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Old 11-30-2008, 09:00 PM
oldred oldred is offline
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I have mentioned this old beast here before. Up around Cumberland Gap Tn there is a mine machine shop that has an old horizontal press that was originally steam powered, this thing has a ram at least 10" to 12" in diameter and the whole press including the huge cast iron frame must weigh at least 5 tons and probably more! On the side of this huge casting is the foundry name (location somewhere in Ohio but I forget the city) and a casting date of 1867. The kicker here is that to these guys this thing is just another tool in the shop and they use the darn thing everyday! They have rigged an electric motor to the pump drive shaft but they still use the old hand operated clutch that once engaged the steam driven drive shaft, the pump assembly resembles a miniature steam locomotive drive. I have seen this thing in operation and it is a brute to say the least, I have no idea how much force it has but I saw it bend a 3" steel bar with no effort at all! It really is a shame to see this old machine used and abused by those guys who could not care less and I am sure it has seen more deterioration in the last 4 or 5 years than in the past century, it really does belong in a museum somewhere or at least should be in the hands of a caring shop machinery collector.
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