Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era
More from David Ives archive
A report from the Flour Mill Locomotive Repair Shop
On behalf of the Bodmin & Wenford Railway Trust we overhauled the boiler of 1916-built GWR 2-8-0 tank 4247 (owned by 4247 Ltd), which needed a complete new steel backhead along with other significant work: the work also involved a lot more than just the boiler. It took just over a year and 4700 hours, 60% on the boiler. 4247 returned to Bodmin in November 2011.
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The Great Western Railway (GWR) 4200 Class is a class of 2-8-0T steam locomotives. They were designed for short-haul coal trips from coal mines to ports in South Wales, working 1000+ ton coal trains through the Welsh valleys. The locomotives were built with large boilers and narrow side tanks; these engines would pass numerous water stops along their routes so the limited tank capacity was not a constraint. Because of the class’s heavy water consumption and limited tank capacity they were nicknamed “Water Carts”.
Many of the lines in South Wales had sharp curves. To traverse these curves, the locomotives were constructed with side play in the trailing driving wheels and coupling rods with spherical joints to allow for movement in any direction.
The later 5205 Class were very similar.
105 4200s were build between 1910 and 1923. Fourteen of these were rebuilt between 1937 and 1939 as 2-8-2T of the 7200 Class. In later years many of the remainder were upgraded to 5205 specification with outside steam pipes, larger cylinders and in some cases curved frames at the front end.