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Signal Box Telephones

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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby John Webb » Tue Aug 1, 2017 8:51 am

We have several lists at St Albans South signal box for the various circuits it was connected to and the numerous codes to contact other locations. (See http://www.sigbox.co.uk for forthcoming open afternoons etc.)
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby davidwoodcock » Tue Aug 1, 2017 9:48 am

Some circuits had locally agreed (but obviously unpublished) codes for things like "SM or DI heading your way". On one circuit I was familiar with it was done by inserting an extra "short" after the first part of the code, but it doubtless varied from place to place as it had to produce codes that couldn't be confused with a legit one.
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Richard Pike » Wed Aug 2, 2017 5:03 pm

Here's a nice simple circuit. To reduce the amount of ringing in a probably already busy telegraph office it has been given a 'B' ring..

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32297024@N08/35499854464/
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby OnlyMe » Fri Aug 4, 2017 9:37 am

I saw the signalbox phone for Audely End just sell on ebay coincidentally!

When i return from burning myself stupid in cyprus i'll come and see you Richard!

Cheers Paul
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Richard Pike » Fri Aug 4, 2017 5:09 pm

I missed that but then i dread to think how many phones i actually have. Here is a little item that is a bit of a mystery as to what it actually did..

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32297024@N08/36199534672/

The contacts suggest a circuit could be linked to either Shelford or Cambridge (KM) but i've not found out where it's from.
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Richard Pike » Fri Aug 4, 2017 8:54 pm

Here's an oddball..

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32297024@N08/36205741882/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32297024@N08/36205741132/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32297024@N08/36205742982/

No relay at all. The bell is directly on the line. This means it will ring whatever polarity current is presented. Also with just one button it can only put one polarity current to line.

Saying about Audley End. How about this...

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32297024@N08/36373951755/

What appears to be an obviously local circuit between the box and three sets of motor points has a little twist as it has 'train Advice' on the special ringing button. Where did this ring? It may have gone through to a control office or similar. The boundary between Liverpool St control and Cambridge control was at Elsenham.
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Fri Aug 4, 2017 9:05 pm

Richard Pike wrote:
What appears to be an obviously local circuit between the box and three sets of motor points has a little twist as it has 'train Advice' on the special ringing button. Where did this ring? It may have gone through to a control office or similar. The boundary between Liverpool St control and Cambridge control was at Elsenham.


The same code is used for all three sets of points.
Presumably only one pointsman on duty at a time, who will pick up the nearest phone if he hears the code but may not necessarily be at the points you thought he was at.
Make sure he winds the right set!
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Ashley Hill » Fri Aug 4, 2017 9:28 pm

Your oddball phone is a standard omnibus phone and very common on the western. Ring a code and the appropriate box or office answers it. Pressing the button rings all bells on the circuit and is not discreet allowing people to listen in or have 3 way conversations or indeed as many as on the circuit. They were also used as SPTs and box to box phones although in these cases as direct phones and therefore discreet. I've always understood them to be called D pattern phones.
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Richard Pike » Fri Aug 4, 2017 9:56 pm

Ashley Hill wrote:Your oddball phone is a standard omnibus phone and very common on the western. Ring a code and the appropriate box or office answers it. Pressing the button rings all bells on the circuit and is not discreet allowing people to listen in or have 3 way conversations or indeed as many as on the circuit. They were also used as SPTs and box to box phones although in these cases as direct phones and therefore discreet. I've always understood them to be called D pattern phones.


I'm putting into service as an SPT. The other end of the circuit will be a York concentrator. Plenty of umph from the box end to ring the bell and a nice sensitive reed relay so i wont need too many cells for ringing from the signal.
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby John Hinson » Sat Aug 5, 2017 1:12 am

Chris Osment wrote:Not wishing to hi-jack a thread :-), but seeing that we are on the topic of box phones, what can anyone tell me about this example please?

http://www.trainweb.org/railwest/temp/bt-tele.jpg

The picture was taken inside the former L&SWR signal-box at Barnstaple Town station circa-1930. Clearly it has a bell on the top of the case, a mouthpiece on the front of the case and an earpiece hanging on the hook on the left. There might perhaps be a second earpiece hanging by the bottom right-hand corner?

But....was this magneto or battery ringing? I can’t see any obvious magneto handle, but neither is there any obvious button to press for ringing. Not sure about the two small items to the left of the mouthpiece.

The ringing button is on the side, above the earpiece.

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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Chris Osment » Sat Aug 5, 2017 11:56 am

John Hinson wrote:The ringing button is on the side, above the earpiece.
John


Thanks - I wasn't expecting one there!
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Chris Osment » Sat Aug 5, 2017 12:00 pm

Ashley Hill wrote:Your oddball phone is a standard omnibus phone and very common on the western. Ring a code and the appropriate box or office answers it. Pressing the button rings all bells on the circuit and is not discreet allowing people to listen in or have 3 way conversations or indeed as many as on the circuit. They were also used as SPTs and box to box phones although in these cases as direct phones and therefore discreet. I've always understood them to be called D pattern phones.


Yes, I've got one just like that as well, and also understood them to be called 'D' pattern - though no idea what the 2-button one were called. I assumed that, with no relay on the line, they were more likely to be used for local circuits, where there would be a good voltage down the line, rather than for longer distances, but maybe there was no such distinction?
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby StevieG » Sat Aug 5, 2017 1:56 pm

Richard Pike wrote:
Ashley Hill wrote:Your oddball phone is a standard omnibus phone and very common on the western. Ring a code and the appropriate box or office answers it. Pressing the button rings all bells on the circuit and is not discreet allowing people to listen in or have 3 way conversations or indeed as many as on the circuit. They were also used as SPTs and box to box phones although in these cases as direct phones and therefore discreet. I've always understood them to be called D pattern phones.
I'm putting into service as an SPT. The other end of the circuit will be a York concentrator. Plenty of umph from the box end to ring the bell and a nice sensitive reed relay so i wont need too many cells for ringing from the signal.

Clear memories of these phones which I used to see in GW boxes have become a little more vague over the years as far as which had 1 or 2 buttons are concerned, but, thinking logically, might the 1-button version have been ideal, and precisely what was used, for the box-to-box circuits which I mentioned a few days ago? ; viz :
StevieG, at 22:29 on 28th July 2017 wrote:IIRC, this 'phone looks like a type which BR(WR) used to have on signal box Block shelves for discreet, direct-line communication with the next 'open' (in-switch) signal box in each direction ?

[One fond memory of those times, on the Berks. and Hants. route, was when these were used for receiving a "BOXER" (Standard Codes for Telegrams - "The following message must be telegraphed or telephoned Box to Box to............"), which would be something like "The 8.30 Padd is 20 late" (8.30 a.m. dep. from Paddington to Plymouth or Penzance), and which was then duly telephoned forward and entered in the TRB.]
BZOH

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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Richard Pike » Sat Aug 5, 2017 3:12 pm

The type without a relay is possibly not suitable for long distance circuits. Each phone has a 100 ohm bell across the line whereas the long distance sets have a 1000 ohm or greater relay.
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Re: Signal Box Telephones

Unread postby Pete2320 » Wed Aug 9, 2017 2:55 pm

StevieG wrote:Clear memories of these phones which I used to see in GW boxes have become a little more vague over the years as far as which had 1 or 2 buttons are concerned, but, thinking logically, might the 1-button version have been ideal, and precisely what was used, for the box-to-box circuits which I mentioned a few days ago? ; viz :
StevieG, at 22:29 on 28th July 2017 wrote:IIRC, this 'phone looks like a type which BR(WR) used to have on signal box Block shelves for discreet, direct-line communication with the next 'open' (in-switch) signal box in each direction ?

"Block phones" in my experience do not have bells etc of their own, the block bell itself being used to summon the other box, 1-1 or 1-2 being used.
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