The International Steam Pages

Indonesian Narrow Gauge Mallets - Java

This page illustrates examples of articulated steam locomotives - click here for the introduction to Mallet locomotives.

I saw my first Mallet in Indonesia in 1975, I have been through my extensive archive to produce this summary. I confess that many of these pictures appeared in my 'Those were the Days' feature, but here they are presented in a way that will allow a full appreciation of the type in service in Indonesia over the years.

The Sugar Mills of Java

All locomotives on this page are 0-4-4-0T and of 700mm gauge unless stated otherwise.


The few Borsig Mallets seem to have been either unsuccessful or unlucky because none lasted at work beyond the mid 1980s. 

Lestari #6 was working on 28th May 1978. It was a shame the light was all wrong then because I never saw it again...

Semboro #31 was near the end of its working life on 1st August 1984.


Jung Mallets were distinctly different and elegant compared with the others.

Tersana Baru #9 was at work on 13th June 1978, but was withdrawn from service shortly after.

Ceper preferred to run its Mallets backwards. 750mm gauge #5 was returning to the mill on 23rd August 1986 in glorious afternoon light. It is now preserved in the UK.

Jatibarang #9 was one of only two 600mm gauge Mallets that survived by the time I got to Java. I caught it in the glorious last sunlight on 29th August 1996. It is now preserved in the UK.

Du Croo & Brauns

In comparison to the three other builders covered here, DB were late entrants to the field because they only started to build steam locomotives after WW 1.

By 2nd August 1997, there was nowhere in Java where you could hope to see more than one working Mallet except Pesantren. #216 was at work with several sister locomotives then at the new Pesantren mill.

Ngadirejo #207 was working a processed sugar train on 2nd June 1978.

It seems that the mill was short of box vans for production cane by 3rd August 1984 and a flat car was in use as well, the riders behind #224 were no doubt employed to load and unload the bags of sugar.

Ketanggungan Barat #5 came past just after dawn approaching Luwung Gajah on 30th July 1996.

The last mill with 'real' Mallets was Pesantren, but they decided they could do without them at the end of the 2003 season, this was my 2001 picture:

Orenstein and Koppel (OK)

There were more OK Mallets in Java than all other builders put together, but, to be honest, they were inferior to that builder's Klien Lindner 0-8-0T. I haven't checked carefully but I think they were all fitted with OK's patent valve gear. Simple it may have been but it was inferior to the Walschaert's version carried by the other builders' Mallets. Apart from Gending #4 and Pakis Baru #5 preserved in Europe, Krebet Baru #3 is preserved in Australia.

The oldest Mallet I saw working in Java was Pakis Baru #5. Here it runs round the front of the mill during the last year of operation on 9th August 1999. It is now preserved in the UK.

Ex-Ngadirejo OK Mallet was #150 was seen sitting outside the shed at the old mill at Pesantren on 21st August 1983.

Tiny 30HP 600mm gauge Gending #4 ready to roll on 1st June 1979. Of course, in 1997 this was sent to the Frankfurter Feldbahn Museum in Germany -

On 3rd August 1984, Ngadirejo #175 was shunting the delivery yard

The remaining locomotives in this section were delivered after World War 1.

Mojopanggung #10, photographed on 2nd June 1978 later became Gempolkerep 5.

Jatiroto 92 had a large fleet of OK Mallets. On 29th May 1979, there wasn't much activity but 92 was brewing up outside the shed.

The later Mallets seen above were 80HP machines, Semboro by contrast had smaller 60HP Mallets, #15 was coming in at speed with a loaded train on 1st August 1984

Rob Dickinson