Once every 15 years, steam locomotives must undergo an extensive set of inspections and repairs called the 1472 Service Day Inspection. Ventura County Railway No. 2, which has operated at the Museum for 40 years, began its 1472 Service Day Inspection in 2021. This is a long, labor-intensive, and costly process that will take several years and $200,000-$300,000 to complete. Thanks to generous donors and the volunteers on our steam locomotive crew, the locomotive’s overhaul is proceeding at an excellent pace.
We need your help to complete the inspection! The museum has raised about $225,000 towards the cost of the Second Century Overhaul. You—an individual, a family, an interested group, or a business—can sponsor a specific locomotive part. Donations of material items and professional services are also gratefully accepted.
Sponsors will be recognized in the donor roll on this website; in a donor roll displayed next to the locomotive; and in the Museum’s newsletter, the Gazette. We are pleased to present some excellent thank-you gifts and experiences corresponding to each level of giving, detailed below.
The Southern California Railway Museum is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, and all donations are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law. Sponsorships are symbolic, not literal—all donations will be used wherever they are most needed for the Second Century Overhaul. Donations can be anonymous and donors can forgo their thank-you gifts, so that more of their donations can benefit the locomotive. Any funds not used for the overhaul will go to support steam locomotives at the Museum.
Thank you for helping keep steam alive! If you would like to stay up-to-date on our progress, you can sign up for our newsletter, The Headlight, by submitting an online form here.
Friend of the Locomotive: Donations below $147
Friends of the Locomotive are kindhearted supporters who care about the future of Ventura County Railway No. 2. You can make a custom donation in the amount you wish; add a note to your donation when you submit it. You will be credited in the donor roll displayed next to the locomotive, on this website, and in the Museum’s Gazette.
1472 Club: $147
The 1472 Club derives its name from the major inspection that the locomotive will undergo: the 1472-Service-Day Inspection. You will receive a 1472 Club lapel pin suitable for proudly wearing on a cap, shirt, or jacket. You will also receive a beautiful thank-you card with a handwritten note. All higher donation levels will also receive a 1472 Club lapel pin and a handwritten note.
Tube Sponsor: $262
The 157 tubes carry hot gases through the boiler. These hot gases heat the water surrounding the tubes, causing it to boil into steam. All of the tubes will be removed and replaced with new tubes during the Second Century Overhaul. The donation level of $262 was chosen symbolically—it reflects the locomotive’s wheel arrangement, 2-6-2. There are 157 sponsorships available at this level. Donors are welcome to sponsor more than one tube at a time.
You will receive a beautiful acrylic photo block with an individual, personalized message of thanks—an eye-catching addition to a table or desk.
Flue Sponsor: $550
The 26 flues run through the boiler and carry hot gases in a similar manner to the tubes. However, the flues are much larger in diameter, and contain within them the superheater elements. The hot gases in the flues serve two purposes—they boil water into steam in the boiler, and superheat that steam in the superheater elements. All of the flues will be inspected during the Second Century Overhaul, and some may be replaced. There are 26 sponsorships available at this level.
You will receive an eye-catching pair of acrylic photograph blocks. One block features an image of the locomotive in operation, taken by Photographer-in-Residence Tim Johnson. The other shows a schematic diagram of the locomotive and bears an individual, personalized message of thanks.
Superheater Sponsor: $1000
The 26 superheater elements carry steam from the boiler back through the flues in order to absorb more heat into the steam and make the locomotive more powerful. The superheater elements will be removed and inspected during the overhaul. There are 26 sponsorships available at this level.
You will receive the same pair of acrylic photograph blocks as Flue Sponsors. You will also receive an invitation for two people (over 21 years of age) to attend a wine tasting presented by Sommelier-in-Residence Randy Parks.
We will happily arrange alternative thank-you gifts for Superheater Sponsors who are unable or prefer not to attend the wine tasting.
Special Part Sponsor: $5000
Many large components on the locomotive will require inspection, repair, or replacement during the Second Century Overhaul. The following components are currently available for sponsorship:
- Throttle rod replacement
- Brake valve inspection and certification
- Left cylinder inspection
- Left piston valve overhaul
The list of available Special Part Sponsorships will be updated as the overhaul proceeds.
Each Special Part Sponsor will receive an invitation for two people, age 16 or over, to take part in a special day-long Engineer Experience. You will spend the day operating two different diesel-electric locomotives, haul a real train with cars, and enjoy a delicious lunch and all-around fun day with the steam crew and other Special Part Sponsors. You will also receive all the thank-you gifts associated with the Superheater Sponsor level, and will be credited in the Donor Rolls on this website and next to the locomotive.
We will happily arrange alternative thank- you gifts for Special Part Sponsors who are unable or prefer not to participate in the Engineer Experience or wine tasting.
CAMPAIGN LEADERSHIP SPONSOR: DONATIONS OF $25,000 OR MORE
Donating at this level signifies generous and passionate support for the Museum’s steam program. If you are interested in donating at this level, we would love to speak with you directly before you make your gift. The steam crew will work with you to create a meaningful and memorable thank-you gift or experience. Corporations are especially welcome to give at this level.
Custom Donation Amounts
Donations are welcome in any amount. Donors who give any amount above $147 will receive the thank-you gifts of the highest donation level that their donation exceeds.
Donate Goods or Services
Donations of material items or professional services are greatly appreciated. You will receive the recognition and thank-you gifts appropriate to your donation.
Helpful material items include:
- Boiler tubes and flues
- Copper gaskets
- Raw materials stock of steel, brass, bronze, and copper
Helpful professional services include:
- Tank repair and lining
- Machine shop work
- Computer drafting
- Industrial crane and lifting services
- Gauge calibration
- Pamphlet printing
If you are considering donating goods or services, please send us a brief message using the contact form on this website—click the link below. We will be glad to get in touch with you!
Become a Volunteer
Do you want to get hands-on with the locomotive? We’d love to have you! The steam crew is an all-volunteer group, and you don’t need any prior skills or knowledge—we can guide and teach you. Send us a brief message so we can contact you.