Wednesday, November 11, 2009

CFR 40.004 at Sibiu Steam Locomotive Museum

CFR 40.004 is a special steam locomotive, designed to be able to climb sections of very steep track, with up to 70% declivity. It can do this with the help of two cog-wheels. In some sections a third line exists between the tracks, which is used to interact with the cog-wheels of the locomotive to help pull the weight. Such special cog railways existed in the former Austro-Hungarian Empire, in the former Czechoslovakia, etc. There was one in Romania too, between Subcetate and Boutari. It was built between 1908 and 1909 and it served for the transport of raw materials.

Only a few locomotive factories existed in Europe which produced special steam locomotives with cog-wheels. One of them was the Wiener Lokomotivfabriks, AG in Floridsdorf, which delivered 7 cog locomotives to the Subcetate-Boutari line in 1908. One of them is the CFR 40.004 locomotive, which has two 4-cylinder engines, one for the normal, adhesive wheels and one for the cog-wheels. These locomotives had been working on the Subcetate-Boutari line until 1978 when the line was closed. They always rode in the front of the train, so they needed to be turned around at the ends of the line. On the Subcetate-Boutari line two manual turntables existed.
They never were fast locomotives. the maximum speed on normal sections was 40 km/h and 12 km/h on cog sections. They were able to generate a power of around 441-514 kW. These steam locomotives were very advanced from technological point of view and were also very reliable. CFR 40.004 is also a film star. It appeared in the movie "Petrolul, aurul si ardelenii".

ID: CFR 40.004
Wheel arrangement: 2-8-2cog
Built: 1908
Builder: Wiener Lokomotivfabriks AG (Floridsdorf)
Top speed: 40 km/h on normal sections, 12 km/h on cog sections
Gauge: Standard (1435 mm)
Location: Sibiu, Romania (steam locomotive museum)

The locomotive, of course, is not being used anymore. It is on display in the Sibiu steam locomotive museum, close to the entrance, in a fairly acceptable state. Unfortunately it too is stuck behind bushes, hard to even photograph.


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