The railcar "Billard"

Le Billard au depot

The Billard at the station of Volgelsheim.

General characteristics of the railcar:

Builder: Billard
Model/Type: 900/1945
Date of delivery: 1948
Road numbers: 907
Diesel power [kW]: 59
Railcar power [kW]: ?
Starting tractive effort [kN]: ?
Maximum safe speed [km/h]: 75
Weight in working order [t]: 12
Total length [m]: 11,27

General view:


Builder plate:


Short presentation:

This small railcar is quite typical of the shortage time after WW2. They were very affordable and consequently quite spartan. Their use made the operation of short lines with low traffic profitable. France would anyway be able to buy automobiles only during the following decades.

They were equipped with a diesel engine from Panhard from type 4HL or a Willème FAM 316 which was less performand (52 against 59kW). A 5 speed gear box allowed following maximum safe speeds: 18, 29, 44, 60 and 75km/h. The capacity of the fuel tank was only 75l which was sufficient for about 350km. They offered 32 seating positions but the plattforms at the ends had a capacitiy of 60 to 70 persons. They were not meant to pull a wagon but to be coupled together. Their fuel consumption was very moderate and the service that these railcars could provide was very competitive, compared with buses on the road.

This one has been saved in Autun, at the depot of the "Chemins de Fer Départementaux" (CFD). At the CFTR it was only used occasionally when a group booked it.

The mechanical part was in good state but the body has required a lot of work!.

The billard was involved in the terrible accident in 2003 and was extremely damaged. The association was not able anymore to repare it and it was decided to scrap it.

It has been transfered in 2012 to the Association "Transvap" which already owns different copies and has still decided to restaure it.

Life at CFTR:

Last owner before salvage: CFD
Retirement date: 1982
Acquisition date: 1984
Current owner: -
Restauration: 1986
Use at the CFTR: only on demand
Retirement by the CFTR: 2003
Date of sell: 2012

Pictures at the CFTR:


Under Construction

Bye bye good old Billard! Here at the depot in january 2012, Picture: André Lacher

Bibliography and external links:

  • Everyone who has informations about this railcar is invited to make contact with us!

Further technical information: 


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