Houston Railroad Museum, June 19, 2007
What's the story behind this acquisition?
The KCS donated it to the Gulf Coast Chapter NRHS back in 1968. About 15 years ago it was taken out of service for major structural repairs. Aluminum crash posts and side sills were corroded away due to electrolysis. All structure repairs are complete but needs new paint, trucks reassembled and interior refurbishing. Work was being done in San Antonio until the shop there closed so we had to buy a flat car and haul it back to Houston.
What are the plans for this car? Those repairs sound extensive. Almost like it could be useable outside the museum?
The plan is to go riding behind AMTRAK again. We have conduit to pass HEP but are still debating the best way to mount the connectors on the round end so they don't look too weird sticking out where AMTRAK requires them.
What alterations/upgrades, are they requiring for couplers, trucks and brake system?
AMTRAK requires passenger style tight lock couplers, the brakes are up to speck as long as you get them inspected every two years. We had to have some parts fabricated for the trucks as they are no longer available. We had to have an engineer sign off on the parts and then get AMTRAK approval before we could go ahead and have them built.
Will the exterior be original KCS? Am wondering, as when this goes out on the road, would people perceive it as belonging to KCS? Or the museum?
It will be repainted to the KCS livery. We have our own drum head and reporting marks to identify it.