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Thread: Me & My CPL Signals

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
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    Gaithersburg, Maryland, You Ess Of Eh.
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    Default Me & My CPL Signals

    What the hey, here are some not so current pictures of my B&O color posistion light signals, both are GRS peices.

    The dwarf came from Frederick Jct MD, and has been re-wired and restored for indoor display. I have a transformer that knocks down household 120v -ac to the 12 volts the signal needs. The transformer turns it into direct current, although it could work on alternate. I have it wired show all aspects illuminate at once.



    The mast signal and double lunar sets came from the OML, from points unknown. In the shots, one lunar set is together, the other was in "kit" form so it would fit in my car. I started working on the kit first, since it was already apart.

    Some of the lenses are cracked in the photos, and they've since been replaced with new clear lenses. The mast signal head is the old steel kind, not the newer aluminum crap.... so she's very heavy.

    Everything works, they came straight off the railroad, literally.

    To recap, I have the dwarf, and enough mast signals to do an absolute interlocking representing one near my house. I have the main head, and two sets of double lunar targets, making for four lunars total.

    It's rare to have lunars, it's rarer to have a double lunar set, and very rare to have two double lunar sets!

    On with the pictures!



    Main mast head. The clear aspect at 6 oclock and the approach aspect at 7 oclock have cracked clear lenses in the photo. They've been replaced.



    Here is the mast head and one of the double lunar sets.



    Here are the two lunar targets that bolt onto steel members to make a double lunar set.



    Two of five steel peices that make up the double lunar assembly. They're made of thick steel, and each peice is easily 20 lbs. Bolted together, it's a multiperson lift.



    Another shot of the double lunar set that was already together. Double lunars are something I sought after very much...much rarer in collectible status than just singles...which are elusive critters on their own!


    Dwarf vs mast signal heads.


    Dwarf vs lunars.... are the lunars really big, or is the dwarf really small????



    Heather thinks CPLs are hot. :)



    Me and my mast head CPL.




    I bought the dwarf in January, and the mast CPL in June. These pictures are from when I first brought it home. Now their being cleaned and painted. I'll have to take shots sometime in the future to show how good the parts look after sanding and priming-painting.

    The large CPL was very hard to obtain, and is something I've wanted to have for a few years. Trust me, I had been looking for that entire time. What also makes it hard is the rate CPL signals have fallen in a short time. The past few years, CSX has been relentlessly replacing these signals.


    I obtained the signal legally from a "middle man" that had some cronies in CSX. My "pusher" helped local MoW crews with somethings and they left him...no lie, just about all the signals on the entire subdivision when they were taken down.

    They dropped every signal, intact, at a secret location for my freind to load onto his flatbed trailer. He then slected his favorites, and sold most of the rest.

    Included in the price, I also bought a signal mast.... yes, the mast. But I couldn't convince my folks to have it in the yard...even just keeping it there until I move out.

    Not surprsingly, the masts were a hard sell for my freind, and he has tons of them sitting on his property with no takers. If he dosen't have a miracle soon, he says he'll spare some parts, but have to scrap the rest.

    Hope you've enjoyed, feel free to ask any questions.

    -Jeffrey

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Lexington, KY
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    Default RE: Me & My CPL Signals

    off topic: you guys clean up well.

    That large signal is just that, Large!

    James

  3. #3
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    May 2006
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    3,938

    Default RE: Me & My CPL Signals


    Nice pictures, good catches there. As a signal guru and nut, am I supposed to be jealous of the signals, or Heather? ;)

    The "white" marker lamps are warm white, not lunar white. They're the natural color of the incadescent bulb.

    For everyone's information, the masted CPL signal face is 4 feet across. The dwarf is "really small". :)

    I strongly suggest you completely dissasemble and then sandblast all the parts when you go to clean them up. A lot easier, and a lot better results!


  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default RE: Me & My CPL Signals

    those are nice. forget about wanting a traffic light, I want a CPL.:P I never realized how large those things are before. I thought they were maybe a foot or two in diameter, not 4 or 5! i'm just curious. I'm not too familiar with CPLs, but I do know a bit about PRRs position light signals, that just used white lights to show the positions of a semaphore. Now, isn't there normally a center light, or do CPLs not have these? also, what would be in the blank spots? obviously lights, but like, what colors, and to display what kind of aspects. One more question, what is the purpose of the "Lunar Light" I've never been quite sure what that's supposed to mean. like the difference of a straight green, and one with a lunar light. but again, those are very nice shots, and beautiful fixtures. I'm glad you can get your hands on them, because when the day comes that we only see these stacked tri-colors that CSX is replacing the CPLs with, there will still be some for people to enjoy in the hands of collectors.
    Thom
    <b><font size=1><font color=Navy><a href=http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t159/CRQ5508/Random%20Stuff/CRQ5508.jpg target=_blank>http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t...ff/CRQ5508.jpg</a></font></font></b>
    Norfolk Southern: It looks like Darth Vader on rails to me.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Default RE: Me & My CPL Signals

    CPL signals very well explained:
    http://www.alkrug.vcn.com/rrfacts/si...igrules_BO.htm

    American signaling very well explained:
    http://www.alkrug.vcn.com/rrfacts/signals/signals.htm

    CPLs have never had a "center light". CPLs evolved from position light signals but are different in many key ways. (The links above can explain.)

    And again, the marker lamps are not lunar white! :) But the restricting lights on them main circle are lunar white. (None of FURX's signals have them--they're blanked out.)








  6. #6
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    Default RE: Me & My CPL Signals

    ok thanks for those links.
    Thom
    <b><font size=1><font color=Navy><a href=http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t159/CRQ5508/Random%20Stuff/CRQ5508.jpg target=_blank>http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t...ff/CRQ5508.jpg</a></font></font></b>
    Norfolk Southern: It looks like Darth Vader on rails to me.

  7. #7
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    Default RE: Me & My CPL Signals

    Clear lense vs lunar white.



    As for sandblasting, it's just not practicle for me right now. The signal is being torn down to the light housings, and the contacts being soaked in vinegar. That plus alot of sanding is working just fine.

    The blanks on the mast signal for the restricting are trash, and I'm having new ones made. Some of the smaller hardware, such as the nut/washer/bolts that held in the blanks disinergrated to the point of breaking when I tried to loosen them. There are lots of 6-32s allover this thing that are in fine shape.

    Included in my purchase of the signal, I also have all new hardware for the large components and u bolts that harness the assemblies to the mast.-Jeffrey

  8. #8
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    Default RE: Me & My CPL Signals

    Oh, some of the other peices that are total junk are the insulating gaskets that run around the edge of the aluminum rings holding in the out (clear) lenses. They've erroded into oblivion. This must have happened some time ago, as the gaskets were replaced by some CSX head with electrical tape. They took the tape, and looped it around the edge of the clear lenses a dozen times or so, leaving me with a nice black, sticky, residue from years of baking.

    Pass the goo gone.

    That and a couple of the aluminum rings were bent, so I have a few ones in better shape that came from parts-sources from the dealer.

    Later on, looking ahead, the protective aluminum domes that sit on the back of the light assemblies are beat up and dented. Trying to figure out how I'm going to "un-dent" them... since aluminum melts at a low temp, maybe I'll have to heat up the dents and bend them back into the bowl counter??

    So for anyone who wants a CPL, or other large signal... be prepared for lots of work...and that's after jumping through hoops with CSX just to save one!! It can be done, but it takes effort for a good final result.

    -Jeffrey

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    Hudson, North Carolina.
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    Default RE: Me & My CPL Signals

    Lets see more shots of Heather.
    Check out my website if you get a chance!

    www.JoeyBowman.net

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Akron, Ohio, United States.
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    Default RE: Me & My CPL Signals

    Gotta Love those CPL's

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