British Table Engine

Table Engine

Content Tools

44W059 Empire Road St. Charles, Illinois 60175

A few years ago, I sent you an article on building a model Scotch yoke steam pump, and I believe, at that time, I mentioned a British table engine I was in the process of restoring.

Well, the time has come when I finally finished it. However, in the between time, I had a little bout with the surgeon's handy-dandy carving knife and had a new hip put in. Boy, it's nice to be able to walk again! But enough of that!

Here are some pictures taken by my good friend, Dave Farmer, at the Sycamore Show last August. We had a real nice show the weather was good and I'm sure everyone had a good time.

The engine has as 1.875' bore and 5' stroke and is governed at 100 RPM. The flywheel is 17' diameter, and the drive pulley is 10' diameter. The boiler is wet-wall which I built from scratch. The shell is 12' ID by 24' high. The firebox is 10' ID by 8' high. It is built entirely of brass. The shell and firebox are extruded brass with 3/16' thick walls, the top flue sheet, crown sheet, and mud ring are ' hard-drawn brass and the 49 flues are ' OD brass tube. The entire boiler is silver soldered and tested to 350 PSIG Hydraulic. I run it at 25 PSIG with the pop valve set at 35 PSIG, so I have a good margin of safety.

I use a home brew propane burner that puts out plenty of heat and, of course, is clean.

I'm sure that some of our fellow steamers will have comments on brass boilers, however, I only use distilled water and low pressure. For higher pressure boilers I stick to copper.

I have three sources of feed water on this set: the Scotch yoke pump on the engine, Cole's scale model Worthington Duplex pump, and finally, when all else fails, a hand pump.

By the way, if any of your modelers want a nice little pump that works like a champ, I can recommend Cole's Worthington Duplex. I have built two of them. It's quite a challenge to build as it's quite small, but it's worth the effort.

I just turned 74 and have been retired for 12 years (working on 13!) I retired from AT&T Technologies (formerly Western Electric) as a Senior Electrical Engineer with 39 years of service. I've been a sub scriber to Iron-Men Album since the 50's and to Gas Engine Magazine since Vol. 1, No. 1, and thoroughly enjoy both of them.

So, keep a good fire in the firebox, a good head of steam and watch that water level!