By Stan Hartling
TCNM Board of Directors
Well… the old girl is well lubed, shall we say. The ‘old girl’ is the Burrell Steam Traction Engine that has been on West Caicos for more than 100 years. The importance of the engine has always been on the mind of the Museum and with the help and support of friends and aficionados near and far, we are beginning the long process of protecting and eventually restoring this unique bit of TCI history.
The first recommendation we got from Graeme Glynn after his visit last month was to treat the exterior with motor oil. We had a brilliant crew yesterday and everyone truly worked their tails off in the dust and blistering sun. We broke away as much of the scales as possible and cleaned out the debris so they could get well oil soaked. Its amazing how good “Betty” (so named by Kim) looks with the shiny black coat.
We were also able to get use of the skylift from the security guard Brian Swann, who could not have been more helpful. With a huge amount of effort and testing the lifting side of the skylift, we managed to get all 4 wheels up on boards and out of the sand without any damage. Another important step in protecting the engine.
Special thanks to Mark, Joan, Kim, Donna and Roger from Big Blue who were insane enough to come help!
Next up is to get “Betty” moved to the Museum’s campus on Provo and under cover! For all the other crazy people who want to help contact Pat Saxton at the Museum. We welcome all the ‘crazy’ company.