Electric Locomotive Double Set with the SJ Da 903 and the SBB Ce 6/8 III 14305 "Crocodile"
The big anniversary event on September 12/13, 2015 in the Swedish town of Gävle for the 100th anniversary of electric main line operation in Sweden offers the unusual meeting of two cult locomotives. The section of the Swedish ore line between Kiruna and Riksgränsen was finally under wire as early as 1915. The railroad museum in Gävle has a multitude of mostly Swedish electric locomotives as a rendezvous for this anniversary. The visit of the SBB Historic Swiss Crocodile Ce 6/8 III 14305 forms a special high point for this. The locomotive is being transferred from Olten (Switzerland) via Rostock (Germany) and Trelleborg (Sweden) to the Swedish town of Ängelholm. From there it will run on September 6/7 under its own power with special trains to Gävle. A special run from Stockholm to Gävle follows on the anniversary on Saturday. The trip back to Switzerland begins on September 15/16 also with special trains from Stockholm via Malmö to Ängelholm. At the anniversary in Gävle, the "Crocodile" will also meet up with the Swedish side road locomotive Da 903, also viewed as a cult locomotive. The latter was specially painted in fir green for Märklin and thereby corresponds to the paint scheme for the legendary historic Märklin model 3019.
Road number Ce 6/8 III 14305 comes from the second series of the Gotthard freight locomotives, because constantly increasing freight service had caused the SBB to order another 18 "Crocodiles" in 1926/27 as road numbers Ce 6/8III 14301-14318. They had greater performance with 1,809 instead of 1,647 kilowatts / 2,426 instead of 2,209 horsepower and their power trucks now had Winterthur diagonal rod drive by means of an intermediate jackshaft. In the mid-Fifties, their maximum speed could be lifted from 65 to 75 km/h / 41 to 47 mph and they were consequently thus changed in designation to Be 6/8III 13301-13318.
The Swedish class Da side rod locomotives are newer units. Due to the increasing need for electric locomotives arising from further electrification of rail lines, the SJ at the end of the Forties urgently needed additional locomotives. The SJ thus decided to revive the proven class D as a side rod driven electric locomotive with the wheel arrangement 2-6-2 even though it had been technically surpassed by that time. The basic superstructure of the new class "Da" was the same as its predecessors: The locomotive was powered by two single-phase series-wound motors that transmitted their power by means of a gear case to the jackshaft between the three driving wheel sets. The latter were connected by means of side rods to the powered jackshaft. The driving wheel sets, bearings, and the traction motors were newly designed. The windows now equipped with rubber seals now gave a modern look. Ninety-three (93) units were built by ASEA between 1953 and 1960. In the late Eighties, the SJ began to draw these locomotives from service, and by the mid Nineties, all of them were scrapped except for a few exceptions. Several units have survived in museums as well as on privately owned railroads.