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The Trainworld City Steel Works and Duluth Works Part 9

Posted by [email protected] on 23 April, 2016 at 14:05
The Trainworld City Steel Works and Duluth Works Part IX

1970's photograph from the Jeff Borne Collection showing the rolling mills of the Duluth Works from the Gary side worker walk bridge
Rolling mills of the Trainworld City Steel Works from approx the same angle with a Mehina Coal and Chemical train passing

From the open hearth, the hot ingots are taken by ingot train a short distance to the nearby soaking pit furnace building to be reheated to a uniform temperature for rolling.  The Duluth Works soaking pit building had four reheating furnaces, or pits, capable of reheating 96 ingots at a time. The soaking pit building survived until the hot side shut down and was town down in 1979.

1978 Roger Nesje photo showing the Duluth Works soaking pit furnace building at center left just 1 yr prior to demolition.
Diagram of the soaking pit , blooming mill and machine and gear rooms of the rolling mill at Duluth
Spot 4 moves a train filled with hot ingots into the soaking pit building while a crane tends to empty ingot molds outside.
Looking over the soaking pit building of the TCSW, with the open hearth, pig caster, ladle repair bldg, and mat yard all visible. These buildings are "unbuttoned" in this photo.  The goal of the model is to have several of the key buildings able to be "unbuttoned" so that the inner workings can be seen and detailed.  So far, most of the rolling mill is yet to be "detailed", and are just empty shells.
Closer view inside (sorry about the leaf that blew in)

As stated above, the goal of the model project is to include as much of the major buildings to be "unbuttoned" or have the details seen (ie, removeable roofs or walls, etc).  So far, the soaking pit building is the first, and only building of the rolling mills to have this happen yet but others will follow. The soaking pit of the Trainworld City Steel Works is actually a bit different than that of the prototype at Duluth, and this was done to accomodate certain sizing specifics.  The pits are on the opposite side at the TCSW than they would be at Duluth.  So far, the soaking pit building has just been started. All of the structures modeled in are preliminary, or unfinished. The actual furnace pit covers are not correct and I'm unhappy with them, so I might change them to look more like the prototype eventually. The crane isn't done yet, and it's just one of two to be finished.  Theres other details to be added too, but it's work in progress.
Ingots flow right to left.  The 28 inch rail mill was eventually converted to just a 28 inch rolling stand and the adjacent rail finishing mill (located just above the 28 inch mill in this diagram) was eventually converted into a billet finishing mill.  In 1922, a rod mill was attached to the bar finishing mill and made the rods that fed the wire mill and fence post department, which was built at the end of the merchant mill building. Fence posts became one of Duluth's biggest selling products.
View of the rolling mills from the materials yard at the TCSW's.

Looking at the rolling mill buildings from near the switching yards. The longest building at right is the merchant mill. The two tracks at left take finished materials out of the mills.

The end of the rolling mills contain the shipping warehouses
The tracks inbetween the mills take the finished materials from the mills and also deliver various equipment. Eventually, a yard crane will bridge between the two sides and extra rolls will be stored here as well.

Finished materials leave the Trainworld City Steel Works via these tracks to Railton Yard. There, they are switched and classed and attached to various trains for transport to wherever they may need to go. 

Categories: Operations