Medco 8 -- Paint Job

In the fall of 2008, Chapter members embarked on a long awaited project: the restoration of Medco 8 to her original livery.

After years out in the weather following a touch-up in Albany, the Baldwin was looking rather bedraggled. A generous donation to underwrite the cost of paint allowed Chapter members to commence an external makeover. (Tony Johnson photo)

First job was to needle scale two layers of paint and many years of grunge and rust off the locomotive. Needle scaling was the preferred method of paint removal since it didn't require extensive equipment and the paint chips would be relatively easy to contain. Also, several members could work on the project at once.

Here we have Art Turner (l) scaling around a window and Larry Tuttle (r) removing paint from a handrail.

(Jerry Hellinga photo)


After what seemed like months of scaling, the 8 was down to bare metal or at least thin primer. In this view Jerry Hellinga and John Powell scale the walkways.

Next, the metal was wire brushed to remove a light coat of rust and finally sanded in final preparation for paint. (Larry Tuttle photo)

The actual painting job became a balancing act of working around increasingly rainy weather and damp mornings and the characteristics of the paint which needed additional coats to be applied within 24 hours in order to avoid additional sanding. In this picture, the portion of the locomotive to be painted red has received a coat of oxide primer, a coat of white primer and a coat of red on the top surfaces. The strange shadows in the foreground are from a center beam flat car parked on an adjacent track (which made an excellent photography platform). (Larry Tuttle photo)
The upper body now completely red and the side sill sporting a first coat of oxide primer. (Larry Tuttle photo)
The red paint is done, including the side sill. After many yards of masking paper and tape the 8 is ready for primer and yellow on the remainder of the body. (Tony Johnson Photo)

Jerry had already completed the first oxide primer in this view, as he rolls right along with the second, white coat. (Tony Johnson photo)

Finally, the Baldwin is looking like its original self. The dreary November weather masks much of the grunge and crud on the trucks, tanks, stairs and pilot. While there's still a lot of work to be done, the results so far are encouraging. (Fred Harrison photo)
This end view shows some of the work that project leader Jerry Hellinga did to restore the 8 to its original configuration. Gone are the Multiple Unit connections installed by the Magma Arizona as well as a bigger step and additional railings. (Fred Harrison photo)
  Need additional photos of progress in 2009

Photos © 2009 by photographers as noted above