5"? Rider-Ericsson

NYEthan

New member
I acquired this engine as well as two others over 2 years ago. I now have some time to put toward them. I thought Id start with the smallest one first. The bore measures 5" but I have only seen other listings as 4,6,8,10. Ive made new piston seals out of rubber and tired to start it Sunday. It would turn over 3 or 4 revolutions then stop. With little effort I could keep it spinning by "helping" the flywheel every once and a while. About the time I started to get tired I noticed air leaks from the very bottom of the water jacket to baseplate. Im assuming I'm losing to much air there to keep it going. Whats your thoughts? Should I air test it with an air compressor? Is there a target spec for air pressure and how long it should hold?
Not crucial to it running because I'm fine with running a water hose to the water jacket for now but I am missing some pump parts I think. I also don't really know whats supposed to be there either. Any help?

Thanks
Ethan
 

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Marv in Minn

Subscriber
5" was one of the sizes of the Rider hot air engines.
the original engines used soft leather seals for reduced friction.
yes, air leakage will hinder their operation.
can you post a pic of the water pump parts you have?
 

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Brent Rowell

Subscriber
Ethan,
You shouldn't have any air (or water) leaks at all--any air leaking will keep the engine from running. The engine should have some compression so that there's some "bounce back" when you turn the flywheel. It's possible to check with an air compressor and some soapy water to look for leaks although you can usually hear them without a compressor. I also doubt the rubber seals will work. Each cylinder should have a pair of soft and flexible leather seals--enough to seal from air leaks but not cause much friction at all. You can make and form these in the cylinder itself.

Looks like you have the upper part of what might have been a deep well pump and in that case the rest of the pump was probably left down in the well. But it's not hard to rig up an old or modern brass well pump and use that on the side of the engine.

Do you have a nameplate with serial no.? If not the number may be stamped elsewhere on the engine.
 

NYEthan

New member
Marv, here is a better photo of what I have for a pump.

I plan to make better gaskets for the baseplate to cold cylinder and cold cylinder to bridge this weekend. (please correct me if i'm miss labeling the items I don't have any parts diagram to go by so just making up names as I go. surprised I haven't used doohickey or thingamajig yet.)

Brent, I think ill need more instruction on what you mean by "You can make and form these in the cylinder itself." also do you have a source to get the preferred leather material from? Also thoughts on sources for pumps? I may just make a plate to seal up the hole for now.
I do have name plates for 2 of the 3 engines I acquired but don't think I do for this one. I did notice a stamped number on the end of the crank. Not sure if it would be a part number or not tho.

The 5" seems to be in just a dismantled shape. The 8" from what I can see has a crack in the water jacket. The 6" is rusted to the point that its going to take a lot of effort to find out why it was done away with.

I like the idea of getting them back to running order but I'm on a budget. I may have to sell one to fund the others. What would reasonable prices be?
 

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Marv in Minn

Subscriber
this is the shallow well water pump on my 5" Rider.
you have the head for a deep well pump.
i have made pump parts using cup leathers and check plates
in a short brass pipe with a bottom reducer fitting to replace the pipe in your pic.
otherwise i like Brent's idea of fitting a deep well foot pump to yours.
 

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Brent Rowell

Subscriber
I fitted an ordinary brass well pump to this Ericsson engine a few years ago but unfortunately you can't see much of it in the video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jW4pFAACOhE&t=7s

You can barely make it out below the 'table' at the 27-28 second mark in the video. It only required a little plumbing and a shortening of the pump's rod. This engine also originally had a deep well pump.
 

Brent Rowell

Subscriber
Making leathers is a longer conversation so we'll have to talk about it. And I see from your photo that there isn't room to put in a brass well pump like I did on the Ericsson, so better follow Marv's suggestions. Prices and values also can be all over the place (extremely variable) based on condition, so also a longer conversation. That number stamped in the end of the crank should be the serial no. Do you mind sharing it?
 

NYEthan

New member
Thanks for all the pump info guys. Im going to work on getting it running before worrying to much about it pumping water. But what should I be thinking about as far as GPM and PSI when I do start building a pump? The number stamped on the crank is 12522. The flywheel spokes are straight. I read somewhere last night they changed to a curve on the later models? So my next question may be obvious to you. What year do you think it might be?
 

Brent Rowell

Subscriber
Ethan,
Based on your serial no. I'd say the engine is from around 1900-1904 although it's impossible to know for sure as the company's records have not survived. The earliest versions were either Rider Engine Co. or DeLamater Iron Works. For some reason almost all the 5" Riders like yours had straight spokes regardless of when they were made.

According to the old catalogs the 5" Rider pumped about 6 gpm to 50 ft elevation which is equivalent to about 22 psi. But if you make a pump it really won't matter as you just need water to circulate through the water jacket to keep it cool. By the way, you should be able to run the engine for nearly an hour before there's any issue with overheating (i.e. without water flowing through it).
 

Reed S. Benton

Subscriber
Are you using hard coal for fuel? A local friend, Jim Boice, now deceased, restored a 5" Rider about 30 years ago and had the symptoms you describe--almost runs but needs a helping hand on the flywheel to keep it moving. Hard coal was the answer as it produced the heat to make it go. Be sure the water pump is pumping relatively cool water--cool to touch. As water warms up, the engine's efficiency goes down.
 

Andrew Mackey

Moderator
The NJAEMC has a 5" Rider-Erricson we just finished restoring. It has a gas burner for heat.If you do not have circulating COOL water, the engine will not run on its own for very long. it needs the temperature differential between hot and cold in order to run properly.
 

Brent Rowell

Subscriber
I've run both Rider and Ericsson engines for nearly an hour without cooling water--they run fine for that long as long as your heat is not cranked up too high. Time to stop (and the engine will slow) when the top of the cylinder gets hot. The engine above had other problems, but mostly the urethane seals. He's since made new leather seals and it runs fine.
 
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