Steam locomotive [Ab832]

Maker and role
The North British Locomotive Company Limited, Manufacturer
Production date
See full details

Object detail

Accession number
Production period
North British Ab 832 4-6-2 Pacific tender steam locomotive.

Specifications (1964):

Wheel arrangement: 4-6-2
Weight of engine: 53.4 tons
Weight of tender: 33.4 tons
Cylinder diameter: 17"
Cylinder stroke: 26"
Diameter of coupled wheels: 54"
Working pressure: 180 psi
Brief History
Introduced in 1915 to replace the Beattie A class compounds on the heaviest duties, the Ab was designed to the requirements of H. H. Jackson by the Chief Draughtsman, S. H. Jenkinson. The Ab Class engines handled all principal express services and, until the advent of the K and the J class locomotives, they were also the standard class for main line freight. There were 151 locomotives of this class produced. In later years, they were chiefly used for freight haulage on secondary main lines and branch lines, and were rated to haul 700-750 tons on easy grades. Ab Class locomotives came nearest to being the standard steam locomotive in New Zealand with 141 engines built between 1915 and 1927. When New Zealand workshops were unable to build them fast enough, a number were built by the North British Locomotive Company in Scotland. Ab 832 was one of the last batch delivered by this firm. After entering service in 1925, this engine worked most of its time in the Wellington Province, logging 1,059,458 miles in the process and earning the nickname "Maid Of All Work." In 1954, it was transferred from Wellington to Napier, and then moved to Frankton in 1967. In the last week before Christmas 1967, the locomotive worked a series of sponsored specials (Farmers Santa Train) between Frankton and Claudelands. On the 22nd of December 1967, the last day of these workings, 832 was the last steam locomotive to run in regular service for the NZR in the North Island. At this time, the Minister of Railways kindly agreed to allocate the locomotive to MOTAT once it came out of service. Ab 832 made it's final journey to the Museum on the 2nd October 1971, engine and tender being lifted separately onto road transporters for the trip.
25190 Maker's Number
Other name
Ab 832
Credit Line
The North British Locomotive Company Limited. 1925. Steam locomotive [Ab832], 1971.202. The Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT).


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