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Early Locomotives

Early Locomotives


Early train
/Railcar /Early railcar /1st ever mp loader filling wagon at Lullymore /Rouston locomotive LM98 /Removing track LM46

Early records show that the company once operated 340 diesel locomotives, with 5,300 specially developed wagons which ranged in size from 4 to 32 cubic metre capacity; a fleet of specially built service and maintenance wagons; and 30 rail cars for carrying staff and visitors around the various rail networks.

The Locomotives Handbook of the Industrial Railway Society shows that the company has operated 388 diesel locomotives - and all were given the standard "LM" serial number. The highest serial number reached then, LM 388, was on a Hunslet Locomotive purchased in 1986 for Littleton Bog in Co. Tipperary, but between 1994 and 1998 newly built Bord na Móna locos LM 389 to LM 411 were added to the list.

A loco was employed at Turraun works in 1924, by theTurf Development Board, to haul raw material and finished fuel over five miles of track to the factory, and to points of dispatch by canal and road.

From 1936 onward three locomotives operated at Lullymore Briquette Factory. Two were German Hatz locomotives, and the third, a 50 H.P. 4 Cylinder Italian Montania, worked successfully there until 1952. These locos had initially been purchased by the Peat Fuel Company and transferred to the Turf Development Board in 1939.

The earliest locomotive on Bord na Móna‘s extant list was a O-4-0 diesel Ruhrthaler (Serial No. 1082 - Bord na Móna Serial No. LM 11) with mechanical transmission which was manufactured by Ruhrthaler Maschinenfabrik Schwarz & Dyckerhoff of Mulheim in Germany in about 1936. This loco still exists in a much altered state at the Narrow Gauge Railway [Preservation] Centre in Gloddfa Ganol Slate Mine, Blaneau Ffestiniog, Gwynedd, Wales. The Ruhrthaler was followed by LM 12, a Whitcomb Class 5DM25A 4 wheel petrol/diesel locomotive, Serial Number 40331, manufactured in 1945 by the Whitcomb Locomotive Company of Rochell, Illinois, USA, which worked at Lyracrompane and Barna in Co. Kerry.

Between 1946 and 1957, between LM 13 and LM 175, practically all of Bord na Móna‘s locomotives were Ruston‘s. There was a notable exception in the three 0-4-01 well tank peat burning locomotives (LM 43, 44, & 45) which were built in 1949 by Andrew Barclay of Kilmarnock for use by Bord na Móna at Clonsast. Although earlier locomotives had burned peat, these are recorded as being the first specifically designed to do so. They weighed 101/4 tons in working order, and had 2ft driving wheels and Walschaerts valve gear with boiler pressure at 180psi. Two have been preserved, one (Serial No 2264 - LM 44) at Stradbally Steam Preservation Society in Co. Laois; and the other (Serial No 2265 - LM 45 - now called "Shane") at Shane‘s Castle Railway, Randalstown Road, in Antrim. The third turf-burning Barclay (Serial No 2263 - LM 43) was sold to the Talylln Railway Company in Gwynedd in Wales, where in 1991 it was stripped to add parts to another locomotive.


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