The Rebuild of
FCAF's Garratt Locomotive No. 2
the "L. D. Porta"
updated February 23, 2004
photos, info and most text courtesy
Shaun McMahon except as noted
readers will appreciate, being a Garratt
locomotive (as opposed to a conventional
locomotive) the complexity of the work in hand is
far greater than it was for Camila, the FCAF's
other steamer which was modernized in 1999.
Dismantling and full inspection of the loco began
on 26th February, 2001 (see photos below) and the
rebuild was completed in late 2001. Photos of the
work follow at the bottom of the page. A brief
summary of items attended to during the overhaul
and modifications is as follows:
streamlined live and exhaust steam circuits
coupled with a high degree of insulation for the
-Fitting of Lempor exhaust system, Kordina
and DeLaval blower
-Improvements to combustion system
-Improved and extended mechanical lubrication
inclusive of proportional feed
-Modified driving axle suspension
-Improved boiler insulation
-Improved cylinder insulation
-Improved cab layout to aid single manning
-Raising of cab so as to allow the driver to
stand up properly
-Raising of boiler 300 mm to allow better primary
air flow to firepan, allow the later addition of
a primary air heater, and to provide more room
for the fitting of improved steam circuits
-Increased feedwater capacity
-Increased fuel capacity
-Valve gear overhaul
-Piston and valve ring replacement
-Wheelset replacement and provision of high
adhesion wheel profile
-Evaluation of work to be carried out at stage 2
-Improved sealing of smokebox door
-Replacement of blowdown valve
-Attending to security aspects of existing boiler
-Modification of existing brake gear
-Provision of handrails so as to aid safety
aspect of climbing up on locomotive
-Fitting of test gear so as to evaluate
performance of locomotive in traffic
-Replacement of existing reversing screw (deferred
until later in 2002)
of No. 2- February 2001
||No. 2, with water and fuel tanks
removed, stands outside the FCAF workshop
|No. 2's auxiliary water tanks,
front water tank, and rear combined water/fuel
tank are visible in front of FCAF No. 3 Camila.
|No. 2's cab being removed via a
little "gentle persuasion". Reverser
mounting bracket had to be cut to allow the cab
to be removed.
||Removing No. 2's cab; water and
fuel tanks seen on the right.
|With first stage dismantling
complete, No. 2 is pulled clear of the works. No.
2's regular driver (in high summer season), Chris
Parrott, is just visible driving diesel Tierra
||No. 2's smokebox showing original
blastpipe, which was replaced by a Lempor Ejector
during the rebuild. Compare this to the photo
below showing the new Lempor exhaust system
fabricated by Girdlestone Rail.
|Camila shunts No. 2's boiler,
mainframe, and power units in the works yard at
Estacion Fin Del Mundo.
|No. 2's freshly primered original
boiler (no. 1) on the mainframe inside the shop
at Ushuaia. The spare boiler (no. 2) was modified
by Girdlestone Rail in South Africa (see below)
and was used to replace this boiler during the
|No. 2's front power unit stripped
for overhaul and modification inside the workshop
One of Porta's famous Mitsubishi-built 2-10-2's
now lying derelict. Visible in this photo are the
throttle handle and manual screw reverser which
was to be fitted to No. 2 during its overhaul.
This had to be delayed until later this year so
that the engine could be placed back in service
|No. 2's water tanks undergoing
modification at Ushuaia. Tanks were significantly
enlarged and re-countoured.
Modified Boiler No. 2 for No.
in Girdlestone Rail's Shop in South Africa
Modified Driving Wheelsets for
Featuring Porta "High Adhesion" Profile
at Girdlestone Rail in South Africa
New Lempor Exhaust System for
Lempor Exhaust Nozzles and
Blower for No. 2
New Oil Burner for No. 2
Oil is atomized and ejected by
steam around the perimeter of the gap at the top
of the assembly
No. 2 Rebuild Progress on the FCAF
Shaun McMahon reports from Ushuaia that good
progress is being made on Garratt locomotive No.
2's overhaul and modernization. (photos courtesy
of Shaun McMahon)
FCAF No. 3 Runs Around Its
Train at Estacion Fin Del Mundo. In the
background is the boiler and mainframe of No. 2
No. 2 mounted aboard one of the railway's flat
bogie wagons. August 25, 2001.
No. 2's front power unit
mounted on supports for easy access during
Photo of the power unit showing
the cylinders prior to installation of jacketing
No. 2's front power unit
mounted on supports, showing fabrication of
cylinder jacket to allow extra-heavy insulation
of all cylinder external surfaces in accordance
with Porta's latest recommendations.
No. 2's front power unit,
mounted on supports showing nearly-complete
cylinder jacket on one cylinder
||No. 2's "new"
boiler shown in its new position (raised
considerably compared to the original
installation) with new Lempor exhaust
|A closeup of No. 2's
smokebox showing the details of the
Lempor exhaust stack and steam exhaust
||Another view of No. 2's
main frames with the boiler installed,
showing greatly increased cab height
which allows "full scale"
driver to work in comfort! Greatly
increased height of Lempor exhaust stack
|No. 2's handsome brass
builder's plates on the cab side.
||Backhead view of No. 2's
new boiler with some cab accessories
|Back of No. 2's cab
showing greatly increased height for
improved operator comfort.
||Bottom view of No. 2's
firebox, showing new oil burner and
"flared" air admission inlets
to promote turbulence for better fuel/air
mixing and improved combustion efficiency.
|One of No. 2's two engine
units showing partially insulated
cylinders. Note "pocket" on
front surface of cylinder to allow
installation of extra heavy insulation.
||No. 2's new rear water
tank. Height and profile have been
signicantly altered to provide greatly
increased water capacity while
maintaining good visibility. Center
opening (painted black) is for
installation of new fuel oil tank (shown
|New fuel oil tank ready
for installation in recess provided in
rear water tank.
||Side view of new rear
|Rear view of new high
capacity front water tank.
||Side view of new front
water tank showing "streamlined"
profile, similar to No. 2's "big
sisters" such as the South African
Railways GMAM Garratts.
No. 2's rebuild was
completed in December 2001, and the locomotive was
renamed "L. D. Porta" before testing and tuning
up was begun. Tuning up was completed in early 2002 and
the locomotive was returned to regular service.