1918 Handlan Globe Specifications

Quality control is a major feature of modern manufacturing practices, but it is not a new concept. The 1918 catalog of the Handlan Company, one of the largest suppliers of railroad lighting devices, described a whole series of specifications and tests for lantern globes. For railroad lantern collectors, these provide a most interesting insight into the practices of the era. For example note that any failure rate under 75% was considered "passing" for blue globes! Also under "Markings" note that clear and red globes had their markings "blown" (A.K.A. "cast"), but markings on green, yellow, and blue globes could be either "blown" or "sandblasted" (A.K.A. "etched"). Further note that most collectors think of etching as done by an acid process whereas these specifications refer to sandblasting.

Reproduced below is the text from this Handlan specification and testing page. Some reformatting has been done to improve readability. Click here to see a scan of the original page (362KB). Thanks to Bill Kajdzik for supplying this scan!

Lantern Globes

1. General Description -- This specification covers all clear, red, yellow, green and blue globes.

2. Kind of Glass --

(a) Globes shall be made of low expansion heat-resisting glass. (b) Colored globes shall be made of solid color glass, clear and free from opalescence.

3. Ordering -- As far as possible, globes will be ordered in lots or packages of five dozen each. The order shall specify their color.

4. Shipping -- Globes will be held at the place of manufacture until inspected, sampled and tested, and If accepted, the manufacturer will load and ship them its required by the purchaser.

5. Tests --

(a) Manufacturer shall give the purchaser sufficient notice of time when material will be ready for testing.

(b) Manufacturer shall provide at point of production apparatus and material for making required tests.

6. Boiling Water Test -- Globes shall stand immersion In boiling distilled water for two hours without showing any disintegration.

7. Photometric Tests --

(a) Globes In the respective colors tested on a photometer, shall be In accordance with the scale used in selecting the Iimits of photometric values in R. S. A. specifications for roundels and lenses.

  Light Medium Dark Extreme Variation front Medium
red... 260 200 140 30%
yellow... 210 180 150 16 2/3%
green... 125 100 75 25%
blue... 125 100 75 25%

(b) The photometric values will be taken on four sides of the test globes.

(c) If any of the samples fall to pass the photometric test, the purchaser may require any or all of the colored globes to be tested photometrically In his presence, and all globes failing to pass within the limits shown will be rejected.

8. Chilling Test - -

(a) Clear, red and yellow. In making this test the globe is placed in a hand lantern frame, the wick lighted and turned up as far as possible without smoking. The lantern Is then tilted to an angle of forty-five (45) degrees, keeping the flat edge of the flame in the same place as the flat edge of the wick and with globe so placed that the flame Is directed against the side opposite the lettering, and allowed to remain in this position for five (5) minutes for clear, and three (3) minutes for red and yellow, during which period the flame shall be regulated, if necessary, so that not more than one (1) square inch of globe surface is smoked. The globe Is then removed from the frame and while in a vertical position with the large end downward, dropped immediately into a tub of ice water, maintained at a temperature of between forty-three (43) and fifty (50) degrees Fahrenheit, care being taken that the globe does not strike the ice on being dropped Into the water.

(b) Green and blue. In making this test, the globe Is placed in a hand lantern frame, standing vertically and with the wick so regulated that the flame is not more than one inch high, or just below the smoking point, and allowed to remain for three minutes. The globe Is then dropped in ice water as described In 8-a.

(c) Number of failures in this test: Globes of the various colors, tested as described in 8-a and b shall not show breakage in excess of the percentages given below:

Clear ....12 1/2 Red .... 33 1/2 Yellow .... 33 1/2 Green .... 50 Blue .... 75

(d) Additional chilling tests: If samples fail to pass the chilling test, an equal number of additional samples will be taken for a second test, and if the average of both lots meets the tests the entire quantity will be accepted, otherwise the entire quantity shall be rejected.

9. Number of Packages Inspected -- Not less than ten (10) per cent of all packages of globes shall be examined for conformity to the requirements of this specification, Sections 12, 13 and 15.

10. Number of Globes Tested --

(a) Samples will be selected at random for photometric and chilling tests, as follows: On orders of any one color aggregating: One hundred (100) dozen, two (2) per cent of total. Fifty (50) to ninety-nine (99) dozen, four (4) per cent of total. Twenty-six (26) to forty-nine (49) dozen, six (6) per cent of total. One (1) to twenty-five (25) dozen, eight (8) per cent of total.

(b) At option of the purchaser three (3) additional globes from each lot may be required to make boiling tests.

(c) Inspection and tests may be waived on orders for less than twenty-five (25) dozen globes.

11. Furnishing Samples

(a) Samples shall be furnished free of cost and shall be in excess of the number of globes ordered.

(b) The manufacturer must submit samples of globes, showing the extreme limits of colors which it is proposed to furnish. These shall bear labels showing the photometric values, and If approved, will he kept in the office of ...................... as standard.

12. Permissive Variations -- Globes shall conform to R. S. A. drawing 1394.

Marking and Packing

13. Marking --

(a) Lettering specified in the order for red and clear globes shall have the marking blown. Green, yellow and blue globes shall have the marking either blown or sand blasted.

(b) Globes shall have the manufacturer's trade mark blown not more than one and one-half (1 1/2) inches below the top of the globe.

14. Packing -- Globes shall be carefully packed in barrels or boxes containing five (5) dozen each and marked to show style of globe, color, number of globes, weight, order, and requisition numbers and the purchaser's private mark.

15. Workmanship -- Globes shall be clear in color, of smooth surface, and have both ends finished without sharp edges.

16. Inspection --

(a) Purchaser will make such inspection of the completed product as is necessary to assure him that the requirements of the specification have been met.

(b) Purchaser may make desired inspection at all stages of manufacture.

(c) If upon arrival at destination, the material does not meet the requirements of this specification, it may be rejected and returned to the contractor, who shall pay all freight charges.

(d) If purchaser is to make inspection at point of production. It shall be so stated in requisite sheet.

17. Rejection -- Globes which do not conform to the requirements of these specifications will be rejected.

Rehearing and Freight Charges

18. Rehearing -- When tests are made at the purchaser's laboratory, samples of rejected material will be held for one (1) month from the date of test report. In case the manufacturer Is dissatisfied with results of tests, he may claim for rehearing within that time. Failure to raise a question within one (1) month will he construed as evidence of satisfaction with results of tests. The samples will be scrapped and claim for a rehearing will not be considered.

19. Freight Charges -- Rejected material will he returned to the contractor, who will pay freight charges both ways.

Notes: This information is shown on page 135 of the 1918 Handlan catalog. Thanks to Bill Kajdzik for supplying the original scan of the catalog page.