What is the 0-6-0 "Camelback" Goat Switcher Steam Locomotive with a Tender?
What a great question and I hope to answer that for you today. Let's break it down for you...
First of all, what does 0-6-0 mean?According to the Whyte Notation for the classification of steam locomotives, the 0-6-0 steam trains have six powered driving wheels and NO leading or trailing wheels (see the pictures below). These trains were considered a switcher type since its lack of forward or rear guiding axles meant it was less stable at higher speeds. But! -- all the weight of this steam locomotive was on powered wheels which gave it a great advantage in the train yards as you will see. Huge numbers of 0-6-0 switchers were manufactured for use in the United States, United Kingdom and some were used in continental Europe. These trains were popular and were worked hard.
What does the term, "Camelback" mean?A camelback locomotive has a driving cab placed in the middle, on top of the boiler. While this improved the driver's visibility looking forward, camelbacks were also fitted with wide fireboxes which restricted the driver's visibility to the rear (oh crap!).
As you can imagine, the camelbacks were NOT a very safe design for the crew. The engineer was perched above the whirling side-rods, vulnerable to flying metal if anything below should break (yikes!). And the fireman was alone and exposed to the elements at the rear of the locomotive.
So what is a Switcher?A switcher was a small steam locomotive that was not intended for moving railroad cars over a long distance but rather for assembling the railroad cars to get them ready for a road locomotive to take over. The switchers didn't have a lot of power but because of their high traction (remember all the weight of the steam train is on powered wheels). That made this type of train perfect for the job of assembling the rolling stock for the long haul steam locomotives.
And the last question, what is a Tender?Steam locomotive often hauled a tender which held the locomotive's fuel (wood, coal, or oil) and water.
HO Scale Mantua 0-6-0 Goat Switcher with Tender
Conclusion:The 0-6-0 Camelback Goat Switcher Steam Locomotives were popular and hard workers in the train yards in United States and Europe. Unless you are a billionaire, you probably can't get the real 0-6-0 Camelback Goat Switcher Steam Locomotive... BUT! You CAN get a replica model steam train at my eBay store. And when you get this HO Scale Mantua Classics train, you are investing in the history of railroads. Bottom line -- you will be completely satisfied with this superb locomotive and will enjoy spending hours and hours... operating your new steam train!
And lastly... Railroading is an extremely fun and interesting hobby that gives you hours and hours of delight and quality enjoyment! Happy model railroading!
And Remember, if you are not back in your garage operating your model steam trains, you just aren't living!
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