Refurbishing an Old Model Steam Engine.

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Hi Pete,

That sure is a leggy looking critter, isn't it?

Yes, there has been a suggestion that the flywheel was mounted between the bearings. I glad I didn't think of that, I don't fancy cutting a slot in 15 mm steel!

The engine has been stripped and the flywheel, engine support and base have been painted.

The engine support was originally brass finished but is heavily verdigris which would take a lot of polishing to get rid of, and with arthritic hands it would require more effort than I am prepared to use so it was painted as the flywheel, other than the base plate all the other components will remain plain metal.

As can be seen from this photograph the piston isn't a good fit relying very much on the piston ring for a seal.

The feet have been polished and filled with plaster of Paris and will have some cork stuck to them.

The flywheel/pulley has been crowned to look as if it drives a flat belt.

The gaskets have been cut.

At the end of play today except for the engine support this is what everything looked like.

Regards Tony.

With the paint dry the engine is back in one piece.

While apart and so as not to continue to use shim the two bearing were bolted together and bases machined.

The bearings back on the bed plate.

Another view of the completed engine.

The engine parts as received.

The engine does run on air but poorly. The piston ring seems to do its job even the packing on the piston rod and valve rod seal after a fashion and no problem with the gaskets. Running the engine on steam should find out how good the seals really are. The lumpy running problem is caused by the position of the steam and exhaust ports in the cylinder. So the ports will be plugged and new ones made. I still have to source a heavy flywheel or a heavy ring for the existing one. But this will have to wait until after the CMES Rally this weekend then a visit to the Midlands playing trains and visiting our children on the way home, so with a bit of luck I will get back to working on the engine in a couple of weeks.

Regards Tony.

A bit of a bonus from visiting the CMES's annual steam rally this year. I spent the whole of my allowance from SWMBO for the weekend

Nine inches in diameter but a bit porous. It has a threaded hole in its centre and another on its rim and it looks as if it was part of a machine. Before going away I had enough time to see if it was machinable.

It looks OK but will have to wait until I get back to the workshop to finish it.

Regards Tony.

In my excitement in finding a heavier fly wheel I forgot to post some photographs. As the engine wasn't running that well I was going to plug and re-drill the steam and exhaust ports but later decided to make a port cover with new potion ports and use the existing ports drilled in the cylinder. The valve was lengthen to give some lap. The position of the new ports had to suit the eccentric and the position of the ports in the cylinder so their position is a bit of a compromise which should work.

Construction photographs.

As I had a bit of time before we leave I did an air test on the engine. Video at:

Regards Tony.

IMHO this is not as elegant as some of your engines. However what you have achieved with a relatively useless pile of metal pieces is truly "Incredible". You "de man!"

Having spent the last ten days or so playing trains, visiting railways and going to see how well our latest granddaughter is doing it was back to the workshop today. The new larger cast iron flywheel was partially machined before we went away so today I finished the machining and painted it. The engine now looks like this:

I spent some time playing with the timing and ran the engine on air again. The heavier flywheel allowing the engine to turn over much more slowly. The loud knock heard in the previous video has nearly disappeared tightening the loose gland nuts on the piston rod gland helped! I have tested the engine on air and will down load a video later. The engine will work at about 5 psi but is happier and smoother at 8 psi.

The clamps and jigs used to make the new parts of the engine.

There is just the incomplete governor valve to restore it won't work as there is no governor but as I have it, it seems a shame not to fit it.

Video to come when it is down loaded.

Regards Tony.
Very nice Tony!

I like the larger flywheel and it runs real nice!

the engine certainly seems to sound better and look better with the new flywheel! Performance definitely improved on that second video. Great job!

Thank you for the compliments. Having fitted what remains of the governor's regulator in the steam chest and tidied up the exhaust connection I think the model is finished and I hope my friend is happy with what I have done with his gift.

I have tried to use all the original parts, the exceptions being some small screws, the piston ring and a part of the regulator housing. I have also tried not to over clean or re-engineer too many of the parts; because of this I suspect that if the model was run on steam some of it would exit around the valve and piston rod glands along with the cock on top of the cylinder.

I suspect that the model never ran in its present form the steam ports and valve just didn't line up. The only determinable wear was on the original bearing and the shaft and as the crank pin had been re-positioned I wonder if these parts came from another model?

In any event around 1900 give or take 20 years a model engineer probably in the UK made a model steam engine using hand powered tools in probably poor lighting conditions. In the ME magazines of the period there are advertisements for casting to make steam powered generators to light your workshop, as the model might have had a governor maybe it was to be put to this use. In any event someone a long time ago put a lot of effort into making the model. It was an interesting project and I am very happy with the results.

Regards Tony.

Last photograph of the model; honest!

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I am impressed over youre ability to machine and repair old engines

anded (anders )

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