New South Wales 2-8-0 Locomotives in Australia


Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class D50/D53 - rebuilt (Locobase 2415)

Data from Trevor Edmonds in personal communication with Wes Barris and Locobase 28-30 January 2011 following his detection of an error in the sketchy entry already prepared. See also John Forsythe (Archive Officer, Transport House), Steam Locomotive Data, Public Transport Commission of NSW [New South Wales], July 1974, p.81, archived at [], last accessed 12 March 2015. (Many thanks to Brett Fitzpatrick for his 11 March 2015 email supplying the link to the CoalsToNewcastle website.) Also look at [] accessed 4 Jan 2007.


Class J - compound (Locobase 12064)

Data from Price Howell, Comparative Statistics of the Australasian Railways, Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, March 1899, pp. 94-95. See also Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification for Engines as digitized by the DeGolyer Library of Southern Methodist University Vol 16, p. 262. Works numbers were 11834 in April 1891 and 11843 in May.

Locobase 9550 details the production of the eighteen simple-expansion, Belpaire-firebox variants of this pair of Vauclain compounds. In all respects except the cylinder layout, the 20 locomotives were identical. Within five years after their production, these compounds were rebuilt as 21" x 26" simples as well.


Class J / 131 (Locobase 1106)

Data from John Forsythe (Archive Officer, Transport House), Steam Locomotive Data, Public Transport Commission of NSW [New South Wales], July 1974, p. 76, archived at [], last accessed 12 March 2015. (Many thanks to Brett Fitzpatrick for his 11 March 2015 email supplying the link to the CoalsToNewcastle website.) . See also DeGolyer, Volume 9, p. 63. Baldwin works numbers were 4405 in August 1878; 4414 in September 1878; 4525-4531, 4533, 4535 in February 1879.

Later reclassed as either X10 or Z28 and renumbered 2801,1005, 2802, 1006, 2803, 2804, 1007, 1008, 2805, 1009, 2806 consecutively. Seven served the War Department in 1916-1917.

Three were scrapped in 1927. All but one of the rest were withdrawn in 1933.


Class J/Z29 (Locobase 9550)

Data from Price Howell, Comparative Statistics of the Australasian Railways, Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, March 1899, pp. 94-95. See also Thomas Fletcher Birrell, "The Railway System of New South Wales", Report 614, American Society of Civil Engineers Transactions, Volume 28 (August 1893), pp. 326-356, esp.341-348; Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification for Engines as digitized by the DeGolyer Library of Southern Methodist University Vol 16, p. 262, and Report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Alleged Defectiveness and Unsuitability of the Baldwin Locomotives--Apointed March 15, 1892 (Sydney: Charles Potter, Government Printers, 1892). (See Appendix D1 for a detailed elevation drawing of this class.) Works numbers were 11848-11854, 11860-11865, 11868, 11871, 1187311874, 11882-11883 in May 1891.

In 1890, the NSWGR team asking for tenders (D H Neale, E A Loughry, and C H Stanger) outlined for Baldwin an example of the traffic demands and how they hoped some new locomotives might reduce congestion: "To haul 100 trucks of cattle from Dubbo to Penrith seven trains are now run, the speed of which (including all stoppages) averages 13 1/2 miles per hour. Engines are required that will take 33 per cent greater load, and have a margin of power for increasing the speed to 17 miles per hour ...Twelve of these engines will be required to meet the Western livestock traffic alone between Dubbo and Penrith." (Appendix to the 1892 report, p. 318).

In 1896, the Railway Commission explained its reasoning in buying this class of engines from an American builder: They noted the trying conditions facing any locomotive and how the Baldwins met them: "The American consolidation engine can haul a train of 350 tons on a grade of 1 in 40 at 10 miles per hour, 620 tons on a grade of 1 in 100 at 15 miles per hour, and 650 tons on a grade of 1 in 150 at a speed of 18 miles per hour. . . . In 1891 these powerful engines first began to work, and since that date the gross and net earnings per train will have been largely increased." The Railway Commission drew this comparison: "In 1890, with the lighter engines, the net earnings were 58 cents per train mile, whereas in 1894 they had increased to 85 cents, and the net increase for the years 1891-94, inclusive, amounted to nearly $5,000,000."

They were a successful design that ran for fifteen years as saturated engines.

In 1916-1920, some were rebuilt with superheated boilers, piston valves, and 22" cylinders and ran for more than a decade. They were reclassified Z-29 in 1924. 2918 (ex-500) was the last in the class to be retired, leaving service in April 1935.

Four more locomotives were built to exactly the same design. Two were Vauclain compounds that preceded the batch shown here; they are in Locobase 12064 and included here in the class count because of their relatively rapid conversion to simple expansion

Two others were built two years later to exactly the same design, but delivered not 12,000 miles away, but about 120 miles to the Huntington & Broad Top; see Locobase 12063


Class K-1353/D55 (Locobase 2416)

Most data from C. F. Dewey, "Consolidation Locomotive for New South Wales", Railway and Locomotive Engineering, June 1919, p.184. See also John Forsythe (Archive Officer, Transport House), Steam Locomotive Data, Public Transport Commission of NSW [New South Wales], July 1974, p.81, archived at [], last accessed 12 March 2015. (Many thanks to Brett Fitzpatrick for his 11 March 2015 email supplying the link to the CoalsToNewcastle website.)

Belpaire boiler. Follow-on set to the TF-939 and fitted with the same boiler and grate, but heavier. Also the Allan gear was given over in favor of the Southern system, used mostly on the US railway that gave the valve gear its name. The gear actuated 10" (254 mm) piston valves. The first 91 engines were equipped with a superheater designed by the NSW's Chief Mechanical Engineer E E Lucy, who had come to the NSW from Great Britain's Great Western Railway. The last 29 received a Schmidt AM Type.

Dewey stated the locomotive's boiler pressure as 150 psi, but all of the Standard Goods ran at 160 psi.

The report added that the engine was designed to run 500 miles "...without any shed attention, the crew being changed on the road." Dewey claimed that since it had gone into service, "...it has been given some very heavy work to perform with very satisfactory results." The 14 long tons of coal were intended to be sufficient to support "continuous heavy haulage" for up to 300 miles.

A later rebuild retrofitted the Schmidt superheater to all 120 locomotives; see Locobase 15988.


Class K-1353/D55 - rebuilt (Locobase 15988)

John Forsythe (Archive Officer, Transport House), Steam Locomotive Data, Public Transport Commission of NSW [New South Wales], July 1974, p. 74, archived at [], last accessed 12 March 2015. (Many thanks to Brett Fitzpatrick for his 11March 2015 email supplying the link to the CoalsToNewcastle website.)

Locobase 2415 shows the locally built class of Consolidations first delivered in 1918. When all were converted to a Schmidt design essentially identical to the D50/D53 update shown in Locobase 2412, the existing Belpaire firebox also housed two arch tubes that contributed 14 sq ft of heating surface area. The Southern gear and 10" (254 mm) piston valves were not changed.

This entry shows the boiler changes and the tender used by the 70 engines converted to oil burning.


Class T-524/D50 (Locobase 2414)

Data from Samuel Rendell (M. I Mech.E), "The Steam Locomotive: Fifty Years Ago and Now", read Saturday, 13 January 1906 and published in the Transactions of the Manchester Association of Engineers 1906 (January to March), "Australian Consolidation Locomotive," Scientific American Supplement, Volume 42, No. 1074 (1 August 1896), p. 17159, "An Australian Consolidation Locomotive", American Engineer, Car Builder And Railroad", Volume 71, No 3 (March 1897), p. 110; "Australian Consolidation Engine", Railway and Locomotive Engineering, October 1899, p. 463; and Hugh Heaton and Rex Carver, "ROD of Steel: The Railway Operating Division," Railway Magazine, July 2014, p. 23.

The archetypal standard goods locomotive on the NSW and built from 1896 to 1916. After celebrating the substantial increase in power afforded by the 1891 Baldwin Consolidations, (Locobase 9550), the Railway Commission said of this new class: "This type will, we believe, be one of the most satisfactory engines for goods [freight] trains, working on linas with heavy grades, ever constructed, as it exemplifies the careful combination of all the best qualities of the American and English locomotives. We have been able to effect this result, as a large number of engines of both classes have been in use on these lines for many years, and our locomotive officers have consequently been able to study and appreciate the relative qualities of both types under all types of conditions."

AECB&R's editor (most likely Matthias Forney) appreciated the melding of the two cultures, but spun it differently. He contended that the "main features of the engine are American, and many of the details English ...the frames are, however, of the English plate pattern, the plate being 1 1/2" thick". Placing the Belpaire firebox between the frames did allow for a deeper firebox, he acknowledged, but it was not quite as wide as those in contemporary American locomotives. On the other hand, it housed a long brick arch set below the tubes at the forward end and reaching upward and backward.

Both the valve motion and the steam circuit invited questions, however. The inside motion and vertically placed valves, Forney said, required "bent eccentric rods and a radius rod with a gap in it to clear the front driving axle." He thought the steam passages "very long", arguing that the usual US arrangement of outside steam chests operated by a rocking shaft and ordingary link would be "universally preferred."

"English engineers," Forney continued, "almost invariably seem to have an unreasonable prejudice against the use of a rocking shafrt." American experience showed that there was "hardly any working part of an American locomotive which costs so little to maintain or gives so little trouble as a rocker."

Builders were:

Beyer, Peacock & Co. -- 151 -- Works numbers were 3770-3774 (May-June 1896), 4001-4009 (May-August 1900), 4128-4142 (February-September 1901), 4351-4390 (July 1902-January 1901), 5054-5083 (July-October 1908), 5185-5234 (April-October 1909).

North British -- 84 -- Works numbers were 19942-19961 (December 1912-February 1913), 20588-20637 (April 1914-January 1915), 21239-21241 (January 1916).

Clyde Engineering -- 30 -- Works numbers 1-15 (June 1907-December 1908), 17-19 (October 1909), 20-30 (January-July 1910)

Neilson & Co. -- 10 -- Works numbers were 5115-5119 (October 1897), 5235-5239 (August-October 1898)

Dubs & Co. -- 10 -- Works numbers were 3574-3578 (April, July 1898)

Another ten North British engines went to the British ROD (Railway Operating Division) for use on the Western Front and, say Hugh Heaton and Rex Carver, constituted "the cheekiest purchase" by the ROD in World War I. They explain that the set was "used intensively with very little maintenance, then offered to New South Wales at a price higher than that originally negotiated for the new engines!" . These were later handed over to Belgian Railways.

As delivered the engines had long, straight boilers like the P-6 4-6-0s as well as square-shouldered Belpaire fireboxes, low outside cylinders with tail rods and inside slide valves.The boiler was decidedly British with almost three dozen more tubes each measuring 1/2" less in outside diameter. Sandboxes rode the running board over the first driven axle instead of on the boiler and were powered by compressed air from a reservoir located just in front of the cab.

Many were superheated and gathered into a super-class shown in Locobase 2412.

As of 1954, when diesel engines started displacing steam in all classes, fully 220 of the original 280 still operated.


Class TF-939 / D53 - saturated (Locobase 12161)

Data from Trevor Edmonds in personal communication with Wes Barris and Locobase on 28-30 January 2011 following his detection of an error in the sketchy entry already prepared. Also see [] accessed 4 Jan 2007 and John Forsythe (Archive Officer, Transport House), Steam Locomotive Data, Public Transport Commission of NSW [New South Wales], July 1974, p. 62, archived at [], last accessed 12 March 2015. (Many thanks to Brett Fitzpatrick for his 11 March 2015 email supplying the link to the CoalsToNewcastle website.)

The 1974 databook records the following about the D53s. The first 35 in the class arrived with saturated boilers. Of those, seventeen were superheated in the late 1920s-early 1930s. The eighteen locomotives that were not later superheated were 5302, 5304, 5306-5307, 5309-5310, 5312, 5314-5315, 5317, 5320-5322, 5324, 5327-5328, 5332, 5335.). All of these were retired in the mid-1930s and scrapped just before the outbreak of World War II in 1939.


Class TF-939 / D53 - superheated (Locobase 3780)

Data from Data from Trevor Edmonds in personal communication with Wes Barris and Locobase 28-30 January 2011 following his detection of an error in the sketchy entry already prepared. See also John Forsythe (Archive Officer, Transport House), Steam Locomotive Data, Public Transport Commission of NSW [New South Wales], July 1974, p. 62, archived at [], last accessed 12 March 2015. (Many thanks to Brett Fitzpatrick for his 11March 2015 email supplying the link to the CoalsToNewcastle website.), and Peter Cokley in Bryan Attewell ([] Steam locomotive simulator (April 2000 edition). [] (1 Feb 2004)

Photographs show an unusually flat-topped firebox, very tall steam dome and inside valve gear. Superheating the D53 design included deleting the slide valves and replacing them with 10" (254 mm) piston valves that fed cylinders with 1" (25.4 mm) greater diameters.

Fifty-nine of the 80 locomotives that were delivered with saturated boilers (Locobase 12161) were superheated. The timing of these upgrades suggests that the commitment to superheating almost all of the class was made in the latter half of 1914. The twenty-five saturated engines from Clyde in 1915--5391-5415-- were all superheated within months of their delivery; these had Lucy superheaters.

Eighteen engines whose production preceded this date and that received superheaters were the last to so equipped. 5326 seems to have served as the trial horse for a Schmidt A M type superheater in 1919, followed by 5301 (February 1926), 5325 and 5305 (July); 5331 (July 1927); 5318 (January 1929), 5333 (February), 5316 (March), 5313 and 5330 (April); 5359 (March 1930), 5323 (August), 5311 and 5319 (September), 5303 (November); 5329 (May 1931); and 5308 (June 1933). Twenty more from Clyde in 1916 (5433-5442 and 5451-5460) retained their saturated boilers until retrofitted with the Schmidt AM in 1919 (1), 1920 (2), 1921 (1), 1922 (9), 1923 (2), and 1924 (5).

Principal Dimensions by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

ClassD50/D53 - rebuiltJ - compoundJ / 131J/Z29K-1353/D55
Locobase ID2415 12064 1106 9550 2416
RailroadNew South WalesNew South WalesNew South WalesNew South WalesNew South Wales
CountryAustraliaAustraliaAustraliaAustraliaAustralia
Whyte2-8-02-8-02-8-02-8-02-8-0
Number in Class33721120120
Road Numbers5301+595-596/ 501-502 / 2919-2920131-141578-596/484-502/2901-29205501-5620
GaugeStdStdStdStdStd
Number Built21118120
BuilderseveralBurnham, Williams & CoBurnham, Parry, Williams & CoBurnham, Williams & CoClyde Engineering
Year19391891187918911918
Valve GearAllanStephensonStephensonSouthern
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft / m)15.25 / 4.6514.24 / 4.3414.75 / 4.5014.25 / 4.3415.25 / 4.65
Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)23.42 / 7.1422.34 / 6.8122.83 / 6.9622.33 / 6.8123.42 / 7.14
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheelbase 0.65 0.64 0.65 0.64 0.65
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)55 / 16.7648.26 / 14.7148.25 / 14.7152.46 / 15.99
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)38,864 / 17,62830,464 / 13,83538,696 / 17,552
Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg)144,368 / 65,484121,999 / 55,338127,204 / 55,338149,436 / 67,783
Engine Weight (lbs / kg)159,824 / 72,495140,280 / 63,630140,280 / 63,630164,976 / 74,832
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)143,360 / 65,02777,281 / 35,05471,680 / 35,054120,746 / 54,770
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)303,184 / 137,522217,561 / 98,684211,960 / 98,684285,722 / 129,602
Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)4755 / 18.014380 / 16.592500 / 9.473600 / 16.594800 / 18.18
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / Liters/MT)14.50 / 13 6.60 / 6 6.60 / 614.30 / 13
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)60 / 3051 / 25.5053 / 26.5062 / 31
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in / mm)51 / 129551 / 129549 / 124551 / 129551 / 1295
Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)160 / 11160 / 11130 / 9160 / 11160 / 11
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)22" x 26" / 559x66021" x 26" / 533x66020" x 24" / 508x61021" x 26" / 533x66022" x 26" / 559x660
Low Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)17" x 26" / 432x660
Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)33,557 / 15221.2224,209 / 10981.0321,649 / 9819.8330,576 / 13869.0633,557 / 15221.22
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 4.30 5.04 4.16 4.45
Heating Ability
Tubes (number - dia) (in / mm)165 - 1.875" / 48231 - 2.25" / 57198 - 2" / 51231 - 2.25" / 57177 - 1.875" / 48
Flues (number - dia) (in / mm)24 - 5" / 12724 - 5" / 127
Flue/Tube length (ft / m)13.75 / 4.1913.39 / 4.0810.98 / 3.3513.37 / 4.0813.33 / 4.06
Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)179 / 16.64158.02 / 14.68147 / 13.66158 / 14.68174.40 / 16.20
Grate Area (sq ft / m2)28.73 / 2.6732 / 2.9727.60 / 2.5632 / 2.9728.75 / 2.67
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1753 / 162.921968 / 182.831277 / 118.641967 / 182.741757 / 163.23
Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)364 / 33.83445 / 41.34
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)2117 / 196.751968 / 182.831277 / 118.641967 / 182.742202 / 204.57
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume153.25188.82146.33188.72153.59
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation45975120358851204600
Same as above plus superheater percentage53785120358851205520
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area33,50925,28319,11025,28033,485
Power L170435492244835977887
Power MT430.21396.98249.36465.43

Principal Dimensions by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

ClassK-1353/D55 - rebuiltT-524/D50TF-939 / D53 - saturatedTF-939 / D53 - superheated
Locobase ID15988 2414 12161 3780
RailroadNew South WalesNew South WalesNew South WalesNew South Wales
CountryAustraliaAustraliaAustraliaAustralia
Whyte2-8-02-8-02-8-02-8-0
Number in Class12028080169
Road Numbers5501-56205001-52805301-5335, 5355-5360, 5391-5415,5301+ (see comments), 5361-5490
GaugeStdStdStdStd
Number Built28080110
BuilderEveleighseveralseveralClyde Engineering
Year189619121913
Valve GearSouthernAllanStephensonAllan
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft / m)15.25 / 4.6515 / 4.5715.25 / 4.6515.25 / 4.65
Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)23.42 / 7.1423 / 7.0123.42 / 7.1423.42 / 7.14
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheelbase 0.65 0.65 0.65 0.65
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)52.46 / 15.9952.19 / 15.9152.21 / 15.91
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)38,696 / 17,55234,720 / 15,74936,848 / 16,71438,864 / 17,628
Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg)149,436 / 67,783133,168 / 60,404143,584 / 65,129144,368 / 65,484
Engine Weight (lbs / kg)164,976 / 74,832145,936 / 66,196159,040 / 72,139159,824 / 72,495
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)120,746 / 54,77092,960 / 42,16693,296 / 42,318118,720 / 53,851
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)285,722 / 129,602238,896 / 108,362252,336 / 114,457278,544 / 126,346
Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)4800 / 18.184380 / 16.594380 / 16.594400 / 16.67
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / Liters/MT)2880 / 10,901 6.60 / 6 6.60 / 612.30 / 11
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)62 / 3155 / 27.5060 / 3060 / 30
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in / mm)51 / 129551 / 129551 / 129551 / 1295
Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)160 / 11160 / 11160 / 11160 / 11
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)22" x 26" / 559x66021" x 26" / 533x66021" x 26" / 533x66022" x 26" / 559x660
Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)33,557 / 15221.2230,576 / 13869.0630,576 / 13869.0633,557 / 15221.22
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 4.45 4.36 4.70 4.30
Heating Ability
Tubes (number - dia) (in / mm)165 - 1.875" / 48290 - 2" / 44308 - 1.875" / 48177 - 1.875" / 48
Flues (number - dia) (in / mm)24 - 5" / 12724 - 5" / 127
Flue/Tube length (ft / m)13.33 / 4.0613.37 / 4.0813.33 / 4.0613.33 / 4.06
Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)179 / 16.64166 / 15.43174.27 / 16.20174.40 / 16.21
Grate Area (sq ft / m2)28.75 / 2.6729.75 / 2.7728.75 / 2.6728.75 / 2.67
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1753 / 162.922198 / 204.282219 / 206.231757 / 163.29
Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)364 / 33.83446 / 41.45
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)2117 / 196.752198 / 204.282219 / 206.232203 / 204.74
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume153.25210.88212.90153.59
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation4600476046004600
Same as above plus superheater percentage5382476046005520
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area33,50926,56027,88333,485
Power L17043395140327898
Power MT415.62261.64247.63482.44

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