Beyer-Garratt No.402

402 is a Beyer-Garratt articulated locomotive which combines a boiler slung between two sets of driving wheels.  Water and coal tenders sit above the driving wheels, in front and behind the boiler respectively. Although a Beyer-Garratt is generally as powerful as two conventional (non-articulated) steam locomotives, it also has twice as many parts requiring maintenance!

Despite being relatively heavy, the Beyer-Garratt design provides low axle-loads by carrying the weight across a larger number of wheels, and thus Beyer-Garratts could often operate on lightly-laid branch lines. Articulation also allows a Beyer-Garratt to traverse sharp curves. The boiler design is more efficient than for a conventional steam locomotive due to a deep firebox design, the firebox not having to fit above the wheels.

402 was built in 1953 in Europe by a Société Franco Belge de Materiel (under licence to Beyer Peacock & Co) for the South Australian Railways as one of a class of 10 '400-class' locomotives, and was mainly used on the Broken Hill ore trains to Port Pirie.  402 was retired in 1970 and purchased for preservation by the Zig Zag Railway.

402 is an oil burner, unlike the other Zig Zag steam engines which burn coal. 402 has never worked on the Zig Zag but has recently been cleaned and painted. It may be converted to coal firing when eventually restored to operation.  This photo shows the cosmetically restored 402 displayed outside the Zig Zag Railway depot at Bottom Points on 3 November 2001.

 

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