1. Southern Oregonian

    Southern Oregonian TrainBoard Member

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    So, I just got my Bachmann QJ (2) and I'd like to know ifI have the history right and also would like to have some questions answered since the internet hasn't been to handy.

    From what I've gathered, Russia ordered then copied a American 2-10-2. Then during their conversion to diesel sold some of their 2-10-2's to China who in turn copied it and made thousands(?). A forum also stated that the QJ's are prone to bering wear, excessive oil usage, rough ride at speed, and poor balancing. I'm wondering why the Chinese would keep building a design that the US abandoned long ago, and why didn't they seek out a more efficient design? By 1960 steam was pretty much dead in the US and it's not like Europe and American steam designs are top secret considering most got scrapped with a few left in parks for all to see. Considering the resources China put into the QJ class, wouldn't have been better to at least attempt to make a Texas, Yellowstone, Challenger, Big Boy, or Allegheny? Okay, maybe not articulated steam, but isn't the Texas the natural progression of the 10 driver arrangement?

    At any rate, I do believe the US has 3 QJ's now and the last QJ to pull a revenue train was something like this year or last year at the latest (Mongolia).
     
  2. Triplex

    Triplex TrainBoard Member

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    The Russian 2-10-2s sold second-hand to China (FD class) wasn't the same as the later QJ. That link suggests the QJ was derived from the Soviet prototype OR21. As for the FD, it wasn't American-built or American-designed as far as I know. The Soviets did order some prototypes from the US immediately before, one of which was a 2-10-4. These were larger than the FD or QJ, with an axle load of 23t (~50000lb) compared to the 21t of a QJ. Note that this is still quite light by US standards; these specific designs weren't used in the US.
    As for why China didn't build more modern wheel arrangments... I guess they didn't see a need to move freight faster when the QJ was designed. I doubt long-distance trucks were important in late-50s China.
     
  3. Southern Oregonian

    Southern Oregonian TrainBoard Member

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    Hey thanks. I was just looking at it when it got here and was thinking 'that's kind of small for the last built revenue steam class in the world.' I've got 2 of the last steam locos that SP&S got and they just dwarf it in size, weight, and speed. Then again, one's a Northern and the other is a Challenger, yet they're both from the 30's and 40's.

    I'm just wondering why the US and Europe could make freight locos that were counterbalanced to 60-70 mph in the 30's on, while QJ's from the 80's were hard pressed to do more then 55 mph. Garratts come to mind too, but I'm not very knowledgeable about them.
     
  4. Triplex

    Triplex TrainBoard Member

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    Driver size, for one thing. Those US fast freight engines - Mountains, Berkshires, Texans, Challengers - usually had 69" drivers, or higher in the case of 4-8-2s. There were no 2-10-2s built in the last generation of US steam; few slower designs at all, apart from the N&W Y5/6/6b. In China, 69" drivers were found on Pacifics, on the low side by US standards.

    For a North American, everywhere else's steam looks small. To my knowledge, the highest axle load on a non-North-American steam locomotive was 25t on some Chilean 4-8-2s, making them comparable to an USRA light. Compare 39t for the heaviest anywhere, the first batch of C&O Alleghenies. Chinese mainline power (typically 21t steam, 23t diesel) seems comparable to Australian standard/broad gauge. In each case, I expect the increase in allowable axle load doesn't necessarily reflect improved track maintenance, but the reduced vibration produced by diesels.
     
  5. Westfalen

    Westfalen TrainBoard Member

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    The last QJs in revenue mainline service in China was on December 8th 2005 on the Jitong railway. When I visited the Inner Mongolia/Manchuria coal mining region in 2007 all we saw running were SY class 2-8-2s on coal branches and most of these are gone now as well. The Chinese authorities got rid of the last steam in main line service along with any industrial steam within travelling distance of Beijing before the 2008 olympic games so they didn't look like a third world country to the expected foreign visitors.

    As for the relative small size of the QJ to U.S. steam North America is one of the few regions where one or two mile long freight trains are the normal practice, most countries, including China seem to run their general freight in shorter trains more often and faster so U.S. size steam locos wouldn't have been much use to them. No need to build a Big Boy if you only need a medium size 2-10-2.

    BTW Bachmann also make nice models of the SY and JS class 2-8-2s if you can find them, I believe model railroading has still not caught on much in China because the general populace still do not have much free time or money to spend on hobbies.
     
  6. Southern Oregonian

    Southern Oregonian TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks again.

    Yeah, I saw the JS class for sale in various schemes (like the US/PRC export special) but it didn't really grab my attention. Once I get this guy tested and get my layout started (someday, I'm SO lazy) it'll be assigned to general service and probably helping-not that I think my brass challenger would need much help. I still think it is weird that Bachmann ONLY makes the Chinese locos for the Asian Market. As I said before, the U.S. does have a few JS and QJ locos running around.

    So what was it like seeing revenue steam? The closest I can get are watching the SP&S 700 and SP 4449 do specials.
     
  7. Westfalen

    Westfalen TrainBoard Member

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    Even though it was only a shadow of the glory days of just a few years before it was still a thrill realising that these were not excursion engines or museum pieces but just workaday locomotives earning their living. I was one of only two 'foreigners' in a group of Americans and a couple of them that were old enough to remember said it reminded them of the Appalachian coalfields in the last days of steam.

    I have an SY I bought in Beijing and a JS and a fleet of coal gondolas that I aquired later, one day I hope to build a small HO layout representing a Chinese coal mining area to run them on.
     
  8. Southern Oregonian

    Southern Oregonian TrainBoard Member

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    The QJ I got was the last run so it has the experimental turbine coal gas tender. It works for me since I'm modeling the Great Pacific Northwest and we burned oil in our steamers. Our mainline steam stopped before 1960 here and the shays stopped sometime there after, long before I was born. That must have been something to see.
     
  9. Westfalen

    Westfalen TrainBoard Member

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    Steam finished here in late 1969. I remember my first couple of years at school there was a coal branch a block away with 4-6-0s on mine runs all day and then after school sitting in the front yard of my grand parent's place watching pacifics on commuter trains passing on the mainline across the road from the house. Memories.

    Found this site about the QJ. http://www.chinesemodeltrains.com/encyclopedia_qj.html Apparently the last one in coal mine service ran in March 2013.
     
  10. Southern Oregonian

    Southern Oregonian TrainBoard Member

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  11. Southern Oregonian

    Southern Oregonian TrainBoard Member

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    I have another QJ and Boone and Scenic RR's JS coming but I was wondering, what all did Iowa Interstate and B&SRR have to do to them to get them to FRA and Amtrak compliance? I know SP 4449 just went through it's boiler inspection but I had read that the Chinese locos in recent years needed unspecified work done on them for "new" regulations.
     
  12. ddechamp71

    ddechamp71 TrainBoard Member

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    Aren't the 3 QJs imported in the US anymore operated by RJ Corman?

    Dom
     
  13. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    As far as I can recall, Corman only got one. The other two were, I believe still are, on the Iowa Interstate.
     
  14. ddechamp71

    ddechamp71 TrainBoard Member

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    OK, thanks, I've a better understanding. ;)

    Dom
     
  15. Southern Oregonian

    Southern Oregonian TrainBoard Member

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    Yeah, Iowa Interstate has the only two QJ's I know of, and Boone & Scenic Valley have the only JS I know of.

    As for the HO guys,

    The small defector QJ #7127
    IMG_1476.jpg IMG_1477.jpg IMG_1478.jpg IMG_1479.jpg

    And B&SV RR's JS before they "Americanized" it.
    IMG_1471.jpg IMG_1472.jpg IMG_1473.jpg IMG_1475.jpg
     
  16. Southern Oregonian

    Southern Oregonian TrainBoard Member

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    So, Iowa Interstate gave up their QJs. looks like they gave them to Central States Steam? Sounds like the insurance was too much. :(
     
  17. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Had not heard about these locos recently. Have they been operated at all?
     
  18. Southern Oregonian

    Southern Oregonian TrainBoard Member

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    No idea, sounds like RJ Corman have abandoned "Old Smokey" their QJ so that's most of the Chinese steamers homeless or in a questionable state.
     

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