GEC Z5590

Lantern acquired in February 2007.

My thanks again go to Davy for sending this lantern. When removed, a 70 Watt SON lamp was installed but I have converted it back to mercury. The lantern came from column #7 on Erme Gardens in the Efford area of Plymouth and was mounted to a CU concrete column. The decision to replace it came about due to time switch removals - a Venner MSQP was used in this case. This removal took place around the 18th March 2005. The Z5590 cannot be found on public roads in Derbyshire.

The lantern is in a generally good condition - the bowl is slightly yellowed but it is still transparent. A length of the top-entry coupler remains in the spigot of the lantern.

The GEC logo is located on the 'left' hand side of the lantern.

The shape of the bowl magnifies the diameter of the refractor quite considerably.

The refractor is not original to this lantern - it is actually the one that was fitted in my Z5671 when it was removed! The two hooks visible hold the refractor on the reflector.

With the reflector removed, the construction of the lantern becomes clearer. There are two focusing positions on this lantern - the lampholder is currently positioned in the lower of the two.

The reflector viewed from above. The two hooks are visible here.

The Z5580 and Z5590 are compared here. Both lanterns are shown with the 'Street Side' position being at the front. The Z5580 is fitted with a Z5590 bowl (thanks to Pete Greenall for providing this!). Both bowl frames are the same diameter; making for easy bowl replacements when required.


The lantern was restored on Tuesday, 22nd May 2007. All that was really required was a repaint of the canopy and reflector. The lantern was then fitted to an AC Ford AC 184 top-entry bracket the following Friday. I decided to convert the lantern back to mercury and so an old 3BC lampholder was cleaned up and fitted in place of the ES one.

The existing " BSP thread was removed from the bracket and then the seized length from the lantern's original bracket was fitted in place. The cable was then threaded through - this was made all the more easier due to the bracket having a simple right-angled pipe bend rather than a more elaborate finial.

The refractor cleaned up very well - I even managed to spot '75' etched on the sparkling glass - as you might gather, this represents the year the refractor, and thus, the Z5671 too, in all likelihood, was made.

    A brand-new mercury lamp had been fitted and so the final output was actually rather blinding!

The yellowed bowl did also not restrict the output too much when it was put back in place.


A replacement bowl was fitted on Saturday, 31st May 2008. Whilst this is a vacuum-formed replica, it is a very good match for the original.

Lantern warm-up video:

GEC Z9531 | Phosware P109




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