Seeking Model Engine Advice

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JohnPower
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2018 2:01 pm

Seeking Model Engine Advice

Post by JohnPower » Mon Jan 01, 2018 8:41 pm

This is my first post, feel free to let me know if this post is inappropriate. Here's the story: I am seeking information and advice about 2 model engines and drawings that were made several years ago by a distant relative. These models and drawings were acquired in the estate, I am looking for information and also their value should selling them be pursued. My understanding is they were meticulously made over several years by the relative in his retirement. #1 Triple Expansion Engine by O.B Bolton. The Model is about approx 16" tall x 16" wide x 12" deep, included are 10 sheets of blueprints. #2 "Corliss" Stationary Steam Engine, approx 20" long x 12" high x 12" deep included are 5 sheets of blueprints from Coles Power Models, Ventura CA. The models are in excellent condition, light rust on a few parts, everything turns smoothly
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gwrdriver
Posts: 3320
Joined: Mon Jan 06, 2003 10:31 am
Location: Nashville Tennessee

Re: Seeking Model Engine Advice

Post by gwrdriver » Mon Feb 21, 2022 11:27 am

Hi John,
A few comments, based upon what I see . . . .

The first (top) photo appears to be of a Stuart Turner (UK) #9 horizontal, which bears no resemblance to a Coles Corliss. While single-cylinder Stuart Engines are common, the #9, being a larger Stuart engine (but smaller than the Coles Corliss) is a bit less common than the others. I can't question whether you have the Corliss and drawings, but perhaps you've posted the wrong photo.

The Bolton is a challenging engine to build but makes up into an impressive model. For years the Bolton castings were sold by AJReeves Ltd (Birmingham) England (now known as Reeves2000), and probably still are. So far as I know this model differed from similar twins and triples in that all the castings were in "gunmetal", a bronze alloy, which is at the same time easy to machine and difficult to machine, due to the tendency of the metal to snatch drills and cutters and ruin parts. In other models most of the components of an engine of that size were in cast iron.

I won't address valuation, if that's what you are interested in, because values these days are all over the place, and I'm regularly surprised at the high prices paid for relatively poor quality. So to attract a good price, both would need to be disassembled, cleaned, some bare metal given a scrub, and then given a good paint job. In general, except for a little brass here and there (gauges, etc), very little on real engines like these was ever polished. Bare metal was considered to be "bright' and usually had an oil-rubbed or scoured finish.

A search of the internet will turn up plenty of photos of examples of these and similar model engines which have been nicely finished for display or exhibition.
GWRdriver
Nashville TN

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