Historical Society, C&TS Agree to Rebuild Rio Grande 2-8-0

D&RGW 315 on the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic. Photo Courtesy of Durango Railroad Historical Society. 

Historical Society, C&TS Agree to Rebuild Rio Grande 2-8-0

By Railfan & Railroad Staff

ANTONITO, Colo. — Denver & Rio Grande Western 2-8-0 315 is expected to receive a 15-year overhaul at the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic next winter and will stay on the narrow gauge railroad until at least 2025. 

This year, the owners of the locomotive, the Durango Railroad Historical Society, have been raising money for the eventual restoration that many expected would take place at the C&TS’ shops in Antonito. The locomotive has taken up residency on the historic railroad over the last few years. This weekend, however, the two groups announced that they had hashed out a formal deal to do the work. DRHS volunteers will assist C&TS employees with the overhaul over the winter of 2021 and 2022. 

The overhaul will entail a complete strip-down of the 315, including removal of all appliances, cab, and boiler jacket and lagging. The internal boiler tubes will be removed and the rear tube sheet replaced. The four flanged driving wheel tires will be turned and a number of wheel bearings replaced.

The narrow gauge locomotive was built in 1895 and restored to operation in 2007 after it sat on display in Durango, Colo. for more than 50 years. Since then it has operated on the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and the C&TS. 

Donations can be sent to: Durango Railroad Historical Society, 315 1472 Inspection, PO Box 654, Durango, CO 81032. For more information, visit www.drhs315.org.

This article was posted on: December 13, 2020