US468787A - Signal for electric-railway systems - Google Patents

Signal for electric-railway systems Download PDF


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US468787A US468787DA US468787A US 468787 A US468787 A US 468787A US 468787D A US468787D A US 468787DA US 468787 A US468787 A US 468787A
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    • B61L13/00Operation of signals from the vehicle or by the passage of the vehicle
    • B61L13/04Operation of signals from the vehicle or by the passage of the vehicle using electrical or magnetic interaction between vehicle and track, e.g. by conductor circuits using special means or special conductors
    • B61L13/045Operation of signals from the vehicle or by the passage of the vehicle using electrical or magnetic interaction between vehicle and track, e.g. by conductor circuits using special means or special conductors using separated rail contacts, pedals or similar


(No Model.)
Patented Feb. 16, 1892.
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SPECIFICATION forming part of Letters Patent No. 468,787, dated February 16, 1852. Application filed September 10, 1891. Serial No. 405,272. (No model.)
To all whom, it may concern:
Be it known thati, FREDERIcK A. CHENEY, acitizen of the United States, residing at El mira, in the county of Chem ung and State of New York, have invented certain new and useful Improvements in Signals for Electric- Railway Systems, of which the following is a specification, reference being had to the drawings accompanying and forming a part of the same.
This invention is a system or combination of signaling devices applicable to overhead trolley systems of electric railways in whichasingle track provided with turn-outs is employed.
The object of the invention is to provide means whereby a car on runningover a turnout will set a danger or block signal in a position to be seen from a car approaching the next turn-out ahead from an opposite direction and on reaching the next turn-out will reset the said signal to safety or clear. The purpose of this arrangement is mainly to avoid the delay of cars at turn-outs from which the turn-out in advance is not visible. Under the present conditions a car reaching a turn-out from a given direction must wait until the car running from the opposite direction has come up or until its position is definitely ascertained, unless it so happen that the whole of section between it and the next turn-out be visible and no car be seen thereon.
By my improvements the engineer of a car reaching a turn-out may see at a glance if the section ahead of him is clear or blocked and proceed or wait accordingly.
In the drawings I have illustrated special devices which I have designed for carrying out the invention.
Figure 1 is a side elevation of one of the signal-boxes used. Fig. 2 is a partly diagrammatic View of a signal-box and resetting device connected in circuit, and Fig. 3 is a diagram of the track and circuit connections.
It will be understood that I am dealing with a single track, such as A, divided at in: tervals into two tracks B and G, forming turnouts for cars traveling in opposite directions to pass one another. In such systems, as is well known, the cars in passing always turn off to the right, so that all cars going in one hung by means of cross-wires F from suitable posts or supports along the track. The upper portion of the support E is formed as a box G, or the said supportis suitably joined to said box, and within the latter is contained the signaling mechanism. H is a vertical bar, which works in guides I I on the support E and in the box, respectively, and which carries a segmental plate or disk J at its lower end. To the upper end of the bar II is secured a light cross-bar K, from which are suspended by light wires or rods the colored disks or targetsL L. The bar H has two positions. hen raised to its fullest extent, the targets are concealed within the box and the bar is retained by the engagement therewith of a spring-catch M. In this position the lower edge of the disk J is approximately on a level with the under surface of the trolley- Wire. When released from. the catch M, the bar H drops, and the targets, passing down through slots in the bottom of the box, are exposed beneath it. In this position the diskJ lies alongside of the trolley-wire, its lower edge projecting downward somewhat below it. A spring N surrounds the bar H and acts as a cushion when the bar drops to prevent undue jarring. The catch M carries or constitutes the armature of anelectro-magnet O, which, when energized, draws the catch out of engagement with the bar H. P is another trolley-wire support, or it may be any other convenient device for the purposes of this invention, which carries an insulated contactspring R and a conducting-rod S, sliding vertically on the said support and having a segmental disk T at its lower end, that normally projects downward below the trolley-wire. This device constitutes a circuit-closer that is operated by the passing of the trolley.
One of the above-described circuit-closers is connected with each branch of the trolleywire at each of the turn-outs. From the contact-strip of one an insulated wire, as V, runs main trolley-wire at a point near where it diforward to a signal-box connected with the Vides for the next turn-out, and from the contact-strip of the other a similar wire runs back to a signal-box on the main trolley-wire near thenext turn-out.
The operation of the system is readily understood. The engineer of a car coming up, say, from the left to the turn-out sees that the signal-box beyond the turn-out shows the section Z between turn-outs X and Y to be clear. He therefore proceeds over the branch B, and the trolley, running under the circuitcloser thereon, completes a shunt from the trolley-wire through the magnet of the signal-box ahead to ground. By this means the targets of the signal-box are dropped and a block-signal set for any car coming up to turn-out Y from the opposite direction. As the car after passing over the section Z approaches the turn-out Y its trolley encounters the disk J of the signal-box, and, forcing the bar I-I upward into engagement with the catch M, resets the signal to showa clear line. The same series of operations is performed by each car, as will be understood, by which means the car first to arrive at the end of a section may pass on withoutany delay, while the car at the opposite end of a section and arriving later has a shorter time to wait than the one securin g the right of way would have had.
I am aware that it is common to cause moving cars to set and reset signals in various ways, and I do not claim this, broadly; but
What I claim is- 1. The combination, with a single track divided at intervals into the up and down branches of turn-outs and a trolley-wire following the line of the track and its branches,
of a circuit-closer in each up and down branch of the turn-outs and adapted to be moved or operated by the trolley of a passing car on the branch with which it is connected, signaling-instruments on opposite sides of and near the turn-outs and adapted to be encountered by the trolleys of cars passing on the main track and thereby reset or restored to indicate a clear track, and derived or branch circuits from the main or trolley wire leading from the circuit-closers on the up and down branches of the turn-outs, respectively, and grounded through the signaling-instruments at the distant ends of the sectionsin advance of the same, as set forth.
2. The combinatiomwith a single track divided at intervals into the up and down branches of a turn-out and a trolley-wire following the line of the track audits branches, of a vertical circuit-closing rod carried by a trolley wire support and located in each branch of the turn-outs and adapted to be forced upward and operated by the passage along the branch wire of a trolley-wheel, electromagnetically released signal instruments at the ends of each section of track between turn-outs, vertically-movable bars carried by trolley-wi re supports and adapted to be forced upward to reset the signal-instruments by the passage along the main trolley-wire of a trolley-wheel, and circuits from each circuitcloser to its appropriate signal-instrument at the distant end of the section in advance of said circuit-closer, as set forth.
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