Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

Post here items relating to Hornby. Including all their subsidiary makes.
User avatar
Chops
Posts: 679
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2018 8:11 am
Location: El Paso, Texas USA
Contact:

Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#1

Post by Chops »

Sold a kidney, and picked up this charming Class 71. Vaguely recall seeing something like this back in '67, and had to have it. Now that I've got it, it comes with a bewildering packet of signs of which I am not familiar. Any advice where they should be correctly placed and what exactly do they signify? Is Super Glue OK for the job? Lovely piece, really hate to foul it up.

Image

Image
Then a packet of these buffer beams, which I assume replaces the usual coupler assembly? That I shall pass on, as I do not typically replicate the coupler linkage.
Image
Attachments
IMG_20210306_184930.jpg
IMG_20210306_184930.jpg (408.39 KiB) Viewed 1573 times
Mountain Goat
Posts: 1138
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2018 12:57 pm
Contact:

Re: Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#2

Post by Mountain Goat »

Ah. They are for the headcode boxes. They are "Half headcodes". The full headcode would be a number, a letter and two numbers, so one would have the first number which would be the type of the train, the second one would be a letter showing where it is going to, then the next two numbers were the individual service so signalmen and railway staff could identify individual services, and not embaris themselves like I did once as a passenger guard and took over a train and announced all the stations the teain will be stopping at on its long haul route, and I found all my passengers making a run for the doors grabbing their luggage. Puzzled I asked where they were all going? I had just got on the wrong train which happened to be half an hour late. Oops!
Now before 1977, all train headcodes were displayed at the front of the locomotive under the "TOPS" system, but after the "Great Train Robbery" they stopped displaying them so the information of an individual train was only known by railway staff. Your locomotive would then display the red and white "Flags" which are those square dots instead of the letters and numbers. (Red would be displayed at the back only if the locomotive was running without pulling anything and this is regardless of if it was pre-1977 or 1977 or after (The actual change date was in 1976).
It was the front of the train which would display these white flags instead of a letter and number. The Southern Region had these flags. All the other regions displayed 0O00 with the second character being a letter from around 1977 to 1979 when they eventually displayed two white dots instead which were lit from behind just as the characters used to be.
Now the two character headcode displays were an abbreviated form so the signalmen and the staff would "Fill in the gaps" themselves. They would already have an idea of the types of trains they were expecting to run past, so they did not need to see the full four characters, and anything that was not an officially booked train, like something which was extra just for that day would be easily identified with a Z.
An example of the first number to denote the type of train the loco was pulling would be a class 1 or a class 2 for a passenger train. Class 1 is the express usually booked to touch speeds of 90mph or more but not always as it depended on the max speed of the loco and the coaches were allowed to run or could run , and class 2 is the all stopping local passenger service usually booked for speeds of 75mph or below. (The max speeds between a class 1 and a class 2 service in reality actually had more to do with their ability to accelerate between stations they were booked to stop at or signals, as I have worked class 2 services at the hands of a fast accelerating railcar like a class 143 before they had the new seating with the heavy floors put in and we had one daily service following a HST and though we had to stop at an extra station or three behind them, and I was aatching the time so we did not leave early, the HST's had such a slow acceleration if they had the 8 coach formation and were fully loaded that we kept catching them up. I doubt they could get much more then 60 or 65 wile we were hitting 75mph in no time! I liked those class 143's and they were even "Quick enough" after they weighted them down with heavy floors to put in the more luxurious seats which incidentally came from the class 158's, as when the Wales and West 158's had a total rebuild, the old seats were also rebuilt and fitted in the 143's... So we ended up as a company owning the best 158's and the best 143's in the country and they also did many mechanical re-designs and upgrades too that other companies did not do and it was very noticeable when we borrowed units from other companies if one of ours was off the rails especially with 158's.
Enjoying freelance modelling in 7mm narrow gauge Feel free to ask questions relating to the Mountain Goats Waggon & Carriage Works thread.
User avatar
LC&DR
Posts: 302
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:37 pm
Location: York
Contact:

Re: Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#3

Post by LC&DR »

May I add a description of the two character headcode numbers found on class 71.

These are in no way related to the BR four character system which was used on all regions EXCEPT THE SOUTHERN.

Between the two driving cab windows at the front of every Southern Region locomotive or multiple unit was a roller blind route indicator capable of displaying two numbers, two letters or a combination of both.

Timetabled Passenger trains, especially those composed of multiple units, usually had a headcode composed of two numbers, and this indicated the ROUTE.

Freight trains had a headcode composed of a number and a letter. This also indicated a route.

Special trains could carry headcodes made up from letters or numbers, which would be published in the special traffic notice with the train running times.


Image

The Golden Arrow from Victoria to Dover carried headcode 46.


Image

This oil tanker train had headcode 1D

Other Southern trains hauled by locomotives carried appropriate headcodes.


Image
LC&DR says South for Sunshine
User avatar
Brian
Site Admin
Posts: 1581
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 3:49 pm
Location: SE Kent
Contact:

Re: Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#4

Post by Brian »

LC&DR is 100% correct. The Southern only used two digit or Alpha/numeric head-codes. All EMUs / Electric locos on the Southern used two digit route codes, as head codes. Four digit where never used on the Southern in the days depicted by the class 71 model as head codes! To suggest otherwise is not correct at all.
At each end of a Southern loco or EMU etc where Illuminated roller blinds (Illuminated by up to six filament lamps behind the blinds) these had letters and numbers plus a white strip and a red strip per blind. Two blinds per end. Rear of loco / EMU would have two red stipes illuminated. Front would be white letters or numbers or blank white stripes when out of service.
Two digit Head codes were route dependent. The web site links below show the codes used and then the numeric ones.
Alpha.. https://sremg.org.uk/headcodes/eheadcod ... des09.html
Numeric.. https://sremg.org.uk/headcodes/eheadcod ... des06.html
Dual Numeric.. https://sremg.org.uk/headcodes/eheadcod ... des06.html
Four digit Headcodes were never used on the Southern, until (Guessing) around very late 1970s or early 1980's but I'm not sure when the transition took place?

This is a typical EMU headcode ...Typical EMU headcode image
Typical rear end vies of a EMU headcode box showing the red blinds https://docbrown.info/docspics/london/L ... g_6379.jpg
Another view of a Class 71 Headcode https://transportsofdelight.smugmug.com ... -M6GTmRD/A

Note, the OLE (Pantograph etc) was only used in sidings where third rail was too dangerous to install. As Shunters etc could easily trip over the third rail and electrocute themselves! So 750 volt DC overhead was installed in all major sidings and the Class 71 could switch between third rail 750v and OLE 750 volt when working in sidings. The class 71 were eventually replaced by ED locos and quickly became extinct and all the OLE in sidings was removed and just the mast bases at ground level were left visible!
In the early 1970's I cab rode in a class 71 from Dover Marine to Victoria checking signal sighting. It was probably one of the most exciting and memorable events that happened to me in by 43 years of railway signalling service. :D
Image << Click the Icon to go to my website
User avatar
Chops
Posts: 679
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2018 8:11 am
Location: El Paso, Texas USA
Contact:

Re: Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#5

Post by Chops »

Thank you for this excellent tutorial. It will need to be read and digested at some length before I attempt anything!
User avatar
LC&DR
Posts: 302
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:37 pm
Location: York
Contact:

Re: Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#6

Post by LC&DR »

The history of Southern Railway / Southern Region headcodes is long and complex.

It all started with the London and South Western Railway in 1915 who electrified the suburban lines out of Waterloo using the third rail system. The trains composed of three carriages had a driving cab at each end and between the two driver's cab window was an 'opal' screen lit by electric bulbs . On to the screen at the front of the train a metal stencil was clipped. The stencil showed a letter indicating the route he train was to travel.

The London Brighton and South Coast Railway also electrified their suburban lines but used an overhead current collection system energised with AC current at high voltage. The LB&SCR also put a route indicator on the front in a similar position, but instead of a stencil it was a black board with painted white numbers illuminated by a floodlight in a hood above the number.

In the late 1920s the Southern Railway electrified more of their suburban routes but on the LSWR third system and eventually converted the former LB&SCR lines to third rail as well. The LSWR style of headcode, stencils illuminated from behind was applied universally.

In the early 1930s the Southern started electrifying the main lines to Brighton, Hastings Littlehampton and Portsmouth. They realised that the letter route codes would be far too restrictive for these new services, so a new stencil type which displayed a pair of numerals instead. To avoid carrying too many stencils only one each of the numbers 0 to 9 plus a solid blanking piece. This enabled any number between 1 to 98 to be displayed, plus
0, 01 to 09 as well. However numbers which were multiples of 11 were not possible as this would require duplicate stencils. The letter codes were retained for the suburban routes.

After World War 2 experiments were carried out to use roller blinds instead of stencils. From 1951 all new stock was fitted with roller blinds instead.

Suburban routes were allocated numbers as well as letters, and depending upon whether the train was pre-War or not determined whether it had a letter or a number on the front.

In 1957 new diesel electric trains were introduced to work in Hampshire, and to Hastings. As these all had roller blinds and new route codes were needed for routes previously steam worked, many of the diesel routes were given codes which were multiples of 11.

Following experiments with the diesel electrics a red blind was incorporated into the roller blind display, and this was to be displayed on the rear to indicate the train was complete. At first this was as well as an oil tail lamp, but by the mid 1960 it was decided the oil lamp could be omitted.

When diesel and electric (and Electro-diesel) locomotives were introduced to the Southern in the early 1960s these were fitted with two digit roller blinds, but in addition to numerals letters were provided as well. Diesel and Electric hauled freight services were allocated Alpha-numeric headcodes.

Four character train numbers were allocated to Southern Region trains in the 1970s but they did not, could not, display them The four character number was used in signal boxes built after 1965 and appeared in the working timetable. However trains to and from other regions and worked by foreign locomotives capable of displaying four characters did carry the national headcode.
LC&DR says South for Sunshine
User avatar
LC&DR
Posts: 302
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:37 pm
Location: York
Contact:

Re: Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#7

Post by LC&DR »

A few illustrations:

Image

A 2Hal unit passing Otford Junction, in 1944, headcode 94 is for Victoria to Maidstone East


Image

A 3 coach suburban unit passing Otford Junction in 1944, heading to Sevenoaks, hence headcode S.


Image

A 1951 built 4EPB unit from Gillingham to Charing Cross carries headcode 42, showing it is routed via Sidcup.
Last edited by LC&DR on Mon Mar 08, 2021 10:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
LC&DR says South for Sunshine
User avatar
Walkingthedog
Posts: 3513
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:51 pm
Location: HAZLEMERE, BUCKS.
Contact:

Re: Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#8

Post by Walkingthedog »

LC, The Sevenoaks headcode is an S.
Last edited by Walkingthedog on Mon Mar 08, 2021 10:54 am, edited 2 times in total.
Nurse, the screens!
User avatar
LC&DR
Posts: 302
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:37 pm
Location: York
Contact:

Re: Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#9

Post by LC&DR »

Yes I realised it as soon as I posted it, finger trouble, now corrected, well (and very quickly) observed!

Of course "S" indicated Sevenoaks.

The letter codes were originally intended to match, so far as practical, the destination, or sometimes the route, and was intended to help passengers recognise their train, as well as help the signalling staff. As the routes multiplied it got harder and harder to match the letter to the route.

The original LSWR letters were -
S - Shepperton
H - Hampton Court
P - via East Putney
V - Waterloo to Waterloo via Malden, Kingston, Richmond (the Kingston 'roundabout')
O - Waterloo to Waterloo via Brentford, Hounslow, Richmond,

Trains going round the roundabouts in the opposite direction had a bar displayed above the letter.

More letters were added. Letter 'I' was added for the Claygate service. This allowed a famous baking company to use a picture of headcodes on the front of a line up of trains in an advertisement to be displayed in train compartments. HOVIS.

The same letters were re-used for trains starting from different London terminals.

So for example services from Charing Cross / Cannon Street used

S - to Dartford via Bexleyheath
H- to Hayes via Mid Kent line
P - to Bromley North
V - to Dartford / Gillingham via Greenwich
O - to Orpington

Other letters were used included A*, I, J, L, N, T, U, (* 'A' was in fact 'V' displayed upside down), care was taken not to use letters that might be difficult to make out at a distance, or which could be mistaken from others. Other letters such as P and J were used upside down for special workings.

A variety of bar, and dot stencils were used in a display area above the main letter to indicate subtle differences in route.
Last edited by LC&DR on Mon Mar 08, 2021 11:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
LC&DR says South for Sunshine
User avatar
Walkingthedog
Posts: 3513
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:51 pm
Location: HAZLEMERE, BUCKS.
Contact:

Re: Uuuuh, advice please, Hornby Class 71 signage

#10

Post by Walkingthedog »

I’m allowed one observation per week.
Nurse, the screens!
Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests