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Home Built Load Fan For Antique Steam Equipment
To run steam powered antique farm equipment, you need to have something for the equipment to power. Many steam thresher shows use large load fans.
Roger Wessels, Fairbury, Ill., wanted to start a steam threshing event but he couldn't find a load fan to use. He decided to build one of his own. It turned out to be more of a project than he had expected. Even though he is an experienced "do it yourselfer" who has had a number of inventions featured in FARM SHOW in the past, it took him nine 14-hour days to build the fan.
He used a 5-ft. long 2 1/2-in. solid metal shaft mounted on a pair of pillow block bearings. Fan blades are 2 ft. square, made out of 5/16-in. thick steel plate. One of the trickiest steps was mounting the heavy blades. They had to be carefully centered in order to run smoothly. Heavy strap iron that runs across each pair of blades holds them in place.
A large pulley mounts on one end of the shaft. Wessels also built the pulley from scratch. The fan mounts on skids made from large, heavy-gauge tubing so it can be easily towed.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Roger Wessels, Rt. 1, Box 26, Fairbury, Ill. 61939.

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1997 - Volume #21, Issue #5