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The 4-8-4 type was known by a variety of names: the Greenbrier, Pocono, Niagara, Golden State, General Service, Dixie, Confederation, or Northern. Since the Northern Pacific railroad pioneered the use of this wheel arrangement as early as 1926, the name "Northern" is more commonly known. In the United States alone, more than 900 Northerns were built between 1926 and 1950.


Our Light Northern was developed to fill the need for a larger locomotive which was not as big and heavy or challenging to build as our ALCO Northern. The Little Engines Light Northern primarily used the Atlantic/Pacific family of casting but several cosmetic and trailing truck parts from the ALCO Northern and can be built with spoke wheels or box-poc type. While the style of the engine is basically a Southern Pacific design, a great many engines can be built with the running gear. We also offer an option Commonwealth or buckeye style three-axle tender trucks.


Engine Length

Tender Length



Weight (Engine Only)

Track Gauge

Bore & Stroke

Drive Wheel Diameter




Minimum Turning Radius

94 inches

66 inches

22 inches

15 1/2 inches

1,100 pounds

7 1/4 or 7 1/2 inches

2 1/2 x 3 1/2 inches

10 inches

1 3/8 inch diameter piston

Coal, Oil, or LPG

10 3/4 inch diameter

50 feet


Catalog Information

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