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Facing Point Locks


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Having finalised my track plan I am keen to try and model point rodding on my 1985 Western Region layout with traditional semophore signals. I have a double track main line with two trailing crossovers. No passenger train movement is planned over the crossovers. The crossovers are present to allow light engine and freight to access the nearby siding.

 

This raises a couple of questions,

 

1. Would the points require facing point locks as they will be crossed occasionally (non passenger) in the trailing direction?

 

2. If the crossovers require facing point locks would one lever operate both locks in together?

 

Thanks in advance.

Pete

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4 minutes ago, Miss Prism said:

FPLs are not required for your crossovers.

Miss P got in before I did. The answer is on the name, "facing" point lock. Your points are trailing for passenger traffic so not required. The railways were careful with money and did not supply things that were not needed. If there was an occasional need for passenger trains to use the crossovers (think single line working), then the points would be clipped using what amounts to big G clamps. 

It's a pity because fpls are so rarely modelled. The western placed nice covers over theirs so they are very easily modelled. The southern didn't seem to bother (not sure why) so theirs are more complex to model.

As for you second point, as far as I am aware, I have never seen 2 fpls worked from one lever in this situation, though that means someone will come along very soon with some examples.

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As already mentioned the crossovers do not require Facing Point Locks (FPLs). The only exception would be if a crossover is used to regularly reverse a passenger - i.e. it terminates on one line and starts back from that line crossing to the opposite while conveying passengers.  While this had become more common by the mid 1980s it all depends on what you are planning in the way of passenger train movements.  

 

You are perfectly at liberty to occasionally cross a loaded passenger train through a trailing crossover in the facing direction - say for Single Line Working (the usual reason).  Technically provided the point which became facing was detected by a signal (usually a ground disc) it wasn't necessary to clip the point but we invariably did so particularly when propelling something like a 10 coach passenger train back through the crossover - it's now c.50 years since an 'old hand' taught me that bit of commonsense.

 

The FPLs - it they were provided - might be worked buy a single lever but it was sometimes difficult to adjust this arrangement so the Western wasn't at all keen on it.  We had an example on a patch that I worked on (albeit on a facing crossover) and it was an absolutely b*st*rd of a lever to pull and we had the S&T forever making adjustments to it; even when they got it right it remained very heavy to work.  And and this arrangement has disadvantages when disconnections are necessary.

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3 hours ago, ikcdab said:

......As for you second point, as far as I am aware, I have never seen 2 fpls worked from one lever in this situation, though that means someone will come along very soon with some examples.

Indeed :-)  Working 2 or even 3 FPLs from one lever was not uncommon. Working the FPLs at both ends of the same crossover from the same lever was probably not so common, but certainly not unknown - I'm surprised that ickdab has forgotten Leigh Bridge and Kentsford :-) You can see an example today (COVID restrictions permitting) at Woody Bay.

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24 minutes ago, The Stationmaster said:

The only exception would be if a crossover is used to regularly reverse a passenger - i.e. it terminates on one line and starts back from that line crossing to the opposite while conveying passengers.  While this had become more common by the mid 1980s it all depends on what you are planning in the way of passenger train movements.  

 

A waste of play value if you do it this way in my view :) More fun to shunt to the other line and depart right direction.

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21 minutes ago, The Stationmaster said:

 

22 minutes ago, The Stationmaster said:

The only exception would be if a crossover is used to regularly reverse a passenger - i.e. it terminates on one line and starts back from that line crossing to the opposite while conveying passengers.  While this had become more common by the mid 1980s it all depends on what you are planning in the way of passenger train movements.  

 

It should be noted that in that situation only the point nearest the platform is used by passengers in the facing direction, so it would be fitted with an FPL, but the other end of the crossover wouldn't, so the question of locking both ends of the crossover with the same lever doesn't even arise.

 

Even where both ends of a crossover do require FPLs (perhaps a large station throat), any particular movement is either in one direction or the other, so only that facing end needs to be locked.  There would be two separate FPL levers, and only the relevant one is included in the locking of signals reading over the crossover.

 

However some diagrams show FPL levers locking two points in other situations, if they are arranged toe to toe for example (saving the cost of a lever)

 

And if points are motor worked, the FPL is built into the motor assembly so you don't have a separate lever, the point lever would be black above blue. 

 

The cost consideration isn't just provision of equipment where it isn't needed.  Odd as it may sound, it is preferable NOT to lock a trailing point - because if it is run through, the damage done to the p way will be less than if it was locked.  

 

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On 22/02/2021 at 12:46, Michael Hodgson said:

 

 

And if points are motor worked, the FPL is built into the motor assembly so you don't have a separate lever, the point lever would be black above blue. 

 

The lever should be blue above black, not black above blue - photos available if needed.

Edited by The Stationmaster
Correct typo - there not really a 'b' in lever
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I have worked FPLs on points which are toe to toe with one lever when one set led onto a passenger branch. The lock stood in with the lever normal for running in the down direction on the main line facing points. For a Down branch train the branch points were reversed the FPL lever was pulled to lock the branch points and allow the crossover to be moved for a train to come across from the Down Main. The lock stretcher on the branch points only had a hole in the reverse position so the facing crossover on the main line could only be reversed for a move onto the branch. 

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17 minutes ago, TheSignalEngineer said:

I have worked FPLs on points which are toe to toe with one lever when one set led onto a passenger branch. The lock stood in with the lever normal for running in the down direction on the main line facing points. For a Down branch train the branch points were reversed the FPL lever was pulled to lock the branch points and allow the crossover to be moved for a train to come across from the Down Main. The lock stretcher on the branch points only had a hole in the reverse position so the facing crossover on the main line could only be reversed for a move onto the branch. 

Such levers were often the key to much simplification of the interlocking for the whole layout, the term "direction lever" often being used for the FPL lever concerned.

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7 hours ago, RailWest said:

Indeed :-)  Working 2 or even 3 FPLs from one lever was not uncommon. Working the FPLs at both ends of the same crossover from the same lever was probably not so common, but certainly not unknown - I'm surprised that ickdab has forgotten Leigh Bridge and Kentsford :-) You can see an example today (COVID restrictions permitting) at Woody Bay.

chris, haha, well said. I had forgotten about LB and KD.....

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3 hours ago, TheSignalEngineer said:

I have worked FPLs on points which are toe to toe with one lever when one set led onto a passenger branch. The lock stood in with the lever normal for running in the down direction on the main line facing points. For a Down branch train the branch points were reversed the FPL lever was pulled to lock the branch points and allow the crossover to be moved for a train to come across from the Down Main. The lock stretcher on the branch points only had a hole in the reverse position so the facing crossover on the main line could only be reversed for a move onto the branch. 

Attached, typical LNERly arrangment of "Toe to Toe" FPL's. Withernsea, East Yorkshire.

CLOSE UP  WITHERNSEA Signalling 1955.jpg

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