Sylvanau ... Trains 1

Here are some photos of the trains running on the layout. This first group of photos shows the locomotives with tender.


Prussian express train hauled by an S6 passing through station.

Many people who see this train comment that the wrong locomotive is pulling the train. Although the S6 (a 2'B, 4-4-0) was a bit underpowered, and was not used much after the end of Epoch I, it did indeed pull express trains along level track in Prussia. This particular set, manufactured by Fleischmann, models a train that ran from Hamburg to Berlin. The train is a bit of an anachronism on this layout since it probably would never have run on such a minor line.


Prussian P4 passenger locomotive.

When you think of the 2'B locomotive (4-4-0), the variation that normally comes to mind is the "American" style, so named because it was so common in North America. But there were also a few 2'B designs in the Prussian railways. The P4 (DRG class 36) was a small two-cylinder locomotive used for local passenger service, with a maximum speed of 90km/h. It was also used in the Mecklenburg and Oldenburg railways.

I went to the local train store expecting to find Roco items from a recent shipment. I was hoping to have a good look at the new Prussian T2 (Glaskasten), but it had already been sold. Instead, I was drawn to the P4 (Roco 63302). Randy, knowing I was an Era I fan, pulled out the matching Prussian pasenger coaches (Roco 45571-45574), and explained excitedly how Roco had lowered their prices significantly! Perhaps they were trying to atone for recent pricing excesses? I couldn't resist the prices, and left with the P4 and the four coaches.

First impressions of the P4 are positive. Out of the box, it's already a very nicely detailed model. Additional details come in the box and must be added, such as KPEV and number shields, cylinder poles, and tender tool rack. On my layout with a minimum curve radius of 760mm, the cylinder poles don't interfere with the leading wheels.

The motor is smooth and low speed performance is quite nice. The motor drives four wheels in the tender, all with traction tires. Through a cardan shaft, the four drivers of the locomotive are also powered.

The coupling mount at the rear is not an NEM socket. The locomotive comes with a Roco Universal coupler already installed, but the box also includes Roco Type II and NEM coupler heads. Fleischmann Profi coupler 6570 would probably fit the slot. There is no provision for a front coupler.

Prussian passenger train. (R63302, R45574, F5850, R45571, R45572, F5851, R45573)

The P4 and matching coaches were a welcome addition to my layout, and nicely fit the rural atmosphere of much of the layout. I was also able to put a couple of older Fleischmann wagons to good use. The Fleischmann 5850 and 5851 were two of the first H0 wagons I bought, and only now do they fit into a train.


P8 locomotive hauling a freight train.

The P8 (2'C, 4-6-0) was a very common steam locomotive. It was so well designed and built in such large numbers that many were still in service years after its replacements were taken out of service. A versatile locomotive, it was also occasionally used for fast freight service.

This is a Fleischmann model that was also offered in a passenger train set. Although I liked the three axle passenger coaches in that set, I felt I had enough passenger stock (for now), and so I bought just the locomotive alone to haul freight trains.


G8 locomotive at the coaling station.

The G8 (0-8-0) was one of the more common German steam locomotives. This model made by Trix is nice, but the flanges are somewhat more noticable than on other locomotives. This particular modeller will certainly welcome the introduction of more models made with finer wheel flanges. Although quite reliable, this locomotive also has the noisiest motor of the bunch.


G10 locomotive pulling a freight train.

Almost 3000 locomotives of class G10 (later BR 57) were built between 1910 and 1931, with more than 2500 sold to the German railways. G10's continued in service until 1968.

This Roco locomotive is a re-issue of an older model, but with a digital socket added. Operation is very smooth and relatively quiet, with motor in the tender. The model has only a coupler at the rear and unfortunately it's an NEM loop coupler without an NEM socket. It can be replaced, but until Roco makes their universal couplers available again, I may have some difficulty finding the proper coupler head. I suppose I could use a Märklin coupler in the meantime.

For some time, I wanted to add another freight locomotive to my roster. But over the past few years, most German manufacturers have tended to offer mainly passenger locomotives in Prussian colors. And so this model is a welcome addition to my layout.