North West 4-4-0 Locomotives in India

Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class BESA/SPS (Locobase 4257)

Data from [], a page of the Vulcan Foundry catalogue ca. 1920; and "Superheater Engines for the Indian State Railways", Engineer, Volume 114 (11 October 1912), pp/ 384, 386.

This is the superheated variant of the smaller of the Small Passenger (SP) engines. It used the same Belpaire boiler as several other BESA designs .Indeed, comparing the various locomotives shows many common points only slightly affected by wheel arrangement.

The accompanying photographs show the Eight-wheeler's inside plate frames, cylinders and valve motion inside the frames ("all inside"), low running board with separate splashers over each driver, dome centered on the boiler, Belpaire firebox, and capped stack. A large grate suitable for burning the available indifferent-quality coal was paired with a small boiler.

As with the 0-6-0s described in Locobase 4247, India's operating conditions dictated small "cowcatcher" style pilots on the front buffer beam and full cabs shrouding both the footplate and the front of the tender.

The latter two were delivered with a Phoenix smokebox superheater and 229 tubes in the boiler that provided 1,193.3 sq ft (110.86 sq m) of heating surface. As with other trials in India, the British Isles, and elsewhere, the design didn't prove very effective and it was removed.

See the HP 4-6-0 for full description of the BESA intention and varying views of its utility.

Principal Dimensions by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Locobase ID4257
RailroadNorth West
Number in Class
Road Numbers
Number Built
Valve GearStephenson
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft / m) 9.50 / 2.90
Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)22.92 / 6.99
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheelbase 0.41
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)44.39 / 13.53
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)
Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg)76,160 / 34,546
Engine Weight (lbs / kg)118,944 / 53,952
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)89,600 / 40,642
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)208,544 / 94,594
Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)3600 / 13.64
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / Liters/MT) 8.25 / 8
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)63 / 31.50
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in / mm)74 / 1880
Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)180 / 12.40
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)20" x 26" / 508x660
Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)21,503 / 9753.61
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 3.54
Heating Ability
Tubes (number - dia) (in / mm)130 - 1.75" / 44
Flues (number - dia) (in / mm)18 - 5.25" / 133
Flue/Tube length (ft / m)11.37 / 3.47
Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)126.50 / 11.75
Grate Area (sq ft / m2)25.30 / 2.35
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1078 / 100.15
Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)240 / 22.30
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1318 / 122.45
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume114.03
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation4554
Same as above plus superheater percentage5374
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area26,869
Power L19089
Power MT526.20

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Wes Barris