Operating Accessories (Page 3 of 8)
In addition to adding visual interest and realism to a train layout, Operating Accessories allow you operate it like a real world-railroad rather than simply running trains around in a circle.  Gilbert made 62 distinct accessories as listed on a little over seven pages of the TM Guide, not counting the variations on some of the 62.  Lionel made more under the American Flyer name.  Because there are so many, I have split them up over four web pages:

Gilbert accessories #561 through #588 are on
page 1
                           #591 through #752A are on
page 2
                           #755 through #762 are on this page
                           #766 through 785 are on
page 4
                           #787 through #23601 are on
page 5
                           #23602 through #23786 are on
page 6
                           #23787 through #23830 are on
page 7
Lionel accessories #2300 through #49807 are on
page 7
                           #49808 through 49819 are on
page 8
                           # 49820 and above are on
page 9

Unless otherwise specified, the pictures on this page are from the collection of The Upstairs Train.
#755 Talking Station made in 1948 thru 1950.
(Photo courtesy of
George A. Mostoller.)

A somewhat harder to find version had a blue roof.
One end. The other end.
(Photos courtesy of George A. Mostoller.)
The back. The guts inside.
(Photos courtesy of George A. Mostoller.)
This close-up with the needle pickup removed shows how the player works.
The record that holds the talking voices is mounted under the floor of the station.
(Photo courtesy of
George A. Mostoller.)
Here's the needle pickup, record, and turntable.
The instructions explain how the record is mounted.
(Photo courtesy of
George A. Mostoller.)

#755A Talking Station made in 1951 thru 1953. The #799 Talking Union Station replaced it in 1954.
It looks and sounds like the #755 above, but the 755A had a built-in Lockout Eliminator
so the train wouldn't back out of the station after the record played. 
With the 755, you had to lock the engine's e-unit in forward mode
if you were going to stop the train at the station.
#758 Sam the Semaphore Man with single-button control made in 1949.
(Photo courtesy of
Rick Dunn.)
Here's Sam in his shack.

Push the button and he comes out.
In addition, the semaphore changes to red and the train stops.

When you release the button,
the semaphore changes to green,
the train proceeds, and
Sam returns to his shack.

(Photo courtesy of
Douglas Weronick.)
#758A Sam the Semaphore Man made in 1950 thru 1956.  The base may be gray or green.
(Photo courtesy of
Jae Eisele.)

Like other operating accessories of the time, the A indicates a design change to improve operation.
#758A looks like the #758 but it came with two button control so you don't have to hold the button down.
The red button stops the train and brings Sam out; the green button sends Sam back and starts the train.

In addition,.the 758A had a built-in Lockout Eliminator so the train wouldn't change directions
when it started up again.  With the #758, you had to lock the engine's e-unit in forward mode
if you were going to stop the train at the semaphore.
To take advantage of this new feature, you connect the #707 Track Terminal (included) to the
Fahnstock clip connector on the base behind the toolbox, rather than to the rainbow wire.
By the way, the Fahnstock clip connector is an easy way to distinguish #758A from #758.
Here's Sam outside his house, with the semaphore flag down, indicating that the train can't pass.
(Photo courtesy of
Jae Eisele.)
Here it is with a gray base.
Look closely and you'll see the Fahnstock clip connector on the left, behind the toolbox.
It didn't come with the #696 Track Trip shown in this picture,
but you can wire a Track Trip parallel to the red button to stop the train, and
a Track Trip parallel to the green button to start it up again.
(Photo courtesy of an anonymous donor.)
#759 Bell Danger Signal with two 696 track trips, many variations: green, dark green, or black base; Tuscan shed  with yellow trim; green or black roof made in 1953 thru 1956.
(Photo courtesy of an anonymous donor.)
#760 Highway Flasher made in 1949 thru 1956.  It came with one 696 track trip.
#761 Semaphore, on a light or dark green base, made in 1949 thru 1956.  It came with two #697 track trips.
#762 Erector Two in One Whistle billboard made in 1949 thru 1950.
(Photo courtesy of an anonymous donor.)
It had two sounds, a distant train whistle and a nearby one.
Hence the name 2-in-1 and the two button control.
(Photo courtesy of an anonymous donor.)

Show me the rest of the Operating Accessories.

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If you or your friends have some American Flyer trains and would like them to go to a nice home where they'll be loved and cared for, this is the place!  Email me: theupstairstrain@yahoo.com.  See my
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On the other side of the coin, I post pictures from time to time on my
For Sale page of surplus items I have for sale.
This gallery will continue to grow and become more comprehensive as I collect more equipment, and as visitors send me pictures of the items I don't yet have.  If you have a car, engine, accessory, or set that you would like to share with the world, email me a picture:   theupstairstrain@yahoo.com.  Click here for a list of the pictures I need to complete the Gallery.

The books I am using for reference are listed in the
Bibliography page.  All the writing and all the pictures on this website are, however, my own, except where cited.  No copyrighted materials have been included and all pictures provided by others are used by permission.

Now show me:                                                                                                                                    
  
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