28 Gladstone Street, Feilding New Zealand
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secretary@steamrail.org.nz

Wab794 – To FDSRS

Wab794 – To FDSRS

The Feilding and District Steam Rail Society was formed with the intention of rebuilding a steam locomotive. After a few months of negotiation we leased Wab794 from the New Zealand Railway and Locomotive Society. In January 1997 the Wab was inspected at Ferrymead and had servicing done to allow it to be towed to the North Island. The Wab was towed to Picton as part of a standard freight service, and crossed the Cook Straight on Thursday 20 Feb 1997. The Wab was towed to Palmerston North a few days later then it was stored in Palmerston North for a few weeks. The Wab was accompanied for all its journeys to keep a look out for hot bearings and other mechanical troubles.

On Saturday 22nd March 1997 Wab794 was officially delivered to Feilding by F163 (a steam locomotive) from Palmerston North with some assistance from electric locomotive 30232.

The Wab was greeted by hundreds of Feilding residents to show their support for the community project. Once the Wab is restored to mainline operational condition, it will be used to run trains in the Wanganui and Woodville areas, using Feilding as our base.

Once the Wab was in Feilding, it was pushed into its new shed (the Old Woolbank), where the overhaul began to take place.

The almost fully restored Wab794 on the turntable within the depot on the 17th November 2002.
The Wab’s first mainline excursion was on the 31st August 2003.

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