Simply known as “The Climax”, (although officially
listed as Locomotive No. 4 “Luddenham” on the Turrella Tramway
Roster) this locomotive was originally built by the Climax Manufacturing
Company of Corry, Pennsylvania, U.S.A. in 1916 for the Longworth’s
Logging Company Ltd of Kendall on the mid north coast of NSW. The Climax
worked the forests of region until the Great Depression caused the Company
to close the logging operations in 1929. Idle for 4 years the loco came
to life on a fateful day in May 1933. In an attempt to recommence operations
the Climax was taken on a initial run to test the strength of the bridges
and trestles of the tramway. However, the years of decay had taken their
toll on the line’s infrastructure. Halfway across one of the bridges
the girders gave way and the Climax plunged upside down into the creek
below. The loco was eventually recovered and repaired, but never worked
on the line again.
|Photo: Longworth's Climax at Kendall NSW
||Photo: Turrella Tramway’s B Class
Climax high on one of the Sandstone & Termite’s daunting
timber trestles during a recent visit.
The Climax was eventually sold to the Turrella Tramway
in the late 1940s. With the success of the Shay, a second loco was need
to assist in the movement of logs along the branchline to Coal Creek.
The second engine was required to carry on the operations of the tramline
during the times when the Shay was being overhauled. The Climax was
also needed to haul out the logs over some of the lighter weight track,
for which heavier Shay was unsuited.
Photo: The Climax Company Logo
on display on the cab of the Tyers Valley B class Climax, now preserved
at Emerald, Victoria by Puffing Billy.
After an extensive overhaul, which saw the replacement
of the ‘American spark arrestor’ for a straight ‘English’
style funnel the Climax was put to work at Turrella. Besides its logging
work at Coal Creek and on Turrella Bank, the Climax can be sometimes
seen pulling slow-mixed goods trains between Girlieville and Luddenham.
|Photos: (Above and Below)
Turrella Tramway’s B Class Climax seen near the cliff face near
Sandstone Station on Sandstone & Termite Railway.
(Click on your return Ticket)