Insulators in Action 2005
A Trio of Trebles, October 2005
Taken from a roadside above Buxworth near Manchester, this installation looks quite new but still retains brown high voltage insulators as opposed to the more modern blue / grey variants.
The top boss has the wide wire groove slot and the now mandatory anti interference black coating.
The centre spindle is raised on a lifter bracket to give greater clearance over the top of the pole
With the massive decrease in insulator laden telepgraph poles it is becoming clear, high voltage electricity installations are the only way see a great variety of insulators in use, though I erge extreme caution and respect when studying such installations and in no way do I encourage people to get within close proximty to such things
A modern digital camera with built in zoom is more than capable of providing an image which can be studied at leisure and in safety
A Cadbury Collection, September 2005
This pole based at the Bournville factory of Cadbury's, Birmingham, is practically lost amongst a mature hedge
There is a total of 4 small shackles on this single bar, 2 per side. Expansion of the fixing bolt and wire remnants have caused the shackles to crack and as such they are of passing interest only.
A faint impression is just visible on the bottom shackle but it is unrecognisable.
A Mid Wales Pole, September 2005
This rural telephone pole near Cynghordy, Mid Wales, typifies what was once common place.
The insulators, small GPO terminators, are no longer used but unlike the rest of this cable run, remain intact. In fact looking at the pole it becomes clear that it has been changed from a chamfered ridge top to flat top but the insulator ridge bracket has simply been reused and nailed crudely to the new pole. This suggest that the wires were, until recently, still attached to the insulators.
Severn Valley Railway, September 2005
A trip down the Severn Valley Railway from bridgnorth to Kidderminster gave me the opportunity to note the pole route still in situ for the northern section of the line
This termination pole situated at bridgnorth itself has a fine collection of Potheads.
Other poles along the route included both telegraph and power supply wires. These power supply wires using red standard cordeaux line insulators, red pothead terminators and both large and small red terminators
Other than white variants of the above, no other type was noted
The pole route was missing in sections and where the line side clear, no downed poles were seen.
This close up view demonstrates the variety to be seen.
Short and the much rarer tall pothead screw tops are present, single and double groove variety's
Examples of the three main insulator manufacturers, Bullers, Taylor Tunnicliff and Wade were noted.
Crewe Open Day, September 2005
On a visit to Crewe Works open day these shackles were spotted at Crewe Station situated near the top of each platform partition wall
The wire would have appeared to pass through the wall via an iron conduit, then attached to each insulator before continuing on across the running lines to the next partition or down the partition wall, possibly providing power for platform lighting etc
Mid Wales, September 2005
A recent windmill installation has required several runs of overhead power cables and a new substation.
One run in particular caught my eye with its pale blue insulators. The top shed consists of several ribs creating a multi ribbed effect before continuing down to a bell shaped bottom shed.
Newent, Gloucestershire, August 2005
A short of run of 4 poles within the grounds of a large house illustrates what can still be seen, tucked away in remote or hidden areas even within our towns and cities.
Image one is at one end of the run, the power wires terminate and head underground at this point. Attached also to pole in a lower position is a nice GPO pothead in use only as an anchor for the modern telephone line.
Image two shows the continuing power lines supported by P1600 insulators and two spools anchoring a power feed to the nearby church.
Image three is the fourth pole in the sequence and the other end of the run. Tapings are taken of here for nearby buildings and again we see the plain spools and traditional shackles in uses.
Of note is the copper finial still attached to the steel pole.
Image four was taken from underneath the pole to highlight the plain spools on these poles.
A Rover Legacy, August 2005
A recent trip to Longbridge, Birmingham, to see relatives resulted in a road journey which passed the Rover car factory. I happened to spot this lonely example gracing one of the entrances to the site. A quick chat with the gate man granted permission to take these couple of images.
American insulator classification has this down as a U-1671, 3 inches high and 2.675 inches diameter and these dimensions certainly suit the observed item.
It was too high to reach, so its maker and any markings remain unknown.
Update, September 2005
A recent visit to a fellow collector has revealed the probable manufacturer to be EOA, the Electrical and Ordnance Accessories Co Ltd, Birmingham.
This brown GPO terminator and pothead sit high above a residential street, on a chimney breast, their job done. The accompanying telephone wire has been re fixed to the fascia board when a new pole was erected.
Originally 2 un insulated wires where used, usually being terminated by 2 potheads prior to entry into the house.
This has at some point be changed to a twin core insulated wire and simply tied off on the top insulator before dropping into the house and an internal junction box.
GelliFelen, June 2005
This slightly overhead shot was taken from the side of the Clydach Gorge at Gelli Felen looking down with aid of zoom to a minor supply line in the valley bottom.
Broken examples found at the base confirm the blue suspensions to have been made by Allied Insulators, a company formed in 1959 by the joining of Bullers and Taylor Tunnicliff.
Cardiff, Allied Steel & Wire, May 2005
This pole stands alone at the edge of the Cardiff bay end of the vast Allied Steel and Wire complex. A remnant from earlier days when the railways connected with every dock crane, warehouse and other goods handling facilities. A small yard shunters hut is still in residence at the base of the pole but a large modern railing fence prevents a closer look.
A total of 17 insulators and a few fragments remain. The pole contains mixture of standard post office patterns and Terminators all originally in white, (honestly, they are white underneath the grime), some have the earlier, extended inner shed suggesting they are pre 1948.
Close inspection of the original photograph, reveals that out of the potential 17 insulators, 14 are possibly still complete.
Two close up shots of the pole in question
The Forest of Dean and a Steel pole route, February 2005
Deep in the heart of the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, a mains voltage pole route cuts through this Royal woodland in a North South alignment.
What makes this pole route unusual other than the fact that there are two separate pole routes running side by side, is the construction of the poles themselves. Constructed entirely of a singular steel tube with bolted steel steps and crossbars.
The main wire insulators are a more modern composite ceramic design with eight sheds and fixing bosses at either end cemented directly to the insulator body.
Standard glass, 11000 volt suspensions are used at wire joins or change in direction.
Close up shots of the Forest of Dean steel pole