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94. Switches


Magneto-switchSuddenly we’re looking into all things electrical. There’s not a lot of electricity on a Bristol Scout, but you do need ignition switches – one on the instrument panel and one of the top of the stick. The master switch is simply an old-fashioned brass light switch, like this:

And happily there’s a shop in our town, Ludlow, that sells all that sort of stuff. Called Dickinson’s Period House Shops, there is a chain of three outlets selling all sorts of period house furnishings to grace your listed (or non-listed) home.

Dickinson's Period House Shop in Corve St., Ludlow

Dickinson’s Period House Shop in Corve St., Ludlow




There is still an important decision to take. The drawings show the switch being fitted to the instrument panel, much as you would expect for a car, but about this time it became standard practice to fit the switch on the outside, just forward of the cockpit and in easy reach of the pilot. There were good reasons for this; when starting, the person pulling the propeller could see the pilot’s hand, and the position of the switch before he pulled it over, so he was less likely to start it accidentally. Also it was easier for the pilot to reach in an emergency.

But checking the photograph of 1264 that shows this, it’s clear that the switch was still fitted inside, so that’s what we’ll have to do.

The other magneto switch is on the top of the control stick, and is a simple push button. You can see it best in the photo from the parts list.


It’s part no. 102 at the top, and since we’ve got the grip mended, it makes sense to start getting the switch fitted.

Once again, there’s a local shop in Tenbury Wells that stocks electrical equipment for vintage and veteran carts (and will do period wiring for us too), called Auto Electric Supplies, so we only have to pop across the road from the supermarket to pick up what we want.

It’s a shame we can’t do the same with the engine, really!


From → Building

One Comment
  1. Helllooooooo!! Glad you’re up and about again. Happy New Year

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