Two different classes of steel bodied brakevans with limited passenger accommodation have been preserved.
Until the late 1990s they were attached to virtually all freight trains to accommodate the guard, to transport railway employees and relief crews and to provide accommodation for passengers on specific mixed trains. Guards were gradually removed from freight trains in the late 1900s as containerisation of freight grew and two person train crews became universal. Freight brakevans are now a rarity on operating rail systems in S.A.
These vans are not attached to regular SteamRanger passenger services. They are stored at Mt Barker and Goolwa depots, where they currently provide valuable storage facilities, but could be accredited for on-track use if needed.
The retained vans are:
8300 (AVAY) class.
SteamRanger has retained two of these 41 foot, 25 tonne cars, 8309 and 8336 (reclassified as AVAY 5, 7 & 9). 8309 entered service with the SAR in the late 1940s whilst 8336 was part of a second narrower bodied series which was built in the 1960s. The cars have goods compartments at either end with side sliding doors and a central guards compartment with a desk with overhead periscope mirrors, cooking facilities and a toilet. There were no end doors, limiting their use on passenger trains. The car had a small passenger compartment adjacent to the guard's compartment and could seat up to 8 passengers.
These cars were of basically similar design but equipped with end doors to allow their use on passenger trains. They also accommodated 8 passengers. SteamRanger has retained CGP2 (pictured above) and CGP6. The larger window in the photo locates the passenger compartment
Employee Sleeping, Ablution & Kitchen Cars
These cars are were converted from wooden "Centenary" passenger cars in the 1950's for use in SAR workmen's camp trains. The cars below are located at Goolwa Depot to provide washing and messing facilities for volunteers working the Cockle Train service and to provie overnight accommodation when needed.
In providing these facilities they closely reflect their traditional SAR role.
The cars retained are;
- ESV class - 4 wheel and bogie sleeping vans.
Steamranger has 5 cars at Goolwa Depot available for use by volunteers not living on the South Coast.
Cars 8137, 8144 and 8168 were built in the 1960s on the recovered underframes of suburban cars 340, 342 and 423. The cars provide sleeping and living accommodation for volunteers with beds, heaters and kitchen at one end and a storage area at the other.
Cars 8210 and 8218 were built on smaller 4 wheel underframes with similar facilities but, being shorter, have no storage compartment. Some of the ESVs have been "adopted" by regular workers and equipped to their personal preferences.
- PWA class - Permanent way ablution car PWA3
This car, rebuilt from suburban car 486, in 1969 now consists of a 10 metre compartment at one end containing wash basins and four shower cubicles together with a wood fired hot water heater. The other half of the car, as shown in the photo below, has a storage bunker for fuel and an elevated lowerable water tank.
- PWK class - Permanent way kitchen car PWK9
Converted from centre loader 35X in 1970, this car has a large messing compartment at one end, with a long table down the centre, side benches and storage cupboards. The other end contains a food preparation area with wood stove, fridge and freezer, together with a small sleeping compartment used in SAR days by the rostered kitchen hand / cook.
PWA class Ablution Car
Shower compartment at left
ESV class workman's sleeper
one of 5 at Goolwa Depot
PWK class Kitchen Car
Mess compartment at right end
Wagons of two classes are in active use on the railway, transporting track components, rail and equipment along its full length.
The wagons are also used to assist in removal of overhanging or obstructing vegetation.
The two types are:
- FB class - 46 foot long, 16 tonne tare (pictured)
- FC class - 39 feet long, 14 tonne tare
SteamRanger has representatives of four classes of open wagons, one with wooden sides and three steel types.
The wagons are used to form work trains to transport ballast and equipment and to collect firewood and tree prunings along the line.
The classes represented are:
- W class - Wooden sided bogie wagon; 45ft, 16 tonne, later classified AOWA
- OB class - Bogie Gondola wagon; 46 ft, 17 tonne
- OF class - 4 wheel open wagon; 23 ft, 9 tonne
- OBF class - 4 wheel open wagon; 23 ft, 9 tonne
loaded with track machines
SteamRanger has representatives of three classes of box cars, one four wheeler and two bogie cars. The cars are primarily used as storage vehicles at both Mt Barker and Goolwa depots.
The classes represented are:
- DWF class - 4 wheel boxcar; 23 ft, 9 tonne
- M (ABBA) class - Bogie boxcar; 39ft, 17 tonne
- SLC class - Bogie louvre boxcar ex narrow gauge; 34 ft, 17 tonne
When it assumed responsibility for maintenance of the branchline, SteamRanger took over a former SAR ballast train which had been used in the interim by the State Transport Authority (SAR). The train consists of five "Z" class four wheel ballast hoppers dating from 1911 - 1915 and capable of carrying 15 ton of ballast, and a "Y" class wagon that had been converted to a ballast plough in 1959.
Z class hopper
Ballast regulator (plough)
As pictured below, the vehicles were used extensively in upgrading the line prior to SteamRanger commencing regular services.
SteamRanger has retained two 39 foot 18 tonne Bogie water tanks of the TW class, originally used for petroleum transport.
They can be operated on-track as needed or used for static liquid storage.
Sheep and Cattle Wagons
One example of the SAR "SF" class 4 wheel sheep van and one example of the CF class 4 wheel cattle wagon have been retained. These wagons date from the early 1950s. The vehicles are stored unservicable at Finniss.
Track Inspection, Road and Road/Rail vehicles are described on the TRACK page.
Revised 5 May 2016