Commonwealth Railways GM class

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Commonwealth Railways GM class
250px
Three Genesee & Wyoming Australia GM class locomotives in the Clare Valley in April 2008
Type and origin
Power type Diesel-electric
Builder Clyde Engineering, Granville
Model Electro-Motive Diesel A7, later model A16C
Build date 1951-67
Total produced 47
Specifications
UIC classification GM1-11 A1A-A1A
GM12-47 Co-Co
Gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Fuel type Diesel
Engine type V16
Cylinders 16
Performance figures
Power output GM1-11 1,119 kW (1,501 hp),
GM12-47 1,305 kW (1,750 hp)
Career
Operator(s) Commonwealth Railways
Number in class 47
Number(s) GM1-GM47
Preserved GM1, GM2, GM28, GM36
Current owner Genesee & Wyoming Australia
Southern Shorthaul Railroad
Disposition 11 in service, 3 preserved, 7 stored, 26 scrapped

The GM class are a class of diesel locomotives built by Clyde Engineering, Granville for the Commonwealth Railways in several batches between 1951 and 1967. As at January 2014 some remain in service with Genesee & Wyoming Australia and Southern Shorthaul Railroad.

History[edit]

Preserved GM2 at the National Railway Museum in July 2010
Two GM class on the Trans-Australian at Rawlinna in May 1986
GM class at Mount Gambier in April 1995
Three Genesee & Wyoming Australia GM class locomotives in the Clare Valley in April 2008

The design was based on the Electro-Motive Diesel EMD F7 locomotive.[1] The first 11 were delivered with EMD 16-567B, 1119 kW engines and four powered axles with the remainder having 16-567C, 1305 kW engines and six powered axles. The final 11 were fitted with dynamic braking.[2]

Delivered to operate on the Trans-Australian Railway, the first entered service in September 1951. Further orders saw 47 in service by December 1967. They operated on all of Commonwealth Railways's standard gauge lines including those to Broken Hill, Alice Springs and Adelaide when converted to standard gauge in 1970, 1980 and 1983 respectively.

In July 1975 all were included in the transfer of Commonwealth Railways to Australian National. In 1979 a few operated to Lithgow, New South Wales on trials, while in 1985 three were hired to V/Line during a period of motive power shortage.[3]

Apart from one destroyed in an accident in 1985, withdrawals began in 1988.[2] GM1 was placed on a plinth in Port Augusta, GM2 was donated to the National Railway Museum, Port Adelaide and GM3 to Clyde Engineering, Kelso.[4] By October 1994 only 15 remained in service.[5] A locomotive shortage saw Australian Southern Railroad return GM1 to service in December 1997.[6]

In 1998 Great Northern Rail Services purchased 12 from Australian Southern Railroad.[7] Most were scrapped for parts with only three returning to service seeing use in Melbourne and Sydney. Following Great Northern ceasing operations in 2003, these were sold to Chicago Freight Car Leasing Australia before being resold to Southern Shorthaul Railroad.[2]

In May 2005 Australian Railroad Group forwarded GM30 to Forrestfield workshops to be receive a 2237 kW engine, as fitted to the CLs. The project was never completed.[2][8]

In November 2010 the Department for Infrastructure & Transport placed GM1 in the custody of Rail Heritage WA.[9] In May 2012 Clyde Engineering sold GM3 to Southern Shorthaul Railroad and it was transferred to their Lithgow State Mine Heritage Park & Railway workshop for overhaul.

As at January 2014 the remaining operational examples are used by Genesee & Wyoming Australia on freight services in South Australia and Southern Shorthaul Railroad on infrastructure trains in New South Wales.[10][11][12][13]

Status table[edit]

Locomotive Entered Service Current Owner Livery Status
GM1 September 1951 Rail Heritage WA CR Maroon/Silver Stored, Dry Creek
GM2 November 1951 National Railway Museum CR Maroon/Silver Static Display
GM3 December 1951 Southern Shorthaul Railroad CR Maroon/Silver Overhaul, Lithgow State Mine Heritage Park & Railway
GM4 January 1952 - - Scrapped
GM5 January 1952 - - Scrapped
GM6 February 1952 - - Scrapped
GM7 March 1952 - - Scrapped
GM8 March 1952 - - Scrapped
GM9 April 1952 - - Scrapped
GM10 June 1952 Southern Shorthaul Railroad SSR Yellow Operational
GM11 July 1952 - - Scrapped
GM12 October 1955 Greentrains AN Green Stored, North Bendigo
GM13 November 1955 - - Scrapped
GM14 April 1956 - - Scrapped
GM15 April 1956 - - Scrapped
GM16 July 1956 - - Scrapped
GM17 March 1957 - - Scrapped
GM18 April 1957 - - Scrapped
GM19 May 1957 Railpower AN Green Overhaul, Goulburn Roundhouse
GM20 June 1957 - - Scrapped
GM21 July 1957 - - Scrapped
GM22 July 1962 Southern Shorthaul Railroad SSR Yellow Operational
GM23 August 1962 - - Scrapped
GM24 September 1962 - - Scrapped
GM25 October 1962 Braidies Tavern Bendigo AN Green Stored
GM26 November 1962 - - Scrapped
GM27 January 1963 Southern Shorthaul Railroad SSR Yellow Operational
GM28 February 1963 Seymour Railway Heritage Centre CR Maroon/Silver Stored, Seymour
GM29 March 1963 - - Scrapped
GM30 December 1964 - Undercoat Scrapped, cab preserved
GM31 January 1965 - - Scrapped
GM32 January 1965 Genesee & Wyoming Australia AN Green Stored, Dry Creek
GM33 March 1965 - - Scrapped
GM34 April 1965 Genesee & Wyoming Australia AN Green Stored, Dry Creek
GM35 April 1966 - - Scrapped
GM36 May 1966 Seymour Railway Heritage Centre CR Maroon/Silver Stored
GM37 June 1966 Genesee & Wyoming Australia GW Orange Operational
GM38 June 1966 Genesee & Wyoming Australia AN Green Operational
GM39 July 1966 - - Scrapped
GM40 January 1967 Genesee & Wyoming Australia AN Green Operational
GM41 February 1967 - - Scrapped, cab preserved
GM42 February 1967 Genesee & Wyoming Australia GW Orange Operational
GM43 March 1967 Genesee & Wyoming Australia GW Orange Operational
GM44 April 1967 Genesee & Wyoming Australia GW Orange Stored
GM45 May 1967 Genesee & Wyoming Australia GW Orange Operational
GM46 June 1967 Genesee & Wyoming Australia AN Green Operational
GM47 December 1967 Genesee & Wyoming Australia GW Orange Operational

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ GM1-class A1A-A1A diesel-electric locomotive No.2 National Railway Museum
  2. ^ a b c d Oberg, Leon (1980). Diesel Locomotives of Australia. Sydney: AH & AW Reed. p. 283. ISBN 0 589 50211 5. 
  3. ^ "Victorian Standard Gauge Report" Railway Digest July 1985 Page 201
  4. ^ "GM3" Railway Digest November 1990 page 395
  5. ^ "South Australian Motive Power Update" Railway Digest October 1994 page 14
  6. ^ "SA Snapshot" Railway Digest February 1998 page 31
  7. ^ "Great Northern Puts Faith in GM Chant" Railway Digest November 1998 page 16
  8. ^ Issue 104/10 West Australian Railscene e-mag 11 October 2010
  9. ^ GM1 Rail Heritage WA 2 November 2010
  10. ^ Standard Gauge GM Chris' Commonwealth Railway Pages
  11. ^ GM Class (GM1 to GM11) Railpage
  12. ^ GM Class (GM12 to GM47) Railpage
  13. ^ GM Class Vicsig

Bibliography[edit]

  • Fluck, Ronald E; Marshall, Barry; Wilson, John (1996). Locomotives and Railcars of the Commonwealth Railways. Welland, SA: Gresley Publishing. ISBN 1876216018.