Louisville & Nashville / Louisville, Henderson & St Louis 4-6-2 "Pacific" Type Locomotives

Class Details by Steve Llanso

Class K-1 (Locobase 8127)

Data from L&N 8-1927 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive collection.

When the L&N adopted Pacifics for its passenger traffic, the design still featured slide valves and a saturated-steam boiler. 20 sq ft of the firebox heating area took the form of arch tubes.

Both Alco's Rogers Works in Paterson, New Jersey delivered five (works numbers 6254-6258 in 1905) and the railroad's own shops delivered 25 K1s in 1905-1907.

Fifteen of the 25 were upgraded to the superheated K2-A modification; see Locobase 8128.

Class K-2/K-2A (Locobase 8128)

Data from L & N 8-1927 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive collection.

After sharing the building of their K1 light Pacifics (Locobase 8127) with Rogers, the L & N began building a superheated version based on that saturated-steam design. In the new engines, there was at least one unusual change. The original boiler had 291 2" tubes, the superheated vessel had 132 - a not-untypical reduction to make room for the 21 flues. But the tubes were new and measured 2 1/4" outside diameter. On the other hand, the firebox remained unchanged and still had 20 sq ft (1.85 sq m) of arch tubes contributing to its direct heating surface area. And, as usual, weight climbed as did maximum axle loading.

Satisfied with the result of this redesign, the L & N then upgraded K-1s 151-152, 154-155, 158, 160-168, and 172 to this standard. Although relatively small, the class served for a long time. Charles B Castner in Drury (1993) says they hauled passenger trains between Cincinnati and Atlanta and Cincinnati and New Orleans. As larger passenger engines took over these main-line tasks, the K2-As wound up in South Alabama and the Gulf Coast and eventually pulled locals on the Chattahoochee and Pensacola branches.

Class K-3 (Locobase 8129)

Data from L & N 8-1927 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive collection.

After the L & N's own shops finished the 20 Pacifics of the K2 class (Locobase 8129), they produced another 17 K3s at South Louisville in 1912-1913 to a slightly larger and heavier design.

Locobase isn't sure why the same 21-flue superheater layout, measuring the same length between tube sheets, would yield 84 fewer sq ft of superheater surface, especially when the railroad increased the number of fire tubes. He suspects that the superheater elements themselves were shortened for some reason. Calculations show a meager 12.7% of total heating surface area derived from superheating.

This class took on the same duties as did the K2s, but entered retirement beginning in 1940. The last one left service in 1951.

Class K-4/K-4A (Locobase 148)

Data from L & N 8-1927 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive collection.

44 engines built by L&N as part of the K-series Pacifics. K3s (Locobase 8129) had identical dimensions except for their 21 1/2" cylinders. Charles B Castner in Drury (1993) says the K4-As had their own road-number range (2212-2215) for accounting reasons.

The K4 & K4-A engines had the same mysteriously limited superheater area found in the K3s.

K4-Bs had much more superheater area; see Locobase 6669.

Four K6 series (296-299) were built by Baldwin in 1913 (Locobase 2789) for the Gulf, Mobile, and Northern and purchased by the L & N in 1921.

Class K-4B (Locobase 6669)

Data from L & N 8-1927 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive collection.

These South Louisville locomotives were based on the earlier K-4 (Locobase 148), using the same firebox and grate (with 19.7 sq ft of arch tubes contributing to firebox heating surface). But the newer engines had almost doubled the superheater area and lengthened by the boiler by just shy of a foot and a half.

Class K-5 (Locobase 6670)

Data from L & N 8-1927 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive collection.

Delivered from Richmond, this class consisted of the reliable and well-liked USRA light Pacific design. As Charles B Castner in Drury (1993) points out, these were considerably larger than the homegrown 4-6-2s produced up until then. So satisfying was this design that the L & N went to Baldwin and Brooks to produce twenty more in 1923-1924. Baldwin's engines had 46 sq ft (4.25 sq m) direct heating surface area in the combustion chamber and 27 sq ft (2.5 sq m) in arch tubes. They also had 14" (356 mm) piston valves and, unusually for a Baldwin, Alco power reverse gear.

Chris Hohl's work on streamlined North American locomotives led him to send Locobase three photographs in April 2013 that show the extensive cosmetic changes made to the 275, 277, and 295. All bear some resemblance to the Canadian National 4-8-4s in the use of a full skyline casing running from a grille over the smokebox to the front of the cab that masked both the short stack and the sand and steam domes. The air pumps mounted below the smokebox on the "front porch" were shielded by white-painted covers. The headlight thrust forward from the center of the smokebox at the tip of a truncated cone.

The color photo of 295 reveals that the deep valence running from the pilot up the steps and along the side of the locomotive clear back to the back end of the tender was white with red piping. Both cab and the front half of the tender had rounded top edges.

Class K-7 (Locobase 149)

Data from L & N 8-1927 locomotive diagram book supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive collection. See also Kincaid A Herr, The Louisville & Nashville Railroad, 1950-1963, (Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 1964), p. 361. (Thanks to Chris Hohl for pointing out the mixed valve-gear setup, which is described in Alfred W Bruce, The Steam Locomotive in America (New York: Bonanza Books, 1952), pp. 201-201, 210.) Works number was 66189 in April 1925.

Three-piston design very similar to those of the CRI&P and the Missouri Pacific. Shared the longer wheelbase of the MP #6000, the grate area with the Rock Island #999. Bruce's diagram shows that Like those locomotives, all three cylinders were line abreast and roughly equally spaced. But the two right-hand piston valves were closely spaced over the right-hand cylinder and linked together by a solid arm that pivoted around its center, thus actuating first the central valve, then the outside right valve.

As Richard E Prince noted in his Louisville & Nashville Locomotives (rev. ed; 1968), p. 109. , from a maintenance standpoint, this engine could not be considered "...a howling success."

Its firebox heating surface area included 27 sq ft (2.5 sq m) of arch tubes.

It was later stored during the Depression years, then rebuilt with a more conventional cylinder outfit of two 25" x 28" (635 x 711 mm) cylinders in 1940. The result was a locomotive that was apparently well suited to the L&N's express South Wind service.

An important addition was an enormous tender carrying 20,000 US gallons (75,700 litres) of water and 27 1/2 tons (24,948 kg) of coal. So equipped, the 295 covered the 205 miles (330 km) at 55 mph (89 km/h) between Nashville and Birmingham, Ala nonstop.

Class K-8 (Locobase 8130)

Data from L & N 5 -1941 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive collection.

Known as the Henderson Route, this railway was begun as the Louisville, St Louis & Texas Railroad in 1888. The first train ran between Owensboro, Ky and Stephensport in 1888 and Evansville (Ind)-Louisville service began in 1889. Ultimately, the main line stretched 142 miles from Louisville to Henderson, Ky on the south bank of the Ohio River, then crossed on L & N metals to Evansville and on 166 miles through southern Illinois to St Louis.

These Pacifics were the last locomotives to be purchased by the L H & St L. Relatively small and light, their boilers featured a generous amount of superheat. The Louisville & Nashville acquired the class when it absorbed the railway in 1929. As K8s, the engines served the L & N until 1948.

Specifications by Steve Llanso
Locobase ID8127 8128 8129 148 6669 6670 149 8130
RailroadLouisville & Nashville (L & N)Louisville & Nashville (L & N)Louisville & Nashville (L & N)Louisville & Nashville (L & N)Louisville & Nashville (L & N)Louisville & Nashville (L & N)Louisville & Nashville (L & N)Louisville, Henderson & St Louis (L & N)
Road Numbers150-174150-194195-211216-239+246-263240-45, 264-28329581-87
BuilderseveralL&NL & NL & NL & NseveralAlco-BrooksAlco-Richmond
Valve GearStephensonWalschaertWalschaertWalschaertWalschaertWalschaertWalschaert & GresleyWalschaert
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase12'12'12'12.67'12.67'12.67'14.33'12.33'
Engine Wheelbase30.17'30.17'30.58'32.92'32.92'32.92'36.58'32.67'
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheebase 0.40 0.40 0.39 0.38 0.38 0.38 0.39 0.38
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender)61.58'61.58'62.79'64.46'66.04'66.04'71.46'63.75'
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle)42000 lbs46600 lbs44500 lbs51000 lbs51000 lbs54000 lbs59100 lbs44100 lbs
Weight on Drivers115900 lbs126400 lbs131000 lbs139000 lbs139000 lbs162000 lbs177000 lbs126500 lbs
Engine Weight187800 lbs201500 lbs211500 lbs233000 lbs233000 lbs277000 lbs295000 lbs210000 lbs
Tender Light Weight143400 lbs143400 lbs143400 lbs152700 lbs179000 lbs194000 lbs194000 lbs157800 lbs
Total Engine and Tender Weight331200 lbs344900 lbs354900 lbs385700 lbs412000 lbs471000 lbs489000 lbs367800 lbs
Tender Water Capacity7000 gals7000 gals7000 gals9000 gals9000 gals10000 gals10000 gals7000 gals
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal)15 tons15 tons15 tons16 tons16 tons16 tons16 tons15 tons
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) on which locomotive could run64 lb/yard70 lb/yard73 lb/yard77 lb/yard77 lb/yard90 lb/yard98 lb/yard70 lb/yard
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter69"69"69"69"69"73"73"69"
Boiler Pressure200 psi200 psi200 psi200 psi200 psi200 psi190 psi200 psi
Cylinders (dia x stroke)20" x 28"20.5" x 28"21.5" x 28"22" x 28"22" x 28"25" x 28"22.5" x 28" (3)22" x 26"
Tractive Effort27594 lbs28991 lbs31889 lbs33389 lbs33389 lbs40753 lbs47040 lbs31004 lbs
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 4.20 4.36 4.11 4.16 4.16 3.98 3.76 4.08
Heating Ability
Firebox Area234 sq. ft234 sq. ft229.70 sq. ft229.70 sq. ft229.70 sq. ft261 sq. ft285 sq. ft187 sq. ft
Grate Area45 sq. ft45 sq. ft45 sq. ft45 sq. ft45 sq. ft66.70 sq. ft66.80 sq. ft47 sq. ft
Evaporative Heating Surface3039 sq. ft2223 sq. ft2445 sq. ft2445 sq. ft2562 sq. ft3333 sq. ft3435 sq. ft1599 sq. ft
Superheating Surface440 sq. ft356 sq. ft356 sq. ft615 sq. ft794 sq. ft933 sq. ft536 sq. ft
Combined Heating Surface3039 sq. ft2663 sq. ft2801 sq. ft2801 sq. ft3177 sq. ft4127 sq. ft4368 sq. ft2135 sq. ft
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume298.49207.82207.81198.47207.97209.52177.72139.78
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation9000900090009000900013340126929400
Same as above plus superheater percentage900010530101701017010710158751535711750
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area4680054756519125191254669621186552246750
Power L1950915811132881269117262180251585614794
Power MT542.63827.31670.88603.86821.36735.89592.48773.48




Introduction and roster provided by Richard Duley. Class details and specifications provided by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media.