The Traffic Signal Museum

Solid Body Signals

In the very early days of traffic signals, the bodies of adjustable or single face signals, were made so that they were cast all one piece. If you needed a 3 section length signal (RYG), a casting was made for this length and it would accomadate 3 doors/lenses/reflectors etc. If you only needed a 2 section length signal, a separate casting was made for that length, and also for a 1 section signal, a separate casting was needed. This was not very economical and signals were eventually redesigned to be sectional so that one casting was needed for the body and each body could be stacked to form 2, 3, 4 or even 5 section signals. End plates were used on each end of a stack of sections and rods were passed from one end plate to the other to hold the entire assembly together. After some time, the sectional design was improved upon so that each section was closed off except for a 1 1/2 inch hole to pass wiring through and a set of carriage bolts to hold each section to the next one. 

At this time, The Traffic Signal Museum has four solid body single face traffic signals, an Ornamental Eaglelux, a Crouse Hinds type T port hole, a GE Novalux, and what is now known as a single door Milwaukee signal. There were a few manufacturers who made them in the very early days. GE made one, Eagle made the Ornamental Eaglelux, Crouse Hinds had the port hole signals, Tokhiem, Harrington Seaberg and Johnson also made them. There was also the single door signal that was made for the city of Milwaukee. On this page, I will show examples of these as pictures become available.

The Ornamental Eaglelux was one of the most ornate of the solid body signals.

Here is a picture of mine as it was received. It had only one coat of paint, which was worn off in some places. The only thing wrong with it was that one of the hinges on one of the reflector frames was broken. This was easily fixed by making a new hinge and having it welded on in place of the old broken one. Other than that, there was nothing that had to be fixed on this signal.

Below are some pictures of the signal with the mounting hardware I used to mount it to the basement pole. 
The back of this signal is very ornate, which is kind of strange since the front of the signal is what traffic is supposed to see.

Below is a close up of the back of the signal on the bottom as well as the reproduction finials and the ball cross hardware. 
Also shown is the inside of the signal. The reflectors were mounted to the inside of the door instead of the inside of the body like in modern signals. 
The reflectors are very thick glass. These are in need of re-silvering at the time this page was made.
The original cloth wiring was mostly removed, so a replacement cloth wiring harness was purchased for this signal.

Here is a shot of the ID tag on the bottom of the signal.

This signal was in such good shape when it was acquired and is such a rare and ornate piece that I decided to have it professionally powder coated. I went with a hammered metal blend of silver and black which mixes into a very attractive dark charcoal color. To the left is a nice close-up showing the color and texture of the powder coating.

Finally, here is the correct lens pattern that was found in these signals when they were new. They are called #27's made by Kopp Glass.


 

GE solid body signals

Here is GE's version of the solid body signal, the Novalux. 


The Novalux is similar to the Eaglelux above in that it has a solid body, and 3 separate doors.
The Novalux uses screw on cast visors. This example has halophane aka spider web lenses.

Thanks to the owner of this signal, John C. aka Magnetboy, for use of the pictures!


Here is the GE Novalux that The Traffic Signal Museum owns.

Here is the ID tag and logo on the back.


 

Here is another solid body signal. At one time it was believed to have been made by GE because of the reflectors it uses were also used in GE signals. It is now believed to have been a "home brew" signal made for the city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It is unique in that it only has one door. All three lenses are mounted in the one door. 

This signal does not have an ID tag, so the model name (Novalux above) is not known.
This signal is very unique in that it only has one door for all 3 lenses! The lenses are Kopp 27's
just like in the Ornamental Eaglelux and are original.

Thanks to the owner of this signal, Mike M. aka Fred, for use of the pictures!


Here is a picture of the "Milwaukee" signal that The Traffic Signal Museum owns.


Crouse Hinds Port Hole

Here are 2 Crouse Hinds Port Hole solid body signals that were recently removed from service in New Philadelphia, Ohio. 
They are now stored in New Philly's traffic and sign shop. These signals have port holes for doors. 
These signals are rather plain compared to GE and Eaglelux signals.
Thanks to John C. aka Magnetboy for the pictures!

Here is a Crouse Hinds type T porthole single face signal. This signal has a one piece cast solid body with a removable face that is also one piece with the portholes mounted on it. This signal was made in the late 1920's. It came with either command lenses or large bead smiley lenses. You can put your mouse over the picture to change the lenses to large bead smileys. I was fortunate that this signal came with its original mounting hardware. It is very hard to find clam shell mounts like these that still have the back side of the clamps! Crouse Hinds Type T porthole single face

 


Here is a Tokhiem solid body signal that appeared on eBay.


Here is a Harrington Seaberg solid body signal that appeared on eBay.

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