March 7, 2005 A day that will live in Infamy  

RailBaron2 54M
684 posts
11/28/2005 6:04 pm

Last Read:
3/5/2006 9:27 pm

March 7, 2005 A day that will live in Infamy

On this day the only remaining water tank still standing on the Southern Pacific narrow gauge was
being worked on to stabilize & straighten it under the Grant,The tub of this tank, errected in 1902 by the S.P. had not had water in it since 1960 & the staves had shrunk & shifted so that the tank tub leaned to the north east some 6" to 8" from plumb,Braceing had been installed by the County,but that only held the tank in round & did not prevent the shifting.
Back in 1997 a engineering assesment was done at a cost of $19,000.00 I freely provided scale drawings of the tank as it appered before 1953.
In the summer of 1953 a rail fan was on the wood roof taking pictures of the train comming into the Yards at Laws. He stepped back & fell through the roof of the tank &He got a unexpected Bath. His camera went over the side & fortunatly was caught by a friend on the ground. After this The S.P. removed the original tounge & groove roof sheathing & replaced it with cheaper plywood & put
sheet metal over the plywood & was how the tank appered from 1953 until March 7 2005.
This Tank was 18' in diam at the base,Tapered being 17'-2" in diam at the top,staves just under 12' long overall. inside the tank was 11'-5" & held 17,000 gallons of water.
The Tank sat on 7 metal legs 2 on the west side 3 in the middle & 2 on the east side. The legs were 7' apart north to south & at angles around the perimiter. The Legs consist of a 2'X 2' X 2' Cube of concrete, on top of this is a 12" X 12" square plate with a circular depression 1/4" deep to recieve the 5" diameter hollow cast leg. at the top
is a 12"X12" cap that has a 1/8" lip that goes into the top of the leg & 2 pins 1" long & 1" diameter that are on top of the cap plate that fit into holes in the 3 Main cross beams. This supports 3" X11" floor joists on 12" centers, on top of the floor Joists is the 2-1/2" thick redwood floor 17'-9" in diameter & the Staves Have a notch cut into them so they are firmly attached to the floor Then metal bands Hold all the staves like a giant barrel.
A cable was attached taround the top of the Tank
& a cable brought down to a come along .The Museum Board Member in charge of this project is 81 years old. The cable was tightened & the staves began to move there was only a couple more inches to go & the Tank tub would be straight & could be properly braced from the inside,Put the roof back on over the Rafters & paint the tank & good as New.Well, the cable broke- & the tank shifted back now with a lean of about 2" more to the north east. Instead of stopping & thinking the situation over- it was- Get a Bigger cable.
A tow truck was brought in & a Heavier cable put around the top of the tank, & connected to the tow truck winch. the winch was started & the slack taken out -so far so good, Then they slowly started to pull-1" then 2", then 3" then 4" then 5" then the staves stopped slideing past each other & bound up as a result of this The entire Tank tub,floor joists & east big beam were pulled toward the tow truck causeing the tub to tilt 1-1/8" causeing the joints held together ONLY by gravity to come apart. The cable was Not perfectly centered & so the whole upper tub twisted about 3" .The North east leg started to go first & I quickly snapped a Picture, unfortuneatly I "Jerked the camera & the image is Blurred,The Next shot I got was a big cloud of dust just as the tank came crashing down. Then aThird after the dust settled. I was NOT the Only one taking photo's of this Historic event- The Local TV station was video tapeing the whole thing.No injuries except The Board Members Pride.Next we inspected the tank & I described for the camera what failed & why,This was on My day off & was down Documenting the tank,because no one else would & I know that information is usefull to not only historians but modle makers.
Now about a hour after the tank fell we had a visitor to the museum come down & seeing the tank Quickly got on his cell phone & called a friend of His in Reno, Nevada . This person in reno put up the first internet post on the fall of the tank.For those wishing to view the posts see SPNG gruops on the cowboy yell. anyway i later posted a responce & told the gruop the facts of what happened- The Truth, the whole truth,plain & simple, a few days latter, The Museum board decided to rebuild the tank- Great! I'm behind you 100% Then I'm told they are going to cut down the diameter & hight of the tank Tub-WRONG- hat part of the Word- RESTORATION do you people have a problem with. This Tank is on the National Registry Of HISTORIC Places- Well I again posted the facts & our Administrator Barbra who was in SanDiego for a Museum convention was given a copy of my posts on the group- again on MY time. She got back sunday & Basicly told me if there was to be any News of this tank SHE would give it.
Now if there had been a museum bullitin immediatly put out explaining the situation & saying- WE NEED HELP to properly restore this tank then there were several people that are in the SPNG group that would have gladly given money to see the job done right.Instead they chose to try to keep things Hush Hush.Now if you have read my profile, & my blogs & responces you know that I live by the Motto- ' "Truth has Nothing To Fear,Nothing To Hide & Nothing To Be Ashamed of."
If you have something to fear, hide or be ashamed of Don't do it in the first place,& 2, take responcibility for you actions. Well They didn't & as a result i lost any respect I had for the Board of the Museum.especially when they called me into the office & I asked them to please be specific, & they would not. Later the board member who was in charge of the tank project told me" Who is going to know or care except the damn railroad entusiasts."- I responded" I Know, & I Care, & I'm NOT the only S.O.B. on the face of this Damn earth who knows & cares about the RAILROAD portion of these yards." He then shot back that another Board Member Who had Refused to answer my question at the earlyier meeting wanted me fired. I told this Board Member "If You want to then YOU GO RIGHT THE FUCK AHEAD" They didn't as I'm still here but I hope you can understand the tension between me & the Museum at this time.
It was due to this that I resigned as a Vollenteer, as a donor, & further benifactor as long as these peiople are here & have that attitude & expect me to be held to a higher standard than they themselves are held to. Someone correct me if I'm wrong ,but those in Positions opf Leadership should lead by example & be held to a higher standard than those under them. i give them thier 6 hours minimum now only which is actually 7-8 hours due to responding to false alarms at night, plus my regular duties.
I'm not going to quit, but I have been taking the precaution of moving Most of my belongings into a storeage unit, so that in the event I have to leave I can do so as quickly as Possible.fortuneatly there is another SPng tank in existance down at the Orange empire railroad museum . the tank once stood at Keeler & with My research notes & measurements at least that tank will be properly restored.


rm_magnet4u22 49F
18406 posts
11/28/2005 8:29 pm

You go Jim. Sometimes you do what you have to do.



I


RailBaron2 54M

11/28/2005 8:40 pm

Thanks Mag,what you see is me venting,If Krackatoa Jim does explode, The sound will be heard around the world.As it is the venting of this volcano is being read around the world.


rm_luke69iner 48M
3275 posts
11/30/2005 12:17 am

Hope things work out for you Jim


S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
A persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
Questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma perciocche giammai di questo fondo
Non torno vivo alcun, s'i'odo il vero,
Senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo
.
~Dante~


rm_luke69iner 48M
3275 posts
11/30/2005 12:17 am

LOL The limp penis's are a little distracting


S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
A persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
Questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma perciocche giammai di questo fondo
Non torno vivo alcun, s'i'odo il vero,
Senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo
.
~Dante~


RailBaron2 54M

11/30/2005 7:24 am

Hi Luke,Haven't seen you on my blog in a few days, was about to send serch & rescue out looking for you.Your second comment has gone right over my head-"The limp penis's are a little distracting" ???????
Its coffee time.I need to wake up before I read posts I think.


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