CTRC - The California Trolley and Railroad Corporation.
Preserving the historical heritage of railroading and trolleys in the Santa Clara Valley of California.

CTRC Calendar

CTRC meetings are open to members and non-members.  You are welcome even if you are not a member.

We usually have a short (30 minute) discussion of status of the various projects.

We meet at 10am at the SP2479 locomotive restoration site in the double wide trailer.

Date: First Saturday of each month.

Time: 10am

2479 Healy Avenue
San Jose, California

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SP2479 Saturday Feb 2

John Ezovski

Small crew Saturday Feb 2.  A couple of projects are moving forward.

Every quarter or so, the locomotive and tender are rolled to prevent corrosion from forming on the various journal surfaces.  There sufficient track to the locomotive's drivers to complete on full revolution.  Two forklifts provide the pull.  the pilot truck brakes are used to stop.

The tender's air pipe to its brake cylinder had worn through . A section of schedule 80 pipe was obtained to replace the bad section of pipe.  Inspection of the train air pipe mounted on the tender is also in need of replacement.  Any one know a supplier that would like to donate about 60 feet of 1 1/4" schedule 80 pipe?

Repairs to the one heavily worn sander has begun.  A bit of refinement is needed in the process.  Hopefully this coming weekend the first step will be complete.

Friday members of the California State Railroad Museum visited the restoration site and trolley barn.  Their primary mission was to examine the Lenzen Ave. turntable prior to disassembling their table for cleaning and repair.  The turntable located directly behind the stare museum is identical to the Lenzen table.

While at the restoration site, the group also inspected the locomotive.  During this inspection, the Jerry and Karen Lane Foundation grant was mentioned and that these funds are to be used to purchase main and side rod bronze.  Albert Di Paolo, CSRM's Restoration Specialist, mentioned a possible source for rod bronze in Stockton. He will email me with contact information.  It may be possible for the rod bronze to be obtained locally.

Caboose Arrives From Salinas

A caboose was hauled from Salinas to History San Jose and was coupled to SP1215.

The full story and more photos may be seen here: Caboose arrives to History Park

The caboose had been in Salinas for 19 years.

The size of the caboose dictated a somewhat roundabout route: It was transported from Salinas via highways 1, 156 onto Northbound US 101 to a bit south of Gilroy.  There it was carried on highways 25 and 152 back to 101 again to continue to History San Jose.  Various permits and police escorts were involved in the process.

Peninsula Crane and Rigging (Joe Bauer) provided the lift and Taylor Trucking provided the trucks.

SP2479 - Saturday, Dec 8, 2012

John Ezovski

Machining of the right side reverse shaft bushing is complete.  Today the bushing was installed.  A number of different machining processes were required to turn the $240.00 piece of bronze into the required part.  Big thank you to AJR.

Several studs were turned out to replace short studs holding the front left valve cover.  Studs were installed.

A new cover was installed on the tent frame.  The frame was relocated so that protection is provided to both forklifts.

A goodly amount of water was found in the smoke box and front coupler pin holes.  Most of the water was evacuated from both locations.  New covers were fabricated for the stack and coupler pin access hole.

Trash was collected and trash bins emptied.

Inaugural “Holly Trolley” rides to commemorate start of historic trolley service

The Valley Transportation Authority will roll out an historic trolley for the holiday's "Holly Trolley" service this Friday, 12/7, at 6:00 PM and until 7:00 PM at the Civic Center Light Rail Station.

On Friday, December 7, join transportation leaders and the California Trolley and Railroad Corporation (CTRC) volunteers on a “Holly Trolley” ride!  The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority’s (VTA) historic trolley only operates this time of year, offering free rides to the various holiday festivities in downtown San Jose. Don’t miss out on this festive ride down memory lane and a chance to learn more about the spirited volunteer effort to fund and restore all six vintage streetcars on display at the San Jose Historical Museum in Kelly Park.

When: Friday, December 7, 2012; 6 – 7pm [See note, below, for CTRC attendees]  First train departs at 6:15pm from the Civic Center Light Rail Station, 803 North First Street, San Jose.

Through the month of December, the Holly Trolley will operate on an hourly schedule every Friday from 6:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.; and on Saturdays and Sundays from 1:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., weather and conditions permitting. Visit www.vta.org for trip planning assistance or contact VTA Customer Service at (408) 321-2300, TTY (408) 321-2330. Follow us on Twitter: @VTA and “Like” us on facebook.com/VTA!

Who: Join Rod Diridon, members of the California Trolley and Railroad Corporation, and the talented volunteers who were vital to the restoration process on a historic trolley ride to downtown San Jose.  Learn about the spirited efforts that led to the funding and restoration of six vintage streetcars.

The California Trolley and Railroad Corporation is a private, non-profit organization with a Board of Directors composed of local business and community leaders founded in 1982.  The restoration effort was made possible through donations from the community and over 90,000 volunteer hours by more than 300 volunteers.  Each car took over one year of full-time volunteer work to be completely restored.  Old parts were saved when possible, and new parts were designed and built when necessary.  Special attention was paid to the historic characteristics of cars which have undergone many changes during their lifetimes. When fully restored, the cars are better than new, with hand-polished wood interiors and fresh coats of brightly colored paint.

CTRC Attendees will need to gather at the Civic Center Light Rail Station (parking at County/former City Hall building) to catch the first loop that begins at 6:18p, arriving at the Diridon Station at 6:38p; the trolley heads back to Civic Center at 6:46p and arrives at 7:04p.  The trolley runs every hour so if attendees want to stay downtown to have dinner or go to Christmas in the Park, they certainly can!

Since we have already promoted the start of “Holly Trolley” service, this opportunity would focus more on the history and volunteer effort (different spin in the media).  Members of the public would have a chance to meet volunteers, learn about the history either while gathered on the light rail platform or in the trolley itself when making its way downtown since you will have a captive audience.  I can distribute a news release and stakeholder update on Wednesday announcing the inaugural ride and include more detailed information about the restoration efforts.

Super Heater Units and Large Rack - Nov. 6, 2012

John Ezovski

Today (Nov. 6) Larry, Denis and I unloaded the 23 super heater units stored in the large rack.  The rack was partially disassembled.  Rack components were then moved into the inside passenger car and reassembled.  Most of this work was done by noon.

There were a few rack components to assembled after lunch.  About 1:15 we began to load super heater units into the rack.  I don't understand why them things got heavier as the after noon wore on; they must have a positive temperature coefficient.  By 3:15 the 23 units were in the rack.

There are 17 units remaining on the second rack at the end of the double wide.  At least six of there are units that tested good and need to be moved into the car.  Hopefully there will be sufficient workers present to complete this Saturday.  Otherwise we will meet again on Tuesday to move remaining units under cover.

Sad News

The following email was received today (October 5, 2012) from Barbara Johnson, Director of Operations, History San Jose:

We just learned that our long-time friend and Trolley Barn volunteer, Gene Martin, died last night.  Gene was one of the most helpful people I knew. He was always there to help our education department.  He made Contenta the cow, the Statue of Liberty Puzzle and many other projects for HSJ's education programs, in addition to all his work in the Trolley Barn and with CTRC.  He worked endless hours to make sure the Senter Road trolley line kept on track and on time.  I will miss seeing him at the Park, but know that he is now at peace with no more pain and suffering.

The date for a celebration of Gene's life has been set for Saturday, Nov. 3, at 3 p.m. at the First Unitarian Church of San Jose, 160 North Third St.

Because street parking in the immediate vicinity is metered on Saturdays, people attending should probably park in the Third Street Garage, 95 N. Third St., between St. John and Santa Clara Streets.

SP2479 Status - Sept 29, 2012

John Ezovski

Today's crew was small but a bunch of work was completed.

Prior to departing on vacation our master mechanic machined two grease fitting adaptors for the frame which allow lubrication to the reverse link pins.  There were issues getting grease to flow around the left side frame's inside reverse link bushing but they were overcome.

Today the reverse link and radius rod were installed.  None of the issues that were experienced on the right side were encounter.

Cleaning and painting of running boards continues and is near completion.  The upper surface on the right side including the engineer's platform are now complete.  The fireman's platform has been cleaned and primed.  The "well" area between the engineer and fireman have been wire brushed also wire brushed was the apron between the locomotive and tender.

The piece of bronze needed for a new bushing for the engineer's side of the reverse rod has been received.

SP2479/SP1215 - Sept 1, 2012

John Ezovski


The past couple of work sessions the crew struggled with assembling the right side reverse link, radius rod, and combination lever.

The combination lever pin would not seat in the valve cross head.  After three plus hours of filing and polishing with emery paper, the pin was seated and secured with tapered pins.

Assembly of reverse link, reverse link block, cheeks and radius rod were next.  Bolts that hold secure the cheeks and capture the reverse link are fitted.  Each hole and bolt was marked by SP.  The first bolt did not fit its assigned hole.  As the afternoon wore on, the task was terminated.  Measurements of the bolts and holes were taken before returning components to storage.  It was noted at this time that bolts did not match assigned holes.  Bolts were then matched to holes.

Yesterday the reverse link assembly was bolted into place.  Assembly went off with no issues.  Securing the radius rod to the cross head did present some problems.  The pin which retains the radius rod to the cross head would not fully seat.  A small amount of filing on the pin resolved the issue. (See photo.)

Tramming of the cross head for the left steam valve is now under way.  Yesterday a wire was centered in the bore of the cylinder and measurements taken.

Cleaning and painting of running boards continues.  Running boards on the left side are complete. Right side is in work.


Locomotive at History Park has begun to show affects of weather.  Some polishing of rods and a coat of clear lacquer has been applied.  Windows are in the process of being repainted.

29th Annual Volunteer Recognition BBQ - Thursday, August 16, 2012

29th Annual Volunteer Recognition BBQ
Thursday, August 16, 2012
5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
San Jose History Park
1650 Senter Road, San Jose, CA

Beverages provided by Bottomley Distributing Company

BBQ provided by the Santa Clara County Firefighters

Music by the Singing Conductors

This is a FREE event in appreciation of CTRC’s dedicated volunteers and guests (Please RSVP so we know how much food to have available!)

Event Title Sponsor: Wells Fargo Bank

Sponsors: Dan Caputo Company, Cupertino Electric, Hatch Mott MacDonald, Hensel Phelps Construction, HNTB, KLIV/KARA Radio, and Anonymous Donor

Please RSVP by 8/9/12 to Lynda Ramirez Jones via email at:
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 408-924-7560

SP 2479 Saturday July 28, 2012

John Ezovski

Paint has been applied to all remaining areas of boiler.  Boiler courses 1, 2, 3, and firebox from running board up over roof sheet to opposite running board now have a fresh coat of black.

Weld build up the second combination lever pin hole in cross head for left steam distribution valve.

Inspect reverse shaft bearings.  Found fireman’s side bearing okay.  Engineer’s side bearing exhibited severe wear thus must be replaced.

Complete improvements to power cables to Bridgeport mill and Hardinge lathe.

SP2470 Status

John Ezovski

June 30

Traming of the cross head for the right steam distribution valve is nearly complete.  Adjusting the cross heads position with shims has consumed two worker's time over the past two weeks.  It now appears that the cross head is in a good position to accept the valve's rod.

Two tasks remain before the valve can be inserted into the cylinder.  The two bolts that attach the right upper and lower guides must be replaced.  These will be machined in the coming week.  A grease fitting and path need to be added to the outside lower guide.  Once this work is complete, the task will be repeated on the left side.

Upper surfaces of the locomotive's boiler have begun to show affects of weather.  Flexible staybolt caps and sleeves show the most weathering.  To prevent damage, most of the boiler will be wire wheeled, primed and painted.  This task is well under way.  Above the running boards on the fireman's side, barrels 1 and 2 have been thoroughly wire wheeled and primed.  The backhead and the firebox wrapper sheet above the running boards on the engineer's side has seen the same service.

July 14

Wire brushing and application of primer to boiler continues.  Except for two small areas primer has now been applied to the boiler and firebox from the running boards on one side, up over the top of the boiler to the running boards on the opposite side.

Traming of the cross head for the left steam distribution valve is on going.  Both holes in the cross head that holds the pin which connects the upper end of the combination lever are over size and out of round.  The upper and lower "bridges" were thin.  Decision was made to weld up both holes.  Today the first hole was built up.  During the coming week the welded area will be bored.

A wire was position in the middle of the left steam distribution cylinder.  Several measurements were taken.  Until the cross head is finished this process can not continue.

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