Thu 17.09.2020

Superlative steam locomotive at the Technisches Museum Wien

It is the largest, heaviest, most powerful and fastest steam locomotive ever built in Austria. And it is now back at the Technisches Museum Wien (Vienna Museum of Science and Technology) – the extensively restored 12.10 steam locomotive. Next to the impressive original, an interactive video installation revives this legend of Austrian railway history.
It is the largest, heaviest, most powerful and fastest steam locomotive ever built in Austria. And it is now back at the Technisches Museum Wien (Vienna Museum of Science and Technology) – the extensively restored 12.10 steam locomotive. Next to the impressive original, an interactive video installation revives this legend of Austrian railway history.
 
The 12.10 was built in the Floridsdorf locomotive factory in 1936. The locomotive and its tender have a total length of 22.6 m and a combined weight of 138 tonnes. With its 2,700 hp, it could reach top speeds of 154 km/h – a record at that time!
 
Of the thirteen locomotives of the 214 series built between 1932 and 1936 in the Floridsdorf locomotive factory, only the number 10 has been preserved. This heavyweight is now displayed as a new highlight in the west hall of the Technisches Museum Wien.
 
The locomotive returns
 
To be able to restore the steel giant and take it into the museum, a lot of challenges had to be overcome. The combined weight of 138 tonnes of the locomotive and its tender makes it the heaviest object in the collection of the Technisches Museum Wien. The handling was entrusted to a specialised company that is experienced in moving such massive loads and specialises in handling rail vehicles.
Alongside many small components, the axles, weighing several tonnes, were removed for the restoration. 
The tender and the axles were the first parts to be brought into the museum, where they waited for the locomotive on the display track. The rest, weighing “only” eighty tonnes, was unloaded using a mobile crane and manoeuvred with millimetre precision through the entrance on heavy-duty castors. The locomotive and the axles were then re-joined, or married, as it is called, in the museum hall.
Front view of the elaborately restored 12.10 steam locomotive at the museum
© Technisches Museum Wien
Side view of the elaborately restored 12.10 steam locomotive at the museum
© Technisches Museum Wien
The steam engine of the 12.10 steam locomotive with the world’s longest connecting rod
© Technisches Museum Wien
View of the driver’s cabin of the 12.10 steam locomotive
© Technisches Museum Wien
A 90-square-metre projection of the steam locomotive at a scale of 1:1 that makes it possible to take a look inside the locomotive and explains the structure and function of individual areas.
© Technisches Museum Wien
A 90-square-metre projection of the steam locomotive at a scale of 1:1 that makes it possible to take a look inside the locomotive and explains the structure and function of individual areas.
© Technisches Museum Wien
A 90-square-metre projection of the steam locomotive at a scale of 1:1 that makes it possible to take a look inside the locomotive and explains the structure and function of individual areas.
© Technisches Museum Wien