Triple Expansion Marine Engines

johnblack5
6th November 2010, 23:13
Does anyone have any drawings or photographs of Triple Expansion engines engines built in the UK. I plan to build a model of the engines fitted to the Liberty Ships and really need a lot of detail. So much was destroyed when all the yards closed.

surfaceblow
7th November 2010, 02:53
There is a picture of a Triple Expansion Engine in the ASME pamphlet. http://files.asme.org/asmeorg/Communities/History/Landmarks/3126.pdf

You do not need to get a picture or plans of a UK built engine since the interchangeable engine parts were made by 35 manufacturers worldwide. The engines were 2500 H.P triple expansion steam engines, originally designed by North East Marine Engineering Ltd. UK.

About 3,259 engines were built by twenty machine shops manufactured the engines in the USA, four in Canada, and twelve in the British Isles. The following information is from http://users.actcom.co.il/meccano/liberty.html web site but it does not to be working at the present time.

"The engine was 21 feet long, and 19 feet tall. Imagine a piston and its rod weighing 4,900 pounds moving 4 feet up and down 76 times every minute at full speed. It was supplied with steam at 220 pounds gauge pressure and 440 degrees Fahrenheit temperature at the throttle by two oil fired Scotch boilers. The engine is designed to exhaust at 26 inches vacuum to a surface condenser bolted to the back columns of the engine. The term 'triple expansion' refers to the fact that steam is fed in turn to the three cylinders, one after the other. The cylinders are named High Pressure (24 inches diameter), Intermediate Pressure (37 Inches diameter) and Low Pressure (70 inches diameter), and all have a stroke of 48 inches. The cylinders and their associated valve chests are bolted together forming a unit block. The cylinder arrangement from forward to aft is as follows: high Pressure, intermediate pressure, and low pressure. The direction of rotation of the engine, looking forward, is clockwise, with the crank sequence as follows: High pressure, low pressure, intermediate pressure.

Boiler pressure steam is supplied first to the high pressure cylinder via its valve, and is then exhausted through the same valve to the intermediate valve and cylinder. From there, the steam passes directly into the low pressure valve and cylinder. The cylinders become progressively larger, but even though there is a drop in steam pressure through each successive cylinder, the work done by each cylinder is therefore the same. Exhausting to a vacuum ensures that the maximum possible expansion takes place in the low pressure cylinder.

The valve gear is of the Stephensen link type. The eccentric rods are crossed and attached to the eccentric straps at the bottom, and to each end of the link bars on top. The valve stems bolted to the valves are attached to the link die block. The link bars are extended on one end to attach the activating drag rods which are moved by the reversing lever mechanism.

When the reversing lever is in the ahead position, the die block on the end of the valve spindle is adjacent to the upper end of the ahead eccentric rod. If the lever is moved to the opposite position, the top end of the astern eccentric rod is adjacent to the valve spindle, and the engine will then run backwards with maximum power. If the reversing lever is moved to the mid position, there is so little movement on the valve that the steam supply to the cylinder is cut off.

The engine bed plate is of cast iron. Cross girders provide flat bottom recesses for the main bearings. The columns are of box section, there being three front (right) and three back (left) columns. The lower ends of the columns are bolted to the bedplate and the upper ends to the cylinder block. Cross head guides are bolted to the back columns.

The crankshaft is of the built up type, made up in two sections with the high pressure and intermediate pressure forming the forward section, and the low pressure the after section. The crank pins and shafts are shrunk onto the crank webs. All eccentrics are bolted to the forward shaft section. A large turning gear is attached to the rear section, and this allows for very slow speed rotation of the crankshaft for repairs and service operations.

The piston sliding in the cylinder is fixed to the piston rod, which projects through the lower end of the cylinder, through a steam tight joint, the stuffing box. The lower end of the piston is attached to the crosshead, which works in slides that guide the piston rod and prevent any side strain being imposed on it by the angular thrust of the connecting rod. It will be realized that when the piston is half way down its stroke, the connecting rod is at an angle to the piston rod, and if it were not for the presence of the guides and slides, a severe bending strain would be put on the piston rod and its gland.

Reversing is accomplished through a small single cylinder reversing steam engine, to the crankshaft of which a reversing worm is attached. A hand reversing wheel is also fitted. A pin on the reversing gear connects to the reverse shaft through a drag rod.

The turning engine is a single cylinder steam driven engine, mounted on the after end of the bedplate. It operates through two sets of worm gears to the crankshaft of the engine. The engine is reversible so that it may be used for setting the valves or making repairs.

The other auxiliaries mounted on and driven off the main engine are the air pump, two bilge pumps and the evaporator feed pump. The pumps are driven together from a massive beam which is moved by beam links from the low pressure cylinder crosshead.

Mounted on brackets integral to the columns just forward of the pum when the engine develops full ahead power.

Water cooling service is provided for the eccentrics, main bearings, crankpin boxes and crosshead guides.

Forced lubrication is provided for the high pressure cylinder and packing of the piston rod, and also to the intermediate slide valve. Tallow cocks are used for the low pressure slide valve and the intermediate and low pressure valve stems. Oil boxes are provided for the main bearings, crank pins and many other moving parts.

The main steam pipe is 8 inches in diameter and the exhaust pipe is 25 inches in diameter. To permit admitting high pressure steam to the various cylinders, a bypass starting valve is bolted to the throttle valve, and pipe connections made to the intermediate and low pressure cylinders as well as the reversing engine.

The thrust bearing is bolted to the ship's tank tops, and transmits longitudinal forces derived from the propeller to the ship itself, and not the crankshaft of the engine.

The propeller shaft is 13 1/2 inches in diameter, and the single propeller is a right hand, four bladed manganese bronze or cast steel, 18 feet in diameter. The blades are of airfoil section."



There is a picture of a triple expansion engine model made of meccano parts.

http://ashok_banerjee.tripod.com/Meccanoville/Israel.htm

http://www.users.zetnet.co.uk/dms/meccano/wlms9906/wlmsjun99a.html

http://users.actcom.co.il/meccano/liberty.html

Joe

johnblack5
7th November 2010, 15:26
Many thanks for all the info especially the fact that they used crossed rods. Any idea as to how they made the rods, I assume that must have been heated then pulled into a fixture to maintain alignment, bend being made at both top and bottom.
The castings I have been able to obtain show a design with columns at the rear of the engine and turned supports at the front.

Best regards


John

surfaceblow
7th November 2010, 16:42
John

I could not say how the cross rods were made for the Liberty Ship Engines at the time. They could have been build up pieces or machined out of one piece.

There are a lot of you tube videos of steam engines operating. A lot of the Titanic movie engine room scenes were filmed on the Jeremiah O'Brien and short videos are available.

This You Tube video is an actual engine operating at a slow speed.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oMC3Jm-45aU

Joe

surfaceblow
9th November 2010, 21:19
John

I forgot about the Mariner's Museum in Newport News VA. had a Liberty Ship Engine on display. There web site is http://www.marinersmuseum.org/

John

johnblack5
10th November 2010, 16:37
Many thanks, I will contact them.

John

surfaceblow
12th November 2010, 05:34
Life Magazine did a photo spread of the Hendy Iron Works' plant, by clicking on the other photos available, there are pictures of Liberty ship steam engines. A number of pictures also show foundry work. The whole run of pictures was taken during WWII, when Hendy Iron Works. The web site states the pictures could be used for personal use only no commercial use.

http://images.google.com/hosted/life/l?q=hendy+planer&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dhendy%2Bplaner%26gbv%3D2%26hl%3Den%26 sa%3DG&imgurl=e77f782caefe29bc


Joe

kewl dude
12th November 2010, 05:56
http://americanhistory.si.edu/onthemove/collection/object_59.html

“Built by John W. Sullivan in New York, New York, this 750 horsepower, triple expansion steam engine was installed new in the US Lighthouse Service's tender Oak. The steam was furnished by one 3-furnace boiler of the Scotch type using coal as fuel. In 1934 it was converted to oil-burning furnaces. In addition to the engine, the Smithsonian collected other parts of the Oak's power plant, including pumps, a generator, condenser, the steering engine, pipes, tools, and related equipment. The engine has been on display at the National Museum of American History since 1978.”

Greg Hayden

GWB
12th November 2010, 07:35
Heres a photo of a working model in the Maritime Museum in Brisbane
may be of some help.
Friend of mine has built a working model from scratch starting with the patterns, getting parts cast and machining the lot his only problem know is the boiler as it has to meet OHS once he sorts that out it is going in his boat.

GWB
12th November 2010, 07:38
THe file was to big so will try again

johnblack5
12th November 2010, 11:01
These photographs are really good and show a lot of detail.
Many thanks for you help.

John

johnblack5
12th November 2010, 11:02
Many thanks Greg, good photo.

John

johnblack5
12th November 2010, 11:05
Heres a photo of a working model in the Maritime Museum in Brisbane
may be of some help.
Friend of mine has built a working model from scratch starting with the patterns, getting parts cast and machining the lot his only problem know is the boiler as it has to meet OHS once he sorts that out it is going in his boat.

That is a very nice model. Is your friend building a similar one, or, just one that will power his boat. Castings for models such as the one in your photo are very hard to find.
Many thanks

John

PAULD
12th November 2010, 12:53
For thoose intersted in steam
Sheffield holds the largest remaining steamable engine in the UK - the ex River Don Steelworks 12,000 horsepower inverted vertical three cylinder armour plate rolling mill engine which along with its second motion shaft has be re erected at the Kelham Island Museum. Built by Davy Brothers in 1905 this monster of an engine is turned over by steam regularly, its three 40" bore by 48" stroke cylinders fitted with piston valves and hydraulically operated Joy valve gear, ran at 120 rpm and could reverse in under two seconds. It stands 30' high by 40' long and weighs in at around 420 tons, the crankshaft is 21" in diameter. If you only ever see one steam engine moving in your life this should probably be the one ! - phone 0114 272 2106

check this web page http://oldenginehouse.users.btopenworld.com/othermuseums.htm
Well worth a visit if you can be there when its running

Duncan112
12th November 2010, 13:07
Can't find my copy at present but the earlier editions of Fox & Mc Brirnie's "Marine Steam Engines and Turbines" had a lot of info and drawings of triple expansion engines. The later editions cut it down substantially. 1955 copy on abe books:

http://www.abebooks.co.uk/servlet/SearchResults?bt.x=27&bt.y=6&sts=t&tn=marine+steam+engines+and+turbines

Southern also did a few books - again be careful which edition you get.

johnblack5
12th November 2010, 13:53
Can't find my copy at present but the earlier editions of Fox & Mc Brirnie's "Marine Steam Engines and Turbines" had a lot of info and drawings of triple expansion engines. The later editions cut it down substantially. 1955 copy on abe books:

http://www.abebooks.co.uk/servlet/SearchResults?bt.x=27&bt.y=6&sts=t&tn=marine+steam+engines+and+turbines

Southern also did a few books - again be careful which edition you get.

I have purchased Macgibbons MOT Orals and the 17th Edition of Sotherns. Sothers refer to a book "Marine Engine Design by Prof M Bragg, a copy of that is on its way to me.
The Life Magazine photo's from "Surfaceblow" are really good. Its a case of getting all the bits of info together.
I will look into the book you mention.

Many thanks


John

johnblack5
12th November 2010, 14:35
For thoose intersted in steam
Sheffield holds the largest remaining steamable engine in the UK - the ex River Don Steelworks 12,000 horsepower inverted vertical three cylinder armour plate rolling mill engine which along with its second motion shaft has be re erected at the Kelham Island Museum. Built by Davy Brothers in 1905 this monster of an engine is turned over by steam regularly, its three 40" bore by 48" stroke cylinders fitted with piston valves and hydraulically operated Joy valve gear, ran at 120 rpm and could reverse in under two seconds. It stands 30' high by 40' long and weighs in at around 420 tons, the crankshaft is 21" in diameter. If you only ever see one steam engine moving in your life this should probably be the one ! - phone 0114 272 2106

check this web page http://oldenginehouse.users.btopenworld.com/othermuseums.htm
Well worth a visit if you can be there when its running

When next I travel to the cold North I will call in and have a look. Lots of nice engines on this web site.

Many thanks John

chadburn
12th November 2010, 16:09
Ah, the joy's of the Junker's ring.

Billieboy
12th November 2010, 16:36
Ah, the joy's of the Junker's ring.

And all those half inch BSW nuts holding it down!

johnblack5
12th November 2010, 20:33
Can't find my copy at present but the earlier editions of Fox & Mc Brirnie's "Marine Steam Engines and Turbines" had a lot of info and drawings of triple expansion engines. The later editions cut it down substantially. 1955 copy on abe books:

http://www.abebooks.co.uk/servlet/SearchResults?bt.x=27&bt.y=6&sts=t&tn=marine+steam+engines+and+turbines

Southern also did a few books - again be careful which edition you get.

I have bought the book you found, it was first published in 1953 so I hope it has lots if TE engine details.
Many thanks for your help.
John

Billieboy
12th November 2010, 20:39
John, one thing that you must never forget, Keep the cylinder oil can on top of the LP cylinder!

johnblack5
19th November 2010, 12:45
Does anyone have any drawings or photographs of Triple Expansion engines engines built in the UK. I plan to build a model of the engines fitted to the Liberty Ships and really need a lot of detail. So much was destroyed when all the yards closed.

Gentlemen

I have found a web site that it out of this world, for me anyway. Photograhs of engines being made, a full set of drawings of a triple expansion engine, lots of other drawings, just look at this site and have cups of coffee every hour as you enjoy yourselves.

http://www.dieselduck.net/historical/01%20diesel%20engine/Doxford/works.htm


John(Wave)(Night)(Wave)

Billieboy
19th November 2010, 13:41
Thanks for the pictures John, I had the great pleasure of standing next to the crankshaft lathe, when attending the Receiver's auction of the Sunderland shop. It was the happiest day of my life, to See the end of the monster factory.

surfaceblow
21st November 2010, 06:15
There are four pages of pictures of the Jeremiah O'Brien engine room plus pictures of other old engines. If you go to the home page you can locate other old time engines including marine engines.

http://www.oldengine.org/members/diesel/Woodland/WoodlandMenu.htm

Joe

Billieboy
21st November 2010, 07:59
There are four pages of pictures of the Jeremiah O'Brien engine room plus pictures of other old engines. If you go to the home page you can locate other old time engines including marine engines.

http://www.oldengine.org/members/diesel/Woodland/WoodlandMenu.htm

Joe

Watching the video, of the Lucky O'Brian, took me back 53 years to when I first saw a BIG triple working at Cardiff docks. The engines had a 72inch LP, there were three of them and they ran at 80+ revs pumping water into the dock to keep the level up at neaps or when the port was very busy. The pump house was on the starboard side of the Queen Alexander dock main sea lock. Shortly after I was stationed at the pumping station we started to scrap one engine in order to convert the pumping system to electric power.

johnblack5
21st November 2010, 17:05
There are four pages of pictures of the Jeremiah O'Brien engine room plus pictures of other old engines. If you go to the home page you can locate other old time engines including marine engines.

http://www.oldengine.org/members/diesel/Woodland/WoodlandMenu.htm

Joe

Hello Joe
The link is broken, I have tried using a short version of the link without any success. The link http://www.ssjeremiahobrien.org/pixs.html
shows some good photos but only of the Obrien.


John

johnblack5
21st November 2010, 17:11
Thanks for the pictures John, I had the great pleasure of standing next to the crankshaft lathe, when attending the Receiver's auction of the Sunderland shop. It was the happiest day of my life, to See the end of the monster factory.

You cannot leave me hanging, why were you so happy ?. Some of those fitters must have been real craftsmen. My father served his time with Yarwoods in Northwich and try as I might I could not touch him with the handtools, with a lathe I could win.

John

surfaceblow
21st November 2010, 19:22
Hello Joe
The link is broken, I have tried using a short version of the link without any success. The link http://www.ssjeremiahobrien.org/pixs.html
shows some good photos but only of the Obrien.


John

John

The web site was down for a couple of hours this morning but it appears to be working at the present time.

Joe

KIWI
22nd November 2010, 05:34
Having sailed on a Norwegian Liberty those photos sure bring back some memories.Our engine room was spotless but the J'OB looks like it is a work of art.Big regret is that the modern cine camera was not available to film them in action & then those of my next ship the Maloja which were very much bigger & really something to see in action.The smell of steam & oil is also never to be forgotten. KIWI

Billieboy
22nd November 2010, 06:33
You cannot leave me hanging, why were you so happy ?. Some of those fitters must have been real craftsmen. My father served his time with Yarwoods in Northwich and try as I might I could not touch him with the handtools, with a lathe I could win.

John

I was so happy because I'd spent 8months 12 days and 17hours on the, "Trelissick", as a first trip J/E. The Main Engine was a four legged Doxford built in 1949, water cooled with steam auxiliaries. The main cooling line burst after 22 hours on passage and the engine never ran for more than 24 hours after that. After running out of fuel and getting towed to Yokohama, we caught fire, eventually discharges and repaired, loaded timber at various west coast Canada ports and proceeded to the Panama canal, off Nicaragua all crank and crosshead bearings ran. Six days of 6 on 6 off nearly killed all of us engineers. I never ever sailed, (on articles), on another Motor ship.

Sorry about the lads who lost their jobs, it was the engine not those that built it! one job I had to do was make inch and a quarter(?), "A" frame bolts, on a belt driven mangle! had to use marmalade on the belts to get a cut on! I had nightmares for nearly two years after paying off this one.

johnblack5
22nd November 2010, 09:40
I was so happy because I'd spent 8months 12 days and 17hours on the, "Trelissick", as a first trip J/E. The Main Engine was a four legged Doxford built in 1949, water cooled with steam auxiliaries. The main cooling line burst after 22 hours on passage and the engine never ran for more than 24 hours after that. After running out of fuel and getting towed to Yokohama, we caught fire, eventually discharges and repaired, loaded timber at various west coast Canada ports and proceeded to the Panama canal, off Nicaragua all crank and crosshead bearings ran. Six days of 6 on 6 off nearly killed all of us engineers. I never ever sailed, (on articles), on another Motor ship.

Sorry about the lads who lost their jobs, it was the engine not those that built it! one job I had to do was make inch and a quarter(?), "A" frame bolts, on a belt driven mangle! had to use marmalade on the belts to get a cut on! I had nightmares for nearly two years after paying off this one.

All is now clear, thanks Joe.

johnblack5
22nd November 2010, 09:42
John

The web site was down for a couple of hours this morning but it appears to be working at the present time.

Joe

It started up again on Sunday, some more good photo's. Have a look at this article, very interesting.



http://www.gla.ac.uk/services/archives/news/dunaskinnews200207/deathontheclyde/

chuckgregg
26th November 2010, 15:09
Hi I served my time at the Wallsend Slipway Engineering Co next door to the North Eastern Marine, whilst I was there the Slipway built the largest Doxford of its day a 6 cylinder 750mm bore center scavenge, and we were all impressed upon to make this special engine so great care was taken on all parts , I seem to remember to liners were sent to Switzerland to be chromed maybe this was just a rumour ? and the 1st time it was fired up it didn't blow the relief valves which was the norm, one of the jobs I worked on was grinding and to scrape the spherical main bearings. I think the engine was installed in the Hopemount a tanker. These were happy days at the Slipway and after working on Doxfords I became I confirmed steam queen and didn't sail on diesels until I needed motor time and this was served on Sulzers and B&W which were clockwork compared to the Doxfords with clean crankcases when doing deflections. Steam Turbines were also built at the Slipway and fitting out ships going trials on the land of NOD [New Outside Dept] was really the bst time and most of the Marine Engine Fitters apps went to sea with a wide variety of companies .

chuckgregg
26th November 2010, 17:42
Anyone else sail on Quadriple Expansion Engines

chuck

johnblack5
27th November 2010, 21:53
Hello Chuck
Have a look at this web site especially the pictures from Sunderland Works, they will take you back a few years.

John

chuckgregg
27th November 2010, 22:27
Hi John its just like I remembered but its mostly machine work there was a hellova lot of fitting to be done after the machining of all the parts and a lot of other trades also involved, coppersmiths ,brassies , welders , electricians , whitemetal workers , blacksmiths , patternmakers , marker offs, and all the office staff , the girls in the tracing office , draftsmen , we had our own train drivers , riggers , boatmen to name but a few . Tradesmen are almost a thing of the past ,years ago I worked as a foreman in Smiths Docks North Shields and at that time there was only 4 apprentices in the whole yard. When I was attending South Shields Marine Colledge ships were three abreast on the quays waiting for drydocking in Smiths and that was only part of the river, used to cross the river from north to south on a steam ferry up & downer but
we could never get permission to go down for a look see. As a 4th in Atlantic Steam I actually sailed on LST's which had twin engine rooms and twin pressurised boiler rooms which were the chinese juniors domain. to see these brilliant engines running built by Canadian Pacific Railroads was quite something. To be able to go from full ahead to full astern WITHOUT CLOSING the steam valve was something I've never forgot you could not see the engine change direction and the only vibration was at the propeller , the Stevinson link gear was designed by a genius and had a magical quality about it. Another recip I was on was Skinner uniflow which had an enclosed crankcase and looked like a diesel but wasn't an American design which I've not been able to find out anything about the ship was originally a asphalt carrier and converted to a drill ship she was also a twin. This site has made my interest's flare up again and shall use the internet and try and find out more about the Skinner Uniflow
regards to all

chadburn
27th November 2010, 23:29
Never worked on a Skinner uniflow but I have worked on a completely enclosed V.T.E. in the distant past. For most of us working on steam long legger's the Stephenson Link motion was a great system especially when working on them, they certainly were a learning curve on Draw filing when working on the Link's themselves. Has anybody ever worked on Joy's VTE Valve gear?

stores
28th November 2010, 01:16
only worked on 2 ships that were triple expansion, fireman on one, greaser on other, best engines of all, silent power, never forget the smell. second one was twin screw, so two 3 leggied jobs, fantastic, can someone explain to me quadruple expansion, i know 4 cylinder, also whats the difference in a compound steam engine, ? and cross compound. i read somewhere they were difficult to reverse, ? ? thanks, STORES.

chuckgregg
28th November 2010, 20:39
only worked on 2 ships that were triple expansion, fireman on one, greaser on other, best engines of all, silent power, never forget the smell. second one was twin screw, so two 3 leggied jobs, fantastic, can someone explain to me quadruple expansion, i know 4 cylinder, also whats the difference in a compound steam engine, ? and cross compound. i read somewhere they were difficult to reverse, ? ? thanks, STORES.
Hi Stores google skinner uniflow steam engine an excellent site explains most of your questions , this engine had poppet valves worked off a cam shaft, the biggest up & downer I ever saw was quick visit aboard a Factory Whaling ship I think it was the Southern ???? and quick note the North Eastern Marine had patent on a reheat system on steam between cylinders cannot recall which
ones though.
rgds Chuck