Joy and glee - although it´s not Christmas Eve yet!
What happened? Well, this German got a neat Christmas bonus. He squandered some on presents for his girlfriend and family - and still had some money left over. Enough to make that dream come true - a Gützold class 18.0!
The original engine has been cnceived during WW1, as the Royal Saxonian State Railways lacked a modern passenger engine that could fulfil the comprehensive needs that arose in the 1910s. Their older engines were mainly elderly (yet beautful!) Atlantics (4-4-2s). This was not enough motive power to pull the modern, heavier trains. At first, Saxony thought it a good idea to introduce tha Bavarian S3/6 engines. They borrowed one from Maffei for test purposes in the winter of 1915/16, stationed them in Reichenbach/Vogtland, and the engine made an outstanding performance in Saxony. However, problems arose, as Maffei wanted to build the engines themselves, and Saxony wanted to license them from Maffei and have them built in their own region, preferrably by Hartmann in Chemnitz/Saxony. So, the Saxonian Railways had to dream up a new plan. This plan consisted of building not one new engine for their express trains, but two: the class 19.0 Mikado engine for the rolling country, and the class 18.0 for the level terrain, mainly the Dresden-Berlin and Leipzig-Berlin routes. Both were commonly referred to as "Sachsenstolz", or "Pride of Saxony".
The 18.0 is a "blend" between an S3/6 engine and a K.P.E.V. S10. - The drivetrain was basically derived from the S3/6, but with only three cylinders akin to the S 10 instead of the S3/6´s four.
The 18.0, or formerly the XVIII H in Saxonian denomination, was stationed in Dresden-Altstadt and performed well on its duties. The only problems arose from its lightweight construction, which limited the weight it pulled in adverse weather or topographical situations. The express trains were taken over by 01 and 03 engines in the late 1930s and 1940s, hence the 18.0 was relegated from express train duies to regional train - for these services, a bell was added right befor the smokestack. The original engines were built without smoke deflectors; these were added by the Deutsche reichsbahn, as was electrical illumination rather than petroleum headlights.
One engine was destroyed in the 1945 bombing raid on Dresden, and one was damaged during that raid to be taken out of service in 1951. This engine provided spare parts for the remaining eight engines, which lasted until 1967/1968.
The model was introduced by Gützold in 2006; to the best of my knowledge, this engine has never been done as a model before save for limited brass editions. It is mostly made of metal, with some plastic add-on parts.
There are several add-on parts to be fitted (as seen below); however, I have decided not to fit them all just yet, as I´d like to see how well it runs without these parts (mainly the piston rods). Minimum radius is rated at 415 millimeters.
The engines drivetrain is articulated to allow the model to handle these curves. the articulation is not visible and only noticable when the model is turned upside down - when you move the trailing wheel to the right, the driving wheels move leftward and vice versa.
It has tender-drive, with no cardan powering the locomotive. The locomotive, however, is utilized to pick up current from its wheels. These are made of metal and have an RP25 profile.
Here are some detail shots - note the curtains on the rear wall of the driver´s cab!
The engine comes in a sturdy styrofoam box, with instructions and add-on parts (these also feature the trailing wheels´ brakes, which I´ve also chosen not to mount just yet).
This is one of my best, if not the
best (along with the Brawa G4/5H) engine I have ever had. very smooth and nearly silent running, even during break-in. extremely detailled, yet sturdy. It is hardly - if at all - noticeable which parts are plastic and which are metal. The third cylinder is visible above the front bogie, underneath the boiler. The front walkway is etched brass. LED illumination.
Order number is 51100, Ep. III version ist the only one available, list price EUR 377,--, got mine for EUR 335,--. Am broke now, will accept donations...