NSWGR steam locomotive numbering, I was wondering

 
Topic moved from Model Railways - General Discussions by dthead on 31 Jan 2014 14:29
  Fireman Dave Chief Commissioner

Location: Shh, I'm hiding
They weren't so much unwanted, but not normally avaliable for general traffic.

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  wurx Lithgovian Ambassador-at-Large

Location: The mystical lost principality of Daptovia
They weren't so much unwanted, but not normally avaliable for general traffic.
Fireman Dave

Thanks for the extra info FD; my previous post used the unwanted word, as I'm fairly sure that's how Eardley & Stephens described those locos.

If/when I can find the book again, I'll find the relevant passage & post it.
  M636C Minister for Railways

Unwanted locos copped an X classification, IIRC what I read in the Newnes chapter of The Shale Railways of NSW. Mention is made of some that were used in the construction of the WVR, including one Manning Wardle (I think Confused) that was apparently so undesirable to the Department that it was slugged with an XX tag.
wurx

My article in the March 2010 ARH covers the introduction of the Duplicate Stock in 1891.

The basic intention was to take the older locomotives off the books (removing them from the "Capital StocK") so that interest would no longer need to be paid on the loans for their purchase and importantly, replacement locomotives could be purchased from revenue rather than raising capital through loans for the acquisition.

Duplicate Stock locomotives had the "X" appended to their number, because by definition, the number (the place in the Capital Stock) was reused for the replacement purchased with revenue funds.

Duplicate Stock locomotives could be used, but funds could not be spent on them for repairs (probably interpreted as workshop repairs rather than running shed repairs). The statement was made that Duplicate Stock locomotives "should be allowed to wear out" and then be taken out of service.

The problem I mentioned earlier regarding the Vulcan Foundry saddle tanks was that they had been put in the Duplicate Stock but were needed for working branch lines where the heavier "replacement" locomotives (E and I classes) could not run owing to the light track. So they had to be given new numbers in the Capital Stock so that workshop repairs could be carried out.

So it was all an accounting problem.

I know that some locomotives were given two "X"s but I'm not sure of the significance. I'm pretty sure that it didn't mean that there were now three locomotives with that number as in:

127, 127X and 127XX.

Clearly it implied that the locomotives were even more restricted, possibly in what work could be done to them (say; very limited running repairs) but I really don't know.

As I pointed out earlier, a Manning Wardle 0-6-0 ST moved to the Duplicate Stock in 1891, 394X, was renumbered 1001 in 1924, so it spent 33 years in the Duplicate Stock, still working. Clearly it hadn't "worn out" at all quickly and one feels that it must have had some workshop attention in all that time.

While Gifford Eardley used the term "unwanted", he was known for his colourful descriptions and this might not have reflected the official view.

Many locomotives spent time in the Duplicate Stock on a temporary basis, G class 2-4-0s awaiting rebuild to C/G 4-4-0, and A class 0-6-0s awaiting Belpaire boilers for example. This avoided interest payments being made on them when it was known that they'd be stored for some time awaiting their turn in workshops. In these cases, the original number was restored, although one A class got a new number when it returned from a stint as a contractor's locomotive because its old number had already been reallocated.

M636C
  studdo Station Master

Very very interesting and informative. On another point, why we're the 38s "38" and not 37? When I first became interested in steam in the early 70s my father told me that his father, who was a fitter at Eveleigh for 30 years until his premature death in 1943, told him it was in case more 36s were built. I have often whether it was because there doubt Mr Hartigan would extend the initial order of 5 38 class engines or if the 1933 proposal to convert the 36 class to 4-6-2s, like half the 30 class were converted to tender engines. I tend to think not the latter as the tender 30 class were never reclassified.
  studdo Station Master

Very very interesting and informative. On another point, why we're the 38s "38" and not 37? When I first became interested in steam in the early 70s my father told me that his father, who was a fitter at Eveleigh for 30 years until his premature death in 1943, told him it was in case more 36s were built. I have often wondered whether it was because there was doubt Mr Hartigan would extend the initial order of 5 38 class engines and therefore more 36s might be built or if the 1933 proposal to convert the 36 class to 4-6-2s, like half the 30 class were converted to tender engines, might be revived. I tend to think not the latter as the tender 30 class were never reclassified.
  M636C Minister for Railways

Very very interesting and informative. On another point, why we're the 38s "38" and not 37? When I first became interested in steam in the early 70s my father told me that his father, who was a fitter at Eveleigh for 30 years until his premature death in 1943, told him it was in case more 36s were built. I have often wondered whether it was because there was doubt Mr Hartigan would extend the initial order of 5 38 class engines and therefore more 36s might be built or if the 1933 proposal to convert the 36 class to 4-6-2s, like half the 30 class were converted to tender engines, might be revived. I tend to think not the latter as the tender 30 class were never reclassified.
studdo

The order for the 38 class was initiated by Sir Raymond Purves of Clyde who wanted an order for five more 36 class to retain their workers through a slow period. The NSWGR design office decided that a new design would be built.

As you say, it is possible that the 3700s were regarded as reserved for more 36 class, or someone still hoped that the 30 class tender locomotives would be renumbered eventually as they should have been in 1928. Once the 36 class received new steel inner fireboxes in 1934 and were painted green to indicate their greater reliability, the conversion to 4-6-2 wasn't required any more.

I think the 30 class were not renumbered because they would have been the first conversion after the 1924 renumbering and the concept of changing the numbers was foreign since locomotive numbers, rather than class letters, did not change due to conversion before 1924.

The 30T class were superheated from 1940 onward, and since that increased their power to roughly that of the 32 class, and if this superheating proposal preceded the 38 class, the 37 class might have been reserved for the superheated 30T, but in fact the 30 continued to cover what was for traffic purposes three different types.

M636C
  a6et Minister for Railways

The order for the 38 class was initiated by Sir Raymond Purves of Clyde who wanted an order for five more 36 class to retain their workers through a slow period. The NSWGR design office decided that a new design would be built.

As you say, it is possible that the 3700s were regarded as reserved for more 36 class, or someone still hoped that the 30 class tender locomotives would be renumbered eventually as they should have been in 1928. Once the 36 class received new steel inner fireboxes in 1934 and were painted green to indicate their greater reliability, the conversion to 4-6-2 wasn't required any more.

I think the 30 class were not renumbered because they would have been the first conversion after the 1924 renumbering and the concept of changing the numbers was foreign since locomotive numbers, rather than class letters, did not change due to conversion before 1924.

The 30T class were superheated from 1940 onward, and since that increased their power to roughly that of the 32 class, and if this superheating proposal preceded the 38 class, the 37 class might have been reserved for the superheated 30T, but in fact the 30 continued to cover what was for traffic purposes three different types.

M636C
M636C

While the data book is not all the correct in some areas, it along with other sources have the 37series reserved for ""Proposed"" conversion of 36cl 4-6-0 to the pacific 4-6-2 wheel arrangement.  Personally I could not see any real benefit in that proposal, as the belpair pigs in most respects matched the 38c' in different districts, worst part with them was their rough riding & some more than others tendency to pull the fires.  On the short south, the took the same goods load as 38, standard goods & 59cl, with length limitation though.

The superheated 30T in general were only allocated the same load & conditions as the saturated versions, although capable of a 32cl load & other conditions, they rarely met them without special approval was given, & instructions issued to enginemen.
  M636C Minister for Railways

While the data book is not all the correct in some areas, it along with other sources have the 37series reserved for ""Proposed"" conversion of 36cl 4-6-0 to the pacific 4-6-2 wheel arrangement. Personally I could not see any real benefit in that proposal, as the belpair pigs in most respects matched the 38c' in different districts, worst part with them was their rough riding & some more than others tendency to pull the fires. On the short south, the took the same goods load as 38, standard goods & 59cl, with length limitation though.

The superheated 30T in general were only allocated the same load & conditions as the saturated versions, although capable of a 32cl load & other conditions, they rarely met them without special approval was given, & instructions issued to enginemen.
a6et

For those not familiar with the history of the 36 class, although it was a good basic design, it had serious problems with the inner firebox. This followed contemporary USA designs and was radially stayed for the crown sheet. However, the inner firebox was copper rather than steel and it was subject to additional stresses due to the different rates of expansion of copper and steel made worse by effects of the angular staying.

By 1931, this came to a head and it was reported that only twelve of the seventy five locomotives were "counted as working" and a new design of steel inner firebox with direct staying was developed to replace the original design. These were adopted for the whole class from 1934 and the modified locomotives were painted green.

During this period, at least two different designs were developed to convert the 36 class using different designs of boiler. The first, often associated with the "37 class" had a wide firebox boiler otherwise similar the the existing 36 class boiler, but with a combustion chamber and longer tubes.

Another design used a 57 class boiler which required a four wheel trailing truck but retained the cylinders and driving wheels of the 36 class. I suspect an entirely new frame would have been used.

Some confusion has concerned a locomotive diagram produced by The Superheater Company for a 4-6-2 generally in the style of a NSW locomotive with a 36 class style cab numbered 3701. This was basically advertising for their products, and included most of their equipment including an Elesco feed water heater, but this drawing has subsequently been confused with a genuine NSWGR proposal for the rebuilding of the 36 class.

However, once the steel firebox was adopted, there were no further serious proposals to rebuild the 36 class as a 4-6-2 type.

M636C
  studdo Station Master

Thanks very much for that, makes sense
  a6et Minister for Railways

For those not familiar with the history of the 36 class, although it was a good basic design, it had serious problems with the inner firebox. This followed contemporary USA designs and was radially stayed for the crown sheet. However, the inner firebox was copper rather than steel and it was subject to additional stresses due to the different rates of expansion of copper and steel made worse by effects of the angular staying.

By 1931, this came to a head and it was reported that only twelve of the seventy five locomotives were "counted as working" and a new design of steel inner firebox with direct staying was developed to replace the original design. These were adopted for the whole class from 1934 and the modified locomotives were painted green.

During this period, at least two different designs were developed to convert the 36 class using different designs of boiler. The first, often associated with the "37 class" had a wide firebox boiler otherwise similar the the existing 36 class boiler, but with a combustion chamber and longer tubes.

Another design used a 57 class boiler which required a four wheel trailing truck but retained the cylinders and driving wheels of the 36 class. I suspect an entirely new frame would have been used.

Some confusion has concerned a locomotive diagram produced by The Superheater Company for a 4-6-2 generally in the style of a NSW locomotive with a 36 class style cab numbered 3701. This was basically advertising for their products, and included most of their equipment including an Elesco feed water heater, but this drawing has subsequently been confused with a genuine NSWGR proposal for the rebuilding of the 36 class.

However, once the steel firebox was adopted, there were no further serious proposals to rebuild the 36 class as a 4-6-2 type.

M636C
M636C

I have a copy of an early Data book put out by the NSWGR, rather than the later PTC version but I think it also shows a fairly comprehensive list of steam loco's that were used by the NSWGR as well as proposed, the pacific type 36 was shown in the book & listed as 3701, as all now know it never eventuated.

As I said & based on my numerous working of the belpair pigs, as well as 38cl, I would say from my perspective & that is all I am basing it on, I much preferred the pig over a 38cl any day, that is with drivers who were experienced in working pigs, which I am in the main thankful for, but there were a couple of exceptions.

I would perhaps assume, rightfully or wrongfully that if the 37cl proposal had been shown in some official document which has caused the proposal to show up in what is or seems to be an accepted though abandoned proposal, that the 37cl numbering had been taken up, & therefore unavailable.  Of course supposition & pure speculation though.
  M636C Minister for Railways

I have a copy of an early Data book put out by the NSWGR, rather than the later PTC version but I think it also shows a fairly comprehensive list of steam loco's that were used by the NSWGR as well as proposed, the pacific type 36 was shown in the book & listed as 3701, as all now know it never eventuated.

As I said & based on my numerous working of the belpair pigs, as well as 38cl, I would say from my perspective & that is all I am basing it on, I much preferred the pig over a 38cl any day, that is with drivers who were experienced in working pigs, which I am in the main thankful for, but there were a couple of exceptions.

I would perhaps assume, rightfully or wrongfully that if the 37cl proposal had been shown in some official document which has caused the proposal to show up in what is or seems to be an accepted though abandoned proposal, that the 37cl numbering had been taken up, & therefore unavailable. Of course supposition & pure speculation though.
a6et


Another possibility is that the 38 class may have been regarded as an experiment at the time and the 37 class was left to provide space for a more conventional alternative if the "advanced" 38 class did not live up to expectations.

There was also the Lima 4-8-4 design, which looked a bit like an NZR K class scaled up to standard gauge, with the large cylinders angled steeply to clear passenger platforms. This was considered seriously during WWII but as a new design could not be built in the USA during wartime. So 25 more 38 and 25 more 57 class were ordered by 1943 with cast frames to the existing designs coming from the USA. But the Lima 4-8-4, offered about the time the 38 class design was finalised, could be another candidate for the 37 class numbering (although the Lima enquiry number on the drawing was "3801").

Had WW II not occurred, it is possible that the 38 class would have remained a class of five locomotives only, if the change to diesels had still taken place in the early 1950s.

M636C
  a6et Minister for Railways

Another possibility is that the 38 class may have been regarded as an experiment at the time and the 37 class was left to provide space for a more conventional alternative if the "advanced" 38 class did not live up to expectations.

There was also the Lima 4-8-4 design, which looked a bit like an NZR K class scaled up to standard gauge, with the large cylinders angled steeply to clear passenger platforms. This was considered seriously during WWII but as a new design could not be built in the USA during wartime. So 25 more 38 and 25 more 57 class were ordered by 1943 with cast frames to the existing designs coming from the USA. But the Lima 4-8-4, offered about the time the 38 class design was finalised, could be another candidate for the 37 class numbering (although the Lima enquiry number on the drawing was "3801").

Had WW II not occurred, it is possible that the 38 class would have remained a class of five locomotives only, if the change to diesels had still taken place in the early 1950s.

M636C
M636C

Fair points however.

By the mid years of WW2 the aged fleet of locomotives were well on the way of needing more modern engines, a reason I think behind the extension of the 38 & 57class order, another aspect also by that time the tide of the war was turning, & perhaps the knowledge of powers that many surviving ex servicemen may need work here.

By that time I would suspect that with 3801 finally in service, & having proved a success, the likelihood of local manufacture of new loco's was a fair decision, the primary failure perhaps was with the 58cl design, being based on an expanded "goods type" passenger locomotive with untried changes.  The sorrow of the 58cl is that just as it was proving itself they were withdrawn rather than many of the war weary standard goods engines. A cheap modification to put 6 wheel bogies on the tenders could have had them on the west without problems to work between Lithgow - OGE, & have the reallocated garratts on the north or south. Also most of the garratts at that time were still light types thus could have been well used on the NW lines rather than the few that did run out there.

The thought of diesels in the war years, I doubt was much of a consideration, after all even the 40cl were an experiment to see if they would work, & it really wasn't until the 44's arrived that a real decision was taken to fully dieselise.  Certainly the coal strike of the late 40's did not help the cause of the steam enthusiasts.

I guess the same situation could have helped with using Lima or Baldwyn imports based on our loading gauges & perhaps even the better 59cl could have come a bit sooner to relieve the motive power problem, however there was & still is the money issue, only need to get smoky Joe to asses it.

Would a 4-8-4 do any better than the 38c (seriously) if they were inherently the same, with the extra driving wheel being the primary difference?  I know that there were serious studies on the NYC Hudsons, larger engine, but problem I guess was the overall size & would have needed a larger TT at Albury, but with the new RH at Junee being built, a Hudson or similar could readily have worked from Sydney to Junee with the 36cl taking over from there, the only trains that really need more than the pigs was the daylignt when it went to Albury & perhaps the interstate expresses. The mails were seriously reduced at Junee so did not need any more than the pig.

If assistance was need to Kapooka, then the larger engine could have gone to Kapooka with an Engine change there, taking only minimal extra time.

All wonderful dreaming isn't it.  But one can readily wonder.  What If.
  M636C Minister for Railways

Purchasing of the British WD 2-8-2s would have been a possibility, both for the NSWGR and for VR and SAR. Only 200 of these were built to standard gauge originally, but hundreds more to a modified broad (1676mm) gauge design were built for India as AWD and CWD types. The equivalent narrow gauge locomotives were built for Queensland, but it appears that only the smaller and less useful USATC 2-8-0 was offered to Australia, since they were in production for the European theatre at the time and the 2-8-2s only entered production for India later.

It is probably worth disposing of a myth regarding the 59 class now. These were not "in stock" and delayed while a new tender was designed. They were delayed owing to a serious steel shortage resulting from the unexpected impact of the Korean war. There were no standard gauge 2-8-2s sitting around and there hadn't been since the first batch were shipped in 1942.

What was offered to Australia (and anybody else) were the Russian 2-10-0s left over after the breakdown of relationships with Stalin post WWII. Some of these were rebuilt and sold to Finland. They would not have fitted the NSW loading gauge and might have had trouble on main line curves. But these were indeed offered, but the NSW Government decided to order new oil burning 2-8-2s from the USA as a hedge against coal strikes, expecting early delivery but having to wait (as did any other customers) owing to the war.

The 59 class had cast frames, the only others of this type with that feature being a batch for Portugal built by Alco about the same time.

To get back to the 4-8-4. The big advantage was the extra driving axle and they would have hauled the Flyer up Cowan more reliably in wet weather. They had a lateral motion device on the leading coupled axle (like the SAR 520) but they were bigger and heavier than the 520. They would have allowed the running of fast freight trains that only came with the 40 class.

Heavier mail trains could have run without bank engines, maybe even between Valley Heights and Katoomba and up Cowan. The NSWGR would have had a modern mixed traffic locomotive.

However, it is clear that some people in the NSWGR design section didn't want the 4-8-4. The (redrawn) diagram that appears in Craig Mackey's 57 and 58 book shows taller boiler mountings and a height of 14'6", while the original Lima drawing in my posession (from C.A. Cardew originally) shows a more acceptable height of 14'0". I can only assume that this change was part of a scheme to sabotage the Lima proposal.

M636C
  petan Chief Commissioner

Location: Waiting to see a zebra using a zebra crossing!
Sitting here soaking it all up and many thanks for the very detailed input Smile
  studdo Station Master

Reading all these comments makes me realise how little I know but the mentions of proposals like the 4-6-2 36 class conversion and 4-8-4 reminds me of something I remember from working with people like Keith Morris, Jack and John Harwood, Bruce Saunders, Keith King and many others at Enfield in the early 70s. Among the many silly things we'd talk about over a cup of tea (always made by Keith Morris the best tea maker at Enfield  - it's in Roundhouse) someone (might have been Ed Kain but not sure) came up the purely speculative idea of a subject for a book: Locomotives that never were - in other words, ideas and proposed engines that never saw the light of day, like the 2-8-2 tank engine and express garrett. You could fill a book with all that, I would have thought.
  Showtime Chief Train Controller

Please keep up the conversation on any NSW steam locos.
This is all very entertaining from you knowledgable people.
  M636C Minister for Railways

We are straying a bit from the nominal topic of NSWGR numbering.

But while thinking about WW II, while NSW missed out on any new locomotives, and only finished the first additional 38 in December 1945, one acquisition had a noticeable effect.

These were the US Army GE "44 ton" locomotives that were delivered as standard locomotives for use in the USA. Later units were built for use in more restricted clearances, and these ended up in Pakistan among other places.

But ours were straight American units, and early photos show them on the docks, presumably in Darling Harbour with handrails bent out of the way to try to fit the loading gauge, but no other changes.

When they emerged from Eveleigh, the letters "USA" were painted out, the offending handrails had been removed, the knuckle couplers had gone and buffers and screw couplers fitted. The cab roof had been cut down and new smaller cab windows installed.

But the numbers remained.

These were 7920-7923, in a US Army series used for various types of diesel locomotive.

Nominally intended for an ammunition factory at Ropes Creek, they ended up as Sydney Yard shunters, and the two not passed to the Commonwealth (again nominally for use at Woomera but more often seen in Port Pirie and Port Augusta) remained as Sydney Yard shunters into the 1970s.

But those two, 7920 and 7923 became known as 79 class, conveniently well above any allocated numbers (unlike the QR 2-8-2 locomotives, all of whose three digit US Army numbers duplicated those of existing locomotives).

When diesels came in numbers, they were numbered from 4001, but the two wartime units had so established themselves that dedicated diesel shunting locomotives were numbered from 7001 upward, forming a series with the original two whose pretty much random numbers had started a trend. (I know that electric 7100 muddied the waters a little in that respect, but the original 7101 fitted the pattern).

The 79 class was a success, and inspired the 41 class as an extension of the concept. The 41 class suffered from the inexperience of their designers, but performed good work in the hands of sympathetic crews, being able to replace 50 and 53 classes on suburban goods work on their good days.

The numbering reflected that the 41 was intended to haul trains, if only in the suburban area, while the 79s and their successors with similar numbers were seen as yard shunters.

M636C
  a6et Minister for Railways

We are straying a bit from the nominal topic of NSWGR numbering.

But while thinking about WW II, while NSW missed out on any new locomotives, and only finished the first additional 38 in December 1945, one acquisition had a noticeable effect.

These were the US Army GE "44 ton" locomotives that were delivered as standard locomotives for use in the USA. Later units were built for use in more restricted clearances, and these ended up in Pakistan among other places.

But ours were straight American units, and early photos show them on the docks, presumably in Darling Harbour with handrails bent out of the way to try to fit the loading gauge, but no other changes.

When they emerged from Eveleigh, the letters "USA" were painted out, the offending handrails had been removed, the knuckle couplers had gone and buffers and screw couplers fitted. The cab roof had been cut down and new smaller cab windows installed.

But the numbers remained.

These were 7920-7923, in a US Army series used for various types of diesel locomotive.

Nominally intended for an ammunition factory at Ropes Creek, they ended up as Sydney Yard shunters, and the two not passed to the Commonwealth (again nominally for use at Woomera but more often seen in Port Pirie and Port Augusta) remained as Sydney Yard shunters into the 1970s.

But those two, 7920 and 7923 became known as 79 class, conveniently well above any allocated numbers (unlike the QR 2-8-2 locomotives, all of whose three digit US Army numbers duplicated those of existing locomotives).

When diesels came in numbers, they were numbered from 4001, but the two wartime units had so established themselves that dedicated diesel shunting locomotives were numbered from 7001 upward, forming a series with the original two whose pretty much random numbers had started a trend. (I know that electric 7100 muddied the waters a little in that respect, but the original 7101 fitted the pattern).

The 79 class was a success, and inspired the 41 class as an extension of the concept. The 41 class suffered from the inexperience of their designers, but performed good work in the hands of sympathetic crews, being able to replace 50 and 53 classes on suburban goods work on their good days.

The numbering reflected that the 41 was intended to haul trains, if only in the suburban area, while the 79s and their successors with similar numbers were seen as yard shunters.

M636C
M636C

41cl were the only engine that could make one feel sea sick while moving & when stopped after being returned to idle.
  M636C Minister for Railways

I think Col and I are both enjoying this, but he hasn't given me  any clues this time.

While not strictly numbering, I thought we could discuss "Standard Goods" locomotives.

Post World War II this description appeared in references to locomotive loads for superheated Locomotives of the 50, 53 and 55 classes and the term was used as if it had always applied.

Let's look at the classes as they were:

The 50 class had been the T class introduced in 1896 as a British interpretation of the Baldwin 2-8-0s and a superheated prototype came from Beyer Peacock in 1911.

The 53 class originated as the TF class in 1912 (from T class with Flanged driving wheels). These were a modification of the T class following the ideas of E.E.Lucy, a CME brought in from the English Great Western Railway. The new features were a larger tapered boiler and articulated connecting rods,  both features being similar to GWR practice but differing in some critical details that affected their success in NSW. The TF first appeared with a smokebox superheater which improved economy but suffered from rapid corrosion from condensing exhaust gases and was abandoned in favour of the more complex and expensive Schmidt superheater.

The need for additional motive power just before during the First World War resulted in new superheated T class being ordered from North British alongside further TF class being built by Clyde and Eveleigh. This can be seen from the interspersed pre 1924 numbers.

At the end of World War I an improved TF class with Southern valve gear was built as the K class from 1918 onward, becoming the 55 in 1924, but by the end of production the flanged coupled wheels and articulated connecting rods had been found to give a poor ride and increase track forces in curves. The tapered boiler was not regarded as an overall success either.

So by 1937 a new standard boiler was developed that looked like the parallel T class boiler but had the wider water legs and slightly smaller grate area of the tapered boiler. A 53 class was fitted with the new boiler that year and was thus the first "Standard Goods" locomotive. The coupled wheels were modified to the T class arrangement with conventional connecting rods and flangeless intermediate coupled and driving wheels.

So a 53 as rebuilt was almost identical to a 50 class with the new standard boiler, except for the longer coupled wheelbase.

For whatever reason, the official diagram weights of the two types were shown as the same as both types with the original boiler, although the T class would be slightly heavier due to the larger volume of water in the firebox and the 53 class lighter since the smaller firebox would weigh less as would the smaller volume of water. In fact the two types should have weighed much the same.

The 55 class had the same modifications but retained the different valve gear.

During WWII the standard boilers were fitted to many 50, 53 and 55 class locomotives, some of which had been withdrawn during the 1930s and some were superheated for the first time during this period.

I can't recall having ever seen a tapered boiler on a 53 or 55 class, so by the 1960s the process of standardisation was effectively complete. Even non superheater standard boilers were built....

M636C
  a6et Minister for Railways

M

A very interesting history lesson but being more of a person who was in the cab, I can only comment on them in that way.

Basically speaking, I did not find any great difference between the 3 of course the snotty nose types were different as they tended to be lighter on their feet & more readily prone to slip than the other types, I also never found them being worked harder then half regulator as going to much past that point they would lift the water more readily as well as slip, just worked out a bit more on the screw. Much like the QJ's of Jingpeng were worked.

Of the TF's, those with self cleaning smokeboxes tended to steam better but were terribly dirty, the worst I found for dirt was 5353, I think it was a fuelman's delight on the depot rake out pit as the should not have been one cinder left in it, thus a mini vacuum cleaner would suffice rather than the wider shovel they used.  The other aspect of those types when working deep sea trains rather than shunting trips, although one could still do it on those such as the ones to Penrith & Hornsby & off the shore, was you could fire them more satisfactorily with a band under the door, like the passenger engines.  IIRC 5412 I found you could match it with any pig or P by having the door cocked & open with no dulling affect on steam all the way from Gosford to BMD & on other occasions also.

No problems with working them harder with the regulator being wider opened though, on that score the TF was slightly better than the superheated T's without slippage or priming.

Kclass were rough, even though there were only a few left in my time, around 20, the best part of them was you didn't have to go under them for oiling. General steaming capacity & all was the same as with the others, but as I say they shook more & harder to keep your balance on.  

Worst aspect though was the slow slog of them, if you had one on the south what was a long trip normally with a pig, 38 or 59, was extended with the freighters. Cleaning the fire also was mad worse with having to underneath for both hoppers, front & rear for raking out.  realistically though like most steam I do not think they owed the railways anything as they did their jobs well, some better than others.

I don't understand the weights issue (water in the firebox? would mean a burnt boiler or stays, & trouble ahead for crew) but from what I have been able to ascertain on the NW or more especially to BNWY, only the 50cl was allowed to run there, was it owing to the floating drivers as against the flanged others?  My first trip on the line was in 1969, & even on a 48cl it was an unpleasant experience especially in the sections from Premer - Bnwy especially to Bomera, as the track was primarily on ash speed was 20K's max, thus I can imagine the aversion to having a freighter on the line of any type.
  M636C Minister for Railways

M

I don't understand the weights issue (water in the firebox? would mean a burnt boiler or stays, & trouble ahead for crew) but from what I have been able to ascertain on the NW or more especially to BNWY, only the 50cl was allowed to run there, was it owing to the floating drivers as against the flanged others? My first trip on the line was in 1969, & even on a 48cl it was an unpleasant experience especially in the sections from Premer - Bnwy especially to Bomera, as the track was primarily on ash speed was 20K's max, thus I can imagine the aversion to having a freighter on the line of any type.
a6et

Col, I agree that I haven't successfully explained the firebox and water issue.

What I'm talking about is the distance between the outer and inner firebox shells at the sides and the rear of the firebox.
I'm not talking about maintaining a lower water level above the crown sheet.

The difference between the original T class boiler and the "Standard Goods" boiler was that the spacing between the inner firebox and the outer firebox was larger.  Thus the stays were longer and the grate area was slightly less. This would improve circulation of water around the firebox which might be useful after some scaling has taken place.

Now we should consider the tapered boiler used on the TF and K classes. the boiler was the same diameter at the smokebox end but the second boiler course was conical arranged with the taper on the top. This resulted in a larger boiler diameter at the rear tubeplate, and the outer firebox was larger to match the greater diameter. This provided  a larger volume of water for a given depth of water above the tubeplate and a larger volume of steam in the boiler above the firebox.

The larger boiler and firebox weighed more and the larger quantity of water and steam in the TF boiler compared to the T boiler would also weigh more. This contributed to the greater weight of the TF compared to the T and was one reason they were restricted to fewer light lines than the T class.

Conversely, although the "Standard Goods" boiler was the same external size as the T class boiler more water was carried in the larger spaces between the inner and outer firebox, so a 50 class would weigh more when fitted with a standard boiler, probably less than a tonne.

M636C
  M636C Minister for Railways

M

of course the snotty nose types were different as they tended to be lighter on their feet & more readily prone to slip than the other types, I also never found them being worked harder then half regulator as going to much past that point they would lift the water more readily as well as slip, just worked out a bit more on the screw.
"a6et"


As I've said earlier, both before 1924 and after, using the same class for superheated and non superheated locomotives(generally called "saturated" in NSW by reference to the steam conditions, the steam being saturated and unable to absorb more water) caused some confusion since the train loads (and as Col has pointed out, the handling) were different for superheated and saturated locomotives.

In 1924, examples of the P, T and TF classes still had saturated boilers, and these were classed the same after 1924 as well.

By contrast in Victoria, about that time, the A2 class was split into A1 (saturated) and A2 (superheated) and the Dd class into D1 (saturated) and D2 (superheated) types.

As I've said earlier, the P class and the first thirty T class remained saturated because their slide valve cylinders were unsuitable for superheated steam owing to problems with lubrication at the highersteam temperature.

By 1929, 32 class were due for cylinder replacement and the class was progressively superheated, with new frames being provided from 1937 because the extra power and speed was finding weaknesses in the original frames.

Due to the economic depression, a number of staurated 50 and 53 class were stored while others remained in service.

The NSWGR concentrated saturated 50 class in Port Waratah coal service. This consisted of collecting wooden four wheel unbraked hopper wagons at East Greta and Hexham and elsewhere and dragging them slowly to the Port of Newcastle. The addtional power and efficiency of a superheater is best obtained by continuous operation and it was felt that the stop start operation of these trains was better handled by saturated engines, which were cheaper to build and repair but had a higher fuel consumption in more normal operation.

It is hard to appreciate now with the continuous operation of fast and heavy trains that the "coal lines" were to keep the coal trains from delaying faster and higher priority trains.

With the outbreak of World War II, those stored saturated 50 and 53 class that had not been scrapped were rebuilt and superheated, including several survivors from the first thirty 50 class, so the 53 class became uniform but saturated 50 class remained in coal service and as yard shunters until the end of steam. On the day of the ceremonial last run of 6042, saturated 5069 was still in steam at Broadmeadow loco, although it didn't actually run that day.

So from a classification point of view, the 50 class was the last survivor of the locomotives that had both superheated and saturated versions at the 1924 renumbering.

However, as I said above, since 1924, the 30 class had split into tender and tank versions and the tender locomotives had split into saturated and superheated versions.

In this aspect, NSW classification was less flexible than that used in Victoria.

The Victorians had their own idiosyncracies, where as well as the letter code, locomotive numbers were swapped around to keep superheated and saturated locomotives in separate numerical groups. At least in NSW most locomotives had only two (or maybe three) numbers. Victorian A1s in particular were progressively renumbered to keep thier running numbers below the lowest A2 number, so the number 805 appeared on five locomotives in succession as superheating advanced. At least the numbers were on cast iron plates easily moved from loco to loco.

M636C
  a6et Minister for Railways

As I've said earlier, both before 1924 and after, using the same class for superheated and non superheated locomotives(generally called "saturated" in NSW by reference to the steam conditions, the steam being saturated and unable to absorb more water) caused some confusion since the train loads (and as Col has pointed out, the handling) were different for superheated and saturated locomotives.

In 1924, examples of the P, T and TF classes still had saturated boilers, and these were classed the same after 1924 as well.

By contrast in Victoria, about that time, the A2 class was split into A1 (saturated) and A2 (superheated) and the Dd class into D1 (saturated) and D2 (superheated) types.

As I've said earlier, the P class and the first thirty T class remained saturated because their slide valve cylinders were unsuitable for superheated steam owing to problems with lubrication at the highersteam temperature.

By 1929, 32 class were due for cylinder replacement and the class was progressively superheated, with new frames being provided from 1937 because the extra power and speed was finding weaknesses in the original frames.

Due to the economic depression, a number of staurated 50 and 53 class were stored while others remained in service.

The NSWGR concentrated saturated 50 class in Port Waratah coal service. This consisted of collecting wooden four wheel unbraked hopper wagons at East Greta and Hexham and elsewhere and dragging them slowly to the Port of Newcastle. The addtional power and efficiency of a superheater is best obtained by continuous operation and it was felt that the stop start operation of these trains was better handled by saturated engines, which were cheaper to build and repair but had a higher fuel consumption in more normal operation.

It is hard to appreciate now with the continuous operation of fast and heavy trains that the "coal lines" were to keep the coal trains from delaying faster and higher priority trains.

With the outbreak of World War II, those stored saturated 50 and 53 class that had not been scrapped were rebuilt and superheated, including several survivors from the first thirty 50 class, so the 53 class became uniform but saturated 50 class remained in coal service and as yard shunters until the end of steam. On the day of the ceremonial last run of 6042, saturated 5069 was still in steam at Broadmeadow loco, although it didn't actually run that day.

So from a classification point of view, the 50 class was the last survivor of the locomotives that had both superheated and saturated versions at the 1924 renumbering.

However, as I said above, since 1924, the 30 class had split into tender and tank versions and the tender locomotives had split into saturated and superheated versions.

In this aspect, NSW classification was less flexible than that used in Victoria.

The Victorians had their own idiosyncracies, where as well as the letter code, locomotive numbers were swapped around to keep superheated and saturated locomotives in separate numerical groups. At least in NSW most locomotives had only two (or maybe three) numbers. Victorian A1s in particular were progressively renumbered to keep thier running numbers below the lowest A2 number, so the number 805 appeared on five locomotives in succession as superheating advanced. At least the numbers were on cast iron plates easily moved from loco to loco.

M636C
M636C

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