4449 is back in steam

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4449firebox
The hot glow from Southern Pacific No. 4449's firebox helps light the cab of the historic 4-8-4 steam locomotive. It passed its 1,472-day inspection on Tuesday.
Martin E. Hansen
4449steaming
After a throat sheet patch, a complete superheater tube replacement, and a lot elbow grease, Southern Pacific Northern-type No. 4449 is ready for service once again.
Martin E. Hansen
PORTLAND, Ore. — After a rebuild and re-fit that lasted just over 30 months, Southern Pacific GS-4 No. 4449 once more has a fire in her firebox and is building up steam pressure. In this last 1,472-day rebuild, volunteers of the Friends of SP 4449 Inc. worked diligently to keep this steam power symbol alive for another 15 years.

During this re-fit the crews had to do the usual boiler work which also included a tricky throat-sheet patch. Even above that, the crew had to fabricate and replace all the superheater tubes for the big 4-8-4. This was the first time these tubes had been replaced since they were first installed by Lima in May 1941 when No. 4449 was fist built.

Now that she has passed all FRA tests and her appliances are back in place, Tuesday was the chance to put a fire back in her and slowly bring up pressure so she can pull the up-coming Holiday Express trains in Portland, next week.
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