Pre-modernisation Scene

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StevieG
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by StevieG » Thu Dec 10, 2009 12:37 am

Re, RP's observation, the sounder 'extensions' were there to amplfy the sounders' 'tick' 'tock' emissions as they were tapped by the morse needle (left=dot, right=dash), so that the signalman (and if there was one, the 'lad') could read messages by sound alone more easily. Without any means of amplification, the unassisted official sounders were more more feeble, tending (IMHO) to sound more like fairly high-pitched 'ting / tangs': - Readable by sound sometimes, but likely to be overwhelmed by some bell or telephone rings and levers crashing about.
A not so obvious advantage to the telegraph was that when anyone was sending a message, although a recipient would have been first called up by code, all the needles at installations on that circuit along the line, moved in unison, so everyone else on the circuit could listen in/watch, and possibly make good use of the information, without having to be separately called up to receive a repeat of the message.

The pictured 'amplifiers' were a bit unusual, looking as if cut from old tin(-plate).

Much more common was the shallow lid of a large-ish rectangular, round-cornered, tobacco tin, carefully folded in half, back on itself, in order to wedge under the sounders and against the bottom (just below it) of the instrument's square wooden aperture.
Alternatively, a round tobacco tin of more moderate size was also oft-seen, having been gingerly pushed about 2/3 of the way onto the sounders, almost completely covering them, but stopping short so as not to wedge the needle against its backplate, and the needle tip could also still be seen above the 'amplifier' for sight-reading.
Both methods were usually quite effective.

Most boxes which were on about four or more telegraph circuits had (unlike 'Barnet' North - see photo) a telegraph concentrator instrument, with as many separate read-only needle units as circuits that the location was connected with, and a row of telephone-type 'keys' (switches) corresponding in number with the number of needles.
There was also, necessarily, a single independent 'sending' instrument, which was switched into whichever circuit was to be sent on, using the relevant telephone key. Examples can be recalled as at Cemetery, 'Barnet' South, Potters Bar (the 1950s power box), Hatfield 1 & 2, Welwyn GC ....

I mention the concentrator arrangement, because at Hatfield No.1, this independent sending instrument was a notable exception as far as its amplification of sounders was concerned, the sounders being formed quite elaborately and neatly on each side from corrugated black tin, seemingly edged at certain parts with polished strips of brass or similar, and making adequately louder sounds than the normal ones.
They looked smart enough to have even have been official equipment rather than 'home-grown', but I never saw their like elsewhere.
BZOH

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61070
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by 61070 » Sat Dec 12, 2009 12:10 pm

R. pike wrote:Another brilliant picture! Most people don't turn the camera on thing's other than the levers, instruments and box diagram. I found when i rebuilt the four signalboxes i'm involved with i had no pictures of the rear wall, booking shelf and telephones. I no longer make this mistake if i visit a box. Pictures of signalmen doing anything other than pulling levers are rare.

I hope to see you at the NNR for the crossing opening...
Thanks RP. My Dad enjoyed taking photos of people in natural situations, just 'going about their business'. We are looking forward to the trip to Sheringham next year - I've not been there since the mid-60s.

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manna
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by manna » Sat Dec 12, 2009 10:02 pm

G'Day Gents

Your mate Jock, smoked Park Drive. Nearly every signalbox I ever went into always had well polished brown lino floors,( I think Southend Central's was green) with a mat by the door, I always knocked on the door (even at 3am) then wiped my feet before stepping on the lino, always felt signalboxes were calm but lonely places, but I have seen them when there busy, the bobby dashing around, pulling levers ringing bells, writing in the book, answering the other boxes offering trains and managing to swig a mouthful of tea all at the same time. A timeless memory.
manna
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StevieG
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by StevieG » Sat Dec 12, 2009 10:33 pm

Manna,
Ever go to one of those boxes where the signalman was so protective of his shiny floor, that for Rule 55, you were commanded to stay at the door or on the mat, and told something akin to 'I'll bring the book to you'.

[ Hope you were never 'up on the mat' (summoned to see the guvn'r, or his guvn'r, or worse still, the Superintendent, about some infringement or misdemeanor.)! ]
BZOH

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manna
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by manna » Sat Dec 12, 2009 11:33 pm

G'Day Gents
No I never had one that bad, but I've had a few that gave me a look that could have killed me on a very wet nights, when you were dripping all over the floor and book???

I did end up on the carpet-- twice, once for the collision at Harringay (see Memories) and once for accidently making a cap (from a cap gun ) go off, in the main booking hall at KX about three weeks after a IRA bomb went off in the booking hall, it was 3am and it echoed through the whole of the station, the booking office staff were'nt happy :oops:
manna
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Bryan
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by Bryan » Sun Dec 13, 2009 8:45 pm

Ever go to one of those boxes where the signalman was so protective of his shiny floor, that for Rule 55, you were commanded to stay at the door or on the mat, and told something akin to 'I'll bring the book to you'.
Not for Rule 55 but I have had it when acting as PICOP, ES and Tech on a filthy night shift covered in mud.

Not really surprised as my wife was of the same opinion when I got home.

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R. pike
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by R. pike » Thu Feb 18, 2010 11:34 pm

StevieG wrote:Relating to a mention re (telegraph) pole routes in a post of recent hours in the "Green Arrow" topic in this "LNER Photographs" section, just thought I'd share this pic.amongst us [no Green Arrow ((no locos!)], -
- pole routes feature here (there's one along on the left - clearer if enlarged - but also there's slight indications of one on along the on the right as well!) - New Barnet's south end, looking south, approx.1968. [This is an old scan, done on a Minolta Dimage Elite Scan 5400 film scanner, so takes no heed of the good tips in previous 'Green Arrow' posts.]

This just in...

http://richard2890.fotopic.net/p63372351.html

(relates to the photo at the start of this thread..)

AndyRush
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by AndyRush » Fri Feb 19, 2010 12:17 am

Seeing as how this coincided with me scanning some New Barnet bridge photos, here is one of them: looking north across bridge No.43, which has just been renewed, 09.02.1937. Or it would be if I could figure out why the photo is not uploading. I'll have another go soon

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R. pike
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by R. pike » Fri Feb 19, 2010 12:38 am

Sounds interesting..

AndyRush
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by AndyRush » Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:00 am

I think I've got it now. I was trying to upload a tif and the dozy machine didn't seem to tell me that I was having a senior moment (or hour...)

Andy
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R. pike
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by R. pike » Fri Feb 19, 2010 10:20 pm

I found this rummaging round the net..

http://thenorthernheights.fotopic.net/p56887117.html

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52D
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by 52D » Sat Feb 20, 2010 12:14 am

R Pike, I dont suppose you know how the brick arch was demolished as the NER simply put a suitable girder through the span and attached a crane to either end of the girder and hoisted. The structure usually just collapsed as the arch is not designed to take an upward force.
Hi interested in the area served by 52D. also researching colliery wagonways from same area.

Bryan
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by Bryan » Sat Feb 20, 2010 6:12 pm

52D wrote:R Pike, I dont suppose you know how the brick arch was demolished as the NER simply put a suitable girder through the span and attached a crane to either end of the girder and hoisted. The structure usually just collapsed as the arch is not designed to take an upward force.
See DVD Fastline films vol 3 Behind The Scenes Civil Engineering

Ferrybridge Flyer
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by Ferrybridge Flyer » Wed Feb 24, 2010 9:27 am

Manna,what the hell were you doing with a cap gun at The Cross? :lol: :lol:
Bring back Ferrybridge station!

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Flamingo
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Re: Pre-modernisation Scene

Post by Flamingo » Wed Feb 24, 2010 4:16 pm

AndyRush wrote:Seeing as how this coincided with me scanning some New Barnet bridge photos, here is one of them: looking north across bridge No.43, which has just been renewed, 09.02.1937. Or it would be if I could figure out why the photo is not uploading. I'll have another go soon
This view of the curve at New Barnet brought back memories. It didn't change much in the years I knew it, though the gasworks closed in the mid-1960s. On the down side of the station there was a public footpath from where one sunny evening long ago I remember seeing two successive up expresses coming round that curve, both hauled by brand new Peppercorn A1s in BR Blue. My memory tells me one was 60128; I'm less certain of the other one but possibly it was the next in the class, 60129. Both were then without names. A1s looked right in that livery, I just hope the Tornado people carry out their plan to paint 60163 blue at some stage in the future. It wasn't often I watched from the station footbridge at New Barnet, most of the time I would have taken the cinder path which led northwards towards Greenwood. One hot afternoon when I was up at Greenwood on the bridge there a big lineside fire was started by a train going up the 1 in 200 and soon the undergrowth and trees on both sides of the line were blazing away nicely. Probably this was not an uncommon occurrence, but you could feel the heat from where we stood on the overbridge. This was decades before the invention of mobile phones so I was dispatched back along the cinder path to New Barnet to warn someone. The only place I had quick access to was via the footbridge to the booking office, but the bloke on duty showed no interest at all! On returning to the Greenwood overbridge it turned out that someone (probably the Greenwood signalman) had called the fire brigade and the blaze was under control.

Well, enough of that. Here's a signal box picture for you, Woodburn Junction near Sheffield, late 1970s. A decent sized GC type box I think. We were invited in as a steam special was due.
WoodburnJct.jpg

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