Ruston & Hornsby Class 88DS Hector

This 0-4-0 diesel mechanical loco built in 1955 as works number 382824 is named Hector and carries the number D2959 although not an ex – BR loco.  It was purchased privately from F.H Lloyd and Co. Birmingham in 1981.

The 88DS class first emerged from the Ruston works in 1942 and proved to be a versatile design, especially in view of the removable ballast that attach to the side frames and a chassis design adaptable to no less than eight gauge variants from 3’ to 5’6”. 254 examples were built in weights of 17 tons and 20 tons, 382824 being a 20 ton example.

Hector uses a starting system relying on compressed air, generated by a separate ‘jockey’ engine. Although this system does not suffer from battery failure, it can be a tricky business to start her and partially for that reason, although operational, she does not see much use these days.

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