Archive for the ‘Ol49’ Category

Locos on the move

Monday, 16 February 2015

1255 - Lorry

Ol49-61 after arriving at Dzierzoniow. Photo: John Savery

Ol49-61 now has a new home.  After many years languishing in Elk, the loco has now moved south, albeit on the back of a low loader.

Its new home from 8 February is Dzierzoniow, in Dolny Śląsk, at the former locomotive depot.  The former depot is to become an outpost of Muzeum Techniki i Przemysłu, which is based in Jaworzyna Śląsk.

Sosnowiec

Ol49-61 being readied for unloading. Photo: John Savery

The Ol49 joins TKt48-72, which was formerly at Jarocin.  Both locomotives were purchased at the PKP Nieruchomosci tender in 2014, along with a number of other vehicles, including Ol49-102 and Ol49-9.

The state of the loco’s meant a road move was preferable.  Given that the loading gauge on Poland’s roads is less than the rail loading gauge, the highest parts had to be removed for the trip, and were carried on the bed of the low loader.

1258 - Chimney and smoke deflectors

Items that put the load out of gauge for the Polish road system were taken off prior to the move. Photo: John Savery

Ol49-9 has also made the move in the past few days, with Ol49-102 expected to follow shortly.

Great Continental Railway Journeys – Poland

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Portillo cab view

Michael Portillo rides the cab of Ol49-59.
Still courtesy BBC TV.

The BBC series “Great Continental Railway Journeys” is currently airing on UK television.  The latest series (3) devoted an episode to Poland.

Filmed in the spring of this year, the Michael Portillo and his Bradshaw guide start their journey in the restored heart of Warsaw, before travelling to Lodz, once a cotton capital to rival Manchester.

His Poznan stop includes the obligatory visit to the goats in the Rynek (Market Square), and the Kaiser’s Castle (or Palace) a short walk from the railway station.  The footage of the station is of the new concrete and glass structure (also known as “Poznan City Center” shopping centre), rather than the older building, or even the Dworzec Letni.

Portillo finds time to visit Wolsztyn, referring to it being the place where scheduled from where steam services still run.  His visit, on April 7, fell a few days after the suspension of the service, which as readers will know, has still not recommenced. His footplate ride out to Nowa Wies involved a special train, as there were no scheduled services.  Viewers can draw their own conclusions about his firing (watch the gloves and style).

The onward journey and visit to Wroclaw involved a visit around the Bombardier railway works, formerly known as Linke-Hoffman (before the war) and Pafawag (after the war), before travelling out of Wroclaw via the restored Wroclaw Głowny station.

The shots of Krakow are the familiar Rynek and Mariacki church, and a trip around the Stalinist-era Nowa Huta, grafted onto the side of the old town by the communist regime.

The full programme is available to UK residents for another 3 weeks on the BBC iPlayer here. Sadly viewers in Poland without a proxy server are blocked.

Lorry collision stops steam

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Steam services from Wolsztyn have been suspended following a collision between a lorry and Ol49-69. The collision, which took place on 11 September, caused some damage to the locomotive, including bent motion.  The lorry suffered serious damage, with most of the cab destroyed.  The lorry driver was lucky to escape with his life, with parts of the cab attaching themselves firmly to the locomotive.

Damage to Ol49-69 following the collision on 11 September

Ol49-69with the remains of the lorry’s door  firmly attached to the loco’s cab. Photo James Shuttleworth.

Whilst the loco was out of traffic for a couple of days whilst repairs were effected at Wolsztyn, it has since returned to service.

The reason for the disruption to the service this time, was not due to the unavailability of a loco or crew, but down to the the cold snap that seems to have caught everyone unawares. The only suitable steam-heated coaches which Koleje Wielkopolskie  had available were involved in the collision. These still require repair, with their steps being ripped off in the force of the collision. (The Poznan-Wolsztyn services are run by Koleje Wielkopolskie, with the locos and their crews being provided by PKP Cargo, and the coaches leased from Przewozy Regionalne!)

With temperatures dropping as low as 3C at night at present, and with no other steam heated coaches available, PKP has taken the step of substituting a diesel railcar until suitable coaches are in service.  It is understood that steam services will return as from today’s (Thursday 27 September) afternoon working.

Stop press

We understand from a senior railway source, who wishes to remain anonymous, that yesterday PKP Cargo signed an agreement for the purchase of 10 passenger coaches, suitable for steam haulage, from Czech Railways at a very good price. The second class coaches are destined for the Poznan-Wolsztyn service; the first class coaches are expected to see duty on various steam specials.

Ol49-80 – Conservator to ‘list’ loco.

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Ol49-80 at Elk. Photo Roman Miotke.

Robert Dylewski reports that, following the appeals of numerous railway enthusiasts, officials in the Historic Monuments Office in Olsztyn have started the process of listing Ol49-80 as a historic monument. (See: BTWT, 24 July 2012 – Ol49-80 – will be cut up in 7 days…) With the listing process started it would now be illegal for the locomotive to be cut up by its scrapyard owners.)

While the future of Ol49-80 is still far from secure, an important victory has been achieved. Congratulations are due to Robert who initiated a massive campaign to save the loco and also to Piotr Lewandowski of Fundacja Thesaurus in Poznan who provided legal support.

Robert is acquiring quite a reputation in Polish railway enthusiast circles for his campaigns to rescue steam locos on ‘death row’ it was he who initiated the successful campaign to save Ty2-5860 after DB Schenker had sold it to a scrapyard! (See BTWT, 6 September 2011 – All’s well that ends well.)

PKP Cargo plans for Wolsztyn locos

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Pociag do Wielkopolski 23.7.2012 – rail enthusiast produced Wielkoplska province TV programme.

According to Andrzej Jablonski, a Director of the Wielkopolska Division of PKP Cargo, the company wants to maintain 4 working steam locomotives to maintain a reliable Wolsztyn-Poznan service and cope with  steam specials.

Major overhauls will be moved from Leszno to Chabowka where there is already a team of steam fitters based at the ‘skansen’. Jablonski wants to keep two of the Wolsztyn Ol49s in service and also Pt47-67. He also has his eye on Ol49-100 in Chabowka, which – although out of service since 2006 – is reported to have a good firebox.

Jablonski also has a ‘wish list’ of locos that he would like to see in service which includes Warsaw Railway Museum-owned Pm36-2 Piekna Helena and 4-6-0 Ok1-359, but with the Pm36’s ticket due to expire (the loco will need a new firebox) and the Ok1 being not powerful enough for the Poznan turns, it is likely that, for the time being at least, his ‘wish list’ will remain just that.

With a hat tip to Podroznik for the story.

Ol49-80 – will be cut up in 7 days…

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

…unless ‘White Knight’ appears with 180,000 zloty

Ol49-80 at Elk. Photo Roman Miotke.

The OL49 offered for sale by tender in May (see BTWT, 16 May) has been bought by a scrap merchant. He is giving railway enthusiasts 7 days to raise 180,000 zloty to buy the locomotive, before he cuts up the engine for scrap.

Such a price is well beyond the reach of Polish railway heritage societies, leaving the loco’s fate dependent on the miraculous appearance of a ‘White Knight’.

The loco was built for PKP at the Feliks Dzierzynski locomotive factory in Chrzanow in 1953. Its tragic progress from a prize exhibit at the erstwhile ‘skansen’ at Elk to a ‘Barry wreck’ is illustrated on “Tomi” Czarnecki’s website Wciaz pod Para.

The photographs on OL49-80s page on Czarnecki’s website aptly illustrate the ignorance and stupidity of all those officials responsible for the demise of the Elk Skansen. Sadly, unless official policy changes with respect to PKP’s railway heritage rolling stock inventory many other Polish steam engines are likely to follow suit.

A hat tip to Marek Ciesielski for the story.

More:

Ol49-69 turned at Leszno

Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Progress! Ol49-69 at Leszno. Video by Eisenfisch100.

This short, but informative, video by shows further progress on the chassis of Ol49-69 at Leszno. The coupling rod journals have been turned, the wheels and painted and the chassis turned on the turntable.

The final clips of the video remind me of the scene in Oh Mr Porter where Porter, Harbottle and Albert discuss a series of shunting moves while a rake of trucks they have inadvertently set into motion hurtles to destruction!

A hat tip to Alex Everts for sending us the link to the YouTube video.

More:

Your own steam loco?

Friday, 14 October 2011


Ol49-111 2-6-0 Gauge 1 live steam. Video by Gauge One Video.

Anyone fancy their own steam locomotive? No joke, we are being serious. An Aster “Kreigslok” would set you back £3,850 in kit form, or £4,500 completely made up. A Prussian P8 kit is good value at £3,000, or you can buy the locomotive assembled for £4,000.

Alternatively we can offer 4 shares in a Tkp 0-8-0T at £2,500. This is a full-size locomotive, not a model. It is substantially complete, with a good boiler and motion. It needs the usual stripping down. cleaning and painting, and boiler and air cylinder certification. There is a verbal agreement in place for the loco to operate hauling freight trains on a local authority-owned branch line.

The owner of the locomotive currently resides in England, but hopes to relocate to Poland in due course. He would like to recruit a consortium of like-minded folk to work with him to restore the locomotive to working order.

The original Ol49-111 kit at Leszno. Photo BTWT.