Frisco Silver Dollar Line Steam Train

An original SDC favorite, the Frisco Silver Dollar Line takes you out of the city to the surrounding wilderness where you encounter such sites as: the old Caboose (complete with a family of vagabonds), tree-dwelling rattlesnakes, a Moonshine Still, the engine Icabod Peabody crashed into the woods on the last trip, the entire town of Pottersville, and last but not least, Alphie and Ralphie’s gang hide-out where you are stuck up at stick point. During the Christmas season, Alphie and Ralphie are replaced by Grandpa, who tells the nativity story accompanied by lights.
The entire trip takes about 20 minutes.

The Frisco Silver Dollar Line was added in 1962, and originally served at least partly as a mode of transport from the old parking area to the park. One of the train’s was once owned by Henry Ford and was purchased for Silver Dollar City from the defunct ‘Adventure Town’ of Alexandria Bay, New York at a cost of $15,000. At least one of the other trains seems to have originated from Germany after WWII, though my info on this is not too clear at the moment.

There was some difficulty in getting the train working properly at the park during it’s inaugural season. Due to the grade of the uphill slope, the train was not able to make the entire round trip voyage. It kept sliding back down the last hill, wheels churning furiously, setting fire to the surrounding trees. To solve this problem the skit involving a stick-up perpetrated by Alphie and Ralphie was added to the train’s route, giving the engine time to steam up for the last push up the hill.
Thanks to SteamFreak for the following historical analysis and train specs.

The Frisco Silver Dollar Line has long been an icon of the park, but most people do not realize what a rich history these little engines have most people simply discount them as “theme park trains” when in fact they are hard-working relics of decades ago. 60 years ago if one had been strolling the ship yards of Germany they would have seen the engines in their natural form looking like most European locomotives of the era. When the Herchends purchased them in 1960 the “Americanized look you see now was added to give more of an “1880’s” appeal. This included adding diamond shaped stacks and cowcatchers, also modifying the cab to the American style.

The first locomotive on the line was a 1922 Davenport 0-4-OT from the Wayne County Board of Roads Commission. In 1962 it was converted into a 2-4-2 and a tender was added along with a diamond stack and other “wild west” fixtures. Numbered 76, the Davenport operated on the Frisco line (wearing Frisco “coonskin” heralds) until it was retired in the 1980s. (It was the display) Two 1934 Orenstein & Koppellbuilt 0-4-OTs were purchased from Peter Buescher & Sohn of Mueater, Germany, in 1965. One of these, No.43, has been restored to service as a 2-4-OT and is in use today. A larger 1938 Orenstein & Koppell 2-4-OT, former Kies unit Schotterwerke Nordmark No. 13, is also in use and retains its large European-style cab. The newest engine on the roster is a 1940 2-4-OT built by KolbenDanek for Hans Vatter, AG., which carries the number 76. There is also a 1918 Henschel 0-4-OT in storage. All locomotives are painted red and carry the Frisco herald. Frisco aided the Herchends when they had problems laying track, the line was then re-named “The Frisco Silver Dollar Line”.

The Exact Specs are listed below.
No. 76:
Wheels: 2-4-0
Builder: Davenport Locomotive Works
Build Date: 01/1922
Construction No.: 1900
Empty Weight: Unk
Weight on Drivers: Unk
Driver Diameter: 22
Tractive Effort: 3,180
Boiler Pressure: 140
Cylinders: 7×12
Fuel: Oil
Gauge: 600mm

No. 43:
Wheels: 2-4-0T
Builder: Orenstein & Koppel
Build Date: 1934
Construction No.: 12503
Empty Weight: 19,800
Weight on Drivers: 19,800
Driver Diameter: 22
Tractive Effort: 4,590
Boiler Pressure: 140
Cylinders: 8.5×11.75
Fuel: Oil
Gauge: 600mm

No. 13:
Wheels: 2-4-0T
Builder: Orenstein & Koppel
Build Date: 1938
Construction No.: 13168
Empty Weight: 24,200
Weight on Drivers: 19,000
Driver Diameter: 25
Tractive Effort: 6,757
Boiler Pressure: 170
Cylinders: 9.5×13
Fuel: Oil
Gauge: 600mm

This one is in storage:

Wheels: 0-4-0T
Builder: Henschel & Son (Kassel)
Build Date: 1918
Construction No.: 15918
Empty Weight: 24,200
Weight on Drivers: 24,200
Driver Diameter: 24.5
Tractive Effort: 6,200
Boiler Pressure: 170
Cylinders: 9.5×11.75
Fuel: Oil
Gauge: 600mm

I’ve been told that the majority of the oil burned is refinded cooking oil from the park’s resturants, just another example of the park “green” operations.