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Limerick Junction track layout/ signalling plan 1975-85

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Junctionmad
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Hi folks, Im a newbie, new to this forum, but am thinking of returning to the hobby after many years absence. I'm on the fine scale end of things, but all the new Murphy Models stuff has me drooling.

 

Im thinking of doing a version of Limerick junction in around the period 75-85, centred on 1980. This is a period where I passed though the station regularly on the Limerick Waterford run, ( park-royals and 141's) . As many have said looking back this period was the heyday of loco hauled stock, and reasonable freight traffic. (even though at the time it was all doom for CIE,if I remember)

 

Im not going to attempt to re-create all 1500 feet of platform, obviously that will be shortened in the model and arranging the waterford crossover is a challenge ( getting the track back around etc )

 

Couple of things people might be able to help, excuse all the questions, I was thinking of joining the IRRS etc as to see what they had ( anyone know if their journal featured Limerick Junction)

 

(a) Anyone have track diagrams from around that time , essentially very few mods were done to LJ, until recent rationalisation, with the exception of the addition of the "limerick curve ". While I have the basic track layout from pictures and memory, Im unclear as to the exact arrangements on the East side ( engine shed to headhunt etc )

 

(b) I have most of the signals sorted, several questions remains

 

b.1 I seem to remember a coloured light facing each way on the platform ( mounted under the canopy roof) , midway between the old 1 and 2 platforms, protecting the scissors crossing and acting as a starter signal. I see evidence of it in photos around the nineties, but less evidence in earlier ( 1983) photos, I know the old starter signal which poked through the canopy roof was long gone by the late 70s.

 

 

b.2 The colour light gantry on the Dublin end of platform 1 , was added some time after 1983, I have photo evidence wasn't there in 83, just the tubular starter signals for dub and limerick lines. There was a ground mounted colour signal shown at that time, adjacent to the 'Up' Line , I think maybe the gantry replaced this ( sight lines etc ) Any Ideas?

 

b.3 I have one picture of the signals south of the road bridge, ( three home signals,) , but has any one any definitive signal layouts of photos of the approach to LJ from Cork.

 

b.4 I have the few coloured lights sorted , except memory fails me as to the distant signals , protecting "Keanes " points, and also the UP and Down distance, I presume these were all coloured light as was typical on CIE at the time.

 

b.5 the southern/eastern aspect of the north box is often photographed. Has anyone any pictures of the west and north aspects , I also can't remember where the staff transfer platform was for the water ford line, my memory is it was just north of the cabin , but can't place it

 

b.6 photos of the south signal cabin are rare , I have only a few long shots . any sources anyone knows of.

 

 

Heres a few operations questions.

 

 

There was a connection between the platform 4 ( waterford bay) and the mainline, at the end of platform 4) yet I never saw it being used, ( yet the rails were shiny ) , Did it ever get used and what was its purpose ( maybe it just acted as a loco release)

 

Ive never heard a convincing reason why the bizarre layout of LJ came into being. was there a good historical reason

 

 

As to the model.

 

I think LJ offers fabulous modelling opportunity, ( And I don't know if its been seriously attempted , but it must have been ), Its offers lots of engine runarounds. Shunting in an era of block trains, plenty of through traffic, even obscure Permanent way stuff was often there. For me the signalling is fantastic, with many roads signalled in both directions !! ( not to mentions loads of shunting signals)

 

Right now Im just trying to build sources of information ,pictures, accurate track plans and signalling layouts

 

Im thinking of EM gauge as a half way house to 21mm. Ive build an awful lots of fine scale track in the past , and really think Im past that, thinking of using C&L fine scale EM track, Wheel flanges could then remain as 00, allowing tighter curves, which may be necessary to get the layout to fit. all DCC from the get go.

 

 

And A final question, This would make a fabulous club layout ( DCC etc ), is anyone considering a new layout for a club,? has anyone attempted this layout in fine scale or pseudo fine scale with a approximate track plan.

 

 

Thanks, in anticipation

 

 

dave

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Not sure how that would work, I mean the direct curve joins the passing loop very near the limerick end, effectively forcing trains to hold on the direct curve, and there is evidence that on occasion that was done ( IPRS rail tour for example) I can't really see what the passing loop was for, other then to provide a Limerick to Junction train to wait for a train the opposite way to get by. i.e. its was a passing loop for the Limerick line rather then anything specific to the "direct curve"

 

Trains did, and still do get held on the direct curve all the time and the curve is long enough that they can do this without fouling the Dublin - Cork main line. See signal P7 in this shot.

http://jandjcottrell.zenfolio.com/p228051995/h2ffaf7d8#h2d9da195

 

The loop (I think it's called the pocket loop??) was effetely a passing point on the Limerick to Waterford line and would have got more use when the Limerick to Waterford route had a lot more freight, and just happened to be where the direct cure ended.

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Can someone help me in interpreting these signal layouts. Im not an expert on colour light and its seems from the installation of the direct curve, most of the north box was converted to colour light.

 

Whats the purpose of the three aspect lights that seems to be indicated on these diagrams, was the third colour yellow, any photos of a typical CIE colour light of the time. Studioscale seem to have a design, is that representative

 

I understand the third colour was white, from the top was it green white red , what did white mean !

 

Screenshot 2014-09-03 10.40.42.png

 

 

Thanks , Im lost with coloured lights

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As Snapper says, the arrangement at the Limerick end of the Direct Curve was to prove sufficient signaling overlap / protection so that a train from Dublin could be signaled onto the direct curve at the same time a train from Limerick was signaled either into Limerick Junction or towards Waterford. The overlap / protection was provided by the headshunt on the Limerick side of Milltown level crossing.

 

The pocket loop was to provide a passing loop on the Limerick - Waterford route without trains having to go into Limerick Jct itself. It also enabled loco-hauled trains coming off the Waterford line and heading for the Cork direction, or vice versa, to run round. For example beet trains between Wellington Bridge and Mallow.

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The three colours are green, yellow and red. White aspects are only used on shunt signals. On the diagram the green is indicated by a vertical line on the circle, yellow by a diagonal line and red is normally represented by a horizontal line. The aspect normally shown is represented by a double line, e.g. if a signal normally displays a red aspect then there would be a double horizontal line. However, in the above diagram it woul appear that the aspects normally displayed is coloured in. So, on signals 12 and 15 the dark circle was, I'd suggest, in reality coloured red and on the Auto signal (bottom left) the dark circle was yellow as it would have been a distant signal for P15.

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From what I remember from top to bottom for diagrams read

 

Vertical line = Proceed (green)

Diagonal line= Caution (yellow)

Horizontal line= Stop (red)

Second diagonal line= Caution used for double yellow on 4 aspect signals but may not be fitted.

 

so I would guess the solid is filling on for the red in that diagram.

 

When you say white do you mean like this??

If so the white lights along with the main colour show that the train is to take a diverging route.

 

TT112-large.jpg

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Thanks, sorry I do understand quite a bit, what I don't understand about three aspect lights that are used as home signals, is the "caution", usually "caution" meant the next signal was red, but where there isn't a "next signal" what did caution mean ?

 

The only situation I can think of like that would be dead end platforms, in that case the buffer stop takes the place of the "next signal" which should have been red. Do you have a specific signal in mind on the diagram so I could look at it?

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Screenshot 2014-09-03 12.38.52.png

 

Heres a nice shot from 2001, interesting the tall signal to the right is the down signal, yet its actually position next to a siding

 

The colours almost make this a model layout !

 

 

Interestingly I cant see that signal in this 1976 picture

 

Screenshot 2014-09-03 12.43.12.png

Edited by Junctionmad
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[ATTACH=CONFIG]14937[/ATTACH]

 

I also do do with help decoding signal 17 18 @ keanes and 39 40, was 39 a shunting signal ?

 

what was the purpose of the 17, 18, why two signals Im trying to find a photo

 

My reading of that would be 18 would allow you to go as far as 7 and

17 would allow you to go to 11,12,13 signal post. and 39 does look like a shunt signal.

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Is this at mill town , which way is the train pointing :confused:, sorry of course he heading into the station, shows the confused signal I mentioned previously , what is that double signal ( 17 , 18) for, on a piece of track not used :trains:

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]14938[/ATTACH]

 

To me it looks like it is coming from limerick and as you look at the photo the signals on the left would be no 8 + 9 and those on the right would be 17 + 18

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My reading of that would be 18 would allow you to go as far as 7 and

17 would allow you to go to 11,12,13 signal post. and 39 does look like a shunt signal.

 

 

 

Amazing all is revealed when you search the net

 

Screenshot 2014-09-03 14.33.24.jpg 39 isn't a shunt per say , just a starting signal for the loop

 

Interesting semaphore 36 was removed in later years , yet visible in this photo

 

Im drooling at the model signal opportunities

Edited by Junctionmad
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Junctionmad, in the Mar 1976 in your post both 36 and 39 signals are small sized semaphore signals (as was common practice) reading into the 'Pocket' loop. In the first pic in Snapper's post #54 they are both shunt signals. Snapper do you know when the photos you posted were taken? Given the presence of hi-viz vest in one of the pics I'd guess post-1976. It would be interesting to know if the signals were changed from semaphores to shunt signals as this would seem to indicate a downgrading of the loop.

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My reading of that would be 18 would allow you to go as far as 7 and

17 would allow you to go to 11,12,13 signal post. and 39 does look like a shunt signal.

 

Fascinating subject, Railway Signalling. Looking closely at 17 & 18, in all the pictures, 17's arm appears to be shorter than 18, which would suggest that 17 is a subsidiary signal. According to my book on signalling, "for shunting movements on running lines in the same direction as the normal flow of through traffic, the subsidiary signal often takes the form of a miniature arm mounted below the main running stop signal". Shunt ahead, calling-on and warning signals come into this category. To fit in with snapper's reading, I would have thought 17 & 18 would have been on a bracket, like 8 & 10.

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Junctionmad, in the Mar 1976 in your post both 36 and 39 signals are small sized semaphore signals (as was common practice) reading into the 'Pocket' loop. In the first pic in Snapper's post #54 they are both shunt signals. Snapper do you know when the photos you posted were taken? Given the presence of hi-viz vest in one of the pics I'd guess post-1976. It would be interesting to know if the signals were changed from semaphores to shunt signals as this would seem to indicate a downgrading of the loop.

 

 

Given its around the period Im interested , I do wonder when they were changed to shunt signals too, hard to tell.

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[ATTACH=CONFIG]14935[/ATTACH]

 

Heres a nice shot from 2001, interesting the tall signal to the right is the down signal, yet its actually position next to a siding

 

 

The tall signal would be in that position for sighting purposes for a train approaching round the L/H bend from the South

 

The down signal is presumably sited next to a siding and high to allow it to be seen approaching from the North not the south

 

Equally the inner home signal beside the South box, its actually situated beside the DOWN line, even though its refers to the UP line. I was always of the opinion that signals were sited next to the track they referred to , but clearly not in these cases

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Junctionmad, in the Mar 1976 in your post both 36 and 39 signals are small sized semaphore signals (as was common practice) reading into the 'Pocket' loop. In the first pic in Snapper's post #54 they are both shunt signals. Snapper do you know when the photos you posted were taken? Given the presence of hi-viz vest in one of the pics I'd guess post-1976. It would be interesting to know if the signals were changed from semaphores to shunt signals as this would seem to indicate a downgrading of the loop.

 

Would have been at the same time as CTC was extended through to Limerick, (from memory end of 1986?). One end of the pocket loop ended up in CTC territory, the other stayed within LJN's patch. The loop would only rarely have seen a crossing train by then, so full running signals weren't really needed. Shunt signals catered for freight reversal and running around from the Limerick end.

The starting signals from the Pocket loop towards Waterford are, in my view, as Snapper describes. An old semaphore practice was to have arms one above the other, rather than a bracket, particularly where space was tight or speeds were low, and you didn't need to see the relative positions on brackets from afar to safely pass the signals. In such cases, the convention is arms top to bottom, read to routes left to right. Normal signals are cheaper than brackets - money talks.

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Would have been at the same time as CTC was extended through to Limerick, (from memory end of 1986?). One end of the pocket loop ended up in CTC territory, the other stayed within LJN's patch. The loop would only rarely have seen a crossing train by then, so full running signals weren't really needed. Shunt signals catered for freight reversal and running around from the Limerick end.

The starting signals from the Pocket loop towards Waterford are, in my view, as Snapper describes. An old semaphore practice was to have arms one above the other, rather than a bracket, particularly where space was tight or speeds were low, and you didn't need to see the relative positions on brackets from afar to safely pass the signals. In such cases, the convention is arms top to bottom, read to routes left to right. Normal signals are cheaper than brackets - money talks.

 

 

Semaphore arms for me it is then !:D I agree, with CTC, I think also thats when the gantry colour light light appeared at the end of platform 1 , displacing a ground mounted version

Edited by Junctionmad
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The down signal is presumably sited next to a siding and high to allow it to be seen approaching from the North not the south

 

Equally the inner home signal beside the South box, its actually situated beside the DOWN line, even though its refers to the UP line. I was always of the opinion that signals were sited next to the track they referred to , but clearly not in these cases

 

You are, of course, right. Got my ups and downs mixed. But then life is full of them.

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Would have been at the same time as CTC was extended through to Limerick, (from memory end of 1986?). One end of the pocket loop ended up in CTC territory, the other stayed within LJN's patch. The loop would only rarely have seen a crossing train by then, so full running signals weren't really needed. Shunt signals catered for freight reversal and running around from the Limerick end.

The starting signals from the Pocket loop towards Waterford are, in my view, as Snapper describes. An old semaphore practice was to have arms one above the other, rather than a bracket, particularly where space was tight or speeds were low, and you didn't need to see the relative positions on brackets from afar to safely pass the signals. In such cases, the convention is arms top to bottom, read to routes left to right. Normal signals are cheaper than brackets - money talks.

 

Picture found on the Internet. Seems to be the signal in question, caption reads:- A pre-1925 Great Southern & Western Railway semaphore signal at Limerick Jct, controlling Limerick to Waterford trains.

 

Limerick Jct.jpg

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[ATTACH=CONFIG]14944[/ATTACH]

Looks like my photo, I'm glad I photographed them. The South cabin, as alluded to by its windows, is a very old cabin in a similar design to that of Cherryville Junction, styled almost 'house' like before the standard 'railway' style cabins became established.

http://eiretrains.com/Photo_Gallery/Railway%20Stations%20L/Limerick%20Junction/IrishRailwayStations.html#LimerickJct_20050129_025_CC_JA.jpg

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I notice a lot of signals had that orange type coloring. The reversing /call on signal on platform 4 was clearly of that orange type. Is it just faded red , I notice most of these were then painted a brighter " signal red"

 

By the way we still haven't established when the lower semaphores of the other signals went to shunt signals 83 I beleive is when the up line gantry went in.

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I notice a lot of signals had that orange type coloring. The reversing /call on signal on platform 4 was clearly of that orange type. Is it just faded red , I notice most of these were then painted a brighter " signal red"

If its the signal arms you are referring to, all IE signal arms are of that orange/reddish colour. They began painting them that luminous colour back in the early 1960s, moving away from the traditional standard red colour. More recently the texture used became more brighter and reflective to make the best of visibility from train headlights. Some arms though have faded by way of the sun and weathering, so there's sometimes an inconsistency in the shade.

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If its the signal arms you are referring to, all IE signal arms are of that orange/reddish colour. They began painting them that luminous colour back in the early 1960s, moving away from the traditional standard red colour. More recently the texture used became more brighter and reflective to make the best of visibility from train headlights. Some arms though have faded by way of the sun and weathering, so there's sometimes an inconsistency in the shade.

 

Hmmm I have seen in the 80 s both types on the same post , one a brighter standard signal red the other a faded orange. You think the orange was by design. I often wondered did it denote a signal of lessor importance, could be passed with caution

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Paint was supplied by the likes of Hendersons before technical specifications and BS standards were even heard of, so the manufacturer just had to colour match what was required. There were no long term tests done, UV exposure, or the like so paint got desaturated and broken on semaphore arms etc. It was only when the likes of 3M started supplying IR/IE with the panels on the rear of coaches, and specifications complied with EEC(at the time) and BS standards that paint had more colour fast properties.

Edited by Glenderg
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Looks like my photo, I'm glad I photographed them. The South cabin, as alluded to by its windows, is a very old cabin in a similar design to that of Cherryville Junction, styled almost 'house' like before the standard 'railway' style cabins became established.

 

Had a look at your link Eiretrains, it certainly looks like the same photo. Some other excellent pictures to be seen, including No 40, a view of this signal, and others, looking towards Limerick from the crossing. A piece of history.

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