Here is a list of all the postings Michael Hudson 6 has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.
|Thread: Antique Steam Engine from Doorknob|
A small update from me - have ordered some plus gas, have kept away from the wd40.. Very intrigued regarding the possible valve arrangement. I think I will try and talk to our vet and see if they will oblige with an X-Ray or two
Thanks for the tips. I'm wary of inadvertently (breaking it!) cleaning it or leaving a deposit behind, I know wd40 can leave a residue so just wanted to check that wasn't going to harm the brass or clean it up too much.
quick update: I tried the pen idea and although it is not quite small enough to fit in the filler hole i was able to cover the hole and apply some air pressure to the boiler. I promptly figured out that the steam inlet valve/tap (below the cylinder) is closed, and it is not turning with a moderate amount of pressure.
I also blew into the exhaust and got some movement at the flywheel (no more than half a stroke of the piston I would say) and also a little movement if I blew into that small hole near the crank.
But the question now is how best to open the steam inlet. I wanted to check here before proceeding - what is a good penetrating oil to use, if any?
That might work, I'll give it a go!
Hi Sorry for the delay replying. The doorknob is about 2 inches diameter, not a big doorknob at all.
I removed the screws from "the plate with two screws" (carefully!) hoping the plate was simply a cover but the crank passes through it so the screws went back in before anything got bent.
I removed the old brasso marks with a turps-based cleaner and it doesn't look to me as though anything around that area is missing. I think the area behind the crank arm on that side (without the flywheel) is too tight for a coaxial gear, and the thing you can see in the photos is a tiny pin that is fastening the crank arm to the crank, or rather wedging it tight against the end of the crank.
The small lever under the main cylinder rotates on a wedge shaped pin; it doesn't seem to me to be made for frequent movement, or it would be on a cylindrical shaft. The range of motion is quite wide - it moves from about 20 degrees past vertical towards the centre of the engine, down to horizontal outwards. So I'm inclined to agree with the idea that it's some kind of relief valve. But I'm no expert! The end of it doesn't look broken to me but shaped to allow a fingernail or similar to pull it back down.
I like the idea of using air to get a feel for the operation. I am still looking for a piece of tubing that will fit the filler hole!
Yeah I thought that too but I can’t see how anything connected in line with the notch wouldn’t interfere with the crank arm?
heres a photo of the small hole, the notch can be seen here too, and in some of the photos from above I posted earlier, it turns out
Hi all, two updates: that clock made by the same Richard Westerman is actually still for sale, and I just bought it! eek. Still for sale as in - by coincidence the same shop has just bought it back in part exchange from the last person who bought it 10 years ago. Crazy.
Also I had a closer look at the area under the cylinder, and there is a small hole on the same side as the empty boss on the cross head (I'm borrowing terminology from the posts above). Also on that side there is a small notch on the upper flange of the area under the cylinder. I couldn't imagine a notch like that would be a mistake, so perhaps it was giving clearance to another rod. I'll post a couple of pictures up in a bit.
I had a careful look and couldn't see anything rotating inside the small hole, I thought it might be an inlet valve.
Edited By Michael Hudson 6 on 17/05/2019 10:13:19
Edited By Michael Hudson 6 on 17/05/2019 10:13:44
Wow! that is amazing!
Thanks so much for your interest guys. I've just written to AR so we'll see if they have anything to say. I'll try and attend the one near me (South Wales) in July whether they do or not.
Just found out Richard Westerman was a watchmaker! He was born in 1801 and died in 1872. In the 1861 census he is a Retired Watchmaker in Woodhouse Grove, Leeds.
Edited By Michael Hudson 6 on 16/05/2019 13:29:11
I'm thinking about taking it to AR actually, trying to dig up some more info about Richard Westerman now. Ancestry.com is amazing - I'm back in the 1770s already, I only started half an hour ago!
No need to apologise, it was my misunderstanding. The newspaper article mentions that the "needle-like eccentric has recently become detached". To me it all looks in place - and I know it's run since the article was written - does it look like anything might be missing?
Sorry, misunderstood you there, see my preemptive edit, or so I thought..
It is definitely a steam engine. It has run and is not purely decorative. Apologies if I misinterpret the questioning of it being decorative vs functioning/functional!
We've alwyas understood it was an exercise in craftsmanship rather than some professional undertaking. I need to find out more about great-great uncle Westerman!
Edited By Michael Hudson 6 on 16/05/2019 10:26:59
Edited By Michael Hudson 6 on 16/05/2019 10:28:07
Edited above to put the photos in directly rather than link to the album
Right lets see if this works:
Edited By Michael Hudson 6 on 16/05/2019 10:08:34
Sorry, I should have mentioned that it has always been under a glass dome, the newspaper article mentions it as well.
Oops you’re right 1851 and moved to Penge common in 1854
I found the article I mentioned. It says my great grandfather estimated it to have been completed in 1826, and that it won special merit in “a” Crystal Palace exhibition around that date.
That confuses me, since “the” Crystal Palace wasn’t built until 1856 if I’m not mistaken. I can’t see any mention of the builder in the great exhibition catalogue either (his name was Richard Westerman). So perhaps the build date is off too. The hours worked on it were a mere 1280, not 1700, I stand corrected!
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