4070 Steam Engine

The former Grand Truck Western 1918 USRA light Mikado (2-8-2) steam locomotive that was featured in the movie “The Natural” starring Robert Redford is currently undergoing restoration. The locomotive may be remembered as the one that ran originally on The Cuyahoga Valley Line as well as at Conneaut Lake Park.

 Help us reach our $1,290,000 goal!

Live Project Updates

Recent progress on the restoration includes removing the studs from the drive cylinders and marking the grid lines on the smoke box for its’ upcoming ultrasonic testing. The individual contracted to perform the testing will also check the tram on the drivers and perform an inspection of the previously repaired crack in the frame after which we can make plans for any necessary repairs in those areas.


July 25, 2022 - 4:00 pm

Volunteers have been working on polishing five spots within each marked grid on the fire box so the ultrasonic testing can be performed later this month.


August 7, 2022 - 2:54 pm
Ken Y

Recently purchased by MRPS is an ultrasonic tester that will enable volunteers to perform testing of five spots in each marked grid. Two volunteers will work together to take readings and record them on a spreadsheet for evaluation.

September 28, 2022 - 12:15 pm
Ken Y.

Volunteers started taking ultrasound readings on the fire box yesterday. Two crews worked simultaneously to take readings and record them by grid and location for insertion into a spreadsheet for evaluation.


October 2, 2022 - 11:40 am
Ken Y

Steam consultant Dan Pluta paid a visit to Midwest earlier this month and along with MRPS representatives formulated a plan to weld repair the frame crack, continue with ultrasonic testing of the fire box and boiler, and decided on the approach for replacing the smoke box.


October 25, 2022 - 6:53 pm
Ken Y

While plans are underway to schedule the repair of the frame crack, work continued on ultrasonic testing and outlining the grids on the boiler for testing also. A detail drawing is being created to form a new smoke box to replace the one still mounted on the locomotive.

January 15, 2023 - 12:00 pm
Ken Y.

4070’s oiler was disassembled for cleaning and inspection only to find the main gear in need of replacement having broken and chipped teeth. The gear was given to Bliel Machine for evaluation, and last weekend they delivered a brand new gear that fit like a glove. The oiler will now receive a thorough cleaning and be re-assembled. It will be put into storage until the locomotive is at a point where it will be re-installed.


February 3, 2023 - 3:00 pm
Ken Y.

Volunteers dis-assembled the oiler and began the task of giving the parts a thorough cleaning and inspection. Parts will be repaired and/or replaced as necessary to put the unit back into reliable working condition.


February 11, 2023 - 6:00 pm
Ken Y.

While plans are underway to begin the weld repair of the crack in the frame, volunteer activities include work on the oiler along with removing broken studs in the cylinders. The locomotive has been pulled back in stall 4 so that the pony truck sits above the drop pit. There, the engine will be supported to allow removal of the truck assembly to facilitate the weld repair.

July 23, 2023 - 9:15 am
Ken Y

After trying multiple methods to remove broken studs, training began using the one deemed most successful with the intent to form multiple teams that could simultaneously on both ends of the cylinder.

July 29, 2023 - 3:27 pm
Ken Y.

While volunteers continue working to remove broken studs from the cylinder faces, a radial arm drill press was moved into stall 4 where it will come in handy for working on parts for the locomotive. Volunteers are occupied with given the drill press a good cleaning and inspection before putting it into service.

August 15, 2023 - 1:09 pm
Ken Y.

Warm dry weather gave volunteers the opportunity to move 4070’s cab from storage to the sandblasting area where it was blasted in preparation for painting with a metal etching primer followed by a finish coat of black. After painting, the wood interior will be reconstructed, and the windows installed. The cab will be put on display as a photo op until it is time to remount it on the locomotive.

August 29, 2023 - 8:41 am
Ken Y.

The last broken stud was removed from the cylinders yesterday after much hard work and perseverance. Next is to chase the internal threads and perform a thorough inspection. Sandblasting of the cab was completed and it was moved inside for some metal work to be followed by applications of heat resistant primer and black paint.

September 24, 2023 - 6:43 pm
Ken Y.

Heat resistant primer has been applied to the cab to prevent rusting while some additional repair work is performed in some areas of the roof and side panels. Holes will be drilled in the new side panels for installation of rivets that will match the original construction.

October 24, 2023 - 11:36 am
Ken Y.

Volunteers removed the coffin feedwater heater from the fireman’s side of the locomotive yesterday. Rust around the studs made it a difficult task but perseverance paid off. Removing the studs proved to be an easier task than removing the studs in the cylinders. The studs will all be replaced.

November 26, 2023 - 8:05 am
Ken Y.

Volunteers removed the three sections of 4070’s pilot to allow for easier access to the pony truck. It also made it easier to climb in and out of the pit which will facilitate repair of the main frame that is scheduled to begin sometime in late Spring or Summer. Some straightening is in order for the pilot sections which still bear signs of the locomotives fall into a pit in Michigan almost 70 years ago. The front coupler was also removed revealing extensive wear to individual components that will require replacement or repair.


February 25, 2024 - 1:27 pm
Ken Y.