India’s meanest tank locomotives

Inspired by the Popular Mechanics articles on badass planes and locomotives, here are the biggest and baddest of the tank locomotives which ran on the Indian Railways.

One place where you saw large tank engines was in shunting yards, especially where hump shunting was involved. Here is one of a pair of 2-10-2s which were working at the Bombay Port Trust lines up to at least 1996:

BPT tank loco 001-crop

(From “Industrial Locomotives…. ” by Simon Darvill, 2013)

The locos numbered 25 and 26 were built by Nasmyth, Wilson at Manchester in 1922.

Large tank locomotives were also found to be useful on steep mainline sections such as the Bhore Ghat and Thull Ghat sections now on the Central Railway (earlier GIPR), besides the Bolan pass line now in Pakistan.

Here is an 0-8-0 ST (saddle tank) which ran on the GIPR in the late 19th century:

W1 tank loco 001-crop

(“From Indian Locomotives Part 1….” by Hugh Hughes, 1990).

This one was built by Neilson (Glasgow) in 1885. After a stint on the ghat sections they were used for shunting in the Bombay area.

If you need to brush up on tank locomotives (not just Thomas!) see

and for hump shunting:

Tail piece: 0-10-0 tank locomotives have been used in Finland: