Locomotive No.34 (1995)

Laxey Car Shed, 2017

Locomotive No.34 at Laxey Car Shed, January 2017 © Andrew Scarffe

CURRENT STATUS AND LOCATION YEAR LAST OPERATED LIVERY
Stored, Laxey Car Shed 2017 Yellow with Red Wasp Stripes

History:
No.34 has had a very varied one! In 1994, the idea to revive the Snaefell Car No.7 ‘Maria’, An electric locomotive built for freight (primarily coal to the Summit Hotel and Power Station below the Bungalow), was thought up for the Centenary Celebrations. However, it had been stored outside the Snaefell Car Shed from 1954, and was very rotten and in poor condition.

A decision was then made to build a replica, construction starting in the Derby Castle Bottom Shed during 1994, and then moving to the then-newly rebuilt Snaefell Car Shed at Laxey during August 1995. The new No.7 was outshopped a year later in 1996 with two G.E K11 Controllers and a pair of fabricated Milnes Trucks, fitted with original Mather and Platt traction motors (displaced during the 1977-1979 Aachen re-equipment programme, and parts kept in storage for re-assembly). After making appearances at a few enthusiast events in 1997 and 1998, it was stored at the end of the same year.

The M.E.R had been searching for a dedicated Works Car for quite some time, and, after the withdrawl of Car No.27 with electrical problems in Summer 2001, the plan was forward and later accepted to use the S.M.R No.7 replica with the ‘Atalanta’ diesel generator that had been previously mounted on and inside Wagon No.8.

It was then moved from storage in the Laxey Snaefell Car Shed in June 2003 to the Derby Castle Bottom Shed, to be rebuilt into its current form and renumbered No.34 (the next available Car number), using the Brush ‘D’ Trucks 988 and 989 from Car No.25. The car made it’s debut at the 2004 Enthusiasts Weekend, however it suffered several faults and as a result made its first running appearance in 2006. No.34 has since been used on dedicated works duties, in addition to appearing at several enthusiast events, hauling a trailer on short-hop journeys including on the IOMR in 2010 as well as more common territory on the M.E.R.

No.34 has operated on all three of the Islands major railways – an accolade it shares only with the IoMR’s No.15 ‘Caledonia’.

Information:


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