Search This Blog

Saturday, November 4, 2006

06-11-04 PHOTOS: TUCKAHOE Tower Centennial

Two months ago today was the 100th birthday of TUCKAHOE tower in Tuckahoe, NJ. This tower was built by the reading railroad in 1906 and was closed by NJ DoT in 1983. For almost 20 years it stood vacant and 1998 it was a real handyman's dream.

However, CMSL Tony was operating his fleet of 1950's Budd RDC cars only 10 miles down the track and his had his sights on bigger and better things. Part of this was the restoration of the old Tuckahoe station for a second RDC service between there and Richland, NJ and the adjacent TUCKAHOE was given some restoration as well.

This year was the 100th anniversary of the tower, and Tony, not wanting to pass up an excuse to grandstand celebrate not only bought a cake, not only rounded up surviving PRSL employees from local retirement facilities buy managed to bully Conrail to allow him to run two of his RDC's under their own power to Richland and back.

Now usually the Lehigh Valley F Units or PRR #7000 are the star of the show with the RDC acting as a glorified cab car, but for this birthday they would run to Richland on their own, the first time in 23 years.

Anyway you can find my photos from this special event at:

And here are some teasers for all you ppl who hate to click on things.
Oh, if you want to compare my new pics of the tower with my 1998 pics they can be found here:

LV 528 sure looks pretty, but she and PRR 7000 had to step aside for the RDC's.

The guest of honour on her 100th birthday. That was only slightly younger than the median age of the railfans in attendance :-D

I snuck into the lower level when people weren't looking and took some pics of the mechanical interlocking machine. The grid of bars are what does the interlocking and the pipes connect to the levers to throw remote switches and facing point locks.

In the lever room the tower is pretty much the way it was in 1983. The CMSL squad has done a real nice job fixing things up as compared with 1998.

The interlocking machine is a 28-lever frame with about 22 levers present. While the junction used to have a fully functional wye, sidings and two main tracks coming in from the north, by 1983 it was reduced to only two active switches.

The levers are colour-coded as follows. Black = switch, blue = facing point lock, yellow = signal and white = spare.

Of course rods and levers can't change electric signals so these little relay boxes convert the mechanical logic into electrical logic.

Tony's flare for the dramatic demanded that the two working Budd cars, M-410 and M-407, re-enact the traditional train combining that used to take place here b/t Cape May and Ocean City trains. Here is M-410 pretending to be a steam locomotive as it positions itself.

Here's the M-410 playing its role as the Cape May train.

A spike of railfans boards the M-407 playing the Ocean City car.

 This railfan decided to chase the special train to Richland in his Audi TT, but, you knew that. Despite its slow speed the TT could easily keep up with train as MAS is 25-35mph.

Our train made it nice and safe to Richland.

On the way back we witnessed the quality of the Reading built bridges.

Arriving at Tuckahoe we were presented with a view unseen in 23 years. And look, another spike of railfans.

After the special birthday ride the RDC train departed again for Richland.

Hope you enjoyed the photos....PLEASE look at the ones on the website. Comments welcome.

No comments:

Post a Comment