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The Br 52 Kriegslok (War Transitional)

The Br 52 was a unique type of locomotive that came into existence because of German transportation needs during WWII.  Working under the constraints and economies of material and manpower shortages, the designers developed, step-by-step, a simplified configuration based broadly on the successful 2-10-0 Br 50 design.   

The Br 50 was comprised of about 6,000 separate parts this number was reduced to about 5000 for the Br 52 - and of these 5,000 parts, 3,000 were carefully designed for manufacturing simplicity. The Br50 frames were fabricated from 3 inch steel bar, while the Br52 frames were fabricated from approximately 1.17 inch steel plate.  It required 17,650 man hours to build a Br 50 while a Br 52 could be built in only 11,650 man hours. The weight of a completed Br52 and its Wannen, (bathtub), tender was 139 tons while the Br50 and tender weighed in at 165 tons.   

A total of 15,000 Br 52s were ordered and it was planned to manufacture 500 of them per month utilizing 15 separate construction locations.  In reality, the production rate of 500 per month was only achieved for three months during 1943.  About 6,000 Br 52s were manufactured during the war but the design was so successful that several hundred more were constructed after the cessation of hostilities, representing the largest production run in German railway history. This is a remarkable fact since the locomotive was originally expected to have an economically useful lifetime of only about five years!   

In reality, some Br 52s operated, unaltered, for as long as 40 years - a real tribute to the soundness of the basic design and the skill of the designers.  Br 52s were the backbone of the reconstruction of post-war Germany and faithfully served the railway administrations of several countries. Approximately two hundred Br52s have been preserved and are in museums, private collections or are on display as monuments.  

Aster has chosen to model three Br 52 liveries in Gauge 1:  

  • Br 52 1325 of the Deutsche Reichsbahn as built by DWM in Posen.  Today it is preserved in Brandenburg and renumbered as 8129.
  • Br 52 3322 built after the war by Jung locomotive works and remained in service until 1961 with Deutsche Bundesbahn.
  • Br 52 2347 built at the beginning of 1943 by Henschel in Kassel, fitted with a chimney cap for frost protection but without Witte smoke deflectors, painted in war gray livery.  She remained in service in the USSR until scrapped in 1948.





Scale/Gauge:                  1/32, 45 mm (No.1 Gauge)


Weight:                        6.6kg. (Engine 4.7kg. + Tender 1.9kg.)



    Length O.B:                 739.4 mm

    Height :                        138.3 mm

    Width:                             98 mm


Wheel Arrangement:    2 - 10 - 0

    Driving Wheels:        Dia. 43.6 mmSpoked Wheels

    Pilot Truck Wheels:  Dia.26 mm, Disc Type

    Tender Wheels :       Dia.26 mm, Disc Type


Engine:                           2 cylinders, Bore 13 mm x Stroke 20 mm

Valve gears:                  Walschaert (Reverse Lever)


Boiler Type:                  C Type

    Water capacity:        300 cc

    Pressure:                  3.5 kg/cm2


               Fittings:                     2 x safety valves, Regulator Valve, Blower Valve,

                           Water Check Valve, Pressure Gauge, Water Gauge.

                           By-Pass Valve


Feed Water Pump:     Axle Driven Pump mounted on the main driver.

                          (bore 5 mm x ram stroke 5 mm).


Lubricator:                   Roscoe displacement type


Bath-Tub Tender:      Water Capacity:280 cc at 80% Full with a hand operation pump mounted


Fuel Tank:                   180 cc at 80% full of methylated alcohol


Minimum Radius:        2 meters (3 meters is better)


Coupler :                 European Hook Coupler


Specifications subject change with or without notice.  




Click to watch You Tube Video by Klaus Lytzhft


Additional Pictures of the BR 52




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