The reference for locomotives and railcars


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Great Northern (UK) classes J5 and J4
London & North Eastern classes J4 and J3
Great Britain | 1901 | 322 produced
LNER No. 4142 in September 1947 in Immingham depot
LNER No. 4142 in September 1947 in Immingham depot
Ben Brooksbank / An ex-GN 0-6-0 at Immingham Locomotive Depot

The design of the J5 goes back to the design of Patrick Stirling's “Standard Goods” which were built from 1867 and are known as the Class J7. As a direct development, the J6 was built from 1873, in which the boiler diameter was increased by two inches from 4 feet and 1/2 inch, the cylinder diameter grew from 24 to 26 inches and which now had splashers around the wheels.

After the last ten J6s received other 4ft 5in diameter boilers, 133 new locomotives were built in 1903 with these boilers and designated J5. 125 of the 170 J6 were then also converted to the J5. Twelve almost identical locomotives went to the Midland & Great Northern Joint Railway. The J5s could often be found double-headed in front of heavy coal trains running non stop from Peterborough to London. In some cases, however, they were even used in front of local trains. During the First World War, 26 engines were drafted by the ROD and taken to France. They received a condensation device to reduce the visible vapor plume, which was removed again when they returned to Great Britain.

From 1912 Nigel Gresley began rebuilding the J5 into a new class called the J4. A new boiler was used, which now had a diameter of 4 feet and 8 inches and was actually intended for the 4-4-0 class D2 locomotives. Prior to the grouping, 71 examples were rebuilt, which then became the J3 in the newly formed LNER, while the remaining J5s became the new class J4. By 1929, the LNER had rebuilt a further 82 units. During this time, the task area of the locomotives shifted to shunting tasks and local freight trains, since more powerful locomotives were now available for transporting heavy freight trains on main lines. Gradually the number of locomotives was reduced, with some being sold to coal mines. A few examples made it to British Railways in 1948, the last unconverted being retired in 1951 and the last converted in 1954.

VariantJ5rebuilt J4
Axle config0-6-0 (Six-coupled) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Wheelbase15 ft 6 in
Fixed wheelbase15 ft 6 in
Total wheelbase36 ft 11 1/2 in
Service weight92,400 lbs95,424 lbs
Adhesive weight92,400 lbs95,424 lbs
Total weight170,576 lbs181,664 lbs
Axle load34,048 lbs35,840 lbs
Fuel capacitycoal
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power600 hp (447 kW)650 hp (485 kW)
Optimal speed21 mph22 mph
Starting effort18,558 lbf19,104 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter62 in
Boiler pressure170 psi175 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 17 1/2 x 26 in
Grate area16.3 sq ft
Firebox area103 sq ft105 sq ft
Tube heating area1,016 sq ft1,130 sq ft
Evaporative heating area1,119 sq ft1,235 sq ft
Total heating area1,119 sq ft1,235 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
Henry Alfred Ivatt
last changed: 09/2022

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