JNR Class C60

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The Japanese C60 class of 4-6-4 Hudson wheel arrangement steam locomotives was born from the rebuilding of 47 surplus C59 class 4-6-2 Pacific locomotives between 1953 and 1961 at the JNR Hamamatsu and Kōriyama factories. 39 locos were rebuilt from pre-war C59s, while 8 were rebuilt from post-war variants and renumbered C60 101 to 108. (See table below)With the spread of electrification, lower axle loads and greater versatility had become more important requirements than shear pulling power, and so an additional trailing axle was included to reduce the heavy axle load of the C59 and allow more widespread use.

The class was most active on local and express passenger services in the Tōhoku and Kyūshū regions, and locos were to be seen operating in multiple (double- and even triple-headers) with C61s and D51s on both passenger and freight workings north of Morioka on the Tōhoku Main Line.

The class survived until 1971. Only one C60 is preserved: C60 1 in a park in Sendai.


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In N gauge, Micro Ace produced two examples of the C60 in 1998: Tōhoku-style C60-7 (A9604) and C60-101 (A9603). The current Kato catalogue indicates that an N-gauge model of the C60 is planned for sometime in the future.

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