Yx 141

Restored to working order

 

This photo is kindly provided by Glenn Harris and shows newly-restored Yx 141 in steam at Quorn.

It is temporarily paired with the tender of NM25 as reassembly continues.

Builder

James Martin & Co, Gawler, SA

Builder’s Number & Year

43 of 1892

Wheel Arrangement

2-6-0

No. in class

129

 

Yx 141 was originally built as Y 141 to the design of the successful Beyer-Peacock "Y class" 2-6-0 locomotives, which were built in large numbers to become mainstays of the SAR narrow-gauge locomotive fleet at that time.

This locomotive was later rebuilt by the SAR to "Yx" specification, increasing the boiler pressure from 140psi to 185psi via a higher-pitch Belpaire boiler, although saturated steam was retained.

Following withdrawal by the SAR, Yx 141 was plinthed in a park at Port Lincoln.  Like many park engines, Yx 141 began to deteriorate but fortunately it was obtained by the Pichi Richi Railway in 1983 and transferred to Quorn, where it was placed in the long-term storage shed to protect against further corrosion.

The Pichi Richi Railway subsequently began an initiative to restore Yx 141 to operation.  The locomotive has been found to be in surprisingly good condition, with the boiler and fittings only requiring cosmetic work.  Apparently many of Yx 141's fittings are common to the T class, and various parts bear stamps from other SAR engines; the running gear came from Y 87, the driving axles are from various manufacturers and years ranging from Krupps in 1888 to Vickers & Sons and Maxim in 1905.  The smokebox door is from a Z class, and the regulator valve in the dome has still painted the address ex-stores in Islington with the order number.

Yx141 passed its hydrostatic boiler test in January, with the boiler refitted to the frames for initial steam tests in March 2012.  Unfortunately, a large crack was found in the right hand cylinder casting during steam testing in early 2012.  Since this time, patterns have been manufactured and two new cylinders have been cast, machined and fitted to the locomotive; restoration and reassembly work continues as funds and labour permit.

Glenn Harris has also provided this view of the cowcatcher being fitted.

Yx141's tender chassis under restoration in early 2012.  Photo contributed by Glenn Harris.

 

Yx 141 under steam test at Quorn in early 2012.  Photo contributed by Glenn Harris.

This earlier photo is kindly provided by Glenn Harris and shows the frame and tender of Yx 141 under restoration at Quorn.

 

Glenn Harris has kindly provided this photo showing the first paint applied to Yx 141's frames.

Yx 141's pony truck under restoration at Quorn; photo by Glenn Harris.

This image shows the frame and boiler of Yx 141 under restoration at Quorn.  Photo courtesy of Glenn Harris.

The side rods were refitted for the first time on 9 May 2011, as seen in this further view from Glenn Harris.

Pushing the engine unit up and down the shed showed the rods to be running true with no tight spots.

Photography in the PRR storage shed is challenging but I did manage to take this photograph in 1996

showing the brass numbers and the workshop plate 'Rebuilt 1923 Islington Works'.

 

References

a

Fluck R. E., Sampson R., & Bird K. J.

'Steam locomotives and Railcars of the South Australian Railways',

published by The Mile End Railway Museum (SA) Inc, 1986.

b

Information provided by D. Heah via email, 16 May 2015

c

Webmaster's observation or comment

 

Page updated:  23 June 2015

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