Pichi Richi Railway Yx141 back in service

After a lengthy restoration Pichi Richi Railway’s 2-6-0 Yx141 underwent test runs in late August before re-entering service.

Yx141 was built by James Martin and Co, of Gawler (South Australia), in 1892, and was one of several ‘Y’ class 2-6-0s based upon Beyer Peacock designs used by South Australian Railways (SAR).

Yx141 and its test train, including diesel NT76, is seen at Woolshed Flat bridge on August 29 this year. STEVE McNICOL

It was rebuilt to a Yx design with a larger Belpaire boiler and higher boiler pressure in 1923.

It was withdrawn from SAR service in the early 1960s and then preserved in a park at Port Lincoln.

Yx141 was acquired by the Pichi Richi Railway Preservation Society in 1983, and although first steamed several years ago it was found to have a cracked cylinder, with two new ones having to be cast before the restoration could be completed.

The Co-Co class NT diesel loco NT76 was in the test train as dead weight and also for assistance, if needed. NT76 is the last survivor of 13 Sulzer 6LDA28C-engined diesels built by Tulloch Ltd in 1968 for the Commonwealth Railways 1,067mm-gauge Central Australia Line between Adelaide and Alice Springs. The line was built from 1878, but replaced by the newer standard gauge line to Alice Springs by 1980.

Part of the old route between Quorn and Port Augusta is today operated by the Pichi Richi Railway Preservation Society.

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