One of the buildings is a former Soo Line depot that was located at Cylon, Wisconsin. The building has been refurbished and railroad items such as a lighted crossbucks and switchstand have been added.
On November 22, John Peter, Mike Bearden, and Arlyn Colby met at the Museum to discuss where the caboose should go and found the perfect place beside the depot. Volunteers quickly moved two stump pullers that were in the way.
Part of the roof will need some work!!
With donated funds, a wood Soo Line caboose was purchased from the Railroad Memories Museum in Spooner.
The caboose was moved to our Barron County Museum on Thursday, July 7, 2016. Anderson Trucking of Grantsburg, WI did the honors with the following documentary describing the move.
The caboose was located on track near the Spooner Museum so it was moved south to the end of the existing track for easier loading.
Thanks to Anderson Trucking for a great job!
Restoration began on July 27. Here Burnell Hanson starts removing plywood from the east side.
On July 28, Arlyn Colby removed the plywood from the ends.
Removal continued on July 29.
Joe Lewis of Bloomer and Lee Wohlk of Cameron help remove the siding from the east side of the caboose.
Work continues on the inside and outside of the caboose. Here volunteer Greg Egan helps scrape paint in the cupola.
Joe Lewis and Arlyn Colby removed the quarter round between the ceiling and wall before painting primer on the rafters. A good start on refinishing the ceiling!
Today we completed the restoration of the rafters inside the caboose. They were in tough shape. First we scraped off as much of the old paint as possible. Then we put primer paint on them and then put putty in all the spaces between the paint chips that wouldn't come off. Next, all these areas had to be sanded smooth. Another coat of primer was applied before the final green paint. We are happy with the way they turned out.
Rafters Before Restoration:
Rafters After Restoration:
Next, the spaces between the rafters will be restored and then the ceiling will be done!
October 4, 2016. Time to work on the east side of the caboose. Gary Larson of La Crescent, MN drove up and stayed 3 days to help with the project! First step was to remove the rotten support pieces--and some didn't even exist as they had completely rotted away.
It turns out that we would have to remove almost all the support pieces on the south end as what remains was so poor that it wouldn't provide stability for the new siding.
October 5, 2016. That meant we had to build a new framework for attaching the siding.
October 7, 2016. We hung OSB on the framework. This will give good support to our new siding when we put it on.
After the OSB was hung, the side was wrapped to prevent moisture from getting to the OSB.
October 10, 2016.
Gary Larson and Arlyn Colby put the new siding on the east side of the caboose. It certainly isn't done but now the caboose is enclosed and ready for winter. When the 3 windows are rebuilt, they will be cut in and another coat of red paint will be added, maybe this fall yet!
Arlyn Colby applied a coat of red paint over the red primer paint. Here's what it looks like with the paint applied!
With the caboose fully enclosed, it will be tarped in preparation for winter. Next spring restoration will continue!
With the pleasant fall weather, painting continued in the cupola. Part of the cupola has been cleaned up and the wood sanded. The white paint is primer.
Mark Knapp welded wheel stops on the track so the caboose cannot be rolled off the track.
November 11, 2016
More ties needed to be added to the track. Museum member John Peter and Arlyn Colby inserted 10 ties into the spaces between the existing ties. They need to be better spaced and rocks added, but that will happen next spring.
Museum volunteer John Peter offered to take the brake valve that will be located in the cupola and restore it. This valve was given to us by Terry Grace. It was covered by layers of green paint and John did an excellent job of removing the paint.
Now he will prime it and paint it and we'll install it next summer. These brake valves were located in the cupola so the crew could put the train into emergency braking in case of a problem.
The finished air brake and gauge. THANKS John Peter!
January, 2017. Restoration of the caboose doors and windows begins in the Museum shop by Museum volunteers. Here John Peter uses a heat gun to remove layers of red paint.
Arlyn Colby and Jack Nedland scrape LAYERS of old paint off one of the caboose doors.
Arlan "Giggs" Giguere was the main repair man for damaged windows and doors.
At the same time, John Peter wanted to restore the hardware for the windows. Here are before and after pictures of these pieces.
Greg Egan and Arlyn Colby removed the grab irons from the top of the cupola in preparation for a new roof and also to paint the grabs.
Greg Egan, Joe Lewis, and Arlyn Colby then wire wheeled the grab irons to remove paint and rust in preparation for painting.
Lee Wohlk and Arlyn Colby removed roofing from the caboose in preparation for putting down a rubber roof.
Part of the roof was very rotten so they decided to add two
4' x 8' OSB sheets to glue the rubber roofing to. But first, Lee removed some very rotted areas where there would be nothing solid to attach the OSB to.
In July, 2017, professional railcar (especially cabooses) restorer Fred Bauers arrived to give advice on our project.
He also spent hours "Needle Scaling" to remove old paint and grime from the caboose trucks.
First, a heat gun was used to remove as much paint as possible. Some of the yellow has been removed in this photo.
Then the wood was sanded, followed by filling holes with wood filler. It was then sanded again and painted with red primer. (This is NOT the final red color). The yellow boards at the edges are rotted and will be replaced.
137 milled and kiln-dried boards were purchased for replacing the wood on the sides of the body and the cupola. First they had to be primed. Here Amber, Cyrus, and Jesse Elmer are shown priming some of the boards.
And Gary Hinrichs helped paint (until we got rained out a few hours later!!)
Gary Hinrichs then climbs the ladder to paint the new boards (and the old ones that were not replaced)
Lots of hours of painting result in a great looking caboose.
It's not done but significant progress was made in the summer and fall of 2017. Many hours of work remain, especially restoring the inside. With winter upon us, work will continue during the spring of 2018.
After a LONG winter, spring finally arrived in May and it was time to start work again on the caboose. Glen Olson spent 3 days removing the old plywood siding on the backside of the caboose.
Unfortunately we found lots of rotten boards and supports which will have to be replaced!
We think the caboose was last repainted on June 25, 1964, before the plywood sheathing was put on.
Funds are needed for continued restoration and building a canopy over the caboose to protect it. Individuals, businesses, and organizations are encourage to make a donation.
The Barron County Museum is a 501(c)(3) and all donations are tax-deductible. Any donation will be greatly appreciated. Donations of $100, $500, and $1,000 or greater will be recognized on a plaque in the caboose.
Donate onlineDonate at barroncountymuseum.com
Donate by mailPlease write a check to Barron County Museum and put Caboose Fund in the memo. Checks may be mailed to:
Barron County Museum
P.O. Box 242
Cameron, WI 54822