Ministry of Supply 2-10-0 Austerity Engine & Tender 1945 - DIGITAL EDITION


Unlike cars, as far as I know steam locomotives didn’t generally come complete with an ‘Owner’s Guide’ but, presumably as they were initially government property, the British Austerity 2-10-0s did.

Reprinted here, thanks to the kindness of John Payne, are 92 A4 pages of “Brief description with hints on maintenance and repair”. This sub-title is rather modest, as there is a huge amount of information here, split between a detail description of the design, and in particular its specification and a very specific description of the maintenance and repair schedule for the class, with 35 full page drawings of various parts of the locomotive, fittings on it and tools for repairs. Parts include the firebox and firebox stays, fittings include pumps, clacks, brake valves etc..

This class of locomotive was intended to work overseas after the war, helping in the reconstruction of Europe’s railways and was configured and equipped accordingly - for example with multiple brake systems, and this book was presumably intended to help RE/ROD operating personnel look after them in far flung corners of Europe.

Detailed maintenance schedules and instructions may have existed on British railways but I have never seen them; here you have a wealth of information on the subject, some mind boggling - the permitted amount of wear in crank and other pins before they were replaced, some bizarre - how to test lubricants and, in some cases, mix them, but all of it interesting, especially as this class contained features which were to be carried on to the British Railways Standard Classes.

The original of this book was 92 pages, the text being typewritten and the whole lot printed on typical government paper of the period. We have left the typewriting, but originally printed the whole thing properly; this has resulted in 4 extra pages, so we have included some more general Ministry of Supply/RE drawings of various items of locomotive equipment - including the hand-brush.