Series tractors

Series tractors

type Indre-et-Loire (Series 11 to 16)

After the construction of tractor No. 4, the C.F.D. determined the definitive type to be made by the different workshops of the Company. Indeed, in view of the urgency of the needs, the central administration had decided to have the machines necessary for the operation built by the depots-workshops directly concerned.

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The common characteristics of these materials should be as follows:

  • use of Minerva transmission
  • use of 030 locomotive frames as far as possible, to avoid shortening necessary to achieve good stability and to avoid excessive overhangs.
  • realization of a total adhesion machine.
  • option for a central driver's cab framed by the engine and fuel tank.
  • the Berliet MDK 2 C 6-cylinder 150 HP engines were used.
Tractor No. 11 of the C.F.D. at the end of its manufacture (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)
Tractor No. 11 of the C.F.D. at the end of its manufacture (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)

It was on these principles that the series tractors were built, while leaving it to each depot manager to design the most pleasing silhouette.

Continuing its programme, the Neuillé workshop set about building the two units intended for the Yonne line, machines Nos. 8 and 2 having been acquired for this purpose by the Company.

Tractor C.F.D. n° 11 rear 3/4 view (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)
Tractor C.F.D. n° 11 rear 3/4 view (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)

Description of the Indre-et-Loire type tractor (Series 11 to 16)

These two tractors were very close to the No. 4 prototype and differed from it only in a few details:

  • the cabin of the same design, however, had its access doors extended forward instead of occupying the central portion of the side faces. In addition, the two vertical openings in the front face had been extended down to the level of the hands.
  • the length of the new engine had pushed the front of the hood to the end of the apron and the nose was shorter. The trapezoid-shaped grille had its largest base facing upwards. The access doors were larger,
  • the low height sand boxes reigned along the entire length of the deck.
  • a skirt-shaped protective plate had been installed on each side of the machine under the apron and had two openings forming steps.
  • the rear hood was more voluminous due to the increase in fuel tank capacity.
Tractor C.F.D. n° 11 3/4 front view (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)
Tractor C.F.D. n° 11 3/4 front view (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)

The decoration was identical to the n° 4, however the edges of the chassis and the skirts were painted in red. The connections of the hood sheets were painted in yellow, as well as the radiator grill. The grille was later repainted in red. Finally, these tractors received a dark green livery at Chablis and the window borders and grilles were painted yellow.

The next two units differed only in their cab with an overhanging roof, fully glazed by means of two windows on each side, and the door sliding outwards, leaving half the side face completely clear. The absence of skirts was also noted.

The livery was originally green. Moreover, the marking was identical. During its stay in Saône-et-Loire, tractor n° 13 received a livery in two tones, red and green.

The fifth unit differed only by a flat-nosed hood to accommodate a larger engine and the installation of a skirt.

The sixth model was never undertaken.

Indre-et-Loire type tractor delivery and assignments (Series 11 to 16)

TRACTOR N° 11

This tractor was started on 2 January 1940 and finished on 30 January 1941, but Berliet was unable to supply the engine on time, so it was temporarily replaced by a 130 HP Renault. During the German invasion, it was evacuated to the free zone and parked in Ligueil, on the southern network of Indre-et-Loire. Due to the shortage of fuel, it did not circulate on this network and was returned to Neuillé at the end of the hostilities. To do so, it was routed by the Tours Tramways and crossed the Loire on the temporary Wilson Bridge on 17 March 1945.

After overhaul at the Neuillé workshops and assembly of its final engine, the Company offered it for rental to the Department to reinforce the faulty engine fleet of the North network. The agreement being made between the two parties, it entered into service on 1st March 1946. It covered 70,000 km, but its new Berliet MDK 2C engine had suffered several damages and had to be replaced three times. When the tractor No. 14 was delivered on 4 September 1948, it was parked and shipped to Chablis in July 1949. It was lifted there until the end of the year, then assigned to the goods department of the Serein line from January 1950, where it was used until its closure on 31 December 1951. In August 1951, he had received a 180 HP Willème engine longer than his predecessor and, as a result, his engine cowling protruded slightly forward.

It was sold on February 20, 1952 to the Chemin de Fer du Blanc in Argent.

Special C.F.D. train towed by tractor No. 11 at Château-Lavallière station on the Nord D'Indre-et-Loire network (Photo F. FONTAINE)
Special C.F.D. train towed by tractor No. 11 at Château-Lavallière station on the Nord D'Indre-et-Loire network (Photo F. FONTAINE)

TRACTOR NO. 12

Construction began on February 2, 1941, and in 1942, shortly before it was finished, it was evacuated to Egreville to avoid its requisition. It was parked there until September 1945, when a 135 HP Berliet engine was assembled and tuned.

Test train of the tractor n° 12 on the C.F.D. line of the Yonne (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)
Test train of the tractor n° 12 on the C.F.D. line of the Yonne (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)

Tested on line on 25 October 1945 in the presence of the Company's Engineers, it towed a convoy of 9 wagons representing a load of 100 t at a speed of 35 km/h with a ramp of 15°/00. Put into regular service from November 1, 1945, its weak engine suffered numerous damages (from December 8, 1946 to May 9, 1947, from October 9, 1947 to December 15, 1947, from May 8, 1948 to July 10, 1948, from February 15, 1950 to April 3, 1959, in April and August 1951). Finally, the Chablis workshops equipped it with a 180 HP Willème engine in August 1951, in the same conditions as on the 11th. However, the installation of a larger radiator was the reason for the upper protrusion of the nose of its engine hood.

Tractor No. 12, at Chablis station, during its in-line tests. (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)
Tractor No. 12, at Chablis station, during its in-line tests. (Collection J.C. RIFFAUD)

It was used until November 8, 1951, when it was shipped to the Electrometallurgical Plant of Saint-Béron.

This tractor was salvaged on February 8, 1952 by the Chemin de Fer du Blanc in Argent where it still stands today.

Tractor No. 12 at the head of a freight train on the Yonne line (Photo F. FONTAINE)
Tractor No. 12 at the head of a freight train on the Yonne line (Photo F. FONTAINE)

These four tractors had been ordered by the Department of Indre-et-Loire on 25 September 1945, on the proposal of the C.F.D. of 21 September, to equip the North and South networks. Tractor 11, owned by the Company and on demonstration on the line from Port-Boulet to Chateau-Renault, provided enormous services and serious savings for the traction service. It was therefore decided to transform 4 machines of the North network and to equip the Ligueil and Neuillé depots with two tractors in order to completely eliminate steam traction.

Transformed No. 12 tractor, towing a train shortly before Lacroche-Migennes (Photo P. LAURENT)
Transformed No. 12 tractor, towing a train shortly before Lacroche-Migennes (Photo P. LAURENT)

TRACTOR 13

This tractor was started on December 5, 1945 from the chassis of machine n° 6 and finished on January 20, 1948. Assigned directly to the Ligueil depot, it provided traction for the freight trains of the southern network until its collision with the Billard A 135 D No. 503 self-propelled billiard machine on 19 July 1949. Returned to Neuillé for refurbishment, it had not yet been completed when the network was closed on 31 December 1949.

Sold to the Department of Saône-et-Loire in early 1950, it was shipped to Etang on October 10, 1950, after revision. It provided the same service on the line from Digoin to Etang until its closure on 15 September 1953. Transferred to Egreville on 14 December 1954, it was bought by the C.F.D., who used it to pull beet trains, replacing the 852 that had been destroyed. When the line from Montereau to Chateau-Landon was closed on September 1, 1959, it was sent to Montmirail for overhaul and transferred to the Vivarais network on December 6, 1960 to serve as a reserve for tractors X and Y. Finally, it returned to Montmirail on November 1, 1968, at the closure of the network, it was scrapped after recovery of its engine and transmission.

Tractor n° 13 on the line from Montereau to Château-Landon (Photo M. RIFAULT)
Tractor n° 13 on the line from Montereau to Château-Landon (Photo M. RIFAULT)

TRACTOR 14

Started at the same time as the 13th, on the chassis of locomotive No. 7, it was quickly abandoned in favour of the latter. Resumed in February 1948, its construction was quickly completed, as it left for testing on 4 September 1948. Immediately assigned to the Neuillé depot, it replaced tractor 11, which was to be transferred to the Chablis depot. He was assigned to the freight train service on all the lines of the Nord network, then was transferred on 20 July 1949 to the Ligueil depot to replace the damaged tractor 13. Immediately after the closure of this network, it was acquired by the Department of Saône-et-Loire and shipped to Toulon-sur-Arroux from Esvres on 25 January 1950.

Tractor n° 14 in Egreville station (Photo M. RIFAULT)
Tractor n° 14 in Egreville station (Photo M. RIFAULT)

He immediately went into service on the Digoin line, transporting convoys of goods from the Forges de Gueugnon. When the network was closed, like on the 13th, it was transferred to Egreville on 28 September 1954, then sold on 20 June 1956 to the SILEC plant in Montereau, after being put on normal track.

TRACTOR 15

Intended for the Ligueil depot, it was undertaken by the Neuillé-Pont-Pierre workshops on 1 October 1948, and was under construction when the network was closed. Initially, the activities of these workshops were to continue, but a decision by the C.F.D. management put an end to these hopes. In fact, the site of Montmirail, closer to the Central Administration, was chosen for the construction of a railway construction plant. The manufacture of the 15th was then abandoned and its elements acquired by the Department of Saône-et-Loire in order to complete it and to add to the new traction fleet of Toulon-sur-Arroux, thus making it possible to completely do away with steam locomotives.

Tractor n° 15 in the shed of Toulon-sur-Arroux (Photo M. RIFAULT)
Tractor n° 15 in the shed of Toulon-sur-Arroux (Photo M. RIFAULT)

The Toulon-sur-Arroux workshops were unable to undertake this work, so on 10 September 1950 the C.F.D. sent all the elements to the Chablis workshop, which took care of the finishing work on this machine. Completed on April 1, 1951, it underwent numerous tests on the Yonne line, then was returned to its depot of assignment where it was received on May 11, 1951. After an intensive service on the line from Digoin to Etang, it was sent to the Mines de Carmaux on July 23rd 1953, on a rental basis, to be employed on the AIbi Pelissier site. Acquired by the C.F.D., at the end of its lease on July 1st 1958, it was transformed in Montmirail and sold on July 20th 1959 to the SODEC factory in Lyndiane (Senegal).

Tractor No. 15, during a derailment on the line from Digoin to Etang (Collection P. M. BREGERIE)
Tractor No. 15, during a derailment on the line from Digoin to Etang (Collection P. M. BREGERIE)

TRACTOR 16

This tractor, intended for the Neuillé depot, was to be built from the chassis of locomotive No. 3. The Berliet engine and Minerva transmission had been supplied at Neuillé-Pont-Pierre. As the decision to close the Indre-et-Loire networks had been taken before the start of the conversion work, the items in stock were sold to the Department of Saône-et-Loire in order to build up a reserve for the maintenance of the equipment in service.

Plan of the 11-12 series tractors. (1/43.5° scale)
Plan of the 11-12 series tractors. (1/43.5° scale)
Plan of 13-16 series tractors. (1/43.5° scale)
Plan of 13-16 series tractors. (1/43.5° scale)

source : MTVS 1989-1

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