It was a day of small steps today, as this watermill blog entry will tell.
The pulley that we had started to move last week came free with only a little persuasion. Great, now for the next one.
The first pulley had been fixed with a set screw but the second one is wedged in place with a tapered key. This has proved to be immovable so far in spite of Headley's efforts with the gas torch to loosen it with heat.
We have soaked it in oil and will let that penetrate for a few days. This is our longest length of line shaft and we want to keep it intact if at all possible.
Finton has dismantled the root shredder to the point that we can move it from its current location. This one of the machines that we want to be able demonstrate being run from the waterwheel via the line shaft, so we will clean all the parts up and re-assemble it in a suitable location. Another small step in the right direction.
Inside the mill Martyn, Colin and Kim began fixing the reinforcement to the great spur gear.
The plates have been cut to clear the original bolts and clamped in place for holes to be drilled through the plates and the timber of the gear.
Each hole to be drilled goes through steel plate then eight inches of wood of varying quality and then the second steel plate. Each hole is placed to miss the sockets for the wooden cogs and has to be carefully drilled.
At the end of the day they fixed nine bolts in place, another small step towards getting the mill working again.
John and Jonathan put the finishing touches to the steps that now reach all the way to the roadway.
Max and Bob scraped out the pea gravel that we had previously laid between the brick steps. This has proved to be unstable on anything less than a dead flat surface.
With the old gravel collected up they set about laying down chippings. These are quite a lot coarser than the previous pebbles and bind together much better. Ten tons were delivered this morning so they had no excuse for skimping and completed the path as Jonathan completed the last brickwork.
Bob also worked on the line shaft, using a cleaning disk in an angle grinder to remove the film of rust. Richard did a bit of work on the shaft as well and generally kept an eye on what was going on.
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