This section is from "Scientific American Supplement Volumes 275, 286, 288, 299, 303, 312, 315, 324, 344 and 358". Also available from Amazon: Scientific American Reference Book.
Fig. 3 gives the details of the pneumatic connection between the main piston and the hammer, in which packing and packing glands are dispensed with. The hammer, G, is of cast steel, bored out to fit the main piston, F, the latter being also bored out to receive an internal piston, L. A pin, M, passing freely through slots in the main piston, F, connects rigidly the internal piston, L, with the hammer, G. When the main piston is raised by the rocking lever, the air in the space, X, between the main and internal pistons, is compressed, and forms an elastic medium for lifting the hammer; when the main piston is moved down, the air in the space, Y, is compressed in its turn, and the hammer forced down to give the blow. Two holes drilled in the side of the hammer renew the air automatically in the spaces, X and Y, at each blow of the hammer.
Figs. 4 to 6, on the next page, represent the medium size forging hammer, for making forgings in dies, swaging and tilting bars, and plating edged tools, etc.
The hammer weighs 1 cwt., has a stroke variable from 4 in. to 14½ in., and gives 200 blows per minute; the compressed air space between the main piston and the hammer is sufficiently long to admit forgings up to 3 in. thick under the hammer.
To make forgings economically, it is necessary to bring them into the desired form by a few heavy blows, while the material is still in a highly plastic condition, and then to finish them by a succession of lighter blows. The heavy blows should be given at a slower rate than the lighter ones, to allow time for turning the work in the dies or on the anvil, and so to avoid the risk of spoiling it. In forging with the steam hammer the workman requires an assistant, who, with the lever of the valve motion in hand, obeys his directions as to starting and stopping, heavy or light blows, slow or quick blows, etc; the quickest speed attainable depending on the speed of the arm of the assistant. In the movable-fulcrum forging hammer the operations of starting and stopping, and the giving of heavy or light blows, are under the complete control of one foot of the workman, who requires therefore no assistant; and by properly proportioning the diameter of the driving pulley and size of belt to the hammer, the heavy blows are given at a slower rate than the light ones, owing to the greater resistance which they offer to the driving belt.
In this hammer the pneumatic connection, the arrangements for the starting, stopping, and holding up of the hammer, as well as those for communicating the motion of the crank-pin to the hammer by means of a rocking lever and movable fulcrum, are similar to those in the planishing hammer, differing only in the details, which provide double guides and bearings for the principal working parts.
LONGWORTH'S POWER HAMMER WITH MOVABLE FULCRUM.
The movable fulcrum, B, Figs. 4 and 5, consists of two adjustable steel pins, attached to the fulcrum lever, Q, and turned conical where they fit in the socket, D. The fulcrum lever is pivoted on a pin, R, fixed in the framing of the machine, and is connected at its lower extremity to the nut, S, in gear with the regulating screw, T. The to-and-fro movement of the fulcrum lever, Q, by which heavy or light blows are given by the hammer, is placed under the control of the foot of the workman, in the following manner: U is a double-ended forked lever, pivoted in the center, and having one end embracing the starting pedal, P, and the other end the small belt which connects the fast pulley on the driving shaft, A, with the loose pulley, V, or the reversing pulleys, W and X. These are respectivly connected with the bevel wheels, W, and X, gearing into and placed at opposite sides of the bevel wheel, Z, on the regulating screw in connection with the fulcrum lever. When the workman places his foot on the pedal, P, to start the hammer, he finds his foot within the fork of the lever, U; and by slightly turning his foot round on his heel he can readily move the forked lever to right or left, so shifting the small belt on to either of the reversing pulleys, W or X, and causing the regulating screw, T, to revolve in either direction. The fulcrum lever is thus caused to move forward or backward, to give light or heavy blows. By moving the forked lever into mid position, the small belt is shifted into its usual place on the loose pulley, V, and the fulcrum remains at rest. To fix the lightest and heaviest blow required for each kind of work, adjustable stops are provided, and are mounted on a rod, Y, connected to an arm of the forked lever. When the nut of the regulating screw comes in contact with either of the stops, the forked lever is forced into mid position, in spite of the pressure of the foot of the workman, and thus further movement of the fulcrum lever, in the direction which it was taking, is prevented. The movable fulcrum can also be adjusted by hand to any required blow, when the hammer is stopped, by means of a handle in connection with the regulating screw.
In conclusion the author wishes to direct attention to the fact, that in many of our largest manufactories, particularly in the midland counties, foot and hand labor for forging and stamping is still employed to an enormous extent. Hundreds of "Olivers," with hammers up to 60 lb. in weight, are laboriously put in motion by the foot of the workman, at a speed averaging fifty blows per minute; while large numbers of stamps, worked by hand and foot, and weighing up to 120 lb., are also employed. The low first cost of the foot hammers and stamps, combined with the system of piece work, and the desire of manufacturers to keep their methods of working secret, have no doubt much to do with the small amount of progress that has been made; although in a few cases competition, particularly with the United States of America, has forced the manufacturer to throw the Oliver and hand-stamp aside, and to employ steam power hammers and stamps. The writer believes that in connection with forging and stamping processes there is still a wide and profitable field for the ingenuity and capital of engineers, who choose to occupy themselves with this minor, but not the less useful, branch of mechanics.