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Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33300 11/28/15 07:56 PM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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hello everyone tonight

Well to finish the attachment of the upper bearing------

This strap is held in place by a tapered key that is about 7" long (roughly)--it passes through the steel strap on both sides of the pitman, is rectangular in shape and about 1\2 " in thickness, and tapering from 1\2" on the one end to 1.5" on the other end

You can see that the taper of the key is very small for a purpose, which is to tighten and pull downwards the steel strap as it is pounded in--you probably are wondering how this is effected well the mortise hole through the pitman is in line with these two holes through the metal band but not quite the mortise hole extends downwards to give the tapered key enough room to continue the pressure downwards until everything is very tight, then the key which has various small holes on the smaller tapered end, one is selected that has just exited the metal band and a small bolt is slipped through and double nutted to ensure that it will not come loose with vibration

Now you will say "whoa"--how do you get this set up over the 1`" pin on the guide block---to be continued--

-- well enjoy for now--

NH

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33301 11/30/15 02:49 AM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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hello everyone tonight

The Guide block which will be described a little later is in itself a very important part of this whole setup, it looks very crude at first glance, it has very few metal parts, and could be constructed right on site from sections of hardwood that was probably available right at hand--like most of the parts that make up the mill itself--enough about the head block for now back to attaching the pitman to it as we work our way up from the barrel wheel----

before we attach it to the head block, it will be necessary to ensure that the centre line of the pitman is directly underneath the attaching point on the head block--well now out comes the heavy plumb bob with a fine nylon line-it is dropped down from the centre of the attaching point on the head block to the pin on the offset crank on the axle of the barrel wheel. The axle at this point has no pitman on it, and will be revolved slowly from the bottom of the stroke to top dead centre, at the bottom of the stroke calculations are taken where the plumb touches it and then at the top also where the plumb touches it--this will verify how level the axle of the turbine is, at this point some adjustment of the wood bearings supporting the axle may have to be made to ensure that all is perfectly level.

I might ad here that an axle out of level will destroy the attaching bearing in a very short time, so no mistakes, or all your work is for naught!!!

If all seems good then the pitman is once again slipped on the pin installing spacers on both sides of the pitman to hold it its proper position, these spacers are large flat washers specially made for this particular task, finally a wrought iron bolt it slipped through the hole in the pin and lock nutted to ensure that it remains, until it needs to be removed

Just a note here the pin on the crank is about 1.5" wider than the width of the pitman, this width is needed to be able to compensate for sideways movement of the mill building, in relation to the position of the turbine, which will not move with the building, it is my experience that showed that our mill continuously moved towards the lagoon in 50 years of operation, causing problems with pitman attachments such as wear on the pitman bearings due to operating the mill with out of perpendicular attaching points---our mill actually moved so much that we had to take drastic measures to keep it in operation, until we could reposition the barrel wheel each time during 3 bebuilds

One of these drastic measures was to cable the mill structure below ground level to a dead man, this slowed things down but did not eradicate it completely

well so much tonight, didn't get the crank attached but we will

enjoy

NH

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33303 12/01/15 02:25 AM
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hello everyone tonight

Well here we are slowly working up to the upper pitman connection at the floor guide block

This is the way we did it----having turned the turbine shaft and the pitman to top dead centre and anchored it firmly, I moved to the upper level where the vertical blade, and its guide assembly is located--the next procedure is to remove the blade by removing the front wooden guides, and removing the single bolt attaching the bottom of the blade to the top of the guide block

Then the trick is to attach a light rope to the top of the guide block and pull the guide block upwards about 16" and securing it there--

Now going back to the upper split bearing of the pitman, the long slender key is removed and slowly slide upwards the strap off the top of the pitman, leaving the bottom half of the bearing on the top of the pitman, and taking the upper half with you along with the metal strap

Now you slip the metal strap through and over the 1" hardened steel bolt on the bottom of the guide block and slowly lower the unit back down over the end of the pitman, installing the upper half of the bearing in place at the same time

Once down in place the tapered key is reinserted and secured as previously explained

This completes the installation of the newly renovated pitman on the turbine shaft and securing it to the blade's guide block that is directly below the blade, and which is housed between 2 vertical hewn timbers that are secured firmly at their tops to the massive 20" square ash timber that spans across the building just below floor level

These timbers sit on other horizontal timbers, each vertical timber having a tenon exceedingly smaller than the mortise hole in all directions

I have been doing a lot of talking here so could anyone have a suggestion why the tenons on the bottom of each post is smaller than the mortises that they reside in?

enjoy

NH

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33311 12/02/15 02:49 AM
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hello everyone tonight

Well here is the answer--the 2 guide vertical timbers are independently adjustable by placing wood wedges from the bottom crowding the timber's vertical stance or position very accurately, what I did was adjust one timber so that it seemed to be correctly positioned and then lower the guide block down and crowd over the opposite timber with wedges until the guide block will travel full distance up and down without binding or loosening--

Now one little thing that I did was to raise the unit by rotating the turbine manually to top dead centre , then at this point from the centre of the blade's attaching point I dropped down a plumb bob and marked it accurately on the side of the pitman--now I mean accurately using a fine nylon line, then I lowered the pitman gently by once again rotating the turbine manually to the bottom of the stroke and once again checking if the plumb line crosses the previous mark, if all is well it should be lined up perfectly if not more adjustment is the order of the day, this needs to be repeated until you are completely satisfied that it is as accurate as you can make it

Once that has been accomplished you are able to move to the next step

I might say that the directions I am giving you are not available as far as I know in any historical mechanics book, and I hope it helps someone someday maintain our historical mill legacy, I always felt proud to be able to pass on some of my knowledge of this old equipment to a new generation

I also realize there are many very knowledgeable people out there that operate old mills, but operating and repairing and maintaining are horses of 2 different colours--even myself in the years gone by would look at a large empty hole in the first storey level where the turbine and pitman was located during a regular interval rebuild.

With everything removed and the onus is on you to ensure that everything would be back to operating order which in most cases was about 6 months away, with operating season to begin once more at that time--it sure separated the men from the boys for sure--but I must say I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge

Early on in my career I needed advise on some aspects of the rebuild, it was at this time I realized I was completely alone because 90% of the other mills used other types of water power mostly water wheels of the overshot , undershot or breast wheels, while other used a more modern metal turbines, all early but did not relate to the early horizontal barrel wheel that I was working with in the saw mill, and its associated linkages

Some early books would show the various parts of the mill but no explanation of how they were used or how for instance you inserted them in working position

well sorry for rambling on but I will be getting back to the work at hand

enjoy

NH

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33314 12/04/15 03:23 PM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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hello everyone tonight

Well lets talk about the guide block --this is a quite an important part of the whole scheme of things it guides the upper end of the pitman in its proper orientation to the blade as it delivers vertical motion from the turbine's rotating motion, it has to be constructed to withstand the jerking motions as the turbine speeds up to cutting speed both at the upper and lower ends of the stroke

at the upper end especially it has to reverse the upwards travel of the weight of the heavy blade which is about 50 lbs. in a few slit seconds, but, if you think about it, as the pitman approaches top dead centre and before it begins its return down it has some sideways motion across the arc which has no upwards motion so it helps to lessen the effect of the up travel, and the stress and strain on all the linkages

now back to the guide block--

it is quite heavily constructed, and is fashioned in such a way that it can continue to work and work day after day week after week and yes year after year without failing

the whole (main) part of the unit if my memory is correct is about 30" wide and 24" high give or take a little made from 2.5" hardwood usually white burl oak, the wrought iron linkages at the top for the blade and at the bottom for the pitman are connected vertically through the unit, with (2) -- 3\4" bolts which take the jarring strain and also hold everything together

I might say right here that the mill's guide block has never needed to be changed since it went into operation in June of 1961 when it cut its first plank--quite a record--cutting approx. 20000 bd. ft. yearly--you can do the math--

more to this story

enjoy NH

Last edited by northern hewer; 12/04/15 03:26 PM.
Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33315 12/05/15 02:38 AM
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hello everyone tonight

The Guide block continued-------------

We have generally ascertained the dimensions and composition of the guide block but there are other unusual characteristics that make this part very interesting----

enjoy

NH

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33316 12/05/15 01:17 PM
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Dave Shepard Offline
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That is an impressive amount of lumber to have sawn on that type of machinery.


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Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33317 12/06/15 01:27 AM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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hello everyone tonight

Hi Dave,

Thanks for coming on board.

It is amazing but the fact is that part of my responsibilities was to purchase the white pine logs that would be sawn throughout the next season.

This was really enjoyable because #1 I enjoyed treaking through the bush to actually see the quality of the logs before cutting and #2-- in most cases I selected and marked the ones that I was going to purchase.

I worked very close with suppliers to ensure that their quotes reflected the quality standards on the purchase order, as we all know the lowest price is usually not the best, or what is required by our maintenance personnel.

You know it was sort of unique because our mill's production pretty well filled the maintenance needs of UCV's small early village portrayal, the carpenter shop, the cabinet shop, the agriculture division, the blacksmith shop, and any other needs.

Sometimes the suppliers were taken back by our strict purchasing rules but as you probably well know white pine is notorious for black hidden knots, and it is imperative that the pine has started out its life in a thick stand of trees so that it gains height quickly, and the young lower limbs disappear quickly letting the trees attain girth of good quality wood devoid of knots.

I did it for so many years that as soon as I entered the bush I could tell what kind of lumber would be forthcoming from the logs--having said that you do get fooled once in a while.

One thing--- I refused to buy logs already sawn and in a nice neat skid I wanted to see them prior to felling.

I remember once entering a bush up near Calabogie Ontario Canada what a wonderful stand of pine--they held their size for nearly 30 feet and then tapering gently to 60 feet +-' just a few limbs on the top, and the wind was gently swaying them back and forth--.

This was great country for northern white pine in the early 1800's and I envisioned in my eye the countryside as it was then covered with a heavy growth of large trees, in 100 years the whole area was clear cut and exported to Britain, the logs were floated down the Ottawa river in rafts to Montreal, a lot of them squared in the bush by hand with broad axes before rafting.

It seems I always get off line from the topic but I guess this is part of the overall picture, and the reason mills were needed such as the 1865 mill at UCV.

Thank goodness that someone had the foresight to go that extra distance and convince the powers in Toronto at that time to create a depository of mills, homes, barns, shops and all other out buildings which would have been lost for ever.

I would like to take my hat off to Mr. Peter John Stokes the restoration architect that overseen every aspect of detail as the village grew during the construction phase 1958--1961 , and whom was a very close friend of mine and my father--he really dug his heels in when things were needed to be done properly.



Thanks again Dave

I hope everyone else looking in are enjoying these chats, don't be afraid to say hello, your name and where you reside, I encourage any input.

Enjoy this Christmas season as it approaches.

Also thanks to the TFG guild members for making this chat room possible, my hat also goes off to you keep up the good work.

Richard

NH

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33318 12/06/15 02:05 PM
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Dave Shepard Offline
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I saw mostly Eastern white pine. I always try to get the best possible logs. It always pays to have good material.


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Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #33319 12/08/15 03:25 AM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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hello everyone tonight

once again thanks for saying hello Dave

Getting back to the Guide Block-------------------

Now we have more or less explored the relative shape of the guide block and some of its strengthening features, now to the wear points--there are 3 on each side--

Reviewing the main part of the head block it is about 30" wide and 24" in length--now to this rectangular block which is made up of 3 cross members of 10" width material-- 2.5" in thickness--these in turn are mortised and tenanted into two vertical pieces of the same thickness on each (both) edges, 4" in width--this is well done with tight fitting joinery work--the tenants on the horizontals extending completely through the vertical pieces--on the work table small hardwood wedges are driven into the ends of the tenants, with a slight application of glue expanding the ends until there is absolutely no chance of movement--through each mortise and tenant is placed (3) hardwood 1\2" pins which are also glued, (no draw bore is necessary)-to finish this out a sanding and finishing of the pin ends is in order

We are now ready to move on to the application of the Guide Block's replaceable wear strips these are to be applied so that each year or oftener they can be replaced as required without altering the Guide Block itself in any way, and should be made up in sets and be available for immediate use to lessen any down time during the production

There is a little trick to this which we will discuss tomorrow, and also discuss at length the procedures necessary to be taken upon the renewal of a set of wear strips should that be needed

Is everyone following me so far?

Any questions?

I am trying to be as clear as possible, but may be missing some technical points

Be assured I will not move on from the guide block until I feel everyone is comfortable with my explanations as we move along

You can see I am sure this rough looking mill is beginning to exhibit some very fine features, and I assure you they will get finer as we move along

enjoy

NH

Last edited by northern hewer; 12/08/15 03:31 AM.
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