Signal at the end of the train

Generally, back then, kerosene lamps were used with one at each side of the body of the car. The lamps stuck out so that they could be seen down the length of the train and the brackets were often on the corner beam of the car. Depending upon the road and the train, there would often be a different color filter on the front and/or sides of the lamp but red was always to the rear. An all red lamp would be quite prototypical and probably be the common thing for a branchline or small railroad as they didn't need ot buy other colors or change things depending upon the train. Some railroads, SP notably with their bay window cabooses, eventually used a single lamp on top of the car but things like that were more the exception than the rule.
-- Yeppie, Bush is such an idiot that He usually outwits everybody else. How dumb!
Reply to
Bob May
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How looked the red signal used during nights at the end of the train
(mounted on the caboose) on a small branch line in the time frame 1900 -
1920?
I want to build one with a red LED on my Bachmann 0n30 caboose.
A link to a picture (model or prototype) would be nice.
btw. What is the right english term for the red ligt at the trains end?
Reply to
Reinhard Peters
"Bob May"
Wrong.
Caboose marker were typically of a standard design and varied only in details of each manufacture.
All the lenses of a caboose could be of different colours.
If the train was routed into a siding, the lens colours were changed (Even on branch lines or small railroads) as these were the rules.
And example of caboose marker lights rules: -
On single track, and when running with the current of traffic on double track: red to the rear.
On double track running against the current of traffic: red to the rear on the outside and green to the rear between the tracks.
On multiple track (against or with the current of traffic) red to the rear unless otherwise instructed by special instructions.
When a train clears the main track (e.g. goes into a siding) permitting another train to pass, green markers must be shown to the rear.
If a train has a flashing red marker at the rear, it must be switched to a flashing green marker in the above instance.
If a caboose is not equipped with a green signal to indicate it has cleared he main track, the red light must be replaced with a white light to indicate the train is clear.
-- Cheers
Roger T.
Home of the Great Eastern Railway
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Reply to
Roger T.
Probably the most correct answer to your question is that in the USA they were generally called marker lights. Marker Lights That's what they were called on all the railroads I worked on. I think the Canadians also called them marker lights, but there may have some other names for them that I do not know. Referring to them them as marker lights though, is a real safe bet.
Froggy
Reply to
Froggy
Roger T. schrieb am 15.10.2006 01:18:
Thank you for the explanation. Is the mandatory change of the color one of the reasons why the caboose must run at the end of the train to have a crew member at the end of the train to change the color? It would be close to impossible if the caboose runs right after the engine and the train is rather long.
No, I have no quick idear how to implement that. How do you do it in the US with thousands/millions of model rainroads? Must be a comon problem with a solid solution.
Reply to
Reinhard Peters
As others have replied, the more recent term is "marker lights" which were kerosene or later electric lamps with 3 or 4 lenses hung at the two rear corners of the caboose.
In earlier times, as shown in the 1906 Car Builders Dictionary, the term "marker" was not used, and these were called either "tail lights" or "signal lights". The Dictionary shows three different configurations:
1) A large lamp housing centered on the top of the cupola, having two lenses, one facing forward and one facing to the rear. These appear to have had a operating rod that went through the cupola roof to a handle that could be operated by the crewman in the cupola. It is not clear whether this handle changed the color displayed, or merely blocked off the light.
2) Two boxy housings centered on the front and rear faces of the cupola, with small (perhaps 10" x 10") square windows facing to the front and rear, respectively. The back sides of these housings appear to open to the inside of the cupola, so a crewman could place and remove oil lamps inside the housings. A variation of this design is having just two open platforms on the front and rear faces of the cupola to support signal lamps placed from the outside, or perhaps by leaning out of the cupola end windows. I could imagine that the former design was favored by northern RRs and the latter by RRs in more temperate climates.
3) Lamp housings on the sides of the caboose near the rear platform. Some plans show a box that protrudes from the side of the car with glass to the front, side and rear, and apparently open to the inside of the caboose, to house the signal light lamp, which could be a simple, un-weather-proofed type as it is protected within the box. Other plans show the simple dual purpose cast iron bracket that would support either a flag (for day time operation) or the mounting shoe on the typical weather and wind-proof signal lamp (at night).
Of these, the single light on the top of the cupola would seem to be the easiest to model - drill a hole in the center of the cupola roof, insert the LED from inside, and make a simple housing to cover the LED - perhaps a short length of brass tube with an ID to fit around the LED, solder on a conical top, and drill holes or opposite sides of the tube to let the LED shine to the front and rear.
Geezer
Reply to
Geezer
Thanks for all the tips.
With "kerosene lamps marker light" google pointed me to this british lamp. I assume the US version was very similar.
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Reply to
Reinhard Peters
Google is your friend here. American railway lanterns tended to look more like this:
Trainman's lantern:
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more:
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Marker and class light lamps:
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At the bottom of this page you will find a photo of a typical North American style locomotive/caboose, marker/class lamp. While there are very many variations on this theme, the basic principle of construction is pretty much the same. The lamp may have from one to four lenses, and is typically equipped with some form of device to enable it to be attached to some sort of holding device on the locomotive or caboose. The lamp may have fixed color lenses, or it may be equipped with a method to change the color displayed by using colored glass plates or some other means. the world of railway lanterns is a hobby unto itself and once you walk through that door you will soon find that there is no single answer that can absolutely describe how one of these things looked or how it was used. Generally, a red light was displayed to the rear of the train. Different railway companies, however, had different systems and rules for operating marker lamps such that if you want to go beyond simply putting a red light on the rear of your train, you will need to do just a bit more research into the topic to determine which operating method you like best. Some were very simple, while others were very complex.
Froggy
Reply to
Froggy
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The Adlake lantern I got from my grandfather is something like a model 270, but it has a single lens. It is stamped NYC&StL Ry (the Nickel Plate, where he was a freight conductor), has the socket for sliding onto a holder, and had been converted from kerosene (it has the chimney top and all that) to electricity.
There's a British term, I think it is, for "tail end charlies" that seems relevant: "back marker".
Reply to
Steve Caple
Setup the caboose with the normal setup for normal running and ignore the differences that are on the real railroad. If you're running your own road name, just make that the one and only configuration and be done with it. Note that different railroads did things differently in this regard with a road like the SP just requiring the red to the rear.
-- Yeppie, Bush is such an idiot that He usually outwits everybody else. How dumb!
Reply to
Bob May
Forgot to mention that if there was no marker at the end of the train, a following train may run into it. This was a problem, especially in the early days before the penumatic brake system when the train may break in two and the engineer never know about it. Today, the engineer will quickly know because the brake system works by the removal of air from the train line (normaly set at around 90psi) rather than the addition of air to stop the train.
-- Yeppie, Bush is such an idiot that He usually outwits everybody else. How dumb!
Reply to
Bob May
A train without markers was not a train.
As soon as they aded the markers, the collection of locomotive(s) cars and caboose (If a freight) became a train. When the markers were removed, it became a collotion of locomotive(s) cars and caboose.
It was the markers that made the train.
-- Cheers
Roger T.
Home of the Great Eastern Railway
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Reply to
Roger T.
Roger T. schrieb am 16.10.2006 06:34:
This
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will make my train:-)
Thanks for all the help
Reply to
Reinhard Peters
Roger, that definition of a train is only recent. Before markers, by your definition, they didn't have trains.
-- Yeppie, Bush is such an idiot that He usually outwits everybody else. How dumb!
Reply to
Bob May

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