Saturday, November 28, 2009

11/28/09 Work session

Today we finished installing the last 3 of the turntable ring rails. The first 2 were the 20+ foot long ones and they weren't very hard to install. The last one was around 8 feet long and had to be cut from a spare rail and then heated in order to curve it to fit the space available.
Many volunteers were hand to help us push the turntable bridge itself around the pit to test it. It worked well, but will still need some slight adjustments.
See our photos online here.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Turntable work session 11/21/09

Today 11/21/09, our hearty band of volunteers, was able to install 4 more sections of the turntables ring rail. It seems that we only have 2 more pieces to install and they have already been laid out for the installation. According to Trustee Steven Torborg, the last 2 rails were placed and can be spiked down the next work session. We have also determined that there is  bout 6 feet of rail missing. We can only speculate that this last rail must have been cut and the missing piece thrown out. We do have a section of rail that matches what was in the pit and have been offered help by a volunteer from NYC Transit to bend the rail for us.

Remember that about 15 years ago, the LIRR had planned on filling in this piece of historic machinery. Only the due diligence of a few of us kept that from happening, but not before the ring rail was already taken out. After the remaining rails are spiked down, we will begin the process of getting bids for the new ties for the bridge.


The last Saturday work session

A lot of hands were on board (11/7/09) to make the heavy work bearable!
Since there really is no one left who put these turntables together, we always have to improvise and use our common sense. Coming onto the bridge from the lead track, a piece of equipment will push the bridge down which causes the wheels to impact the ring rail, so we have to minimize the drop in order to minimize damage to the concrete wall. We placed a ring rail section under the bridge wheels at the entrypoint and then set another ring rail almost 180 degrees across under the other end of the bridge and pushed the bridge over it.
The bridge got bound up a bit so we moved the bridge from that rail and checked it for level. We found a few ties that had to be notched and then after notching them, re-checked for level. BOOM** Right on the money!
We drilled a series of holes in the ties to set spikes so we could temporarliy spike the rail to keep it in place.
Unfortunately, due to the inclement weather, there  was no work session last Saturday (11/14/09) and today (11/21/09) I was not available to participate.
I will get more information as it becomes available.