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  1. #1

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    6/27: High Five! The Little Engine that Could, Part Two

    Guest columnists Steve DeGaetano and Paul Boschan conclude the true story of the locomotive Ward Kimball, discuss it here!
    "Politics is the profession whereby the inevitable is made to seem a great human achievement" - Quentin Crisp

  2. #2

    • Toys 'R' Us Kid
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    Live Steam and Disneyland. Two of my favorite things. Looks like I'll need to take a tip out to DL one of these years to have look at the No. 5.

    Also,
    The engine’s cab signals were installed by Matt Walker and this writer (a vocal opponent of cab signals). Paul took special glee in having someone who passionately dislikes the new signal system actually install it. How could one refuse?
    Could you going to a little more detail on this? Sounds like a good story is behind that dislike.

  3. #3

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    Great story! I love the articles (both parts). Thanks for sharing.

  4. #4

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    Hi College Zoo,

    The trains of the Disneyland Railroad are governed by "block" signals. The entire track is divided into zones or blocks, and each one is protected by a stop signal, so that only one train can be in a block at any one time. This, of course, prevents the trains from hitting one another.

    Ever since the first block signals were installed in the late 1950s, the line has used prototypically-accurate lineside signals with red and green (and occasionally, yellow) lights. These are the signal lamps you can see today along the track. The block signal system worked flawlessly for over four decades.

    Last year, however, someone decided that, for presently-unknown reasons, the system wasn't good enough. Instead of relying on the old technology that had worked so well, it was decided to put magnetic sensors under the engines that would "read" where the the blocks were, and a computer would make sure the trains stayed out of occupied blocks. This information would be displayed on "cab signals," which each locomotive now has--a small green plastic box with three colored lamps (red, yellow, green) mounted in the cab in front of the engineer.

    Not only is this little bit of 21st century technology unnecessary, it is also anachronistic on the 19th century trains. The lineside signals at the stations now only show green, but when the train doesn't load fast enough, the signal blinks, which is actually very annoying at night when you're in the first passenger car. And when the computer that operates the system crashes, the line is tied up, as it was apparently over the weekend.

    What it comes down to is that it seems this change is a classic case of "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." I have not spoken to or heard about one single trains CM who likes the new system--it is universally derided. It took a beautifully simplistic system, and made it complex. And the DRR lost a bit of its romantic railroad heritage for no apparent good reason.

  5. #5

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    Do The Disney Locomotion!

    Full steam...full scream ahead! Along with the Monorail and the Mickey Mouse flower garden, the sight and sound of the Disneyland trains is one of the first magical impressions of what lies ahead for guests upon entering the famed park. A special thanks to Steve DeGaetano and Paul Boschan for telling the story of all the hard work and problem solving that goes into preparing a locomotive such as the No. 5 Ward Kimball for daily operation at the Disneyland Rsort. .

    Love everything about the trains. I like the steam that nearly engulfs the engins at times, the beautiful aound of the blairing horns that scream out into the atmosphere, and the clickety clack of the tracks. The locomotives dynamically add to the motion that makes Disneylad a unique landmark. One would think that Disney would add motion of some kind to DCA, other than Grizzly River Run, the parades, Flik's Fun Fair and the thrill rides at Paradise Pier.

    Didn't realize there is a roundhouse at Disneyland. I'm wondering if it is located someplace backstage and near Frontierland.

    A big high five to the "I Think I Can" attitude that goes into preparing and maintaining these iron horses. They are each an example of a "little engine that could".

    DISNEYLAND IS DOING A BRAND NEW DANCE NOW
    (come on baby do the Disney locomotion)
    ALL ABOARD, YOUR GONNA LIKE IT IF YOU GIVE IT A CHANCE NOW
    (come on baby do the Disney locomotion)

    The CK HOLLIDAY REALLY GIVES OFF THE STEAM, THE EP RIPLEY'S HORN BLASTS OUT AND SCREAMS...SO COME ON, COME ON, DO THE DISNEY LOCOMOTION WITH ME

    YOU GOTTA LISTEN TO THE TRACKS NOW
    COME ON, CLICKETY CLACK, KICK BACK! WELL I THINK YOU GOT THE KNACK, WHOA, WHOA

    HERE COMES THE FRED GURLEY AS PART OF THE CHAIN NOW
    (come on baby do the Disney locomotion)
    A CHUGA CHUGA MOTION LIKE A RAILWAY TRAIN NOW
    (come on baby do the Disney locomotion)

    DO IT NICE AND EASY, NOW DON'T LOOSE CONTROL, A LITTLE BIT OF RHYTHM AND A LOTTA SOUL...SO COME ON, COME ON, DO THE DISNEY LOCOMOTION WITH ME

    TRAVEL 'ROUND THE PARK IN THE EARNEST S. MARSH NOW
    (come on baby do the Disney locomotion)
    DO IT HOLDING HANDS IF YOU GET THE NOTION
    (come on baby do the Disney locomotion)

    THERE'S NEVER BEEN A RIDE THAT'S SO EASY TO DO. IT EVEN MAKES YOU HAPPY WHEN YOU'RE FEELING BLUE. SO HOP ON THE WARD KIMBALL, DO THE DISNEY LOCOMOTION WITH ME

    YOU GOTTA SWING THRU SPLASH MOUNTAIN NOW
    THAT'S RIGHT, YOU'RE DOIN' FINE - COME ON BABY HMM, HMM, HMM
    WHISTLE PRETTY, KICK BACK, YOU'RE LOOKIN' GOOD HMM, HMM, HMM...ROLL ALONG, EASE INTO IT, YOU'RE LOOKIN' GOOD HMM, HMM, HMM...WHISTLE PRETTY



    Last edited by Ride Warrior; 06-29-2005 at 12:42 PM.

  6. #6

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    Wow!

    So, I want more. It was so exciting reading every word, and I hung on every word too!


    Thomas
    "Decisions are easy, if you know what your values are" - Roy Disney

  7. #7

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    The Happiest "Whistle Stop" On Earth

    Chug, chug, chug. Puff, puff, puff. Ding-dong, ding-dong. The little train rumbled over the tracks. I think I can, I think I can, I think I can...I know I can!

    A special salute to craftsman extraordinair Paul Boschan and his crew for the dedicated work they do at the Boschan Boiler, the Disneyland roundhouse, as well as around and about the
    Happiest "Whistle Stop" On Earth. With respect to the Ward Kimball, congratulations on a job well done.
    Last edited by Ride Warrior; 06-27-2005 at 11:24 AM.

  8. #8

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    Does DL need to make any enhancements to the roundhouse to support the additional locomotive?

  9. #9

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    GREAT Article! And to think the stoy only ended two days ago! Ah, but it never really ends does it?













  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by JJ61
    Does DL need to make any enhancements to the roundhouse to support the additional locomotive?
    Well, they haven't needed to; They can store five locomotive and four trainsets on the four roundhouse tracks, and in fact have been since April.

    And yes, congratulations to Paul Boschan and the entire Boschan Boiler crew on a job well done!

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve DeGaetano
    Well, they haven't needed to; They can store five locomotive and four trainsets on the four roundhouse tracks, and in fact have been since April.

    And yes, congratulations to Paul Boschan and the entire Boschan Boiler crew on a job well done!
    Steve -

    Do you percieve that Disney's California Adventure might get some form of transportation / ride at some point in the future? As you know, the park has albost zero motion. I'm thinking perhaps a train or boat that would circle arounf the park - or, perhaps an Electric Railway like DisneySea, or a skyway that travels across it. Maybe some sort of People Mover that travels to various areas, and thru buildings would be doable.

    Also, I'm wondering where the roundhouse is at Disneyland, and how large it is.
    Last edited by Ride Warrior; 06-27-2005 at 08:55 PM.

  12. #12

    • "professional" sailor
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    I found some pictures of the roundhouse here http://www.mynameispreston.com/galle...s.php?album=32

  13. #13

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    Thank you very much for this story.

    I myself have never thought of the Disneyland railroad in past years as any more then a way to get from point A (typically Tomorrow land) too point B (New Orleans Squair) but after reading this, what what went into the DLR, its much much more now. Thank you for enriching my Disneyland experance even more!

  14. #14

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    Steve, Thanks for the info.

    If lighted block signals, and semifores before them, have worked so well in the past I want to find the nut that thought putting a system in that sound like it was stolen from the parade floats! While the priceable of using this kind of gadgetry in locomotive cabs now used in the Union Pacific's locmotive, the UP still has working block signals along the track. Having them not working is on they highest order of dumb!

    They might as put in the GPS system Trains Magazine talked about the Alaska railroad putting in. At least that would be more useful.

  15. #15

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    NEAT!

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