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Manbench Industries; Purveyors of general mayhem since 1994, a blog to follow the crazed, possibly deranged projects and emotive musings, of an undergraduate engineer, and an apprentice organ builder who have always felt they were born in the wrong age. Follow us as we, re-write history, learn lost skills, discover strange new worlds, break things, rant at things, mend things, make new things and generally find ways of passing the day instead of doing "proper work" !

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Preston Services Christmas Open Day

After spending the 28th collecting the Marshall portable, we all went up to Preston Services Christmas Open Day on the 29th, for a day looking around the fantastic (but expensive!) collection of engines for sale.

There were some gorgeous pieces on sale including this fantastic Nielson & Co Twin Beam Engine built for the Great Exhibition in 1851. If I'd had a spare 37K this would have made a lovely centerpiece in the living room...

Preston Services has a lot of engines that have been repatriated from abroad, many from Argentina and Chile. It's fascinating to see the bodged repairs done to the engines just to keep them going where there is a lack of spare parts. This included wooden flywheels, corrugated iron smoke boxes and wired together chimney base castings, but the best had to be this checker plate bodge onto the trunk guide of a Marshall traction engine...

Finally, this little twin cylinder workshop engine was gorgeous. There is something I really love about engineering of this period. Everything has had so much care put into it, and the design shows a high level of finesse. Just look at the shape of the crank web...unforunatley, only one of the crank webs looked like this as the engine had been a garden ornament for 30 odd years and the other side was well rotten! Much of this engine needed re-making rather than restoration, but I thought she was lovely!

 The Engineer.

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