Vol. 19, No. 5 September / October 2003  Issue Select 
Issue Details
Cover Title: The Engines They Called 'Water Buffalos'
Cover Subtitle: Our 2003 Convention: Weekend in Winston
On the Cover: K3 No. 205 rests at the Shaffers Crossing round house along with a Y4 2-8-8-2 in the background in December of 1930. The air tank sitting on the pilot deck of the K3 is an identifying feature more often related to the highly successful K1's. The overpowering size of the boiler is clearly evident in this view. Our story of the problem-plagued K3's begins on page 4.
Articles In This Issue
Mail Bag - Staff Arrow
Classic Ad: 1952 - Staff Arrow
Norfolk and Western's Water Buffalos / Saga of the Problem-Plagued K-3's - James N. Gillum
  Photo N&W photographers used a "fish-eye" lens to achieve this worm's eye view of K3 No. 201, amplifying the massive size of the locomotive even more. Note the spoked wheels on the lead truck. While impressive in terms of physical size, the operating results were less than satisfactory. No. 201 was sold to the Richmond, Fredericksburg & Potomac Railroad in 1944 (N&W Photo, N&WHS Archives collection)
  Photo Built by Roanoke in June 1916, K-1 No. 100 was the first 4-8-2 owned by the N&W. Captured at Portsmouth, OH on August 3, 1956, the effects of the post-war modernization can be seen in the form of the slant front cab, enlarged sand dome, cast steel pilot wheels, firebox lagging and the addition of a 22,000 gallon, 23-ton tender from a Pere Marquette Berkshire purchased from the C&O Railway. The 84-1/2" diameter of the smokebox front pales in comparison to the 97" diameter of the K-3's. (N&WHS Archives Collection)
  Photo The massive size of the K3's is evident in this photo of No. 200. Here we get a clear view of the very large counterweights present on the third driver in an attempt to compensate for the effects of the long, heavy main rod. The 63" drivers simply could not be weighted sufficiently to eliminate the rough riding and pounding of the rails at higher speeds. Disliked as they were, the K-3's were excellent steamers. (Otto perry photo, Jim Gillum Collection)
  Photo During World War II, the K3's were used between Roanoke and Radford to pull trains carrying workers to the Radford Army Arsenal. That steam lines had been installed for use in passenger service is confirmed by this photo of train No. 37 at Durham, NC on May 21, 1944. Aside from finding a K-3 heading up a passenger train on the Durham Line, the presence of stenciling on the flanks of the tender is notable. Given the level of dissatisfaction with the engines, it's surprising that they received this treatment before they were sold. (R. D. Carneal photo/N&WHS Archives collection)
  Photo Use of the K-3's in passenger service on the Durham LIne would appear to have been more common than previously thought. Here, the 209 with train No. 36 is seen approaching the Durham station on April 21, 1944. (R. B. Carneal photo/N&WHS Archives collection)
  Photo K-3 No. 201 is seen east of Crewe, VA in what is believed to be a photograph staged by the N&W. When the locomotive was designed, the railroad hoped that the long lines of heavy coal-hauling gondolas behing the K3's would be a regular occurrence on this portion of the road. Unfortunately, they never met the expectations of the Motive Power Department (N&W photo/N&WHS Archives collection)
  Table The History of the K-3's (Jim Gillum)
Memories of Park Street / 25 Years Ago in Roanoke - Jon Boetcher
  Photo This was one of the jackpot shots for me during the summer of 1981. One of my favorites, 6505 (an SD50S) leads the units hauling the hoppers out of town. What made it perfect in my mind was the chance to photograph some foreign power as well. In this case, a Union Pacific unit follows along. (Jon Boettcher photo)
  Photo Here we have a typical mix of power, both four and six-axle units heading north on a June, 1981 day. the signal on the left is for the eastbound main-line while the high signal in the rear governs movements into the yard and the westbound main line. (Jon Boettcher photo)
  Photo 502 (nee 764, built in 1957) was one of the first six GP9s ordered by the railroad when it began to dieselize. The trailing unit, 2430, originally belonged to the Nickel Plate and came to the N&W with the merger. This crossing (2nd Street) is now history and has been replaced by a bridge. On the right and behind the train is the old Norfolk and Western Freight Station with now houses the collection of the Virginia Museum of Transportation. The train is moving east out of Park Street. (Jon Boettcher photo)
  Photo The North Delivery crew is using a GP30, built in 1962, to do some switching at the old freight house on this day in April 1980. What was once road power eventually becomes yard power and today the crew switches with SD40-2's (Jon Boettcher photo)
  Photo Here's some of the old junk I wasn't sure I wanted to bother to shoot. Look back now, I'm glad I took the time to put these and other older units on film. (Jon Boettcher photo)
  Photo It's a cloudy day as two GE units "sandwich" an EMD heading East ou of Park Street. This view has changed quite a bit and crews now leaving Roanoke pass under two new bridges and see a different skyline. (Jon Boettcher photo)
  Photo Motive power on the Mountaineer on this day was one of the rare P30CHs. Between August 1975 and January of 1976 General Electric built only 25 of them. Also rare are the passengers in this view...almost none! The bridge beyond the rear of the train carries Park Street over the tracks (Jon Boettcher photo)
  Photo It seems like just yesterday I was taking pictures of SD45s and now, of course, they're all gone. In this photo the units are heading west to 24th street for servicing. The building to the right, if my memory is correct, is what used to be the railroad's Express Station. Torn down years ago, a parking lot for Norfolk Southern employees is now in its place. (Jon Boettcher photo)
  Photo In June of 1979 it was still possible to see an N&W unit painted blue with the half-moon logo. The second unit, an SD45, was all in black. The crew on this black and blue combo is heading back to couple up and wait for the carmen to arrive and give them their brake test. (Jon Boettcher photo)
Weekend in Winston / The N&WHS Annual Convention - Charles "Bucky" H. Wilson, Jr.
  Photo During a tour of an auto-loading facility at Walkertown, N&WHS members examine a C39-8 locomotive, graciously provided for our exploration by Norfolk Southern (Charles H. Wilson, Jr. photo)
  Photo Leave it the camera bugs to solve the problem of having nothing to shoot at the moment....they shoot each other!  (Charles H. Wilson, Jr. photo)
  Photo Convention attendees pose on the turntable with N&W GP9 No. 620. Spencer Shops has decked the locomotive out in "redbird" paint, making a most attractive representation of N&W's first non-steam passenger locomotive. (Charles H. Wilson, Jr. photo)
  Photo The Spencer crew stands proudly in front of a C31 N&W caboose, which brought up the markers on the train which N&WHS members rode around the grounds. (Charles H. Wilson, Jr. photo)
  Photo For members wishing to ride a more tradtional passenger consist, there was a two coach passenger train pulled by Southern FP-7 No. 6133. (Charles H. Wilson, Jr. photo)
  Photo At Walkertown, members received an education on how an auto loading facility works. Autos were being unloaded constantly during our visit. (Charles H. Wilson, Jr. photo)
  Photo At our Saturday banquet, President Jim Gillum awards the Precision Transportation Award to Clint Smoke in appreciation of his efforts in handling membership renewals. (Charles H. Wilson, Jr. photo)
  Photo Our banquet speaker, Steve Hutchinson, gave an outstanding presentation on the Pocahontas Division of the N&W...then and now. (Charles H. Wilson, Jr. photo)
The Tennessean / life as Pass Rider: 2 - James Nichols
  Photo A brief layover at Union Station in St. Louis allowed time to take a few slides of trains entering the station, Here the City of St. Louis makes its way through the yard to its station stop in its namesake city. (Jim Nichols photo)
  Photo About the only steam left in Richmond in June of 1958 was this sad row of RF&P 4-8-4s in a "dead line" in Acca yard (Jim Nichols photo)
Nuggest From the Archives / Freight Train Air Brakes for Pre-schoolers - Gordon Hamilton
  Photo Fig.1: N&W Class K-2 locomotive No. 120 with 6ET brake equipment. The brake pipe feed valve is used to regulate the brake pipe pressure in the train. (N&W photo/VPI&SU Collection)
  Drawing Fig.2: Piping diagram of basic "ABDW"-type single capacity freight brake equipment. (N&WHS Archives Collection)
  Drawing Fig.3: Freight Car Combined Reservoir. Note separator plate represented by dotted lines. (N&WHS Archives Collection)
  Drawing Fig.4: Freight Car Brake Diagram (N&WHS Archives Collection)
  Drawing Fig.5: Forces acting on a freight car wheel (N&WHS Archives Collection)
  Table Fig.6: Variations in feed valve settings (N&WHS Archives Collection)
In Scale / Our Convention Contest Winners - George Hughes
Vol. 19, No. 5 September / October 2003  Issue Select