Tatra tower car

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The Tatra tower railcars (Czech: věžák ) were two-axle motorized railcars from the Czechoslovak manufacturer Tatra-Werke AG, automobile and wagon construction for the Czechoslovak State Railways (ČSD). As a characteristic feature, they had a central driver's cab in a pulpit on the vehicle roof.


The idea for building the tower railcars came from Hans Ledwinka , who at Tatra managed a whole team of automobile designers developing rail buses. This patent was used for the first time in 1928 for the construction of the freight railcars of the ČSD series M 140.1 . Between 1928 and 1937, a total of five other types for passenger traffic on branch lines were built, including a narrow-gauge version. The common feature of the vehicles was the engine installed in the center under the driver's cab and a mechanical gearbox from the automotive industry. The first vehicles were powered by gasoline engines; diesel engines were only used in the M 130.3 that was built last .

With the vehicles delivered in large numbers, the long-term replacement of the steam locomotive with more modern types of traction began in Czechoslovakia in the early 1930s. The higher speed of the railcars made it possible to consolidate the timetable on most branch lines and to set up new stops. After the Second World War , the vehicles were quickly replaced by the newly built railcars of the ČSD series M 131.1 . The last tower railcar was taken out of service around 1965.

The M 120.417 railcars of the National Technical Museum in Prague , the M 120.485 of the association společnost LOKO-MOTIV in Křimov , and the M 140.001 in the Bratislava Transport Museum have been preserved in the museum . The car body of the M 120.324 as well as some railway service vehicles converted from them are also among the surviving objects of this vehicle epoch.

Vehicle overview
ČSD series Years of construction Gauge number of pieces ČSD numbers Retirement comment
M 140.1 1928 1435 mm 3 M 140.101-103 1941 Freight railcars
M 120.3 1928-1930 1435 mm 27 M 120.301-327 1949 -
M 11.0 1928-1932 760 mm 9 M 11.001–009 1954 Narrow gauge version of the M 120.3 series
M 120.4 1930-1935 1435 mm 89 M 120.401-489 1965 -
M 130.2 1933-1937 1435 mm 63 M 130.201-263 1959 -
M 130.3 1933-1937 1435 mm 30th M 130.301-330 1950 with diesel engine

See also

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Vehicle list on the homepage of the association společnost LOKO-MOTIV