TKi3-26, preserved at the former loco depot in Jaworzyna Śląska, was the last to be withdrawn from service; photo taken on August 4, 2004




The same engine, photographed on October 28, 2005




TKi3-119 at the Railway Museum in Warsaw, photo taken on May 19, 2001.




Another picture of TKi3-119, taken on September 5, 2006...




... and yet another (May 25, 2005); note makeshift coal box extension.





KPEV Osten 7336, then DRG 91 1790 and finally TKi3-120, in Ostrów Wielkopolski; photo taken on November 26, 2003




Earlier photo of TKi3-120, taken on October 8, 2001...




...and the same example, externally refurbished; June 7, 2006.




DRG 91 896 (Jung 1738/1912) plinthed in Dresden, Germany; photo taken on July 10, 2004. Delivered to KPEV as Frankfurt 7394, this engine was taken over by PKP and re-numbered TKi3-295. In 2009 it was transferred to Sächsisches Eisenbahnmuseum, Chemnitz-Hilbersdorf.



Earlier photo of this engine, taken in Torgau, Germany, on September 14, 1975. From my collection.




Poor, but very interesting photo of TT-1388, ex-DRG 91 1388 (Hohenzollern 2671/1909), somewhere in Russia. Source: - if you know the author or any details, please contact me.




Class 913-18,20 side drawing from TB vol.2




TKi3-137 (Union 1751/1909), awaiting reconstruction at the Skierniewice depot; photo taken on August 6, 2005




Another picture of TKi3-137, taken on September 17, 2006: reconstruction in progress...




... and boiler from TKi3-232, photographed on the same occasion.




TKi3-164, location unknown, August 1959. Photo from my collection.




Tki3-112 on display at the Deutsches Technikmuseum, Berlin. Photo taken on May 16, 2009.




Yet another picture of the Tki3-26, taken on July 8, 2009.



DRG 91 848 (Henschel 10499/1911) began its life as KPEV Breslau 7389 and later became TKi3-279. Returned after the war, it was re-numbered TKi3-175 and transferred to industry in 1955. This photo was taken during the war between Kraków and Zakopane. From my collection.



TKi3-87 (ex KPEV Osten 7247, then DRG 91 1041, Union 1652/1908), location and date unknown. This locomotive was withdrawn in August 1964 and sold to industry. For a few years it ran with special trains; currently on display in Jarocin. Photo from my collection.




Prussian locomotives T91 (later DRG 900-2) and T92 (DRG 910-1), although built in fairly large numbers, were not entirely satisfactory. They were the first Prussian tank locomotives with three driven axles and one idle axle, intended mainly for local freight and mixed traffic. However, with either rear (T91) or front (T92) Adams idle axe their running qualities left something to be desired, even at comparatively low speeds for which they had been designed. Introduction of the Krauss-Helmholtz lead truck solved this problem; there were also minor improvements concerning boiler, water-boxes and other elements. New engine, designated class T93, proved very successful and became one of the most popular and numerous Prussian locomotives. First twenty examples were supplied by Union-Gießerei and Schichau in 1901; until 1914, 2058 machines were built for Prussian railways (according to TB; various sources give 2055 to 2060), plus 133 for state railways in Alsace-Lorraine (then part of German Reich) and 23 for various other operators – 2214 examples in all.

After 1918, German railways were left with 1503 ex-Prussian locomotives, designated class 913-18 and given service numbers 91 303 through 91 1805. Ten machines from Württembergische Staatseisenbahn (supplied by Esslingen between 1906 and 1907 and designated T9 with that service) became class 9120, service numbers 91 2001 through 2010; they differed mainly in having 203 smoke tubes and boiler pressure increased to 13 bar. Many were withdrawn from DRG service in early 1930s, but in 1935 further 31 machines, formerly used by Saarbahnen, were impressed as 91 1806 through 91 1836. Finally, eight ex-Belgian engines (SNCB class 93), captured in 1940, became 91 1837 through 91 1844. DRG numbers 91 1845 through 91 1847 were given to engines from Lithuania, Belgium and Soviet Union and formally assigned after 1945. These locomotives remained in use with DB until 1964, with DR for almost seven years longer.

The rest of T93s were scattered between several European railways. They served in Belgium (SNCB class 93, until 1963), France (both ex-ELB and obtained directly from KPEV), Luxembourg (second-hand from France), Romania (until 1973), Lithuania, Latvia (LDZ class Tn, which included also ex-Prussian classes T91 and T7) and Yugoslavia. Most of them, however – 320 – went to Poland, where they were designated TKi3. From this number, ten were used in Gdańsk, with service numbers from 1Dz to 10Dz (Dz for ‘Danzig’); the rest had standard PKP service numbers, TKi3-1 through TKi3-310. In late 1930s five more were transferred to Gdańsk and re-numbered TKi3-11Dz through TKi3-15Dz. It was intended to withdraw all machines running on saturated steam in the 1930s, but TKi3s were very useful with local trains, on sidings and for switching. They were capable of attaining 65 km/h with a 500-tonne draft and tractive effort was enough for much heavier drafts at low speed. Despite their obsolescence, only three were written off before 1939.

Data on subsequent wartime fates of individual engines given by various sources reveal some discrepancies. According to the monographic article by Ryszard Stankiewicz (KMD  vol. 1-2/2011), after the September campaign, 256 locomotives of this type fell into German hands, including one already withdrawn, and were impressed into service with either DRG  or Ostbahn – with the latter operator, Polish service numbers being temporarily retained. Contrary to ex-Belgian engines, those taken over by DRG were assigned service numbers of previously withdrawn examples. Four were later captured by the Soviets. Forty-nine (including one withdrawn in 1938) went to NKPS, but twenty-five also became German war booty after Fall Barbarossa.  This number does not include ten engines handed over to Lithuanian authorities and numbered 716 through 725 in the LG service, to be taken back after the annexation of the Baltic states a few months later – of these, eight eventually ended up with DRG. According to the above-mentioned source, three TKi3s with evacuation trains entered Latvia and became Tn201, Tn202 and Tn204; all these numbers were used for the second time. The fate of the TKi3-93 is obscure: it probably also went to LG (having been evacuated from Poland?), but no further details are known.

Soviet engines of this type initially retained their Polish designations, written in Russian script. After the war some were classed TT, while the others retained their German service numbers preceded by the letter T: in both cases the first T stood for ‘trofyeinyi’, or booty. They were used mainly for switching. T91 581 (ex TKi3-154) was fitted with piston valves, but no details on this conversion are known to me. TT-0397 (Jung 576/1902) and TT-1770 (Jung 1935/1913) can now be seen at the Russian railway museum in Shushary near St.Petersburg.

After WWII PKP obtained 247 locomotives of this type, of which 134 were pre-war Polish TKi3s. Of these, 236 were given PKP service numbers, but not all of them were restored in service. Four were scrapped almost immediately on arrival and some went directly to industry. In 1947 PKP rosters listed 213 examples and their number dwindled rapidly, due to poor condition and obsolescence. Just like before the war, it was decided to withdraw all machines running on saturated steam with slide valves pretty soon, but these plans had to be verified due to delays in electrification and supply of diesel locomotives. However, 48 examples were written off before 1955. The last one, TKi3-170, was withdrawn from the PKP service in January 1969. Two engines of this type (TKi3-17 and TKi3-106) were converted to oil firing in 1953 and leased to military railways; both were withdrawn from use probably in 1965. As TKi3s were very useful and reliable, many of them avoided scrapping and were transferred to various industrial establishments, where some survived until late 1970s. The last one remained in use at the railway stock repair works at Oleśnica until 1982.

After WWII, several ex-German machines were also used by Austrian and Italian railways. Twenty machines taken over by Czechoslovak authorities and designated class 335.1 remained in use just until 1949, later returning to Germany or Poland (ex-Polish TKi3s – probably seven examples).

Large number of TKi3s – 59 machines – were converted into fireless locos between 1951 and 1959. Designated TKi3b (b for ‘bezogniowy’ – fireless), they remained in service for much longer than the original version. TKi3b shall be described under a separate entry. It seems, however, that no data has survived that could allow for determining which TKi3 became which TKi3b.

Five TKi3s have survived in Poland until today, namely:

-        TKi3-26 (Hohenzollern 1593/1903, KPEV Elberfeld 2118, DRG 91 449), withdrawn from PKP use in 1955, then used by railway stock repair works in Oleśnica until 1982 to become the last TKi3 in active service, can be seen at the former loco depot in Jaworzyna Śląska (now Museum of Railways and Industry). It had been intended to keep this engine in working order, but after just a few rides with special trains for foreign steam enthusiasts it was withdrawn after boiler ticket expiry in 1985 and never ran again.

-        TKi3-87 (Union 1652/1908, KPEV Posen 7247, DRG 91 1041), withdrawn from PKP service in 1964 and then used by a food industry plant, was reconstructed in 1995 and for some time remained operational at the Wolsztyn locomotive depot, being the oldest machine preserved there and the oldest operational steam engine in Poland at that time. After boiler ticket expired in June 2001, it was transferred to the Gniezno repair works. Initial plans to restore this engine in service, however, never saw fruition. When the Gniezno works ultimately withdrew from the steam locomotive business in late 2009, TKi3-87 was transferred to Jarocin in April 2010 and shall most probably remain there on static display.

-        TKi3-119 (Union 2049/1913, KPEV Posen 7326, DRG 91 1696), transferred from PKP to the Huta Warszawa foundry in 1957 and withdrawn from servive in 1973, is now on display at the Railway Museum in Warsaw.

-        TKi3-120 (Union 2110/1914, KPEV Osten 7336, DRG 91 1790), withdrawn in 1966, is plinthed in Ostrów Wielkopolski.

-        TKi3-137 (Union 1751/1909, KPEV Danzig 7382, pre-war TKi3-228, then DRG 91 719, second with this service number), withdrawn in 1950 and transferred to a sugar plant in Rejowiec, is preserved by PSMK railway fan society at Skierniewice loco depot (currently not on display – awaiting reconstruction).

Furthermore, TKi3-112 (Hohenzollern 1592/1903) is currently displayed at the Deutsches Techniksmuseum (formerly Museum für Verkehr und Technik), Berlin. Polish designation has been retained. This machine has had a colorful history. Impressed into the KPEV service as Frankfurt 7265, it became TKi3-2 in 1923. Before 1939 it was transferred to industry and re-numbered 8002. Captured by Germans, it was taken over by DRG as 91 936 and returned to PKP in 1945. Nine years later it went to industry again and, after final withdrawal, was eventually sold to Germany in January 1986.

TKi3 was not a particularly beautiful machine, but proved very successful and remained in service for about seventy years. It was one of the most widely used locomotives in Europe and certainly should be regarded a classic design.


Main technical data







Years of manufacture


1901 – 1914


Total built / used in Poland


22141) / 3202) – 2473)


Tender class




Axle arrangement




Design maximum speed




Cylinder bore


2 X 450


Piston stroke




Engine rating


 460 / 625


Tractive effort


 8 900


Boiler pressure




Grate dimensions

m X m

1.55 X 0.99


Firebox heating surface




Distance between tube plates


3 700


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


1000 / -


Total weight, empty


46 780


Total weight, working order


59 900


Weight on drivers, working order


45 000


Weight with tender, empty




Weight with tender, working order




Maximum axle load




Axle base (with tender)


6 000


Overall length (with tender)


10 700


Brake type


Westinghouse, Knorr


1)      Including 2058 for KPEV, 133 for state railways in Alsace-Lorraine and 23 for other operators

2)      Including ten examples used in Gdańsk

3)      After WWII.

4)      Some sources give 107.3 m2


References and acknowledgments


- (website maintained by ‘Doctor’),

-       monographic article by Paweł Terczyński (SK vol. 2/1995),

-       monographic article by Ryszard Stankiewicz (KMD vol. 1-2/2011),

-       Ingo Hütter’s locomotive database (,

- (website by Tomisław Czarnecki),

-       TB vol. 2, LHR, LP.