Sloss-Sheffield Steel & Iron Company 2-8-0 "Consolidation" Locomotives in the USA

Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class 25 (Locobase 15485)

Data from DeGolyer, Vol 80, pp. 168+. See also the GhostSoliders website entry on "Sloss Furnaces" at [], last accessed 14 October 2013; "Great Iron Combination", New York Times (14 August 1899); and Alex Lichtenstein, "'Through the Rugged Gates of the Penitentiary':Conflict Labor and Southern Coal", in Melvyn Stokes and Rick Halpern (eds), Race and Class in the American South Since 1890 (Providence, RI: Berg Publishers, 1994), pp. 3-42, esp. p 40.. Works numbers were 58410-58411 in May 1925 and 60388 in February 1928..

This design repeated the dimensions and weights of a set of superheated Consolidations sold to the Norfolk Southern in 1922 (Locobase 4949). Birmingham, Ala's SSISC was created in 1899 when the Sloss Iron & Steel Company merged with the Sheffield Steel & Iron Company. The intent was to pursue the development of a steel-making company--which it never did because the raw materials in the area simply weren't good enough to efficiently transform iron to steel.

On the other hand, its pig iron is described as exceptional, so it supplied local and regional pipe foundries (e.g.). A portion of the SSISC's mining work force consisted of local convicts supplied under the convict-lease system that was a common feature of much of industrialized Alabama from 1875 that persisted until a 1928 law ended it. (Sloss-Sheffield probably followed Tennessee Coal & Iron's lead and stopped using convicts well before that time.)

The design had 12" (305 mm) piston valves and 23 sq ft (2.15 sq m) of arch tubes contributed to firebox heating surface area.

When SSSIC began replacing steam with diesel, they returned to Baldwin in 1949 for small diesels.

Principal Dimensions by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Locobase ID15485
RailroadSloss-Sheffield Steel & Iron Company
Number in Class3
Road Numbers25-27
Number Built3
Valve GearWalschaert
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft / m)16 / 4.88
Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)24.50 / 7.47
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheelbase 0.65
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)57.85 / 17.63
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)
Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg)168,000 / 76,204
Engine Weight (lbs / kg)191,500 / 86,863
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)141,000 / 63,957
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)332,500 / 150,820
Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)7000 / 26.52
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / Liters/MT)12 / 11
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)70 / 35
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in / mm)57 / 1448
Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)200 / 13.80
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)22" x 28" / 559x711
Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)40,418 / 18333.32
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 4.16
Heating Ability
Tubes (number - dia) (in / mm)203 - 2" / 51
Flues (number - dia) (in / mm)32 - 5.375" / 137
Flue/Tube length (ft / m)14 / 4.27
Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)182 / 16.91
Grate Area (sq ft / m2)46.70 / 4.34
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)2288 / 212.56
Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)528 / 49.05
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)2816 / 261.61
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume185.71
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation9340
Same as above plus superheater percentage11,115
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area43,316
Power L112,261
Power MT643.59

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Wes Barris