der. A 1,472-day inspection requires a much more substantial facility than that and brings me to our new “luxury” engine house. This is not a new concept for us. We have already constructed such a building, only to have its location become a detriment and we sold it. While the dimensions will not be quite the same, our new structure will be rather similar in that it can house four coaches on two interior tracks with room for shop functions and storage. The idea of it being “luxury” comes in having electricity without listening to a generator, water without trucking it in, sewerage without a porta-privy (or the nearest bush) and heat without someone stoking a wood stove. Where it will be better than the old building will be a concrete floor and a pit and both of these are vital to the heavy inspection that will be required when 142 is retired for We entered 2017 as a year of great expectation but, as is the custom, accomplishment didn’t keep up to the expectation, at least, not in how long it took, trying the patience of all involved. Winter was quite mild and the regular maintenance on 142 went smoothly enough, until one of the arch tubes was found to be leaking during the annual inspection. The problem here is that we wanted to hold off a replacement of this nature until the next annual inspection. The arch tube was replaced and the engine spent one entire weekend in service before a second arch tube leaked and had to be likewise replaced. In September, the engine reached the end of cycle known as a fifteen-year or a 1,472 (operating day) inspection. This was, of course, a major inconvenience of a date as our operating season extended until October 29th, and a waiver had to be requested from the F.R.A. to postpone the inspection date. This all focuses on the major priority of the Society for 2017. Up until now, maintenance work on 142 has been in what I’ve described as an overgrown tent – a canvas covered Quonset hut, about one foot longer than the engine and its tenDylan Vieytes working on the societies office in downtown Phillipsburg. Keith Cadigan and CMO Matthews discuss work on steam locomotive #142 in our current “tent” shop.. 18 2017. Obviously, this will facilitate all the other work that gets put off far too often. For example, while plans are not finalized for the layout, one coach bay would be more or less dedicated to a paint shop. Painting is not practical in winter and the coaches get used all summer; a tough combination even without considering the dust flying all about the old location. Once it was decided where the new shop would go, it was a matter of obtaining the property, which was to be donated to us. The problem arose in the owner having to get approval for a new site plan to include sub-dividing the property for us and that was delayed to the point of severe angst, to say the least. In a classic case of worth-the -wait, its location is so convenient, it brings radical change to the operational routine on the railroad. On another real estate front, two major events, Thomas and Polar, are heavy merchandising situations, as well as requiring a great

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