Reinhardt Scheidler and Scheidler Machine Works, Newark, Ohio


| May/June 1998



Scheidler Machine Works

RR 13, Box 209, Brazil, Indiana 47834

This is a catalog illustration of Scheidler Machine Works about 1900. The machine work and engine assembly was done in the two story building on the left. Boilers were built in the boiler shop on the right. A completed Scheidler portable steam engine sits in the yard between the buildings as does a boiler which has just been built.

In the 1850s Reinhardt Scheidler was employed as a mechanic for the Newark Machine Works in Newark, Ohio. By 1864 this company was sold. Scheidler, along with Patrick McNamar, formed a partnership company to build portable steam engines, boilers and sawmills.

After twenty years of operation in 1880, Scheidler had sold his interest in the Scheidler-McNamar partnership and built a new plant on South Third Street in Newark. The partnership was dissolved because of Reinhardt's differences with Patrick McNamar, who replaced his father in 1868. Some of the differences were that McNamar refused to build a traction steam engine until he had finished building a spur gear differential, as he did not trust the bevel gear differential. Another problem was that McNamar insisted that all engine valve gear was double-ported balanced slide valve type.

Scheidler went into the steam engine building business by himself, and in his new factory could now build steam engines the way he wanted to build them. In 1882 he built a traction engine which sold for $1,000. This was a unique engine, as Scheidler had not yet designed a differential gear, so this engine did not have a differential but had two long levers which threw the bull pinion out of gear on the side of the engine which the operator wished to turn. This system was very unsatisfactory, as the gears were prone to break and as Scheidler sold the engine with a warranty; the engine was later fitted with a bevel gear differential.

Scheidler engines were built many different ways; the engine could be purchased with a balanced 'D' valve or Scheidler's piston valve design. Other options were with or without a clutch and with or without a super heater at the base of the stack. The main drawback of the engines was Scheidler did not use staybolts to fasten the crown sheet to the boiler but used a crown sheet support that he patented. Scheidler's design used crown bars hot riveted lengthwise to the crown sheet. Each pair of crown bars was spaced so that the head of a 5/8' machine bolt would be held in the slots of the crown bars. These bolts could be spaced as desired during final assembly. The inside of the boiler wagon top also had crown bars riveted to it, which supported 5/8' machine bolts. Nuts were fastened to the 5/8' machine bolts which were tightened to the desired tension.