Monday, May 1, 2023

Steam locomotive 1246 returns home!

The 1246 has arrived!

1246 on a truck in Snoqualmie

In the last TrainMuseum blog post, details of the locomotive and its acquisition were revealed. Now it has arrived in Snoqualmie, returning to the Puget Sound region after an absence of more than 40 years!

Is this locomotive smiling?  The front smokebox door appears to have a smiley face.
The Great Northern Railway 1246 is popularly known as the Woodland Park Zoo steam locomotive.  Displayed near the south entry to the park from 1953 until 1980, this Baldwin built Consolidation locomotive thrilled thousands of children of all ages.

The 1246's boiler is picked up by a pair of cranes and set on a truck.
On Tuesday, April 25, the 1246 was bifurcated - the locomotive boiler was removed from the steam engine and drivers - and each was set on a heavy haul truck.

Carefull rigging on the 1246
As heavy and robust as a locomotive may be, it must be handled with care or else critical components could be damaged.  The boiler was carefully rigged to prevent damage.

Campanoli Crane unloaded the 1246 and reunited the boiler and frame.
The 1246 is a freight locomotive and it is heavy - more than 130 tons when paired and operating with a tender.  Local crane company Imhoff recently sold to Campanoli Crane but the 1246 move allowed their large conventional crane to return to Snoqualmie for a few days.

Steven Butler from Morton Locomotive and Machine Works coordinated the move.
Steven Butler from Morton Locomotive and Machine Works coordinated the move from Merrill, Ore to Snoqualmie, and the entire move went off without a hitch.

The boiler and the steam engine with frame and drivers were reunited in Snoqualmie.
Please consider a contribution to the Northwest Railway Museum to help offset the more than $88,000 cost of repatriating this amazing artifact.

The 1246 loading crew