The Restoration of a Sawyer-Massey Steam Engine
1919 22-68 HP Sawyer-Massey
Built in: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Restored by: G.S. Tuck and W.M. Reid, St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada
With the help of Dave Hooten and John Calder, I found this engine near Hamilton, Ontario. It was sitting outside on a grassy knoll with the wheels sunk into the sand six to eight inches deep.
I had my D Meter handy, so I spent a half hour checking boiler thickness. The lightest spot I could find was 0.342 inches. I knew then this boiler had the potential to operate at 175 P.S.I. However, there were some serious inside firebox problems, some wasting at bottom of sheets, some unauthorized welding.
With this knowledge at hand, I made a deal. A few days later, we took our float, winched the engine out of the sand, loaded it and took it home to St. Thomas.
It was reasonably intact, with the exception of most all clutch parts. The rear platform and tanks were all missing, and the wheel cletes were worn down to the rivets.
Originally, this engine was owned by the Ontario Department of Highways (and still has the bronze plate on the smoke box). This probably accounts for the worn wheel cletes.
We also found the firebox door missing, all the rings broken in the Gould valve, and the valve cover needed machining and scraping. The valve and valve seat both needed scraping (about four days work). The valve rod was replaced with a stainless steel one.
The piston rod was sent out, chromed and ground. A new wood block was made from hard maple for the wood valve gear, a new curved gib was cast and machined for the valve gear.
Crosshead ways were scraped by hand (two days). New piston rings were installed. The crosshead and shoes had to be turned true in the lathe.
The complete engine was rebabbitted, including rear cannon bearings, main shaft, intermediate shaft and differential shaft.
It was fortunate for us that Ralph Henderson loaned us a large ball of babbitt putty. We babbitted bearings for about a week, and I don't think we had one leak, and we reclaimed the whole ball for future use.
The differential was all seized up and had to be freed up and have new shafts made for the bevel pinion gears.
Rear wheel drive pinion had to be machined and a new bronze bushing pressed in.
Front wheels were bored and babbitted for the tapered axles. Both front wheels were respoked.
Patterns had to be made for rear wheel cletes. We made four RH and four LH patterns so we could cast eight cletes at a time. Ninty-six cletes were cast, drilled, fitted and hot riveted onto the wheels.
The rear platform and hitch etc., all had to be fabricated.
Below is a list of castings that had to be made:
1. Caps for all oil galleys.
2. Complete fire door.
3. Feed water heater end castings.
4. Clutch lever and quadrant.
5. Clutch shifter ring.
6. Clutch shifter collar.
7. Clutch shifter arm.
8. Four cast water tank brackets.
9. Ninety-six rear wheel cletes.
10. All new boiler hand holds.
11. New hand hold covers.
12. Dome cover.
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