~ Updated: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 ~

Here's a photo of one of the first ones "out of the hatch", as created by your friend and mine, Jimmy Booth for yr fthfl svt. Isn't she a beauty ?

Click Here to see a Super Sized view of this great model, one that will fill yer screen ! ( Yeah, you could click on the photo and get the same result. 'Just checkin' to see if yer payin' attention. . . )

Here's another photo "Ol' Bills Shay", glidin' down the high iron. The West Side kept their Shays lookin' pretty good. Aside from the fact that they'd spend 3-4 months out of the year sidelined, (Because of WINTER in the Sierras. ), these shays were "Oil Burners", which were a whole lot cleaner burning than their coal burning cousins back east.
And too, "normal" road engines kicked up a lot of dust and grime due to their speed. Shays, on the other hand, with their leisurely 16-18 miles per hour top speeds, were less inclined to kick up dust.
A kinda "long way around" to explain why the #6 you see here isn't heavily weathered. But them's the facts.

West Side Shay #6 bore Lima Locomotive Works production number 817, having been delivered in December of 1903. She had her share of "incidents", which may or may not have hastened her demise. According to Allan Krieg's Book, "Last of the 3 Foot Loggers" her final mishap was at "Deadwood Fill" in June of 1940, and she was never rebuilt thereafter.

However, there are conflicting reports as to when she finally met the scrappers torch; The aforementioned "Last of the 3 Foot Loggers" indicates in one place that it was in 1940. But Allan also describes her going into the ditch at Deadwood Fill in June of that year, and says she remained there for at least two summers thereafter. And The Shay Web Site lists her demise as occurring in 1950, if I read it correctly.

Whichever be the case, she still served her masters for close to forty years, at the very least, which is pretty darned good, considering the environment she was subjected to.

Not many photos exist of either #5 or #6, but heck, back when they were in operation nobody much bothered to take photos of logging power. Logging operations were more of a curiosity than "real railroads." So most iconographers chose to shoot up their precious film on the more glamorous steam power of the mainline roads. After all, that film was NOT cheap, and neither were the cameras !


  • Check the Cab Windows . We studied the existing photos long and hard, and came up with the conclusion that, what with the long hot summers in the Mother Lode country, the need for cab windows was nil. Steam engines boil water to make steam, right? So if you think it was nice and cool up there in that Engineer's seat Boopy, you' got another think comin', I believe. . . And so we left the side window where the Engineer sat out so's he could see. . . And maybe try to snatch a bit of whatever breeze the thing would generate on its brisk 16 mph trip up in to, ( or out of ) the woods. . .

  • Over Sized Water / Fuel Bunker. These shays were "soakers"; Railroaders slang for non-super heated steamers. ( You can tell this by the "dry pipe" that emanates from beneath the steam dome, elbows back, then elbows down into the engine's manifold. See? Maybe you just learned somethin'? )

    Back to the reason for the oversized water bunker / tank / "tender": "Soakers" used 'way more water than did "super heated" locomotives. So the oversized bunker was probably no more than added insurance that the old girl would make it to the next water stop without suffering a boiler explosion! Good enough reason, eh ?

These models were available finished as our "conventional"

  • P-B-L FOREGROUND MODELS® - P-B-L Sound Equipped;
    and as
  • P-B-L FOREGROUND MODELS - Tsunami® Equipped.

    Production quantities were quite small, with only 25 of the #6 produced. They have long since glided into the history books.

    Wanna see what her "sister", the number 5 looked like ? Click on the photo opposite to be magically transported to a page featuring Shay #5...

    How about a look at our "Catalog" or "Generic" Two Trucker ? Click on the photo opposite some some shots of the 55 Ton "Catalog Shays". Great Photos on this page too !

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