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Milwaukee Road track signals and other train control devices?

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Milwaukee Road track signals and other train control devices?
Posted by The Milwaukee Road Warrior on Saturday, December 14, 2019 8:34 AM

Question for those who might know: I have a few Morning Sun books on the MILW RD that give me some ideas of what the RR used for signaling, but I'm wondering if anyone can add to what I've found.  Looks like semaphore, wig-wags at crossings even into the 60s from what I've seen.  I don't know much at all about signals or how they were used and have not researched this topic yet.  

I imagine that much of it would be the same as was used on any Class 1 RR in the 1950s, but I've also read enough to know that certain carriers used their own types of signal devices.  I think Norfolk and Western was one that tilted signal heads or something?..

I'm not trying to necessarily be absolutely correct/specific in terms of what MILW used in the 50s, but I want to at least incorporate the correct types of devices for that era.  From what I can tell, overhanging mast arms were not used until maybe the 60s or even 70s.  

Anyone have a good resource that would generally layout the types of devices used at given times?

Andy

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Milwaukee native modeling the Milwaukee Road in 1950's Milwaukee.

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Posted by dehusman on Saturday, December 14, 2019 9:49 AM

The rule book you would probably be looking for is the Consolidated Code of Operating Rules.  The 1959 edition is very common on E-Bay.  It covers the MILW and several other roads in the upper mid-west and west.

Signals can vary by territory, with some areas having one type and other areas having another type.  I would refer to photos of your areas of interest and era to see what was in use.  The 1959 rule book does not show semaphore signal indications, just color light.  You will have to refer to photos or the historical society for the brand of signals or how the masts were arranged.

Dave H. Painted side goes up. My website : wnbranch.com

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Posted by gmpullman on Saturday, December 14, 2019 1:53 PM

dehusman
The rule book you would probably be looking for is the Consolidated Code of Operating Rules.

Here's a 1967 edition if that fits your operating era:

http://www.gn-npjointarchive.org/GN_Misc/ccor_1967.pdf

— and 1939:

http://wx4.org/to/foam/maps/1rule/books/ConsolidatedCode/1939ConsolidatedCode-Habegger.pdf

If you are modeling an earlier era, here are some pages from a 1917 Milwaukee Rule book:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/mark_vogel/sets/72157609075306340/

As far as train control, The Milwaukee Road used some form of Automatic Train Control for passenger trains from 1947 through the 1970s between Chicago and St. Paul. Railroads were limited to a Federally mandated 79 MPH speed limit unless there was some type of ATC/ATS installed. I believe the Milwaukee Road used some type of cab signal system to comply. Your books may state which system they used.

Hope that helps, Ed

 

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  • From: Central Iowa
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Posted by jeffhergert on Saturday, December 14, 2019 3:35 PM

I don't think the OP is talking about the signal aspects.  I think he's asking about the signal equipment.  The aspect in the rule book, for example-green for clear, is the same for a search light type signal or a color light type.  The rule book doesn't tell which style was used, or where.

For the signalled lines in Iowa and most of lines east, what I've seen in person or pictures were searchlight type signals.  On the western lines color lights types were used.  Originally, semaphores were most likely used on the early installations.  What was used on later new signal projects or replacement would reflect the preferences of the signal department at the time.  

Train order signals might be semaphore (upper quadrant is all I recall ever seeing in person or picture for the MILW) or color light type.  On branch lines some had the 'swift' style.  A single red board with a lantern.

If you're modelling a specific place, you're best bet is to seek out people or pictures that reflect how things were in the era you model.

Jeff 

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Posted by The Milwaukee Road Warrior on Saturday, December 14, 2019 6:26 PM

Ed I'm starting to wonder if there is anything you don't have at your fingertips!  I will review the links you sent.

Jeff, nice to see another central Iowan here.  And to clarify, I just want to make sure that I'm reasonably accurate when I purchase crossing signals (wig-wags or crossing gates?) and then signals along the tracks.  I don't know the technical names for them but one older kind stands on a single pole while some are mounted on a large overhead "truss" that spanned all the tracks.  I'm sure there were other kinds I don't even know about.

Andy

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Milwaukee native modeling the Milwaukee Road in 1950's Milwaukee.

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Posted by The Milwaukee Road Warrior on Saturday, December 14, 2019 6:42 PM

jeffhergert

I don't think the OP is talking about the signal aspects.  I think he's asking about the signal equipment.  

Correct.  I need to figure out the proper equipment first Smile

Andy

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Milwaukee native modeling the Milwaukee Road in 1950's Milwaukee.

  • Member since
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  • From: Central Iowa
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Posted by jeffhergert on Saturday, December 14, 2019 8:15 PM

Here's a type of crossing signal the Milwaukee used in some places.  A year or so ago, at the either the city or county garage in Jefferson, Iowa, a crossing signal like this (missing the stop sign) and the distant signal (semaphore permanently positioned in the 45 degree angle) sat for a few months in their storage area.  Then they both disappeared. 

A Milwaukee branch line crossed the CNW (now UP) main line at Jefferson.  South of town it's now a trail, with the MILW depot restored at the trail head.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Griswold_Signal_Company

A short simulation on how they work https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qnst4UyCpB4

Jeff 

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Posted by gmpullman on Saturday, December 14, 2019 10:05 PM

A photo from one of the Flickr photographers I follow:

 Here Is a Unique Interlocking Tower -- 2 Photos by Marty Bernard, on Flickr

 Some More Milwaukee Road F-units -- 5 Photos by Marty Bernard, on Flickr

 MILW 86A (F3A) at the County Highway KE crossing about a mile and half east of Hartland, WI in December 1964 by Marty Bernard, on Flickr

Chicago and North Western favored this horizontal configuration. I can't seem to get used to seeing these.

 Signal 142 in Berkeley, IL on January 1979 by Marty Bernard, on Flickr

Some railroads used different signal apparatus on different divisions. NYC mainly used GRS type G west of buffalo and searchlight type SA in the east.

This site has some very interesting documentation of many signal types:

http://www.rrsignalpix.com/documents.php

Including a booklet of drawings of the Griswold crossing flasher:

http://www.rrsignalpix.com/pdf/Griswold_Prints1_sec.pdf

And the catalog of parts:

http://www.rrsignalpix.com/pdf/Griswold_Manual_ocr_sec.pdf

Good Luck, Ed

 

 

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Posted by The Milwaukee Road Warrior on Sunday, December 15, 2019 8:57 AM

gmpullman
Chicago and North Western favored this horizontal configuration. I can't seem to get used to seeing these.

They also ran on the wrong side of a double main - the left.  Laugh

(In their defense, it was due to the sequence of station building before adding a second main line...)

Andy

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Milwaukee native modeling the Milwaukee Road in 1950's Milwaukee.

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