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I thought I'd list a number of the books I have found useful regarding both prototypes and models and which I have in my collection:

Prototype Information:
'Two Centuries of Railway Signalling' Geoffrey Kitchenside & Alan Williams, Oxford Publishing Co (OPC), 1998
ISBN 0 86093 541 8 Original price £24.99 but I got my copy for £15 at an exhibition

'A pictorial survey of Railway Signalling' D Allen & C J Woolstenholmes, OPC, 1991, ISBN 0 86093 435 5
'A pictorial survey of LMS Signalling' also by Allen & Woolkstenholmes, OPC, 1996, ISBN 0 86093 523 X
(There are several other titles in this series dealing with other railways/regional signalling)

'Traditional Signalling - a brief Design history' Michael A Vanns, Ian Allan, 2001, ISBN 0 7110-2811-7
(An overview of not only the 'Big Four' but of a number of their consituant companies.)

The above are large books, the following are smaller paperbacks, but still of interest:
'British Railway Signalling' (Third Edition) G M Kitchenside & Alan Williams, Ian Allan, 1975, ISBN 0 7110 0571 0
'Signalling in the Age of Steam' Michael A Vanns, Ian Allan, 1995, ISBN 0 7110 2350 6

Modelling Signals Information:
(These also contain some information on prototypes but in much abbreviated form.)

'Model Railway Signalling' C J Freezer, Patrick Stephens Ltd., 1991, ISBN 1 85260 174 4
(Now out of print, but often seen on bookstalls at MR exhibitions, swapmeets etc.)

'Constructing and Operating Semaphore Signals' **** Nicholson, 2004, Book Law Publications Nottingham, ISBN 1 901945 31 6 (This book is the first in a series 'Mainline Modelling')

'Model Railway Electronics' Roger Amos, Patrick Stephens Ltd, 1990, ISBN 1 85260 288 0 contains some useful information on control circuits for colour light signals.

Background information:
There are a number of books by signallers or former signallers which give considerable background to the operation of railways, especially the work of signal boxes. These writers are led by Adrian Vaughan who has written much, particularly on the GWR and Western Region. Also of interest are 'Signalling Days' by Harold Gasson (OPC), 'Signalman' by M Burke (D Bradford Barton Ltd) and 'Railway Lines and Levers' by Ron Bradshaw (Unicorn Books).

Official Publications:
There are various BR and other railway official publications including Rule Books, General Appendix to Working Timetables and Books of Rules and Regulations, Train Signalling Regulations and Signalmen's General Instructions and General Instructions, all of which I've picked up at exhibitions, toy fairs, swap-meets and heritage railway bookshops, usually for a few pounds. Never intended for public consumption, they again give useful background information both on signalling and railway operation.

I hope the above will be useful - please feel free to add your own choices of books to this topic.
Regards,
John Webb
 

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thank you for taking the time to seek out the information.

Is it me, or do the current Hornby signals seem overscale for 4mm?

(my lil lad's layout needs signals....the Hornby one's seem overpowering.....I have tried to seek out the old Hornby Dublo signals...which are far more robust, yet delicate...somehow i don't think MSE's finest would stand up to accidental abuse)
 

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>Is it me, or do the current Hornby signals seem overscale for 4mm?
I don't know about current ones, but the Triang ones I have from way back are very OTT and there are least two broken posts which have been repaired at some time or other. Small hands and signals don't seem to get on very well


David
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
An update to the above book list:

"Two Centuries of Railway Signalling" by Geoffrey Kichenside and Alan Williams, first published 1998.

Revised 2nd edition just been published by Ian Allan Ltd., ISBN 978 0 86093 618 3, at £24.99.

Reviewed in March 2009's 'Hornby Magazine', page 74.

Regards,
John Webb
 

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I had a word with Doug, one of our moderators, and we have pinned this Topic to the top of the Signalling sub-forum to make it easier to refer to useful books.

Besides Bob Essary's book mentioned in the posts above, another already refered to is "A hundred years of speed with safety" about the Westinghouse Company - see this topic for more detailed information.

Recently published is "Level Crossings" by Stanley Hall and Peter van der Mark, published by Ian Allan, ISBN 978 0 7110 3308 5, £19.99. This is all about level crossings from their earliest days, and of course involves signals. It is reviewed on page 75 of Hornby Magazine and page 219 of Railway Magazine in their March 2009 issues.

Internet sources include www.signalbox.org which not only has a vast quantity of information on British signalling operation and history but a forum where past and present signalling can be discussed with some very knowledgeable contributors. There are also links to a number of other signalling-related websites.

Regards,
John Webb
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Two more books to add to the list, both by Robert Hendry. Both are subtitled 'For the modeller and historian'. Photographs are mostly from his and his father's collection of colour slides taken over many years visiting boxes and railways. Both books often include external and internal views of a box, its diagram and the lever frame.

British Railway Signalling in Colour - Midland Publishing, 2001, ISBN 1 85780 114 8, £14.99 cover price.

Comprehensive look at the history of British railway signalling from railway policemen and time-interval signalling up to latest VDU systems, with a few omissions. Several early b/w etchings and a couple of b/w photos, otherwise all in colour. Includes information on signal box diagrams. Good index.

British Railway Signalling Development in Colour - Ian Allan Publishing, 2009, ISBN 978 0 7110 3362 7, £14.99 cover price.

Refers to the earlier book as 'Volume 1'! This book is laid out more by company and location than historic order and includes Irish railways. Unlike Vol 1 it lacks an index; a shame if you're trying to look something specific up.

Regards,
John
 

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Another recent addition:

A Scratchbuilder's Guide to Semaphore Signal Construction - Peter Squibb - Wild Swan - Softcover, 112 pages, 158 b/w, 55 colour illustrations. 33 drawings. £19.95

Usual Wild Swan quality and thoroughness. Not for the casual purchase, but well worth it if you are interested in signals and want to model them well.
 

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I have a number of books on signalling, including Mr. Sqibb's work, and the concepts are slowly getting through my thick skull. One thing I find fairly frustrating is that while there is a great deal of emphasis on the construction of the signal there is little in the way of how to actuate. The best thing I've seen so far is a description of the use of model airplane servos as actuators in one of the forums.

John
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Simon - Thanks for posting the information on the Wild Swan book.
John - (Brossard) - Cyril Freezer's book 'Model Railway Signalling' (see post #1) contains quite a bit of information on using relays or solenoids to operate signals, but nothing on the servos.

Regards,
John Webb
 

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** John... is there a publication with accurate drawings of UK semaphore signals from their introduction to the present day?

regards

Richard
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Richard - I'm not aware of any such book, but that's not to say there isn't one! Some of the drawings in Bob Essery's book have dimensions, the majority don't.

I suggest the Signalling Record Society and the Historical Model Railway Society may be possible sources of such information.

Regards,
John
 

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QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 5 May 2010, 14:38) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>** John... is there a publication with accurate drawings of UK semaphore signals from their introduction to the present day?

regards

Richard
Richard .... You may want to try a book called Semaphore Signals by **** Nicholson. Published by Booklaw Publications. A really good book that gives construction methods and operating procedures.
Regards Mike
 

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*** Actually Mike, John - thanks for the relplies but I just realised my brain was "off" when I made that post. far too late at night!

I really meant colour light signals!

So - I will try again!

** John... is there a publication / any books with accurate drawings of UK colour light signals from their introduction to the present day?

I am actually very OK for info on sempahores... I have ***** book, plus LMS signals plus another couple I can't recal the name of right now... and a huge volume put together by a veteran modeller of many years with high quality copies of almost everything ever published on LMS/MR/LNWR semaphores in mags too!

kind regards

Richard
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Richard - I'm not at all certain. Bob Essery's book does not contain any dimensions other than the red light being 12ft from the ground. Again SRS or HMRS might be worth approaching. Lenses for main line signals seem to have been standardised at around 9inch diameter for many years, so it may be possible to scale from photos.

regards,
John
 

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I am in the process of considering signals for the layout and have looked at various resources.

I have just received Cyril Freezers book on Model Railway Signalling and it looks like its well set out and easy to follow. I borrowed 'Signalling in the Age of Steam' Michael A Vanns, Ian Allan, 1995, ISBN 0 7110 2350 6 from my local club, but found it hard to take in.

Thanks John for the resources.
regards
Mark
 

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QUOTE (Simon Gott @ 4 May 2010, 20:06) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Another recent addition:

A Scratchbuilder's Guide to Semaphore Signal Construction - Peter Squibb - Wild Swan - Softcover, 112 pages, 158 b/w, 55 colour illustrations. 33 drawings. £19.95

Usual Wild Swan quality and thoroughness. Not for the casual purchase, but well worth it if you are interested in signals and want to model them well.

I've just bought my copy and can confirm it's usefulness, particularly as a source of information on the fine detail. Amazing array of photos, both of the prototype and of models. But not for the beginner - it perhaps can be considered as a follow-on to the "Constructing and Operating Semaphore Signals" published by Booklaw Publications and mentioned in previous posts.

Books by Signalmen:
Yesterday's Railwayman by D A Newbould, published by Oxford Publishing Co. in 1985, ISBN 0 86093 331 8
Autobiography of someone who joined British Railways in 1956 as a 'Booking Boy' and his progression as a signalman, controller and a List Clerk in his 14 years on the railway. A number of B/W photos. (Second-hand book bought for £3)

'The Worcester Patch' by Matthew W. Morgan, published by Noodle Books (Kevin Robertson) in 2010, ISBN 1 906419 21 9. £13.95
Another autobiography of more recent vintage and of someone who had a rather shorter time on the railways. Lots of B/W photos plus a small selection of colour ones at the rear of the box. The book looks at a number of signal boxes in the Worcester area with diagrams of each box at different periods in its life.

Regards,
John Webb
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
In September's 'Hornby Magazine' there is an article on Multiple Aspect Signalling and equipping an 'N' scale layout with three-aspect signals.

'Railway Modeller' for September announces that PECO are giving away a new booklet with the October issue on 'Semaphore Signalling'.

Regards,
John
 
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