Shell 5000 gallon oval tanker

About the exhibit

Static exhibit

Since aquisition from Corrimal Coal and Coke, this car has been partially restored and is viewable during tram and train rides at Valley Heights Rail Museum.


Transport Heritage NSW trading as Valley Heights Locomotive Depot Heritage Museum


  • Clyde Engineering built 60 four wheel tank cars for Shell with 5000 gallon oval tanks between 1925 and 1928. They constituted the largest group of tank car of the same design operated in NSW.

  • Details of construction are No's. 26 to 39 inc. were built in 1925.

  • Nos. 40 to 62 inc. were built in 1926.

  • Nos. 63 to 86 inc. were built in 1927.

They were all covered by Railway Outline Diagram No.(13) 114. (dated 1944)

Shell tanker diagram

Click on diagram to see full size

  • The Tank measured 8'-9" x 7'-0" with a Shell Length of 16'-1" and was of lapped double riveted construction. It carried a single Dome of 2'-6" dia.

  • The Underframe measured 18'-0" x 8'-0" with 10'-0" Axle Centres and was fitted with 16" ?? type buffers and three link drawgear. There is no evidence that any were retro-fitted with Auto Couplers.

  • The Tank was supported on four hardwood saddles and was held in position by wooden Endbars and diagonal rod braces. Heavy wire ropes were also passed around the Dome and attached to the Headstocks. There was no Tank Anchor connecting the Tank direct to the Underframe.

  • These Tanks were fitted with a Common Fill and Discharge Fitting on the top of the Tank adjacent to the Dome. Therefore they had no Bottom Discharge Pipe and could only be used for the transport of light fuels such as Petrol and Power Kerosene.

  • Four of these Cars had their 5000 gal tanks removed in 1937 and replaced with 3000 Gal. welded tanks for the transport of heavy Fuels. They were Nos. 33,34,35 & 36 and the retained their numbers after the rebuild. (These are the Teak Can that Lloyd produced in his first kit.)

  • Various Colour schemes and Logos have been carried over the years.

    1. 1925- Black Tank and Underframe with yellow SHELL+ @ + motor spirit and lubricating oil. (@denotes Shell symbol). As per Clyde Book~1929- Yellow Tank with large SHELL in Red with dark shading spread along the full length of Tank side. As per old Shell photo of Sandown Refinery taken about 1929. Negative No.6/866 HGA Photo Library.
      1929- Silver Tank with White? Strip along side with CROSS POWER KEROSENE in a dark colour. A Maltese Cross was painted between the words with CROSS painted on the horizontal arm. As per old Shell photo of Sandown taken about 1929. Negative No.7/866. HGA Photo Library.

    2. 1948- Silver Tank with curved Enamel Sign fixed to a frame mounted on side of tan~ sign with yellow background and red SHELL plus red stripe at top and bottom of Sign. Per 4 wheel tank car at Valley Heights Heritage Museum. Size of Sign Frame measured 79'-10"x 3'-11". A very good photo showing newly painted Tank No.62 with sign by C.C.Singleton in No.116 Vol.10 (1982) Australian Model Railway Magazine.

  • All of these Tank Cars appear to have been scrapped in the 1959/60 period and the only ones to survive are the one at Valley Heights ex. Corrimal Coal & Coke and one that was at the Ophir County Council Pole Depot at Orange.