Union Pacific “Big Boy” Number 4014
Interactive Backhead Photo
What does that button, valve, lever, gauge, light, knob, etc. actually do???
Back on our website by popular demand!
The backhead of a steam locomotive is the end of its firebox facing inside the cab. Most of the locomotive’s controls used by the locomotive’s engineer and fireman are mounted on the backhead. All the gadgets needed to control the firebox’s fuel intake, boiler’s steam pressure, the locomotive’s acceleration on the track, and a whole lot more are within easy reach of its crew.
Just hover your computer mouse over any item shown on the Big Boy #4014 backhead photo, and a description appears under the photo. If only operating a steam locomotive was this easy.
This photo illustrates the controls of a coal burning firebox used in Big Boy #4014’s 18 year operational history. In future years we expect it will look different once certain parts are cleaned, painted, rebuilt, and replaced in its transition to operate using an active oil burning firebox.