Death Valley 2-8-0 "Consolidation" Locomotives in the USA

Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class 1 (Locobase 14252)

Data from Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification for Engines as digitized by the DeGolyer Library of Southern Methodist University, Vol 51, p. 356, 358. See also [] and the Brill Car restoration site at . Works numbers were 41473 in June 1914 and 42864 in February 1916.

The British-owned DVRR was formed in 1914 to exploit borax deposits near Ryan, Calif (named for the leading speculator). It connected Ryan with the Tonopah & Tidewater at Death Valley Junction, Nev about 20 miles distant. These relatively powerful narrow-gauge, oil-burning Consolidations pulled trainloads of water into the valley in the morning and borax out to Death Valley Junction in the evening. The specs called for them to negotiate 20-degree curves and 1 1/2% grrades on 56 lb/yard (28 kg/metre) rails.

As the borax played out, the DVRR converted to a tourist road in 1925, bringing visitors to the converted miners' dormitories that now made up the Furnace Creek Inn. The passengers would ride in a Brill car, a self-propelled 38-passenger gasoline-powered rail vehicle. By 1929, US Borax decided to close down all operations. The last two trains to run were pulled by the two 2-8-0s on 21 February 1930.

The pair's new owner was United States Potash Company of Loving, NM. Both operated for that company until their retirements in January 1956. 1 wound up on display at Municipal Beach Park in Carlsbad, NM while 2 was eventually put on display at the Furnace Creek Ranch Resort at Death Valley Junction.

Principal Dimensions by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media
Locobase ID14252
RailroadDeath Valley
Number in Class2
Road Numbers1-2
Number Built2
Valve GearWalschaert
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft / m)13.50 / 4.11
Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)20.83 / 6.35
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheelbase 0.65
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)49.62 / 15.12
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)
Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg)98,000 / 44,452
Engine Weight (lbs / kg)110,000 / 49,895
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)80,000 / 36,287
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)190,000 / 86,182
Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)4000 / 15.15
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / Liters/MT)1800 / 6813
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)41 / 20.50
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in / mm)42 / 1067
Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)170 / 11.70
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)18" x 20" / 457x508
Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)22,294 / 10112.40
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 4.40
Heating Ability
Tubes (number - dia) (in / mm)192 - 2" / 51
Flues (number - dia) (in / mm)
Flue/Tube length (ft / m)12.67 / 3.86
Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)126 / 11.71
Grate Area (sq ft / m2)17.20 / 1.60
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1391 / 129.28
Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1391 / 129.28
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume236.16
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation2924
Same as above plus superheater percentage2924
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area21,420
Power L14083
Power MT367.41

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Wes Barris