Now that Engine No. 9’s tender has been restored, the next part of the historic locomotive to be worked on is the cab. Unfortunately, the cab is in even worse shape than the tender was. Much of its metal has been corroded beyond repair. After one hundred years outside corrosion has built up between the sheet steel and the trim and the metal has been deformed. About the only pieces salvageable are the roof supports and the half-round trim pieces. Everything else needs to be newly fabricated. Although not much of the original material can be incorporated, the rusty cab will provide the blueprint for rebuilding.
As was the case with the tender, the first step was lifting the cab from the engine and transporting it to the Millerick Brothers’ shop.
When the cab arrived at the Millericks’ shop the restoration process began with the removal of hundreds of rivets, which freed up the supports and the half-round trim. The Millericks then built a cab from new steel, drilled new rivet holes, and test-fitted the supports and trim to the new frame. The rivet holes will be precisely where they were in the original cab.
After the test fitting, the cab will be disassembled. Parts that are hidden will be primed and painted to prevent rusting, and then the cab will be rebuilt with hundreds of new rivets. Once it has been assembled, it will be sent to Delta Sandblasting for final paint.
We are excited to be moving forward with this next phase in the restoration. While the cab is at the Millericks, we will be working on-site to restore No. 9’s I-beam frame. Special thanks to Jeff and Celeste Craemer for funding this part of the restoration. It’s a busy time, and all of this work is only possible because of the ongoing support we have received from our donors. It is the generosity and effort of all of our supporters that has enabled us to get so far on this important project.