Production: 1947 - 1969
The 151 Operating Semaphore was Lionel's first new trackside signal of the postwar era. It borrowed the base and pole from the 153 Block Signal, but used a new operating mechanism near the top of the pole. The 151 Operating Semaphore is a common item to locate, although variations do exist.
Features of the 151 Operating Semaphore include: black painted base, silver pole and a red ladder plus an operating semaphore on the top of the pole with a functional light and semaphore arm with a single red and green lens.
For the first two years, Lionel supplied a 153C track activator with the Semaphore. Beginning in 1949, a 145C activator became the standard track activator supplied with the accessory.
Additional Detail, Photos & Box Information
Throughout the 23 years of production, there were several minor variations to the 151 -- most of which are hard-to-find or rare.
Green Base - Some of the earliest 151s produced in 1947 have a green painted base, similar to the 153 Block Signal. This is a rare variation.
Number on Base - Since the 151 borrowed the base from the 153 Block Signal, the part number 153 is stamped on the underside of the base in 1947 and 1948. Beginning in 1949, the part number was no longer stamped into the base and all post-1948 production 151's no longer carried the part number on its base.
Black Base - Shown in the photo above - This is the common production version.
Aluminum Pole - For the 1957 year only, there was a small production run where the 151 had an aluminum pole, not the common steel pole. The aluminum pole version is difficult to locate.
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