I saw that too...there's no diamond stack on the Heisler. I was just there 2 weeks ago now. I think Chris must've made a type-o or confused posts. However, the first two Heislers delivered to the eventual West Side Lumber Company were originally wood-fired, and did in fact have diamond stacks in the early days to serve a purpose. This was when the Heislers were working far into the forest, far before they were relegated to mill service and even far before any Shays arrived on the property. I don't know about the #2 (WSL #3), though, but the WSL #2 did for sure. If she did burn wood, she never will again, that's for sure.
I would guarantee the entire crew would walk off on the spot if anyone suggested it. I spent a few minutes ducking under the running board of the old goat while talking to Tom Shreve who was beneath it in the "pit" trying to get her back together. The BJWRR's facilities, on a larger scale, would be far better for Tom and the guys to get the work done...but then again, we're talking about a pole building with a mud-and-oil floor! The rear truck is back, and Tom was working to get everything else under there back together. Apparently in the logging days, I guess they used small turntables like those used on the West Side to turn the speeders around to get the trucks out. In a very strange way, I hope in the future to be able to perform one of those dirty, tiring, curse-out-the-metal-hulk jobs...
As for continuing the little blurb on the whistle...Phil had told me awhile ago he had the Star Brass 5-chime whistle in his care from the Swanton guys and had it up on the 7. Phil was with Roaring Camp on-and-off over the years and was on the crew that rebuilt the 7. When he left Roaring Camp to work for the Georgetown Loop, he took the whistle with him to Silver Plume, and used it on their two operating WSL Shays (the big, superheated #12, and the 14). Jeff I believe mentioned Norman Clark was interested in purchasing the 14 from the West Side; instead, it went to Hal Wilmunder and was used at the Camino, Cable & Northern (article on 'On Track' for the new issue due out later this week). Phil posted a reply to my whistle question yesterday, and he also mentioned they had this whistle on the 40, though never got to use it on her under steam. Phil returned the whistle to Swanton about a month ago.
As for it ever being at the Golden Gate Railroad Museum and used on the 2467, I don't know who said this, as it was elsewhere for the all of four years the PLA was able to operate the 2467, only one of which at the Point. However, I can speculate the possibility of how this story might have some truth to it; probably taking place in the early-90s, and with the 2472, not 2467. Neil Vodden, an old SP steam hogger from my town (Los Gatos) that worked for many years at Roaring Camp and also in the early-40s as a seasonal prune-picker at Billy Jones' orchard and aided in the Wildcat Railroad's construction, was involved in Project 2472 and ran the locomotive for the GGRM until he died a ways back. Interestingly enough, Phil (who trained under Neil) told me that Neil was often assigned to run the 2472 on the Peninsula line from San Francisco-San Jose, and was among his personal favorites to hog on the commute runs in the 50s. Neil was a good friend of Al Smith's and helped build the Swanton Pacific. Quentin Jervis, who purchased Overfair nos. 1914, the incomplete 1915, and the 1500, as well as the Hunslet "Gwen" from Billy Jones' in the 60s, died in the early-80s at which point his equipment was auctioned off. Al Smith got the 1914 and 1915, but lost the bid on the 1500 to Neil! (I don't know if Al knew Neil was even bidding or not). Al donated the 1915 to the California State Railroad Museum, where it's now a centerpiece in the lobby. Among the many things the incomplete locomotive lacked was a cab, so Milon Thorley (a well-known live steamer and for a time owner of the 12" gauge railroad in Folsom, CA, using Erich Thomsen's old "Cricket" from Tilden Park) got Al to give them the 1914's. In exchange, Milon's crew built a new cab which would allow Al to easily fit into with his prosthetic leg (he lost it in a work-related mishap on the SP).
Back to the 1500 (which operated at the Orange County Fair for a time on propane, some of you may remember it), Neil was still involved with the Billy Jones Wildcat Railroad at this time and I guess began to convert the locomotive to a 2-6-0T. When Al was President of the BJWRR I guess, someone proposed the idea of completely re-gauging the BJWRR and all of its rolling stock to make it interchangeable with Swanton; I don't know the whole story. Neil sold the 1500 to the BJWRR, and in 1995 Swanton purchased the locomotive (2 years after Al died) and brought it there. The guys there are working to get her operable again, along with the 1913.
Anyhow, I sort of went on several tangents here, but if the whistle was ever at the GGRM...I'd bet it was used on the 2472, and that Neil's involvement at both the GGRM and the Swanton Pacific would be responsible for it getting there. Phil would know the whole story, and he was also trained under Neil; I'll ask him when he gets settled down a bit as he's in the middle of a move.
I never get tired of hearing more about Roaring Camp. Apparently Kahuku was used on 'the hill' quite a bit at one time, per a story posted by Earl Knoob elsewhere, I could just imagine trying to get the little brute up the switchback. I think you'd need to genetically-engineer a three-handed individual to do the job a little less stress-free to try and sand, fire, and run her stress-free (or about as much stress-free as normal steam operation can get...)! Either that or rebuild the Spring Canyon trestle, or sand somewhere else. How I love that little engine...
Here's Neil with Kahuku on the wye in 1966. Phil told me that some of these pictures were used in Bruce MacGregor's first book on the South Pacific Coast.
Edited By Ed Kelley on 1110858039