Cincinnati & Westwood / Crossett Western 2-8-2 "Mikado" Locomotives in the USA

The California Western Railroad was originally called the Fort Bragg Railroad and was built as a narrow gauge logging railroad in 1985. It ran from Fort Bragg CA, 40 miles east to Willits, CA. The line began as a vehicle for moving redwood logs to Mendocino Coast sawmills from the rugged backcountry. Steam passenger service was started in 1904, extended to the town of Willits in 1911, but was discontinued in 1925. It was renamed the California Western Railroad & Navigation Company in 1905 and in 1947 the name was shortened to the California Western Railroad. The railroad was initially operated as a division of the Fort Bragg mill.

CW Map In the mid 1960s, the Kyle Railways began managing the railroad, and purchased it in 1987. In Augus1996, a group comprised entirely of local Mendocino Coast investors purchased California Western.

The California Western acquired a second-hand "Mikado" type locomotives in 1964 from the Medford Corp. It was restored in 2003 and has been operational since.

Today the California Western is run as a tourist railroad and 2-8-2, number 45 is still operational and used on many weekend excursions.

Roster by Richard Duley

Qty.Road NumbersFrom Other RRYear AcquiredYear BuiltBuilderNotes
145Medford Corp19641924Baldwin1
144Medford Corp19641930Baldwin2
  1. Number 45 is operational and was previously owned by the Medford Corp. CAW bought it from the Medford Corp in 1964. The Medford Corp. bought it from Lamm Lumber Company. Number 45 was restored in 2003 and has been operational since.
  2. Purchased from Lamm Lumber Company in 1944. Number 44 scrapped in 1952.

Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class 10 (Locobase 14273)

Data from . Works numbers were 67652 in 1929 and 68057 in 1930.

This logging engine's big saddle tank had a horsecollar cross section, but stood very tall on the boiler, which gave it a slab-sided look. Like many logging engines, the 110 served several masters. First was Crossett Western, then based in Wauna, Ore. In 1943, the 10 went to Hammond Lbr Co of Samoa, CA as their #16. After Hammond was bought out by Georgia-Pacific Corp in 1953, the engine worked into the 1960s.

After its retirement, the 16 was bought by Harold Morgan of the Fortuna Kiwanis Club Fortuna, CA, which put it on display in a local park beginning in November 1966. Eventually, the 16 wound up with the Chelatchie Prairie Railroad (BYCX) where it was renumbered for the Crossett Western.

See the Mount Rainer Scenic Railway's description of the very similar path taken by the 11 at . Briefly, the 11 was sold to Hammond Lumber, which renumberd it 17. It last worked for a logger in 1945, when a fire at Hammond left it stranded and idle. Local lumberman Gus Peterson bought the engine in 1964, heroically disassembled it and trucked it out of its "desert isle", reconditioned the engine, and put back in service on his tourist road, the Klamath & Hoppow Valley.

After gas prices and inflation doomed the K&HV, the next angel didn't appear until 1980. He was Tom Murray, Jr., who took the 17 apart a second time and trucked it Tacoma. The Mount Rainier Scenic Railway accepted the engine but couldn't see to its restoration for 14 years. Once begun, however, the project moved swiftly and the engine was back in tourist service in 1995.

Taken out of service in 2010 to meet FRA regulations, the 17 soon underwent a long process of recertifying the engine for operation. A portion of a blog entry from 11 April 2011-- a flavor of some of the repairs such a project entails: "The bottom 1/3 of both side sheets had to go, as well as the bottom 8" of the door sheet at the back of the firebox. The throat sheet, at the front of the firebox, was ok, but we knew that we were going to have to replace all of the flexible staybolts in this area due to corrosion, so we decided to replace the inside throat sheet as well. We also decided to remove most of the riveted seam above the firebox door opening as it was riddled with past repairs that did not meet our standard of quality."

Class 3 (Locobase 13919)

Data from Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification for Engines as digitized by the DeGolyer Library of Southern Methodist University, Volume 41, p. 142. Works number was 37531 in February 1912.

The C & W was an interurban line that connected Cincinnati with a nearby suburb. As early as 1905, however, it was clear that the road's alignment simply couldn't compete with other passenger service. However, the route was useful for conveying coal and other freight and the 3 was purchased to provide additional motive power. See Locobase 11986 for more details about the railway.

The line closed in 1924 and further details about the 3's career are not available.

Specifications by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media
Locobase ID14,273 13,919
RailroadCrossett WesternCincinnati & Westwood
Number in Class21
Road Numbers10-113
Number Built21
Valve GearWalschaertWalschaert
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft / m)13.75 / 4.19
Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)28.83 / 8.79
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheebase 0.48
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)28.83 / 8.79
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)
Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg) / 62,777144,000 / 65,317
Engine Weight (lbs / kg)170,000 / 81,193186,000 / 84,368
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)170,000186,000
Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)2000 / 7.582500 / 9.47
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / ML/MT)1000 / 3.80
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)60 / 30
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in / mm)44 / 111851 / 1295
Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)190 / 13.10180 / 12.40
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)18" x 24" / 457x61019" x 26" / 483x660
Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)28,541 / 12946.0028,158 / 12772.27
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 5.11
Heating Ability
Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)135 / 12.54
Grate Area (sq ft / m2)25.10 / 2.3326.80 / 2.49
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1785 / 165.83
Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)1785 / 165.83
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume209.21
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation47694824
Same as above plus superheater percentage47694824
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area24,300
Power L14411
Power MT270.13