Steam-Powered Blog

New CSR White Paper

CSR released today a new White Paper that outlines the thermo-mechanical behaviors associated with steam locomotive fireboxes (including the firebox sheets, tube sheets, tubes and staybolts). This technical paper was originally written by modern steam engineer Livio Dante Porta in 1984 / 1985 during his work on the ACE 3000 modern steam project in the U.S. As such, the White Paper also includes information specific to tests undertaken with C&O steam locomotive 614 and issues it had with staybolt leakage.

This White Paper has been digitzed by CSR from the original hand drawn and hand written piece, with slight editing for clarity. Be sure to read it, and all of the other CSR papers, on the CSR White Paper Program page.

CSR Launches

CSR announced today the launching of a new website dedicated to the past, present and future of ATSF steam locomotive number 3463. This site,, features many never-before-published images of the 3460 class, extensive detail on the history of the locomotives, and a clear outline of plans to return the locomotive to steam.

CSR will still continue to use its main site,, for the majority of information, while this new site will serve as a semi-static "repository" of information. It is a one stop location for information on the 3463. Be sure to check it out and learn about the impressive class of locomotive.

RFIRT Rebuild Photos 3 - Cleaning and Machining

Hard work continues at Cromwell Marine on behalf of G&G Metalmatica on RFIRT 2-10-2 steam locomotive 119 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. CSR Director of Engineering Shaun McMahon is serving as a quality assurance engineer on the rebuild, and he took the following photographs March 17 as part of his inspections.

Below is an embedded version of the CSR Photostream on Flickr.



Watch HSB Steam Engines Battle to the Brocken

The Harzer Schmalspurbahnen (HSB) hauls more than one million passengers a year, and to do so it utilizes its equipment to the fullest potential. The following video shows unmodernized HSB 2-10-2T steam locomotives lugging trains up the 3.3% grade between Schierke and the Brocken in July 2009.

Harzer Schmalspurbahnen 2-10-2Ts Battle to the Brocken from CSR on Vimeo.

Steam Power - Rolling Along | August, 1945

Fortune ArticleOn this #throwbackthursday, read all about the battle between steam and diesel on U.S. railroads in the 1940's. The cover story of the August 1945 Fortune Magazine addresses experimental advances in steam technology that locomotive manufacturers were pursuing.

While there is some discussion of the ATSF 2900 class towards the end, this article addresses primarily the experiments the Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR) was undertaking in advancing steam. From the T1 to the S2, this article has detail and perspective from the era on advances the steam engineers were pursuing.

Download and read the entire piece by clicking on this link (4.37 MB) or the image above.

RFIRT Rebuild Photos 2 - Disassembly and Sand Blasting

Work continues on the heavy overhaul of the RFIRT locomotives 107 and 119 in Buenos Aires. A decision has been taken this week to complete No. 119 before starting work on 107. This is mainly due to available workshop space which is relatively limited taking into account the storage of locomotive 107 as well as stripping 119 into several component parts. However the two tenders are being worked in parallel. Sand blasting of 119's boiler is taking place this week as well as a full strip down of the rolling chassis and then a full sandblast prior to a thorough inspection. The boiler will be inspected once fully stripped and cleaned. Work has now started on the Sentinel S6 steam waggon and a full strip down is taking place at this point in time.

The following photographs were taken by CSR Director of Engineering, Shaun T. McMahon, on his visit to the rebuilding facility on Tuesday, February 24. Below is an embedded version of the CSR Photostream on Flickr.