One old, one new signal
Central Oregon & Pacific Railroad


June, 2000 
Semaphore Replacement 
Near Central Point, Oregon

The last week of June, 2000 saw two sets of semaphores replaced with color lights on the Central Oregon and Pacific Railroad near Medford, Oregon.  This was not part of a larger Electrocode signal project but part of an ongoing program to replace semaphores in various locations as resources permit.  Instead of removing the signals, mast, base and all, this program involves removing the signal heads and shortening the mast.  Then new color light signal heads are mounted on the shortened mast and Style B case.

   Please click on the pictures  below for larger, 640  pixel, images

Last look at 4473 and 4474 intact as the crew gets to work The morning of June 27, 2000 is bright and warm as Signal Maintainers Rick Perry, Tom Hunt, Keith Rusnak and Boom Truck Operator Dave Putman begin the work of replacing one of the few remaining sets of double/double US&S Style B Semaphores on CORP.  This is the last picture taken of signals 4473 and 4474 while they were still intact.  They had stood at this location, just north of Central Point, Oregon on the Siskiyou Line, for some 88 years. 

Click Here for a picture of Amtrak's Talgo splitting these blades in 1999.

Removing wiring to Semaphore heads Rick has cut the wires to the signal head and is pulling them out of the case.  The semaphore mechanism in the upper case will no longer be used, but the relays in the lower case will control the new signal head.
Signal 4473 suspended from crane. First the ladder and then the mast are cut with a torch.  Next the crane lifts the heads and top part of the mast so that the actuating rods can be cut.  In this view, the top of the mast and ladder and the blades of Semaphore 4473 are being lifted clear of the case.
Color Light head lowered into place. In short order the color light head is lowered onto the shortened mast.  This signal head is typical of the ones the Southern Pacific used to replace Semaphores in the early 90's as well as the ones CORP has been using in its replacement program.  But, as we shall see in Gold Hill, the railroad is not adverse to using other styles of signal heads.
Semaphore 4474 suspended from crane It's twin already replaced, the blades and much of the mast and ladder of 4474 are lifted clear and lowered gently to the ground.
Removing blade from mast Care is taken not to damage the blades and light head.  Here, the upper blade is being removed from the mast for safe transportation and storage.  Unlike the semaphores that were removed last summer, these will not be left along the right of way.  Blades, pinnacles and light cases will be used to replace others that were vandalized and stolen.
Torching ladder support With a shower of sparks, Tom shortens a ladder support. 
First train past new signal heads Once the new heads are installed and connected, it's still necessary to test their function.  Rick hung around until the White City Local showed up and took this picture of the first train past the new color light installation.
Finished color light installation Looking south in the late afternoon at the color light signal heads atop Style B cases.
Semaphore Signal Replacement 
near Gold Hill
On June 28, 2000 Semaphore Signals 4597(double) and 4596 (single) were replaced with color light heads.
All images and captions Copyright 2000 by Larry Tuttle

Once again, Special Thanks to Rick Perry and the Central Oregon & Pacific Railroad

Alpha Rail Net CORP Page Signals & Signal Maintenance on CORP

This consist built on June 29, 2000
And last humped December 3, 2000