Northern Maryland’s Baldwin Moguls

Through the last quarter of the 19th century, the Northern Maryland freight revenues increased. Inbound coal, both anthracite for home heating and bituminous coal used by the railroad and online businesses were a major part of the increase. Slate products from northern Hartford county and wood to and from the various mill were also major online freight products. Moving agricultural products, the reason the railroad was built always brought money to the balance sheet. To move all of this, the railroad relied heavily on its three Moguls. At times, they even were used in passenger service to cover for one of the two Americans. The addition of the ten-wheelers in the late 1880s caused a reshuffling of motive power with the Americans only handling the Westminster to Manchester passenger and freight service. One mogul worked the Manchester to Hanover turn, one handled the Manchester to Bel Air turn, and one handled the Manchester to Parkton turn. By 1914, the Manchester to Parkton turn had become a mixed train following the Hanover to Parkton morning passenger train. The mixed ran six days weekly except Sundays. The freight varied daily, but the combine and L.C.L boxcar were always part of the train.

In 1914, both second number one, a Baldwin 8-22D, and the rebuilt Cooke Mogul were used on the Parkton Branch mixed. Let’s take a look at a similar prototype and potential models for the Baldwin Mogul.

I have always liked the rebuilt Nevada County Narrow Gauge Mogul #5, featured on the dust jacket of Gerald M. Best’s Nevada County Narrow Gauge. I have always liked John Hugh Coker print and use it as the prototype of the Northern Maryland’s mixed train that served Beckleysville. The engine is currently preserved at the Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad museum, which you can visit online here. The museum has a brief history of the engine’s long and storied work life. As for models of this little engine, I am not as fortunate. I could only find that it was made in On3 by Iron Horse Models. Here is a photograph of the model on the website. I have never been able to find this model though or I would have considered building Beckleysville in O scale. Fortunately, Railmaster Exports has a generic Baldwin 8-20/22D kit which I purchased with some extra parts to create a similar version of the rebuilt “5”.

Before I go any further, an explanation of Baldwin Locomotive Companies unique classification system. I found an excellent explanation at the SOuthern Methodist University’s Degolyer Library. If you are interested in learning more, go to this website. Below is a section that I accessed to make it easy to understand.

Baldwin Class Numbers:The Baldwin Class number was a rather complicated classification system initiated in 1842 and used until some time around 1940. For example, The class number for the Nevada-California-Oregon Railway can be described in the following manner.

  • 10-24 D 35
  • 35 = Indicates the 35th locomotive in the class.
  • D = 3 pairs of driving wheels
  • 24 = Number representing size of cylinder
  • 10 = Indicates a total of 10 wheels

a. The initial number is the total number of wheels of all kinds under the locomotive. The second number indicates the cylinder diameter in inches, the cylinder diameter being obtained by dividing the classification number by 2 and adding 3 to the quotient. The above classification number of 24 indicates a cylinder diameter of (24 ÷ 2) + 3 = 15.

  • A fraction, 42/68 indicates a compound locomotive having two sizes of cylinders.

c. The letter designation indicates the number of pairs of coupled driving wheels.

  • “A” = special class of high speed geared locomotive with one pair of driving wheels. Also rack railroad locomotives.
  • “B” = one pair of driving wheels.
  • “C” = two pairs of coupled driving wheels.
  • “D” = three pairs of coupled driving wheels.
  • “E” = f our pairs of coupled driving wheels.
  • “F” = five pairs of coupled driving wheels.
  • Double letters = articulated locomotives having more than one set of coupled driving wheels.

Now if I use the Baldwin classification system correctly, the NCNG 5 has cylinder size of 13×16 inches. This makes it an 8-20D. It has smaller cylinders than my Railmaster Export models, but I can live with that difference of 2 inches.

Next post, I want to spend some time discussing the Northern Maryland’s lone non-Baldwin engine, a Cooke Mogul.

Northern Maryland’s Baldwin Moguls

Picture of a finished Railmaster Export 8-22D kit attached to my box.

Northern Maryland’s Baldwin Moguls @February 2021

By: H. Mathews

Barriers to Model Railroading: Applying past lessons learned

Why, you ask, are lessons learned barriers to Model Railroading? When you do not take what you have learned and apply it forward to the next project.

I will start with an example of my own. The lesson is using a mock up. How many have taken a plan, whether your own or one you found and rushed in to build the next model railroad only to discover, that isn’t going to work out like you thought it would.

Last year while sorting papers, I came across my original plan for Beckleysville. My first thought was how did I get from this simple plan to the grand designs I finished with for the O scale narrow gauge version. So I went to work over the past month and recreated the plan in a 12 inch= 1 foot environment and discovered that yes, this plan while hitting all the must haves out of the park, was still not a very good plan. The issue that was forgotten was to give the feeling of a small terminal not something so cramped in its environs that it became a switching nightmare. Well let me restate that, it became an un-prototypical switching arrangement. Freelancing is fine, but I wanted to stay with commonly accepted railroad practices from the early 20th century. A mock-up helped me to discover that the combine would always be in the way and need to be constantly moved to switch or just not sit within the platform area. Now certainly the train could have sat while the combine was unloaded and then again at departure time. This did and still does seem reasonable to me but I really wondered if that would have been “the norm” in 1914. The station siding was also very short and would make trim lengths limited to one car and the combine. Again, that may have been acceptable for the volume of freight traffic, but two cars would have made it more like a switching puzzle.

The original Beckleysville plan
Beckleysville laid out
Station area

The station area was in particular too compact even for a small narrow gauge terminal. I have two of the original C modules from the O scale version and could lay out the trackplan, if only lines and switch templates, to see how everything looked. The two modules together are a little over 8 feet (about 2 1/2 meters) in length. I feel that an additional module, making the layout about 12 feet in length, minus its staging section, a better choice.

Thankfully, overcoming a barrier in Model Railroading and applying the idea of making a mock-up instead of forging ahead and building from the plan saved another false start from occurring.

Fine for one freight car and a Combine. Not much room for more.

Barriers to Model Railroading: Applying past lessons learned @January 2021

By: H Mathews