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Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Cox_ba12




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Post  Kim Sat Aug 28, 2021 8:47 pm

My younger brother, Keith, is "The Train Guy" in our family, though I also have a fondness for them, having grown up in a small town that was evenly split by a set of rails.  While growing up, our lives were regularly punctuated by the horns of freight trains passing through the middle of town.

Occasionally, they'd park short of the downtown crossing, with the engineer and brakeman walking over to the general store, where my Aunt Bert would make them lunch sandwiches.  These guys rated right up there with pilots as far as I was concerned.

So, when Keith told me that Union Pacific's monstrous "Big Boy" steam locomotive would be passing through our turf, I figured to send my little drone on a mission.

This from my Facebook Page:
-------------------------------------------------

The Big Boy 2021 Tour.

My first attempt at Train-Chasing with the Mavic Drone.

There was a bunch of us, waiting at a crossing north of McClure, Illinois for Union Pacific's "Big Boy" 4014 giant locomotive.  With a couple train guys tracking the Big Boy with scanners, I thought I'd get a good bit of notice, and let down my guard.

Someone suddenly yelled, "There it is!", and I had to scramble to get the video camera started and the Mavic launched.

My apologies in advance for the bad audio.  Big Boy's whistle over-powered my camera's microphone so, there's some distortion (to say the least!).

From UP's Info Page:
---------------------------------------------
"Twenty-five Big Boys were built exclusively for Union Pacific Railroad, the first of which was delivered in 1941.
The locomotives were 132 feet long and weighed 1.2 million pounds. Because of their great length, the frames of the Big Boys were "hinged," or articulated, to allow them to negotiate curves.

They had a 4-8-8-4 wheel arrangement, which meant they had four wheels on the leading set of "pilot" wheels which guided the engine, eight drivers, another set of eight drivers, and four wheels following which supported the rear of the locomotive.
The massive engines normally operated between Ogden, Utah, and Cheyenne, Wyo."

It can be tracked here:
https://www.up.com/forms/steam-trace.cfm

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! 50_27

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! 1_203

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! 20_35






https://youtu.be/QFDm3ljF7zc


Last edited by Kim on Sun Aug 29, 2021 7:07 am; edited 2 times in total
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Post  Marleysky Sat Aug 28, 2021 9:12 pm

Trains, Planes and Automobiles! Ya just gotta love trains. Great job in the Drone view, enjoyed the whole clip.
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Post  OVERLORD Sun Aug 29, 2021 1:09 am

Thanks for making that video with wonderful shots from above. I didn't know there were that many UP Vista dome coaches still around. Next time, can you take an image of the observation car? Was it a closed one or with a platform? Did the Big Boy need any help from the diesel or was that for safety reasons in case of a breakdown.


Last edited by OVERLORD on Mon Aug 30, 2021 2:47 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : spelling)
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Post  Kim Sun Aug 29, 2021 7:30 am

@OVERLORD wrote:Thanks for making that video with wonderful shots from above. I didn't there were that many UP Vista dome coaches still around. Next time, can you take an image of the observation car? Was it a closed one or with a platform? Did the Big Boy need any help from the diesel or was that for safety reasons in case of a breakdown.

Thank you!  It worked out fairly well, even though I got excited and forgot to start the Go Pro Camera that was piggy-backing on top of the Mavic.

The observation cars were all domed, with several of them having open windows.

I couldn't find the exact make-up of this train's cars, but maybe could be found on an extension from this website:  https://www.up.com/forms/steam-trace.cfm

The diesel, I understand, is a back up.  Since the Big Boy is running on active rails, they need to have a way to get it to a siding in case of a breakdown.  According to one of the Railroad Guys at the crossing, they once had to use the diesel when the Big Boy stopped at a small town and, by prearrangement needed to take on water.  But the tanks cars were so massive that the local people in charge balked at providing them enough to top off.  The had to use the diesel to get them to a better place to fill up.  Don't know if this is true...just a story I was told, but having grown up in a small town, I could see it happening. Smile
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Post  OVERLORD Sun Aug 29, 2021 8:40 am

I understand, the RR coach names can lead to confusion. The observation car is the last car of a consist and has windows where normally a door and the rubber bellow should be. It is totally different from the vista dome car. Before the war, with the heavy weight coaches, observation cars had a balcony with a roof. When looking closely at your video, near the end, this car is visible.

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Up_obs10

I think it's this one:

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Up_obs11



Some were rounded with windows, others remained square. Combined vista dome and observation cars were made as well.

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Catalo12

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Ok_str11

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Canadi10

Fun to have these on your model RR!!
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Post  Kim Sun Aug 29, 2021 8:56 am

@OVERLORD wrote:I understand, the RR coach names can lead to confusion. The observation car is the last car of a consist and has windows where normally a door and the rubber bellow should be. It is totally different from the vista dome car. Before the war, with the heavy weight coaches, observation cars had a balcony with a roof. When looking closely at your video, near the end, this car is visible.

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Up_obs10

I think it's this one:

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Up_obs11



Some were rounded with windows, others remained square. Combined vista dome and observation cars were made as well.

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Catalo12

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Ok_str11

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Canadi10

Fun to have these on your model RR!!

Oh, OK...shows I'm not a Train Guy! Very Happy

I did get this from a site about Big Boy:
----------------------------------------------------
"Bringing up the rear of the train was “Kenefick”, a business car that featured an open platform on the back… affixed to it was a special drum head for the Big Boy 4014 Tour.

This car was built by Pullman in 1950 as Coach Car #5446. It was re-built in April 1963 to be Business Car #99. It was re-numbered to be Business Car #100 in May 1965 and Business Car #119 in April 1986. The name “Kenefick” was added to the car in 1988 in commemoration of John C. Kenefick, president of the Union Pacific from 1971 to 1983.

Kenefick was born in Buffalo, New York, in 1921. After graduating from Princeton and completing a stint in the Navy, he moved to Omaha, where he began working for Union Pacific. By 1952, Kenefick was a train master at Salina, Kansas. He left the Union Pacific that year for a job with Denver & Rio Grande, staying until 1954. From there he worked for the New York Central becoming vice president of operations in 1966.

In 1968 he moved to the Penn Central and then to Union Pacific, returning as vice president of operations. Kenefick replaced cronyism with promotion by merit. In 1971, he became the railroad’s president, a position he held until 1983, when he became chairman of the new Union Pacific system, created by the mergers with Missouri Pacific and Western Pacific. By then he had long held a reputation as possibly the foremost railroad operating man in the nation. His retirement from active service with the railroad in 1986 marked the end of an era in the company’s history."

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Post  getback Sun Aug 29, 2021 9:27 am

Cool looking train and It is Loud !
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Post  rsv1cox Sun Aug 29, 2021 2:14 pm

Thanks for sharing Kim. Gave me chills.

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Post  andrew Sun Aug 29, 2021 4:49 pm

Great pics, especially the drone shots. It appeared to have flown for some distance getting the video.
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Post  OVERLORD Mon Aug 30, 2021 2:45 am

The observation car, or business car as UP calls it,  is well maintained and preserved.

I found her in this data base:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/rsPicture.aspx?id=728782

UP once had a combined observation/vista dome car, or at least prototypes were made. I had a quick dive in my 7/1973 issue of Model Railroader and found these pics.

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Imgp6713


The interior was very luxurious and looks relaxing.

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Imgp6715

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Imgp6714

This coach still exists too:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/rsPicture.aspx?id=917827

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Post  OVERLORD Tue Aug 31, 2021 10:13 am

The above picture in colour:

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Up_90010

And with a future president:

Chasing a BIG Train!  UP's "Big Boy" 4014 Steam Locomotive Rolls Through! Domeli10
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