H class diesel electric locomotives

ABOVE: H 1 at Sth Dynon, Jan 24 1981.

The five H class were added onto the final T class order. Changes made from a standard T class included extra weight added to the frame and the fitting of "manual power control" which allowed low speeds to be set very precisely. Their purpose was to push rakes of wagons up to the summit of the Melbourne hump. They were also fitted with hump cab signals and a special, very accurate speedometer.The H's rarely strayed far from Melbourne and their hump duties, technically there was always one spare as the hump was operated with sets of a pair of H's coupled together. Because of their high axle load ( 20.3 tonnes, heavier than an S or X) they were quite restricted as to the lines they could operate over. By the time that the hump closed in the early 1990's most Victorian tracks had been upgraded for G class operation so the H's operated system wide.The H's were delivered as T 413 - T417 but were quickly reclassified and renumbered to H 1 - H 5. T 413 and T 414 were delivered with T class number plates, T 415 - T417 were delivered only with T class illuminated number boards. All of the H's were built at Clyde's Granville N.S.W. plant

ABOVE: H 1 as delivered as T 413. BELOW: Just after renumbering. Both, official VR photos

Road # Serial #
In service
Withdrawn Service life Disposition Color schemes Notes
H 1 68-629
to FV vrb - vlo - fag delivered as T413
H 2 69-630
to FV vrb - vlo - fag delivered as T414
H 3 69-631
to FV vrb - vlo - fag delivered as T415
H 4 69-632
to FV vrb - vlo - fag delivered as T416
H 5 69-633
to FV vrb - vlo - fag delivered as T417


ABOVE: H 2 at Sth Dynon, Oct 10 1981.

ABOVE: A pair of H's pushing a rake over the hump.  Both H's were normally facing the hump as shown here, photo circa 1980, courtesy Tony Tuchio.

Over the years the H's have recieved a few modifications as seen on H 3. The special hump aerials have been removed, extra step and handrail near the handbrake and air conditioning. Photo at Sth Dynon Dec. 2003.

ABOVE & BELOW, H1 in the PacNat scheme, Sth Dynon March 17 2007.(photo courtesy Daniel McKee)