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September 4, 2017

4 days to go!!

It’s now just 4 days to go until Rail Days 2017 and this weekend we had 2 good work sessions at the shop to get things ready.? We’ll still be out there a few more times this week to finish off some things, but everything is starting to look great.

Saturday was a big cleaning day mostly, with some painting being done on 46 as 6 members were out, Wayne G, Jim, Nolan, Mike, Ken & Ken. Monday however was much busier. Ken, Wayne G & JT worked in the office, cleaning, painting, and organizing things for the weekend. Need to make rooom for 3 more small layouts and a few vendor tables. Elsewhere in the shop, Wayne M cleaned, primed, and painted our ex-CNR steam locomotive rerailers, and they will be on display from now on. After that he started working on the TH&B gondola, masking off and getting a basecoat on the TH&B logo on the one side. Hope to have that done by the weekend.


Wayne M cleaning the rerailers.


Primed and ready for paint.


All painted for display.










Masking the TH&B logo.


Base coat on the logo.









Ken and Glen worked on 46. Stencils were cut and the striping was masked off and painted. It was a very long project, but it turned out fairly well.? It’s not perfect, but it really doesn’t make a big difference in her appearance.


Glen masking the cab stripe.


Engineman’s side.


Fireman’s side.







Thanks to everyone who came out to work this weekend.? We’ve been making some great progress the last 2 months, and it’s really starting to show. Really pleased with the amount of work on HEPC 46, she’ll be looking good for the night photo shoot during Rail Days.

August 26, 2017

2 weeks to go!!

With just 2 weeks to go until Rail Days, significant progress is being made at the shop, and things are starting to come together for the event.

Another great day with 9 members out working on things. Ken and Peter worked in the office display area cleaning and moving things around, Colin was working on the new safety railing for along the work platform, Adam started cleaning up under the inspection pits, Wayne G. was out cutting the grass, Mike worked on the compressor on the GE 25tonner, and Glen drilled new holes in the coupler mounting plate on HEPC 46. Ken Jr. also made a run to Toronto to bring back 2 original 2ft gauge cars once used in the Wainfleet Peat Bog outside Port Colborne. One of these cars will be rebuilt back to a bog car for display. Also dropped off 2 rerailers, used for getting equipment back on the rails, and once hung on the side of steam locomotive tenders. Thanks to Bob Hayes for donating these great items to the Museum.

All in all, it was another banner day at the shop, and so much has been getting accomplished lately.



newly acquired steam locomotive rerailers.


former Wainfleet peat bog car.


HEPC 46 posing for pics with her new pilot beam.








Here’s a link to the youtube video of HEPC 46’s test move with new coupler install.


August 19, 2017

Major progress on many fronts

Today (August 19th) was an absolutely incredible day. 10 members were out and everyone was taking on a project. The big news today was the arrival of the new front pilot beam for Hydro-Electric Power Commission ALCo 0-4-0ST #46. Derek Costello has been working on this for just over a month, and we have been eagerly awaiting this delivery. Needless to say, we were definitely NOT disappointed. It looks great.? Derek had to fabricate the new coupler cut lever and mounting brackets, a grab iron across the length of the beam, and one of the spindals for the grab iron. The beam was installed easily, but we ran into an issue with the coupler installation, so we need to make some adjustments to that next week. All in all, this is a great step in the restoration of 46. There is still some work to do on the front, but it really does make a big difference, and we’re really pleased to be able to show this progress off at Rail Days in 3 weeks.


Derek arrives with the new beams.


Unloaded from the truck.


Getting ready to lift the beam in place.










The beam in place for the first time in decades.


Footboard brackets installed, footboards are next.


Checking the coupler height. everything looks great on the engine.

Elsewhere at the shop, Wayne M was outside working on the north track, spiking and gauging track so we can move the TH&B gondola outside for the event in 3 weeks.? Wayne G and Ken worked in the office, painting and cleaning, Adam and Colin worked on the brush cutter, and managed to get it to fire, but could not get it running, but it’s a good start. Mike, Ken, Jim, Glen and Nolan all worked on 46 installing the beam and cleaning up in the area.


Need a few adjustments, but it’ll do for now.

So very pleased with how much work got done out there today. Everyone jumped in and helped out and we are starting to accomplish things with the help of some of our new members. I hope to have more news coming in regards to HEPC 46 very soon, and am very excited to see this project getting the attention it so very much deserves.

August 7, 2017

46 Pilot beam progress

Wow, Derek has been moving right along with the front pilot beam and it is looking really good. Derek has created an impressive looking front beam in just over a week, and we can’t wait to see it on 46.


Derek drilling through the pilot beam.


3/4 view of the new beam.


Head on shot of the new beam.

August 4, 2017

HEPC 46 restoration begins.

The cosmetic restoration of Hydro-Electric Power Commission 1920 ALCo 0-4-0ST #46 has begun. Thanks to the generous assistance of Derek Costello, new wood pilot beams are being fabricated. However, there are a fair amount of pieces missing, so some will need to be fabricated. Some we have 1 of, others we have none. New coupler cut levers also need to be made. Derek came to the Museum a week or so ago to take measurements of where the pilot beam needs to mount. He took what parts we had as well, and has already cleaned and painted them. We are very grateful to Derek for taking on this part of the project, and we really look forward to having this part of it done.? I’m sure it’ll look great when complete. We will add more pictures as the work progresses.

There is still a long way to go with the restoration of 46. We are seeking help from someone that can do all the steelwork on the cab. Another large piece of this project, but once complete, it would allow us to have visitors safely access the cab.


New hardwood pilot beams.


Push pole pockets cleaned and ready.


Front footboard brackets.








1 of the grab iron end posts.


Newly fabricated cut lever brackets.


The assembled cut lever brackets test fit.




July 7, 2016

Open Weekend – July 9th and 10th


HEPC46 has had some work done, and will soon be undergoing a cosmetic restoration.

This coming weekend is our second big event for the year. We have been working hard on new displays, and to fix some other issues in the shop itself. Some of that work is ongoing, but we’re ready for our visitors this weekend. Saturday night from 8-10pm we will be having a mini night photo shoot at the museum.? We do ask for a $5 donation, with all proceeds going towards the cosmetic restoration of HEPC 46, our steam locomotive. Photographers will be required to bring whatever they need for the shoot. Different angles will be available with both our GE diesel and steam locomotive.

As always, admission to our open weekend, which runs from 10am to 4pm rain or shine both days, is by cash donation. There’s lots to see and do for all ages. 2?operating train layouts, Thomas play table, equipment displays, with some equipment open for visitors. And don’t forget our 2 display cars and our Museum store.

For more information visit or call 905 357 6539.


May 25, 2016

PROJECT 46 returns

FB_IMG_1464204076899When the Museum first went after the acquisition of Hydro Electric Power Commission ALCO 0-4-0st steam locomotive #46, we started Project 46 to raise the required funds. Well, that fundraising initiative is getting ready to start back up, as we plan to start the cosmetic restoration of 46 this summer. We will be starting with the cab and going from there. Our goal for this project is $5000, which we hope to use for matching funds to double the amount to complete more work. All donors will be added to the Project 46 donor plaque inside the cab.

To help support this initiative, you can make a secure donation online through Canada Helps at:

Please select HEPC 46 for the project you wish to support. All donations over $25 are eligible for a Charitable tax reciept.

HEPC 46 was built by the ALCO Cooke works in September 1920 and delivered as stock to the Hydro Electric Power Commission at Queenston Ontario along with sister #47. Both were used on with many other types of small steam and electric locomotives during the construction of the power canal for Sir Adam Beck Generating Station #1. 46 worked along with our HEPC E-7 electric on that project and are together almost 100 yrs later. She is one of the most historic pieces remaining from that project, and last of her kind from the steam railway operations. The NRM thanks you for your support on this great project.

October 1, 2014

The Boxcars arrive home


401639 is the first to be lifted off it?s trucks and loaded for the move.

After almost a year in Stevensville, and even longer in storage in Niagara Falls, the Museums 3 ex-CP Rail boxcars have finally arrived at the shop. The move took place on Monday September 29th and took just over 12hrs to complete.


401258 is next, with the trucks shown rolled out of the way.

With very good summer weather (which we didn?t get this summer!), Ken, John, Rick and Gary from the Museum met with the mover, Pioneer Heavy Haul,and the cranes from Vic Powell Welding of Dunnville, at the former DMI Industries plant (now owned by Trinity Industries of Texas) in Stevensville, ON.? Ken Sr. and Wayne G were at the shop getting things ready for the arrival on that end. #401639 was the first car loaded, with #401258 second and #57974 last. The load was sitting high on the trailers as the air tanks on the bottom of the cars could not be removed. Blocking was utilized to keep the cars off the trailer deck. The first car took the longest for loading, having to have smaller blocks placed to lower it further to clear the wires. The lifts went well, however movement to the site was slow.


401639 & 401258 are loaded and ready to head for the shop.

It was a lengthy process getting the cars loaded and tied down. Attar Metals, our fantastic neighbours to the west of our location (Who operate out of the former CN Car shops), brought a flat deck over to move the wheelsets from DMI to the shop.? They also came over to the shop with the loader to pull the Plymouth and steam engine outside as 2 of the boxcars were going inside behind HEPC #46. Once it was all done, they also moved the locomotives back inside the shop.


57974 is the last car to be loaded, and was also the last car to be unloaded.


Milton from Attar Metals unloads the wheelsets while waiting for the first car to arrive.

CP 401258 arrived at the shop around 4pm and was quickly unloaded onto its wheels and moved easily inside the shop.? The Trackmobile was used for this, but it wasn?t really needed, as it rolled so well we actually just pushed it the final 20ft to the stop blocks. The final 2 cars arrived at dusk and were unloaded and placed onto their trucks in the dark. 401639 shares the track behind HEPC #46 with 401258, while 57974 is currently outside awaiting movement into the middle track behind HEPC E-7.


401258 is being readied to be unloaded.



401258 is the first car to be moved into the shop.

The Niagara Railway Museum extends its thanks to:

– Pioneer Heavy Haul and Vic Powell Welding for the floats and cranes for this move.

– Milton Braun and Attar Metals Fort Erie for their continued support and assistance. So much couldn’t be accomplished without their help.

– Preston Bass and Trinity Industries of Dallas, Texas, owners of the former DMI plant for allowing us to move the cars to their site, and for their patience as we worked through the lengthy process of making this move happen.

– The dedicated members from the Museum who spent the day making this move happen. (John Weylie, Wayne Gibson, Ken F Jones, Karen Jones, Rick Howard, Gary Eller, Ken S Jones)


HEPC #46 spends some time outside for the first time since she arrived 4yrs ago.


The Plymouth was also outside, and made it further down the track than ever before in order to allow space for the unloading of the boxcars.

June 11, 2012

46 gets a new coat!!

With restoration slowly progressing on both Hydro Electric Power Commission electric E-7, and our Plymouth diesel, I felt it was time that HEPC 46 got some much needed attention.? In an earlier post I showed a photo of 46 with the majority of the water tank painted. This weekend saw the completion of that part of the project, and I must say she?s looking very nice.? It wasn?t until I had the first coat of white on the grab irons that I discovered in the one photo we have found of her, she didn?t actually have white grab irons.? However, because they look so nice, I figured they can stay that way for now.? She is currently unlettered and unnumbered. Hope to at least have 46 back on the cab by the July open house, just a few weeks away.


in the left photo, 46 still has some of the masking on the front grab irons on SaturdayJune 9, 2012. On Sunday June 10, the compressor paint has been finished, as has the rest of the white.? Even part of the cab received a new coat of paint, despite the deterioration.

It?s good to see 46 looking quite a bit better. The running boards will be replaced next, and the steam dome will be back in place before the open house. She will look like quite a different engine. It?s only flat black, but it?s a lot better than the faded black and rust colour she previously had.


June 1, 2010

HEPC #46 Arrives

46feshopI am very pleased to announce that on June 1st, the NRM brought Hydro Electric Power Commission 0-4-0ST #46 back to Niagara for the first time since 1922.? She is spending her first night in the NRM shop in Fort Erie, indoors, for the first time in well over 30yrs.? There was a massive amount of work that has gone on over the past week to prepare for her arrival, from building, and ballasting track, creating a level surface on which to back the trailer onto, to prepping the engine for loading and movement from Orillia.it28b

I send out a big thanks to our members who have been able to assist with all this work, which couldn’t have been done without thier dedication to the Museum.? David Walmsley & Cecil Byers, the former owners of the engine were of great assistance in the loading?of the locomotive at thier site outside Orillia.? The backhoe performed very well, and the engine never would have made it on the trailer without the skill of both of these gentleman.

Villeneuve’s Steel Wheels of?Sudbury did the move for us.? Their trailer, which is designed to move railway equipment was the perfect fit for this job. Our driver, Rick, was great during the loading of the engine, and obviously takes great pride in his work.? The professionalism of this company is something that will make us turn to them again the next time we need equipment moved.? Everything went well, and the engine arrived safe and sound in Fort Erie.? Beam Excavating donated the use of a Caterpillar IT28B front end loader to assist with the unloading of 46 at the shop, and also shoved it inside when we were done with the photo ops.? The unload was done safely, and Sam, the loader operator, not only kept 46 in control at all times, but also handled her with care knowing the fragile state of the locomotive.


The efforts of everyone involved made this move a great success.? This marked a major milestone in the development of the Niagara Railway Museum, and we hope to continue this progress with the arrival of our Plymouth diesel, ex-INCo electric, our boxcars, and our GTR caboose.? My thanks to everyone who made this happen.

Ken Jones


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