JeffPo's Adlake Switchlamp #2 Page

Last update:  11/10/14

This is a railroad switchlamp made by the Adlake company.   This is the same model as my other Adlake lamp except this one has day targets for better daytime visibility.  It has four 4 1/2" lenses, two green and two red.  While the green lenses look aqua blue in color, they will shine a signal green color because of the yellow flame of the burner.  Switchlamps were used to indicate the settings on railroad track switches.  They were mounted to the switch mechanism and would rotate with the changing of the switch.  An arriving locomotive would know the track setting based on the color the switchlamp was displaying.  Switchlamps are quite a bit bigger and heavier than lanterns.

The fuel fount is large and round.  The burner accommodates a glass Pyrex chimney.  You gain access to it by flipping open the top of the lamp.  These were made to burn kerosene.

Here's a view of inside the lamp, looking from the top.  You can see how the outside wick adjustment knob connects with the inside burner.  It is spring loaded such that you can pull it back slightly to insert and remove the fuel fount.  Also it's extra long on this model such that it extends outside of the day targets for easy use.

Here's a timed exposure with the lamp lit.  The glow of red and green lenses are quite beautiful.  The blue lens shines a signal green, indicating that the switch is set to straight ahead.  A red signal showing would indicate that the rail switch is set to the siding.  Since there are no railroad markings on this lamp that I can find, I have no way of knowing which railroad it was used on.  

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