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Hammer & Sickle Image Soviet Lamp Post Hammer & Sickle Image

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About This Accessory

Every Stalin-era and Khrushchev-era train set produced by the Soviet Union in the 1950's and 1960's included three (stand-alone) gooseneck-type lamp posts. These silver-painted and rather-ornate street lights were made of metal with a glass globe covering a 13.5-volt bulb. When energized, the design from the lines cast into the glass helps produce a very unusual glow. This item was first made in 1951 and after undergoing two design changes in its history was last produced in 1969. The Soviet sets also included a beautiful passenger station which incorporated most of the parts of the gooseneck lamp on each of the two front corners.

Photo of three different Lamp Posts
Photo of 3 Lamp Posts
Left & Center: Early style - - - Right: Later style


--- Early Style (1951-1957)

The early-style Soviet lamp posts have a relatively plain base and pedestal which are similar to the base and pedestal of the early-style block signals. Although the overall design appears to be a simple one, a close examination reveals many individual parts which resulted in complicated manufacturing and assembly operations. The base, pedestal and pole were separate parts that had to be swaged or fused together plus the lamp socket had to be wired to the terminal block. In addition, the terminal connection block was attached with screws and the light itself consisted of a glass globe, spring and metal collar -- all of which had to be twisted onto the lamp cover! Two different designs of the early-style lamp posts have been found:

--- First Generation (1951 only?)

The first generation, early-style Soviet lamp posts have a base that is 1/4 inch high, a pole and pedestal that combined, totals 8 1/4 inches to the decorative ball and an overall height of 10 1/8 inches. The gooseneck tube -- which holds the lamp housing and glass globe -- is threaded through the collar that is attached to the pole and ends in a fancy downward-pointed cone. The light socket wire is partially exposed as it goes through a slot in the collar which holds the gooseneck tube. Three of these first generation, early-style lamp posts were found in a 1951 "pre-production" set and appear to be very rare. Curiously, the first generation lamp posts were depicted in the very first instruction manuals and continued to be shown until the later-style lamp posts were illustrated. In other words, the second generation, early-style, stand-alone lamp posts were NEVER SHOWN in the catalogs! (The second generation, early-style lamp posts, however, were shown in the illustration of the passenger station starting with the instruction manual dated September 23, 1958.)

--- Second Generation (1951? - 1957)

The second generation, early-style Soviet lamp posts have a base that is 3/8 inch high, a pole and pedestal that combined, totals 8 1/4 inches to the decorative ball and an overall height of 10 inches. The gooseneck tube is threaded through the collar and is fused into the pole. This design allowed the light socket wire to be hidden from view. A one-piece decorative ball and cap sits on the top of the pole.

The early-style lamp posts -- which only came in Stalin-era sets -- were still being produced in the first quarter of 1957 and possibly for several months after that. The earlier (plainer) lamp posts are much harder to find than the later ones.

--- Later Style (1958-1969)

The later-style Soviet lamp posts have a fancier base and pedestal as compared to the early-style lamp posts. (The later-style base and pedestal are similar to the base and pedestal of the later-style block signals.) The design change resulted in a more attractive accessory as compared to the earlier one and -- since the base and pedestal on the later-style lamp posts were cast or molded parts -- it also simplified the manufacturing and assembly operations. Although the wiring and the rest of the assembly operations described above remained the same, it had to be a less costly item to make. The overall height is 9 7/8 inches -- slightly smaller than the early-style lamp posts.

The later-style lamp posts came in the later Stalin-era sets and all of the Khrushchev-era sets. The later-style lamp posts have been found with a 3rd quarter of 1958 date but initial production may have started a few months before that. They were first depicted in the September 1958 instruction manual.

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This page is an information document only; nothing on this web page is being offered for sale. This page and all of the other pages from Our Soviet Archives were developed to assist you in understanding the components of the train sets produced in the Soviet Union during the 1950's and 1960's. These sets are known today as "Stalin-era" sets and "Khrushchev-era" sets. We have used pictures from our old files and personal collection to construct this area of our website. If you are interested in buying something, please view our inventory listings to see what we currently have for sale.

This web page was last updated on September 9, 2005. If you have suggestions for improving this page or if you see any errors, please contact us.

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