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Switcher

The 0-4-0 steam switchers were commonly used to pull short and medium distance freight trains along main and branch lines and were very popular with small industries, dock yards and light yard duty. Because they lack leading and trailing wheels, locomotives of this type have all their weight pressing down on their drive wheels and consequently have a high tractive effort making them comparatively strong engines for their size, weight and fuel consumption. On the other hand, without the leading wheels, 0-4-0 locomotives are less stable at speed, so they are mostly used on trains where high speed is unnecessary.

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