Chinese Main Line Steam Videos

Videos of main line steam in China by Bryan Acford.

JS Departure

High deflectored JS 8313 makes a spirited departure from Bei'an with the through Dandong - Longzhen passenger in March 1999, shortly before CNR steam finished in the far north.

JS Departure video clip

Ma'anshan Tunnel 2

JS 5457 emerges from Ma'anshan Tunnel with empties bound for the log yards between Longjing and Helong in November 1998, the final month of steam working on the branch lines from Chaoyangchuan.

Ma’anshan Tunnel 2 video clip

Ma'anshan Tunnel 1

JS 5664 approaches Ma'anshan Tunnel with a coal train from Chaoyangchuan to Kaishantun in November 1998. The branch to Kaishantun runs through the the Baishan mountains, close to the border with North Korea.

Ma'anshan Tunnel 1 video clip


The daily passenger climbs from Dawukou to Zaowo behind QJ6547 on 26 Feb 1998.

Zaowo video clip

Suburban Glint

Until early 2000 Baotou Dong despatched 4 westbound passenger trains in a 40 minute period around sunrise. This gave a variety of opportunities for atmospheric pictures. On 22nd October 1998 decorated JS8279 accelerates its regular diagram, train T921 – the final departure, through Baotou Dong yards on the clockwise trip around the suburban loop line which surrounded the city.

Suburban Glint video clip

Shiguai Passenger

Just a few days after the previous sequence the scene and temperature was very different. After heavy overnight snow JS8005 heads T804, the morning train back to Baotou, over the bridge approaching Houba station – a memorable start to my final day photographing CNR steam!

Shiguai Passenger video clip

Shiguai Shortie

Loaded trains from Shiguai were usually banked up the 1 in 50 grade to Houba but on 30th November 1999 there were only 4 loaded wagons for the afternoon train so JS8005 rushed the bank on it’s own. It is seen here approaching the summit of the line at Houba.

Shiguai Shortie video clip

Nancha Sunset

The essence of Nancha. There was often train of empties at dusk which came storming out of the setting sun as it fought a losing battle against the cloud of pollution which covered Nancha. On 17/2/95 QJ6961 & 2590, banked by 1764 storm along the branch on the outskirts of the town where the branch ran parallel to the mainline to Jiamusi. Nancha in Sept 2005 was little changed, apart from the absence of steam and a general air of dereliction around once busy factories.

Nancha Sunset video clip

Summit Passenger

QJ 1985 approaches the summit of the climb from Liushu with T534 southbound, although I didn't realise it at the time this would be the last shot I took at Nancha - and that was before we knew about the Ji-Tong, 19 Feb 1995.

Summit Passenger video clip

Banked Empties

QJ 6893 banked by QJ 2590 filmed on the climb from Nancha with empties for the woodyards, 17/2/95.

Banked Empties video clip

Daoqing Westbound

Friday 10th Feb 1995. On an unusually clear day, JS5040 climbs wb from Daoqing in the early afternoon with a long mixed freight. The loco was 38 years old at this time but was still performing like a youngster. Although diesels had arrived on the Tonghua - Hunjiang line by this time steam continued here until the very end of CNR steam in the NE, in early 2001.

Daoqing Westbound video clip

High Deflectors

JS 5957 starts an eb goods from Daoqing en route from Tonghua to Hunjiang on Mon 13 Feb 1995.

High Deflectors video clip