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Susquehanna Steam Express Engine 142 Souvenir DVD
 4 of 5 (1)

Susquehanna Steam Express Engine 142 Souvenir DVD Mark I Video M1SSES
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This unique program presents the complete story of the Susquehanna Railroad's Chinese-built SY Class 2-8-2 142, one of the world's newest steam locomotives.

Constructed in 1989 by the TangShan Locomotive & Rolling Stock Works in China, the 142 was originally delivered to the Valley Railroad tourist line in Connecticut as their number 1647.

The program describes the history of the SY class and shows these interesting engines in action at various locations in China. Then, for the first time in railroad video, we'll take you into the large TangShan erecting shops to follow the construction of a steam locomotive. Every phase of the operation is included, from the machining of individual parts to placing the boiler on its frame. You'll also see brand new steam locomotives being fired and test run at the plant.

Next, the career of Valley 1647 is detailed, beginning at Camden, NJ, where she was unloaded from a freighter after the long journey from China. Coverage inlcudes the locomotive's trip across New York Harbor on a carfloat, the run via the Bay Ridge Line and Hell Gate Bridge to Connecticut and the first fireup and moves under steam. A typical run over the Valley Railroad is presented featuring exclusive ChoochCam locomotive mounted minicam views of the handsome engine in action!

The 1647 was sold to the New York, Susquehanna & Western Railroad in late 1991. Renumbered 142, the 2-8-2 was assigned to passenger excursion service. The program concludes with coverage of several trips in the Upstate New York and New Jersey areas, featuring great trackside scenes, a cab ride, and ChoochCam footage.

75 minutes *DVD* Full Color
Produced by Marc S. Balkin
Written and Narrated by Jim Boyd

TVD Price:$ 22.45
List Price:$ 24.95
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Runtime:1 Hour, 15 Mins ($0.30/min)
Producer:Mark I Video
Aspect Ratio:Full Screen
Shrink Wrapped?:NO!
Disc Type:DVD
Region Code:0 Worldwide NTSC

  • Some or all of the DVDs or Blu-rays from this producer are manufactured using DVD-R or BD-R material.
  • This producer chooses not to shrinkwrap most of their products. All the products we sell are brand new direct from the producer. We never sell used or second-hand products.
Susquehanna Steam Express Engine 142 Souvenir DVD
Steamboy (Revere MA US) on 2020-07-10 20:44:08.

  •  4 of 5

In this 1992 videotape/2005 DVD, the program starts with 142 going over the camera as it goes across the bridge. After the opening credits, 142 whistles at a bend with a yellow banner on the side of the coach on June 14, 1992. The late railfan magazine editor Jim Boyd does the opening narration as 142 rolls through the crossing with some children waving, then we see it whistling for the crossing. Vintage black & white & color films of steam on the Chicago & northwestern, Virginian, Milwaukee road, Norfolk & western & even the Burlington Zephyr are included. Not to mention the union Pacific M-10000, FT-103 visiting the Boston & Maine which these clips of the diesel visiting new England are preserved by the B&M railroad historical society, a Pennsylvania alco switcher in pusher service, alco FPA4 units on union Pacific & new York central, & a seaboard F unit. Back to steam, a c&NW 4-6-2 is on a passenger run, followed by a modern shot of former gulf mobile & northern 425 on the blue mountain & reading in Pennsylvania taking on water. Back to the vintage films however, a workman loads the coal into the tender, followed by an E unit arriving. One shot of articulated engines doubleheading are shown, as well as a tripleheader on the C&NW. On the southern, alco RS3 units 2113 & an unknown unit is on a freight, followed by A freight on the Santa Fe, as well as all of the at&sf diesels leaving the shops at the same time. On the Susquehanna, a trio of alcos are on a fast freight, followed by a lone 2-8-0 crossing the bridge on a freight, & an alco on a regular passenger run. Steam on the Susquehanna was gone in 1947. An alco FPA4 is on a freight, followed by a steam powered double header with engines 492 & 483 on the Rio Grande freight. Next we witnessed former Canadian national 4-6-0 number 1533 on a tourist attraction, followed by 2-8-0 number 15 carrying yellow coaches, another 2-8-0 on the black hills central in South Dakota, & even saw Burlington 5632 on a passenger special as well as 4960 which is now at the grand canyon railway. Meanwhile in Pennsylvania, reading T1 2124 backs up while switching tracks, as well as 4501 on its early years of mainline steam specials in the 60s. This clip concludes the vintage films while moments before heading back to 142, a one shot look at 844 in 1990 is included as well as the oil burning test run of challenger 3985 on a freight. Traveling around the world to china, a class QJ 2-10-2 is on a passenger run, followed by another 2-10-2 on a freight, and another locomotive on a passenger run. A look around the major yards are included. Which includes a departure of a doubleheader on a freight while a QJ is on a turntable. Another 2-10-2 is on a freight as it goes under the bridge, while another QJ leaves the yard with a freight. 2-8-2 number 1658 is being serviced as well as a visit to the rebuilding shops. Number 2271 is on a freight followed.by another engine in pusher service. Number 0964 runs light while another engine is on a passenger stop, & even more scenes around the yard area. On the mainline, a Pacific is on A fast passenger run. While another one is going at a slower speed. In the shops, a class JS 2-8-2 is shown which includes a pair on freight trains while another visit to the building shops are included. Back in America, a visit to the valley railroad company in Connecticut is shown as 2-8-0 number 97 leaves the depot as it negotiates a bend. In deep river landing, the passengers are going on the Becky Thatcher river boat while 97 ran around the train & couple up tender first. On the return trip, the locomotive runs alongside state highway 154 with only 3 coaches. Note that the second coach came from the Holyoke heritage park railroad. Back in essex, number 40 is serviced, followed by some films of the locomotive in its early years of service. Back to the modern Times, 97 passes by the depot. As the camera pans to 97 stopping while the workman switches tracks, look carefully on the left & witness a new York central F unit on display. Back in China, a visit to the different building shops are included. With new parts built, the engine was put to together as it was fired up a week later. A mention of other engines made in china:1658 on the Knox & Kane in Pennsylvania, later new haven 3025 in Connecticut, & Boone & scenic valley 8419 are heard. All 3 engines are hauled on a cruise ship to California to drop off 8419, then it heads to the Panama canal, as it drops off 1658 & 1647 in New Jersey on December 16, 1989. At the 20 minute mark, Heavy cranes are moving the engines out of the boat & onto American rails for the very first time. It's risky & dangerous but the job has to be done. At the transition of the 80s into the 90s in January, 1647 was on a conrail freight to Greenville New Jersey, while On the 11th of that month, 1647 is on a barge across new York harbor to the greenbrook army terminal. Not only was 1647 out to sea, but also a group of Burlington northern boxcars want to join in. Arriving at the Brooklyn section of new York city, the alco pulls the steam engine out of the barge where it would be stored for the night. The Next day, a pair of long island MP15 units tow the locomotive on the bay ridge branch where it'll connect with conrail, & later go over the hell gate bridge & onto the wye at old saybrook. In the going away shot of the MP15 units, a regular NYC subway goes over the bridge. 2 months later on March 14, 1647 is fired up for the very first time in Essex. During the fire up, a crane was used to load the coal into the tender. Despite that the pressure is starting to rise, 1647(142) tried to clear out its own whistle. With the Johnson bar in reverse mode, the clock stroke 4:00 as the test run has officially begun. North of Essex, 1647 pushes a Pennsylvania boxcar, then it performed some runbys. At deep river 1647 passes by Morristown & Erie alco RS3 number 15. 36 or 37 days later on April 20, 1647 operates the test run with coaches at it departs this common southern New England depot while passing by NYC 4096 on display. Miniature cameras were placed under the fireman side of the cab as 1647(142) whistles at old deep river road. A cab ride is included. Followed by a mounted camera scene under the engine. Moments later, 1647 whistles at one of the crossings while heading to deep river. Meanwhile across the nation into the Boone & scenic valley in iowa, 8419 makes a test run on May 20 1990. Just 4 days after 2 celebrities: jazz singer Sammy Davis Jr, & Muppet creator & actor Jim Henson. More scenes of 8419's inaugural run can be found in the best of 1990 from pentrex. First 8419 whistles at a crossing, then it rann around its consist at the Boone depot. Note the trolley poles & wires over the engine. Back east we are in Pennsylvania on the since been gone Knox and Kane as 1658 (3025) operates its inaugural run yesterday may 19. We are back in Connecticut as 1647 (142) whistles at old deep river road, then it curves & whistles under the highway bridge. Afterwards it whistles at a crossing along state highway 154, followed by a cab ride. Back to vintage films, former us army 0-6-0 number 2 carries a pair of coaches in 1966 on the Delaware & seagull railroad. Over the next several years, the D&S expanded the freight service out of Utica. Alco & geep diesels operate the freight businesses. A map on the Susquehanna mainline from little ferry to Stroudsburg is shown. Vintage black & white films of steam on freight is shown as well as color films of alco diesels on commuter trains, plus a budd car in June of 1966 where passenger service ended. Freight serviced was relocated 1969 & in 1971, a washout occurred leaving a 27 mile portion of the line intact. In 1976, the railroad declared bankruptcy. 3 years later in 1979, the Delaware & seagull saved the Susquehanna for $5,000,000. More maps are shown. This time it's on the new Susquehanna route in 1982. One is for the Binghamton to Utica line at 95 miles, the other for chenango forks to jamesville at 62 miles. A map of the haulage route from Binghamton to Passaic junction near new York city. A 4 unit freight goes over the trestle, followed by a 6 unit lash up on a work train. In sealand, a look at the container yard is included which contains helicopter scenes. A 4 unit freight is on a doublestack. Followed by a winter scene of a 4 unit doublestack with a pair of Burlington Northern units in the consist: 6525 & 6542. A 3 unit doublestack goes over the bridge in the winter. The same train passes by the former depot. Throughout 1986, the Susquehanna restored the mainline to Sparta junction. This project was estimated at $8 million. The first trains ran over the restored line in late October 1986. 2 years later on June 22 1988, the Susquehanna was appointed by the interstate comerse commission. While at the same time, the railroad purchased a quartet of the standard cab B40-8s. Some years later, the Susquehanna operates passenger specials. A mention of the UP & since been gone NS steam programs are heard. In June of 1990 while St. Louis was the site of that year's NRHS convention, the Susquehanna placed an order of having its own Chinese steam locomotive 1698 which is supposed to be numbered 141. Unfortunately due to bad weather, the gulf war & Murphy's law, the ship carrying the containers & the newly constructed Mikado was gone for scrap as it lies more than 20,000 leagues under the sea in India. Meanwhile in Essex, 40 & 97 are fully rebuilt as they are announcing that they no longer need 1647. After 2 years of operating on the southern New England steam powered railroad in 1990 & 1991, 1647 made its final run in Essex about 3 days before Christmas 1991. At the transition of 1991 into 1992, 1647 was renumbered to 142, changed its tender to the Susquehanna logo, & bid farewell to New England on January 21, 1992. On a caboose hop, 142 made a test run from Binghamton to Utica on January 29. Even though it's still winter in upstate New York, 142 performed an excellent job with no diesel helpers. 3 months later on April 4, 142 entered passenger service between marathon & Cortland NY. In late may during memorial day weekend, 142 operated 12 trips on a 3 day weekend from butler Nj to Hawthorne. A cab ride is included. Listen to the original Chinese whistle as 142 pounds the rails. Steam returned to the Susquehanna in over 26 years. Because there are no turning points at both ends of the line, SD45 number 3634 pulls the return trip. A black & white flashback to the 30s in Oakland NJ is shown. With 2 decapods on a freight, followed by 142 in 1992. Back in the cab, note the water drops on the camera lens. A coach sits next to the depot as 142 whistles by the crossing at Newtown road. In no time at all, 142 arrives at Hawthorne. Already switched directions, 3634 leads the train back to butler with 142 on the rear. When was the last time you rode in the cab of a steam locomotive while going backwards? Arriving back in butler, the passengers got off the train while new passengers waited their turn to ride behind 142. A look at the crew of 142 is included. Moments later, another cab ride is shown while 142 rolls down the line. Again, just listen to that high pitched whistle as well as the horn on 3634. On one scene, 142 passes by a vintage milk truck. With 3634 leading the return trip, it passes by a little red caboose next to the station on display. vintage black & white & color stills Are shown at little ferry. On June 10, 142 heads to little ferry. Here it leaves the shed while it slowly approaches the turntable & also taking a spin. Afterwards, 142 backs up as it passes by the diesels. Back on the butler to Hawthorne line, 142 is facing the opposite direction. Everyone wanted to get a unique look at a steam engine both young & old. Again, miniature cameras were mounted on the locomotive, as well as more cab action. On one scene, 142 whistles by a lumber mill while a car honks it's horn, then it whistles by a campus. There is some zig zags between trackside & onboard the locomotive for the entire day. The final 5 minutes of this program features an entire cab ride aboard 142 as it goes under highway bridges, squeezing through the trees, & also whistling at various locations along the way. The closing credits roll as 142 whistles across the bridge in Oakland NJ.

After this program was released, 142 made special trips. In 1995 it travelled to Scranton Pennsylvania for the grand opening of the Steamtown national historical site. In the rest of the late 90s & early 2000s, it operates on selected days for Susquehanna specials. Nowadays since 2004, 142 is at the Delaware river railroad right next to the Pennsylvania state line in Phillipsburg New Jersey.

Overall, the late railfan magazine editor Jim Boyd does a great job narrating this program.

Additional remarks by Steamboy:
Narration: Could have used more.
Would kids enjoy this? Yes.
Image quality: A little rough around the edges.
DVD Value:: Fair.
Recommend to others? Definitely.

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