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1927 Worthington-Simpson triple-expansion steam engine at the the Kempton Steam Museum

An Old Friend – 1,000 Tons Of Steam Powered Pumping Engine

The video below – An Old Friend – is a wonderful story about a 1927 Worthington-Simpson triple-expansion steam engine and the men that care for and run it today. This amazing engine can produce 1008 h.p., has two huge 32-ton flywheels that turn at 10 r.p.m. on a 30-ton crankshaft, it is 62 feet high, and weighs 1,000 tons. The engine is the largest working example of its type in the world today. The plant the engine is housed in has become the home of the Kempton Steam Museum in Hanworth, Middlesex, England.

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  • One of the end connecting rods and the crankshaft.  The wrench on the engine bed is 36-inches long.

Two of these engines ran non-stop with the exception of maintenance, between the startup in 1927 and continued on for fifty-three years until 198o when being taken out of service. On average each of these engines pumped nineteen million gallons of water a day to North London. After you watch the video learn more at the Kempton Steam Museum about the engines and the six Babcock & Wilcox boilers. The top photo is courtesy of Anguskirk and the lower by the Steam Museum. The video was found by Clayton Paddison.

3 responses to “An Old Friend – 1,000 Tons Of Steam Powered Pumping Engine

  1. I fired some Babcock and Wilcox boilers in the Nav and merchant marine.
    The company also built the steam part of the 3mile island nuke plant.
    Their trademark was Hero’s steam engine from ancient greece

  2. A mechanical engineer’s dream. I spent some time at the website, and the content is amazing. Unmentioned is where they accessed nearly 20 million gallons of fresh water a day. I’m no civil engineer, but that sounds like a lot.

    Apparently the pump site is also host to regular car shows, as evidenced in the galley under “events”. They include some vintage photos, including the company parking lot, showing Euro rarities of the era for historic comparison.

    That was a fun internet journey. Thanx!

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