British Rail Class 13

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British Rail Class 13
Class 13 no. 13003, permanently coupled Master-Slave locomotives, Tinsley Marshalling Yard, Nigel Tout, 6.8.74.jpg
13003 at Tinsley TMD
Type and origin
Power typeDiesel-electric
BuilderBritish Railways Darlington Works (builder and rebuilder)
Build date1965 (rebuilt)
Total produced3
 • Whyte0-6-0+0-6-0
Gauge4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Wheel diameter4 ft 6 in (1.372 m)
Wheelbase42 ft 1 12 in (12.84 m)
Length60 ft 1 in (18.31 m)
Width8 ft 6 in (2.59 m)
Height12 ft 8 12 in (3.87 m)
Loco weight120 long tons (122 t; 134 short tons)
Fuel capacity1,336 imp gal (6,070 l; 1,604 US gal)
Prime moverEnglish Electric 6KT, 2 off
Traction motorsEE, four off
TransmissionDiesel electric, double reduction gearing
MU workingNot fitted (except control of slave by master)
Train heatingNone
Train brakesVacuum
Performance figures
Maximum speed20 mph (32 km/h)
Power outputEngine: 350 hp (261 kW) × 2
Tractive effortMaximum: 70,000 lbf (311.4 kN)
Brakeforce37 long tons-force (370 kN)
OperatorsBritish Railways
NumbersD4500–D4502, later 13001–13003
Axle load classRA 8
Scrapped1982 (13002)
1985-6 (13001 and 13003)
DispositionAll scrapped

The British Rail Class 13 was a type of diesel-electric shunting locomotive. The type was designed in 1965 because of the need to provide more powerful shunters for the Tinsley Marshalling Yard. Because of Tinsley's status as a hump yard, it was not possible to use a single locomotive owing to the risk of grounding. So, to achieve the required power, a pair of Class 08 shunters were permanently coupled in 'master and slave' formation, with the slave unit having had its cab removed. Both units were then ballasted to improve traction. Initially coupled cab-to-cab, it was found more practical to couple master nose to slave cab.


With the end of hump shunting at Tinsley the class became obsolete. The unique qualities of the locomotives were not required elsewhere and so withdrawal was inevitable; 13002 was withdrawn in 1983, with the remaining two locomotives going with the closure of Tinsley hump in 1985. None of this unusual class survives.[1]


Three pairs were formed as follows:

Unit number Master unit Slave unit Withdrawn Fate Notes
Original TOPS
D4501 13001 D4190 D4189 January 1985 Scrapped at BREL Swindon, May 1985 [2]
D4502 13002 D4187 D3697 June 1981 Scrapped at BREL Swindon, October 1982 [3]
D4500 13003 D4188 D3698 January 1985 Scrapped at BREL Doncaster, September 1986 [4]


  1. ^ Bickerdyke, Paul, ed. (October 2015). "Class 13 Tinsley shunters". Rail Express. No. 233. Horncastle: Mortons Media Publishing. p. 25. ISSN 1362-234X.
  2. ^ "Class 13 Number 13001". Diesel/Electric Locomotive Information. Rail UK. Retrieved 28 March 2017.
  3. ^ "Class 13 Number 13002". Diesel/Electric Locomotive Information. Rail UK. Retrieved 28 March 2017.
  4. ^ "Class 13 Number 13003". Diesel/Electric Locomotive Information. Rail UK. Retrieved 28 March 2017.
  • Strickland, David C. (1983). Locomotive Directory—every single one there has ever been. Camberley, Surrey: Diesel and Electric Group. pp. 53–55. ISBN 0-906375-10-X.

Further reading[edit]

  • McManus, Michael. Ultimate Allocations, British Railways Locomotives 1948 - 1968. Wirral. Michael McManus.
  • Pobgee, Ray (February 1983). "We're two of a kind...". Rail Enthusiast. EMAP National Publications. pp. 22–23. ISSN 0262-561X. OCLC 49957965.

External links[edit]