More About the WSLCo. Shays

Last week I posted a photograph taken during my trip to the Georgetown Loop Railroad, one of just a few slides that had been spared in the Great Flood of 2016. I was recalling that there were three of these 3-foot narrow gauge Shays operating on the line at that time. So I dug around a bit and found photographs of all three of these machines, each recorded by Brian Cazel. Unfortunately none of these locomotives are still operating on the line, their last service there occurring in 2004.

However, all of these Shays still exist. I’ve given a little information on each in the photo captions.

West Side Lumber Co. Shay #8
#8 is a 3-truck Shay built in 1922 by the Lima Locomotive Works in Lima, Ohio for the West Side Lumber Company. It weighs 154,400 lbs and has 12” x 15” cylinders and 34” drivers. An oil burner, it operated at a boiler pressure of 200 psi delivering 36,150 lbs tractive effort.

In 1966 she was sold and transported to the Georgetown Loop Railroad, where she operated until 2004, then was displayed until 2008. She then went to the Royal Gorge Route Railroad in Cañon City, Colorado for a period, and finally to the Moffat Road Railroad Museum in Granby, Colorado in October 2021.
West Side Lumber Co. Shay #12
#12 is a 3-truck Shay built in 1927 by the Lima Locomotive Works in Lima, Ohio for the Swayne Lumber Company railway as their #6. It weighs 113,500 lbs and has 11” x 12” cylinders and 32” drivers. An oil burner, it operated at a boiler pressure of 200 psi delivering 25,830 lbs tractive effort.

She was sold to the West Side Lumber Co. in 1940 and renumbered to 12. At some point she went to the West Side & Cherry Valley Railroad as their #12. From there she was sold and moved to the Georgetown Loop Railroad, where she operated until 2004.

Her last stop was at the Colorado Railroad Museum in Golden, Colorado, where she was placed in storage. I understand that she did see brief operations there from 2011-2014, but has since returned to storage.
West Side Lumber Co. Shay #14
#14 is a 3-truck Shay built in 1916 by the Lima Locomotive Works in Lima, Ohio for the Sierra Nevada Wood and Lumber Company as their #10. It has 11” x 12” cylinders and 32” drivers. An oil burner, it operated at a boiler pressure of 200 psi. I haven’t seen other specs for her, but would assume they would be similar to #12 above.

She was sold to the West Side Lumber Co. in 1939 and renumbered to 14. She was again sold to Hal Wilmunder and became Camino, Cable & Northern #4 at Camino, California in 1965. She then went to the Colorado Narrow Gauge Railroad as #14 in Central City, Colorado in 1974, and finally moved to Silver Plume, Colorado to become Georgetown Loop #14 in 1981. She ceased operations there in 2004.

She’s now stored at the Colorado Railroad Museum in Golden, Colorado. A couple years ago volunteers did a cosmetic restoration, painting the locomotive’s exterior and restoring her to the West Side Lumber Co. paint. The latest photograph I’ve seen of her was dated in 2023 and she appears to be in reasonable condition.

5 thoughts on “More About the WSLCo. Shays

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *