The reference for locomotives and railcars


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Empress Elisabeth Railway series I and II
Imperial-Royal State Railways classes 12 and 21
Austria-Hungary | 1858 | 84 produced
KEB I as kkStB 12.20 with driver's cab and Kobel chimney
KEB I as kkStB 12.20 with driver's cab and Kobel chimney
Hermann von Littrow

In 1851, Bavaria and Austria had sealed a state treaty that several railways should be built to connect the two countries. A total of 54 Series I express locomotives were procured for the first line to be opened from Vienna via Linz to Salzburg. The locomotives were built in several workshops: 18 in the Wiener Neustadt locomotive factory, 24 by the Staats-Eisenbahngesellschaft factory and six by Sigl. It was not until 1863 that the last six pieces followed from the KEB's own workshop. After the entire route had been opened, a big party was held in the Vienna Augarten on August 15, 1860, which was also attended by the passengers of the first train that had arrived from Munich via Salzburg with a Series I locomotive.

As was usual at the time, the locomotives did not have a driver's cab. Proper cabs were only retrofitted later, as were Kobel chimneys to protect against flying sparks. Despite the driving wheel diameter of only 1,580 mm, they were initially used in express train services.

Between 1869 and 1872, 30 more Series II locomotives followed, most of which had been manufactured by the KEB workshop. They had the same driving wheel diameter and the same wheel arrangement, but were slightly heavier. Both series were equipped with outside cylinders, but the series I still had an inner frame and the series II had an outer frame. The boiler pressure was now nine instead of seven bars. The engineer Johann Zeh installed the so-called Zehn flap, with the help of which one could direct air into the cylinders when the regulator was closed and whose compression could be used as an additional brake.

Schematic drawing of the Series I as delivered
Schematic drawing of the Series I as delivered
Die Lokomotive, September 1907

In the 1880s, the Series I locomotives received new boilers that could be operated at 10 bars. The grate area was increased and the heating surface decreased, which improved their relation to each other and brought the boiler into line with the II series. These too were later operated with ten bars. The Series I locomotives survived with the k.k. State railways as series 12 until 1904, their successors became series 21, even came to the BBÖ and were retired in 1928.

ManufacturerWiener Neustadt, StEG, Sigl, KEBWiener Neustadt, StEG
Axle config2-4-0 (Porter) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length27 ft 7 3/4 in29 ft 8 15/16 in
Wheelbase11 ft 2 13/16 in11 ft 2 3/4 in
Fixed wheelbase5 ft 5 3/8 in5 ft 5 13/16 in
Empty weight65,698 lbs69,225 lbs
Service weight73,414 lbs78,044 lbs
Adhesive weight49,163 lbs52,029 lbs
Water capacity2,245 us gal2,774 us gal
Fuel capacity9,921 lbs (coal)14,330 lbs (coal)
Power sourcesteam
Estimated power335 hp (250 kW)469 hp (350 kW)
Optimal speed23 mph25 mph
Top speed40 mph43 mph
Starting effort9,481 lbf12,190 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter62.2 in
Boiler pressure102 psi130 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 16 9/16 x 24 7/8 in
Grate area14.5 sq ft20.9 sq ft
Firebox area79.7 sq ft85 sq ft
Tube heating area1,338 sq ft1,249.7 sq ft
Evaporative heating area1,417.6 sq ft1,334.7 sq ft
Total heating area1,417.6 sq ft1,334.7 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
last changed: 04/2022

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