Willis Lamm's
Traffic Signal Collection


Part Three

Traffic Signals, Inc.

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Traffic Signals, Inc (TSI) are produced by what was originally the Southern Switch & Signal Company of Shreveport, LA, who started producing signals before World War-II. Southern produced the Southern Autoflow brand as well as signals made under private labels. Around 1961 Southern's label became Traffic Signals, Inc.

The TSI signal is comparatively light weight but well constructed. Many of the components are interchangeable with similar model Sargent-Sowell signals. This particular unit was used with an external controller although the bottom plate had holes tapped in it that lined up with the mounting holes of a Southern Switch internal controller.

Manufacturer's stamp with TSI traffic signal logo.
Like the Sargent-Sowell, the TSI doors were made so that they could be easily completely removed for servicing the signal. This made preparation and painting much easier.
Doors laid out for repainting.
The signal used aluminum dish reflectors with slight ridges that snapped into place and the signal used Kopp TL-4777 sawtooth pattern lenses.
Aluminum dish reflectors.
The signal came with a pretty extensive terminal block with enough lugs so that each of the four directions could be wired to a separate phase. (The neutral or common strip is on the other side.)
"Hot" lead terminal strip.
Another feature I found useful was the span wire disconnect. It allowed me to get the mounting hardware in place and wire in the controller and then hang the signal. Thus the signal body wasn't in the way while performing the other work. On the street the use of a disconnect facilitates changing of the signal without having to struggle with stuck hanger bolts and stiff and brittle feed wiring.
TSI disconnect.
To light this signal I used an adjustable cam controller that would emulate one of the period correct display sequences that would be seen if the signal had been equipped with a Southern Switch die cut cam controller.
Adjustable cam controller.
The signal came in with a mixed bag of visors. Since the TSI visor collars are wider than most signals and are hard to come by, I decided to get a full set factory spec reproduction visors.
New visors laid out for painting.
One of the features I personally like about the Sargent-Sowell and TSI signals is the larger lens collar. You can actually see a bit of the signal between the visor and the lens.

The signal, from the Buffalo, NY region, originally came with yellow visors. I painted the visors black in this restoration in order to better show off this lens collar feature.

View of the wide lens collars.

Typical TSI installation in Buffalo, NY.

(Google Street View)

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