Sri Lanka Railways W1

The Sri Lanka Railways Class W1 is a class of Sri Lankan diesel hydraulic locomotive that was built by Rheinstahl Henschel in 1969. A total of 45 W1s were built and imported. This is the first diesel-hydraulic locomotive which ran on Sri Lankan rail.

Sri Lanka Railways Class W1
Class W1 No. 663
Type and origin
Power typeDiesel
BuilderRheinstahl Henschel
ModelDHG-1200 [1]
Build date1969
Total produced45
RebuilderSri Lanka Railways
Gauge1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in)
Length12.8 metres (41 ft 11 78 in)[2]
Loco weight60.5 t (59.5 long tons; 66.7 short tons)
Prime moverPaxman 12YJXL[1]
RPM range1500
Engine typeV12 4 stroke diesel[1]
TransmissionVoith L 520 R U2 [3]
Train brakesVacuum
Performance figures
Maximum speed80 km/h (50 mph)
Power output1,150 hp (860 kW)
OperatorsSri Lanka Railways
Number in class45
LocaleSri Lanka
10 locomotives from W1 class were later fitted with new engines and renumbered as W3 class.


The history of W1 begins in 1969. 45 of W1s were imported to Sri Lanka which made W1 the most numerous class of SLR locomotives that time. At that time only Class M1 and Class M2 locomotives were in operation. Most of other services were carried out by steam locomotives. But with the introduction of W1s most of steam locomotives were taken out of service and those services were taken by W1. This locomotive has used for SLR's famous Udarata Menike train for about 25 years. Also this locomotive can be operated on any of railway lines in Sri Lanka.[2]


By 90's most of W1s were out of service all because of problems in the prime-mover and some due to serious accident damages. These condemned locomotives were scrapped.[2]

In Service

With declination of W1s 2 locomotives (650 & 657) were fitted with new Paxman VEGA SE/RP 160[1] prime movers of power 1250 HP. By 2011 only 2 of them were in running condition. Those were used in light duties. By 2012 none of W1s were in operation

Class W3

Sri Lanka Railways Class W3
W3 No. 673
Type and origin
Power typeDiesel
ModelDH3 1200
RebuilderSri Lanka Railways, Adtranz
Rebuild date1997
Number rebuilt10
Gauge1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in)
Prime moverCatepillar 3512 DI-TA [2]
TransmissionVoith L 520 R U2
MU workingYes
Loco brakeAir, Hydro-Dynamic
Train brakesAir, Vacuum
Performance figures
Power output1,200 hp (890 kW)
No. 631, 636, 638, 647, 659, 665, 666, 667, 669 and 673 W1 locomotives were reclassified as W3.

In 1997, 10 Class W1 locomotives were extensively refurbished. SLR and Adtranz involved in this. During these refurbishment the locomotives were fitted with new power plants, power transmission systems and electronic engine control systems. As well as a full new repaint of Blue and Silver was undertaken.

After the extensive refurbishment, the locomotives were reclassified as the W3-class.

See also


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