The ‘V499 Project‘ as it is known was launched in July 2011. The aim is to build a compound cylinder V class locomotive. 16 of the class were built between 1900-1902 and were the largest locomotives ever built by the Victorian Railways at the time. The class were very powerful and highly successful and traveled all over Victoria.
As technology improved and more modern designs of locomotive were introduced the V class started to be withdrawn in 1924. By January 1930 all 16 members had been scrapped. Sadly this means that an example of this much-loved class was never preserved. However, that is changing.
The Victorian Steam Locomotive Company was formed with the aim to build, from scratch, a Victorian Railways V Class. Numbered V499, after the class leader, it will fill a gap in railway preservation in Victoria and be used to operate on several of the tourist railways, and possibly the mainline railways too, across the state.
Over the past 18 months we have been restoring the tender frame and wheel sets for the tender. For those who are not familiar with railway terminology, a ‘tender’ is the part where the coal is carried (see photo above) and is found directly behind the locomotive cab.
We have been researching and making project drawings for many years and it is finally time to start to build the first component - the locomotive cab.
The biggest challenge that we have faced has been drawing the cab from the limited V Class drawings that are in our possession. 99% of the V Class drawings no longer exist as they were destroyed by the railways in the mid-1950s. However through constant research and consultation with other preserved railway operators and engineers we have finally designed the cab of V499 to it’s exact proportions.
About Project Creator:
Victorian Steam Locomotive Co.
The Victorian Steam Locomotive Company Pty/Ltd was set up with the aim of building and operating an extinct class of locomotive of the Victorian Railways system - the Vauclain Compound V Class, 2-8-0.
Link to the Project: