Push Gathers Steam to Restore a Historic Loco
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An unusual steam locomotive, a 2-6-6-2T, a large articulated mallet tank locomotive, number 110, had been the star at the Black Hills Central Railroad for 15 years when her twin became available. Of course the Black Hills Central said YES! In 2016 #108 came to South Dakota to be restored to operating condition.
Very similar to her older brother, numer 108 is an articulated mallet-type steam locomotive with a wheel arrangement of 2-6-6-2T. It was also built by Baldwin Locomotive Works, but in 1926 (110 was built in 1928). 108 was built for the Potlach Lumber Company of Potlach, Idaho. Originally numbered #24, this locomotive was built to burn coal but later converted to an oil-burner.
In her travels to South Dakota number 108 (then 24) was sold by Potlatch lumber to Weyerhaeuser Timber Company which gave her the number 108 and put her to work next to 110. These are two of only three mallet engines designed with full saddle tanks over the boiler instead of the common split side tanks.
As diesel engines took over in the 1950s, #108 was retired and put on static display at Weyerhaeuser’s headquarters in Longview, Washington. There is sat as a reminder of a proud lumbering history until the company donated it to Northwest Railway Museum.
The Northwest Railway Museum kept 108 safe, but that is all. It was stored out of sight and out of mind…for 50 years…until sold to the Black Hills Central Railroad. And that’s when things got interesting!
Restored to steam and now pulling doubleheaders with her twin!
This article first appeared on steamgiants.com
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