223 High St. S.E., Albuquerque, New Mexico 87102
Locomotive Number 1202 is on the Hospital Track without her main drivers and that leads to quite a story.
The 1202 and 1205 were assigned to a local passenger run and since the schedule called for a stop at almost every station the running time between stations was very fast.
The 1205 was called one wet fall day to pull the local passenger train and Engineer Humphrey carefully inspected and oiled the various parts waiting for departure time.
Finally, when the last cream can and passenger were aboard the Conductor gave a Highball and Engineer Humphrey lost no time in getting the 1205 rolling. She nosed and rolled considerably due to the lateral in her driving boxes but no more than any other 1200 class and acted as thought it would be a very good trip.
Things went well for about thirty miles. Two slops had been made and Engine 1205 was really 'kicking up her heels!' But she must have kicked a little too hard for as Engineer Humphrey said, 'All at once the old girl gave a big lunge and I thought she was going to turn over. We were on a high fill of track at the time and it was at least ten feet to the bottom. Well Sir, she rolled and pitched and bucked and jumped--it felt like she went every direction but off the track! At the first lunge the air went in to emergency application for some reason. I closed the throttle and she settled down a little finally coming to a stop. We had been running about sixty miles per hour when the trouble started.
I got off the engine and looked around. The right main driver, main rod and side rods were missing and nowhere to be seen. The air brake pipes were gone and there was a large hole in the main air reservoir. That is why she 'Cleaned the Clock,' (Unwanted emergency air-brake application) when she was rolling so bad. I whistled out a Flag and then walked back along side the train until I met the Conductor. I told him we had 'real trouble,' and would need another engine. I then continued walking back looking for the main driver and rods. It was getting dark and I never found them.'
They were threshing fourteen acres of oats on August 24, 1968 with a 19 Hp. Keck-Gonnerman steam engine and a 3254 Huber Separator belong to Wayne. Frank Coffman is on the engine and Wayne Drudge is on the separator. Wayne has owned his own outfit since he was 18 years old and did threshing for straight 27 years. Mrs. Drudge and neighbor ladies had an old fashioned Threshers dinner and served 18 men for dinner that day. This engine has been seen at the Whitbey Steam Show in Ft. Wayne, Indiana for the past four years.
A relief Engine and Crew finally arrived and the 1205 was pulled to the first siding and set out. The fireman had already dumped the fire off the grates and filled the boiler full of water. She would be pulled m later by the wrecker.
On the return trip next day, I slowed down passing the trouble spot to see if I could locate the right main driver. There it was! It had rolled down the fill embankment-through the right of way fence and out into a very wet wheat field where it was resting in the mud. Rods were scattered along the way where the wheel had rolled.
At the terminal, the Master Mechanic didn't say very much. It had been an old progressive break of about eighty per-cent of the main driver axle inside the wheat fit and could not be seen or detected by ordinary inspection. No one was to blame.
The wrecker went after the 1205 and the various parts. The 1205 moved along very well all things considered but getting the main driving wheel back to the railroad where the wrecker crane could pick it up and load it on a flat car was something else!
The farmer who owned the wheat field was plenty mad and was out to see what it was all about! The Claims Adjuster was doing his best to quiet the man down, making one promise after another, especially while the wrecker crew brought out every piece of cable and chain on the equipment car to reach out to the wheel and drag it in. Drag--is hardly the word! The heavy wheel being pulled through the wet mud of the wheat field left a path to behold.
At last the wheel was picked up and loaded. The rods and pipe had already been loaded and the wrecker headed back to the home terminal.
In the roundhouse it took some time for authority to come through to repair the 1205. In the mean time the 1202 was removed from service on account of the boiler flues coming due for removal after four years of service which is Fedderal Law. It was then decided to use the main drivers and rods from the 1202 for repairing the 1205 and this was done. When repairs were completed the 1205 returned to service but the 1202 was sent to shop and after spending a long time on the Hospital Track (where this picture was made) the locomotive was scrapped.
How much the farmer was paid for his wheat damage was never mentioned!!
The 1200 Class locomotives were built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1908. The cylinders were 231/2 by 28 with 79 inch drivers. Tractive effort was 33,300 pounds.