New South Wales 43 class locomotive

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New South Wales 43 class
4303 passes the wheat silos at Temora
in January 1966
Type and origin
Power type Diesel-electric
Builder A Goninan & Co
Build date 1956/57
Total produced 6
UIC class Co-Co
Gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)
Wheel diameter 40 in (1,016 mm)
Length Over headstocks:
53 ft 10 14 in (16.41 m),
Over coupler pulling faces:
56 ft 8 14 in (17.28 m)
Width 9 ft 7 in (2.92 m)
Height 13 ft 9 14 in (4.20 m)
Axle load 17 long tons 11 cwt (39,300 lb or 17.8 t)
Loco weight 105 long tons 10 cwt (236,300 lb or 107.2 t)
Fuel type Diesel
Fuel capacity 1,165 imp gal (5,300 l; 1,399 US gal)
Lubricant cap 167 imp gal (760 l; 201 US gal)
Coolant cap 208 imp gal (950 l; 250 US gal)
Sandbox cap 22 cu ft (0.62 m3)
Prime mover Alco 244
RPM range 350-1000
Engine type Four-stroke, V12 diesel
Aspiration Turbocharged
Generator General Electric 5GT 581
Traction motors General Electric 761, 6 of
Cylinders 12
Cylinder size 9 in × 10.5 in (229 mm × 267 mm)
Train brakes Dynamic
Performance figures
Maximum speed 71 mph (114 km/h)
Power output Gross:
1,750 hp (1,300 kW),
For traction:
1,600 hp (1,190 kW)
Tractive effort 42,900 lbf (190.83 kN)
at 11 mph (18 km/h)
Operators New South Wales Government Railways
Number in class 6
Numbers 4301-4306
First run 26 September 1956
Last run 2 October 1979
Preserved 4306
Disposition 1 preserved, 5 scrapped

The 43 class were a class of Australian diesel locomotives built by A Goninan & Co, Broadmeadow for the New South Wales Government Railways in 1956/57.


The class of six locomotives was built by A Goninan & Co, Broadmeadow, as sub-contractor to Australian Electrical Industries.[1][2]

These locomotives were unique in Australia in having Alco power units in GE Transportation Systems designed bodies, a legacy of the former Alco-GE partnership which was dissolved in 1953. Although their design originated in the United States, only two similar UM20 cab and two booster units were ever built in that country, for the Erie Railroad.[3]


The 43 class were initially used on the Main Western line from Sydney to Orange, prior to electrification of the line to Lithgow in June 1957, appearing regularly on the Central West Express. Subsequently, they were transferred to Broadmeadow Locomotive Depot operating from Gosford to the Queensland border via both the North Coast and Main North lines. They also saw service on the Main South line.[4]

The 43 class were not popular with the train crews, but they did pave the way for a long line of Alco powered locomotives. They did receive some improvements in the late 1950s with water cooling of the turbo-superchargers replacing the air-cooled units.[5]


In August 1974, 4301 was taken into Chullora Workshops for a regular overhaul, however a decision was made to use it as spares for the remaining units.[6]

The last was withdrawn in October 1979 with 4306 placed by the Public Transport Commission in the custody of the New South Wales Rail Transport Museum. It is now a designated NSW heritage item.[7][8] It was transferred to Thirlmere in March 1980.[9] In 1986, the Illawarra branch of the Rail Transport Museum commenced overhauling 4306 at Yallah.[10] The locomotive returned to traffic in June 1996 and has since been used extensively on charters in New South Wales as well as interstate to Brisbane and Melbourne.[11]


4301 - Scrapped

4302 - Scrapped

4303 - Scrapped

4304 - Scrapped

4305 - Scrapped

4306 - Preserved , Operational


  1. ^ A Century Plus of Locomotives Australian Railway Historical Society, NSW Division 1965
  2. ^ 43 Class
  3. ^ Oberg, Leon (1984). Locomotives of Australia. Reed Books. p. 229. ISBN 0-7301-0005-7. 
  4. ^ Clark, Peter (1973). An Australian Diesel Locomotive Pocketbook. Australian Railway Historical Society, New South Wales Division. ISBN 0-909650-02-0. 
  5. ^ Oberg, Leon (2007). Locomotives of Australia 1854-2007. Rosenberg Publishing. ISBN 978-1-877058-54-7. 
  6. ^ 43 Class Railpage
  7. ^ RailCorp S170 Heritage & Conservation Register RailCorp
  8. ^ Locomotive, Diesel 4306 NSW Government Environment & Heritage
  9. ^ Railway Digest December 1984 page 418
  10. ^ "The Museum Scene" Roundhouse April 1990 page 25
  11. ^ "Train Delays Take Shine Off Open Day" Railway Digest August 1996 page 8

Further reading[edit]

  • New South Wales Rail System Locomotives. Sydney: Archives Section, State Rail Authority of New South Wales. 1984. 

External links[edit]

Media related to New South Wales 43 class locomotives at Wikimedia Commons