SOOT IN THE FLUES


| September/October 1968



Soot in the flues

Well, since this is the September-October issue, that means school will be starting and the crisp autumn air will be a thing of the present instead of the hot lovely summer reunion days that you folks are now enjoying so as you pick up this book midst the hot degrees of August, methinks perhaps you will welcome the next season of the year what with the school bells ringing, the burning of leaves that always brings a nostalgia of yesteryears the jack-o-lanterns a brisk walk in the morning and a time to think more seriously of the upcoming election and I could go on, but I'd better get my items of interest onto you.

Cliff B. Shirley, of 2009 West 71st St., Prairie Village, Kansas 66208, wrote us and I quote 'The Jan-Feb. '68 issue of IMA, page 37, describes an extremely small steam engine. There have been a few others that compare favorably with this one and one is on exhibition at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. It was built long ago and it is said that this engine is still in running condition. While the Canadian engine runs from compressed air, the engine at the Franklin Institute is said to be an actual steam engine. A few drops of alcohol on a bit of cotton burns long enough to make steam from a few more drops of water. The engine is in a glass case and is not operated for the public, but an employee said that it will run.

A lot of the work of building a very small engine is of a nature that can be done by people who are skilled at watch making. However, one might wonder about the construction of extremely small pipe and the joining of this pipe to the other parts of the engine. Also, there would be the problem of condensation.

Anything that runs by steam is interesting and that includes the smallest of miniatures as well as full-sized machines. I would like to see descriptions of other contenders for the title of 'The Smallest Steam Engine on Earth. 'any other contenders? Let's hear from you!

A suggestion from Frank L. McGuffin, 3531 Tea St. N. W., Washington, D. C. 20007Frank suggests that people sending in show reports should not send the same write-up to different magazines for the people getting all these magazines are reading the same thing then. He thinks it would be well to have different people write up separate reports for the similar magazines. He's right you know it would be a bit more interesting if the reports were done by several folks. I guess this is sometimes hard to accomplish though, for if it is like other jobs you're lucky to get one person to do it sometimes. Well, it's a thought and perhaps some of you can take advantage of it.

Rev. Norbert J. Lucht, Box 137, Athens, Illinois 62613, a contributor of IMA, has some questions he would like answered, so am herewith printing his letter and hoping he will get some answers from fellow readers. He writes as follows: