Locomotives / Train Sets

4-8-0 (Mastodon / 12-Wheeler)

Steam Locomotive

Series: "Twelve-Wheeler"

Entry Last Edited: 04/10/2024 | Content ©www.RailRoadJunction.net | The following text is exclusive to this site.
Specifications [+]
The 4-8-0 steam locomotive had a healthy run into the 1900s and was utilized for its pulling power throughout the world.
The 4-8-0 was another popular steam-based locomotive design featured during the middle-latter half of the 1800s into the early part of the 1900s. In the Whyte notation approach, the 4-8-0 was given eight powered wheels with a four-wheeled twin axle at a leading truck (and no trailing wheels whatsoever). The 4-8-0 form succeeded the 2-8-0 models and were themselves supplanted on paper by 4-8-2 locos as time wore on. When compared to the earlier 2-8-0, the 4-8-0 offered increased power at the expense of showcasing a dimensionally smaller firebox.

Blessed with decent speed, the powerful design proved helpful in freight and express passenger service roles.

The first "tender" version appeared in the United States as early as 1855 followed by the first "true type" form in 1882 - the first successful application being Central Pacific Railroad's No.229 which had the unofficial name of "Mastodon". The first "tank" version of the arrangement appeared in Britain in 1909.

Andrew Jackson Stevens was credited with design of the No.229 Mastodon and the locomotive was constructed at Central Pacific Sacramento facilities. It had the classic steam locomotive shape and appearance including an angled "cow catcher", towering smoke funnel, cylindrical body, and boxy driver's compartment. A supply tender was usually paired with the machine at its rear to feed the boiler unit.

The Mastodon name is typically associated with the 4-8-0 (and the 4-10-0 for that matter). It also came to be known as the "Twelve Wheeler" in time.

Like other steam-based loco designs of the period, the 4-8-0 was utilized throughout the world including Asia-Pacific, Australia-New Zealand, Europe, Africa, Scandinavia, and North America.

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Specifications [ 4-8-0 (Mastodon / 12-Wheeler) ]

Various - Central Pacific Sacramento; Ross Winans; Baldwin Locomotive Works - USA / North Eastern Railway; London and South Western Railway - UK; Queensland Government Railways - Australia / PLM - France; Hudswell Clarke - Ireland / Addington Railway Workshops - New Zealand / Putilov Works Leningrad - Soviet Union

United States
1880 - 1958
Production Run
Train driver seating position graphic

Driver Position
17.7m | 58.0 ft
NOTE: May include length of entire train set
197,312 kg
(435,073 lb | 217 US Tons)
Locomotive power source graphical icon
Power Source
1 x Coal or wood-fired steam based unit.
Engine / Drive Source
4,700 hp
Rated Output Power
85.0 kph
(52.8 mph)
Max Speed
Wheel Arrangement
(Loco Facing Left)

Series Variants
4-8-0 - Base Designation in the Whyte Notation.
Operating Countries
Australia; Austria; France; Hungary; Ireland; Mexico; Rhodesia; South Africa; Soviet Union; Spain; Sudan; Sweden; United Kingdom; United States

National flag of Australia National flag of Austria National flag of France National flag of Hungary National flag of Ireland National flag of Mexico National flag of South Africa National flag of the Soviet Union National flag of Spain National flag of Sudan National flag of Sweden National flag of the United Kingdom National flag of the United States

Image of the 4-8-0 (Mastodon / 12-Wheeler)

Image of the 4-8-0 (Mastodon / 12-Wheeler)
Front right side view of a SAR Class 8 steam locomotive.
Public Domain
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