top of page

Austrains 36 Class Steam Locomotive

DCC Sound Installation with Lighting Modifications

Now available with a NEW Remastered Custom Sound Project

including "Full Throttle - Heavy Load" feature

Also, suitable for Bergs and DJH Models

About the 36 Class Steam Locomotive

The NSWGR C36 class was a class of two-cylinder, coal-fired superheated, 4-6-0 express passenger steam locomotives.

Eveleigh Railway Workshops built the first 10 while the remaining 65 were built by Clyde Engineering for the New South Wales Government Railways in Australia. The 36 class was a relatively minor development of the 35 class that was introduced in 1914.

The C36 was introduced in 1925, the 75 locomotives of the class became the principal motive power for all major expresses and long distance passenger timetables. They were the backbone of passenger expresses for over 20 years before the arrival of the 38 class.

When delivered, all were painted in standard unlined black. For the 1927 Royal Tour of the Duke and Duchess of York, 3602, 3615, 3616 & 3617 were painted Royal Blue, with yellow and black lining. In 1934 to operate the Southern Highlands Express 3633 was repainted green. Subsequently, another 28 members were also painted green. World War Two austerity meant steam locomotives were only painted black, and as the 36 class became due for repainting, they reverted to plain black which they would carry until withdrawn. 

The 36 class originally had a round-top boiler rather than the Belpaire type and were all superheated. In the early to mid-1950s, the majority of the class were rebuilt with new, all-steel Belpaire boilers and re-designed cabs. The 36 class was the first mainline locomotive design in New South Wales to be fitted with outside Walschaerts valve gear, which later all subsequent steam classes followed suit.

The 36 Class were placed on express passenger services, initially on the premier Newcastle Flyer trains, then later on Southern and Northern expresses and mail trains. The increased range of the class was trialled early on, with through trips from Sydney to Albury, a distance of some 640 km, without changing the locomotive. By the late 1920s, the class were in regular use on the Melbourne Limited and Melbourne Express, generally with only four servicing stops en route.

On the Main North they worked trains as far as Armidale and on the North Coast to South Grafton. Following the opening of the Grafton Bridge over the Clarence River, the class worked all the way to South Brisbane. When the Central West Express, Northern Tablelands Express and Riverina Express were introduced in 1941, the 36 class were rostered. By the 1950s the 38 class had taken over all major express services, and the 36 class were typically used on slower passenger services and mail trains, including to Albury, Narrandera, Dubbo, Parkes, Thirroul, Armidale and South Brisbane and local stopping trains on the Short North to Newcastle.

Following electrification of the Main Western line to Lithgow in 1957, some 36 class locomotives were based at Lithgow, Bathurst and Parkes, and with the introduction of diesel locomotives, were relegated to freight trains, although they did continue to haul the Central West Express to the west of Lithgow until at least 1963. As well as providing a faster service, useful for more perishable goods, the rostering of the 36 class on freight workings allowed the withdrawal of numbers of Standard Goods locomotives. Withdrawal of the 36 class commenced in January 1959 as more diesels became available, but a number were temporarily returned to traffic in late 1966, to work wheat trains after a record harvest. The last was withdrawn in September 1969. There are three of the 36 class preserved 3609, 3616, and 3642 which is still operational.

DCC with Sound and Light Modifications

The Austrains 36 Class was first released way back in 1999 and over time a few different runs were released, each with something extra to do before converting to DCC. Some had no headlight and no tender pickups. Another had a headlight and still no tender pickups. The later run included models with a very basic decoder for those wanting DCC. The Austrains 36 Class model runs ok in DC but with DCC, especially sound, it is really noticeable the low level of track pick up and requires either additional pickups on the tender or the addition of a Stay Alive Device.

For this installation, we recommend the ESU LokSound 5 (Sound) with our remastered Custom Sound Project for the 36 Class or the LokPilot 5 (No Sound) for those not wishing sound.

The installation of the DCCS PowerPlus Stay Alive is highly recommended, enabling uninterrupted performance at super slow speeds, especially travelling through insulfrog points.

We offer a light modification for the Austrains 36 Class

New Headlight Operation

We have modified the headlight operation to resemble the prototypical operation of a real steam locomotive, where the light generator controls the operation rather than the light function. No more turning off the sound and the light stays on waiting for you to turn it off.

Also, added are:

* Automatic High Beam Headlight Function when the locomotive begins to drive. Bring it to a stop and the headlight will return to dim.

* Low Beam Front Headlight when reversing is also available.

Tender Marker Lights

Here at DCC Solutions, we can install some white and red marker lights to the tender to really enhance the model when running light or shunting. This allows light engine running with the front headlight and rear red markers. White markers for running in reverse.

New Headlight Installation (1st run models)

Own a first run Austrains 36 Class with no headlight? Well here at DCC Solutions we can install a LED headlight into your model, so you can now enjoy running your model with our new headlight operation to add the realism of running your model.

The DCC Solutions NSW 36 Class Custom Sound Project is packed with

sounds and features not found on other sound decoders

and will have your model sounding just like a real steam locomotive

So why not get fully featured sound from DCC Solutions

Our Custom Sound Project now includes these fantastic features:

Cold and Hot Start Up Sequences

Select the Cold Start Up and you will activate the cold boiler preheat long start to hear the water being pumped into the boiler, the light of a match to start the fire, the sound of the fire crackling, coal shovelling and the sounds of the pressure building up to reach the correct level before commencing to move off. Now that's something you won't hear from other sound decoders!

Select the Hot Start-Up to activate the hot boiler quick start to skip the preheat assuming the correct boiler pressure is almost reached.

Shut down your 36 Class and the sound just doesn't stop. Steam releases and other sounds will be heard as the locomotive shuts down.

Full Throttle – Drive Hold

This feature allows you to simulate a hard-working loaded train by pressing the F1 function button. When the button is pressed, the motor will remain at a constant speed, while the sound changes into an intense chuff, so this can simulate a hard-working steam locomotive. This exciting, new feature gives the operator the ability to have the train crawling along the track while producing an intense chuff. Release the Drive Hold function button, and you simply go back to throttle-controlled speed, motion and sound. Available only from DCC Solutions, our Drive Hold will stop your loco when you reduce the speed to zero, even while the function is still active. Your ESU factory sound or sound from other providers will not stop your loco at speed step 0 with the drive hold switched on.

Coasting on Demand

This feature allows you to enter coasting mode whenever you want with a press of a button. The loco will enter the coasting mode and remain in coasting until you turn it off, regardless of changes in the speed. Experiment with turning it on and off while the loco is moving at speed to hear the sound changes of a steam locomotive when you want. With this feature, you can have your model sounding like a real steam locomotive.

Working Brake

Press the Brake Function button, and your locomotive will come to a stop at a much shorter distance than if you were to bring it to a stop by reducing the throttle speed. Release the brake and your locomotive will move off again, or choose to have it remain stationary when the brake is released. The brake can also be used while driving to slow the locomotive up.

Brake Squeal on Deceleration

Activate this function and when you reduce the throttle speed, your locomotive will begin braking and slow up quicker as you continue to lower the throttle speed, and you will hear the squeal of the brakes. Accelerating will release the brakes.

Coupling and Release with DCCS Shunting Mode

Activate coupling or release and your locomotive will automatically reduce its speed to allow for a more realistic coupling or release operation. Once the coupling operation is completed, your locomotive will automatically stop while once uncoupled will continue to run at slow speed for a few more seconds before returning to the speed set on your throttle.

Prototypical Headlight Operation

We have also modified the headlight operation to resemble the prototypical operation.

In the past you would have turned off the sound (Pressing F8) and all the sounds including the generator would stop playing, but your headlight would remain on, and you would have to turn it off separately. Well not anymore...

Press the headlight button (F0) to turn on the generator. The headlight won't turn on until enough power has been generated to turn the light on, dimmed. While the generator is on, the headlight stays on. If you press F8 to shut down and turn the loco sound off which will include the generator, then the headlight will also turn off even if you haven't turned the headlight off itself using the headlight button.

Also, added for lighting are:

Automatic High Beam Headlight Function when the locomotive begins to drive. Bring the loco to a stop, and it will return to a dim state.

Low Beam Front Headlight when reversing is also available.

Selectable high to low beam while driving.

Remastered Whistle

A new remastered 36 Class whistle that includes user selectable options

  • Playable with varying starts and ends to the whistle.

  • Three additional versions of the playable whistle

  • A reversing whistle

And includes all these great features to make your Austrains 36 Class drive and sound impressive

  • NSWGR 3642 recorded steam sounds

  • Cold Boiler Start Up Sequence including boiler water fill, fire up sequence, boiler pressure reached before moving off

  • Optional Quick Hot Start Up Sequence - Straight to waiting for boiler pressure to be reach before moving off

  • Full Throttle Heavy Load - Lock the loco speed and control the chuff sound independently to simulate a hard-working locomotive

  • Coasting On Demand

  • Working Brake

  • Brake squeal on deceleration and turns off on acceleration

  • NSWGR 36 Class Whistle with variations including a reversing whistle

  • NSWGR 36 Class Compressor

  • Playable Stop Sounds including boiler/steam sounds, safety values, blower and more

  • Random Drive Sounds including track squeal, compressor, injectors, coal shovelling, and more

  • Individual Coupling and Release Options depending on the locomotive's direction with shunting mode

  • Water filling tender sounds

  • Generator controlled Headlight. The headlight is controlled by the generator sound

  • Automatic High Beam Headlight Function when the locomotive begins to drive and returning to a dim state at stop

  • Optional low beam headlight when reversing or while driving

  • Guard's Whistle

  • Wheel Squeal and Rail Clanking

  • Can play up to 10 different sounds simultaneously

  • Sound volumes tuned to specifically suit the Austrains 36 Class Locomotive Model using the DCC Solutions speaker

  • Motor settings tuned to provide Slow Speed motor performance

  • Individual sounds slots and master sound volumes can be adjusted by the user to suit personal requirements

  • Full function button remapping to suit your personal requirements

  • DCC Solutions High-Performance Speaker delivering impressive sound

  • DCCS PowerPlus Stay Alive to enable uninterrupted DCC performance

  • This Sound Project is also suitable for other brands of 36 Class Model 


Standard DCC Installation: Non-sound decoder

Premium Sound Installation: ESU LokSound 5 programmed with the DCC Solutions Custom NSW 36 Class Sound Project

Premium Sound Installation and Light Modification: ESU LokSound 5 sound decoder programmed with the DCC Solutions Custom NSW 36 Class Sound Project with dual red/white LEDs for operating red and white marker lights on the rear of the tender

Improved Track Pick Up: Due to no track pick up in the tender, all Austrains 36 Class DCC installations will include a Stay Alive for improved DCC operation during times of power interruptions due to dirty or problematic track work to keep the loco moving along uninterupted with sound and lights

New Headlight Installation (1st run models): Install an LED headlight into your model.

DCC Solutions SOUND and FUNCTION Labels

Premium Sound Installation and Light Modification using the ESU LokSound 5

F0    Headlight - FWD-Bright_REV-Off_STOP-Dim

F1    Drive Hold - Heavy Load

F2    Playable Whistle

F3    Low Beam Headlight while driving

F4    Cylinder Steam Release

F5    Coasting On Demand

F6    Brake

F7    Brake Squeal on Deceleration

F8    Boiler Start Up Sound On/Off/Mute

F9    Directional Rear Marker Lights

F10  Rear Red Markers [Optional]

F11  Rear White Markers

F12  Reserved (Light Mods)

F13  Headlight - FWD-Bright_REV-Dim_STOP-Dim

F14  Reserved (Light Mods)

F15  Blower

F16  Compressor

F17  Coupling /Uncoupling + DCCS Shunting Mode

F18  Wheel Squeal

F19  Guard's Whistle

F20  Sanding

F21  Volume Fader - Reduces Sound 50%

F22  Headlight On/Off (No Generator for Silent Running)

F23  Tender Water Fill

F24  Injectors

F25  Safety Valves

F26  Coal Shovelling

F27  Shunting Mode

F28  Rail Clank

Note: The above functions are for the LokSound 5 Decoder programmed with DCC Solutions Premium Custom Sound Installation with Light Modification.

The functions and sounds will be different from any standard generic ESU Sound Files or other Sound Decoders. To learn how to use these functions, see the Info & Help page.

All functions can be reprogrammed to suit your own personal requirements.

bottom of page