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Date: 01/08/19 07:51
Solaris boards
Author: HB90MACH

since most dont know what they are,  i will start there.    Amtrak, and many of it predecessors,  had train schual boards that were giant rollodexes basically.   They would roll over to show progress. Like arrival or departure times. On time  or late and destination. The old version of what you see in commuter and passenger stations today.      Well. There is one remaining in 30th street station here in Philadelphia.  But not for long.   This one will go to the PA railroad museum.   One of three left in service.    Only. There is a lot of push back about it being changed out for a display screen.
the constant clacking noise of the unit updating is an integral part of the station ambiance.  It is very unique. Which is why there is so much resistance to it being removed.  This has been going on for a couple of years.   Currently discussions. Are under way to build an updated version. Or retrofit this one.     The reason for replacement isnt parts.   It was updated 15 or so years ago so it has all newer mechanicals.     The replacement is becuase it is not ADA compliant. Not sure how that is.      
I havent seen it posted here about it ongoing saga. Figured i would fill in the story of this historic piece of history.  This specific one has seen two world wars from the install date i was told.

the pic is the one at 30th street



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/08/19 07:54 by HB90MACH.




Date: 01/08/19 08:29
Re: Solaris boards
Author: andersonb109

How can a arrivals/departures board have any relation to being ADA compliant?  If it does, it probably shouldn't. 



Date: 01/08/19 08:46
Re: Solaris boards
Author: PRSL-recall

This specific one has
> seen two world wars from the install date i was
> told.
>
Well, I can say this much, that back in the 1960's the Solari board at 30th St. Station Philadelphia did not exist. Train arrivals and departures were handwritten by chalk with excellent "penmanship" and legibility.



Date: 01/08/19 08:57
Re: Solaris boards
Author: ghCBNS

andersonb109 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> How can a arrivals/departures board have any
> relation to being ADA compliant?  If it does, it
> probably shouldn't. 

ADA is more than just the maneuverability of a wheelchair. It also deals with visual impairment.



Date: 01/08/19 09:48
Re: Solaris boards
Author: Dcmcrider

PRSL-recall Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> This specific one has
> > seen two world wars from the install date i was
> > told.
> >
> Well, I can say this much, that back in the 1960's
> the Solari board at 30th St. Station Philadelphia
> did not exist. Train arrivals and departures were
> handwritten by chalk with excellent "penmanship"
> and legibility.

That's no surprise, because the "split-flap" (AKA Solari) display wasn't even patented until 1965. Using the search engine of your choice you will find these things have quite the cult following.

Paul Wilson
Arlington, VA



Date: 01/08/19 11:22
Re: Solaris boards
Author: amtrakbill

I have managed the 30th St Station Ticket Office in the 70's and this board was installed in the late 60's.  We kept the chalkboard around and brought it out when the Solari board went down.

 



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 01/08/19 14:07 by amtrakbill.



Date: 01/08/19 11:34
Re: Solaris boards
Author: prr60

amtrakbill Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I have managed the 30th St Station Ticket Office
> in the 70's and this board was installed in the
> late 60's.  We kept the chalkboard around and
> brough it out when the Solari board went down.
>
>  
I beleive this is the second Solari board at 30th Street. The first was installed in the late 1960's replacing the chalkboard and a replacement was installed when the station was rehabbed in the 1980's.



Date: 01/08/19 15:19
Re: Solaris boards
Author: HB90MACH

Wonder what was meant by it seeing two wars if it was installed in the 60's.



Date: 01/08/19 18:47
Re: Solaris boards
Author: rkennedy2

I agree.  I was a kid, but I remember the chalk board as we picked up Grandma from the PRSL train from Ocean City.  



Date: 01/08/19 19:10
Re: Solari boards
Author: reindeerflame

I get the picture.  Amtrak is a nostalgia railroad.



Date: 01/08/19 20:31
Re: Solaris boards
Author: 4489

andersonb109 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> How can a arrivals/departures board have any
> relation to being ADA compliant?  If it does, it
> probably shouldn't. 

Another compassionate posting. 



Date: 01/08/19 21:44
Re: Solaris boards
Author: PHall

Choice of keep the Solaris board with all of it's moving parts that require lots of routine maintenance or replace it with a LED display that requires a weekly dusting.
Gee decisions, decisions...



Date: 01/08/19 23:11
Re: Solaris boards
Author: coach

I thought I read that the new digital board was made to "look like" a Solari board whenever the digital displays changed.  Digital flapping screens, and with a Solari sound!  I remember reading about that.  It was done to keep everyone happy.



Date: 01/09/19 08:52
Re: Solaris boards
Author: joemvcnj

coach Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I thought I read that the new digital board was
> made to "look like" a Solari board whenever the
> digital displays changed.  Digital flapping
> screens, and with a Solari sound!  I remember
> reading about that.  It was done to keep everyone
> happy.

One is Newark Penn is just like that. They even show the horizontal slit across the middle of each readout, which I think makes it less legible, because they over did it. .
I think this whole thing is silly. Send it to Strasburg or Steamtown.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/09/19 08:53 by joemvcnj.



Date: 01/09/19 14:40
Re: Solaris boards
Author: MW4man

As always an uniformed comment.  Go read the ADA law and be smart about it.  ADA requires all public announcements to be both visual and audible, and they must provide the same information.  If the visual display does not match the audible announcement, by law you cannot have either.  It is one of the reasons recorded announcements are used in most transit facilities and such. There has been a grace period and waivers to allow for the legacy systems to remain while new "PIDS" systems are installed everywhere.    The recent maturity of voice synthesis systems has allowed the PIDS systems to become more flexible and less expensive to deploy.   The Solari board will require some very expensive upgrading to make it ADA compliant in that regard.  Not impossible, but it is easier and less expensive to buy a COTS system with a voice synthesis system already integrated into it.  If you have a problem with the ADA law you can bring it up with George H.W. Bush. (or your local congress person)

andersonb109 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> How can a arrivals/departures board have any
> relation to being ADA compliant?  If it does, it
> probably shouldn't. 



Date: 01/09/19 15:39
Re: Solaris boards
Author: abyler

The Solari Board at 30th Street is the only thing normal people around Philadelphia are posting about trains on Facebook.  I hope that gives an indication of the public interest in the subject relative to all other rail subjects.



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