Featured Locomotive for November 2012

Southern Railway M7

It is many months since we have discussed British locomotives other than Rocket, The Black Five, the Flying Scotsman. However there is quite a large range of small and rather pretty branch line locomotives. This month we have chosen the Southern Railway M7, a 0-4-4T designed by Dugald Drummond in 1897 for the South Western Railway. Originally designed as a suburban tank loco, it was powerful enough to be used on semi fast mainlines, and of course was copied by other railway companies, including Caledonian Railway, North British Railway. Up to 1911, 115 locos were built and they remained largely unaltered through out their existence, minor changes were made to the coal hopper to accommodate larger range operations.

They were powerful and fast runners used from Waterloo to Portsmouth, Exeter to Plymouth and Bournemouth to Weymouth but a derailment in 1898 caused engineers to criticise the use of a light engine on a fast train. They returned to suburban traffic until the start of their decline from 1930 due to electrization after which they were used round Waterloo shunting empty trains of up to twelve coaches. Taken over by British Rail, the first was scrapped in 1948, the last in 1958.

Southern 180

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Weight in working order 60 tons 60960kg
Cylinders 2  
Bore 18 inch 460mm
Stroke 26 inch 660mm
Driving wheel dia. 67 inch 1702mm
Boiler Pressure 175psi 1170kpa
Water Capacity 1300 gallons 5900L
Coal Capacity 3 tons 3.05 tons
Tractive effort 19755 lbs  
Length Maximum 34ft 3ins 10m 439mm
Height 13ft 5.5 ins  

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