Tw12-12 + 16C11-? (StEG 4423/1920), preserved at Chabówka railway stock heritage park; photo taken on April 13, 2004.




Another picture of the Tw12-12, taken on July 29, 2006. Three-axle riveted 16C11 tender is particularly noteworthy.




CFR 50.025 (StEG 4482/1921) at the Muzeum locomotivelor cu abur in aer liber, Resita, Romania, August 2003; photo by Adrian Raduta (thanks a lot!).




Beautiful photo of the OSE Kb 818 (StEG 4608/1924); photo courtesy Josef Pospichal – many thanks!




  28-023 (Wiener Neustadt 5036/1911) with fictitious FS number, under restoration at the Museo Ferroviario Campo Marzio, Trieste. Photo taken on October 4, 2008.




It is not easy to take a good photo of this engine! 28-029 (ex KkStB 80.120, StEG 3814/1911) awaiting restoration at the premises of the railway museum in Lublana. Photo taken on June 18, 2009.




Tw12-47 (StEG 4416/1920) in the Soviet service, date and location unknown: note number written in Russian script and traces of removed Polish emblems. Source: National Digital Archives ( Used by permission.



An unknown Tw12 (possibly in Ostbahn service), February 1940, location unknown. Source: as above.



BBÖ 80.4911 (WrN 5698/1921), fitted with experimental heating device. Of rather ugly appearance, it was promptly dubbed ‘Lautsprecher’ (loudspeaker) or ‘Bauernschreck’ (farmers’ nightmare – the origin of this nickname is unclear to me). Experiments probably were not successful. Photo taken in 1935, location unknown. Source: as above.



Two side drawings: class 80.100…



… and 80.900 with Lentz poppet valve gear. Source: Triebfahrzeuge österreichischer Eisenbahnen: Dampflokomotiven BBÖ und ÖBB (see References).



This engine is most probably Südbahn 80.36 (Wiener Neustadt 5175/1913); location and date unknown. After the war it was taken over by Italian FS and re-numbered 476.041. Source: Die Lokomotive September 1914.



BBÖ 80.5903 (StEG 4532/1922), probably a factory photo. This engine is fitted with Lentz poppet valve gear. Taken over by DRG and re-numbered 57 317, it later returned to Austria and served as 57.317 until June 1958. Source: Die Lokomotive March 1923.



BBÖ 80.3924 (StEG 4421/1920, fitted with Dabeg feedwater pump) shared a similar fate: after serving with DRG as 57 291, it was returned, re-numbered 57.291 and remained in use until July 1965. Location and date unknown. Source: Die Lokomotive September 1934.



KkStB 80.19 (StEG 3749/1910) also served with DRG as 57 409; after WWII it was taken over by ČSD and withdrawn in April 1952. Location and date unknown, source: Die Lokomotive February 1935.



Romanian 50.599 (Malaxa 139/1935), Predeal, August 30, 1975. This locomotive remained in service until January 1997. Photo from my collection.

In 1900, Wiener-Locomotiv-Fabriks-AG (commonly known as WLF or Floridsdorf) built the first class 180 freight locomotive. These machines, heavy and powerful for that time, ran on saturated steam and had compound steam engines. They may be considered a good example of Austro-Hungarian design practice in combining comparatively high tractive effort (13.3 tonnes) with low axle load of only 13.5 tonnes. This demanded five coupled axles. In order to negotiate tight curves, class 180 featured so-called Gölsdorf layout, wherein 1st and 5th axles had side-play of 26 mm and 3rd axle – of 20 mm. Second and fourth axles were fixed; main rod was connected to the latter and, in order to keep it short, piston rod was lengthened and crosshead had double-side guides. However, due to short axle base, at least for a 0-5-0, running at higher speed was somehow uneasy. Most Austro-Hungarian locomotives were designed to burn local low-grade coal and class 180 was no exception: grate area of 3.42 sq.m was much larger than in machines of comparable tractive effort built in other countries.

Class 180, of which 239 were eventually built, was a successful design, but advantages of steam superheating were already becoming more and more evident. Karl Gölsdorf preferred compounds, due to better economy, and decided to develop a  variant of the 180 with Schmidt-type superheater of moderate heating surface. Prototype of this engine appeared in 1909 and was immediately accepted as class 80. Slightly heavier than 180, it offered marginally higher tractive effort and similar running qualities combined with better economy. Orders were placed for 561 examples to be built by WLF, Wiener Neustadt, StEG, BMF and Breitfeld-Daněk, but these were not completed before the collapse of Austro-Hungarian monarchy in 1918. Manufacture of this type continued, however, until 1929, and its career was an eventful one.

Production of the initial variant for Austro-Hungarian state railways kkStB totaled just 36 examples (service numbers 80.01 through 80.36). These locomotives had compound engines with high-pressure piston valve and low-pressure slide valve. Next version, classed 80.100 (service numbers 80.100 through 80.203) had piston valves at both high- and low-pressure cylinders. In 1911, a single-expansion variant (class 80.900) appeared and it was destined to out-number the compounds; 208 were supplied to kkStB, which gives a total of 348 built for this service. Eight more were ordered by Südbahn: six from Wiener Neustadt in 1913 and two from StEG in 1915. There were several minor modifications and some later engines were fitted with large Rihosek-type drum spark arrester, characteristic for many Austro-Hungarian machines. After WWI, production continued; those previously ordered by kkStB were completed and offered for sale, there were also new orders:

-        Austrian state railways BBÖ, apart from ninety 80s and ninety 80.900s inherited from kkStB, received 56 examples of the single-expansion variant, plus five 08.600s (80.600 through 80.604, built by Wiener Neustadt in 1920 and 1921) with Gölsdorf-Clench steam dryer instead of superheater and modified undercarriage. Ten compounds were sold to Iran in 1937. Some post-war locomotives of this type were fitted with Lentz-type poppet valve gear; other featured Giesl-type ejector. 80.4911 (Wiener Neustadt 5698/1921) was experimentally fitted with air heater fed from the stack; tests were performed between 1933 and 1937, but this rather ungainly device has not found further use.

-       Romanian state railways CFR took over ten machines originally ordered by kkStB, but not completed before the Armistice, and then purchased ten from Wiener Neustadt and sixty from StEG; all were designated class 50 and last were withdrawn in August 1987.

-        Greek state railways SEK (Sidirodromoi Ellados Kratous) ordered ten machines from StEG in 1924 (4601 through 4610) and further forty in 1926 (4621 through 4655 and 4746 through 4750); they were classed Kb and numbered 811 through 860;

-        In Czechoslovakia, ČSD took over 71 engines (all 80.900s, classed 524.0) plus thirteen ordered by kkStB from Breitfeld-Daněk, but not delivered before the Armistice. More were later ordered from PČM (former BMF, eight examples supplied in 1919) and Breitfeld-Daněk (52 examples, built in 1921 and 1922). Last 25 engines from the latter manufacturer were fitted with twin steam domes connected by a horizontal tube, typical for many Austrian locomotives;

-        Railways of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croatians and Slovenians (SHS), in 1933 renamed JDŽ (Jugoslovenske Državne Železnice), apart from 25 ex-kkStB engines (some sources give 26), mostly 80s, ordered ten brand-new ones from Wiener Neustadt (5735/1923 through 5744/1923). Four more followed from StEG in 1929 (4840 through 4843) and these were the last locos of this type built. All were designated JDŽ class 28;

-        Italian state railways FS took over 28 (some sources give 29) compounds and 72 singles, including all eight from Südbahn; they were classed 475 and 476, respectively. Last were withdrawn from use in the 1950s, seven compounds and five singles were transferred to Yugoslavia in 1947.

Thus, together with those built for PKP (see below), total production of all variants amounted to 766 examples.

Immediately after WWI, Poland took over only eight ex-kkStB locomotives of this type, all singles, which initially retained their original designations. Between 1919 and 1923, 132 more were purchased. Most had initially been ordered by Austro-Hungarian railways and these included 19 examples of class 80 (ordered as 80.38 through 80.56, Wiener Neustadt 5613/1921 through 5632/1921); all remaining engines, including those built against Polish orders in 1922 and 1923 by Wiener Neustadt and StEG, corresponded to class 80.900. These locomotives were initially given numerical designations from 2001 onwards; in 1923, with new designation system introduced, all were classed Tw12. They were typically coupled with 16C11 tenders, sometimes also 14C11 or 17C11 – all three-axle tenders of Austrian origin. Among ‘Austrians’, with many classes numbering only few obsolete and untypical engines, Tw12s made up a numerous group; furthermore, they were comparatively modern. As with most engines of Austro-Hungarian origin, they served mainly in southern Poland, where their advantages – considerable tractive effort at moderate axle load and ability to negotiate tight curves – could be used to the full extent. Maximum speed of only 50 km/h was not a great disadvantage for such duties.

As with most other Polish engines, in September 1939 Tw12s fell into German and Soviet hands. DRG had a considerable number of 80s; some of them were impressed after Anschluss, other came from PKP, JDŽ or Soviet Union as a war booty (ČSD 524.0s were impressed into ČMDČeskomoravské protektorátni dráhy). All were classed 571-4, many receiving their numbers after old Saxon or Wirttembergian locomotives withdrawn in the 1920s or early1930s. Polish Tw12 were numbered 57 323 through 57 377 (singles) and 57 474 through 57 485 (compounds) – 67 examples in all, plus one (Tw12-140) that was not impressed into service and was written off in February 1940. Three engines (Tw12-7, Tw12-108 and Tw12-119) arrived in Hungary with evacuation trains and were later impressed into the MÁV service as 520.501 through 503; all were returned to PKP after the war. All remaining engines were taken by the Soviets, with the exception Tw12-38, Tw12-78 and Tw12-79 (their fate is not known). NKPS, Soviet ministry of transport before 1946, acquired also a number of Romanian class 50 machines, captured after the annexation of Bukovina in 1940. According to LOZD, many were converted to 1524 mm track, but it seems that most, if not all, remained in Moldavia and south-western Ukraine. Tw12s in the NKPS service retained their original numbers, written in Russian script. After 1941, 27 ex-PKP examples fell into German hands; they were numbered 57 394 through 57 400 (singles) and 57 498 through 57 500 (compounds – the last of them, ex-Tw12-23, StEG 4321/1919, was in fact erroneously classified as a compound!). Six were not impressed into DRG service, but passed over to CFR – after the war all were returned to the Soviet Union. In late 1944 and early 1945, eight more captured engines were numbered 57 651 through 658, but most of these numbers were assigned only formally.

Immediately after the war 23 examples were returned to PKP, but one of them, ex Tw12-65 (DRG 57 351) was not given new service number and was finally written off in 1952. Austrian state railways ÖBB took over fourteen ex-PKP Tw12s, but none was impressed into service. Four were promptly written off and nine were handed over to Soviet authorities, to be transferred to PKP almost immediately; all were assigned new service numbers. Ex Tw12-7 (then MÁV 520,001) was returned to Hungary in 1948 and handed over to PKP in 1953. State railways of Yugoslavia JDŽ took over four examples, classed 28; all were returned in 1949, but only three were impressed into service. Further ‘supplies’ came from Eastern Germany. DR took over ten ex-PKP Tw12s, of which seven were returned in 1950s, but only one saw some service. Czechoslovakian railways ČSD acquired six engines, which were returned and given new service numbers.

Apart from above-mentioned locomotives, PKP took over twenty DRG machines, ex-BBÖ ones – nine singles and eleven compounds. All came from a large group of German 57s leased to Hungarian railways MÁV during the war, to be returned in 1944. Two of them, 57 427 and 57 461, initially went to DR, but for some inexplicable reason were transferred to PKP in 1955 and 1956 in a very poor condition and scrapped. Of the remaining eighteen, three were not restored in service. Thus post-war class Tw12 numbered 59 examples. Most of them were withdrawn in late 1950s or 1960s; many (probably 26) went to various industrial establishments and enjoyed a few years’ lease of life. At least one Tw12 (number unknown) was used with an armored train, organized by SOK (Służba Ochrony Kolei – Railway Protection Service) in October 1946 and designated ‘No. 3’; later this train was named ‘Huragan’ (Hurricane). It participated in fighting against Ukrainian underground in south-eastern Poland until late 1948 and later was probably used for training. Few details of this interesting episode are known (armored trains in the SOK service survived probably until 1950s).

Tw12-12 (StEG 4423/1920, pre-war Tw12-49, ordered for kkStB as 80.3968, DRG 57 344), withdrawn from PKP service as the last Tw12 in 1967, has been preserved at the Chabówka railway stock heritage park on static display. Eight more can be seen in Europe, namely:

-        JDŽ 28-006 (ex 80.306, built against the SHS order), Wiener Neustadt 5740/1922 – plinthed in Divaca, Slovenia;

-        JDŽ 28-029 (ex 80.120), StEG 3814/1911 – railway museum, Lublana, Slovenia;

-        JDŽ 28-023 (ex 80.100), Wiener Neustadt 5036/1911 – Museo Ferroviario Campo Marzio, Trieste, Italy, with fictitious FS number 476.073;

-        JDŽ 28-053 (ex 80.179), Breitfeld-Daněk 37/1914 – property of the Lublana railway museum, plinthed in Knittelfeld, Austria;

-        ÖBB 57.223 (ex 80.988), Wiener Neustadt 5285/1916, Heizhaus Strasshof, Austria,

-        CFR 50.025, StEG 4482/1921 - Muzeum locomotivelor cu abur in aer liber, Resita, Romania;

-        CFR 50.065, StEG 4498/1921 – Oraviţa, Romania (for some time kept in working order);

-        OSE Kb 817, StEG 4607/1924 – Thessaloniki, Greece.


Main technical data







Years of manufacture


1909 – 1929


Total built / used in Poland


758 / 140 (591))


Tender class




Axle arrangement




Design maximum speed




Cylinder bore


2 x 590 (560 / 850)3)


Piston stroke




Engine rating


844 / 1148


Tractive effort


13 900 (13 300)3)


Boiler pressure




Grate dimensions

m x m

2.39 x 1.43


Firebox heating surface




Distance between tube plates


4 250


Number of flue tubes




Heating surface of flue tubes




Number of smoke tubes




Heating surface of smoke tubes




Evaporating surface, total




Superheater heating surface




Diameter of drivers




Diameter of idlers front/rear


- / -


Total weight, empty


63 500


Total weight, working order


69 400


Weight on drivers, working order


69 400


Weight with tender, empty


80 500


Weight with tender, working order


108 400


Maximum axle load




Axle base (with tender)


12 550


Overall length (with tender)


17 284


Brake type


vacuum, Westinghouse


1)      After WWII (plus twelve with no assigned service numbers).

2)      Typically; sometimes also 14C11 and 17C11 tenders.

3)      Data in brackets refer to the version with compound engine.


List of vehicles can be found here


References and acknowledgments


-        EZ, EDÖ, LP;

- (Ingo Hütter’s database);

- (website by Josef Pospichal);

-        Josef Pospichal (private communication – many thanks for detailed information on production and statistics!);

-        Triebfahrzeuge österreichischer Eisenbahnen: Dampflokomotiven BBÖ und ÖBB by Heribert Schröpfer (Alba, 2002).