Our biggest step yet in the restoration of Engine No. 9 has begun: restoration of No. 9’s 3300-pound metal tender. The tender is the rear portion of the locomotive, where fuel and water were stored, the basic ingredients needed to run a steam engine. This section held the water. A 650-gallon steel fuel tank will be created in the coming months and will sit on top of the restored tender.
Over the last century the metal of the tender has corroded, opening holes in the metal skin. An important part of returning No. 9 to its condition in 1921 is to repair this damage.
On August 25, the tender was removed from No. 9 and moved to the Millerick Brothers shop in Sonoma County. There, decades of metal working experience will go into the repair and restoration of the tender, keeping as much of the original metal and rivets as possible. Once the work is done the next step will likely be restoring the “bones” of the cab, the place where the engineer and fireman worked.
Thanks to the Millericks, to Phil Joy, who handled moving the tender, and to Jeff Craemer ,who has generously donated the cost of this portion of the restoration. And as always, thanks to all of our supporters who have made it possible for us to reach this milestone.