Dublin & South Eastern 2-6-0 Locomotives in Ireland

Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class K2 (Locobase 7508)

Data from 1946 Beyer, Peacock catalogue hosted on Martyn Bane's website at [] (accessed 21 May 2006); "New Goods Locomotives for the Dublin & South Easter[n] Railway", Railway Engineer, Volume 44, No 7 (July 1923), pp. 263-264; and the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland's K2 entry at []; and "Dublin & South Eastern Railway, Steamindex at [], both last accessed 17 November 2019.. Batch 02160 works numbers were 6112-6113 in 1923.

[] (accessed 29 May 2006) show that these were the only locomotives procured for the D&SE during the seven-year superintendency of G H Wild. RPSI says that the Mogul layout solved the problem of excessive axle loading in the proposed 0-6-0 design. Adding a pony truck and reducing the boiler's size proved a more than adequate remedy.

The K2s didn't enter service until the Irish Civil War ended; DSER began operations with the pair in May 1923. They were taken into the Great Southern Railways (GSR) in 1925.

The design was fitted with the usual Belpaire firebox and showed stocky, purposeful lines, (Later videos of 461 running light suggested the adjective "bustling".) Eight-inch (203 mm) piston valves supplied steam to the inside cylinders. Steamindex's "Retrospective" on the class notes that "They were fitted with volute springs and large comfortable cabs which were appreciated on the open stretch between Bray and Wicklow."

RPSI's account states "Although always intended as goods engines, the K2 class were found to be quite satisfactory for passenger work as well. Both engines led a double life, working local passenger trains by day and heavy goods by night. They were considered very capable and versatile, and No.461 was reputedly the better of the two." RPSI added the opinion of "One experienced steam driver" who contended 461 was "the best loco, bar none, that ever ran in Ireland." RPSI wisely comments "Who knows?"

Two decades later, Ireland nationalized its lines as "the Coras Iompair Eireann (CIE); by this time the pair had been renumbered 461-462.

462 was retrofitted in 1940 with an N-type 160-psi (11.0 bar) boiler. New heating surface areas with tubes708 sq ft (66.78 sq m), firebox 120 sq ft (11.15 sq m) for a total evaporative heating surface area of 828 sq ft (76.82 sq m). A new superheater comprised 168 sq ft (15.61 sq m); combined heating surface area came to 996 sq ft (92.43 sq m), a reduction of 90 sq ft (8.36 sq m). Superheater ratio rose to 17%. The new firebox offered 19.5 sq ft (1.82 sq m) grate area.

In 1944, however, the shops switched boilers between the two engines, putting the 462's new boiler in 461 and 461's old boiler in 462.

Both remained in service until 1962.

462 was scrapped in 1963, but 461was stored until 1977, when it went to the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland. Its restoration resulted in a return to operations in 1990.

After the turn of the century, the RPSI put out a major appeal to fund overhaul of the firebox and boiler - in 2006, that task was estimated to cost 115,000 euros. Unexpected problems with the firebox ensured that the refit would be prolonged and it wound up taking ten years.

RPSI comments as the mechanical tasks came to an end, "The question of livery was given much thought as the overhaul neared its end. After seven years with one grey and one black engine, neither of those options seemed very attractive. The choice fell instead on CI+'s popular green livery. No.461 never carried this in service - it was for passenger locomotives and she was officially a goods engine - but it was felt that the livery should be represented on the main line and No.461 was the least inappropriate loco to do it."

Principal Dimensions by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Locobase ID7508
RailroadDublin & South Eastern (DSE)
Number in Class2
Road Numbers15-16/461-462
Number Built2
BuilderBeyer, Peacock
Valve GearStephenson
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft / m)16.08 / 4.90
Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)21.58 / 6.58
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheelbase 0.75
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)42.58 / 12.98
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)33,600 / 15,241
Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg)94,080 / 42,674
Engine Weight (lbs / kg)108,864 / 49,380
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)72,800 / 33,022
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)181,664 / 82,402
Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)3122 / 11.83
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / Liters/MT) 6.70 / 6
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)52 / 26
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in / mm)61 / 1549
Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)175 / 12.10
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)19" x 26" / 483x660
Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)22,888 / 10381.83
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 4.11
Heating Ability
Tubes (number - dia) (in / mm)
Flues (number - dia) (in / mm)18 - 5.25" / 133
Flue/Tube length (ft / m)
Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)134 / 12.45
Grate Area (sq ft / m2)20 / 1.86
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1086 / 100.89
Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)164 / 15.24
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1250 / 116.13
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume127.28
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation3500
Same as above plus superheater percentage3955
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area26,499
Power L16740
Power MT473.82

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