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    • #11917
      Old Loco
      Participant

      Way back in the late 50’s my father who work in a steel mill, got hold of a Brass Steam Locomotive bell. It’s from a W series engine. The bell is 27 inches in diameter and 17 inches high. As yet it has not been disassembled. The clapper is cast Iron and could have been rung with air. It is now stuck in the normal hanging down position. The brass, which has been outside for almost 30 years is quite green. After I dismantle the bell, my question is, what do I use to clean the Brass? I have tried Brasso but it dosn’t cut through the heavy oxidation to the bell well. I need an industrial strengh cleaner. The bell may have been at one time shelaced as a preventitive, but I ma most confident that that wore off long ago.
      Below is a picture of the same type bell and mounting That I found during a visit to the Pennsylvania Railroad Museum In Altoona Pa. where the locomotive was built.
      Thank you in advance
      John

    • #16657
      Carolyn Whitlock
      Participant

      You might benefit from reading the section on restoration of locomotive bells on the website Railroadiana.org: http://www.railroadiana.org/info/pgCleaningAndRestoration.php.

      Good luck!

    • #16658
      hjlong3
      Participant

      If your bell does not have a lot of surface blemishes, you can use a cloth polishing wheel with varied grit polishing bars from Tripoli to Jeweler’s Rouge to get a mirror finish. If you plan to keep it out of doors, it will rapidly develop a patina again. If you plan to keep it indoors, you will want to protect the finish with a clear acrylic or lacquer coating.
      Harry Long, MD

    • #16659
      Dreamer
      Participant

      Could someone Please help me. I did a search to locate how to repair/ restore my bell and landed on this site. Reading the first post brought me to tears. It was written by my Uncle who passed away earlier this year. I now have the bell. I was with him at the railroad museaum in Altoona.Are there people who restore bells? The clapper is still seized (not moving) in the normal hanging position.
      Thank You
      Johns niece Judy

    • #16660
      noomi
      Participant

      I have just put up an old CS bell #4. It sits on the little A frame structure. Instead of the bell sitting level, it sits at an angle. Upon further inspection it seems that the top is loose. There is a square nut on top and I am wondering about tightening that. I am worried that it may break or not tighten down (with its age I imagine the threads may not be there anymore??). Can that part be replaced? Or is it supposed to be loose? Help please! I don’t even know how to describe the problem, but I am a bit worried about it. Any help greatly appreciated.

      Mike

    • #16661
      hjlong3
      Participant

      To Noomi,
      Your bell has nothing to do with the PRR railroad bell. Yours sounds like a CS Bell #4. You may wish to contact Prindle Staion for info on propper mounting for your bell. They currently have the CS Bell patterns and produce these bells. The bell is usually mounted on a post mount rather than A Frame brackets.
      HJLong, MD

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