GWR 2800 Class
|GWR 2800 Class|
GWR 2803 in photographic grey livery.
|Designer||George Jackson Churchward|
|Builder||GWR Swindon Works|
|Build date||1903, 1905–1919|
|Gauge||4 ft 8 1⁄2 in (1,435 mm)|
|3 ft 2 in (0.965 m)|
|Driver diameter||4 ft 7 1⁄2 in (1.410 m)|
|Minimum curve||7 chains (460 ft; 140 m) normal,
6 6 chains (400 ft; 120 m) slow
|Length||63 ft 2 1⁄4 in (19.26 m)|
|Width||8 ft 11 in (2.72 m)|
|Height||12 ft 11 1⁄4 in (3.94 m)|
|Axle load||17 tons 5 cwt (38,600 lb or 17.5 t) full|
|Weight on drivers||67 tons 10 cwt (151,200 lb or 68.6 t) full|
|Locomotive weight||75 tons 10 cwt (169,100 lb or 76.7 t) full|
|Water capacity||3,500 imp gal (16,000 l; 4,200 US gal)|
|Boiler pressure||225 lbf/in2 (1.55 MPa)|
|Firegrate area||27.07 sq ft (2.515 m2)|
|1,686.60 sq ft (156.690 m2)|
|– Firebox||154.78 sq ft (14.380 m2)|
|Superheater type||4-element or 6-element|
|Superheater area||4-element: 191.8 sq ft (17.82 m2),
6-element: 253.38 sq ft (23.540 m2)
|Cylinder size||18.5 in × 30 in (470 mm × 762 mm)|
|Tractive effort||35,380 lbf (157.4 kN)|
|Railroad(s)||GWR » BR|
|Power class||GWR: E
|Axle load class||GWR: Blue|
|Disposition||Seven preserved, remainder scrapped|
The prototype, originally numbered 97 but later renumbered 2800, appeared in 1903. Construction of the production series commenced in 1905 and continued until 1919. The 2884 Class which appeared in 1938–1942 was developed from the 2800 class and is sometimes classified with it.
No.97 undertook two years of trials before going into production. Initial results suggested that only the front end needed further development. Initially the boiler pressure of the 2-8-0 was set at 200 lbf/in2 (1.4 MPa) with 18-inch (457 mm) diameter cylinders. Tractive effort started out at 29,775 lbf (132.45 kN) but was increased substantially in the production engines by enlarging the cylinder diameter to 18 1⁄2 in (470 mm) and raising the steam pressure to 225 lbf/in2 (1.55 MPa). The 8 1⁄2 in (216 mm) piston valves were enlarged to 10 in (254 mm).
The most visible difference between No.97 and the first of the 1905 production batch was the higher pitch of the boiler (8 ft 2 in or 2.49 m opposed to 7 ft 8 1⁄2 in or 2.35 m). At first the prototype was given a 4,000-imperial-gallon (18,000 l; 4,800 US gal) tender but almost without exception the 2800s were harnessed to the 3,500-imperial-gallon (16,000 l; 4,200 US gal) variety throughout their working lives. Superheating was incorporated into the class from 1909 with No.2808 the first to be retro-fitted. Other modifications centred on improving the weight distribution, altering smokebox lengths and fitting larger diameter chimneys. The 84 2800s built by Churchward remained the GWR's principal long haul freight engines throughout the 1920s and 1930s. The only serious problem met with in traffic was with the sealing of the internal steam pipes. Beginning in 1934 most of the class had them replaced with the outside kind.
Between 1945 and 1947, coal shortages caused GWR to experiment with oil fired 2800 locomotives and 12 of the 2800 class were converted, as were eight of the 2884 class. They were renumbered into the 4800 series, which necessitated re-numbering the entire 4800 class autotanks into the 1400 series, and reclassified as 1400 class. The experiment, encouraged by the government was abandoned in 1948 once the extra maintenance costs were calculated and the bill had arrived for the imported oil.
The year 1948 also saw one of the 2800 class, No.3803, emerge remarkably successfully from trials against more modern engines including the LMS 8F and the WD Austerity 2-8-0 and WD Austerity 2-10-0. It took the appearance in 1954 of the British Railways BR standard class 9F 2-10-0 to displace the 2800s from their main role of mineral haulage. Nevertheless there was still work for them right up to the end of steam on the Western region in 1965. Six decades of service testify to the fundamental excellence of Churchward's original conception.
Six 2800 class locomotives survive, these being 2807, 2818, 2857, 2859, 2873, 2874, along with nine 2884 class locomotives. A seventh survivor is being used as a donor locomotive.
- No. 2807 is in service on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway
- No. 2818 is on static display at the National Railway Museum
- No. 2857 is in service on the Severn Valley Railway
- No. 2859 is awaiting restoration on the Llangollen Railway
- No. 2873 is awaiting restoration on the South Devon Railway
- No. 2874 is awaiting restoration by Dinmore Manor Locomotive Ltd on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway
No. 2861 was built in 1918 at Swindon Works. It was withdrawn from service in 1963 and sent to Woodham Brothers scrapyard. The locomotive became one of the "Barry Ten", and remained stored at Barry without an owner until 2010, when it was bought by the Great Western Society at Didcot. In 2013, it became the final ex-Woodham Brothers locomotive to leave Barry when it was moved to the Llangollen Railway. The locomotive has now been dismantled and has donated its cylinder and saddle block to the construction of GWR 4700 Class 2-8-0 No. 4709, along with several other components.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to GWR 2800 Class.|
- Classic British Steam locomotives
- Whitehurst, Brian (1973). Great Western engines, names, numbers, types, classes: 1940 to preservation. Oxford: Oxford Publishing Company. pp. 27–28, 103, 130. ISBN 0-902888-21-8. OCLC 815661.
- Cotswold Steam Preservation Ltd. - Owners of No. 2807
- The 2857 Society
- 2818 Under restoration for the N.R.M. in 1966
- Llangollen Railway GWR Locomotive Group website
- Steam locomotives at Blaenavon