I saw a few posts about folks wanting to see some more photos of the winners of the 2020 Brick Train Awards. I would like to present the regional winner of the Best Steam Locomotive category of the 2020 Brick Train Awards. Presenting the Chicago Burlington & Quincy 2-8-2 Mikado!
A bit about why I choose to model this engine. I live long the "Racetrack" a stretch of triple-track mainline between Chicago and Aurora Illinois and wanted to model something steam closer to home to the Chicago Burlington & Quincy Railroad was the natural choice. I have a Big Boy, Emerald Night, Disney Train so I have smaller and very big engines covered. I need to fill the mid-size freight engine gap. While doing some research I found a CB&Q 2-8-2 Mikado that survived scrapping and that was actually in service! It was engine number 4960.
A bit about the prototype. Engine # 4960 was among the last batch of Mikados purchased by the CB&Q. It was built in August of 1923 and part of the class O1-A. These were well balanced, easily fired, and well liked by their crews. They were replaced with diesels during the Transition era. 4960 was retired from freight service in 1957 and selected for the Burlington's Steam program which ran until 1966. During this time she pulled excursion trains around the Chicago area as the Burlington was headquartered in Aurora at the time. When the program was cancelled 4960 was sold to the Mid-Continental Railway Museum in North Freedom Wisconsin where she sat for a while. Fast Forward to 1981. The Bristol and Western Tourist Railroad was getting started and leased 4960 and restored her. 4960's time with the Bristol and Western was cut short due to bankruptcy. The engineer and fireman that ran 4960 went on to work for the Grand Canyon Railway but kept thinking about 4960. They convinced the GCRR to purchase 4960 where it she was restored and received a face-lift as well. 4960 was converted to burn waste cooking oil and periodically pulls tourist trains from Williams Arizona to the Grand Canyon.
A bit about the build. This was a fun and challenging build requiring a lot of new techniques to accomplish the look and different aspects. I wanted to make this a functional engine that I could play with, but also a detailed engine that I could proudly display in my living room. This is a PowerFunctions engine and has 2 L motors in the boiler along with the receiver. The battery, naturally, is in the tender. I almost did not include the brick-built canvas curtains in back of the cab but @Roadmonkeytj really encouraged me to keep them, and I'm so glad he did. I really was not planning to submit this to the 2020 Brick Train Awards because i was waiting for decals and a couple parts to finish it so I submitted it as a digital build with a work-in-progress photo and a test run video. I was quite surprised to see that I won! See the announcement here at Brick Model Railroader.
Now the fun bit, the photos!
Render of the BTA Entry
Questions, comments are welcome! Thanks for visiting!