Baden IVh - The Complicated Beauty.
In 1915, the Grand Ducal Baden State Railways ordered 20 locomotives with a 4-6-2 wheel arrangement (Pacific) from Maffei in Munich in order to operate the Rhine Valley line more efficiently. This locomotive type was designated as the IVh and was planned mainly for use between Mannheim and Basle. The design was therefore laid out purely as an express locomotive for flat terrain. When the last class IVh locomotives were delivered by the builder in 1920, the Baden State Railways were already incorporated into the German State Railroad, which took all 20 locomotives into its roster as the class 18.3. These units were stationed at the maintenance facility in Offenburg and were the flagship express locomotive on the Rhine Valley line. They could often be seen pulling the German State Railroad's new luxury train, the Rheingold. Maffei designed four-cylinder compound running gear for the IVh, whose inner cylinders were positioned far to the front and gave the locomotive its unmistakable look. The tender also contributed to the characteristic look of the locomotive. It was unusually short with a truck and with two axles mounted close to one another in the frame of the tender. During its service life, the Baden IVh was not very popular with either the locomotive crews or the railroad's managers because of its complicated technology, and it was transferred in groups to North Germany until all 20 locomotives were stationed in Bremen in 1942. They were used primarily in the area of the North German flatlands, an area they were best suited for.