This reminds me of some sort of jury-rigged post-apocalyptic setup you’d see in Mad Max.

When two boilers of a Newark, Ohio, refinery had to be taken out of service simultaneously for repairs, the company engineer averted an expensive shut-down by using a locomotive to provide emergency steam. The engine, rented from a nearby railroad shop, was run on a siding beside the plant. Piston and cylinder head were removed, permitting the steam to be drawn off for use in the refinery. A temporary smokestack and a traveling-bucket coal loader completed the conversion. For two weeks, the locomotive ran the plant.

  1. Rick Auricchio says: June 25, 20071:47 pm

    It’s actually rather ingenious.

  2. Charlie says: June 25, 20072:05 pm

    There is actually another one like this I like even more. I can’t remember if I’ve posted it yet or not. It basically was a diesel/electric train engine that you could park on a siding and use as a portable power plant. It seemed pretty smart to me; having a power plant you could move to wherever you needed one.

  3. Blurgle says: June 25, 20073:46 pm

    It is ingenious. It probably saved 100 men or more from being laid off without pay for two weeks, and may have helped keep a company afloat (1933!). Excellent use of items at hand.

  4. mrchurchill109 says: June 26, 20078:50 am

    Things like this are still done today – though not in quite as amusing a fashion. Nowdays, when process steam or heating or whatever is needed and a boiler had to be shut down, “package” boilers can be delivered on a low-loader trailer and just parked.

    All that’s needed after that is a source of power (though some even come with Diesel generators) and to plumb the boiler output into the plant as needed.

    It works, but it doesn’t beat the sheer panache of a locomotive!

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