Switch Stand

A little history

── An early form of switch stand, commonly known as the “harp” pattern, consisted of a straight lever held upright in a harp-shaped frame, carrying a target on its upper end, the connecting rod being attached to the lever either above or below the pivot point of the latter. This simple device furnished a cheap and reliable means for holding and throwing the switch rails and, during daytime, showed plainly enough the position of the switch, since, when set for the side-track, the lever had to be thrown out of its normally vertical position. It was not, however, adapted for a conveniently arranged switch light, for which reason it long ago went largely out of use on main line and other tracks where night indication of the position of the switch became important. Old stands of this pattern are now sometimes seen in yards, and in a few instances it has been fitted with an attachment for a switch lamp and is used on main line, such being the case on some parts of the Baltimore & Ohio and Baltimore & Ohio Southwestern roads. This attachment usually consists of an upright rod carrying the lamp, the rod being revolved by means of a crank in gear with the lever or with the main connecting rod.

From Notes on Track: Construction and Maintenance, Volume 1 by Walter Mason Camp published 1904

From the quoted text then, by 1904 this type switch stand was already considered obsolete and “long ago went largely out of use on main line” .. and .. “Old stands of this pattern are now sometimes seen in yards“.

With that in mind though, I thought that perhaps it would have still been in use on narrow-gauge lines (such as On30) and with a little prompting from a friend I decided to see what i could do via 3D printing.

O scale Harp Switch Stand

Version 1 Actually this is anything BUT a Ver 1 – I went through various different designs but since this is the first one I have had printed I will go with calling it that. In the photo I colored … Continue reading

G scale Harp Switch Stand

Initial I posted a pic and link to my progress on my O scale Harp Switch Stand to Facebook. One of the responses was from Phillip Blancher – “Could these be scaled up to G-Scale? I need G-Scale Harp stands … Continue reading


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