ACL Switch Stands : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

What type switch stands were used by the Atlantic Coast Line and are there any models available that are a close match? Thank you for your help.

-- Pierce Dickens (, January 06, 2005


Pierce : Mainline switch stands at pass tracks were about six feet high, or about the height of a man. Made by Union Switch & Signal they were of the type with a round metal handle about the size of an ordinary water pump handle that curved down and out about waist high to a man. In order to throw the switch, it was first necessary to unlock the switch lock which held the lever in a locked position. After unlocking the switch lock, it had to be removed from the hasp which was holding the lever in the down or locked position. The switch lock could not drop to the ground, as it was fastened to the switch stand by a length of chain from which it dangled until needed again. Once the lock has been removed, the switch stand lever is pulled up and outward to clear the wratchet holding it in place, and

is then turned toward the track to move the switchpoint nearest the switch stand away from the stock rail thus aligning the switch for a diverging move. THe switch target on top of the switch stand is better sketched than put in words, but the target shows a round green target when lined for the mainline, whereas the target for a diverging move is red in color with one side having beveled edges, while the other side has an inverted "K" look with the appearance that a piece shaped like a piece of pie has been sliced out of it. Here again a picture would be worth a thousand words. For night indication, some switches still had a kerosene switch lamp mounted on top of the target which would display the same color by night that the target below it displayed by day. Many of these lamps were displaced in later years by a reflector which would light up by the beam of the locomotive headlight.

-- Bill Sellers (, January 06, 2005.

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