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Steam Stationary Engines, Traction Engines Antique steam engines, their boilers, pumps, gauges, whistles and other related things that make them run.

Steam Stationary Engines, Traction Engines

Tractomotive circa 1862


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  #1  
Old 09-26-2013, 12:14:00 AM
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Default Tractomotive circa 1862

Does anyone know anything about this engine? A friend purchased the photo and I've reduced its size and quality down, but wanted to leave it good enough for people to see and draw their conclusions. I know nothing, other than it is really great for the American Civil War timeframe. I did think it was interesting they added a flywheel to the drive train, in the manner they did. and it appears to have articulated steering. Gary
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Old 09-26-2013, 01:19:52 AM
cyberbadger cyberbadger is offline
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

20 Reeves Highwheeler,

I am a new one to steam, but let me give my take.

1) I could be wrong, but this seems like an agricultural contraption/implement not anything for war use during the civil war.

2) My guess is that is either a planting(put seeds in the ground) engine or an irrigation device, or multi-purpose engine.

I see 2 different water pumps. (I know injectors weren't common at that point) A vertical firetube boiler. An engine which is reversable with a stephenson-type linkage.

I don't understand the hopper in the front unless it stored grain.

-CB
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Old 09-26-2013, 02:01:17 AM
Jeff Smith Jeff Smith is offline
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

I think it is a British roller with an optional belt pulley. The front looks similar to the William Batho Steam Roller about midway down this page: http://www.henderson-tele.com/cat/uk/1900.html
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Old 09-26-2013, 04:53:46 AM
CS Brown CS Brown is offline
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

Did a little digging and came up with this.

https://www.google.com/patents/US344...ed=0CDsQ6AEwAA
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Old 09-26-2013, 09:32:43 AM
Pete LaBelle Pete LaBelle is offline
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

Still amazes me the amount of trimming that builders would put into the early machines, and that customers would pay for the extras.

Pete
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Old 09-26-2013, 10:20:15 AM
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

There were some guys with their "thinking caps" on back then. They knew a locomotive could go down tracks and they were determined to build something useful to run on land.

This one hits close to home. "Cousin" Philander Standish constructed this "Mayflower" plowing engine in 1867, in California. I don't know how successful it was as a "plowing engine" but it must have been able to move about, even with its cumbersome size?

I call Philander "cousin" as I'm assuming I'm related to him somehow. I am a Great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandson of Miles (Myles) Standish, America's first National Guardsman... Gary
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Old 09-26-2013, 01:54:23 PM
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

I guess I got the cart ahead of the horse with my first post. This is the back side of that 1862 trade card of the Tracto-mobile.
Gary
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Old 09-26-2013, 02:02:41 PM
GreasyIron GreasyIron is offline
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

The English patent was awarded before the US patent.

Could that be enough information to imply English design? If so, that could further explain the attention paid to fancy trim.
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Old 09-26-2013, 04:07:53 PM
cyberbadger cyberbadger is offline
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

Quote:
Originally Posted by 20 Reeves Highwheeler View Post
I guess I got the cart ahead of the horse with my first post. This is the back side of that 1862 trade card of the Tracto-mobile.
Gary
I was totally wrong on it not potentially having military purposes, "For Moving Heavy Artilery"

-CB
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Old 09-26-2013, 05:23:08 PM
J Dayman J Dayman is offline
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

"I don't understand the hopper in the front unless it stored grain.

-CB"

For fuel perhaps? (coal or wood)

The firedoor is right behind the hopper
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Old 09-26-2013, 05:41:00 PM
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

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Originally Posted by cyberbadger View Post
I don't understand the hopper in the front unless it stored grain.

-CB
Check out this trencher. The fuel bunker is at the front of the machine similar to the tractomotive.

OSHA would have had a field day with this thing!

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Old 09-26-2013, 09:41:41 PM
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

Beth, I guess it is the OSHA comment that made me do this? This one is digging in Lewistown, Montana, where I was born.



This end appears to have a coal box for the upright boiler. I don't see as nice a water supply as your digger has! They must scare away breakdowns having that drill press mounted on the side of the platform? Gary

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Old 09-26-2013, 10:26:19 PM
cyberbadger cyberbadger is offline
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

I know I'm not an experienced steamer, but I love the challenge of what is it, and what did it do.

I learn all the time.

Even though I appreciate traction engines, I don't think I'll ever own one.

But I challenge myself with new videos or pictures of traction engines, and I'm getting better at identifying them.

The odd balls are the most fun for me. They had ALL KINDS of steam contraptions.

-CB
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Old 09-27-2013, 12:03:56 AM
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Default Re: Tractomotive circa 1862

Quote:
Originally Posted by 20 Reeves Highwheeler View Post
There were some guys with their "thinking caps" on back then. They knew a locomotive could go down tracks and they were determined to build something useful to run on land.

This one hits close to home. "Cousin" Philander Standish constructed this "Mayflower" plowing engine in 1867, in California. I don't know how successful it was as a "plowing engine" but it must have been able to move about, even with its cumbersome size?

I call Philander "cousin" as I'm assuming I'm related to him somehow. I am a Great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandson of Miles (Myles) Standish, America's first National Guardsman... Gary
There is a Standish gas vapor single-cylinder engine in the collection at UC Davis, IIRC. If it's the one I'm thinking of, it had a slanted base so it could be mounted on the rib of a boat. It was running before I was there in the late 70's, but I never saw it. :-(

Lyle
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