By Jeff Taylor, Assistant Curator of Equipment and Rolling Stock, Colorado Railroad Museum
Work continues here at the museum on Uintah combine 50. As of this past week we have re-hung the sliding doors as well as the front door on the baggage end of the car. It may seem insignificant but this is a small milestone for us, with the doors now functional for the first time in over 60 years we are just about finished with the baggage end of this car. Very soon we will begin working on the passenger end of the interior. We have a local woodworking company building replicas of the isle side of the original wood seat frames.
At the other end of the car major surgery was done to the rear platform. We removed a section of the center sills and all the rotted wood center sill extensions to weld in heavy wall steel tubing to the steel sills the Uintah added to the car. Below this we welded in our attachments for the coupler. This allows for a very strong platform and enables us to move the coupler mount further under the car. The Uintah had the coupler hanging under the platform. We will start mounting the coupler next week.
As I have posted here before the next coach to be restored will be D&RG coach 307. We have scheduled a crane company to help us lift and set 307 on shop trucks so she can be brought to the shop. In addition to lifting 307 we will also be lifting D&RGW baggage car 168 at the same time. This is scheduled to happen hopefully in the next few weeks. As part of gearing up for 307s restoration we have been taking inventory of parts we need and parts we have. But most importantly I am proud to say we have made a trade with the Durango & Silverton for the last remaining pair of Jackson & Sharp 4′-4″ wheel base trucks. We are very pleased to acquire these trucks and we are very thankful to the D&S and the Harper family for making this trade possible. With these trucks we will be better equipped to restore 307 to a pre WWI livery.