Author Topic: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern  (Read 1169 times)

Railfan407

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Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« on: January 22, 2012, 02:32:42 PM »
 ;D
I found this at the local flea bag market for a hearty $2.00 USD! 







It's in pretty poor shape.  The main bulb socket is corroded completely out, possibly not fixable.  The rubber wrap is missing from the handle, and there is a rotten battery living inside. 

Any idea how to take it apart without breaking it?

There are no markings or insignia on it so I can't tell what road it's from.  Looks to be a fairly common light and not valuable, but I was still pleased with my $2 find! 

Could someone please explain how this was used?  I know it was used by the conductor to spot cars and whatnot but I'm just looking for a tad more info on how the different bulbs were used.

1976

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2012, 02:56:56 PM »
In modern operations, the "big" bulb is used as a flashlight and the "little" bulb is used for hand signals.

Cat Daddy

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2012, 02:57:12 PM »
That is the modern plastic kind, and they didn't have the railroad names on them. I have not seen a plastic one with the name of the railroad anyway. The clear end unscrews from the orange end, just like the lid of a jar. Either bulb could be used, but not both at the same time. The bulb in the indented area was the "spot" bulb, and other a "round" one. The spot bulb could give you a more directed beam, where the round one was more of a marker while giving hand signals. Conductors and brakemen gave hand signals to the engineer with these as well as served as a flashlight.  

Railfan407

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2012, 03:16:58 PM »
I've been able to locate several photos of them with road names on them-





Just a few examples.  Although I can find no residue of any logo on this one.  I'm still tickled to have found it.  After just a little bit of elbow grease I got the reflector cleaned up-



1976

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2012, 03:19:31 PM »
I know all the RR-issue 292's have names on them.

NSyorktown

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2012, 04:21:46 PM »
The $2.00 is a bit less than I paid for my two lanterns that I have . . . .

http://railroadcatalog.com/index.php?route=product/product&filter_name=lamp&product_id=2227

They are really handy!

CIOR

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2012, 06:30:09 PM »
I believe that is a shortline model and possibly a shortline that is pretty close by.  HINT.
At any rate, I believe that is one from the late 80's.  I can't see the side view, but the first generation of those had the flashlight housing more exposed.  Later versions had them completely surrounded in plastic I believe.
The oldest generations of those had metal bottoms and rim. 

On a funny note, anyone know how high those lanters will fly?  I can tell you pretty damn high.   ;D  Especially when someone scares the crap out of a conductor in the middle of the yard at 2am.  (no I wasn't the one scared or being scared, but did witness said lantern fly)    8)

Railfan407

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2012, 07:19:01 PM »
No short lines around here that I know of  ???

It actually cleaned up really nice.  I'm going to order a couple of bulbs for it and give it a try.  I might even get on ebay and try and get a decal with NS or CSX on it to slap on the side... :D

Cat Daddy

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #8 on: January 22, 2012, 07:36:31 PM »
Oops I so recall seeing those emblems now, sorry!  :-[

1976

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #9 on: January 22, 2012, 09:01:03 PM »
I'll vouch for the "case and base will not break", but the plastic cover over the "big" bulb will if dropped on a rail while tying a handbrake.

scraphauler

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2012, 09:06:39 PM »
I believe that is a shortline model and possibly a shortline that is pretty close by.  HINT.
At any rate, I believe that is one from the late 80's.  I can't see the side view, but the first generation of those had the flashlight housing more exposed.  Later versions had them completely surrounded in plastic I believe.


That looks to be an identical twin my genuine Central Properties (CIND/CERA/WSRY) model, issued to me in January of 1992.  It's down in the garage somewhere along with other misc. tools and supplies I've accumulated over the years.

CIOR

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2012, 10:24:37 PM »


That looks to be an identical twin my genuine Central Properties (CIND/CERA/WSRY) model, issued to me in January of 1992.  It's down in the garage somewhere along with other misc. tools and supplies I've accumulated over the years.

That was what I was thinking.  Looked like the ones the CERA guys used (figured the same for CIND).

Railfan407

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2012, 04:50:35 PM »
It works!  slapped a new six-volt battery in and both sockets work.  I need to get a new bulb for the other side.

Now, can anyone give me a link or an idea as to how the light was used for signaling by the conductor/brakeman/switchman? 

CIOR

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #13 on: January 24, 2012, 05:11:13 PM »
Pretty good start here

http://campsilos.org/excursions/grout/two/train_signals_lg.gif

most guys don't know hand signals anymore.  take away the radio and they are lost.   ;D

Twitty

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2012, 05:15:36 PM »
“The human brain is like a railroad freight car -- guaranteed to have a certain capacity but often running empty.” ~ UNKNOWN

morreylew

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #15 on: January 24, 2012, 09:00:36 PM »
Contact a railroader 50 yrs. old or more and they should be able to show you all of the tricks. LEW

scraphauler

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #16 on: January 25, 2012, 01:12:05 PM »
Now, can anyone give me a link or an idea as to how the light was used for signaling by the conductor/brakeman/switchman?  

If it's an old Central light, it probably was really never was used for signaling - we had radios, and when those didn't work we just quit until we found a good radio  :P    I used mine for switch lists at night - the bulb in the indented area was used as a spot light to find reporting marks/numbers, and as a general flashlight for walking around in the yard in the dark, and the other bulb was a dimmer light for reviewing/looking at/writing on the switch list.  Light also made a good projectile to hurl at the house cat sized rats roaming around 5 and 10 story at Seagrams!

Railfan407

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #17 on: January 25, 2012, 01:16:51 PM »
I see.  I wish I knew the stories this lantern has seen.

Here's a neat website on signaling in the old days-
http://www.jeffpolston.com/lantern.htm


Railfan407

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Re: Flea market find- Starlite 222 lantern
« Reply #18 on: January 25, 2012, 07:20:43 PM »
Found the digits "207 63" stamped on the bottom side of the pry-out cover.  Not sure if that's just a serial number or maybe something the RR put there.