A Signal Question for Ben et.al.

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Mon Jun 24 11:13:58 EDT 2013

Jimmy, Jim, Ben (and anyone else),
Not directly related but just an observation. My wife and I "worked" the
Roanoke Chapter, NRHS, excursions last fall. We 'car hosted' the gorgeous
Northern Pacific dome. On the Saturday Bristol trip, the three Amtrak
locomotives were run-around the train at Bristol for the return trip to
Roanoke. As dusk fell, and our service responsibilities decreased, I had
the chance to visit the dome part of our car a little more. Our dome was
the 2nd car from the engines having been toward the rear on the way to
Bristol. It was an awesome sight to see the CPLs change from green to red
as the lead unit tripped the circuit! Because of our placement in the
train, the elevation of the dome and the delay from the lead unit to our
car was perfect to put the the CPL practically I your face! I wish I had a
way to record it.
Charlie Long

On Mon, Jun 24, 2013 at 5:38 AM, NW Mailing List
<nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org>wrote:

> Jimmy,

> I worked the Shenandoah line a few years ago as a relief maintainer,

> but all the old stuff was gone before I got there. But, I know where

> you are talking about, and I'm aware of that type of situation. The

> Bristol line also had several staggered automatics. Basically, it

> would depend on how the engineers drew up the signal circuits. While

> I'm not certain, I would expect that once the head end of the train

> passed the opposing staggered signal and knocked down the next track

> circuit to the south, then the signal would have dropped to

> restricting. The ones I witnessed in action on the Bristol line would

> drop shortly after the head end passed the governing signal,

> regardless of whether they were staggered or not. I can't really

> answer why that particular one signal didn't drop. I would have

> expected it to.


> If I saw that happen today, I'd be calling the maintainer!


> Ben


> On 6/23/13, NW Mailing List <nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org> wrote:

> > /"//Maybe it has to do with where the signal is placed versus where the

> > block actually begins. Jim Nichols"

> >

> > /Jim,

> > I don't see a number plate on the signal. This would make it a

> > "Home" signal. If that is the case, the insulated joint should be right

> > there at the signal. (If this is on the Southern and is not CTC

> > territory, things may be very different. Which is why I deferred to the

> > signalmen on the forum.)

> >

> > Ben,

> > A two to four second delay would seem about normal. Most signals I

> > have seen will drop in about the time the second unit passes the signal.

> > There was one exception that I did notice years ago.

> >

> > Before the signal changeover, there was a southbound intermediate signal

> > at about mp H146.3. We had just left Waynesboro after picking up and

> > setting off. South of the siding at Dupont, I noticed a handbrake

> > sticking and walked up to the lead unit to get the engineer to stop the

> > train. When we did stop, we had just past a clear signal at H146.3 by an

> > engine and a half. I walked back, removed the sticking brake and on

> > return to the head end noticed that the signal was still showing clear.

> > I thought that very odd, but, figured that since it was an intermediate

> > signal (and at that time northbound and southbound intermediates were

> > staggered and hardly ever side by side) the block joints may be

> staggered.

> >

> > In the past few years, changes were made in the rules governing

> > single unit moves as to block occupancy in order to protect a move that

> > for whatever reason didn't shunt the track.

> >

> > Jimmy Lisle

> >

> >

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