Casting Kits I would like to see For Sale Again

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does not appear to be a wobbler, does not appear to be a scotch yoke, does not appear to be able to turn over, what am I missing ?

I often go to this website to find simulations of the old odd steam engine designs.

I just happened across this page, so I will post it here, in case others are interested.

I am looking for my documentation on the Direct Connect Steam Engine.
does not appear to be a wobbler, does not appear to be a scotch yoke, does not appear to be able to turn over, what am I missing ?

I am having trouble finding the original "Direct Connect" steam engine article, but it was in a Lindsay reprinted book about old steam engines.

This was one of the Lindsay challenges that Lindsay sent my dad.
My dad saw the article, and said "no problem", and build a working engine, which runs superbly.

Dad had a gift for understanding odd and obscure old engine mechanisms.
Dad could look at an engraving and a few sections, and then completely understand the kinematics very quickly.
He would then create geometic sketches that laid out the critical geometry, and then dad would build the engine.
All of dad's engines ran very well. There was never a problem with any of them running smoothly.

Here is dad's geometric sketches for the Direct Connect.
I will keep looking for the original article.

The closest thing I can find is a double scotch yoke (picture attached), which was a layout used to make toys.
The toy would have two shuttles (crossheads) that ran in the yoke slots.
The shuttles would be connected by an arm, and when you cranked on the arm via a pin on the end of the arm, the shuttles would go back and forth in the slots.

The Direct Connect engine has two crankshafts; one is a standard shaft with disk on the end, and a crank pin in the disk.
The second crankshaft is free-floating, with one end working in the first crankshaft pin.

It is an arrangement that does not seem to be practical or feasible at all, and yet the engine runs extremely well (I will look for a video).

The piston rod movement is linear, and no crossheads are required, which allows a very compact twin cylinder design.


I work in an industry where I have to design and orchestrate the replacement of medium voltage switchgear, control systems, large motors (5,000 hp), distribution transformers, etc.

Various Owner's and plant operators approach me and give me what is often considered by many an impossible task, or at the least a very risky and dangerous task.

Downtime in many of the industries is measured in millions of dollars per minute.
Some processes will explode violently if you interrupt power at the wrong time, such as oil refinerys.

Often times industrial complexes are designed without any consideration of what happens if the medium voltage equipment fails suddenly, or needs to be removed and replaced.
And many processes are continuous, and cannot be interrupted for more than minutes.

This is the world I live and work in.
The owner says "Make it happen".
Most designers would run for the door.
I single error would be career-ending, and would bankrupt my firm.

So every day, I make the difficult/impossible happen, and I pull off very complex, difficult and dangerous tasks.

There is never a situation where I say "That is too difficult, too risky, too dangerous", although I often think "this may not end well".

The risk is high, but the money is good.

I never think about reasons why something may not work, but instead focus on coming up with creative cost-effective solutions to complex problems, so that I can make things happen.

The model engine hobby is a very relaxing endeavor for me, and a nice break from the stress and tensions of work projects.

The things I have learned at work give me a lot of confidence when I and trying to do new things in the hobby world.

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That is quite a kit for sure.

I can't recall anything about Dennis Howe or his foundry.
He made some nice castings (or had someone make them ?).

It may be a pretty safe assumption to say you won't find another casting kit like this again, but the technology and knowledge base to make these castings in bronze and gray iron exists right here on this forum.
We have the technology and the equipment, but not much time to make such things happen.

Making a set of patterns for this engine would be somewhat time consuming, especially that cylinder with the cast passages.
From a time standpoint, if time=money, most would save a lot of money by purchasing these rather than making their own.

Good luck selling this kit.
It really is some beautiful casting work, and a great model engine style too !

Well, that may be true but If one has more time than $$, it is the other way. It becomes feasible to cast them.
Sort of reinforces what I am saying, that it doesn't exist if other's can see it.
There is information in books in China.
I can't see those either.

Just to satisfy some folks, I attempted to register at the "other" forum a minute ago.

I am on some sort of blacklist for that site.
No matter what username or email address I use, I get the message to the effect "you are spam", and thus I am blocked from the site permanently.
If I am blocked, I have to guess others are also blocked if they are also blacklisted.

I did not have any trouble at all joining this forum using the same email address I have always used.
This site appears to welcome all modelers.
The same cannot be said for all forums.

So the loss is theirs, not mine, I am on a great forum with great people (the best in my opinion).
I don't need another one.

Just sayin.

I got banned from one of the other forums, for what? Something extremely picky.
I got banned from one of the other forums, for what? Something extremely picky.

I first started joining forums in perhaps 2008, and there is definitely an art to finding a good forum, with good folks who think like you do.

It has been quite a learning experience for me, and I made a lot of mistakes for a long time, and no doubt ruffled a lot of feathers while gaining little for myself or the hobby in general.

Some forums have professional trolls, whose only goal in life is to get in other people's face and start trouble.

Good forums get rid of the trolls quickly before they do much damage.
There is an art to moderating a forum too, and a good forum must have good moderation.

I like this forum because it seems pretty focused, it is easy going, I have not run across any trolls, and it is a worldwide group of folks who share an interest in model engine building.

There seems to be a willingness here by management to add whatever sections are needed for new and relevant technology, such as 3D printers, metal casting, etc.

Some forums are very set in their ways, and suggestions of adding or changing things is met with scorn and outright ridicule.

I have been on casting forums that were run by excellent administrators, and then the administration changed, and a bunch of hostile and toxic people took over and basically ruined the forum, driving off the majority of the active members.

I must say I have had a great experience on this forum since I joined it, and it ranks in my mind as the best forum I have ever joined.

Good spirit and camaraderie here, and I like that a lot.
And a huge amount of model engine building talent here too, with great willingness to share information, and I highly value that too.

The trick with that engine is that the crankshaft is not solid, look closely at the joint I have ringed which allows the piston rods to move in a straight line when logic tells our brain that the crank pins are rotating around the main shaft
I guess it could be described as a two-piece crankshaft, with the crankshaft connected to the two piston rods floating, but pinned to the other crankshaft.

It is a fascinating engine to watch.
I will try to dig it out of the closet and take a video of it running.

I guess the combined vectors from the two piston rods pushing on crank #2 create a force transmitted to crank #1.

This design seems totally impractical, but the engine is an impressive runner, and very smooth.

The action is very much like the lower one in that image you posted and found on rectilinear engines. Only difference is your dad's engine has one piston moving the vertical slider and the other moving the horizontal . Main crank joins the other at the midpoint where it describes a circle
I found this image online, and it was a common toy made from wood or plastic.

This is what is happening with the direct connected engine.

The white knob acts upon the stationary crank.

The difference between Pats one and other V designs is that the conrod can pivot allowing it to move in a circular motion about the cranckshaft's ctr line

In this is no conrod as such so all piston and rod movement is in a straight line

If you look at this rather nice V twin steam engine you can see the straight motion of the piston and rod only extends as far as the cross head. You then get
conrods that pivot

I envision one or more hobby individuals creating 3D models for these engines, and someone making permanent aluminum matchplates to be used for making castings.

If someone wants a casting kit, they select from the available match plates, and have that kit cast either by themselves or by someone else.

Perhaps a pie-in-the-sky vision, but how do we preserve our gray iron casting kits in a world where gray iron kits seem to be going the way of the Dodo.

I have a couple of these casting for sale.


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That is a good looking engine.
There is a "for sale" area on this forum.
You should post those photos there too, so everyone will see them.

I am tempted to snag a kit, but I better not at this point.

Go on pat, if from the original source it's a very nicely cast kit, I have one waiting to be done some day. Stationary Engine Magazie ran a series on making the kit and then published all the articles in a booklet which would be worth getting for anyone wanting to build this one
I have a major full size engine purchase in the works, and so I am saving up for that; hoping I can make it happen around the end of the year.