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Carriages and wagons

Rumbo al Sud is a web magazine under the editorship of Señor Marcelo Arcas. It deals with the history of railways south of Buenos Aires. It includes a paper on the history of the coaches of the FC Sud from its inauguration until nacionalization. The FCS did not dedicate stock particularly to a single route, but nevertheless it helps in the understanding the variety of stock that may have been used on the Neuquén line. It can be found ( in Spanish of course) at <> (1). Link currently (January 2011) unavailable.

It is believed that the following five photos were taken by Mr. Coleman. They were found in his autobiography. (2)

First class coach no. 2601, mounted on six wheel bogies, and being used as an inspection saloon. One of three of this type built in 1924.


A livestock wagon of the usual Argentine type, with end doors so that the animals could walk on from an end ramp and fill the whole train in one operation.


In contrast is this view at Pichi-Mahuida of a double deck sheep wagon about to be loaded through the end door via a ramp. Date – early 1930s.


An open wagon, which would have been capable of carrying a maximum load of 45 tonnes, though when loaded with grain in sacks as here 33 tonnes would be a more likely maximum.

Baled alfalfa, presumably for livestock feed, being measured to ensure it was within the loading gauge.

Another photo of a loaded wagon. The method covers a wagon with three tarpaulins, arranged with the first two at the front protecting the load in the direction in which the train will proceed.


A view found in the Motherwell Heritage Centre of a petroleum tanker built by Hurst Nelson and Company of Motherwell in the 1920s for conveying oil from the oil fields of Neuquén. The board indicates that Livesey, Son and Henderson, the railway's London-based consulting engineers, were involved in its design, which can be recognised in the tank and its mounting, still evident today in some of Ferrosur Roca's tankers, and the characteristic axle box seen in close up further down the page.


The plate on the left hand mounting carries on two lines F. C. S. and the fleet number.

Screw couplings and side chains are provided, as is a continuous vacuum brake.

Only one side chain has a hook, the other has merely three links, thus ensuring that they are connected as required by the rules, see extract from the Southern's 1928 Rule Book, kindly provided by Señor Héctor Guerreiro of Bahía Blanca, below.

"Art. 234. Central threads and auxiliary chains.
C. The auxiliary chains should be linked through the third link. They only come in to use to serve for pulling should the central coupling break."

An FCS wagon axlebox cover, photographed in 2011.


In the early 1970s Marcelo Arcas snapped No 4200, the last of the class 11B 2-8-0s at Patagones, acting as station pilot with a four wheel shunters' truck. Note how the wagon has its sides boarded in to improve safety and comfort for those riding on it.


1 Los coches del Ferrocarril Sud. Marcelo Arcas. Rumbo al Sud (web magazine). <>. Link currently (January 2011) unavailable.
2 Construcción e Inauguración . . ., Chapter 2. Pages 233, 376, 366, 369 and 368 respectively. Mi Vida de Ferroviario Inglés en la Argentina 1887-1948. Arturo H. Coleman. 1949 Published privately.


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1 Itinerary of route

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3 Irrigation map

4 Rögind chapter 25

5 Rögind chapter 30

6 Rögind chapter 49

7 Rögind chapter 55

8 Rögind chapter 56A

9 Rögind chapter 56B

10 Coleman chapter 2

11 Coleman chapter 3

12 Coleman chapter 5

13 Map of FCS system

14 1955 public timetable

15 Modern photos

16 FCS rulebook extracts

17 Wagon diagrams

18 Press articles

19 Potash line decrees

20 Fruit train timetable

21 Trasandino decree

22 Automatic couplings

23 Railmotor specification

Chapter 3

The BAGSR's route to Neuquén


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