Museum News 2005

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January 2005

Yarwood Vertical Compound Marine Engine No. 193 (Out of the dredger 'SEIONT II).

Restoration work has now been completed on this engine. A temporary steam supply and exhaust system has been fitted for a trial run. At first it was difficult to start but once a 'technique' had been established it ran reasonably well, albeit a little bit uneven. The reason for this could be low steam pressure due to the temporary steam supply. Reversing rotation is also difficult but this may improve when more steam is available.
On New Years Day it ran for most of the day without any other problems and, if convenient, it will be run on most steaming days.

The Yarwood compound marine engine in steam for the first time. Yarwood Marine Engine

New Arrivals

Two more engines have arrived for restoration - both on loan from Salter's Steamers Ltd. Oxford.
1 - Inverted vertical triple exp. marine engine built in 1931 by Sissons of Gloucester No.3113 and is out of the River Thames Passenger Boat 'Clivedon'. It is almost identical to the Sissons already restored and steaming in the museum!
2 - Inverted vertical triple exp. marine engine built by Plenty & Sons Ltd., Engineers, Newbury No.2518 (as yet no date), out of the River Thames Passenger Boat 'Queen of the Thames'

The initial loan period for these two engines is 2.5 years.

Sissons Triple No.3113 The Sissons triple expansion engine No.3113 as arrived from Salter's
The Plenty & Sons Ltd. triple expansion engine No.2518 as arrived from Salter's Plenty Triple No.2518

Reliant Paddle Tug, Side-Lever Engine

Although the paddle wheel arms (spokes) and the original small ring had some identification letters ( A to H) marked on them, as far as could be seen, their relative positions in the hub slots were not marked. The spokes would have been individually fitted to the hub so there was only one way they could have gone back - but which way??
After several unsuccessful trial assemblies - a break through. By chance, as the hub was turned to a different position, an eagle eye spotted some faint markings, which resembled the letters F and G, next to two slots on the hub. This gave the chaps working on the wheel a starting point. It was still not straight forward but after a lot of hard work the spokes and new outer rim was eventually fitted. The spokes and rim were heavy and awkward to handle even with the aid of the crane.
Eight new spokes and an inner and outer rim had to be fabricated for the outboard side of the paddle wheel (the originals were missing). Then each new spoke was correctly assembled in its place, the positions of the holes marked out, then removed for the holes to be drilled and finally bolted back in place. Similarly, the new inner andouter rims were fitted. A strenuous and time consuming exercise!

The next challenge, for the restorers, was the fitting of the wooden paddles. Some new pivot pins had to turned in the lathe and most of the existing ones were re-machined (corrosion had eaten into the surfaces). New bearing were also turned from solid nylon bar and individually fitted to each paddle. All paddles have now been fitted. Work is now concentrated on the paddle feathering mechanism. The original mechanism would have been anchored to the side of the tug, but in our case a fabricated steel structure has had to be designed and is under construction.

To help with this work a car wheel and tyre was fitted to the output shaft of an electrically driven reduction gear. This assembly was bolted directly underneath the paddle wheel with the tyre in contact with the outer rim. with this arrangement the paddle wheel could be easily rotated to the best position for fitting the paddles etc.
During steaming days this mechanism continually turns the paddle wheel to give a nice visual effect.

Spoke & Bearing A new paddle wheel spoke with bearing housing ready for welding.
Eight of these were required.
On the right is the central hub for the feathering mechanism - all the paddles will be linked to it.
On the left can be seen some bearing brackets.
Central hub for the feathering gear
A paddle A paddle mounted on the paddle wheel.
The temporary driving mechanism for the paddle wheel.
NOTE!! the guard was removed to take the photo.
Central hub for the feathering gear

CD Holmes Triple Expansion Marine Engine, (out of tank cleaning vessel, 'Tulipbank')

Nov 2005
This engine came to us on loan from The National Maritime Museum, Greenwich in 2002, missing its pistons and valves etc. (See Museum News 2002). It was partly assembled and has been taking up valuable space at one end of the museum. Since there is no hope of it being resored for steaming it was decided to dismantle it and move it to a place outside, where it will be rebuilt, as a static display, near to the garden centre entrance. The N.M.M. have been informed of its plight.
The space vacated has been block paved to provide, for the time being, a much needed work area.

Horizontal Engine, on loan from Bradford Industrial Museum

This engine came to us on loan from Bradford Industrial Museum in March 2003 (see Museum News 2003). Soon after arrival some intial work was carried out, such as covers removed for inspection of cylinder, piston and valve etc.
The valve rod was worn and pitted due to corrosion, so it was set up in the lathe and lightly turned down until a nice even surface was achieved. Because of other priorities work stopped on this engine.

In early December I took pity on the engine and started to revive it!, making use of the working space provided by the new block paved area. The engine had originally been mounted and running on a wooden base made from railway sleepers bolted together. This was a most unstable arrangement and upon inspection of the main bearings, excessive and uneven wear was revealed, due to misalignment.
The engine has been removed from its wooden sleeper base and completely stripped down. It is intended to construct a more sturdy steel frame to support it.

BIM Engine Horizontal engine from Bradford Industrial Museum, sitting on its railway sleeper base.
The engine stripped down, showing piston and piston rod etc. BIM Engine

Arrival of Weir Boiler Feed Pumps

During November two boiler feed pumps, built by G&J Weir Ltd., Glasgow, were rescued from The Retreat Hospital on Heslington Road, York, who have kindly donated them to the Museum.
The pumps now await restoration.

Weir boiler feed pump One of the Weir Direct-Acting Feed Pumps from The Retreat Hospital.

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