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Steam Soliloquy-Download
DBX-Analog Recorded
Digitally Edited
Digitally Mastered

Scene 1 Number 750, a 4-6-2 was originally operated on the Savannah and Atlanta railroad. She was restored by the Atlanta Chapter of the NRHS. We catch her at a crossing, whistle blowing, and spouting that distinctive, sharp chuff this little Pacific is known for.

Scene 2 Once more we catch #750 at a crossing, this time she is really making time. Sound like the good ole days?

Scene 3 One of the prettiest locos ever built (in our estimation) was the Nickel Plate Berkshire, its lines were smooth, structure sleek, and speed and power well known. Back in the 50ís this loco provided daily duty East and West out of Chicago. The following two scenes give us a glimpse of what was a daily fare for those who lived along this line.

Scene 4 The scene opens as an old pick up truck rambles across the railroad crossing, In the distance we can hear the exhaust blur as the Berk barrels downgrade with almost 80 cars, with a blast of power and speed she flies buy our microphones! See if you can count the cars.

Scene 5 The Tennessee Valley Railway Museum is located near Chattanooga. A 2-8-0 provides the sight and sound of a working steam loco. Here we catch it as it leaves the end of the line, and heads for Chattanooga.

Scene 6 There are quite a number of restored operating steam locos around the country. One of our favorites is located at the Colorado Narrow Gauge Museum In Golden, Colorado. Number 348, a 2-8-0 was built in the late 1800ís, and sports a distinctive bark and whistle. She pulls upgrade around the loop towing some vintage passenger cars.

Scene 7 The NRHS in Duluth Georgia, has been restoring locos for years. They also operate 0-6-0 Porter, ex-Army. and ex- Georgia Power number 97.

Scene 8 Here we follow EBT number 14 around the wye at Orbisonia. The grade is steep here so the little Mike earns itís keep on this part of the line.

Scene 9 Number 611 has been made famous by many videoís available as well as articles in the railroad press. On most fan trips, passengers are let off, the train backs up and then makes a run-by at speed. Here we catch her as she begins her reverse action prior to a run-by.

Scene 10 Back to Colorado and Narrow Gauge! Numbers 484 and 489 are Class K-36 mikados. Both team up on the Cumbres and Toltec in this recording to provide us with a taste of the way it used to be! The train winds up the 4% grade from a standing start, pulling a cut of restored freight cars, and converted for tourist box cars. Listen to that whistle and exhaust echo among the mountains.

Scene 11 Number 750 on the New Georgia Railroad Threads itís way past downtown Atlanta buildings with whistle blowing f or each railroad crossing. A truck decides to park too close to the track and the engineer lets him know he wants him to move NOW! Listen to that sharp bark of the exhaust!

Scene 12 The sounds of a freight working up-grade in a thunder storm are rarely heard, but shouldnít be missed. The cricket serenade is interrupted by the rolling thunder, wind and rain, only to be punctuated by the blasting exhaust of two class K-36 mikes as they wind their way up a 4% grade and through twisting trackage. Then all is silent again except for the endless stereo field of crickets.

Scene 13 Those Nickel Plate Berks work a bit harder up-grade, but arenít bothered by the grades much at all. Here we catch one moving up those grades with a freight heading Westbound to Chicago.

Scene 14 Back at the museum in Duluth Georgia, the 0-6-0 performs another run-by for our stereo microphones, whistle blowing, and side rods clanking!

Scene 15 The scene opens with the sound of crickets, and in the distance we hear a faint whistle and steam chuff. Then all is quiet for a moment, and the quietness is broken by a Mike hard at work upgrade. She picks up speed, and soon is right near us whistle blowing for a local rail crossing. Cars clack over the loose tie plates, and she chuffs off into the distance.

Scene 16 Back at the Colorado Railroad Museum, 2-8-0 number 346 backs up a grade on the museum loop with the brakes partially set (by accident). Listen to the whistle echo among the foot hills. Following on the heels of the train is one of the famous Galloping Geese of Rio Grand Southern fame.

Scene 17 We are back at Duluth, and the 0-6-0 has been fitted with a different whistle. Engineer Richard Dean opens cylinder cocks just enough to start the Porter moving. Listen to that air pump.

Scene 18 On the far side of the loop, the grade Increases somewhat. The engineer blasts the whistle, and shoves the throttle forward! Exhaust bark, flange squeal, whistle and side rod clank are all there, what dynamic sound!

Scene 19 We are back at the East Broad Top. The sound of chirping crickets is disturbed by a Mike and train as a whistle announces her arrival. Trucks clatter over loose tie plates, and the silence comes back once more, only to be Interrupted again by a lonely whistle in the distance.

Scene 20 Once more the EBTís whistle cascades among the Pennsylvania foothills.

Scene 21 In the following scenes listen for the sharp bark, the two-way cab radio and the deep vibration of the entire loco when the brakes are applied. The side rod clank is also much more distinctive in the cab. The firebox door is almost in sync with the chuff of the loco. Air operated doors made the firing of the loco a bit easier, but it was still a lot of work for the fireman.

Scene 22 Number 750 picks up speed, listen to those side rods!

Scene 23 Starting up, number 750 seems to need coal forever! The brakes are applied, and the bell shatters the morning aIr.

Scene 24 We are really flying now! Listen to that exhaust blur, the screaming whistle, and the insatiable appetite for coal!

Scene 25 Few steam locos start easily going up grade, and 750 is no exception. The exhaust bark is almost deafening!

Scene 26 One more time #750 starts up in front of our mics.

Scene 27 A single loco (number 484) pulls a cut of cars by a rail crossing.

Scene 28 484 starts up and passes our vantage point. She is followed by a cut of cars each protesting the tight curve and uneven roadbed.

Scene 29 THE FINALE Picture yourself siting on the porch of a farm house near the railroad on a hot summer night. Crickets are performing the neverending harmony, and a thunderstorm quickly springs up cooling the night air with wind and rain. Then out of the distance we hear the lonely whistle of a passenger train. Distinctive enough to definitely be number 611! She charges past with her seemingly endless string of cars, the thunder and wind roll, and soon all is quiet again. The crickets begin their incessant chirp and we are lulled into a trance once more...
Total time: 57:02:38

Steam Soliloquy-Download

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