NEW NEWS 2012
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MOW held a little dinner to say farewell to Sandy Coots, who will be moving to Oregon at the end of the week. The gathering was to say thanks for all the hard work and dedication that Sandy has done for the musium and MOW.
Photos from our Sixth Annual Signal Department Training.
Another busy day at the Signal Shop. Signal Shop Worker Karl, Student Signal Maintainer Bob and Signal Associate Dan worked on a problem that showed up in the PSVRR Griswold No. 01 Gate Mechanism, found the problem (a cam switch needed some tender care) and made the repair. Bob then started the process of installation of the door gasket material. Meanwhile Signal Shop Workers Joe (2) and Carl rearranged and removed the "stuff" from the work bench top in the Office Container. This was done so relay testing, to begin in earnest soon, can begin. That done, Joe (2) and Carl started working on the gong restoration projects. First thing in the morning Gary installed the Brady Wire Label Machine software into the recently set up computer and connected up the label machine. Then, he started to disassembled Wabco Gate Mechanism No. 6 so that certain assemblies within it could be used for demonstration purposes when he gives a Training Module at the Signal Department Annual Training on September 15th. The whole crew, with Supervisor Joe (1), MOW Shop Worker Heather, Signal Engineer Dale, and visitors to the Shop, Signal Radio Shop Supervisor Al and his visitor Thom all went to Beans at Carol's in West Sacramento. It was a Good Day at the Shop today!
Our Sixth Annual Signal Department Training is scheduled for this Saturday, September 15th beginning at 9:00 AM in the Big-4 Conference Room. If you have not let Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul know that your coming please do so now. This year learn the basics of AC Power, Boolean Algebra, Wabco Mechanism Restoration, Signal Shop MSDS Program, Capitol Mall Preemption and more. Be a part of your Department. Attend the Annual Training!!!
The new SSRR-UP Connection is nearing completion. The track is installed and ballast was being installed today. The ballast cars were so heavy that Roadmaster Red MUed the SSRR 2008 and 2030 to make sure the move could be made easily. On the crew was Signal Department Supervisors Al (Locomotive Engineer) and Dave (Brakeman). There was one minor mishap as one of the ballast cars climbed up a pile of ballast and went on the ground. The company installing the ballast, H&H Engineering, quickly brought over a large wheel loader and lifted the car back onto the track. Notice Director of Railroad Operations, Alan, adding special wishful and hopeful energy to the back on track operation! It appears once the ballast installation is complete the track will be usable. The derails are still not in place, but soon will be in the near future. This was a very good operation and experience for SSRR Operations. Way To Go Crew!
A crew of three, Signal Shop Supervisor Joe, Senior Signal Worker Bill and the Signal Engineer completed Phase II of the current modernization plan. Phase I installed a computer in the Signal Shop Office/Storage/Work Bench Container (See New News August 25th). Phase II , completed today, connects the computer to the internet. The crew installed a network switch in the MOW Office container where an existing CAT5 cable services the MOW computer. From this switch a CAT5 cable was installed to the computer area in the Signal container. When completed the MOW computer still works and connects to the internet and the Signal Shop computer does too. The next phase will install a network switch within the Signal Shop container, a cable to the building rafters and a WiFi transmitter. Get you WiFi devices ready. We'll soon have the ability to connect to the internet near the MOW and Signal Shops. Now... That's Progress!!
Signal Department Scheduler and Signal Maintainer Jim is back on duty after having been on layoff most of June, July and August for knee surgery. To welcome Jim's return a Steak Sandwich Lunch was held at Vince's Italian Restaurant in West Sacramento. In attendance were Signal Maintenance Supervisor Dave, Signal Shop Supervisor Joe, Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul, Signal Radio Shop Supervisor Al, Signal Maintainer Jim and the Signal Engineer (Not shown in the group photo because he took it.) It's good to have Jim back! Welcome Back Jim!!!!
Signal Shop Worker Scott has accepted a position as Student Signal Maintainer after being on the Waiting List for four and a half months. Scott will start his Student Signal Maintainer training as a Level I Student Signal Maintainer developing his Personal Training Method and working on his introduction to various signal equipment, test equipment, signal circuits and Federal Railroad Administration Rules. Scott plans to continue volunteering in the Signal Shop much to the relief of Signal Shop Supervisor Joe. Photos show Scott, on the right, being welcomed into the Signal Engineering and Training Department by the Department Supervisor Paul.
The Signal Shop Goes Modern - Well Sorta. The Signal Shop has been loaned a computer by one of our crew to be used until something better comes along. Prompting this was the new Brady Label Maker Machine that requires a computer to make it work. The next phase of the modernization will be to make a connection to the internet and following that a phase to provide WiFi at the Signal Shop area. Slowly but surely the Signal Shop will creep into the Twenty-First Century........... Way to Go Crew!!!
A Signal Shop Crew of eight continued steady restoration and Signal Shop setup work today. Signal Shop Supervisor Joe was on leave and substituting for him was Signal Engineer Dale. Student Signal Maintainer Bob, Signal Shop Worker Scott and Signal Associate Dan worked on the new work bench being restore. This is the work bench donated to the Signal Department by MOW Shop Supervisor Sandy a few weeks ago. It is almost ready for use. Signal Shop Worker Carl started restoration of Gong No. 01. Signal Associate Gary provided some training on the bead blaster for Carl and then Carl made some pretty nice looking gong castings look like new! Gary continued working on Wabco No. 05 and has started the rewire. Signal Shop Worker Jim continued working in the hot Storage Container doing inventory. He reports that all relays are now inventoried and listed in his computer program. Signal Shop Worker Karl helped Dale with some small projects and then worked with him on some administrative activities. Everyone had a good time today!
A Small Signal crew of one and two completed the Monthly Inspections for August today. After a Safety Briefing with Manager of Railroad Operations, Dick, Signal Engineering Supervisor, Paul (1), working as a Lone Worker completed the Sutterville Road Inspection. Moving to Capitol Mall a crew with Paul (1) as EIC and Student Signal Maintainer Brenton did the Monthly Inspection there. During the Inspection it was observed that the pre-emption was not working properly. The City Traffic Controller was receiving the pre-emption signal from the Instrument Cabinet but instead of turning the east bound traffic signal lights green the controller was turning them to yellow and then to red. This is opposite of what is supposed to happen. The City traffic signal department was contacted. Good Job Crew!!!
The Signal Engineer was roaming around this morning a spotted SSRR MOW slaving away removing track and rail from the old UP Main Line that has been abandoned north of the SP Train Depot. The rail will be used o build the new SSRR crossover from the CSRM to the old SP Boiler Shop (Future CSRM Technology Museum). Do they all look like they are having fun?
Union Pacific crews were working on the new diamond which was recently installed which will allow the SSRR tracks to cross the UP Main Line. Still roaming around with camera the Signal Engineer was able to get some photos of the work going on but couldn't safely get close enough to show the whole crossover. It will not be long before SSRR trains are moving over that crossover.....
Here is the proposed 2013 Signal Department Calendar. Mark your 2013 calendar now so that these dates can be reserved. Now that we are a crew of twenty-nine it is going to be difficult to get us all in the same place next year but let's hope we can do it!
2013 SIGNAL DEPARTMENT CALENDAR
04-13-2013 Signal Shop Open House and Wienie Grill. Group Photo
05-04-2013 Part 214 Training and Exam. Group Photo [Backup]
06-01-2013 BBQ at Miller Park. Group Photo [Backup]
09-21-2013 Annual Training Session
11-02-2013 Recertification Training and Exam
11-15-2013 Signal Department Annual Dinner
There is a naked Caboose in the old SP Boiler Shop near the Signal Shop area. The UP Caboose that has been parked behind the Museum for use as a background and a piece of adventure equipment by many children has been moved to the shops for repainting. It is being made good looking for display during the coming UP 150th Birthday Celebration (September 28th, 29th and 30th). Under direction of Restoration Shop Worker Don a crew of many volunteers has been working long hours to remove the old paint by using a non-toxic paint remover and then by scraping or other tedious means to remove the little specs of the stuff. You can see how naked it is now in the photos above. Prior to painting by a painting contractor, the caboose will be moved to the Erecting Shop and a temporary painting shop will be set up. It will be painted the same UP colors as it was previously. Don is still looking for helpers. If you want to join the fun call him at 916-323-7700.
A Signal Shop Crew of six enjoyed the natural air conditioning in the old SP Boiler Shop today as they continued with a couple of projects. After Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1) provided the Safety Briefing Signal Associate Gary and Signal Engineer Dale set up the donated Brady Label Machine and proceeded to finish the numbering plan for the Wabco No.5 wire labels and print them. Developing the list of labels to make was the easy part. Getting the label machine set up was difficult because, like a lot of equipment of that type, the directions are not very well written. By the end of the day, however, the labels were finally printed. Student Signal Maintainer Bob brought in some hard board to face the restored work bench that we started fixing up last week. Bob, Joe (1). Signal Shop Worker Scott and Signal Shop Worker Dennis cut the hard board, installed the shelving and back boards on the bench and installed the hard board facing. Only thing left to do now is install facing boards and perhaps an electrical receptacle strip and the work bench will be ready for use. If was another fun day at the Signal Shop!!
It was real hot today but the Signal Shop Crew working today didn't notice; they were having too much fun! This was Signal Shop Worker Carl's first work day. He was asked to do a status inventory of our spare gongs. He accepted the challenge and Signal Shop Worker Joe (2) volunteered to help. A nice status report was developed and a candidate gong chosen for the first to be restored. Student Signal Maintainer Bob and Signal Shop Worker Dennis completed adjusting the cam switches on the PSVRR Griswold No. 1 Gate Mechanism. Signal Associate Gary and Signal Engineer Dale (Acting as Signal Shop Supervisor for Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1) who is on layoff) developed a wiring diagram to be used for rewire of Wabco No. 5 Gate Mechanism. A work bench was donated to the Signal Department by MOW Shop Supervisor Sandy. It had a a few bent pieces but Gary, Dennis, Bob and Dale straightened out the bent parts and cut plywood to be used for a work surface (which was missing) and for upper and lower shelves. By the time everyone looked up it was 5:00 PM and time to go... A Good Time was had by all!!
Signal Department Supervisors Al, Dale and Joe traveled to Tony's Fruit Stand north of Marysville and Highway 70 and picked up (not picked) some boxes of Fay Elberta pea0ches. These are beautiful freestone peaches like the kind we used to be able to purchase in local grocery stores. They may turn this into an annual event. Any crew member want to be on the Peach List for next year and go to Tony's let the Signal Engineer know......... Yum Yum!!
Working as a Lone Worker, Signal Maintainer Marc implemented the Monthly Inspections at Q Street, R Street, Broadway and Front Street today. All Systems passed inspections with no problems noted. Good Job Marc!!
Early tomorrow morning, Saturday, August 4th, the UP and their contractors will begin the process of switching over the main lines through the Rail Yard. The first cut over will be Main Line Track Number One and is scheduled to be in operation before Monday the 6th. The second Main Line will be cut over next weekend beginning early morning Saturday, August 11th, with completion Monday, August 13th. The new platforms are scheduled to be placed in operation for passenger trains Monday morning August 13th. The photos, taken from within the Signal Shop, show the new platforms and some of what appears to be stationary fuel equipment (Orange stuff - no.. not the cones...). Signal Department Signal Associate Jim (2) has been working on this project for months. We hope he still has all his hair by the time it is completely finished. We miss you Jim! Get It Done Jim!!!!!!
Paul Gumbinger has been appointed to the Sacramento County Design Review Committee. The Committee, made up of three members, is authorized with the purpose of providing design review of discretionary projects and technical guidance for the Sacramento County Design Review Program for Commercial and Mixed Use Projects and the Multi-family Design Guidelines.NEW SIGNAL SHOP MEMBER SIGNED UP TODAY!
New Volunteer and soon to be Docent Carl was interviewed today, offered a position as a Signal Shop Worker, which he accepted, and the Signal Department has it's 36th crew member (Current No. 29)! Check your email soon for a Welcome Announcement for Carl. Welcome to the Signal Department Carl....... That's Carl on the left giving Signal Shop Supervisor Joe his Application.
It was a typical Sacramento 100° day today so the crew at the Signal Shop closed it down at 1:00 PM. Scott (Signal shop Worker) and Gary (Signal Associate) continued work on Wabco No. 5. They assembled the larger equipment into the enclosure. Other crew members; Karl (Signal Shop Worker), Bob (Student Signal Maintainer), Dennis (Signal Shop Worker) and Joe (2) (Signal Shop Worker) continued working on adjusting the CAM Switch in the PSVRR Griswold No. 1 unit using Bob's special gate mounted protactor. Later Joe (2) and Joe (1) (Signal Shop Supervisor) were deep in a meeting which, hopefully, was about the Relay Testing Program.
The Signal Shop Crew, although not large, got a lot done again today. Signal Shop Worker Dennis and Signal Associate Gary, assisted by Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1) explored the Shops for Wabco Gate mechanism mounting hardware and came up with enough pieces to mount Wabco No. 05 to a mast. Mounting to the mast will facilitate and make it easier to reassemble. In the meantime, Student Signal Maintainer Bob set him self up to adjust the cam switch in PSVRR Griswold No. 01. He developed and built a large, special protractor that mounts on a gate arm. The protractor allowed him to set the gate at various angles and then easily adjust the cam switch. No guessing!! Now there is a guy using his noodle to make things less stressful. That's the way to do it Bob!
Congratulations are in order for Student Signal Maintainer Bob who has successfully passed the Level II knowledge check and is now
Stepped up to Level III. His primary focus now will be to reinforce the monthly, quarterly and annual inspection process by participating
in as many inspections as possible. Bob stepped up into Level II on December 6, 2011 and entered the Signal Department on May 21, 2011. He is a member
of Docent Class 28 and during the week works in the museum usually at the Cab Forward. Plus on Thursday you can find Bob
working on signal mechanism restoration projects in the Signal Shop. Way to go Bob and now on to Level III.
The Signal Engineer and his wife got to visit Chandler Farms today near Selma, California and enjoy the beautiful orchards, tasty nectarines and peaches, observe harvest operations and enjoy the company of the farm's farmers. Who are the farmers? Emeritus SSRR Track Programs Manager John and his Dad Bill. The Chandler Farms have been operated by John's family since 1878! Still existing is one of the aged draft horse barns where the farm working Draft Horses were housed and some of the original and dusty horse tack is still hanging on the barn walls keeping family history real. Nectarine harvesting was happening today with fruit pickers on tall ladders quickly and expertly removing ripe fruit from the trees to the nectarine bins. Note: Signal Engineer having worked in the apricot and peach orchards that used to populate the landscape around Winters, California was surprised to see, for the first time, aluminum tripod picking ladders. Remember how heavy those tall wooden tripod picking ladders were? We had the absolute pleasure of meeting John's Dad, Bill. It now all makes sense why John is such a friendly and great guy. His Dad is too! That's him looking into the pickup truck window in the photo above. Can you see the resemblance? John has been working long hours and does not seem to miss his, not too long ago, desk job. In fact it appears that he is really enjoying himself being a real California Farmer in the Big Valley! By the way. John has not left the SSRR. We'll get to see him around here MOWing, Conductoring and Brakemaning!! May you have many Great Harvests John and Be Safe Out There.
Although, small in comparison to some of the other Docents Classes, Class Number 53 made lots of noise and asked a lot of questions today at the Docent Job Fair. Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1), Signal Maintenance Supervisor Dave, Senior Signal Worker Bill and Signal Engineer Dale did the honors at the Signal Department table. Other Signal Department crew members staffing tables were Signal Accounting and Assets Clerk Linda, at the Horse to Horsepower table, and Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul (1), at the Stationmaster table. Another Track Programs crew member was in attendance. Maintenance Of Way Worker Heather was staffing the Maintenance Of Way table where they were giving away candy. Bill tried to sneak off with it. Heather got wise and took it back; with a struggle she won! Manager of Railroad Operations, Dick was staffing the Operations Department table and Car Department Workers Myrletta and Jon were taking care of business at the Car Department table. Also there, for the Restoration Shop, was Chief Mechanical Officer, Al, and Road Foreman of Engines Red (no photos). The Class Number 53 Docents were very interested in everything. There are probably twelve or fourteen class members. Signal Department, representatives handed out several Applications but lost track after the first five. Guess we need to do a little better on our recorder keeping. Heather and Myrletta are smart. They have the class members sign up on a sign up sheet... Hmmmm.. It was a fun afternoon.
The Signal Shop had a crew of ten in attendance today. Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1) provided "Fuel" for Karl, Jim (2), Dan, Scott, Gary, Bob, Dennis, Paul (1) and Dale. Jim continued steady work on the inventory project. Scott and Gary continued work on Wabco No. 5. The motor is now re-assembled. Joe, Karl and Dale met on Admin type stuff while Paul went over Grade Crossing Warning System uses and purposes with Bob. Dennis and Scott set up the spare batteries so they could be connected to a battery charger. Later Bob, Dan, Karl, Joe and Dennis put power to PSVRR Griswold No. 1. It worked! There probably needs to be a little adjustment of cam switches but it worked smoothly. Some of the crew went to a new restaurant for beans that opened on Jibboom Street recently. It's name is JR's Texas BBQ and was pretty good! The Crew did Good today!!
This year's second Docent Job Fair will take place this Saturday at 1:00 PM until 2:00 PM in the Stanford. Dave, Bill, Joe (1) and Dale will be there to man the Signal Department tables. If you know a Docent, does not need to be in a new class, that might want to participate in Maintenance Of Way or Signal Department activities be sure to let them know we'll be there. Here is our most recent recruiting poster.
A Signal Crew with Signal Maintainer Marc as EIC completed the July inspections today. Crew members were Signal Worker Randy and Student Signal Maintainers Bob and Brenton. Quarterly and Monthly Inspections were completed at Capitol Mall, Q Street and R Street with no problems found. All light fixtures were given the Washy-Washy. On-Track Safety procedure was Exclusive Track Occupancy as Excursion Trains were in operation today. Communications between the EIC were with the Conductor, who happened to be Signal Associate Eric, and they were perfect! Way to go crew and Operations!!
MOW was working on the switch that will eventually lead to the new track that will cross the new Union Pacific Main Lines and then to our Shops (Future Technology Museum). The Director of the Railroad, Alan, was seen operating the tamper and the other thing with the funny grinder upper things on one end. That's MOW Manager, Chris, giving directions. It appears that they are making steady progress. The new track to the Shops needs to be completed by September 28th the first day of the Union Pacific 150 Year Anniversary at the CSRM. One of the UP steam locomotives is scheduled to be coming over to the CSRM via the new track..............
A Signal Crew of four with Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul (1) as EIC, Signal Maintenance Supervisor Dave, and Signal Maintainer Students Bob and Brenton, implemented the Quarterly and Monthly Inspections at Broadway, Front Street and Sutterville Road today. Some watch and wait bond wires spotted on the approaches to Broadway otherwise no problems found and all crossing passed the inspections. Thanks Crew!!!!
Congratulations to Brenton for passing the level I knowledge check and stepping up to Student Signal Maintainer Level II. Brenton was accepted into the Signal Department on 3 March 2012 and in the ensuing 5 months has participated in numerous Monthly and Quarterly Inspections. He has worked well with all crews and accepts all assignments cheerfully. We look forward to his completion of Level II and moving on to Level III.
The training material for a Student Signal Maintainer to use for eventual certification as a Signal Maintainer is organized into three distinct levels of skill acquisition with a fourth level for final initial certification. level I covers "Basics and Vocabulary, Level II is "Uses and Purpose", Level III is "Inspection Reinforcement".
Today was a Great day at the Signal Shop because Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1) announced the appointment of Jim (2) to the Assignment of Signal Department MSDS Coordinator (Which he graciously accepted). Jim had volunteered to develop the needed MSDS Binder late last year and completed it in February this year (See New News February 23, 2012). To acknowledge Jim's accomplishment he was presented with a "You Made It" Certificate. Later in the day, to celebrate Jim's assignment the Signal Engineer provided "Beans" for the crew - Burgers from Squeezers! The description of the MSDS Coordinator Assignment has been posted on the Signal Server in a folder titled "Assignment Descriptions". Signal Shop work went on today too, and although due to the warm temperatures the crew stopped for the day earlier than usual, quite a lot was accomplished. Scott and Dennis removed the batteries and a battery shelf from the storage container and secured them to a pallet so that they can be easily transported. Gary continued working on Wabco 05. He is in the process of reassembling the motor with new bearings and cleaned up stator rotor. Nice blue Gary!! Dan and Bob , joined by Scott and Dennis later, and assisted by Joe on the forklift proceeded to install the counter weights on PSVRR Griswold 01. They got it balanced perfectly. In the mean time Jim continued grinding away on the inventory............ It got Hot today. We left!!!
The Signal Engineer has posted a Briefing No. 2012-002 titled; "Signal Department Staffing Report - Mid-year 2012" on the Signal Server in the folder named "Signal Briefings". If it sounds interesting take a look. For those of you that do not have access to the Signal Server and would like to review Signal Department Briefings please contact the Signal Engineer.
This Friday, July 13th (Hope the Crew is not Superstitious), a crew with Paul (1) as EIC will implement inspections (Monthly and Quarterly) at Broadway, Front Street and Sutterville Road. On Sunday, July 15th, a crew with Marc as EIC will implement inspections (Monthly and Quarterly) at Capitol Mall, Q Street and R Street. Check the Calendar Section on this site to remind you if you are assigned to one of these crews and if so contact your EIC.
In conjunction with Docent Class Number 53 the Museum Training Staff is holding another Docent Job Fair. As usual, all the various departments within the Museum and the Railroad will be there to show the new Docents, as well as any previously graduated Docents, what opportunities and fun things to do are available for them to participate in. The Signal Department is specifically looking for Docents with skills in Purchasing Agent type work, Information Technology, Radio installation, repair and administration, Railroad or Industry Safety, Library Research, Historical Writing and News Reporting. If you know anyone with these skills who is a Docent (Or even if they are not - There will be another Docent Class later this year!) please encourage them to attend the Job Fair. The Docent Job Fair will begin at 1:00 PM, Saturday, July 21st in the Stanford Gallery. The Signal Engineer is also looking for Signal Crew Members to help at the Signal Department table. If you would like to participate please contact the Signal Engineer.
The 22nd Shop Work Day for 2012 is this Thursday. The Signal Shop Crew will be working, as usual, on Inventory and Restoration Projects. If you have not been to the Signal Shop for awhile you are welcome to visit to see what is going on. If you have not been around and would like to visit contact the Signal Shop Supervisor.
A busy crew is a happy crew, so the crew today was very happy. While Signal Shop Worker Jim (2) slaved away at the seemingly never ending task of inventorying the shop materials and spare parts the rest of the crew was busy in the shop. Then excitement for the day was when the PSVRR Griswold # 01 was set up in the high roofed area of the building. The mast which supports the light fixtures and the gongs was transported to the gate mechanism and install on top of it. Next, the gate arm was attached to the conversion bracket and lifted to the clear position. The assembly now looks close to being a complete gate system. Next Shop Day will probably see the unit working under power. Signal Shop Workers Karl and Dennis and Signal Associate Dan were working on the Griswold unit while Signal Shop Worker Scott and Signal Associate Gary continued on the restore of Wabco No. 05. Scott has been getting a lot of practice painting and is getting very good at it. Gary went parts shopping and was partially successful. Earlier in the morning Supervisor Joe (1), Dennis, Scott and Jim (2) cleared away materials from the battery storage area in the Shop Storage Container and started to charge some batteries in preparation of energizing the Griswold unit next week. It was a darn busy day for everyone!!
The signal Shop crew made progress today without the Signal Shop Supervisor who was on Layoff. The Signal Engineer did the "Fuel" run and Signal Maintenance Supervisor Dave, who was working in the Museum Restoration Shop on the SP 6051 unlocked the doors for the crew. Signal Shop Worker Jim (2) continued with the task of inventorying all the materials and parts the Signal Shop has accumulated. (There is no way to know exactly how much the inventory will save the future crews in time and funds but it is estimated to be considerable! big Thank You to Jim (2) for that!!!) Signal Associate Dan and Student Signal Maintainer bob continued to set up a gate arm for PSVRR Griswold # 01. They completed it today. Signal Associate Gary continued working on restoration of Wabco Gate Mechanism No. 05. It was another Great Day in the Signal Shop!
Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul held a make-up session of the Annual Part 214 EIC Training which took place in May (See New News May 5th). Attending were Signal Maintainer Marc, Student Signal Maintainer Bob and four members of the Placerville and Sacrament Valley Railroad; Eric, Arne, Ethan and Chris. The agenda was the same as during May with some field exercises, after fuel consumption, at R Street and then classroom discussion and exam in the Big-4 Conference Room. Although many of the fifty examination questions were SSRR Signal related and not generic, the PSVRR volunteer bravely took the exam and according to the Training Supervisor everyone did well. All SSRR Signal Maintainers are now certified to lead a group as Employee In Charge on the SSRR right of way. Thank you Paul for setting up a make-up session and thank you SSRR and PSVRR volunteers for taking the day off from other fun stuff to have fun doing Part 214 EIC stuff!
A Happy Signal Shop Crew had a good time at the Signal Shop today restoring stuff and putting "Signal Fuel" where it belongs. Signal Shop Worker Karl, Signal Associate Dan and Student Signal Maintainer Bob worked on the PSVRR Griswold #02 unit and the gate arm for #01. Signal Shop Worker Gary worked on Wabco Gate Mechanism No. 05. The Shop had a visitor. Docent Class #52 Graduate Dennis came over to have a look and do a little hands on. He was so interested Signal Engineer Dale gathered up Signal Shop Supervisor Joe, Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul and Signal Shop Worker Karl and interviewed Dennis for the position of Signal Shop Worker. Dennis filled out an application, evaluations were made, an offer of the position was made and accepted and Dennis is now the sixth Signal Shop Worker. Welcome Dennis!! Dennis is the guy in the photo with the white hard hat and blue and red striped shirt. In the photos the round thing with the word Warner on it is the Hold Clear device from Wabco No. 05 after Gary cleaned it up. The other photos show the cam and switches from the Wabco No. 5 also cleaned up by Gary. It was a Fun Day in the Signal Shop! Thanks to everyone for making it that way....
Your webmaster visited this museum and toured the Burlington (Pioneer) Zephyr. Upon mentioning that I am a docent at the California State RR Museum, the docent there told me to climb on over the plexiglass barrier and go into the engine compartment and the cab if I wanted to. Tough decision... More pictures with descriptions. Volunteerism with benefits!!
Employee In Charge, Signal Maintainer Marc, lead his crew on a Fun Signal Maintaining Day today as the crew consisting of Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul, Senior Signal Worker Bill and Student Signal Maintainer Brenton implemented the Monthly Inspections of Q Street, R Street, Broadway and Front Street. At the Q and R Street complex the crew, besides doing the inspections and tests, cleaned up some graffiti on City of Sacramento property. See the photos of Paul cleaning the graffiti off the sign and drinking fountain. Both Q and R Street systems passed inspection with no noted problems. Brenton continued to get some intensive training today including the "Signal Maintainer Al" procedure for adding distilled water to batteries. Signal Radio Department Supervisor (and Signal Maintainer) Al was not on the crew today. Today was an Operation Day with Excursion Trains in operation. Instead of badgering the Operations Crew with Exclusive Track Occupancy On-Track Safety method he chose "Group Not Fouling Track" as the method and sent Lone Workers when the Warning System Tests were implemented. It is good to experience all the various methods of On-Track Safety so when they need to use a particular method the crew will have practiced it and know how to remain safe when on the right of way. Way to go Marc and Good Job Crew!!!
The Signal Shop Crew met the Signal Maintaining Crew at the Signal Shop and had a combined Briefing. The Signal Shop Crew working today was Student Signal Maintainer Bob, Signal Shop Worker Jim and Signal Associate Gary. Those are the guys in the photos. Of course Signal Shop Supervisor Joe was there too darting around helping find this and that and making sure everyone saw his photo poster. These guys are really getting a lot accomplished. Come on over to their Shop and have a look.
The Signal Department held its annual (well, almost annual) BBQ today. A lot of the members of our newly expanded Department braved the high winds (only blew the fire out a couple of times and all wind-blown hats were recovered) and enjoyed the great food. We munched on hamburgers (several different kinds of meat and buns) and all KINDS of chips and dip. Waved at the SSRR trains as they rolled by. I'm sure the passengers wondered who on earth we were... And we were: Marc, Bill, Al, Jim, Cheryl, Linda, Bob, Karl, Bill, Barbara, Dave, Jeff, Joe and Dale.
The Signal Shop is getting in a few work days now that the weather has been cooperating. Today was the seventeenth Signal Shop Work Day in 2012. Crew members working today were Signal Shop Supervisor Joe, Signal Shop Workers Jim and Scott, Student Signal Maintainer Bob and Signal Associates Dan and Gary. As the days become warmer the Shop Days will become shorter ............... We can't let perspiration get on our beautiful restored equipment can we? Stay cool crew!!
The Signal Department Annual Part 214 EIC Training took place today. Including the Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor, Paul (1), there were eight attendees. Besides Paul (1) attendees were: Signal Maintainers Jim (1) and Al [Also Signal Radio Department Supervisor], Dale [Also Signal Maintenance Department Supervisor], Dale [Also Signal Engineer], Senior Signal Worker Bill, Student Signal Maintainer Brenton and Signal Photographer Jeff. The crew members met at R Street Grade Crossing and enjoyed some coffee and fuel while Paul (1) provided the Briefing and then some great verbal Part 214 lessons. The crew then learned to measure the length of their stride and then proceeded to step off our 440 foot Part 214 minimum Non-Working Area Limits. After all the field activities the crew moved to the Stanford Gallery where some additional training took place and then the examination was taken. Paul (1) was please to report to the Signal Engineer that all crew members taking the examination passed it!! HooRay!! A make up session is being set up for those crew members that could not attend. it will probably be in mid to late June. Contact Paul (1) if you would like to attend the make up session.
Annual Signal Department Part 214 EIC Training and associated examination is this Saturday beginning at 9:00 AM. All crew members participating are requested to gather at the R Street Grade Crossing prior to 9:00 AM for coffee and fuel. Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor, Paul, will provide the Briefing and the training will begin. Please bring your orange cones and red flags. Personal Protection Equipment is required (Hardhat and Vest). See you there!!
During the Manager of Railroad Operations (Dick) Advisory Committee Meeting this evening the Director of Railroad Operations (Alan) announced that for the near future that he would assume the position of Acting Manager of Track Programs (See New News April 16th). In addition he will also be taking over the position of Manager of Maintenance of Way and will be taking the project leadership roll on the project to install the new connecting track to the new Union Pacific Main Line. Have Fun Alan!!!
A Signal Crew of four implemented the Monthly and Quarterly Inspections at Capitol Mall and Sutterville Road today. The crew consisted of Al (EIC), Dave and Randy with the Signal Engineer leering over their shoulders. Both crossings passed the inspections. It was noted, and the Tower Bridge Bridge Tender notified, that the railroad annunciation sign on the west side of the Tower bridge was not operating. Good Job Crew!!
A large Signal Crew consisting of Three Signal Maintainers: Dave (EIC), Jim (1) & Marc; one Senior Signal Worker: Bill (1), two student Signal Maintainers Bob & Brenton and the Signal Engineer tagging along implemented the Monthly and quarterly inspections at Q Street, R Street, Broadway and Front Street today while Excursion Trains were in operation. Two separate Working Limits were set up with Exclusive Track Occupancy using flags and cones. The Trainmaster set up two separate Train Orders for the two Working Limits. All crossing systems passed all inspections. Thanks Crew!!
The weather stayed dry and the Signal Shop Crew worked today. The Signal Shop Supervisor was on layoff so the Signal Engineer opened the doors and provided the Briefing. Signal Crew working this day were: Bob, Jim (2), Bill, Gary and Karl. The Griswold Gate Mechanism was given some more loving care by Bob and Karl. Additional inventory was made Jim (2). While Gary reviewed drawings as part of his training and Bill and Dale checked out the local MOW intranet to see of a net work switch could be inserted into the network cable servicing the MOW Office Container.
A Signal Crew (Dave, Paul, Brenton an Karl) repaired a bond wire on the South Approach to Front Street this morning. It was spotted during a previous inspection. Front Street system was removed from service for an hour (10:39 AM to 11:39 AM) while the repair was made. The bond wire is in the area of a sink hole that causes the track to move during train operation causing bond wires in that area to fail often. Good work crew! The photo is EIC Paul providing the Safety Briefing for the crew as some of the Signal Shop Crew listen in.
The Engineering and Training Supervisor and the Signal Engineer have posted the this years Annual Part 214 EIC Training Materials on the Signal Server today. The training and associated examination are scheduled for Saturday morning, May 5th. The training is mandatory for Signal Maintainers. Any Signal Department Crew Member may participate and are welcome. Coffee and "Fuel" served!
It has been almost three weeks since we have been able to have a Signal Shop Work Day because of the wet weather we had on the last two Thursdays. This Thursday is predicted to be dry so Signal Shop Day is ON!! As usual the doors will open about 9:00 AM. What will not be usual is the door opener. It will be the Signal Enginerr instead of the Signal Shop Supervisor Joe. Joe has some long planned activities to do and will be on layoff. So.. If you are ready to wrench a wrench, wire some wire, clean something, inventory something or test something Signal plan to be at the Signal Shop on Thursday. See You There??!
The Manager of Track Programs, John who the Signal Engineer reports to, is stepping down from that position at the end of April. In today’s MOW Weekly Update John wrote: “This is a hard decision but my life is going to take me out of the area in the near future so I will not be able to perform management duties.” He is leaving his eight to five employment, here in Sacramento, in favor of a five to eight position operating his family’s farming operation near Reedley, California. John will continue to be active in the SSRR and other Museum activities when he has the opportunity to leave the farm. Let’s hope that there will be many opportunities. There has been no announcement by the Director of Railroad Operations who will be John’s replacement. Have fun in the sun with all those Nectarines, Peaches and Grapes John!!!
Signal Associate Jim (3) and the Signal Engineer have cancelled the inventory today, at the Signal Shop, of several cartons of signal parts and equipment recently donated. The reason: Same as Signal shop work day. It is just too darn wet in the shop building. The inventory will be rescheduled.
Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor, Paul, reminds us that Annual Signal Department Part 214 EIC Training and Examination is coming up fast. The training and Examination are scheduled to take place on Saturday morning, May 5th. All Signal Maintainers are required to attend the training and pass the examination to stay certified. Any other Signal Crew Members may audit the training and if brave enough take the examination for fun. If you plan to be part of the activities let Supervisor Paul know by email now email@example.com. Please sign up no later than April 23rd. Supervisor Paul expects to have the pre-training material posted to the Signal Server early next week.
Signal Shop Supervisor Joe has cancelled Signal Shop work day today due to rain. The roof of the shop building has serious leaking problems which may create an unsafe working environment so Joe has decide not to work. Next scheduled work day is Thursday, April 19th. Call time: 9:00 AM
The Signal Engineer announced today that the Manager Of Track Programs has approved the Applications of three new Signal Department Crew Members. The Signal Shop, Supervised by Supervisor Joe, has two new Signal Shop Workers; Michael and Scott. The Signal Department also has a new Webmaster, Signal Web Master Bill, who will report to the Signal Engineer. Watch for more detailed announcements coming to your email in box soon! Welcome aboard new Crew!!
APRIL 7, 2012
THE HARVEY HOUSE RESTAURANT IS OPEN
The new Harvey House Restaurant, based on the late 19th and early 20th Century restaurants with that name that were associated with the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway (ATSF), has opened for business in Old Sacramento. It is located at 900 2nd Street and is directly across the Street (South) of the Main Entrance to the California State Railroad Museum. To get there from the Museum front entrance: Walk over to the corner of I Street and 2nd Street. Go South on 2nd Street, crossing I Street. Continue walking south on 2nd Street for about fifty feet and turn west at the first opening. Go down the stairs and look south. There you will see the entrance. There is a web site: Harvey House . There is a menu on the web site and based on what is shown Signal Radio Department Supervisor (Signal Maintainer, Trainmaster, Conductor, Locomotive Engineer, Fireman, MOW Equipment Operator, Vegetation Spray Applicator) Al is going to be very pleased. The Web Master is going there as soon as possible.
APRIL 6, 2012
SUPERVISORS INTERVIEW THREE POTENTIAL CREW MEMBERS
The Signal Engineer and Supervisors Al and Paul (1) interviewed three potential crew members today. Look for two additional Signal Shop Workers and a Signal Web Master in the near future as three more volunteers will enjoy the fun stuff being a Signal Department Crew Member!!
APRIL 5, 2012
SIGNAL SHOP WORK DAY CANCELLED TODAY
There will be no Signal Shop Work Day today. The reasons are too numerous to mention.......... Just one of those days...
INSTRUMENT CABINET/HOUSE INVENTORY STARTED
Photo of Jim (2) by Dave at Broadway
The Signal Maintenance Department and the Signal Shop Department have a joint project to inventory all the parts and pieces of each of the Grade Crossing Warning System Instrument Cabinets and Houses. Signal Maintenance Supervisor Dave and Signal Shop Worker Jim (2) started the inventory today. Photos and notes will be taken and noted of each cabinet and house and all the major parts listed. Ultimately an inventory document with part numbers and photos is hoped to be developed. Signal Maintainers will use the document to order parts they may require to make a repair and Shop Workers will use the document to make sure their inventory has the parts on hand. Great Idea and Great Teamwork!
FIRST ANNUAL SIGNAL SHOP OPEN HOUSE -
Due to unforeseen difficulties in setting up an Open House at the Signal Shop, scheduled for April 14th, Signal Shop Supervisor Joe has announced a postponement until a later, yet to, be announced, date.
MOW IS DONATED TWO MOTOR "CARTS"
A couple of Signal Maintainers who operated a Signal Construction firm together in Sacramento, have decided to retire and simply consult. They have donated several railroad plug in relays and other signal equipment to the Signal Department and two Motor "Carts" to the Maintenance Of Way Department. They are operational and in very good shape. MOW plans to add some lights and perhaps add different seating. Perhaps they need to add a governor on the engine. Neat!!
Mile Post 11.2 to MP 13.2
A MOW Weeds and Seeds team went south today to spray weeds. Captain Mikey, the Weeds and Seeds Supervisor, was the EIC. He was supported by Motor Car Operator/Water Handlers Myrletta (Car Department), Heather (MOW) and Dale (Signal Department) and Applicator Randy (signal Department). A previous crew had sprayed from ~ MP 13.2 to MP 15.1. Today, the crew sprayed from ~ MP 11.2 to 13.2. The above photos show the area sprayed today. As one can easily see Mother Nature has her way with taking over territory. Mother Nature can also provide a beautiful landscape to view. It was Beautiful! Don't ever miss an opportunity to motor car this area.......
MARCH 31, 2012
FIRST TRAIN OF THE YEAR LEFT THE STATION
Even though there was plenty of rain today there were plenty of passengers riding the SSRR Excursion Trains on the first day of the 2012 season. There were several Signal Crew Members, who are also on the Operations Crew, working on the operations crew today. See if you can identify them in the photos to the left.
MOW PICNIC INSIDE DUE TO RAIN
The MOW Picnic schedule for today at Hood (~ Mile Post 15.1) had to move inside due to rain today. This is not the first time the picnic was move indoors due to rainy weather, so the movers end shakers knew what to do. Tri-Tip by Chef Leonard was on the menu and it Was Good!! Several of the Manger of Track Program's videos were shown and, of course, the Management Team pontificated (Well not really. They're actually pretty earthy guys...). It was fun!! Thanks to everyone that made it happen!!!!
MARCH 29, 2012
SIGNAL SHOP WORK DAY 2012-10
An abbreviated Signal Shop Crew was active today. Student Signal Maintainer Bob was refurbishing a gong, Signal Shop Worker Jim (2) was salvaging parts from some discarded equipment, SSRR Director of Railroad Operations Alan was restoring a semaphore and Signal Shop Supervisor and Signal Engineer Dale when shopping for Signal Shop Personnel Personal Protective Equipment. Good Job Crew!!!
MARCH 26, 2012
FIRST TRAIN OF 2012 LESS THEN ONE WEEK AWAY!
The First Train of the year is upon already! Next Saturday, March 31st is the day we begin the 2012 Operating Season. The crews have been selected and, as usual, there are several Signal Crew members, who are also on the Operations Crew, that have been selected for first day operations. If you can make it, come to Old Sacramento and take a ride on one of our first trains of the year.
MARCH 24, 2012
THE DOCENT JOB FAIR WAS TODAY
The Docent Job Fair was well attended today. There might have been as many Department Representatives as there was new Docents.... The Signal Department was well represented by the Signal Radio Department Supervisor and the Signal Engineer. The function was supposed to start at 2:30 PM. The Signal crew started setting up their tables about 2:15 PM and the new Docents were already looking around. The Signal crew met with several new Docents, handed out five applications for Signal Shop Worker and two applications for Signal Worker. A lot of nice folks there today.. We're hoping they all find few things to do around the Museum.
THE SIGNAL SCHEDULER HAS MADE THE APRIL INSPECTION ASSIGNMENTS
Signal Scheduler Jim has made the Inspection assignments for April as follows:
Saturday, April 21st:
Q Street, R Street, Broadway and Front Street
Signal Maintenance Supervisor Dave [EIC]
Signal Maintainers Jim and Marc
Senior Signal Worker Bill
Student Signal Maintainers Bob and Brenton
Wednesday, April 25th:
Capitol Mall and Sutterville Road
Signal Maintainers Al [EIC], Dave and Jim
Signal Worker Randy
Big Thanks to Jim!!!!
Have Fun out there Crews and Be Safe!
MARCH 23, 2012
CURRENT SACRAMENTO WEATHER POSTED IN "CALENDAR"
The acting Web Master has added current and predicted next day Sacramento weather information on the "Calendar" page of this web site. www.weather.com offers this service at no cost, with certain restrictions about what types of advertisements can be placed near it, and we registered our site with them to do so. The information provided includes current temperature and conditions, today's outlook, tomorrow's outlook and links to various other information such as 10 day predictions and other city's weather data. The information is in a red box right below the Google Calendar on the "Calendar" page. If your looking at the Calendar it might help you to check out the short term weather predictions. Enjoy..............
DOCENT JOB FAIR TOMORROW
The first 2012 Docent Job Fair is tomorrow, Saturday, at 2:30 PM in the Stanford Gallery. Encourage your Docent friends to attend (It is open to all Docents and Volunteers not just recent Docent Class attendees.). If you would like to help man the Signal Department table please contact the Signal Engineer.
MARCH 22, 2012
SIGNAL SHOP WORK DAY 2012-09
The Signal Shop had a work day today even with Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1) on Layoff. He sent instructions from a far away place and he probably thought he was still in charge but it didn't happen that way. Due to all kinds of interesting reasons only one Signal Shop Worker, Karl, and Student Signal Maintainer, Bob, worked today along with Signal Radio Department Supervisor Al who hung around in the absence of Joe (1) also present. No rain. Mild temps. It was a great day to work in our well ventilated Signal Shop and Karl and Al had a good time. See you all next week - weather allowing....... Signal Shop Work Day 2012-10 is scheduled for next Thursday, March 29th with doors opening at 9:00 AM.
BRIEFINGS AND BULLETINS POSTED IN "THE OFFICE"
The Web Master (Temporary), Signal Engineer Dale, has posted the Signal Department Briefings and Bulletins in "The Office" on this web site. The Briefings and Bulletins were started in 2009. For an explanation of why we have Briefings and Bulletins review Briefing 2009-001. You no longer have to visit the Signal Server to review the Briefings and Bulletins, however, they will continue to be available there as well.
MARCH 21, 2012
DOCENT JOB FAIR POSTERS POSTED
The first Docent Job Fair of 2012 is scheduled for this Saturday the 24th at 2:30 PM in the Stanford Gallery. In an attempt to increase the interest of Docents and Volunteers and encourage them to participate the Signal Engineer posted some Recruiting Posters in the All Aboard Area, the office area above the All Aboard Area and, if all went well, in the Museum Information Booth. To view the posters click HERE and HERE. Want to help with the recruiting? Contact the Signal Engineer.
MARCH 20, 2012
MONTHLY INSPECTIONS COMPLETED FOR MARCH
A Signal Crew consisting of Signal Maintainer Marc as a Lone Worker conducted the Monthly Inspection and Tests of the Front Street Warning System today. The system passed with no problems noted. The Signal Crew usually consist of two or more crew members but the opportunity exists for Signal Maintainers to implement Inspections and Tests as Lone Workers. A Lone Worker generally uses Individual Train Detection (ITD) as the On-Track Safety procedure, which is what Marc used today. Thanks Marc!
MARCH 19, 2012
SIGNAL PART 214 EIC TRAINING IS COMING SOON
The Annual Signal Department Part 214 EIC Training and Examination is scheduled for Saturday, May 5th. Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor, Paul, is currently working on the Training modules. If there is something you believe should be discussed or developed as a Training Module let Paul know. If you would like to participate by being a Module presenter you are welcome to and encouraged to. All Signal Maintainers are required to attend the training and pass the examination to stay certified. Other crew members are also required to attend the training. If you are not sure if you are one of those crew members check your Position Description or contact Paul or the Signal Engineer.
MARCH 18, 2012
DOCENT JOB FAIR NEXT SATURDAY
The newest Docent Class will soon graduate and will be looking for the best fit for them in and around the Museum. To help facilitate that search the Museum sets up a Docent Job Fair where each department or area in the Museum or on the Railroad is represented. The Signal Department will have a table set up with some information to help the Docents make a decision. The Docent Job Fair will be begin at 2:30 PM on Saturday, March 24th and will be held in the Stanford Gallery. If you would like to help out please do. Contact the Signal Engineer for more information on how you can help out.
MARCH 16, 2012
DOWN LOADS PAGE UPDATED
The Down Loads Page, which is accessible by clicking on the gray button on the left of this page titled "DOWN LOADS" has been updated. The list of materials that are available for down load is larger and the button titled "GO TO SIGNAL DOCUMENTS" no longer takes you to the Mirra Machine. It now takes you to the Signal Server. You no longer need to remember the long address to get your browser to take you to the Signal Server. Instead just go to www.ssrrsignal.com, which is much easier to remember, click on a couple of buttons and your at the Signal Server front door. of course, you'll still need a Username and Password to open the door.
DO YOU WANT A FREE LUNCH?
The first Signal Volunteer that sends the Webmaster an email note with the secret word between Noon and 2:00 PM on Saturday, March 17, 2012 will receive a Burger, Frys and Beverage at Willies on 16th Street in Sacramento courtesy of the Signal Engineer. The secret word is located on this web site some where......
MARCH 14, 2012
SIGNAL SHOP WORK DAY 2012-09 - POSTPONED
Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1) has cancelled work in the Signal Shop tomorrow, March 15th, due to rain and not much of a roof left on the building the shop is within. The Work Day will be postponed to next Thursday, March 22nd. The Signal Shop Supervisor will be on Layoff that day and Signal Radio Department Supervisor Al will be substituting and unlocking the doors.
SSRR CIRCULARS SENT TO SIGNAL CREW BY THE SIGNAL ENGINEER
Because there is the possibility that some Signal Crew Members are not on the SSRR Crew Email Mailing List they did not receive SSRR Circular notices or the Circulars. If you are a Signal Department Crew Member you should be on the SSRR Crew Mailing list. Follow the instructions in the Signal Engineers email and request to be added to the SSRR Mailing List. Not only will you receive timely Circular notices, you will receive all notices and announcements distributed in that manner.
MARCH 13, 2012
MONTHLY INSPECTION AT FRONT STREET POSTPONED
The Monthly Inspection of Front Street, scheduled for today and which was to be implemented by Signal Maintainer Marc, has been postponed due to rain. Signal Scheduler Jim will reschedule. Thanks for trying Marc. Looks like a week more of the wet stuff in the forecast for Front Street.
MARCH 12, 2012
MARCH MONTHLY INSPECTIONS BEGUN
Two Signal Crews had a pretty good outing today completing all the assigned inspections. (Thanks Jim (1) for doing that!) Crew 1 with Al as EIC and with Jim (1) and Joe (1) on the crew implemented the inspections at Sutterville Road and Capitol Mall. Crew 2 with Dave as EIC and Bob on the crew implemented the inspections at Q Street, R Street and Broadway. All crossing systems passed inspections. There was a minor glitch at Capitol Mall. Truck #8, being used by Crew 1 today, would not start when the crew was ready to leave. A low battery was the problem which was remedied by a battery jump from the Signal Engineers pickup truck. Front Street Monthly Inspection is scheduled for March 13th, weather permitting.
MARCH 11, 2012
LAST TWO RULES TRAINING CLASSES COMING UP SOON
The second and third sessions of the SSRR Operating and Safety Rules Training and Examination will soon be here. The second session will be held Wednesday evening, March 28th beginning at 6:00 PM. The third session is now scheduled for April 7th beginning at 1:00 PM. Both sessions will be in the Stanford Gallery. All Signal Maintainers must attend the training and pass the examination to stay certified.
CIRCULAR V IS RELEASED BY THE MORRO - TURNTABLE IS OPERATIONAL
The Manager of Railroad Operations (MORRO), Dick, has released Circular V titled "turntable". Circular V annuals Circular S and announces that the Turntable has been repaired and is again operational. Good Job Train Shop Crew!!!
MARCH 10, 2012
NEW RELAY PLUG-IN RELAY TEST FIXTURE DEVELOPED BY JOE (2)
The Signal Shop has a new tool! Signal Worker Joe (2) has developed a fixture for use in repairing and testing old style Wabco Plug-In Relays. Take a look. No more messing with little jumpers with little clip-on connectors! Thanks again Joe (2)!!!
MARCH 9, 2012
SUTTERVILLE ROAD REPAIRED AND READY FOR SERVICE
[Article by Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul (1)]
Signal Supervisors Dave and Paul
and Signal Maintainer Jim gathered at the Shops at 9:00 to prepare for the
re-installation of the repaired GPR Shelf Relay at Sutterville crossing. A quick
check, mainly for personal familiarization purposes, was done on the DN-11 Heavy
Duty contact relay. A simply 4 year test was done to determine Pull up and Drop
out voltages (Note Below). It was noted this particular relay was first tested
Once in the field Jim quickly established a work area and re-installed the relay. Several circuit checks were done, first to be sure the wires were correctly attached and the flashing lights did indeed turn on, then to see the lights did flash due to the FR working correctly and lastly that the entire crossing circuit worked by shunt test which dropped the XR which dropped the GPR which made the FR operate. All passed fine (fail safe is a wonderful thing).
Then some training was conducted by Paul with Jim to ascertain where to write down the monthly test results from the monthly checks of the Safetran GCP used at Sutterville. It was determined that the standard paper form used does not lend itself to the exact tests being done. There is some confusion as to where to write down the results for specific tests since there is no location on the form for those tests. A new form must be developed.
Note: The GPR relay was removed by the Signal Crew from the Sutterville Road system during Monthly Inspections. See February 17, 2012 article below. The relay was subsequently repaired by Signal Shop Worker, Joe (2). Included with the repair was a full description of the work done and a detailed and comprehensive test report. It was like new!!! Thanks Joe (2)!!
MARCH 8, 2012
SIGNAL SHOP WORK DAY - 2012-08 - !!!ROAD TRIP!!!
The Signal Shop Crew, supported by others, went on a journey to the Central California Traction Company (CCT) in Stockton today to pick up four Griswald Gate Mechanisms donated by them to the CSRM Foundation. These units are destine to be on display in the new Technology Museum or will be placed in service on the SSRR Main Line as it is extended south in the unknown future. Those crew members participating were Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1), Signal Workers Karl, Jim (2) and Joe (2), Signal Associate Dan, Student Signal Maintainer Bob, Signal Radio Department Supervisor Al, Signal Maintenance Department Supervisor Dave, Signal Engineer Dale and the Director of the Railroad Alan. Thanks to Director, Alan, the Signal Shop is collecting sufficient old signal and warning system equipment to keep them busy restoring for quite awhile. It was a long day and a productive day. The Signal Department is very thankful that the CCT donated this old but still operational equipment to it. Thanks CCCT!!!!
MARCH 2, 2012
THE JANUARY SIGNAL DEPARTMENT MONTHLY REPORT IS POSTED
The Signal Engineer has posted the January Signal Department Monthly Report to the Signal Server. This is the first report developed by the Signal Engineer with the four Department Supervisors Al (D1461), Dave (D1421), Joe (D1431) and Paul (D1411). The new report format is in six sections. The first section is a summary of the other five. The other five sections are developed by department including a section for the non-existing Signal Administration Department (D1441), which is planned to be developed in the distant future. Log on to the Signal Server and select the folder titled; "2012 - Monthly Reports". If you have any comments or suggestions about the report please do so by contacting your supervisor or the Signal Engineer.
FEBRUARY 27, 2012
SIGNAL ENGINEERING TAKES ON PROJECT - WHERE ARE THE M.P.s?
The SSRR uses Mile Post (MP) numbers to identify locations along the right of way for purposes of setting up On-Track Safety Working Limits. The Signal Department developed a track schematic drawing indicating where various land marks are and referencing the MP numbers of those land marks for use in setting up On-Track Safety. The Signal Engineer recently discovered that the MP numbers used to develop the track schematic were from a Maintenance Of Way (MOW) document no longer in use. The new MP numbering system which was developed by MOW several years ago placed metal tags on cross ties every tenth of a mile. It has now been agreed that MOW, Signals and the Operations Department will use the MOW tag system to determine On-Track Safety locations. This agreement, then, requires the Signal Department Track Schematic to be revised. A Signal Engineering Department staff group has volunteered to do the necessary field work and revise the drawing. Left to right in the above photos are the members of the group: Signal Associate Dan, Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul (1) and Signal CAD Drafter Paul (2) [Coordinator of the group]. Thank You Engineering Group!!
FEBRUARY 24, 2012
CIRCULARS T AND U RELEASED BY THE MORRO
The Manager or Railroad Operations (MORRO) has released Circular T and Circular U. Circular T, titled "grade Crossing Incident Reports", establishes the rule that "near miss" grade crossing incidents must be reported by train operations crews. Circular U, titled "Temporary Grade Crossing Warning Signs", informs that small and temporary single sided signs will be placed at J, K and L Street grade crossings during each "operating day".
FEBRUARY 23, 2012 (Back to Top)
SIGNAL SHOP DAY 2012-07
A Signal Shop Crew consisting of Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1), Dan, Jim (2), Joe (2) and Bob had a fun time at the Signal Shop this day. Signal Worker Jim (2) completed the MSDS Binder which includes cataloging and labeling all Signal Shop chemicals and assembling all the Material Handling Data Sheets (MHDS) for those chemicals into one place (A binder). Signal Worker Joe (2) continued to work on the inventory of various relays and the setting up of a relay testing plan so that the Signal Department has known working spare relays on hand. Signal Associate Dan and Student Signal Maintainer Bob continued to work on the first PSVRR Griswald Gate Mechanism, which is a joint restoration project with the PSVRR. Signal Shop Supervisor Joe? Well, he was helping everyone, or course! Way to Go Crew!!
FEBRUARY 17, 2012
MONTHLY INSPECTIONS FOR FEBRUARY COMPLETED TODAY
Two Signal Crews completed the Monthly Inspections today. The first crew with Maintenance Supervisor, Dave, as EIC and Jim (1) and a guest, Brenton implemented the inspections at Broadway, Front Street and Sutterville Road. Broadway and Front Street passed inspection. The motion sensor at Front Street was re-calibrated. At Sutterville Road the GPR was removed for service and repair. It will be taken to the Signal Shop so that Shop crew can make the repair. The second crew with Engineering and Training Supervisor, Paul (1), as EIC and Bob and Joe (1) implemented the inspections at Capitol Mall, Q Street and R Street. All passed inspection.
FEBRUARY 9, 2012
BOND WIRE REPLACEMENT PROJECT
[Article by Signal Engineering and Training Supervisor Paul (1)]
10 Signal Department crew members, Paul, Dave,
Little Joe, Dale, Joe, Jim, Karl, Bob and Jeff participated in the replacement
of the 17 vandalized and stolen Bond wires on the North Approach of the
Sutterville Crossing, under the leadership and forward thinking of Supervisor
Dave. The bond wires were noticed missing early in 2011.
The crew gathered early in the Shop for fuel and briefing. Dave organized the use of the motor cars while Joe loaded up the big MOW truck with all the gear. Paul was EIC. The plan was to use the motor cars to transport the crew and the truck for the equipment. All met at the turntable behind the CSRM so the crew who wanted to ride the rails could transfer to the Motor cars. It was a fun ride for those who had not ridden them before. The truck met the motor cars on the South side of Sutterville, the equipment transferred and then the motor cars and crew traveled North about 700 feet to begin the bond replacement work.
First task was to remove the remaining pieces of the Bond wire welds which was done with hammer and chisel and any remaining was ground off providing a smooth finish for the new Bond. Then came preparing the Cadweld molds to hold the new wires on the rail joints. Once these were adjusted and cleaned up a wire was put on position, the molds were clamped over the rails at the joint, black powder correctly placed in the ignition chamber and finally a spark gun was used to ignite the charge to create the heat to firmly attach the bond wire. Quite a show of fireworks.
The crew did a thorough job of preparation which was demonstrated by the low failure rate of the Cadwelding done. Only two locations had to have a second reshoot. A very good day indeed.
All had a good time, lunch was eaten at the Sutterville crossing and all had a chance to make sparks.
SIGNAL DEPARTMENT TIME CODES REVISED
The Signal Engineer has posted the second Bulletin for 2012. Is is Bulletin No. 2012-002 titled "New And Revised Time Codes For 2012". For many years we have been required to report our volunteer hours worked away from the property and in three basic Time Code categories. When we added the Radio Section and then the Signal Shop we added two additional Time Code categories. We have added two more for 2012. Be sure to check out the Bulletin so you can be ready when your monthly extra volunteer hours are requested.
JANUARY 29, 2012
FIRST 2012 SIGNAL DEPARTMENT BULLETIN AND BRIEFING POSTED
The Signal Engineer has posted the first Signal Department Bulletin and Briefing of 2012. Bulletin No. 2012-001, titled: "Safety Bulletin - FRA Warns of Coveralls Hazard" and Briefing No. 2012-001, titled: "Don't Be a Drag - Cut Your Loops". They both cover hammer loops on coveralls and work pants that the FRA suggests are a safety hazard. You can also receive a prize for removing yours. Check out the Briefing and find out how!
JANUARY 25, 2012
SIGNAL SHOP CREW
PICKS UP DONATED SIGNAL EQUIPMENT
[Article by Signal Shop Supervisor Joe (1)]
Story by Signal Shop Supervisor Joe:
The day began in the typical Signal Department manner (liquid and solid Signal Department "fuel") and what I will call a Mini Job Briefing.
We were a little short staffed. (I don't mean because Bob and I were there either).
Today’s crew consisted of Signal Maintenance Supervisor Dave, Student Signal Maintainer Bob and yours truly Signal Shop Supervisor Joe.
Since it was determined that we would not begin our road trip until at least Noon or later, Dave took on the task of making two operable chain saws on a stick out of three not so operable ones. When completed he gave us his five seconds or sixteen revolutions guarantee, whichever is less, which remained in force until five minutes ago. Bob took on the task of reassembling the mechanical part of the Griswald gate mechanism he and other shop crew members are restoring. That task being complete the wiring will begin very soon. YEA!!!!!!!!! Joe spent the morning trying to prepare two trucks for the road trip to Roseville later in the day. After a few "false" starts and a change of vehicles the end result was two trucks going to Roseville (Not exactly the ones reserved). This is not a complaint. There was a ton of different things going on with the Restoration Shop folks, MOW, Al's sandbox (Behind the Museum) and the Signal Shop. Between all of us we sorted things out and everyone was able to complete the jobs at hand.
11:30 seemed to be a great time for Beans so that is exactly what we did. We went to Beans at Sekou’s BBQ. The destination was definitely "Carnivore Al" capable since their "regular" hamburger comes in at one pound and their next burger is two pounds. Both are accompanied by enough fries to clog all of your arteries.
After a great meal (not the burgers) we met up with the Director of Railroad Operations Alan and departed for the UP Roseville Rail Yard. Upon arrival, Alan did his magic and with the help of a capable UP crew member and fork lift driver we loaded the trucks with lots of new toys (some would say job security) for the Signal Shop. My next article will describe exactly what we brought back, hopefully with pictures. Naturally, my camera was home on the kitchen table today, just where I put it so I wouldn’t forget it.
All in all a very hectic day with a lot accomplished. Everyone went home tired, dirty, safe and with a good helping of job satisfaction.
Joe - Signal Shop Supervisor
PS - We had several "rolling" job briefings that are not listed above.PPS – Signal Accounting and Assets Clerk, Linda, supplied the “Fuel”.
JANUARY 22, 2012
JANUARY MONTHLY INSPECTIONS CONCLUDED TODAY (IN THE RAIN)
A four man Signal Crew completed the Monthly and Quarterly Inspections of Broadway, Front Street and Sutterville Road this morning as water from the sky felll upon them. Crew members were Dave [EIC], Jim, Marc and Bob. Battery terminals were also cleaned and lube. Scheduled removal of vegetation debris at Sutterville Road was cancelled. Thank you crew!! We hope you didn't get too wet!!!
JANUARY 18, 2012
SECOND GENERAL MEETING OF 2012 HELD THIS EVENING
The second 2012 Annual General Meeting (See January 7th New news) was held this evening. There were approximately 35 crew members in attendance including 13 presenters. The agenda was the same as the first meeting. No surprises.......
JANUARY 15, 2012
FEBRUARY INSPECTIONS TO BE SCHEDULED
Signal Scheduler, Jim, informs the Webmaster
that all February inspections are monthlies and that the Signal Maintenance
Supervisor, Dave, has requested a separate day in
February to replace the missing bond wires at Sutterville Road.
Jim further advises that if enough folks are available and feeling energetic, they should be able to do all the crossings in one day, maybe using a couple of crews.
Regarding the Sutterville bond wire replacement; Jim would like to know which of the Signal Shop Workers and Signal Associates are interested, available and have completed Part. 214 training.
He has requested anyone interested in working provide their availability no later than January 22nd.
Sign up for the Signal Crew and have some fun!
JANUARY 15, 2012
POLAR EXPRESS THANK YOU RECEPTION
A reception was provided this evening in the CSRM Round House by the CSRM Foundation for all crew members, docents and others that helped put on the Polar Express show. Refreshments were served and live music was provided. Polar Express Coordinator, Delta, spoke to the crew, providing readings from her "diary" during the first few Polar Express days and then various crew members read aloud letters from Polar Express passengers expressing their thanks and gratitude to all the volunteers and staff. A very nice affair.............
JANUARY 13, 2012
MONTHLY INSPECTIONS COMPLETED AT CAPITOL MALL, Q & R STREETS
A Signal crew consisting of Maintenance Supervisor Dave [EIC], Signal Maintainers Jim and Marc, Student Signal Maintainers Joe, and Bob and Signal Engineer Dale completed the Monthly and Quarterly Inspections of Capitol Mall, Q Street and R Street today. Good training sessions took place for the students. No problems found and all crossings passed inspections. At Q Street, however, the crew found that the cabinet had been vandalized with graffiti and that some good Samaritan had tried to clean it up. The clean up appears to have been done with a chemical not compatible with the aluminum cabinet surface. See photo. Way to go crew!!
JANUARY 12, 2012
BIG TURN OUT FOR SIGNAL SHOP DAY 2012-02
Signal Shop Supervisor, Joe, opened the doors to a large group of crew members today as the second Signal Shop work day of 2012 got underway. Nine crew members participated today. Karl, Bob and Dan continued work on the Griswald Gate Mechanisms. Jim continued work on inventorying various containers of liquid and solid stuff for the MSDS program and labeled them properly. The Joe and Joe team worked on organizing the place while Dave and Bill installed a mobile radio in MOW truck #8. the Signal Engineer was there taking photos and kibitzing as usual. Good Team - Good Crew!!!
JANUARY 11, 2012
FIRST SESSION OF ANNUAL PART 214 TRAINING COMPLETED THIS EVENING
The first of two (second is on January 21st) Annual Roadway Worker Safety Training sessions was presented this evening. The Manager of Track Programs, John, provided the best Part 214 training so fr provided by the organization. This year the training was provided by a video produced and developed by him. It was great!! An exam was then taken by all crew members which was self corrected at the end of the exam. Two other modules were provided: One on harassment and a very well done PowerPoint presentation provided by Wed Team Supervisor, Mike, about the Vegetation Abatement Program. It was a well done program!! Thanks John!!
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING HELD TODAY
The 2012 General Meeting was held today in the CSRM East Theater. The Manager of Railroad Operations, Dick, kicked off the meeting by reminding everyone that this will be our 29th operating season! He then introduced the Director of the Railroad Museum who reviewed some of the major activities of 2011 and some of the challenges that lie ahead in 2012. The Manager of Track Programs, John, provided another of his outstanding Maintenance Of Way recruiting videos including information and crew members from the the Weed Team and the Signal Department. Signal Engineer, Dale, provided an overview PowerPoint presentation on the Signal Department members and the re-organization that occurred in November 2011. Conductor Program Supervisor, Chuck, provided information on that program as well as on a proposed Disaster Preparedness Program that will be set inn place in 2012. Other presenters provided information about Engine service Program, Brakeman Program, Car Attendant Program, Car Department Activities, Ticket Agent Program and the Station Agent Program. Assistant Manager of Railroad Operations, Norm, provided information on new requirements that Conductors be certified as well as changes to the crew briefing process and on red flag testing of all Operation Crew members. Following the meeting the crew proceeded to the turn table for the annual group photo. The year the background locomotives were the 6051 and the 206. At 1:00 PM the First Train of the year pulled way from the Old Sac Station filled with SSRR Crew Members.
JANUARY 6, 2012
2012 SIGNAL DEPARTMENT CALENDAR RELEASED
The 2012 Signal Department Calendar has been released. Signal Shop Day, which was somewhat of a clean up the Shop day in the past, has been replaced by a Signal Shop Open House with a wienie grill! Here is the calendar:
2012 SIGNAL DEPARTMENT CALENDAR
This calendar is
repeated on the 2012 Signal Department Pocket Calendar which will be available
from Signal Administrative Assistant, Cheryl, at the General Meeting on
Saturday, January 7th. Be sure to search her out to obtain your copy of
the Pocket Calendar. Have a Great year!!
2012 CALLOUT NO 2 -
The Signal Maintenance Supervisor, Dave, received another Callout today receiving a call from the Assistant Manager of Railroad Operations, Norm, at 10:25 AM. It seems the gates were in the protection mode (down) at Front Street. Dave called the Signal Engineer for backup and met at Front Street. The EZ reading was found to be 138 which was much higher than yesterday, and a sure signal that something was wrong with the track circuits. The system was taken out of service at 11:10 AM. Subsequent inspection of bond wires in the South Approach found a pulled apart bond wire about 100 feet from the grade crossing in the area of the famous MOW sink hole. This is an area where the tracks are often moving horizontally as well as vertically. Thus bond wire problems are kind of expected. Student Signal Maintainer, Joe, was called out while Dave and Dale made a trip to the Signal Shop for supplies. The bond wire was replaced, the MS2000 Motion Sensor was re-calibrated (New EZ of 103), a warning system test was implemented (passed) and the system was placed in service at 2:56 PM. Good Job Crew!!
JANUARY 5, 2012
FIRST 2012 CALLOUT - GATES DOWN AT FRONT STREET
The Signal Department received it's first Callout of 2012 today! Let's hope it is not a sample to what is in store for the rest of 2012. The Signal Engineer received a call from the Director of Railroad Operations (Who himself was in Fresno) at 4:03 PM today with the information that the Museum Park Ranger was at the "Miller Park" crossing directing traffic because the gates were stuck in the protection position (down). The Signal Engineer, being ill but with full faculties still on board, contacted Signal Maintenance Supervisor, Dave, requesting a response. Dave responded and arrived at the crossing, which was Front Street, approximately 5:00 PM. There had been a false activation as there was no train or no apparent damage to the system. EZ reading was a little high at 107 alerting Dave to a possible track problem (usually a severed bond wire). The system was removed from service. Both approaches and the island were inspected (it was getting dark by then) but no problems were found. The MS2000 Motion Sensor was re-calibrated (EZ reported at 99) and a Warning System Test was made which passed. System was placed back in service at 5:55 PM. Thanks Dave... Now.. Wonder what caused that situation??
SIGNAL SHOP OPENS FOR 2012!
Signal Shop Supervisor, Joe, opened the Signal Shop up for the first time in 2012 today. In attendance were Signal Shop Workers Joe and Jim, Signal Associate Dan and Student Signal Maintainer Bob. Bob and Dan continued working on the P&SVRR Griswald Gate Mechanisms that are being refurbished for their White Rock Road Grade Crossing Warning System. Joe and Joe were working on organizing the Shop and Jim worked on development of a Signal Shop MSDS System. They're off to a great start!
JANUARY 4, 2012
ROADWAY WORKER SAFETY TRAINING COMING SOON
Annual Part 214 Roadway Worker Safety Training will be provided by the Track Programs Department again this year. Training is scheduled for Wednesday, January 11th beginning at 6:00 PM and Saturday, January 21st beginning at 9:00 AM. Both session will be in the Museum's East Theater. All Signal Department personnel that plan to work or go along with any crew working on the right of way must have taken this training prior to doing so. If you have not attended Annual Part 214 Training in the past and this will be your first time please contact the Signal Engineer so that the correct number of handout materials will be available. As always, hope to see you there!!
JANUARY 3, 2012
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING IS THIS SATURDAY
The Twenty-Ninth Operating Season of the SSRR starts off in 2012 with the Annual General Meeting this Saturday, January 7th. The meeting will begin at 9:00 AM in the East Theater of the Museum. Scheduled speakers include the Director of the CSRM and the Executive Director of the CSRMF. Manager of Track Programs, John, is planning to show another of his great videos (That makes it worth while to go just of that) and our own Signal Engineer, Dale, will provide some 2011 highlights. Several other presenters are on the agenda to provide information on the Engine Service, Brakeman, Conductor, Car Attendant, Car Department and Ticket Agent Programs. The "Yer Ahead" presentation will be presented by the Manager of Railroad Operations, Dick, and Assistant Manager of Railroad Operations, Norm. A Crew Photo will be taken at the Turntable Area when the meeting concludes about Noon. The First Train of the Year ride will depart the Old Sac Station about 1:00 PM. A second General Meeting (abbreviated), for those crew members that cann not attend the Saturday meeting, is scheduled for Wednesday evening January 18th starting at 6:00 PM in the East Theater. Hope to see you there!!
JANUARY 1, 2012
!!! HAPPY NEW YEAR !!!
JANUARY INSPECTIONS SCHEDULED
Signal Department Scheduler Dave has scheduled a Monthly and Quarterly Relay Inspection for January on Wednesday, January 13th. Signal personnel assigned are: Jim, Marc, Joe and Bob EIC is Dave. A separate day of work has been scheduled for January 22nd for the Broadway, Front Street and Sutterville Road locations. Signal personnel assigned for this date are: Dave, Jim, Marc, Joe and Bill. EIC is Al. BOTH days will require use of the ever-popular™ lamp washing equipment (better known by some as "Washy Washy").
NOTE: Work on the 22nd will include cleaning and re-lubing the battery terminals at Broadway and Front St. Also, we plan to take the flatbed dump truck and clean up the dry brush pile at Sutterville. The EIC may choose to separate the crew to expedite these tasks.
Please be sure to confirm your assignments - and have a Great Day!!!
FOR 2011 NEW NEWS ARCHIVE CLICK HERE
FOR 2010 NEW NEWS ARCHIVE CLICK HERE
FOR 2009 NEW NEWS ARCHIVE CLICK HERE
FOR 2008 NEW NEWS ARCHIVE CLICK HERE