MGB Furka Car Trains

When the Furka-Oberalp built a low-level tunnel under the Furka Pass, part of the deal was that the railway would provide an all-year-round road vehicle shuttle service through the tunnel. This required the construction of some purpose-built car carriers. The design of the car-carrier vehicles, and the use of fixed-formation push-pull sets, was modelled on the bls car shuttle service through the (standard gauge) Lotschberg tunnel. The Rh B later modelled its Vereina car shuttles on those of the fo.

All the vehicles, including the driving trailers, are mounted on a standard underframe. At 2.9m wide and 20.9m long, they are some of the biggest narrow-gauge stock in existence. Two sets were built initially: later a third set was added.

To avoid tying up expensive rack locos, the fo also ordered a couple of adhesion-only locomotives (type Ge4/4ii), which would be dedicated to the car carrier trains. If demand requires three sets to operate, an hge4/4iii can also be used.

Ge4/4ii locos 81 and 82

These are the only non-rack main-line locos on the mgb system. The transmission and electrical parts are based on those of the Rh B’s second-generation bogie locos, the Ge4/4ii. Like the later hge4/4iii, they use the reinforced bodyshell to transmit traction loads, rather than having a separate frame — hence the ribbed sides and prominent load-transfer beams. They are named after the two cantons linked by the tunnel.

Skl-v Car carrier wagon

There are normally five or six of these in a set. They are provided with a protective roof so that occupants can stay in their vehicles during the journey through the tunnel. The roof is high enough to allow buses and light vans to be carried; high-sided vehicles have to travel on the loading wagons.

Skl-v Side-loading wagon

Each set has side-loading wagons at both ends. These are fitted with ramps that can be lowered for loading and unloading from a side platform, without the need to uncouple the loco. The one at the loco end is fitted with a “pergola” at one end as protection against ohle failure. Each vehicle is also provided with air-operated jacks to stabilise it during loading and unloading.

bdt Driving trailer

The driving trailer provides accomodation for cycles and motorcycles, as well as seating for the occupants of vehicles carried on the side-loading wagons. Access is via sliding doors from the adjacent side-loading wagon.