Hybrid Krauss Locomotive

Sheffield Steam & Heritage Centre


A train on the tracks

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The little 7-ton Krauss hybrid loco, a combination of Krauss b/n 5800 & 5682, working at the Redwater Creek Tramway in 1997.

It now carries No.1 and is evidently wood fired, judging by the wood stack jammed into the cab!

This photo was kindly contributed by Russell Dunn.


Lokomotivfabrik Krauss & Co,

Munich, Germany

Builder’s Number & Year

5800 of 1907 (chassis)

5682 of 1906 (boiler & superstructure)

Wheel Arrangement



This small locomotive is a hybrid created in the preservation era by combining two machines, Krauss b/n 5800 & b/n 5682:

·        Krauss b/n 5800 of 1907 (0-4-0WT): originally Zeehan Tramway Company No.2, and last used at Renison Associated Tin Mines where its boiler and other parts were used to rebuild sister b/n 4087, while the chassis was stored.

·        Krauss b/n 5682 of 1906 (2-4-0T): built for the Sandfly Colliery Company for their isolated line at Margate, south of Hobart. Last used on the Ida Bay Railway by the Carbide & Electro Products Company, it was dismantled circa 1948.

Both locomotives had several owners and moved around the state during their working careers, as detailed by Bruce Macdonald in his article ‘Krauss Locomotives in Australia – A close look at their characteristics and an overview of their migrations’ as referenced below.

In 1962, the Tasmanian Steam Preservation Society acquired the remains of both locomotives, and the serviceable components were combined by 1972 to create an operable machine for their Second River Tramway at Karoola. (It would be interesting to know if the 2-4-0T chassis or other remains of b/n 5682 are still extant somewhere.) I don’t know if the hybrid locomotive retains the well tank from Krauss b/n 5800, but it certainly carries the side tanks of Krauss b/n 5682.

Given that a locomotive traditionally takes its identity from the frames, perhaps the 5800 / 5682 Krauss hybrid should be known as b/n 5800 ‘Zeehan Tramway Co. No.2’. In practice it carries the builder’s plate of b/n 5682, and ‘No.1’ in brass numbers on the cabside. In any case it is a wonderful little 0-4-0WT typical of the many small Krauss locomotives that worked in Tasmania.

The Second River Tramway at Karoola, south of Launceston, wasn’t on a major tourist route, and I understand site tenure issues developed over time. This old YouTube video from 1987 shows a rustic operation traversing rural fields with a running line of several hundred metres. Several traction engines were also on site.

The Redwater Creek Steam and Heritage Society Inc formed in 1993, ostensibly as a replacement for Second River Tramway. A new site was established at Sheffield, which is better located for passing tourist trade and potential development. It seems that much of the Second River collection moved to the Sheffield Steam & Heritage Centre, where the hybrid Krauss loco has remained in use on the Redwater Creek Tramway. More recently the little Krauss locomotive received new tyres in 1986, and a new firebox in 2003. The Redwater Creek Tramway starts from Sheffield Station on the former Tasmanian Government Railways branch from Railton to Roland, running across local fields to provide a demonstration line. Future development plans include a 4km extension along the formation of the Roland branch to the Redwater Creek Caves, taking in lush forest scenery and providing an enhanced sense of purpose and destination for visitors. Hopefully I will get a chance to visit this interesting site once COVID lockdown is over!

With thanks to my friend Chris Thompson for providing the following images of the hybrid Krauss loco at Sheffield, following his visit to the Redwater Creek Tramway on 5 December 2015.

A small train on the tracks

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The Hybrid Krauss loco in Christmas Livery, as photographed by Chris Thompson on 5 December 2015.

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A steam turbine generator can be seen mounted on the side tank, powering front & read electric headlights.

Steam traction engines also feature at the Sheffield Steam & Heritage Centre, and an operable exhibit can be seen in the background.

A person driving a small train

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The outside Stephenson valve gear can be seen in this view.

A small train on the tracks

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The hybrid Krauss locomotive is evidently wood fired! Here the crew are replenishing the wood pile stacked in the cab.

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Cabside view. I believe ‘No.1’ refers to the Sandfly Colliery Tramway where Krauss b/n 5682 was apparently the No.1 loco.


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Brass ‘Rebuilders Plate’ commemorating the creation of the Hybrid Krauss by the Tasmanian Steam Preservation Society

at their Karoola (Second River Tramway) workshop in 1972.

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Krauss Builder’s Plate detail, showing No.5682 of 1906 – Krauss Locomotive Works, Munich.

The high polish & Brasso residue shows the pride taken in this wonderful little loco’s appearance!



'Light Railways - Australia's Magazine of Industrial & Narrow-Gauge Railways',

Number 153, June 2000. Article ‘Krauss Locomotives in Australia –

A close look at their characteristics and an overview of their migrations’ by Bruce Macdonald.

Published by Light Railway Research Society of Australia Inc. pp.10-18.

(This article is also available online.)


Website for Sheffield Steam and Heritage Centre, rolling stock page,

retrieved 10 September 2021.


Wikipedia page for Lokomotivfabrik Krauss & Co / George Krauss,

retrieved 10 September 2021.


Wikipedia page for Sandfly Colliery Tramway,

retrieved 14 September 2021.

Page updated: 14 September 2021

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