Pilbara Railways Historical Society Inc. 
6 Mile Museum 
PO BOX 412
Karratha WA 6714
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Locomotives, rollingstock and railway equipment of the Pilbara Region of Western Australia

Iron Ore Alco M-636  5502  (1976) 
Goldsworthy Mining Iron Ore EE B-Class  1  (1965)
Mt Newman Mining Iron Ore EMD F7A  5450  (1951)
Robe River Iron Iron Ore Alco RSC-3  4002  (1951)
Hamersley Iron Iron Ore Alco C-415 1000 (1966)
  Iron Ore Alco S-2  007 (1940) 
  Iron Ore Alco C-636R 3017 (1970)
Public Works Department   Simplex P22    
Wright Prospecting Asbestos   Wittenoom


Locomotives and Rollingstock

BHP Iron Ore - ALCO M-636 5502
Length 19.71m
Width 3.15m
Height 4.64m
Weight 188.8t
Axle Load 30.5t
Engine Alco 251 F V15 Turbo charged
Built by Comeng NSW in 1976 for Mt. Newman Mining. Used for ore trains from Mt Newman to Port Hedland. Overhauled 5/1992 and repainted in BHP blue and white. Retired from service 7/1994 due to broken shaft to air compressor. Donated to museum in full operating condition in November 1995 by BHP. Transported to Six Mile 28th -29th November 1995

Plate      Loco

Goldsworthy Mining - GOLDSWORTHY No.1
The Mt. Goldsworthy Mining Co. purchased two locomotives for rail construction service in the Pilbara, and took delivery on 1 December, 1965.

After the company's iron ore carrying railway finally came into service, linking the mine with Finucane Island export point, the two B-class were pressed into shunting service and in addition, rostered to work the lightly loaded general freight trains on the length. In 1968, a serious accident involving B-class No.1 and a larger ore carrying unit practically destroyed the former, and as a replacement, EE supplied a complete body and frame, less diesel engine and bogies, in December 1970 (EE's makers no.232). This and salvaged parts from the smashed unit formed a new No. 1 locomotive, donated to Pilbara Railway Historical Society in 1995.

Plate      Loco

Mt Newman Mining - EMD F7A 5450
A diesel electric locomotive built in the USA in 1951. Previously owned by Western Pacific Railroads Company (USA), 5450 was one of two F7A's purchased by Mt. Newman Mining for construction of their railway. Out of service by late 1971, 5450 was donated to the Museum by Mt. Newman Mining in 1978. In May 1985 the engine of this loco was started for the first time in nearly 14 years, and the loco has since been restored to mainline standard. 5450's first mainline trip was to Camp Curlewis prior to it's closure at the end of November 1987.

Plate      Loco

Robe River Iron - ALCO RESC-3 40 CLASS 4002
A diesel electric locomotive built in Canada for the New South Wales Government Railways in 1951. One of two 40 Class locos used to power the Royal Train in New South Wales during the Australian visit of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth 11 in 1954. 4002 was one of two 40 class purchased by Cliffs Robe River Iron Associates and used in the construction of their railway. Donated to the Museum in 1979, this loco has been restored to mainline standard.

Plate      Loco

Hamersley Iron - ALCO C-415 1000
A diesel electric built in the USA in 1966. The first of this type to be made, it was used as demonstration unit by Alco, and toured in the USA before being purchased by Hamersley Iron in 1968. It was used for ballast and work trains, and shunting in Seven Mile Yard. Donated to the Museum by Hamersley Iron in 1972, it has seen extensive use on passenger trains since that time. This is the only loco of this type to operate outside of North America.

Plate      Loco

Hamersley Iron - ALCO 5-2 007
MABEL A diesel electric built in the USA in 1940, and is one of the oldest diesel electrics in Australia. Purchased by Hamersley Iron in 1965. Mabel was transported to Australia in the same ship carrying the first three Alco C-628's. Used on ballast and work trains, 007 ended her working life pushing loaded ore cars through the Parker Point Dumper. Taken out of service in 1972, Mabel was donated to the Museum by Hamersley Iron in 1976.


Hamersley Iron - ALCO C-636 3017
Length 21.18m
Width 3.10m
Height 4.71 m
Weight 180t
Axle Load 30.2t
Engine Alco 251 F V16 Turbo charged

Built by Alco in the USA in 1970, this loco was the last 'C' class locomotive built by Alco. Originally numbered 2017. Renumbered in 1972. Used for ore trains from Tom Price and Paraburdoo. Rebuilt with full width "Pilbara" cab in 1984. Last revenue job in service was to power Society 20th anniversary train to Tom Price in August 1995. Retired from service February 1996. Donated to museum in full working order April 1996. Last Alco to be overhauled by Hamersley Iron at Seven Mile workshops.

Plate      Loco      

The smallest operable diesel loco in the museum, one of six built in England in the 1950's and exported to Western Australia. These handy little locos saw service on wharfs scattered up and down the coast of W.A. with the Public Works Department. P22 was used on the Pt. Samson jetty until 1976, when it was donated to the Museum by the Public Works Department.

Plate      Loco      Loco

Wright Prospecting - WITTENOOM EXPRESS
This unique piece of the Pilbara's railway and mining history, is a battery powered unit and car was kindly donated by Wright Prospecting in 2003.


The Society's first two passenger coaches were purchased in 1975, and are ex-New South Wales Government Railways FS type, built in 1935-37. 2138 is named Weelamurra and 2141 Fortescue, after local rivers. In 1987 a further FS, (2143) and KBY Brake Van (2513) were purchased and will be named Bellary and Portland respectively. They were railed to Perth and then shipped to Dampier by Ocean Freeway. The Pilbara Railway Historical Society also use two Hamersley Iron sleeping coaches (ex WestraiI AH), and another FS (20010), set up as a conference car.

Coaches      Coaches      Coaches

4079 - Pendennis Castle
In March 1924, locomotive No. 4079, Pendennis Castle, rolled out of the Great Western Railway’s famous Swindon Works. This locomotive, the seventh of its class, was destined to become the most famous and most travelled of the 171 Castle class 4-6-0’s built between 1923 and 1950. Famous steam locomotive from the Great Western Railway was in our proud care for 23 years on loan from Hamersley Iron/Rio Tinto.or us, "The Pendennis" is now back in the U.K. and being looked after by the Great Western Society at Didcot. Click here to see the latest news on the restoration progress.
Loco "Pendennis Castle" under steam, being admired by a group of enthusiasts Loco Pendennis Castle" relishing a run to Tom Price
Loco   Water Gin Water Gin - Still on display at the museum

In 1925, Pendennis Castle took part in the Locomotive Exchange trials with the London and North Eastern Railway. It ran on the LNER line from Kings Cross to Doncaster against Gresley Pacific 2545, "Diamond Jubilee" which it outperformed easily despite its smaller size.
Its superiority was attributed to a higher boiler pressure and better valve gear. It continued in service hauling crack express passenger trains in the Western Region, until 1964.

On 09.05.64 whilst working a special train to commemorate the 60th anniversary of "City of Truro’s" 100mph record run, some firebars collapsed while the train was at 96mph and still accelerating. This failure caused severe damage to driving wheel axleboxes and Pendennis Castle was immediately condemned.

The locomotive would have been scrapped soon after, but escaped the cutter’s torch when Mr M.F. Higson purchased it and had it restored to working order at Swindon works for special trains. By 1976 Pendennis Castle was in storage at Steamtown Carnforth, in the ownership of Mr W. McAlpine. At this point, 4079 was purchased by Hamersley Iron, who had it restored to working order once more by the workforce at Steamtown. This work involved mainly boiler repairs which included a new smokebox tubeplate.

The great locomotive made its last run in England on 29th May 1977, on its run to the docks at Avonmouth (Bristol) prior to being loaded onto a ship bound for Sydney. It remained stored in Sydney at the Everleigh Carriage Works for nine months until transported from Newcastle, New South Wales to Dampier, Western Australia aboard the "Iron Baron" along with three brand new General Electrical locomotives for Hamersley Iron.
The locomotive arrived at Dampier on 29th April 1978 and was placed into the care of the Pilbara Railways Historical Society at a ceremony shortly afterwards. It’s inaugural passenger train journey in Australia was on the 7th November 1978, it carried 60 school children on a return trip from "7 Mile" to Dugite.

Height = 13’ - 5½"
Width = 8’ - 8"
Length = 64’ - 1¾"
WEIGHT: 126 Tons, 11 cwt (in working order)

Coal = 6 tons
Water = 4,000 gallons
Grate area = 29 square feet
Boiler pressure = 225 p.s.i.
Cylinders = 4 of 16" diameter x 28" stroke (all high pressure)
Driving Wheels = 6’ - 8½" diameter
Maximum Speed = 100 m.p.h.
Tractive effort = 31,625 lb. (at 85% B.P.)
Power = 2,300 h.p.

The locomotive underwent extensive overhaul at Hamersley’s Railway Workshops from early 1985 to mid 1987. The need to lift the boiler to repair an exhaust steam leak gave the opportunity to attend to several other areas worthy of advance maintenance, including a total repaint.
A wide range of devoted people - tradesmen, apprentices and volunteers contributed to this unusual project, made all the more challenging by the remote environment and scarcity of steam-experienced tradesmen.

Fitting of electric headlight and markers to comply with Australian regulations.
Fitting of steam-driven turbo-generator and electricals.
Fitting of two Gresham and Craven live steam injectors, to replace unreliable live steam and exhaust steam injectors originally fitted to the locomotive.
Fitting of step and grab iron to front driver’s side of locomotive for easy access to smokebox.
Fitting of two UHF two-way radios (H.I. standard), powered by wet-cell battery, trickle charged from turbo-generator.
Fitting of Westinghouse air brake gauge from train.
Replacement of old asbestos and fibreglass lagging with new fibreglass insulating materials.
Reconstruction of brick arch with modern refactory blocks reinforced with stainless-steel needles.
Provision of bronze cylinder lining and piston rings to all cylinder cocks.
Rebuilding of all internal baffles and top sheets to tender’s water space.
Replacement of corroded sections of boiler cladding.
Total repaint in poly-urethane paints as per original details.

The train used a Westinghouse brake system controlled by Pendennis Castle’s vacuum brakes through a proportional valve fitted on the water gin.

Over 23 years the PRHS operated 4079 on the Hamersley Iron railway between Dampier, Tom Price and Paraburdoo mainly during the cooler winter months of each year.

ALCO C-628 2000
A diesel electric built in the USA for Hamersley Iron in 1965. 2000 was the first of five of this type, which formed Hamersley's first mainline fleet of locos. They were at that time the heaviest and most powerful mainline diesel electric’s in Australia. 2000 is the only survivor of the five, and was donated to the Museum in 1983 by Hamersley Iron. This currently sits out the front of Pilbara Iron's 7 Mile Facility.

Plate      Loco


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