The repair or the great spur gear moved a major step closer to completion today, as this entry in our watermill blog will relate.
The drilling of the reinforcing plates was finished, the plates given a coat of paint and then they were all bolted on.
The picture shows the top plate with round openings for the original strengthening bolts and our smaller showing as bright spots. There are similar plates on the underside of the gear.
Hopefully this repair will last for a few years before we have to get a new great spur gear made. Our visiting expert, Tim Booth, thinks it should last quite well as long as we don't give it any shocks.
The next step in the repair is to fit the sixty four wooden cogs into the sockets around the gear. Each one needs to be hand fitted as the sockets differ slightly one to another.
By close of play Colin, Martyn, Kim and Headley had managed to fit at least eight of the cogs and seemed very happy with the days progress.
Outside the mill, John D and Jonathan worked on two lots of brickwork. John D made a start to building the retaining wall beside the bottom door while Jonathan built a replacement step at the same door. The steps had suffered badly from weathering and we had removed the top step because it was in a dangerous condition. This has now been reinstated after a gap of several months.
Also outside the mill, John N and Finton did a lot of work clearing the area at the foot of the side steps and over the culvert towards the farmyard.
In particular, the fence over the end of the culvert was cleared of ivy and decayed timber. This only left the two end posts, so we will need to re-fence this bit.
As the ground was cleared they spread chippings from the pile we had delivered last week. It does look some much more cared for than the mud used to.
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