This improvement in signal lights is especially intended for steamboats. In our engravings, Figs. 1 and 2 represent vertical sections through the wheelhouse. In them, E F and G II represent portions of the main shaft. In Fig. 1, I J is a stout iron or wooden post fastened against the side of the wheelhouse directly over the main shaft. On the upper part of this post is fitted the move-able arm or bracket, N 0. To the main shaft is fitted the bevel wheel, S, and to the lower end of the rod, a b, is fitted a corresponding wheel, T ; U is a small pinion on a b, which gears with the spur wheel, V, which in turn gives motion to the wheels, P and Q, and so revolves the lamp, R. It will be seen that a rotary motion is given to the lamp, when the main shaft is in motion and a b connected. It can be disconnected by a lever acting between the bosses, X, which will elevate the rod in the guides, Z Z Z. Fig. 2 is another arrangement for the same purpose. In this, K L represent a hollow shaft on which is firmly fastened the arm, L M, on which is the lantern. The hollow post is secured to the wheelhouso by the straps, K and B, and it can turn freely in them, the other parts being the same as in Fig. 1. The lever, K W, when drawn down, will turn the frame I in any required position around the shaft, c U. In Fig. 1, the arm or "bracket, N 0, may be operated by cords from the wheelhouse, but in this device the rod, c U, does not lift up as in Fig. 1, but in its place the lower end is made square, and on it slides the short tube, d e, shown in Fig. 3. The lower end of the rod turns on a bridge, f g, spanning the main shaft. On the upper end of the tube, d e, a lever is attached by means of boxes and collars as shown in Fig. 4. This lever when raised carries with it the beveled wheel, T, thus disconnecting the searing apparatus.
This article was originally published with the title "Improved Signal Lights" in Scientific American 13, 13, 100 (December 1857)