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Writing from the USA, so excuse the ignorance.  Pictures of signal boxes, especially in Big-4 era, often show a bar or rod across the face of the upper level windows.  Was this standard? Purpose??, etc.  (basically it looks an easy way to improve the looks of a signal box kit on the layout.)

 

George

North Carolina

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Rails around the veranda and rails across the window are both there to stop you falling off whilst cleaning the windows, the latter by holding onto the bar with one hand whilst cleaning the window with the other.  You can decide for yourself whether cleaning windows one-handed makes you more or less likely to fall off ! 

 

They will not stop you falling out of the window, generally being fixed at just the right height to bang your head on rather than lean against. 

 

Window washing to be carried out using parrafin and newspaper, none of this newfangled soap stuff. 

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5 minutes ago, Wheatley said:

Rails around the veranda and rails across the window are both there to stop you falling off whilst cleaning the windows, the latter by holding onto the bar with one hand whilst cleaning the window with the other.  You can decide for yourself whether cleaning windows one-handed makes you more or less likely to fall off ! 

 

They will not stop you falling out of the window, generally being fixed at just the right height to bang your head on rather than lean against. 

 

Window washing to be carried out using parrafin and newspaper, none of this newfangled soap stuff. 


Plenty paraffin as many BR boxes remaining using such til closure.  To think I got an hours overtime every other week to fill and trim the lamps at West Blyth yard in the 1980’s.

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31 minutes ago, dibber25 said:

On GWR boxes, the black iron railing around the lower part of the windows allowed the signalman to lean out for token exchange without leaving his box. (CJL)

Colnbrook token exch.jpeg

Looks like ColnbrooK!

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18 minutes ago, Michael Hodgson said:

I've yet to find a signal box with a bar.  

Signalman can expect to be sacked if he fails drugs & alcohol test whilst on duty!


It’s not like they need any encouragement to fall asleep....

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On 21/02/2021 at 19:07, ardbealach said:

More likely to protect the bobby from falling when they cleaned the outside of the windows, standing on the decking. Alisdair

And here is the window cleaning in progress.

1612886770_72-508-SARWuizenberg.jpg.95d39c6b5ab25a5493fb0ac87f05502d.jpg

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9 hours ago, Michael Hodgson said:

I've yet to find a signal box with a bar.  

Signalman can expect to be sacked if he fails drugs & alcohol test whilst on duty!

About 1966/67 I was working on the equipment in a long-since gone box in the Birmingham area. At lunch time the bobby got a bottle of stout out of his locker and opened it on the pub-style bottle opener screwed to the blockshelf. A few minutes later the DSI walked in. The bobby calmly got up, took another bottle from his locker and handed it to the DSI who went to the blockshelf and used the opener.

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10 hours ago, dibber25 said:

On GWR boxes, the black iron railing around the lower part of the windows allowed the signalman to lean out for token exchange without leaving his box. (CJL)

 

That's a far more sensible height. This was my first box, we didn't clean the windows very often.

20210223_173606.jpg.dd445b8a709a9ae04e0cfd733246750f.jpg

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9 hours ago, TheSignalEngineer said:

About 1966/67 I was working on the equipment in a long-since gone box in the Birmingham area. At lunch time the bobby got a bottle of stout out of his locker and opened it on the pub-style bottle opener screwed to the blockshelf. A few minutes later the DSI walked in. The bobby calmly got up, took another bottle from his locker and handed it to the DSI who went to the blockshelf and used the opener.

Well he wouldn't be much of an inspector if he couldn't even open a bottle of beer!

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11 hours ago, TheSignalEngineer said:

About 1966/67 I was working on the equipment in a long-since gone box in the Birmingham area. At lunch time the bobby got a bottle of stout out of his locker and opened it on the pub-style bottle opener screwed to the blockshelf. A few minutes later the DSI walked in. The bobby calmly got up, took another bottle from his locker and handed it to the DSI who went to the blockshelf and used the opener.

Back in the '90s I had arranged a  day visiting the 'boxes at Shrewsbury and on my arrival was met by a local Inspector who took me round the first three 'boxes befre leaving me on my own to head off to Abbey Foregate.  When we went into Crewe Bank 'box the Signalman was heavily engaged in the sort of small scale engineering typical of his kind although he wasn't following the more common practice of mending watches but was busily fitting the valvegear to what looked like a Comet chassis kit to go under the suitably improved body of a Hornby streamlined Duchess which was lying on the table.  The Inspector wasn't quite sure what to say until I congratulated the Signalman on his handiwork after which the atmosphere rapidly improved. 

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