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 Post subject: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:22 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 1:51 pm
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Location: Baltimore, MD
Somehow, this story seems/sounds so improbable that if I were an editor I'd send the fact-checkers to triple-check it before running it:

http://www.kttc.com/story/36576027/a-du ... on-city-ia

Quote:
A Dutch museum finds one of the last WWII locomotives in Mason City, IA

MASON CITY, Iowa (KTTC) -

A Dutch Railway museum in the Netherlands, Stoomtrein Goes-Borsele, is expecting a very special shipment next week from the Lehigh Cement Company in Mason City, IA.

An old Whitcomb Diesel locomotive from World War Two, one of the last of its kind since these types of trains were scrapped after years of service, will be cleaned up and sent to the museum.

"It is a big deal for us, we were approached by a museum in the Netherlands that wanted to restore this back to its original condition to celebrate the 75th anniversary of WWII, and we're happy to be a part of that," said Plant Manager Tom O'neill.

The locomotive has been at Lehigh Cement Company for more than ten years and it is covered in cement. They planned to clean it up on Wednesday but rain delayed them a bit.

" We're gonna clean it up a bit for them to ship it overseas, we'll get some dry ice, get some of the dust and debris off it," said O'neill.

This locomotive, however, has a spot on a ship that is going to set sail next week to the Netherlands.

This locomotive was built in 1944 in the U.S. by Whitcomb and was shipped in 1945 to France. The Dutch Railways bought 20 locomotives of this type to start up the railways after WWII, but they were all scrapped.
The museum has been waiting for years to get this train - they will fully restore it for the tens of thousands of tourists will be able to see it, and eventually take a ride.

"We were looking for years to find one Whitcomb to complete our collection in the railway museum. We found one locomotive in Mason City at the Lehigh Cement Company in Mason City," said Project Manager Jos van der Heijden with Stoomtrein Goes-Borsele. "After a few calls with the Lehigh Cement Company they loved our plan to save one of these locomotives."

Then Lehigh offered to donate the locomotive to the museum. The museum then started a crowdfunding site to be able to transport the train to the Netherlands.

"Fortunately we got an brilliant offer of Spliethoff Shipping to sponsor the shipping of the locomotive!" said van der Heijden.

Lehigh Cement Company said they expect the locomotive to set sail for the Netherlands on Tuesday.


What specifically sets off my red flags is the statement that they "expect the locomotive to set sail for the Netherlands on Tuesday" when it still (apparently) is in Iowa waiting to be cleaned up. Did the reporter mean that it would leave Mason City for the docks (by truck, flatcar, or whatever) on Tuesday, or did they mean it gets loaded on a ship Tuesday??


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 8:46 am 

Joined: Sun Apr 05, 2015 1:28 am
Posts: 196
Location: Suffolk, UK
The appropriate section on the Stoomtram Goes Borsele website about the project (one for Google translate).............
http://www.destoomtrein.nl/cms/index.php?show=PO0072LI
No updates mentioned concerning the purchase/shipping arrangements though.
Been to Mason City a couple of times but didn't know about this loco being there. Mind you I was more concerned with the Iowa Traction operations on my visits!

Would have thought that the ones that FS have in Italy would have been a bit nearer to the Netherlands, but they have been rebuilt a fair bit over the years.

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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:24 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:05 pm
Posts: 570
I assume the loco in question is one of these two:

60359 12/1943 B-B Std 65DE19a 65 650hp
U S Army #7989
Lehigh Portland Cement Co, Allentown,Pa
Lehigh Portland Cement #16-260, Mason City, Iowa

60387 3/1944 B-B Std 65DE19a 65
U S Army #8146
Lancaster & Chester #50, Lancaster ,SC
Northwest States Portland Cement, Mason City,Iowa


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:34 am 

Joined: Sun Apr 05, 2015 1:28 am
Posts: 196
Location: Suffolk, UK
John T wrote:
I assume the loco in question is one of these two:

60359 12/1943 B-B Std 65DE19a 65 650hp
U S Army #7989
Lehigh Portland Cement Co, Allentown,Pa
Lehigh Portland Cement #16-260, Mason City, Iowa

60387 3/1944 B-B Std 65DE19a 65
U S Army #8146
Lancaster & Chester #50, Lancaster ,SC
Northwest States Portland Cement, Mason City,Iowa


#7989 according to the SGB webpage (info hidden fairly well down the page though.....)

Looking through that page, they appeared to be looking at it being shipped from Cleveland, OH, direct to Antwerp in Belgium, so at least it hasn't got to be moved to a US East Coast port for onward transport to Europe.
This appears to be the route http://www.spliethoff.com/cee-way-express/

EDIT Having looked at one of the ship tracking websites, one of their vessels MV Floragracht is currently en route to Cleveland through the Welland Canal & due to arrive at 02.00 local on Fri.
Could be in a position to sail for Antwerp on Tuesday bearing in mind their service only appears to run twice a month.

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Last edited by 70000 on Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:51 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:07 am
Posts: 60
The story is fully true. They have been looking for a longer period for a Whitcomb locomotive as the dutch railways took over some 20 from the US Army. Crowdfunding was started after they found one. They changed to Lehigh Cement when it appeared to be in better condition, although the locomotive had its trucks changed for newer versions. The original trucks were kept by Lehigh, however, so the locomotive can be restored to original condition except for the original engines. It has now Cummins ones instead of Buda, the dutch ones received Thomassen built diesels.
It is nice to see that shipping is expected shortly, that was not mentioned in the dutch website.
Kind regards
Jos Koopmans


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:15 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:05 pm
Posts: 570
Another piece of WW2 railroad equipment that is supposed to be preserved in the Netherlands is a 20 ton steam crane. The only information I have is "Near Den Bosch, Autoweg van Numegen". Does it still exist?


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:43 am 

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 9:34 pm
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
1,2, 3....
"Over there, over there...
"The Yanks are coming, the Yanks are coming...

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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Thu Oct 12, 2017 2:37 pm 
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Location: Pac NW, via North Florida
I'm not surprised at all.
I've spent time in the Netherlands and they really have an interest in WW2 there as well as a true love for the Allied forces that liberated them from the Germans. The war there got specifically nasty throughout the end of the war.
There are some excellent museums in that nation devoted to the war.
the Dutch RR museum at Utrecht, the last time I was there, had preserved rolling stock from the allied effort.

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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 10:48 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:07 am
Posts: 60
The locomotive was loaded on the trailer yesterday and on its way to Milwaukee to be loaded on board the ship tomorrow.
Kind regards
Jos Koopmans


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 11:58 am 

Joined: Sun Apr 05, 2015 1:28 am
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Location: Suffolk, UK
JJG Koopmans wrote:
The locomotive was loaded on the trailer yesterday and on its way to Milwaukee to be loaded on board the ship tomorrow.
Kind regards
Jos Koopmans


Thanks for the update - I see the relevant page on the SGB website has now been updated with that info now!

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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Thu Oct 19, 2017 8:14 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:55 pm
Posts: 688
Location: Warren, PA
This looks to be the locomotive - it's further identified on the web index as that SN#

http://www.northeast.railfan.net/images/tr_lpc2.jpg

Note that it has the original skirting, tapered cab... replacement trucks.
Nice find and nice preservation. You can just about count the number of operational Whitcomb 65-tonners now on the fingers of one hand, although I always like to be proven wrong. Several of the other survivors have had extensive rebuilds or were post-WWII rebuilds from Whitcomb with the wider cabs.

Guessing this is in Italy, another destination for the Whitcombs during the war:
https://i.pinimg.com/originals/0e/f4/b8 ... 1c07b0.jpg

Wow, this just got posted yesterday.... (10/18/17)
https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnew ... 1200%2C805


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Fri Oct 20, 2017 4:44 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:07 am
Posts: 60
Loaded on board:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1nnkG_ ... e=youtu.be
kind regards
Jos Koopmans


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2017 4:09 pm 

Joined: Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:07 am
Posts: 60
The Whitcomb arrived safely in the Netherlands today.
The first picture is loaded on the trailer. Note the difference in wheels which the better european roads allow. The second picture is entering its new home
Kind regards
Jos Koopmans
picture: Jos vd Heijden


Attachments:
IMG-20171107-WA0003 2000 on trailer.jpg
IMG-20171107-WA0003 2000 on trailer.jpg [ 161.96 KiB | Viewed 470 times ]


Last edited by JJG Koopmans on Tue Nov 07, 2017 4:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2017 4:11 pm 

Joined: Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:07 am
Posts: 60
Attachment:
whitcomb at new home.jpg
whitcomb at new home.jpg [ 123.63 KiB | Viewed 467 times ]

picture: Reinier Z.


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 Post subject: Re: WW2 Whitcomb Switcher To Return to Netherlands
PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2017 4:59 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 5:55 pm
Posts: 688
Location: Warren, PA
The exterior condition of that is amazing.... do you know if it was still operational?

Most of those 65-tonners were run until they dropped, and some run past that on one remaining engine....


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