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  • Topic: Train communication in the 50s vs. now

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    • August 25, 2014 3:10 PM EDT
      • Colorado Springs, CO
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      I am reading Lance Mindheim's book on operating a switching layout, and it is fantastic--best book on operation ever, imho.  Also listened to a couple of utube videos of modern switching with audio of the radio comms.  "Three step", "clear three step" and whatnot.

      So my question is, how long have railroaders been using walkie-talkies like they do now, and how have the operations changed since the 1950s?  I want to set my layout in the 50s for the usual reasons.  Would a train crew on a shortline have used walkie-talkies or hand signals at that time?  Does this "three-step" thing go all the way back to the 50s? 

    • August 25, 2014 4:09 PM EDT
      • Southern Illinois
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      The 1950's is a very evolving time of railroads as most converted from steam to diesel by 1956.  I'd think it was all done by hand signals during daylight and transferred by lights, lanterns or flairs at night and answered by whistle or horn signals.  The three step method is a safety procedure of a more modern era with voice communication.


      However, others may have a more educated answer.


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