Kaiser Steel KS 1905 Caboose

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  Lot #90  (Sale Order: 5 of 284)  
Sold for: $7,500.00 to onsite
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Approx 156" tall, 412" long, 131" wide

Kaiser Steel had two home-built cabooses it used on the Eagle Mountain Railroad. The first caboose was KS 1905 and was constructed at the Fontana Mill in 1948. The second caboose was KS 1918 and was constructed at the Fontana Mill in 1953. Both cabooses were similar to those used on the Southern Pacific Railroad at that time. Both were bay-window style with ASF Andrew-type four wheel trucks, National coiled spring bearings, and of course used Kaiser ship-type welded steel plate construction. They had swamp cooler air-conditioning and unusually wide bay windows. The windows in KS 1905 were slightly larger than those on KS 1918. Both cabooses were used on a regular basis and one caboose was always at the rear of loaded ore trains from Eagle Mountain to Ferrum and just behind the locomotives on the return trips to Eagle Mountain. When the railroad reduced operations from two to one round trip ore train per day, KS 1905 become the only caboose used and KS 1918 was stored at Ferrum, where it was severely vandalized. In June 1975, KS 1905 received severe frame damage in a switching accident at Eagle Mountain. The maintenance shop at Eagle Mountain started repairs on KS 1905 but it was quickly halted once the damage was determined to be too extensive. At this point, KS 1918 was moved to Eagle Mountain and rebuilt by the maintenance shop. Renumbered as the "new" KS 1905, its metal toolbox and wire alternator cage are from the "original" KS 1905. The rebuilding gave the "new" KS 1905 rubbered molding windows, axle belt-driven alternator, ice box, new water tank, and an air-flush commode. It was painted red with white Kaiser Steel lettering and numbers on the side. The "new" KS 1905 was used on the ore trains until 1983 when trains started operating without cabooses. The "old" KS 1905 was stored at Eagle Mountain until 1983. Since its aborted rebuilding had left it nothing but a steel shell on railroad wheels, it was sold and is now on display at Ragsdale's Desert Center Cafe in Desert Center, California, about 12 miles (19 km) south of Eagle Mountain. As of April 2009, it was still there. The "new" KS 1905 was donated by Kaiser Steel to the Pacific Southwest Railway Museum Association (PSRMA) in June 1984. On January 28, 1985, it was taken to Campo, California by truck since the railroad wasn't operating at the time. Now on display in operating condition, the "new" KS 1905 is the San Diego Railway Museum's primary work-train caboose due to its sturdiness, excellent visibility and air conditioning. It has even carried revenue passengers on occasion.

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This item is part of Desert Center Estate Auction
 Saturday, Nov 2, 2019 | 12:00 PM  Pacific
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Kaiser Steel KS 1905 Caboose
Kaiser Steel KS 1905 Caboose
Lot number: 90
Seller: Grahams I-15 Auctions
Event: Desert Center Estate Auction
Ends: Saturday, November 2 | 12:00 PM  Pacific

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