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Tender Locomotives 4-8-4 “Northern”[Inhalt]
UIC Classification 2'D2'
Atlantic Coast Line class R-1
United States | 1938 | 12 produced

In 1938, the Atlantic Coast Line had Baldwin build twelve 4-8-4 Class R-1 locomotives, also known as Class 1800 because of their numbers, for express train service between Richmond, Virginia and Jacksonville, Florida. Their design was considered very successful and the boiler in particular exceeded many expectations. They pulled 1,500-ton trains of 20 cars and were even able to accelerate them significantly faster than the manufacturer had initially calculated.

Of note, the direct heating area of the actual firebox was increased from 272 square feet to 568 square feet  using a combustion chamber and thermic syphons. The back pressure of the cylinders was also very low, especially in the upper speed range, and allowed greater power output. The only known problem concerned the mass balancing, which was initially calculated incorrectly by Baldwin and still had to be improved.

After the adjustments to the mass balancing, the locomotives were approved for 90 mph and are said to have regularly reached 100 mph. When they later had to pull express freight trains, the maximum train load was set at 6,200 tons. Their service ended between 1951 and 1952.

General
Built1938
ManufacturerBaldwin
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Wheelbase47 ft 9 in
Fixed wheelbase20 ft 9 in
Total wheelbase97 ft 11 in
Service weight460,270 lbs
Adhesive weight263,127 lbs
Total weight895,270 lbs
Axle load65,792 lbs
Water capacity24,000 us gal
Fuel capacity54,000 lbs (coal)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power5,400 hp (4,027 kW)
Optimal speed54 mph
Top speed56 mph
Starting effort63,901 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter80 in
Boiler pressure275 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 27 x 30 in
Boiler
Grate area97.8 sq ft
Firebox area568 sq ft
Tube heating area4,185 sq ft
Evaporative heating area4,753 sq ft
Superheater area1,425 sq ft
Total heating area6,178 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
express
freight
last changed: 12/2023
Canadian National class U-2
Canada | 1927 | 155 produced
Factory New U-2a No. 6100 at the Baltimore & Ohio Centenary Fair of the Iron Horse
Factory New U-2a No. 6100 at the Baltimore & Ohio Centenary Fair of the Iron Horse
collection Taylor Rush

For mixed service in front of freight, passenger and express trains, the Canadian National procured locomotives with the wheel arrangement 4-8-4 for the first time in 1927, known in English-speaking countries as “Northern”. They followed the “superpower” philosophy popular in North America at the time and boasted a grate area of more than 80 square feet thanks to the rear bogie. The heating surface of the firebox was maximized with thermosiphonsfire bricks and water pipes. What was special about the rear bogie was that the wheels on the two axles had very different diameters of 34 and 48 inches.

The first delivery from 1927 included 20 units each from the Canadian Locomotive Company and the Montreal Locomotive Works, which were designated as class U-2a and U-2b. The frame of both series was partly made of vanadium steel and nickel steel. Some had a booster on a rear bogie axle that provided an additional starting tractive effort of 10,900 pounds. ALCO built ten more, almost identical locomotives for the Grand Trunk Western.

From 1929 a new version was produced in which the relationship between the flues and tubes in the boiler differed from the first series. The frames were now only made of nickel steel. Instead of the spoked wheels, the lighter boxpok wheels were now used. The first 20 examples of this design came from Montreal and were designated U-2c. From there came five more as U-2d in 1936 and 15 as U-2e in 1940. Also in 1940, ten U-2fs arrived from the Canadian Locomotive Company.

U-2d No. 6161. The Boxpok wheels can be seen in comparison with the U-2a
U-2d No. 6161. The Boxpok wheels can be seen in comparison with the U-2a
collection Taylor Rush

The last version had a smaller tube heating surface than the second version and therefore a larger superheater. The first 35 were completed in 1943 by the Montreal Locomotive Works as the U-2g. Later that year and in 1944, another 30 were made at the same plant, known as the U-2h.

One example still in existence today is U-2g No. 6213. It was used until 1959 and is now owned by the City of Toronto. It has been displayed at Exhibition Place and has been cared for by the Toronto Locomotive Preservation Society over the years. In 2009 she was transferred to a roundhouse, where she was cosmetically prepared in 2019. In its current condition, it is quite conceivable that it could be restored to operational condition in the future.

Another U-2g that still exists is number 6200 in Ottawa. This was recently rebuilt so that it now can be towed. Number 6218 sits in Fort Erie, Ontario but hasn't been restored yet.

VariantU-2a, bU-2c, d, e, fU-2g, h
General
Built19271929, 1936, 19401943-1944
ManufacturerCanadian Locomotive Co., Montreal Locomotive WorksMontreal Locomotive Works
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Wheelbase43 ft 10 in
Fixed wheelbase19 ft 6 in
Total wheelbase82 ft 5 in
Service weight396,390 lbs383,000 lbs400,300 lbs
Adhesive weight237,330 lbs232,200 lbs246,100 lbs
Total weight664,890 lbs660,900 lbs678,300 lbs
Water capacity13,931 us gal
Fuel capacity40,320 lbs (coal)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power4,000 hp (2,983 kW)3,950 hp (2,946 kW)
Optimal speed45 mph44 mph
Starting effort56,786 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter73 in
Boiler pressure250 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 25 1/2 x 30 in
Boiler
Grate area84.4 sq ft84.3 sq ft
Firebox area432 sq ft415 sq ft414 sq ft
Tube heating area3,812 sq ft3,805 sq ft3,666 sq ft
Evaporative heating area4,244 sq ft4,220 sq ft4,080 sq ft
Superheater area1,840 sq ft1,760 sq ft1,835 sq ft
Total heating area6,084 sq ft5,980 sq ft5,915 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
express
passenger
freight
last changed: 10/2023
Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific (Rock Island) classes R-65 and R-67
United States | 1929 | 85 produced
R-67b No. 5043 in October 1940 at Kansas City
R-67b No. 5043 in October 1940 at Kansas City
collection Taylor Rush

The first 65 Northerns of the Rock Island were delivered by ALCO in Schenectady in 1929 and 1930. They had a driver diameter of 69 inches and were primarily intended for service with freight trains. Some later received 74 inch wheels to be more suitable for passenger trains and were renamed the R-67 class as a result. In the years 1944 and 1946 further R-67bs were built, which had larger wheels from the start. Although they had a higher boiler pressure and a larger firebox, they had a smaller tube heating area and a significantly smaller superheater. The 1944 batch were oil fired while the rest were coal fired.

VariantR-65R-67
General
Built1929-19301944, 1946
ManufacturerALCO
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Wheelbase45 ft 7 in47 ft 1 in
Fixed wheelbase19 ft 3 in19 ft 9 in
Total wheelbase88 ft95 ft 11 in
Service weight434,000 lbs467,000 lbs
Adhesive weight265,500 lbs280,000 lbs
Total weight738,300 lbs837,500 lbs
Axle load66,375 lbs70,000 lbs
Water capacity15,000 us gal21,500 us gal
Fuel capacity40,000 lbs (coal)5,500 us gal (oil)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power4,400 hp (3,281 kW)4,800 hp (3,579 kW)
Optimal speed42 mph46 mph
Starting effort66,620 lbf67,088 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter69 in74 in
Boiler pressure250 psi270 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 26 x 32 in
Boiler
Grate area88.3 sq ft96.3 sq ft
Firebox area505 sq ft578 sq ft
Tube heating area4,938 sq ft3,995 sq ft
Evaporative heating area5,443 sq ft4,573 sq ft
Superheater area2,243 sq ft1,438 sq ft
Total heating area7,686 sq ft6,011 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
freight
passenger
last changed: 07/2023
Delaware, Lackawanna & Western class Q-1
United States | 1927 | 5 produced
No. 1504 in Scranton, Pennsylvania
No. 1504 in Scranton, Pennsylvania
collection Taylor Rush

The Lackawanna was one of the first US railroads to adopt the 4-8-4 wheel arrangement. In contrast to the Northern Pacific, these were not called “Northern” here, but “Poconos”. They were seen here as the successor to the 4-8-2 with a larger firebox. Thanks to thermic siphons and arch tubes, they came up with a firebox heating surface of 493 square feet. With a driver diameter of 77 inches, they were clearly intended for express trains, while a diameter of only 73 inches was chosen at the Northern Pacific. The later Poconos of the Lackawanna also had smaller wheels.

General
Built1927
ManufacturerALCO
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Wheelbase46 ft 8 in
Fixed wheelbase20 ft
Total wheelbase82 ft 2 1/2 in
Service weight421,000 lbs
Adhesive weight269,000 lbs
Axle load67,250 lbs
Water capacity12,000 us gal
Fuel capacity32,000 lbs (coal)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power4,500 hp (3,356 kW)
Optimal speed45 mph
Starting effort64,379 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter77 in
Boiler pressure250 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 27 x 32 in
Boiler
Grate area88.2 sq ft
Firebox area493 sq ft
Tube heating area4,700 sq ft
Evaporative heating area5,193 sq ft
Superheater area1,324 sq ft
Total heating area6,517 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
express
last changed: 05/2023
French State Railway 242 A
France | 1943 | only one produced
242 A 1 on an old postcard
242 A 1 on an old postcard

When the French State Railways were already planning the complete conversion to electric and diesel locomotives, André Chapelon designed an express steam locomotive with an output of 4,000 hp at the drawbar. As a basis, he used the Est 241-101, which had not made it into series production, and modified it accordingly. He converted the simple three-cylinder engine into a compound engine and provided the locomotive with optimized steam pipes and a Kylchap exhaust system.

The result was the most powerful steam locomotive ever built in Europe, producing between 5,230 and 5,430 hp (3,900 and 4,048 kW), depending on the source. While the original locomotive only had 2,550 hp on the drawbar, over 4,000 hp were now achieved and express trains heavier than 1,000 tonnes could be pulled. Up to 158 km/h were reached on test runs and approval was given for 130 km/h. The machine was put into service in 1951, but was only used sporadically due to the decision to electrify the network and was scrapped in 1961.

General
Built1943
ManufacturerFives-Lille
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length89 ft 8 in
Length loco58 ft 3 7/16 in
Empty weight299,387 lbs
Service weight326,284 lbs
Adhesive weight185,188 lbs
Total weight496,040 lbs
Axle load46,297 lbs
Water capacity8,982 us gal
Fuel capacity25,133 lbs (coal)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Indicated power5,230 hp (3,900 kW)
Optimal speed59 mph
Top speed81 mph
Starting effort56,787 lbf
with start valve68,144 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter76.8 in
Boiler pressure296 psi
Expansion typecompound
Cylindersthree, HP: 23 5/8 x 28 3/8 in
and LP: 26 3/4 x 29 15/16 in
Boiler
Grate area53.8 sq ft
Evaporative heating area2,720 sq ft
Superheater area1,294 sq ft
Total heating area4,014.1 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
express
prototype
André Chapelon
last changed: 08/2023
German Reichsbahn class 06
Germany | 1939 | 2 produced
Krupp works photo
Krupp works photo
DeGolyer Library, Southern Methodist University

For particularly heavy express trains on mountainous routes, two prototypes of the class 06 were built in 1939 as the only German steam locomotive with a 4-8-4 wheel arrangement. They got the boiler of the class 45 and streamlined cladding. As with the 45, the boiler with the overly long tubes caused problems. There were also occasional derailments in narrow switches. Due to the Second World War, there was no series production and after the end of the war, no revised machines were built due to a lack of demand.

General
Built1939
ManufacturerKrupp
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length87 ft 0 1/8 in
Wheelbase47 ft 8 1/16 in
Fixed wheelbase22 ft 1 3/4 in
Total wheelbase73 ft 7 7/8 in
Empty weight286,160 lbs
Service weight312,615 lbs
Adhesive weight176,370 lbs
Total weight496,921 lbs
Axle load44,092 lbs
Water capacity10,039 us gal
Fuel capacity22,046 lbs (coal)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Indicated power2,763 hp (2,060 kW)
Optimal speed32 mph
Top speed87 mph
Starting effort55,805 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter78.7 in
Boiler pressure290 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylindersthree, 20 1/2 x 28 3/8 in
Boiler
Grate area54.3 sq ft
Firebox area202.4 sq ft
Tube heating area2,908.6 sq ft
Evaporative heating area3,111 sq ft
Superheater area1,426.2 sq ft
Total heating area4,537.2 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
express
streamline
prototype
last changed: 02/2023
Great Northern (US) class S-2
United States | 1930 | 14 produced
No. 2576 in front of 2579 im September 1946 in St. Paul, Minnesota
No. 2576 in front of 2579 im September 1946 in St. Paul, Minnesota
Len Hillyard / collection Taylor Rush

Compared to the S-1, the locomotives of the S-2 class received larger driving wheels with a diameter of 80 inches, as they were only intended for express trains. They also burned oil and now had cylinders measuring 29 by 29 inches. They showed up more than 50,000 pounds less on the scales thanks to a smaller boiler. Since the adhesive weight was also reduced as a result, the locomotives slipped more quickly when starting and had to be operated with great care. Nevertheless, from 1949 they were no longer needed for express trains such as the “Empire Builder” and also had to pull freight trains.

General
Built1930
ManufacturerBaldwin
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Wheelbase47 ft 9 in
Fixed wheelbase20 ft 9 in
Total wheelbase91 ft 2 in
Service weight420,900 lbs
Adhesive weight247,300 lbs
Total weight747,460 lbs
Axle load61,825 lbs
Water capacity17,250 us gal
Fuel capacity5,800 us gal (oil)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power4,500 hp (3,356 kW)
Optimal speed49 mph
Starting effort58,305 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter80 in
Boiler pressure225 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 29 x 29 in
Boiler
Grate area97.8 sq ft
Firebox area401 sq ft
Tube heating area4,380 sq ft
Evaporative heating area4,781 sq ft
Superheater area2,265 sq ft
Total heating area7,046 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
express
last changed: 04/2023
Lehigh Valley classes T-1 to T-3
United States | 1931 | 47 produced
T-2b No. 5215 while taking water
T-2b No. 5215 while taking water
collection Taylor Rush

The Lehigh Valley used the 4-8-4, which they dubbed “Wyoming” after the Wyoming Valley in Pennsylvania, primarily for freight trains. After one prototype each from Baldwin and ALCO, ten more were procured as T-1a and T-2a. These had the most powerful booster of all US steam locomotives in the rear bogie. The T-3 was built by Baldwin from 1934 and was also suitable for passenger trains with larger wheels. The T-2b first emerged during World War II and was derived from the T-2a. Due to the lack of material, however, this was less refined and thus weighed more heavily.

VariantT-1aT-2aT-2bT-3
General
Built1931-193219431934-1935
ManufacturerBaldwinALCOBaldwin
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Wheelbase44 ft 11 in45 ft 7 in45 ft 11 in
Fixed wheelbase19 ft 3 in20 ft
Total wheelbase94 ft 10 1/2 in95 ft 5 1/2 in95 ft95 ft 2 in
Service weight413,170 lbs422,000 lbs451,000 lbs435,000 lbs
Adhesive weight270,000 lbs268,000 lbs274,500 lbs272,200 lbs
Total weight811,470 lbs780,800 lbs840,100 lbs824,000 lbs
Axle load67,500 lbs67,000 lbs68,625 lbs68,300 lbs
Water capacity20,000 us gal18,000 us gal20,000 us gal
Fuel capacity60,000 lbs (coal)56,000 lbs (coal)60,000 lbs (coal)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power4,400 hp (3,281 kW)4,475 hp (3,337 kW)4,600 hp (3,430 kW)5,000 hp (3,729 kW)
Optimal speed42 mph43 mph44 mph48 mph
Starting effort66,391 lbf66,982 lbf66,391 lbf
Booster18,360 lbf12,300 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter70 in77 in
Boiler pressure250 psi255 psi275 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 27 x 30 intwo, 26 x 32 intwo, 27 x 30 in
Boiler
Grate area88.3 sq ft96.5 sq ft
Firebox area490 sq ft508 sq ft494 sq ft507 sq ft
Tube heating area4,932 sq ft4,933 sq ft4,882 sq ft4,932 sq ft
Evaporative heating area5,422 sq ft5,441 sq ft5,376 sq ft5,439 sq ft
Superheater area2,256 sq ft2,243 sq ft2,095 sq ft2,056 sq ft
Total heating area7,678 sq ft7,684 sq ft7,471 sq ft7,495 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
freight
passenger
express
booster
last changed: 03/2023
New Zealand Railways class K (1932)
New Zealand | 1932 | 30 produced
K 900 in the year 1932
K 900 in the year 1932
Albert Percy Godber / Godber Collection, Alexander Turnbull Library

Since the three Class G Garratts procured in 1928 could not convince due to various problems, a new, powerful locomotive for heavy passenger and freight trains was needed for the mountainous North Island Main Trunk Railway. In order to be able to avoid further problems with articulated locomotives, a heavy locomotive with a 4-8-2 wheel arrangement was initially planned. A major problem with the limited loading gauge of the Cape gauge routes was getting the most powerful locomotive possible to operate under these conditions. The locomotives were designated class K after the previous class of the same designation, supplied from the USA in 1877, was phased out towards the end of the 1920's.

The design that finally came to fruition had a boiler of the maximum practicable diameter. The trailing axle was replaced with a bogie so that a large firebox could also be carried. In order to be able to arrange the largest possible cylinders within the loading gauge, they were designed with a diameter of just 20 inches and a long stroke of 26 inches. The Heusinger valve gear initially caused problems due to the excessively long piston travel, but these could be remedied by reducing the travel from eight to 7.25 inches.

The total number of 30 engines replaced mainly the 4-8-2 Class X locomotives. They performed very well with heavy trains and were mostly converted to oil firing after the Second World War due to the lack of coal. The changes made were carried out in parallel with their successors of the KA class. Since there were frequent frame fractures in the area of the firebox in the K class, new frames of the same design as in the KA were installed.

Although the switch to diesel traction took place in the mid-fifties, several examples of the class were still being overhauled at that time. All engines were finally decommissioned between 1964 and 1967. A total of three examples were preserved, two of which were last used as stationary steam generators. One of these two engines, as well as one that was recently exhibited in a museum, were selected for a renewed refurbishment in 2013 and 2014 respectively.

Variantcoaloil
General
Built1932-1936
ManufacturerHutt
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge3 ft 6 in (Cape gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length69 ft 8 in
Wheelbase34 ft 10 in
Fixed wheelbase14 ft 3 in
Total wheelbase61 ft 10 1/2 in
Service weight194,208 lbs
Adhesive weight123,872 lbs
Total weight301,728 lbs
Axle load30,968 lbs
Water capacity6,005 us gal
Fuel capacity17,360 lbs (coal)1,885 us gal (oil)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power1,500 hp (1,119 kW)1,600 hp (1,193 kW)
Optimal speed29 mph31 mph
Top speed65 mph
Starting effort32,741 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter54 in
Boiler pressure200 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 20 x 26 in
Boiler
Grate area47.7 sq ft
Firebox area190 sq ft
Tube heating area1,732 sq ft
Evaporative heating area1,922 sq ft
Superheater area428 sq ft
Total heating area2,350 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
passenger
freight
last changed: 03/2022
New Zealand Railways classes KA and KB
New Zealand | 1939 | 35 produced
K<sup>A</sup> 946 around 1939
KA 946 around 1939
Albert Percy Godber / Godber Collection, Alexander Turnbull Library
VariantKAKB
General
Built1939-1945, 19501939
ManufacturerHutt, HillsideHillside
Axle config4-8-4 (Northern) 
Gauge3 ft 6 in (Cape gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length69 ft 8 in
Wheelbase34 ft 10 in
Fixed wheelbase14 ft 3 in
Service weight208,320 lbs214,591 lbs
Adhesive weight126,336 lbs125,441 lbs
Total weight326,815 lbs330,847 lbs
Axle load31,583 lbs31,361 lbs
Water capacity6,005 us gal
Fuel capacity1,885 us gal (oil)16,800 lbs (coal)
Power
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power1,600 hp (1,193 kW)1,500 hp (1,119 kW)
Optimal speed31 mph29 mph
Top speed75 mph
Starting effort32,741 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter54 in
Boiler pressure200 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 20 x 26 in
Boiler
Grate area47.7 sq ft
Firebox area190 sq ft
Tube heating area1,732 sq ft
Evaporative heating area1,922 sq ft
Superheater area392 sq ft
Total heating area2,314 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
passenger
freight
booster
last changed: 09 2023
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