Steam Engineer School at Pawnee


| September/October 1996



Joe Graziana

R.R. 13, Box 209 Brazil, Indiana 47834

On March 2nd and 3rd, 1996, a two day steam school was held at Pawnee, Oklahoma. The school stresses the Oklahoma Steam Threshing and Gas Engine Association's commitment to the steam hobby, and also to their old and new engineers.

Joe Graziana of Wood River, Illinois, and I felt fortunate to attend the school, and we both felt we gained knowledge from this group of 'Western engineers.'

Chady Atteberry covered topics of general operating practices and nomenclature, using various makes of engines as examples. Steve Dunn discussed the safety features in a steam boiler and stressed the need to periodically change the fusible, or soft plug, in the boiler, as the buildup of scale on the top of the fusible plug will prevent it from doing its job as a safety device.

Joe Graziana of Wood River, Illinois, instructed the class on steam governor operation and troubleshooting. That's a brand new Pickering governor and its box in the middle of the table.

Joe Graziana put on a steam governor 'clinic' using a Pickering governor as an example. Joe discussed the function of all of the governor parts, explained how to check the governor on the engine by throwing off the belt and spinning the governor from the belt pulley; if it does not spin freely or binds, this indicates the governor may need work. Joe showed how to disassemble a governor and check the clearance between the valve and the seats. At the end of each session, Joe got the attention of each attendee by showing them what a brand new IV2' Pickering governor looked like in the box, along with factory wrenches to adjust the ball ranger speed control. Joe presented the governor class on both Saturday and Sunday.