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1890's Lighting Question

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  • Member since
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  • From: Rimrock, Arizona
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1890's Lighting Question
Posted by SpaceMouse on Sunday, April 08, 2018 9:18 PM

Did they light passenger cars and/or cabooses back then?

Chip

Building the Rock Ridge Railroad with the slowest construction crew west of the Pecos.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Sunday, April 08, 2018 9:27 PM

SpaceMouse

Did they light passenger cars and/or cabooses back then?

 

Oil lamps

 

    

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Posted by SpaceMouse on Sunday, April 08, 2018 9:40 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
Oil lamps

So I need LEDs shaped like oil lamps. I'm thinking mini oil lamps might be a tad impractical and hard to light. 

Chip

Building the Rock Ridge Railroad with the slowest construction crew west of the Pecos.

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Posted by hon30critter on Sunday, April 08, 2018 9:49 PM

SpaceMouse
I'm thinking mini oil lamps might be a tad impractical and hard to light. 

Ha, ha, ha!

FYI, I used 0402 warm white LEDs in my early 1900s Mckeen Motor Car with 30,000 ohm resistors, one per LED, on DCC. They give off a very nice glow when seen by the naked eye. Unfortunately my digital camera makes them look way too bright so there isn't much use in posting a picture. The McKeen Car actually had electric lamps but I believe they were pretty dim.

As far as modelling the oil lamps if you want to get into that level of detail, I would try using a piece of 3/32" clear styrene rod and applying some heat to stretch the rod into the shape of an oil lamp chimney. It would take a bit of experimentation to get the right size and shape but I'm sure it is doable.

Dave

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Posted by SpaceMouse on Sunday, April 08, 2018 9:55 PM

hon30critter
I would try using a piece of 3/32" clear styrene rod and applying some heat to stretch the rod into the shape of an oil lamp chimney

And put the LED in the base? Cool idea. 

Would the oil lamps be wall mounted or on a table?

Chip

Building the Rock Ridge Railroad with the slowest construction crew west of the Pecos.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Sunday, April 08, 2018 10:08 PM

SpaceMouse

 

 
hon30critter
I would try using a piece of 3/32" clear styrene rod and applying some heat to stretch the rod into the shape of an oil lamp chimney

 

And put the LED in the base? Cool idea. 

Would the oil lamps be wall mounted or on a table?

 

Hung from the ceiling over the isle in passenger cars, with gimbled mounts to keep them level.

Hung on the walls in a caboose.

    

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Posted by SpaceMouse on Sunday, April 08, 2018 10:14 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
Hung from the ceiling over the isle in passenger cars, with gimbled mounts to keep them level.

So basically, they won't be seen in an HO old-time passenger car set a 42" off the ground. 

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
Hung on the walls in a caboose.

I'll have to think about this one. Maybe I'm already thinking too hard. I'm still a ways from running track. Lighting a caboose might be years away. 

 

Chip

Building the Rock Ridge Railroad with the slowest construction crew west of the Pecos.

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Posted by RR_Mel on Sunday, April 08, 2018 10:26 PM

Check this out.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Mel
 
Modeling the early to mid 1950s SP in HO scale since 1951
  
 
My Model Railroad   
 
Bakersfield, California
 
I'm beginning to realize that aging is not for wimps.
 
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Posted by erikem on Sunday, April 08, 2018 10:46 PM

As others have commented, 1890 era passenger cars were mostly lit by oil, though Pintsch gas was catching up by the end of the decade and a very few trains were lit electrically.

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Posted by gmpullman on Sunday, April 08, 2018 10:48 PM

erikem

As others have commented, 1890 era passenger cars were mostly lit by oil, though Pintsch gas was catching up by the end of the decade and a very few trains were lit electrically.

 

Pintsch gas was the most popular and common between 1890 and 1910. Pintsch gas was very similar to what the Coleman camping lanterns used, distilled naptha.

 Pintsch_c by Edmund, on Flickr

Incandescent lamps really didn't catch on until 1915 or thereabouts.

 Pintsch_0003 by Edmund, on Flickr

 Pintsch_0001 by Edmund, on Flickr

 Pintsch_0002 by Edmund, on Flickr

Pintsch gas lamps were relatively bright giving off a nearly white light. Much like the Aladdin caboose lamps of later years and still used in some cabooses right through the 1980s.

 Pintsch_0004 by Edmund, on Flickr

I was fascinated to find that some trains around 1910 or so had steam-driven dynamos in one of the head-end cars and power was fed to the following cars with cables between them. Amtrak's Head End Power was nothing new! 

Good Luck, Ed

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Posted by doctorwayne on Sunday, April 08, 2018 11:57 PM

Acetylene predated Pintsch gas, and the latter, when introduced, often re-used the acetylene tanks and piping, with the addition of another pressure regulator.

Here's an Athearn Blue Box steel coach, converted into a 61' wooden express car, built to match a photo of the prototype car and equipped with Pintsch gas tanks...

This one was originally an Athearn Pullman....

...also lit by Pintsch gas.

Wayne

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Posted by SpaceMouse on Monday, April 09, 2018 12:24 AM

RR_Mel
Check this out.

Holy Majoley

Chip

Building the Rock Ridge Railroad with the slowest construction crew west of the Pecos.

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Posted by SpaceMouse on Monday, April 09, 2018 12:27 AM

Thanks everyone.

Chip

Building the Rock Ridge Railroad with the slowest construction crew west of the Pecos.

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Posted by dknelson on Monday, April 09, 2018 10:09 AM

So would it be safe to assume that in the days before electrical lighting in passenger trains, someone standing outside the passenger train trackside would not really see the brilliantly lit interiors that most lighting systems provide?  

Dave Nelson

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Posted by SpaceMouse on Monday, April 09, 2018 11:35 AM

dknelson
So would it be safe to assume that in the days before electrical lighting in passenger trains, someone standing outside the passenger train trackside would not really see the brilliantly lit interiors that most lighting systems provide?  

I think Halogen lights are out. 

Chip

Building the Rock Ridge Railroad with the slowest construction crew west of the Pecos.

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Posted by wjstix on Monday, April 09, 2018 12:39 PM

Generally passenger cars would have light fixtures using either oil or gas, rather than having oil-burning hand-lamps hanging up. In some cases, the fixtures were later retro-fitted for electric lights, although some later had both. (My dad, born 100 years ago - April 1918 - grew up in a house with electric lights that still also had working gaslight fixtures too.)

Except for producing a yellowish light, from the outside at night it wouldn't look that different from a car with electric lights. Keep in mind many modellers use lights in their cars and buildings that are way too bright, so picturing a model car with electric lights may look different than the real thing.  

Stix
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Posted by rrinker on Monday, April 09, 2018 4:17 PM

 On my railroad, oil lamps were used in the cabooses well past my era. Same with the markers. Batteyr operated markers came before they put electric lighting in the cabooses.

 My plan to light a few of them, I will use a function decoder with a flicker effect to represent the oil lamps at the conductor's desk. An SMD LED and a piece of clear sprue should make something that looks enough like an oil lamp.

                              --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by gmpullman on Monday, April 09, 2018 7:23 PM

rrinker
 My plan to light a few of them, I will use a function decoder with a flicker effect to represent the oil lamps at the conductor's desk.

Lots of cabooses were fitted with Aladdin Caboose Lamps.

 Aladdin_1 by Edmund, on Flickr

This is the best photo I could find of one of mine.

I've collected a few of these. They have a leaf-spring shock mount that helps reduce shock. They burn with a fairly bright, maybe equivalent to a 35 watt incandescent, light. Not far off from a bright-white LED but more on the greenish side rather than blue. They use a woven incandescent mantle.

I burn K-1 kerosene in them and with the wick properly trimmed, there is hardly any flicker at all.

Many of the ones I've seen in cabooses have had the shade "customized" with thin aluminum flashing or even tin-can metal to provide more shielding of the light.

Still, some of my lighted cabooses are very dimly lit as the crew would usually want to preserve night-vision.

http://www.jeffpolston.com/aladdin.htm

Thank You, Ed

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Posted by Little Timmy on Monday, April 09, 2018 8:00 PM

This photo show's my combination/caboose marker light's . They are lit with a grain - of - Rice light incerted into the center of each one. The Green / Red lense's are painted with transparent colored paint on the backside.

   I plan on doing something similar to the interior light's . Oil lamp's with Chimmny's, hanging from the celing.

This was my take on Oil / Acetylene lamp's .....

Your milage may vary ...

Rust...... It's a good thing !

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