Virtual Layout Tour : Locomotive Facalities

Locomotive Facilities
The Diesel Facility

Diesel Facility

This is the west side of the Diesel Facility seen from Albatross Yard. Photo by Paul Dlugos.

This wide view from 2003 shows the entire structure, fuel storage tanks, and piping system over the Steam Facility leads to the track where the tank cars are unloaded. Photo by James Lauser.

Locomotive Facilities
The Steam Facility

This photo is taken from the Dispatcher’s operating pit. The Dining Car Facility is on the left and the Car Shop is in the the background on the right. New York Central 4-8-4 Niagara #6001 is about to roll forward off of the turntable toward the Coaling Tower. Photo by Timothy McKenna.

Luminance HDR 2.3.0 tonemapping parameters: Operator: V1_Fattal Parameters: Alpha: 1 Beta: 0.95 Color Saturation: 1 Noise Reduction: 0 —— PreGamma: 1

A view of the large Coaling Tower with the Turntable, Dining Car Facility, and back side of Jersey City Terminal in the background. Note the two water stand pipes and the oil storage tank.

A similar photo from 2012 shows a C&O Yellowstone posing next to Thomas and Gordon under the Coaling Tower.

The Garden State Northern has a large locomotive maintenance facility conveniently located between the east end of Albatross Yard and the Jersey City Passenger Terminal. The diesel faclilty was scratchbuilt by former member Jack Mason in 1997, indicated by an engraving over the main doors. It is an extremely detailed two track locomotive shop with elevated platforms and inspection pits inside. It can serve up to eight locomotives at one time. A third track around the building can serve as a runaround, inbound, or outbound track depending on how the hostlers set up the operation. At the west end of the facility is an extensive fueling and sanding station, linked by pipes to a set of large diesel oil storage tanks and the fuel pumping station. These were also built entirely by hand by Jack.

The steam facility boasts a 134 foot long turntable, long enough to turn a Big Boy or a pair of E8’s! Both Albatross Yard and the Jersey City Terminal have direct access to the turntable. The roundhouse has six stalls and numerous garden tracks. The massive coaling tower can dispense coal into locomotive tenders on three different tracks. Coal is unloaded at an elevated dump behind the facility and hoisted up to the very top to fill the tower. A large water tank serves several stand pipes in the facility. An oil tank and separate filling apparatus also serve special oil powered locomotives. Of special note was when our turntable was in dire need of repair and the old plaster cast turntable pit badly out of round, passed member Bill Weisse, a master carpenter using special machinery in his basement, carved the Club a brand new perfectly round wooden turntable pit! The turntable is named in his honor and distinguished with a sign there.

Adjacent to the roundhouse is a facility which cleans, stocks, and prepares meals for dining cars to be placed on outgoing long distance passenger trains. A car shop for light repairs to rolling stock is also part of the complex. An old crane is parked next to the car shop ready to go in the event of an incident out on the line.

Historic Photos

This is an original Virtual Tour photo from the Spring of 1999 taken from the Dispatcher’s operating pit. The tracks leading off to the left are the Albatross switching leads. The tracks in the far left are part of the CNJ Passenger Terminal. This scene looks very different today, especially at the Passenger Terminal.

A shot of the coaling tower from 2002 before any weathering and details were completed.

Diesel Facility at night

This is the east face of the scratchbuilt Diesel Facility. One of the large diesel oil storage tanks is visible in the background to the left.

This older photo from 2002 of the west face shows a lot more of the scratchbuilt detail, as well as some engines being serviced.

Virtual Layout Tour Index
Albatross Yard 
Locomotive Facilities
Jersey City Terminal
PETE Tower