Hornsby Stationary Engine - helped power shearing
This 100-year-old plus stationary oil engine was commonplace equipment for powering shearing plants in woolsheds around New Zealand and overseas at the turn of the last century onwards. This model on loan at the Coach House Museum, has a fair bit of local history.
This 3 1/2hp single cylinder engine (number 2471), was made by Richard Hornsby and Sons Limited, in Grantham, Lincolnshire in England around 1900. Originally it was mounted on a concrete block at Hamish Hogg’s woolshed at Mingaroa Road Halcombe to power the shearing plant in a flat belt overhead shafting system, common to shearing plants of its era.
It was set on a sledge base by Graham de Ridder before it was displayed at Brian James’ private museum, in James Line, Halcombe. It was loaned to the Coach House in 2002 for display by the family of the late Hamish Hogg.
Hornsby-designed engines have been used around the world including to provide power for the Statue of Liberty, and by Marconi to power his early wireless telegraphy experiments.
Hornsby also developed and patented the first fully tracker crawler. They sold the patent to Holt, in California, which eventually became ‘Caterpillar’.