This 15 HP M. Rumely steam engine is owned by Jerred Ruble. I get
the privilege of running Jerred's engines at the Heritage Park of North
Iowa. I told Jerred I would be interested in restoring one of his
engines and in October, 2005 he brought this M. Rumely to my
place. Jerred also has several other projects in process
that is on his website
#4332 is a 15 HP simple made in 1903. It has an 8 3/4 bore x 10"
stroke. The engine is pretty much complete and the boiler is in
good shape. The engine itself was stuck.
I usually have a halloween party in my shop so the first thing that
happened is Lyn decorated the engine for the party. It definately
was a conversation piece. I had filled the cylinder with diesel
fuel and ATF and filled all the oil cups also.
After the party, I started cleaning it up. I removed about 30
gallons of ashes and coon nests from the ash pan. The boiler was
really dirty and it was a nice weekend, so I drug it outside to wash
the boiler out. You can see some of the scale on the ground in
these pictures. I loosened all of the bearing caps and broke the
engine loose. I think the engine was mostly stuck in the bearings
and the piston was not stuck at all.
The plumbing was all shot so I took pictures of it and removed the
plumbing. Zach even helped out by scraping grease.
The governor drive shaft and housing was worn from too many years of
dirt and too little oil. I measured around .050 slop from the
wear. This needed to be fixed to prevent any further bevel gear
wear. I decided to bore out the housing and use two oil
empregnated bronze bushings. The problem was I didn't have
anything that could accurately bore 6 1/2" deep except my lathe, so I
made a fixture plate that bolted to the compound. The plate was
supposed to be full of tapped holes but whatever steel it was made out
of work hardened and I couldn't tap it. So I just welded nuts to
the plate to hold the governor housing. The boring bar needed to
be 1/2" diameter and at least 7" long, so I built one out of drill
rod. Then my friend Al Burgess loaned me a solid carbid bore bar
with those dimensions. That thing worked great. Absolutely
no spring back with the amount of cut I was taking. I know I would have
had a lot more problems using my home made bore bar. The second
picture shows how the governor was mounted and aligned on the
table. The third picture shows me boring the inside
bushing. The original shaft was badly scored and I built a new
copy from drill rod. The fifth picture shows the shaft and
bushings in place. The bushings were made from oil impregnated
bronze round stock. The bushings were 1 1/2" long at the pulley
end and 1" long (the longest that would fit) at the governor end.
After reassembling the governor, I wanted to test run it to make sure I
didn't have the clearances (about .002-.005) too tight. I clamped
it to my lathe, oiled it up and ran it about 10 minutes without any
problems. It took 2 weekends to get the lathe modified, fixture
plates built, bushings made and governor machined.
Here is a current picture of the engine.
The cylinder rod was really rusted and pitted. It was so bad I
was concerned that it would tear up the packing in no time. I
cleaned the cylinder rod really well and then coated it with JB
weld. After it cured, I turned down the rod back to the original
size. After polishing with emery cloth it is now much smoother
and should last a long time.
The Arnold valve gear has a slider that helps guide the valve
rod. This slider used to have a drip oiler on it, but apparently
not in a long time. I found the valve rod to be very worn and the
brass guide plates nearly worn through. It looks as though the
bottom plate was worn through and the previous owner exchanged the top
and bottom wear plate, filling the extra space with wood and sheet
metal spacers. One problem with doing this was that the oil hole
that should have been in the top plate was now in the bottom and there
was no way that this was going to get any lubrication. The valve
rod was also worn about 1/8" undersize from rubbing against the
packing. To fix that, I turned the worn area down and built it
back up again with weld. After straightening the rod, I then
turned the built up area to match the rest of the rod. The design
of the guide allows the brass plates to be adjusted on all four sides
so I decided to just machine off the worn area on the valve rod until
it was square again. New wear plate were made from 360 brass.
I spent the last two weekends removing components and cleaning
parts. Jerred stopped by to check on the progress and give me
advice and we decided that the front
tube sheet would need to be built up in a few areas and the flues would
need to be replaced. The flues are coming out next weekend.
At this point, it is not hard to just remove all the gearing, wheels
and engine so I did that. It will make cleaning and painting much
easier. The wheels and gearing will go to a sandblaster to get
cleaned. I found the original platform under extra boards added
at a later time. There are a lot of steam engine parts now
spread over my shop and still a lot of work to do before anything can
go back together!
Jerred Ruble, Brian Patterson, and Eric Bremer Came over to remove the
flues and help me load some of the heavier parts onto a trailer for a
trip to the sandblaster. The engine has 48 2" flues - 6 feet
long. Some were paper thin and others had been replaced at some
time in the engines history. The firebox door was extremely
small, so that is why Brian and Eric were recruited to do the work.
Brian's first attempt at entering the firebox was a failure. He
gave up and we sent Eric in.
After listening to a bunch a jokes about his weight, Brian removed his
coveralls and made a successful second attempt. This was lucky,
since we didn't want to see Brian remove any more clothes.
Brian is cutting the flues from the front sheet.
The result of a full days effort.
Current status: The Rumely has been reduced to a bare boiler.