A Class - A62
After World War II, the Victorian Railways set to modernise the aging steam fleet due to poor maintenance and overuse during the wartime period. In moving towards Diesel-electric traction, the VR looked to the United States for design and builders, though the locomotives needed to be built in Australia to avoid foreign exchange restrictions. The first Victorian mainline diesel locomotives took their design from the American F-Units built by General Motors but differed in there double-ended bulldog nose 26 B-class locomotives were ordered from Clyde Engineering, NSW and the first delivered on the 14th of July 1952.
Artists impression of the B Class. Public Record Office Victoria
B 62, from which A 62 was rebuilt, entered service on the 8th of September 1952. Due to their efficiency and lower maintenance costs, the B class were used consistently more than steam locomotives, running on average 130,000 miles a year while mainline steam locomotives averaged 35,000 to 60,000 miles a year. It was due to this usage that B 62 was the first diesel locomotive in Australia to complete over 1 million miles and carried a plate to commemorate this milestone.
In the 1980s, as a part of the 'New Deal' to modernise rail in Victoria, all 26 B class locomotives were to be rebuilt as the new A class, but this was stopped after the completion of 11 and instead more N class locomotives were ordered. The rebuild saw horsepower increase from 1500h.p to 2250h.p. with a turbocharged 12-cylinder 645 engine.
A 62 entered service on the 28th of July 1984, being dedicated in honor of all the employees of the Victorian Railways and carries a commemorative plate on each side which also celebrates the 150th anniversary of 'Victoria'. A 62 served in the V/Line passenger fleet until the 1st of August 2015 when it was withdrawn and stored. In 2020, A62 was allocated to Seven-O-Seven Operations Inc. for re-activation and use as a heritage locomotive.
Since allocation, countless tasks have been undertaken in order to return A 62 to service. A62 ran it's first tour in July, 2023 running on the North-East Line with A66.
A Class Technical Data
Two triple axel bogies, Co-Co
Last Updated: 12 September 2023