LMS Route: Birmingham New Street to Tamworth
LMS Route: Nuneaton to Birmingham New Street
Bromford Bridge Station: mrbb1679
An unidentified former Franco-Crosti boilered 8F 2-10-0
locomotive passes over the River Tame with a Class F express freight service.
The smoke being emitted from the chimney confirms that the locomotive has been
reverted to a more traditional boiler format. The Franco-Crosti boiler took the
form of a single cylindrical water drum running along the underside of the main
boiler barrel; the standard chimney at the front was only used during
lighting-up, in normal working the gases went through firetubes inside the
preheater drum that led to a second smokebox situated beneath the boiler from
which there emerged a chimney on the right-hand side (fireman's), just forward
of the firebox.
In the event, the experiment did not deliver the hoped-for
benefits, and efficiency was not increased sufficiently to justify the cost and
complexity. Moreover, conditions were unpleasant on the footplate in a
cross-wind, this in spite the later provision of a small deflector plate
forward of the chimney. These problems led to the subsequent sealing off of the
preheater drum, over the period 1959-1961, and the locomotives were then worked
conventionally. As a result of this, there was a reduced ability to generate
steam, and so their power classification was reduced from 9F to 8F.