British Rail Class 97/6


British Rail Class 97/6

Infobox Locomotive
name = British Rail class 97/6
powertype = Diesel-elctric



caption = Locomotive 97651 at Pitsford and Brampton station on the Northampton & Lamport Railway.
roadnumber = PWM 650–654 "later" 97650–97654
builder = Ruston & Hornsby
builddate = 1952 (1), 1959 (4)
serialnumber = 312990, 431758–431761
gauge = RailGauge|ussg|lk=on
primemover = Ruston 6VPH
rpmrange = 1,250 rpm (max)
poweroutput = convert|165|hp|abbr=on
generator = BTH RTB6034
tractionmotors = BTH RTA5041 (nose-suspended), 1 off
uicclass = C
whytetype = 0-6-0
wheeldiameter = 97650: convert|3|ft|2+1/2|in|m|3|abbr=on
97651-97654: convert|3|ft|4|in|m|3|abbr=on
locobrakes = Straight air
trainbrakes = 97650: none
97651–97654: vacuum
length =
width =
height =
weight = 97650: convert|28|LT
97651-97654: convert|30|LT
topspeed = convert|20|mph|abbr=on|lk=on
tractiveeffort = convert|17000|lbf|kN|1|abbr=on|lk=on
axleloadclass = RA 1
railroad = British Railways’ Western Region Chief Civil Engineer's department
The British Rail Class 97/6 0-6-0 diesel shunting locomotives were purpose-built for departmental duties by Ruston & Hornsby at Lincoln in 1953 (97650) or 1959 (97651-654). There are minor technical differences between 97650 and the 1959 batch.

This class of five locomotives is outwardly similar to the Class 04 locomotives built around the same time but, internally, they are quite different. The Class 97/6 is diesel-electric while the Class 04 is diesel-mechanical.

Overview

The fleet was originally numbered PWM650-654 in the Western Region Permanent Way Machines series, but were renumbered into the Class 97 series between 1979-1981. Locomotives were original painted in BR Green livery, which was later superseded by BR Blue and finally Civil Engineering Yellow liveries. They were employed at various locations, including Reading West (97650/653/654), Gloucester / Cardiff Canton (97651) and Plymouth Laira (97652).

pecification

* Diesel engine: Ruston 6VPH of 165 bhp (123kW) at 1,250 rpm
* Transmission: Electric,
** Main generator: 1 x British Thomson-Houston RTB6034
** Traction motor: 1 x British Thomson-Houston RTA5041 (nose-suspended)
* Driving wheel diameter,
** 97650: 3ft 2½in (978 mm)
** 97651-654: 3ft 4in (1,016 mm)
* Weight,
** 97650: 28 tons (29 tonnes)
** 97651-654: 30 tons (31 tonnes)
* Maximum tractive effort: 17,000 lb (75 kN)
* Maximum speed: 20 mph (32 kph)
* Brake type: Straight air on locomotive, automatic vacuum for train

A special feature of this class is that the electric traction motor can be disengaged from the wheels. This allows the locomotive to be hauled by another locomotive at speeds above 20 mph.

Withdrawal

With the privatisation of British Rail these locomotives were largely made redundant. Three locomotives had already been withdrawn from traffic, and only nos. 97651 and 97654 survived long enough to pass into English, Welsh and Scottish Railway ownership. Number 97654 was sold to an infrastructure company based in Edinburgh, and remained in use until 2005, when it was preserved. Number 97651 was one of the first locomotives sold by EWS into preservation.

Preservation

Three of the five locomotives have been preserved on heritage railways.
*97650 - Lincolnshire Wolds Railway
*97651 - Strathspey Railway
*97654 - Heritage Shunters Trust

Incomplete remains of 97653 [http://www.preservedshunters.co.uk/psh_zoom.php?
] are stored at the former Ministry of Defence depot at Long Marston, Warwickshire. This is the location of the Stratford on Avon and Broadway Railway Society (SBRS) but 97653 is not owned by the SBRS.

Fleet details

Modelling

* An etched brass kit is available from Judith Edge Kits [http://www.ukmodelshops.co.uk/catalogue/judithedge.shtml]

ources

* Ian Allan ABC of British Railways Locomotives, winter 1962/3 edition, page 238
* Locomotive Datafile, page 99, published 1988 by Metro Enterprises, ISBN 0 947773 10 X

External links

* [http://mysite.orange.co.uk/heritageshuntertrust/Shunters.htm Heritage Shunters Trust - owners of 97654.]
* [http://therailwaycentre.com/New%20Loco%20Tech%20Data/PWM.html Information and details on TheRailwayCentre.Com website.]
* [http://www.nlr.org.uk/stock/pwm651.htm PWM651 info page] at [http://www.nlr.org.uk Northampton & Lamport Railway]
* [http://www.departmentals.com departmentals.com]
* [http://www.preservedshunters.co.uk/psh_class_br.php?class=97 PWM page at Preserved Shunters]


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