Fort Worth & Denver City 2-8-2 "Mikado" Locomotives in the USA

The Fort Worth and Denver Railway, nicknamed "the Denver Road", operated in the northern part of Texas for 101 years from 1881 to 1982. The Fort Worth and Denver City Railway Company (FW&DC) was chartered by the Texas legislature on May 26, 1873. The company would later change its name to the Fort Worth and Denver Railway Company (FW&D) on August 7, 1951.

The main line ran from Fort Worth, through Wichita Falls, Childress, Amarillo, and Dalhart, to Texline, where it connected with the rails of its parent company Colorado and Southern Railway.

The FW&DC took delivery of its first "Mikado" type locomotives in 1915 with the delivery of ten 2-8-2s built by the Baldwin Locomotive Works. These locomotives were designated as Class E-4A1 and assigned road numbers 401 through 410. They had 64" diameter drivers, 27" x 30" cylinders, a 170 psi boiler pressure, exerted 49,400 pounds of tractive effort and each weighed 273,125 pounds. The firebox was 200 square feet, the evaporative heating surface was 3,488 and with the superheater the combined heating surface was 4,322 square feet.

In 1919, the USRA allocated five "Mikado-Heavy" locomotives to the FW&DC. The locomotives were built by Baldwin and they were designated as Class E-4A2 and given road numbers 451 through 455. They had 63" diameter drivers, 27" x 30" cylinders, a 190 psi boiler pressure, exerted 59,800 pounds of tractive effort and each weighed 325,000 pounds. The firebox was 279 square feet, the evaporative heating surface was 4,257 and with the superheater the combined heating surface was 5,250 square feet.

In 1920, Baldwin delivered five heavy "Mikados" which were designated as Class E-4A-3 and they were assigned road numbers 456 through 460. These locomotives 64" diameter drivers, 28" x 32" cylinders, a 180 psi boiler pressure, they exerted 59,995 pounds of tractive effort and each weighed 315,000 pounds. The firebox was 346 square feet, the evaporative heating surface was 4,426 square feet and with the superheater the combined heating surface was 5,457 square feet.

Another five Baldwin-built "Mikados" were added to the roster in 1922. They were designated as Class E-4A4 and given road numbers 461 through 465. These locomotives were very close copies of the Class E-4A-3 locomotives delivered in 1920. They did weigh 5,075 pounds more and with a higher boiler pressure of 200 psi they exerted 66,640 pounds of tractive effort.

There is a locomotive on display at the National Ranching Heritage Center in Lubbock, TX. The locomotive is a representative of FW&D number 401 but it is actually Colorado & Southern number 4994. The Burlington Railroad Lines, which owned the Fort Worth and Denver, provided the locomotive. It was brought out of storage and restored with its markings changed to represent the locomotive as one used in West Texas, the Fort Worth and Denver 401.

Number 410 was bought by the T&P in 1958 to work in flood protection standby service and was renumbered T&P 400. It suffered a mechanical breakdown, which was deemed too costly to repair and was retired and put on display in the city park in Marshall, Texas in 1963. It has since be moved to an indoor location at a depot in Marshall, TX


Roster by Richard Duley

ClassQty.Road NumbersYear BuiltBuilderNotes
E-4A110401-4101915Baldwin1
E-4A2 5451-4551919Baldwin2
E-4A3 5 456-4601920Baldwin3
E-4A4 5461-4651922Baldwin4
Notes:
  1. Number 410 was sold to the T&P in 1958 and is on display as T&P 400 in Marshall, TX. All the others were scrapped between 1955 and 1960. There is representative of number 401 on display in Lubbock, TX, but the actual number 401 was scrapped.
  2. USRA allocated "Mikado-Heavy" locomotives. Number 453 wrecked in 1948. Numbers 451, 452, 454 & 455 scrapped between 1955 and 1960
  3. Numbers 456-460 scrapped between 1956 and 1960
  4. Numbers 461-465 scrapped in 1955-1956.

Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class E-4-A-1 (Locobase 1341)

Data from FW&DC 8-1942 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive Rail Data Exchange. See also DeGolyer, Volume 51, pp. 77+. Baldwin works numbers were 42097-42101, 42121-42125 in June 1915.

Identical to first CB&Q mikes. Drury (1993) comments that this oil-burning class led the way for the Fort Worth & Denver City, which eventually converted all of its engines to oil firing. This class operated until 1955-1960.


Class E-4-A-2 (Locobase 9467)

Data from FW&DC 8 - 1942 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive Rail Data Exchange. Works numbers from 51650-51652, 51701 in April 1919; 51725 in May 1919.

Typical USRA Heavy Mike with the slight variation of oil-firing, to which the class was converted in March-May 1921. Firebox heating surface includes 51 sq ft (4.75 sq m) of combustion chamber.

453 was wrecked in August 1948.


Class E-4-A-3/E-4-A-4 (Locobase 9468)

Data from FW&DC 8 - 1942 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive Rail Data Exchange. See also DeGolyer, Vol 67, pp. 116+. Works numbers were 53165 in April 1920; 53230-53232, 53250 (A-3) in May; and 55516, 55562-55564, 55617 (A-4) in July 1922.

A year after the FW & DC took delivery of five USRA Heavy Mikados (Locobase 9467), the railroad went back to Baldwin in 1920 for a slightly larger quintet and a repeat of the class in 1922. In addition to a larger firebox with more (up to 69 sq ft/6.4 sq m) combustion chamber area, the superheater grew a little, the cylinders were bored out by an inch, and the drivers stood an inch taller. Piston valves measured 14" (356 mm) in diameter.

Three of the five A-4s from 1922 were identical except for a small increase in adhesion weight. Delivered with boilers pressed to 180 psi (12.4 bar) and a nearly perfect factor of adhesion of 3.99, the class later operated at 200 psi as shown in the specs. That led to weight increases both on the drivers and overall.

The last two of the class were identical except for the provision of feedwater heaters. As this was the time that US railroads began to show serious interest in the fuel savings to be derived from preheating boiler water, the FW&DC bought 464 with a Worthington feedwater heater and 465 with an Elesco. The 464 weighed 247,235 lb (112,144 kg) on the drivers while the 465's adhesion weight reached 248,685 lb (129,131 kg). These higher weights generated higher F/As (3.71 in 464 and 3.73 in 465). Engine weight was 190 lb (86.2 kg) higher in 464 than 465, reaching 334,635 lb (151,788 kg).

The whole class served to the end of steam and was scrapped in the late 1950s.

Specifications by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media
ClassE-4-A-1E-4-A-2E-4-A-3/E-4-A-4
Locobase ID1341 9467 9468
RailroadFort Worth & Denver CityFort Worth & Denver CityFort Worth & Denver City
CountryUSAUSAUSA
Whyte2-8-22-8-22-8-2
Number in Class1053
Road Numbers401-410451-455456-460, 461-465
GaugeStdStdStd
Number Built1053
BuilderBaldwinBaldwinBaldwin
Year191519191920
Valve GearWalschaertWalschaertWalschaert
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft / m)16.75 / 5.1116.75 / 5.1116.75 / 5.11
Engine Wheelbase (ft / m)33.79 / 10.3036.08 / 1135.75 / 10.90
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheebase 0.50 0.46 0.47
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft / m)65.96 / 20.1071.62 / 21.8369.75 / 21.26
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs / kg)
Weight on Drivers (lbs / kg)213,425 / 96,808238,575 / 108,216243,485 / 108,896
Engine Weight (lbs / kg)273,125 / 123,888319,500 / 144,923327,755 / 145,184
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs / kg)174,000 / 78,925170,000 / 77,111196,600 / 82,781
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs / kg)447,125 / 202,813489,500 / 222,034524,355 / 227,965
Tender Water Capacity (gals / ML)8200 / 31.0610,000 / 37.8810,100 / 38.26
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons / ML/MT)4050 / 15.304300 / 16.304300 / 16.30
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd / kg/m)89 / 44.5099 / 49.50101 / 50.50
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in / mm)64 / 162663 / 160064 / 1626
Boiler Pressure (psi / kPa)200 / 13.80200 / 13.80200 / 13.80
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in / mm)27" x 30" / 686x76227" x 32" / 686x81328" x 32" / 711x813
Tractive Effort (lbs / kg)58,092 / 26350.1262,949 / 28553.2266,640 / 30227.43
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 3.67 3.79 3.65
Heating Ability
Firebox Area (sq ft / m2)200 / 18.58279 / 25.93385.40 / 35.80
Grate Area (sq ft / m2)54.20 / 5.0470.30 / 6.5378 / 7.25
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)3703 / 344.024257 / 395.634465 / 414.81
Superheating Surface (sq ft / m2)834 / 77.48993 / 92.291031 / 95.78
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft / m2)4537 / 421.505250 / 487.925496 / 510.59
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume186.26200.75195.78
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation10,84014,06015,600
Same as above plus superheater percentage12,79116,73118,564
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area47,20066,40291,725
Power L113,10114,44714,659
Power MT541.32534.01530.92

Photos