Track Accessories (2 of 3)

Classification of the various kinds of accessories isn't always clear. For example, the TM Guide calls the #26810 Pow-R-Clips an Electrical Accessory, but the various Track Terminals that serve the identical function are called Track Accessories. I deviate from TM by listing the Pow-R-Clips as a Track Accessory.

In The Gilbert Gallery, Track Accessories either are mounted on the track or connect track (i.e., track locks). Electrical Accessories are whistle and horn controllers, the Lockout Eliminator, wire, rectifiers, circuit breakers, and the like. The Reverse Loop Relay and Kit defy definition and are listed both places. Accessories that are integral with track (e.g., track pins and rerailers) are listed with
Track & Switches. Track Ballast is another anomaly, listed both here and in Landscape Accessories. Semaphores, gates, and crossing signals are Operating Accessories. Track cleaning fluid is included among Supplies.

The Track Accessories are split up over three web pages:
                       #27 through #698 are
page 1
                       #704 through #713 are on this page
                       #728 and above are on
page 3

Unless otherwise specified, the pictures on this page are from the collection of The Upstairs Train.

If you have a picture that you would like to share with the world of any of the Track Accessories not shown here (or a better picture of one that is shown!), email them to me: Click
here for a list of the  pictures I need to complete the Gallery.

#704 Manual Uncoupler made in 1949 thru 1959.

#705 Remote Control Uncoupler made in 1946 & 1947.
Black housing mounted on a straight track section with black rails.
(Picture courtesy of
Mike Battaglia.)

#706 Remote Control Uncoupler made in at least seven variations, of which Greenberg mentions only five.
The TM Guide says it was made from 1947 thru 1956; Greenberg and Doyle say 1948 to 1956.

Above is the initial, short-lived design. It is not listed by Greenberg.
The solenoid housing was brass painted black; later versions (see below) were tin painted green or yellow.
Look closely at the two bars that do the actual uncoupling: their tops are bent outward; all the later versions simply have straight up bars.

David Dewey offers this commentary: “The housing is brass, painted black.
The “flared out” uncoupler bars were soon realized to be unneeded,
and the stamping was more expensive, so the straight bars were introduced.
Tin was cheaper than brass, and I imagine the green and yellow covers came about to match other accessories
or to attract Mom’s eye—Moms made many of the toy train purchases, and AC recognized that.”

Doug Peck reports that he has a couple of these with black brass housings but straight up bars.
Gilbert probably had an inventory of brass housings to use up when they changed the design.

Greenberg called this “Variation A.” Note the straight up uncoupling bars.
It has a green tin housing, binding posts for the wires, and a sheet metal strip securing it to the rail.
Those are the three things that distinguish the five variations documented by Greenberg.

Variation B is the same except the housing is yellow.

Variation C is the same as Variation A except it has wires permanently connected instead of binding posts.
All five variations came with a black-body control with a red button and white lettering.

Variation D is the same except the housing is yellow.

Variation E is the same as Variation C but it is secured to the rail by two pins rather than a sheet metal strip.

Initially, Gilbert included a piece of straight track with each uncoupler and packaged them in a long box.
If anyone has one of those boxes and can send me a picture, I'd appreciate it.

Later, no track was included and it was packaged in a small box with instructions printed on the top.

Printed on the bottom of the box was a drawing of the uncoupler.
This box was for Variation A or B – note the binding posts.

This is a later box; note that the Rectiformer instructions have been deleted.

Printed on the bottom of the box was a drawing of the uncoupler.
This one is for variation E – note the two rail holder pins.
The drawing appears to have two binding posts, but the verbiage refers to the connected wires.

#707 Track Terminal
made in 1946 thru 1959.

It is used with a semaphore,
or in some other situation that requires connection to only one rail.

#710 Automatic Track Section with two inside contact rails made in 1946 & 1947.

Operating cars made in 1946 had an inside power pickup like this.
The two inside rails of the #710 Automatic Track Section provided power to these contacts under car.

#711 Mail Pickup with two inside rails for contacts made in 1946.
It's similar to the #713 Special Rail Section below,
but has two inside rails like the #710 Automatic Track Section above rather than the outside rail of the #713.

#712 Automatic Track Rail made in 1947 thru 1957.
It was sold with a variety of operating boxcars, flatcars, and hopper cars.

Here it is with the #971 Lumber Unloading flatcar.
The car gets one side of its power from the rail connected to the transformer's Base Post.
The other side comes from the #712 Automatic Track Rail via a finger sticking out from one truck.
The wire connnects to the operating button that comes with the car.
To operate one of these cars, stop the train with the car's finger on the #712 Automatic Track Rail and
push the button.

#713 Special Rail Section made in 1947 thru 1958.  It was sold with the #718 and #918 Mail Cars.
It's identical to the #712 Automatic Track Rail except that it has an arm sticking up
to hold a mail bag for the passing mail car to pick up.
Behind it is the mail bag catcher my dad and I made from my Erector Set when I was a kid.
Unlike the other operating cars, the mail cars operate with the train moving.

The Mail Car tosses one mail bag out and grabs another off the #713 pickup arm as it passes by.

It's a wonderul thing to watch!

Notice the power pick-up finger extending out from the truck as it does on the flatcar above.

Show me the rest of the Track 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:  See my
Wish List for the items I need most.  Thank you very much.

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:  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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