Co-Co Diesel Electric
These 16 locomotives were built in Belgium by Cockerill in 1983 and are numbered 601-616. They were purchased to be used for long distance freights. At 1800 hp they are a fairly big unit for metre gauge. It would be fascinating to find out why Belgium was chosen as the supplier. I guess Vietnam and China were at war at the time, so Vietnam's logical supplier was not 'available'. This didn't stop Vietnam from ordering D14E , D19E and D19Er class locomotives later on. Even so, Belgium is hardly known for it's locomotive building prowess. And no more units were ever purchased from this manufacturer. There's got to be a story there somewhere.
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Steam Locomotives generally used the traditional French classification system. A steam locomotive with a 2-8-2 wheel arrangement is classified as 141 class, a locomotive with 4-6-2 wheel arrangement is classified as 231 class etc. Pretty straight forward, except what they did if two classes had a 2-8-2 wheel arrangement I'm not sure. It didn't happen so wasn't a problem?
Diesel locomotives have a completely dfferent clasification system.
All diesel classes start with the letter 'D' (for diesel?) then a number which I believe is related to the locomotives power output. The third character defines Electric' (E) or hydraulic (H).
e.g. D5H class = Diesel + 500 hp + hydraulic.
Again, what happens if two classes are the same I don't know.
I am still investigating pre 1975 classifications. Some are the same e.g. 141 steam class, and some are different e.g. 'BB' class instead of D9E.
Railways in Vietnam
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