The reference for locomotives and railcars
German Reichsbahn class 6510
Germany | 1954 | 88 produced
65 1049 in June 1978 in Saalfeld
65 1049 in June 1978 in Saalfeld
Werner und Hansjörg Brutzer

At the beginning of the 1950s, the Reichsbahn developed two tank locomotives with a 2-8-4T wheel arrangement to replace a large number of old models, most of which dated back to the Länderbahn era. One of them was the class 6510, which with an axle load of 17.5 tonnes was suitable for main lines and well-developed secondary lines. The numbering from 1000 upwards indicates that this was a new locomotive and also made it easier to distinguish it from the Bundesbahn class 65 with the same wheel arrangement. At the same time, the class 8310 was created, which had an axle load of only 15 tonnes and was therefore slower and less powerful.

Following the trend of the time, the frame and boiler of the new locomotive were welded. A mixing preheater was also installed above the smoke box, which heated and softened the boiler feed water. In this way, water savings of more than 10 percent could be achieved. The advantage of the selected axle arrangement with a rear bogie was that the water tank could be designed very generously for a tank locomotive. There was space for 9 tonnes of coal and 16 cubic meters of water. As with all new Reichsbahn builds, the design was optimized for operation with the inferior lignite, with the dimensioning of the grate area playing a particularly important role. The 65 1004 was the only tank locomotive to be converted to pulverized coal firing, but this was reversed in 1962.

The Reichsbahn procured a total of 88 units, the first two of which were manufactured by LEW Hennigsdorf and the rest by Lokomotivbau Karl Marx Babelsberg. Seven more were produced for the chemical combine Leuna. An important area of application for the locomotives of the Reichsbahn were double-decker trains. Since there were also push-pull trains among them, nine engines were equipped with push-pull train controls. After class V 180 diesel locomotives had taken over these tasks, class 6510 locomotives almost exclusively pulled freight trains. They were decommissioned by 1977 and today there are still three units that were subsequently used as heating locomotives and therefore survived.

ManufacturerLEW Hennigsdorf, LKM Babelsberg
Axle config2-8-4T (Berkshire) 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length57 ft 5 in
Wheelbase43 ft 7 5/8 in
Empty weight195,991 lbs
Service weight268,302 lbs
Adhesive weight156,528 lbs
Axle load38,581 lbs
Water capacity4,227 us gal
Fuel capacity19,842 lbs (coal)
Power sourcesteam
Indicated power1,479 hp (1,103 kW)
Optimal speed21 mph
Top speed56 mph
Starting effort45,410 lbf
Power Plant
Driver diameter63 in
Boiler pressure232 psi
Expansion typesimple
Cylinderstwo, 23 5/8 x 26 in
Grate area37.1 sq ft
Firebox area168.3 sq ft
Tube heating area1,418.7 sq ft
Evaporative heating area1,587 sq ft
Superheater area510.1 sq ft
Total heating area2,097.1 sq ft
Calculated Values
steam locomotive
tank locomotive
last changed: 01/2022

We use cookies to save the following settings:

  • selected navigation structure
  • selected language
  • preferred units
  • spelling of railway company names

If you refuse the use of cookies, the settings will only be retained for the current session and will be reset to the default values the next time you visit the site.

Display of units

Here you can set the desired unit system for the technical data.

  • Metric: Lengths in meters, weights in tonnes, and volumes in cubic meters
  • Imperial (UK): Lengths in feet/inches, weights in long tons and volumes in imperial gallons
  • Imperial (US): Lengths in feet/inches, weights in pounds, and volumes in US gallons
  • Individual: Depends on the country of origin of each locomotive
Operator names

Here you can set the display of railway company names.

  • Short: Abbreviation or short form of the name
  • Standard: commonly used name, partially translated to English
  • Complete: full name in local language