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N&W 611 - Restoration and Excursion info

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BigHurt is in the cab and am hearing the whistle get worked good ;)


Got the gloves and eye protection





Here we go





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It's been many years but the Big Three are back together and posed for their first pictures!




There are comments floating around that both the 2156 and 1218 are going for total rebuilds don't know if that is true or not but I'm pretty certain 1218 will be back and my gut says yeah the 2156 will too.  






Look at all the people there to welcome the 611 back home:



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Hmm, I wonder how accurate that article is. Does she really need new wheels or just axles, bearings and maybe tyres?

BTW the last word of the previous sentence isn't a typo, I'm from England, not New England! :lol:

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I wondered the same thing.  I figured tires and bearings most likely but was interested to watch future releases of information to see if it's clarified.

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611 is at the Norfolk Southern Shaffer's Crossing Locomotive Shop having the front wheels, axles and bearings replaced with brand-new.








New wheels/axles





Old wheels/axles


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2017 Excursion info:




January 3, 2017

611 Excursions are coming!




The 2017 Class J 611 Excursion Schedule is set!  Tickets will go on sale to the public on Thursday, January 12, 2017 at noon. 

2017 Public Excursion Schedule & Pricing: (Log on to Fireup611.org or VMT.org for pricing and more information)

  • April 22, 2017 - The Roanoker, Greensboro, N.C. to Roanoke, Va. 

  • April 23, 2017 - The Roanoker, Greensboro, N.C. to Roanoke, Va. 

  • May 6, 2017 - The Cavalier, Lynchburg, Va., to Petersburg, Va. 

  • May 7, 2017 - TheCavalier, Lynchburg, Va., to Petersburg, Va.  

  • May 27, 2017 - The Powhatan Arrow, Roanoke, Va., to Lynchburg, Va. 

  • May 27, 2017 - The Pocahontas, Roanoke, Va., to Walton (Radford), Va. 

  • May 28, 2017 - The Powhatan Arrow, Roanoke, Va., to Lynchburg, Va. 

  • May 28, 2017 - The Pocahontas, Roanoke, Va., to Walton (Radford), Va. 

  • May 29, 2017 - The Powhatan Arrow, Roanoke, Va., to Lynchburg, Va. 

  • May 29, 2017 - The Pocahontas, Roanoke, Va., to Walton (Radford), Va. 


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Latest 611 excursion info:










The Norfolk & Western Class J 611 will head to Strasburg Rail Road for four weekends of special events in September and October


The Norfolk & Western Class J 611, a National Historic Engineering Landmark by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers,
is known as an engineering powerhouse of steam, technology,
and near mechanical perfection.


The Strasburg Rail Road is America's oldest operating railroad
and home to the Norfolk & Western Class M #475


The Virginia Museum of Transportation, Inc., and the Strasburg Rail Road Company announce that the famous Norfolk & Western Class J 611 steam passenger locomotive will head to Pennsylvania's Amish Country this fall for four weekends of special events and appearances.


The once-in-a-never events include being a passenger behind the famous locomotive on the Rail Road's property, opportunities to operate and fire the locomotive, and cab rides. Photo charters, classic car shows, educational behind-the-scene shop tours, and family-centered events will round out the exciting four weeks.


"Since its restoration, the Virginia Museum of Transportation (VMT) has sought opportunities for the 611 to engage people from all walks of life," said Brian Barton, VMT board member. "The partnership with the Strasburg Rail Road allows us to spark a fascination with steam locomotives and transportation, our history, steam technology, mechanical engineering, and design.

The Revolution of Steam


For Strasburg Rail Road, home to the revered Norfolk & Western Class M locomotive #475, hosting the Class J 611 is an unprecedented event.


"Reuniting 475 and 611 is a rare opportunity for railfans and heritage railroad tourists alike," said Steve Barrall, station master at Strasburg Rail Road. "When the two locomotives are side-by-side, you will see, hear, and feel how the Norfolk & Western Railway revolutionized steam technology in under 50 years."


The N&W Class M #475, a 4-8-0 locomotive, was built in 1906 by Baldwin Locomotive Works and put into service by the Norfolk & Western hauling freight and coal trains. Soon after, the railway decided to design and build its locomotives using cutting-edge technology and engineering.


The N&W Class J 611 is the sole survivor of 14 Class J steam locomotives designed and built by the Norfolk & Western Railway. The locomotive rolled out of Roanoke's East End Shops in 1950. Its mission was to pull the Powhatan Arrow, a 15-car passenger train, from Norfolk, Virginia, to Cincinnati, Ohio.


The special events at the Strasburg Rail Road include:

  • September 28-29: A Norfolk & Western Railway Steam Reunion
  • October 4-6: Railfan Photography Extravaganza
  • October 12-14: Rail & Road: A Transportation Evolution
  • October 19-20: At the Throttle of Norfolk & Western Steam

Tickets can be found at strasburgrailroad.com.


Norfolk Southern was instrumental in bringing the two organizations together. "Without the support from Norfolk Southern, the VMT would not be allowed to ferry the locomotive to special events," Barton said. "For the safety of the railroad's crews, railfans, and the general public, the ferry moves will not be announced beforehand."





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