Phase II began on Monday, May 27th, with Bill and I doing last minute preparation for the arrival of the asbestos contractor on the 28th. The contractor arrived on the Tuesday afternoon and immediately began scraping the lose and flakey paint while others began erecting the frame work for the tent. Each step of the contractors work was protected with plastic drop sheets to catch flakes of paint.
The next morning saw the raising of the plastic tent, negative air supply and access hatches for the asbestos removal. During this process, the workers wear special suits and breathing apparatus while in the tent and have to wash off before coming back outside the tent. By the end of the day they had removed over 90% of the jacketing and a large portion of the asbestos. They would take each piece of jacketing and wash it before passing it out through the tent to us for stacking on pallets so they could be stored after for future reference.
Thursday saw them finish the removal of the jacketing and the asbestos, double bagging the asbestos and debris and storing in a 20 plastic lined container for hauling off for disposal. By 5pm that afternoon the contractor had removed the tent, washed off the locomotive, cleaned up the area and was ready to leave. The contractor had estimated 5 days to do the job and finished in only 3 days!
Santa Fe 2921 was now exposed revealing the extent of the ravages of 36 years of neglect. The newly exposed surfaces of her boiler and tube revealed a lot of very thick and flakey rust corrosion and the stay bolt caps and sockets were in very bad shape. It was apparent that we would have to re-think our approach to doing the work in phase III. It would take a team of volunteers several days of intensive chipping, scrapping and needle gunning to remove enough of the flakey rust just to get down to a solid surface rust so we could spray a rust converter.
Bill and I had already been negotiating with the city as to how best stabilize the boiler and they had agreed to do the spray painting of the engine if we would prepare the surface before hand. They had done some research on rust converters and settled on using "Jasco" primer and rust converter to be sprayed on, using a Hudson type garden sprayer on the rusty areas, converting the rust from an oxide into a phosphate, making an excellent primer base for painting. After letting the rust converter set for 48 hours, they could come and spray a final coat of gloss black rustoleum to protect the converter. The city also agreed to provide 2 needle guns, and air compressor, enough Jasco rust converter and garden sprayers along with the necessary ladders etc. for us to use. That meant that phase III would have to be done in two stages, one to prepare the surface and convert, and one to return after painting an replace all necessary parts back onto the locomotive. So we set about lining up our volunteers and making plans to make the two trips that would encompass the work of Phase III.
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