The Coker Rope & Sail Trust is very grateful to:
– The Association for Industrial Archeology
– South West Museum Development Programme
for their support which made possible the restoration of Dawe’s Twineworks machinery and the installation of the engine.
WE HAVE AN ENGINE AND IT WORKS
On August 4th 2015, the volunteer team completed the plumbing of the compressor and pumped up the air cylinder (a WWI torpedo casing) to 230psi. After final checks, the air-valve was opened, the engine spun, the fuel was turned on and the big engine ran. On the 14th, we connected the long drive belt from the engine to the line-shaft pulleys and drove the machinery for the first time. See HERE
Photos and videos taken by West Coker Camera Club in July 2016 can be found HERE
(Thank you to the members)
See story and more pictures below
Here is the story:
Mr Phil Upshall and family very kindly lent us a 1927 23HP Shanks diesel engine which he and his son Sean rescued from a farm in Scotland where it had been since it was built in Arbroath in 1927. Thanks to Robert Mead, owner of a large ‘telehandler’, the engine was installed on a new concrete plinth on the foundations which were put in place when Dawe’s steam engine was replaced by a diesel sometime in the 1920s. The new plinth was was constructed by Aaron Chubb and Jason Bartlett. Neil Evans and Chris Barker installed the 1500lb flywheel and the 500lb crankshaft. Mark Holden’s team did some heavy plumbing, SW Steels made a bearing support for us (many thanks to both), and a local volunteer team managed to get the WWI torpedo casing upright after it had been tested to 500psi. The crankshaft was aligned – it needed a shim of just 1mm to get it right – and the little 2HP engine drove the big Shanks crankshaft for about 20 minutes to confirm that the bearings are not getting hot. See video of this historic run HERE.
And then, on June 14th, with assistance from Ian Morgan’s tractor’s belt drive, the engine spun into life. It runs very well, governed to about 240rpm. Outside, the two underground silencers mean that the big engine is almost inaudible. See video HERE.
Alll we needed was a big compressor which would charge up the torpedo casing to 250psi so we could start the engine without a tractor. Paul Evans, curator of the ‘Internal Fire’ Museum kindly offered us one on loan. So, Ross, Chris, Pammy and Val visited the west coast of Wales and returned with 750lb of diesel engine. Volunteers managed to unload it and three weeks later, it was bolted down with cooling, fuel exhaust and air all connected. Here it is, driving the main lineshaft via the long belt, click HERE.
Click on any of the photos below to get a full-size picture.
Latest photos are at the top; oldest at the bottom.