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Steam Stationary Engines, Traction Engines, Steam Boats

Small Unknown Boiler Feed Pump, Hoping For Help!


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  #1  
Old 09-20-2018, 08:07:39 PM
Anachrochanic Anachrochanic is offline
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Default Small Unknown Boiler Feed Pump, Hoping For Help!

Hi everyone,

I was going through my collection, untouched since having back problems a few years ago. I found this lovely antique and realized that I had zero information on it. I'm hoping someone can help me change that.

What I have here is a quite old and small boiler feed pump. It measures about 9" in length and 2.25" wide along the base, about 3" high with base included. It is apparently all original save one replacement screw. It was originally japanned, it's still in its original finish which is still mostly present. I can't find a name on it, or any identifiers at all on either the engine, pump or base. It all seems to work very smoothly - I blew into the steam port and it slowly started pumping (without water in the pump though).

I think that goes to prove that I'm full of hot air!

My guess is that this is meant to be mounted horizontally and I'd guess it's sized for something along the lines of a popcorn machine boiler, sewing machine setup or perhaps even a small launch. I can't find any other pictures of a boiler feed pump quite like mine, and I'm hoping someone out there has.

Thanks!

- Frank
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Old 09-20-2018, 08:54:21 PM
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Gary K Gary K is offline
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Default Re: Small unknown boiler feed pump, hoping for help!

I know nothing about the steam pump, and can't help you with that, but I'm sure someone out there can. I might know how to help you with your back problem?

You mentioned that your having back problems. If its the lower back, before going to bed for the night, lay down on the bed. Now move your feet towards your body, so your knee's are pointing upward. Now grab hold of your knee's with your hands, and hold them tight towards your chest for at least a minute.

What that does, it stretch's the back, so it can go back in place all by itself over night while your sleeping.

Most people don't know, that when the back is out of place, it wants to go back in place by itself. But when the back goes out of place, it tightens up, and can't go back into place, until it's been stretched.

If it's the upper back, while your standing, place your hands together behind your neck, then bend forward. This will stretch the upper back. (Sometimes when I do that, I can hear it go, click, click, click.)

Wishing you the best.
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Old 09-20-2018, 10:43:34 PM
Anachrochanic Anachrochanic is offline
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Default Re: Small unknown boiler feed pump, hoping for help!

Thanks for that! I've had four surgeries on the same disc in my lower back over the last 20+ years. Sadly, when it went last time, the discs on either side herniated as well. My surgeon said I'm not a candidate for fusion due to everything else going bad. It's gotten to the point where sitting for any length of time just isn't going to happen, nor is standing or lifting. If I bend too far forward, my legs drop out from under me, and wow does that hurt! Sadly, standing at one of my lathes or my mill just isn't going to happen any time soon, at least not until there's an FDA approved replacement disc for the lumbar spine. Ugh.

So, in the mean time, I've decided to move along some of my toys. This pump is the only one of my steam engines that I know little about. I was saving it to use with my 30's era Lane & Bodley Corliss engine (the pre-war British model, I forget who made the kit) and larger boiler, but I've decided I'm going to sell all that as well. I've had a formal appraisal on the Corliss, so I have a pretty good idea on the specs of that one. It's this feed pump that has me going in circles...
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Old 09-21-2018, 12:05:03 AM
Lester Bowman Lester Bowman is offline
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Default Re: Small Unknown Boiler Feed Pump, Hoping For Help!

Most of these smallish pumps had brass or bronze cylinders. Yours seems to be cast iron but it may very well be brass lined. The way the check valves are situated on the pump suggest possibly an application where there may have been two separate feeds.

But what? Perhaps the pump was used to supply oil to two oil burners in the steam boiler. Just a thought and I'm probably wrong. Also the pump is a super basic pump as simplex pumps go. The valve appears to be a simple "D" type valve so the steam is used more or less at full pressure.

Interesting little pump. It looks to be shop made although very old. I would be interested in it when you decide to sale it. Could we see a picture of the bottom of the pump? Thank you.
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Old 09-21-2018, 12:53:04 AM
Anachrochanic Anachrochanic is offline
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Default Re: Small Unknown Boiler Feed Pump, Hoping For Help!

Hi Lester,

I do believe the pump and the engine cylinders are both cast iron, the base they are screwed to is plate steel and the bushings, valve caps and handles look like they're brass or red bronze. I'll take a closer look at it tomorrow, just to be certain. I'll take a few more pictures of it as well. In looking through the pictures I took today, none really show the base all that well. It's even tough to see the small pressure bypass levers and I think they're one of the coolest visuals on the beast. Clearly a LOT of effort was put into this by the person who machined it!
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Old 09-22-2018, 01:19:16 PM
Anachrochanic Anachrochanic is offline
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Default Re: Small Unknown Boiler Feed Pump, Hoping For Help!

I took a few more pictures yesterday, mostly of the pedestals and base. The cylinders and end caps are definitely cast iron. The pedestals and check valves are either brass or bronze, I'd suspect the latter given how well they have survived without dents and how nice the threads are. I haven't pulled the end caps off of either the pump or steam cylinders, though I can if there's a call for it. I'm a bit reluctant to disturb too much but I'm certain I can pop them off without damage.

BTW it's sitting on a shoe box, for scale purposes.
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