THE SIGNAL BOX

LEVER FRAMES

BRITISH RAILWAY LEVER FRAMES

Ransome & Rapier lever frames

ransome & Rapier lever frameRansome & Rapier lever frame

The heavy engineering firm of Ransome & Rapier entered the signal contracting field as early as 1870, producing this incongruous locking frame which was quickly nicknamed the "horserake" or "mowing machine" type.

It was designed on the basis of simplicity and ease of maintenance, but clearly no thought was given to the ease of use by the signalman, nor the cleanliness of his clothes.

The locking is located horizontally in the slots along the front of the frame, and driven by curved bars attached to the levers.

Large numbers of this type were not built, and the majority went to the Great Northern Railway. Few survived into recent years, although the example shown here, installed second-hand as late as 1897 was Furness Railway owned. It survived until around 1980.

This example is at Vickers Gun Range Siding, more details of which can be found in the Photo Gallery.

Index to this section