotive would be operational, legally compliant and cosmetically restored in eight weeks,” explained Lantz.

No. 358 will be on display at the Society’s upcoming Open House Aug. 18 to 20.

Interested volunteers or donors can contact Chris Lantz at lantz@fwrhs.org for more information.

Volunteer sessions are held nearly every weekend.

More information is available online.

— A Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society news release. July 27, 2017

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