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More Powerful Steam Shovel Uses
Sparky's Powerful Steam Shovel hooked up to modified Acme Wagon

Shop photo of my Powerful Steam Shovel hooked up to my Acme Wagon, which was modified with the addition of seats and back and head rests to make it legal to drive on the sidewalks to take us to the ice cream store at the gas station around the corner and down the street.

Sparky, Sniffy and Rusty with some cash headed for the ice cream store

The photo above shows Sniffy, Rusty and me with 2 bucks worth of cash, headed up the driveway on our way to the ice cream store at the gas station down the street and around the corner.

Unfortunately, something jammed in the remote control of the Stupid Steam Shovel, and it took off right up the side of a big rock, and we got wrecked reel bad and I almost lost the 2 bucks worth of cash when the wind blew right after the wreck, which is shown in the photo below.  

Sparky, Sniffy and Rusty after the devastating wreck

Sparky's Back Yard
Page 5
by Sparky

The Split Rock City Railroad

Featuring Construction and Operational Information About the Railroad

Split Rock City, July 31, 2003.  Construction continues with the design and implementation of more retaining walls.  Lots of them!

Jim saw a retaining wall along some bike trail, and it was just madWhat the cut screen looked like before bending into a little boxe out of wire boxes filled with rocks, so he bought a roll of 1/4" hardware cloth screen and cut it into pieces about 6" square.  Then he cut out the corners so it ended up like a plus sign, like shown in the picture at right.  Then he made a little box that he could put each piece of cut screen into and then hit it with another cut piece of wood to bend it into almost a box.  Then he just bent the wires that were sticking out of each side so the box would stay together and make the retaining wall boxes filled with gravel shown in photo #1 below.

Photo 2 shows a stone wall that will hold up the upper track, and the wooden cribbing below it will retain the roadbed for the lower track.

Photo 3 shows my Powerful Steam Shovel excavating the big hole for the big, 2-track trestle, while photo 4 shows the completed excavation.

Photo 5 shows me giving Sniffy a lesson in how to use your cowboy gun for a hammer while driving nails to complete the big trestle.

Photo 6 shows the big trestle after installation, and my Powerful Steam Shovel has just completed the backfilling operation so it will not move around when heavy trains begin running over it.  Photo 7 shows Sniffy and me resting on the back of the Powerful Steam Shovel after the work was completed, while we were getting ready to dig out for the cut tile retaining wall that will support one of the tracks.  Photo 8 is an overview to better show all the work we have completed due to the help of the Powerful Steam Shovel.

Photos 9 and 10 show some of the retaining walls made from tiles that have been sawed into little blocks, while 11 and 12 show the Diamond blade wet saw that we use to cut larger tiles into those little blocks.

Sparky's Backyard Photo Album

Wire cribbing boxes
1. Here's the wire cribbing boxes

Stone and wood cribbing on east side
2. Cribbing on east side

Sparky with his Powerful Steam Shovel excavating for the large trestle
3. Excavating for big trestle

Powerful Steam Shovel completing excavation for big trestle
4. Completed trestle excavation

Sparky showing Sniffy how to use a cowboy gun for a hammer
5. Lesson in using gun for a hammer

Sparky's Powerful Steam Shovel backfilling around trestle base
6. Backfilling trestle base

Completed and installed 2-track trestle
7. Completed 2-track trestle

Overview of finished trestle
8. Overview of the big trestle

Little brick retaining wall, completed and backfilled
9. Cut tile retaining wall 
Retaining wall central, waiting for still more walls to be built
10. Retaining wall central
Tile saw used to cut Saltillo Tiles to make retaining wall blocks
11.  Tile saw used to cut tiles
Wagon loaded with little bricks cut from larger tiles
12. Wagon load of cut bricks
That's about it fer now.   I'll have some more pitchers in a couple of days and then I'll add them to the album on the next page, that's not written yet. --Sparky
Drawing of powerful BatterySparky's
Ratings of Batteries 
My Powerful Steam Shovel uses 4 AA Batteries, and it does pretty good with them.  It gets about one of Gloria's wheelbarrow loads of dirt per set of batteries.

I decided to see if any other brands of batteries perform any better and last longer, so here is what I found out:

All 4 brands that I know about performed about the same as far as speed of digging was concerned, but 1 brand seemed to be able to load more dirt before running out of lecktrick lecktrick-city  power.

If I could name the brands, or if the manufacturers was willing to pay me some cash to brag about their batteries, maybe I could tell you the names, but that is not the case, so jest let me tell you that the best one loaded about 1 Gloria wheelbarrow and 3 Sparky wheelbarrows.

2 other brands loaded about 1 Gloria wheelbarrow.

The worst brand, which I found 4 of them in the parking lot at the grocery store, only loaded about 2 Sparky wheelbarrows, so fer that reason I would recommend against wasting your time even picking up any of those you happen to find in any parking lot.



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