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Mildly OT, nice article on the Big Boy 4-8-8-4s

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  • Mildly OT, nice article on the Big Boy 4-8-8-4s

    Bill Pierce over at Old Machine Press has a nice article on the UP's Big Boy over on his site. I will edit in the link
    https://oldmachinepress.com/2016/12/...oy-locomotive/
    My Nook HD won't let me jump betwee tabs to copy and paste. His site has a number of interesting articles on different engine, aircraft, auto and rail projects. What I find awesome is the skills of the Pattern Makers, Tool Makers and Machinists needed to bring these dreams to fruition even they were not ultimately successful
    Last edited by Spin Doctor; 12-25-2016, 04:44 PM.
    Forty plus years and I still have ten toes, ten fingers and both eyes. I must be doing something right.

  • #2
    We have one of those in my town. I had an opportunity to work on the restoration but I was already involved in too many other projects at the time. I have often considered making a brass model of it though. Maybe someday.

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    • #3
      A long since passed friend used to have some pictures from the ALCO plant in Dunkirk NY. There were many of those big locomotives in various stages of construction. I recall that one shop had over 20 locomotives in various stages of construction at one time.

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      • #4
        What does the leading truck do?

        Dennis

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        • #5
          Originally posted by mixdenny View Post
          What does the leading truck do?

          Dennis
          Leads the engine around corners. They often have heart shaped swing links. Haven't seen the drawing of the BigBoy, but would expect the same.


          Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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          • #6
            Originally posted by RB211 View Post
            Leads the engine around corners. They often have heart shaped swing links. Haven't seen the drawing of the BigBoy, but would expect the same.


            Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
            Really nice pictures, I love old trains, what a work of art. I'm not old enough to remember seeing any of them in service.
            One time a guy at a local model RR club told me that the lead wheel group and rear wheel group aided in getting the engine rolling. I've heard the term booster used before. I often wondered if he knew what he was talking about because there was no drive linkage visible. I always thought they were for support or to help carry the weight of the engine.
            I also remember hearing that some of the tenders had boosters also.

            JL.................
            Last edited by JoeLee; 12-26-2016, 12:31 AM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by JoeLee View Post
              Really nice pictures, I love old trains, what a work of art. I'm not old enough to remember seeing any of them in service.
              One time a guy at a local model RR club told me that the lead wheel group and rear wheel group aided in getting the engine rolling. I've heard the term booster used before. I often wondered if he knew what he was talking about because there was no drive linkage visible. I always thought they were for support or to help carry the weight of the engine.
              I also remember hearing that some of the tenders had boosters also.

              JL.................
              I've never seen a leading truck bolster, but rear truck bolsters did exist, very few and far between. Rear truck helps support the weight of the firebox on super powers


              Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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              • #8
                nice read. thanks for sharing.

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                • #9
                  I believe that engine was articulated. Too long for normal curves. I remember the engine and tender came in over a million pounds

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                  • #10
                    I've never seen one, the largest steam engine*I ever saw was the 6218 at Fort Erie in Canada, back in 86. Still there now according to Google Earth.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by mixdenny View Post
                      What does the leading truck do?

                      Dennis
                      As RB211 said, the leading truck helps guide the engine around curves. The truck does not swing or pivot freely. As it enters a curve, the linkage causes the truck to raise the main engine frame slightly. This resistance to free swiveling plus the added weight on the truck then helps pull the engine into the curve.

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                      • #12
                        Nice read. Thanks.

                        I did see one of them up close some decades ago. They are real monster, brutes. You gotta love them.
                        Paul A.

                        Make it fit.
                        You can't win and there is a penalty for trying!

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                        • #13
                          I would really like to see one of the Big Boys in person some day. I have worked on the Pere Marquette 1225 (a 2-8-4 Berkshire) back in the early '80's. That train is finally restored and makes runs through mid Michigan. It was also the inspiration for the book "Polar Express" (note the 1225 number).

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Mister ED View Post
                            I would really like to see one of the Big Boys in person some day.
                            The California Rail Museum in Sacramento has a cab forward 4-8-8-2 on display that is the last of a fleet operated by southern pacific.
                            Just a little smaller than the Big Boy but still very impressive. Oil fired if I remember correctly.
                            Worth the price of admission if you are ever in the area.

                            Steve

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                            • #15
                              There is one on display at the Museum of Transport in St.Louis, Mo.
                              Union Pacific #4006 ALCO/1941 S Big Boy Largest successful steam locomotive 4-8-8-4
                              C

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