New York railroad looking for funds to put 2-8-0 back in service

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Arcade & Attica Railroad 2-8-0 No. 18 in its current state. The wheels were being removed for bearing box construction which will give its wheels and axles longer lifespans.
Pat Connors
ERIE, Pa. — When steam debuted on the Arcade & Attica Railroad in 1962 it was a big deal. A small New York railroad chose to invest in steam for its excursions while most every other railroad was looking to dieselize. Since then, the Arcade & Attica has been only without steam for only brief periods of time and once again it will be without it for a while unless it gets help to restore its beloved 2-8-0 No. 18.

During the locomotive's last annual inspection, workers noticed that it had broken staybolts in an area around the boiler and cracks near the rivet line. The repair would have required all flues to be changed out to weld the area, since the locomotive was only 10 years into its federal certification.

The railroad recently stripped down No. 18 and sent its boiler to Syracuse, N.Y., for inspection. Other work will be performed at the Arcade, N.Y., shop to bring it up to Federal Railroad Administration standards. Because of the $250,000 price tag, the railroad is doing its best to cover the cost but decided to team up with the Arcade Historical Society to try to raise the funds to get the locomotive running again. Timing is everything because both the Arcade & Attica as well as the local historical society want to see it back for a special date — November 2020 — when the locomotive turns 100.

No. 18 was originally built for a sugar mill in Cuba by Cooke Locomotive Works in Patterson, N.J. After the order was cancelled, it was sold to the Boyne City, Gaylord & Alpena Railroad in Michigan.

Operating as part of the Boyne City Railroad in 1962, the locomotive was long out-of-service when the Arcade & Attica acquired it. It 1962, it worked alongside A&A No. 14 in revenue excursion service for years.

The railroad has relied on its rostered GE centercab switchers for freight and excursion service.

Sister locomotive 4-6-0 No. 14 is still awaiting restoration.

More information is available online.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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