New Engine at Little Tweetsie

There’s a new engine at Little Tweetsie and the owner (Zeb “DoDah” Banner) has been running it non-stop for the last few days.

The proud new owner of the yet-to-be-named little gas switcher (perhaps a future Thomas the Tank Engine) is 2 year old Zeb “Do-Dah” Banner, the grandson of Greg and Amy Gardner, innkeepers at Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast in Banner Elk, NC and hosts to Little Tweetsie Railroad.

New Engine at Little TweetsieThe new engine at Little Tweetsie, is not new at all. Instead, the little guy started life at a KOA Campground in Durango CO, around 1970. Then was sold to a friend of a friend of a friend, who helped the engine make its way to the Carolinas and Central Carolina Live Steamers and Triad Live Steamers, where it spent several years and underwent some engine changes. Additional linkage and transmission troubles finally brought the engine to Megan and Justin Trivett, at High Country Small Engine Repair, where it received a brand new motor and some much needed tinder loving care.

About a week ago, the “new” engine was picked up by the new owner, 2-year old DoDah Banner and he has begun giving the engine a proper breaking in.

It’s a simple engine with simple throttle system; simply pull the throttle bar back and the engine goes forward. Push the bar and the little guys starts backing down the track.

At only 2 years old, the new engine at Little Tweetsie might have been too fast for little DoDah, but he’s a smart young train lover and has kept his engine under control and well in hand. In fact, the only mishaps have come from full-size passengers receiving rides. It’s easy to displace the riding car, which is a 25-year old Radio Flyer Wagon on bobber caboose trucks.

Zeb has spent about 2 hours a day for the last several days, riding the trains and practicing his trainman skills.

He invites you to join him and his grandfather, for summer train fun at Banner Haven B&B and Little Tweetsie Railroad.