The end

No, don’t worry, the FCPyF isn’t going to close! The end refers to one of its locos. With the run down of logging operations in Sierra Oculta due to ecological protests about deforestation (and the fact that the business was no longer as profitable as it used to be) several of the railway’s smaller locomotives were surplus to requirements.

Climax #11 was one such loco. It has been used recently on a light freight working, delivering powder kegs to the mine at Rio Paleta, but this turned out to be the loco’s last job. A few days later it failed a boiler test…

OK, its boiler was found to be leaking…


Anyway, the result was the same and #11 was immediately withdrawn from service. The boiler, cylinders, gears and bogies were removed for scrap then the loco department asked around for suitable sites to dump what was left. The Maintenance of Way department offered to take the remains of the loco away and loaded the bodywork onto a flat car before anybody in the loco department realised that it could be broken up for firewood.

The reason for the MoW’s haste soon became apparent. Instead of using it for firewood they patched up the holes left where the boiler had been removed. Their original intention was to convert the loco into a caboose/shoving platform for use on maintenance trains but the frame was badly weakened when the cylinders and gears were removed so the body was loaded back onto the flat car again and transported to Cumbre, where it has found a new lease of life as a shelter for the track gangs.

That’s the story, what actually happened though is that the Underground Ernie EMU mechanism intended for use with the new boxcab diesel (see Ugly Ducklings) has a piece of the drive train missing so the similar mechanism that was under #11 will be used instead.


About Bob Hughes

Ex railwayman, life long railway modeller, lover of real ale and spicy food.
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