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Note: This is a sub-section of 1888 Institution of Mechanical Engineers
Visits to Works (Excursions) in Ireland
DESCRIPTION OF THE PORT OF DUBLIN by Mr. JOHN PURSER GRIFFITH, PRESIDENT OF THE INSTITUTION OF CIVIL ENGINEERS OF IRELAND, ASSISTANT ENGINEER OF THE DUBLIN PORT AND DOCKS BOARD.
Port of Dublin
Dublin is situated at the head of a bay 6 miles deep and 51 miles wide, Fig. 1, Plate 74. Large quantities of sand brought in by the sea have accumulated in the bay, forming extensive strands, which are laid dry at low water for a distance of about 2!, miles seaward. The history of Dublin as a port dates back to the year 1707, when the conservancy of the port was vested in the Corporation of the City of Dublin by the Irish Parliament. At that date the combined waters of the Liffey and Dodder flowed across the sands at low water, dividing them into the North Bull and South Bull. From its exposed position the channel thus formed was subject to constant alteration in depth and direction; and this being the only channel by which vessels could reach the city, the early attempts to improve the harbour naturally took the direction of providing a permanent and deep approach to the port. With this view the Great South Wall was constructed during the eighteenth century to shelter the channel from southerly winds, and also to prevent the encroachment of sand. When completed, it accomplished to a great extent the object aimed at by its designers. Portions of the channel up to the city however were still very shallow; and attention was also drawn to a shoal beyond the extremity of the new wall, known as Dublin Bar.
This bank stretched from the north side of the bay across the entrance to the harbour in the form of a hook. The deepest water for vessels was round the end of this book; but across the bank, in a direct line out to sea, there was a depth of only from 5 to 6 feet at low water of spring tides.
At the beginning of the present century many eminent engineers and naval officers were consulted respecting further improvements. Captain Bligh recommended a wall along the north side of the channel; Sir Thomas Hyde Page proposed a similar wall, and the formation of an island on the bar; while a proposal to construct an embankment or wall extending from the north shore towards Poolbeg emanated from the corporation for preserving and improving the port of Dublin, better known as the Ballast Board, to whom the conservancy of the port had been transferred in 1786. Mr. Rennie, at that time considered the highest authority on the improvement of harbours, prepared an elaborate scheme, but he predicted little likelihood of much improvement on the bar. He expected an increased depth of 3 feet of water as the result of an estimated expenditure exceeding £655,000. To provide a better approach, he considered it essential to construct a ship canal from some point on the adjacent coast, where deep water might be obtained, and finally recommended this entrance to be made close to the present site of Kingstown Harbour; his estimate for this work was £489,734.
From 1802 to 1819 the question [of the improvement of the bar appears to have been in abeyance. Probably Mr. Rennie's scheme, from the large expenditure it would have involved and the smallness of the results anticipated, tended to deter the government from advancing the necessary funds for any particular scheme.
About 1819 the Ballast Board found themselves in a position to carry out their own project of a wall or embankment from the Clontarf shore. Its object was to protect the harbour on the north side from the encroachment of sand, to shelter it from northerly and easterly winds, and to direct the tidal and river waters in a fixed channel across the bar. Before beginning this work however an accurate survey of the river and bar was made by Mr. Francis Giles.
Under the joint direction of Mr. Giles and Mr. Halpin the engineer of the Ballast Board, the rubble embankment, now known as the Great North Wall, was constructed, extending about 9,000 feet from the Clontarf shore, its southern end being about 1,000 feet north of Poolbeg Lighthouse. Over 5,500 feet of this wall rose above high-water, the remainder being below that level; and the extreme 2,000 feet reached on the average to half-tide only. During the first half of the ebb, the tidal and river waters running out of the harbour fie, partly over the submerged wall, and partly through the harbour, entrance between the termination of the wall and Poolbeg Lighthouse' As soon however as the tide falls below the level of the wall, water contained within the two great piers of the port passes through the contracted entrance at Poolbeg. The velocity of the stream is thus greatly increased; and a channel has been formed across the bar with 16 feet at low water of spring tides, where in 1819 there was a depth of only 6 feet. As the improvement of the bar is due to the water discharged from the harbour during the second half of the ebb, any addition to the tidal capacity of the harbour below that level may be expected to produce a corresponding increase in the depth on the bar. Such an increase in the tidal capacity of the harbour is actually taking place by the lowering of the North Strand, the result of dredging and the wasting away of the bank.
A consideration of the difficulties overcome in the improvement of the approach to the port of Dublin naturally leads to the enquiry, what are the dangers which beset the maintenance of the deep-water channel across the bar. These may be briefly summarised as reclamation inside and outside the harbour. Reclamation inside would reduce the tidal capacity on which the scour across the bar depends; while reclamation outside would result in the reduction of the area upon which sand entering the bay is at present deposited, and would tend to drive the low-water mark further out to sea, and greatly endanger the channel across the bar.
Improvements in the River Channel.— Figs. 2 and 3, Plate 75. The great works which proved so efficacious in increasing the depth of the water on Dublin bar produced no appreciable improvements in the river channel. From the city to within 1,000 feet of Poolbeg lighthouse all improvements in the channel are the result of dredging. Steam dredging was first introduced in 1814; but up to 1860 the total average tonnage raised did not exceed 150,000 tons a year. The introduction of modern dredgers and large hopper-barges gave a great impetus to dredging operations, and since 1865 upwards of 15,000,000 tons have been raised. The depth of the river channel has been increased from a maximum of 10 feet to 14 feet at low water between Poolbeg and the entrance to the Alexandra Basin; while from the Alexandra Basin to the Custom House the depth has been increased from an average of 5 feet to depths varying from 9 to 24 feet at low water. The site of the Alexandra Basin, which was chiefly tidal strand, has been dredged to a depth of 24 feet at low water over an area of 40 acres.
Most of the dredging has been carried on in connection with the deep-water quay walls of the Alexandra Basin and the North and South Quays. There are still portions of the river channel between Poolbeg and the Pigeon House Harbour where there is a less depth of water than on the bar. The removal of these shoals has unfortunately been delayed by the reduction of dredging operations, necessitated by the diminished revenue of the last few years.
The dredging plant of the port consists of three steam dredgers, three strain hoppers, five towed hoppers, twelve dredge floats, one tug, and three crane floats. At present however only one steam dredger, three towed hoppers, the tug, and six dredge floats are in commission. (See pages 363-373.)
Dublin Quays —The quay walls along the river Liffey were originally built at very shallow depths; and in 1865, when the Institution of Mechanical Engineers last visited Dublin, the foreshore in front of most of these walls was exposed at low water for many feet outside their base, and vessels lay aground during the greater portion of each tide. To meet the demand for deeper water, timber jetties had been constructed in front of some portions of the old walls, enabling coasting steamers to float at half-tide. The only places in which a vessel drawing 17 feet could he afloat at all states of tide was in a hole dredged at the east end of the North Wall, known as "Halpin's Pond," about 1)- acres in area; and also at Sir John Rogerson's Quay, alongside a floating stage, where a trench, 250 feet long and 70 feet wide, had been formed.
The following extracts from the harbour master's journal for 1865 and 1866 graphically describe the delay and expense incurred by the want of deep-water berthage at that period. "Ship Vistula, of Boston, 1,188 tons register, drawing 22 feet, with a cargo of guano from Peru, bound to Dublin, arrived at Kingstown on the 7th July 1865, where she remained, discharging her cargo into lighters, until the 27th, when she was lightened to 17 feet. She then came to Halpin's Pond, where she had to discharge the remainder of her cargo into lighters, which was not completed until the 28th August." "The ship Tribune, of St. John's, N.B., 1,122 tons register, with a cargo of 1,700 tons guano, drawing 22 feet 6 inches, bound to Dublin, arrived at Kingstown on 15th July 1866; detained at Kingstown till 5th August, to lighten to 17 feet, when she came to Halpin's Pond, where, after a delay of thirty days more, she finished her discharge, all by lighters."
Since 1865 timber jetties, 3,516 feet in length, have been constructed outside somo of the old quay walls on both sides of the river, so as to allow the berths to be deepened to depths of from 5 to 8 feet at low water. For greater depths these temporary structures were unfitted; and in 1864 the first step was made towards the construction of masonry deep-water quay walls. In 1870 the deepening of the South Quay walls was begun; and since that year 4,047 lineal feet of masonry walls have been built at that side of the river, affording berthage of 22 feet depth at low water for the greater portion of this length. On the North Quay 2,317 feet of masonry walls have been built, affording berthage of 16 feet depth at low water, which is mostly used by cross-channel steamers.
These new walls, which replace old quays, were constructed inside cofferdams, the excavations being carried down till a firm foundation was reached, in some cases at depths of 28 to 32 feet under low water.* The quay walls in Dublin which have attracted most attention amongst engineers are those connected with the construction of the Alexandra Basin and the North Quay extension. They do not replace old walls, but are extensions to the quayage of the port, intended to provide berthage for the largest ocean-going vessels. Alongside these quays the "Great Eastern" was moored throughout the winter of 1886-87.
The North Quay extension quays facing the river afford berthage of 22 feet depth at low water, while the berths along the quays inside the Alexandra Basin have depths of 24 to 26 feet at low water. These walls were constructed up to ordinary low- water level with gigantic blocks of masonry, each block weighing 350 tons, and over the blocks the upper portion of the walls was built by tidal work. The blocks were built on a wharf, and when sufficiently hardened were lifted and conveyed to their destination in the quay wall by a floating slicers.
The foundation for the blocks was first excavated by a steam dredger to within 2 feet of the finished level; and the remainder of the excavation was taken out by men working in a large diving-bell, 20 feet square and 6.5 feet high. Access was obtained to this chamber by a wrought-iron shaft and air-lock, without lifting the bell. One of the most important features of this mode of construction is the absence of cofferdams, staging, and pumping; and it has proved exceptionally economical, the quay walls having been built for about £40 per lineal foot, inclusive of the cost of all special plant. The whole of the machinery and appliances used in this great work were designed by Mr. Bindon B. Stoney, the Chief Engineer of the Dublin Port and Docks Board.
The Alexandra Basin is still unfinished; but additional quayage can be rapidly added, when funds are available and further accommodation is needed. The total length of walls built with 350-ton blocks is now 4,911 feet.
Lights, Fog-Signals, Beacons, and Buoys. —The construction of deep-water quays and the improvement of the channel were followed by an increase in the number of passenger steamers entering and leaving the port at fixed hours; and, as this class of traffic developed, the need of improved lights and fog-signals was felt. Previous to 1880 there were but three lighthouses in the river: Poolbeg at the end of the Great South Wall; the Perch light on the north side of the channel, nearly opposite the Pigeon House Harbour; and the North Wall light. These were all fixed white lights. The only fog_ signals were two small bells at Poolbeg lighthouse. There are now five lighthouses; the old lights have been improved, and fog-signals have been placed at each station.
Poolbeg Lighthouse. Figs. 3 and 4, Plates 75 and 76, is the oldest lighthouse in the port, having been built in the middle of the last century. In 1880 the old silvered reflectors were replaced by a third-order condensing dioptric apparatus, from which a fixed white light is exhibited. As the light is visible through only a limited arc, advantage is taken to intensify it seaward by condensing prisms and dioptric reflectors. The fog bells have been replaced by is powerful siren sounded by compressed air. The motive power is an Otto gas engine, and the gas is manufactured on the premises. The whole apparatus, including siren, compressor, engine, gas tank, and retorts, is in duplicate. The siren gives two blasts in quick succession every forty seconds in the following order: the first blast is a high note of two seconds' duration, then a silent interval of one second, followed by a low note of two seconds' duration, and a silent interval of thirty-live seconds. As a supply of gas is always ready, the signal can be sounded within two minutes after a fog is noticed. The importance of being able to start fog-signals quickly at the entrance to a port cannot be overrated. The base of Poolbeg lighthouse is protected on the east and south-east by a breakwater of concrete blocks, each weighing 140 tons; these were carried down and laid in place by the large floating slicers.
The North Bull Lighthouse, Figs. 3 and 5, Plates 75 and 76, is a wrought-iron tourer on a masonry base founded on the submerged end of the Great North Wall. The louver portion of the masonry consists of two concrete blocks, each weighing 330 tons. These were built on the block wharf in the Alexandra Basin, and carried down and deposited by the floating sheers. The light exhibited is an occulting white light, bright for ten seconds and eclipsed for four seconds. The optical apparatus consists of a fourth-order dioptric fixed-light apparatus of 360°, with four revolving lenticular screens, which are designed so as to produce the occultations, and at the same time to transfer the intercepted rays to the bright arcs, and thereby intensify the light. In fog a bell weighing 17 cwts. is sounded four times in quick succession every thirty seconds, the hammers being worked by machinery.
The Beacon Lighthouse, Fig. 3, Plate 75, is on the north side of the channel, about 11 miles inside the entrance of the harbour. It is a brick tower on a concrete base. The light is a fourth-order occulting white light, flashing once every four seconds, the occultation being produced by a cylindrical screen raised and lowered by clockwork. The optical apparatus condenses the light of 270° in azimuth into an arc of 15' to seaward, and the remaining 90' into an are of 35° up channel. Its great brilliancy to seaward adds to its value as a leading light, in conjunction with Poolbeg and the North Boll, for vessels snaking for the port. A bell is sounded in fog three times in quick succession every twenty seconds.
The Eastern Breakwater Lighthouse, Fig. 2, Plate 75, is a temporary wooden square tower on the new pier head, from which a small fixed white light is exhibited; and a bell is sounded in fog twice in quick succession every fifteen seconds.
The North Wall Lighthouse, Figs. 2 and 6, Plates 75 and 77, is also a temporary wooden structure at the end of the North Quay extension. The light is a fixed white light, and the optical apparatus a condensing light of the fifth order. A bell is sounded in fog once every ten seconds.
The dioptric apparatus at Poolbeg and the North Wall lights were manufactured by Messrs. Chance Brothers of Birmingham, and those of the North Bull and the Beacon light by Messrs. Barbier and Fenestre of Paris. Messrs. Edmundson and Co. of Dublin erected the gas works, engines, and one siren, at Poolbeg; the duplicate siren, which is on Professor Holmes' plan, was supplied by the Pulsometer Engineering Co. All the fog-bells and their machinery were manufactured by Messrs. Gillett and Co. of Croydon.
The lights and fog-signals of Dublin river compare favourably with those of any other port. In addition to the lighthouses, the north side of the river channel is defined by two concrete towers T and three wooden perches P, Fig. 3, Plate 75, and the south side by iron buoys B painted red.
Graving Dock and Slips. —The port is provided with one large graving clock, two slips, and a gridiron. The dock is 408 feet is length on floor, including the mitre sill; 70 feet in width of entrance; and has a depth on its sill of 18 feet 3 inches at high water of spring tides. Its entrance is closed by a pair of wrought-iron cellular gates, fitted with Mallet's heel and meeting posts. The cast-iron rollers, upon which the gates rolled originally, have been given up; and the upper hinges are now anchored back to the masonry.
Sheds have been provided at various berths allotted to the principal cross-channel steam-packet companies; and tramways have been laid connecting some of these berths with the railways on the North Wall.
Bridges. —In addition to the works directly connected with the harbour, the Port and Docks Board have lowered and widened Essex Bridge,t now called Grattan Bridge; Carlisle Bridge has been replaced by O'Connell Bridge, Fig. 2, Plate 75, which is the full widths of Sackville Street; and a new swivel bridge, known as Butt Bridge, has been built near the Custom House. These works have been paid for out of public rates under the authority of special acts of parliament, and not out of port funds.
Summary of Works.—The following is a summary of the principal works executed in Dublin Harbour since 1865:—
[See table of page 393]
Port and Docks Board. —The Port of Dublin is under the control of the Port and Docks Board, the successors of the corporation for preserving and improving the port of Dublin. The Board is constituted under the Dublin Port Act of 1867, and consists of 25 members .—the Lord Mayor and three citizens of Dublin appointed by the municipal corporation; seven members elected by the trailers and manufacturers; seven members elected by the shipowners; and seven members nominated by the Commissioners of Irish Lights. The principal powers of the Board are defined by the Dublin Port and Docks Acts of 1869 and 1879.
Income. —The income of the port is chiefly derived from dues on shipping and charges on timber, bricks, and marble. In 1887 the former amounted to £49,755, the latter to £1,500. The rates are as follows:— on oversea vessels, 101d. per registered ton; on coasting vessels, 615d. per registered ton; on timber, bricks, and blocks of marble, 51d. per ton. On the security of the income derived from these rates Parliament has sanctioned borrowing powers for the purposes of the docks and port to the extent of £580,000, and for tramways £25,000.
Tonnage and Revenue. —The following table shows the annual registered tonnage entering the port from 1865 to 1887, and the revenue derived from tonnage rates and dues on timber, bricks, and blocks of marble:—
[See table on page 394]
It will be noticed that the income of the port reached its maximum in 1878. Since that year there has been an almost continuous decline in tonnage and revenue. Although the tonnage is reduced, there is little doubt that the carrying capacity of the vessels entering the port has not materially diminished, but that the reduction is chiefly due to the construction placed on the law of measurement in 1879 by the High Court of Justice.
The Royal Commission on tonnage in their report dated August 1881 say, "We are satisfied that such a construction of the acts is due only to defects in expression, and that it is inconsistent with the principle and intention of the law, as well as with justice and convenience." As Dublin is so largely dependent for its revenue on tonnage rates, the result of this interpretation has been specially injurious to this port, and the loss of revenue has delayed many necessary improvements. The London and North Western Railway Co.'s screw steamer "Anglesey," recently built, illustrates what shipbuilding ingenuity can now do with the view of reducing the registered tonnage of large vessels. This vessel has a gross tonnage of over 800 tons; she is more than 300 feet long, with a beam of 33 feet, and yet registers only 45 tons.
At the end of 1887 there was due £432,500 on mortgage bonds, and £73,476 on Ballast Board debentures, leaking a total debt of £505,976. If a comparison be made between Dublin and other large ports, it will be found that its income and debt are strikingly small. Since the formation of the Port and Docks Board a sum of £752,478 has been expended on improvements of the harbour, over and above ordinary maintenance, the difference between this sum and the amount borrowed on mortgage bonds having been defrayed by the surplus revenue of the port.
GREAT SOUTHERN AND WESTERN RAILWAY LOCOMOTIVE CARRIAGE AND WAGON WORKS, INCHICORE.
The Works at Inchicore are situated about 11 miles west from Kingsbridge, the terminal station in Dublin of the Great Southern and Western Railway, and have been in operation since the early part of 1846, previous to the line being opened for traffic on 4th August of that year. They have since been steadily increasing in size, until they now cover an area of fifty-two acres, upon which stand about eight acres of shop buildings.
In 1847 the number of men employed was 250; there are now between 1,200 and 1,300. All the rolling stock has for a considerable time been entirely constructed and repaired at these works; and in addition the various articles, such as lamps, barrows &c., required for traffic and other purposes of the railway, are made and kept in repair. The rolling stock consists of 176 engines and tenders, 525 passenger vehicles, and 3,521 wagons.
In Plate 78 is shown a general plan-of the-works; and the several shops are as follows, taking them in the order in which they come in going round the works from the eastern end.
In the Paint shop all carriages, engines, and tenders are painted, a small gas-engine being used for grinding colours. Connected with this is the Trimming department where the carriages are upholstered.
The Foundry supplies all the iron and brass castings required in the shops, as well as castings for signal and other work for the Permanent Way department. Locomotive cylinders are cast double, and such things as axle-boxes, buffer-sockets, slide-valves, &c., are machine-moulded from standard patterns.
The Locomotive Smithy is 282 feet long and 50 feet wide, and contains thirty-seven fires. As much of the work as possible is done by stamping and welding under the steam-hammer. A large number of standard dies and tools are used for this purpose, the construction and successful use of which are due to the ingenuity of Mr. Owens, the foreman smith. There are three small steam-hammers in the smithy, which is lighted in the winter time by two steam lucigens; no gas is used. Adjoining is the Forge, containing two Siemens gas furnaces and a 50-cwt. hammer; there are also a rolling mill and machinery for net and bolt making, spring tester, &c.
In the Boiler shop steel is used for the manufacture of locomotive boilers, and hydraulic riveting is employed as far as possible. Amongst the ordinary boiler-shop tools, there is a multiple drilling machine working six drills, and also a plate-edge planing machine with a horizontal table for doing circular work.
The Sawmill and Joinery contain the usual wood-working machinery. All the scantling required for wagons and carriages is cut here, together with the timber required for bridges, signals, and station works. The sleepers for the permanent way are cut, grooved, and creosoted.
At the Gas Works is made all the gas used in the shops and adjoining houses, and also that required for Kingsbridge terminus. The exhauster is driven by a gas engine. Coal required for the locomotives is brought by ship to the North Wall, where it is loaded into wagons by the company's hydraulic cranes, and then run to the coal gantry at Inchicore, where it is dropped. The wagons used for this are of iron with drop-bottoms, and carry 10 tons.
In the Carriage and Wagon shop all carriages and wagons are built and repaired. The hydraulic lifting arrangement for carriages. is worth notice. Carriage wheels are made on Mansell's pattern, and are all accurately balanced by being run on a pair of springs before they are put into use.
The Smiths' shop adjoining the carriage and wagon shop is 180- feet long by 43 feet wide, and contains twenty-three fires and three- small steam-hammers. The system of stamping and welding in dies is carried out as far as possible, such things as wagon hinges being finished direct from the hammer, and requiring no machining in the jaws.
There are two Erecting shops, the western one 326 feet long and 50 feet wide with nineteen pits; the eastern 286 feet long and 50 feet wide with sixteen pits. The shops are provided with rope-driven gantries, and are divided by a traverser serving all roads in both shops; the traverser is driven by wire rope. On the eastern side of the newest portion of the erecting shop, built in 1883, are the Coppersmiths' shop and Testing room; at right angles to the erecting shops and at their northern end is the Machine and Fitting shop, about 324 feet long by 50 feet wide. All the stock is built to templates and standard sizes, and great care is taken to have all parts interchangeable.
The Running Shed has eight pits and accommodates forty-eight engines.
Adjoining the works are some 142 cottages occupied by the company's workmen. A dining hall has been provided for the use of those who live at a distance; there are also reading room, billiard room, library, science class-rooms, and dispensary.
The whole of the works are under the control of Mr. H. A. Ivatt, Locomotive Engineer to the company.
JOHN'S LANE DISTILLERY.
John Power and Son
This distillery, belonging to Messrs. John Power and Son, is one of the old Dublin distilleries celebrated for the manufacture of "Dublin pot still whiskey," and was established in 1791. The whole has practically been rebuilt and refitted during the past ten years. It covers about eight acres, and reaches from Thomas Street to the quays on the south side of the Liffey.
The annual output is about 900,000 gallons; there are from 250 to 300 hands employed, and the daily consumption of coal is from 50 to 60 tons. There are five engines, two of which are McNaught compound beam-engines, one of 400 and the other of about 250 effective H.P., both made by Messrs. Turnbull Grant and Jack of Glasgow.
A hydraulic hoist by Messrs. Ross and Walpole of Dublin is worked by the hot-water overflow from the worm tubs; the ram is 22 inches diameter and 29 feet long. The corn screens and mills are of the most approved pattern; and all the elevators are constructed of cast-iron plates so as not to carry or spread fire, and they can be easily opened at any place.
The corn stores consist of five floors, and contain usually 30,000 to 40,000 barrels of grain in the working season, which is from September till June. The mash tuns are 33 feet diameter, and 7; feet deep, and are capable of mashing at each brewing over 500 barrels. The stills are all pot stills, of which there are six, capable of holding from 15,000 to 25,000 gallons each.
There are seventeen distillery bonded warehouses, and two outlying warehouses, one under the market building in George Street, and the other under Westland Row railway station; they are capable of holding in all up to 40,000 casks, having a total capacity of 1,113,000 cubic feet. The stables are built of enamelled brick throughout, and furnished with Musgrave's fittings. The distillery being built on the side of a hill has the advantage of natural gravitation for the movement of the material in process of manufacture.
ST. JAMES'S GATE BREWERY.
Guinness and Co
This brewery, now the largest in the world, belonging to Messrs. Arthur Guinness Son and Co., was established in 1759, by the purchase of an existing plant from Mr. Rainsford, by Mr. Guinness, an ancestor of Sir Edward Guinness, Bart., the present chairman of the company. As shown in the general plan, Plate 51, it covers about thirty-five acres, exclusive of workmen's dwellings and grounds, and is situated on two levels: on the higher are built the brewhouses, fermenting rooms, and vat houses, the malt and hop stores, stables, and offices; and on the lower are situated the malt-house, the cooperage, and the cask washing and filling sheds, as well as those for delivery of porter and waste products.
Only black beer or Dublin stout is brewed, generally in three qualities, — porter, stout, and export stout made especially for consumption abroad. In the manufacture of these the three ingredients used are water, malt, and hops. The first is obtained from County Kildare, and was the city supply until modern requirements demanded a softer water and larger supply and higher pressure; this is supplemented by the present city supply from the Vartry in County Wicklow. The malt is all made from barley, that grown in Ireland being preferred. There is a malt-house within the brewery limits, but its production of malt is only a small contribution to the whole consumption. The hops are all imported; those grown in Kent have the preference.
There are two breweries: one has been added to from time to time, and is consequently rather irregular in plan; in the other, built in 1877-8 and nearly doubled in 1886, the machinery and plant required in brewing, from the receipt of the malt until the worts are cooled for fermentation, can be seen to best advantage. The malt is received, weighed, ground, and delivered into hoppers preparatory to mashing by machinery. There are in the brewery eight mash tuns, with outside mashing machines, designed in such a manner that four different brewings can be made at the same time. There are four coppers, in which the boiling is done under a pressure of about 1.5-lb. per square inch. At the back of this building are machines recently erected for drying the grains in vacua; the low temperature at which they are thus dried is considered an advantage as adding to the value of this waste product as food for cattle.
A bridge over the yard and running shed leads into the cooling and fermenting houses and thence to some of the cleansing vessels. The greater part of the cooling is done by vertical refrigerators; and the water cooling the hot worts is itself heated and passes back for brewing. As brewing is now carried on in summer much more extensively than in former years, freezing machines have become desirable; the cooling plant, capable of producing from 60 to 70 tons of ice per day, is arranged at the end of the fermenting house; it is used only to cool brine, which is the medium for conveying the cold wherever required. The vats for the storage of the beer cover a considerable area, and are themselves very large examples of cooper's work; some are 26 feet diameter and 2G feet deep.
There is stabling for 150 horses. The last addition made to the brewery is a large malt store, scarcely yet completed in all parts. The malt is stored in octagonal and square bins, 68; feet deep; when completed the store will be able to receive 2,000 quarters per day, and will store 120,000 quarters. There are also printing offices, and joiners', mechanics', and plumbers' shops on this level.
A short ride by the narrow-gauge railway down through the spiral tunnel (page 329), passing the malt-house, and then down the zigzag, leads to the cooperage and other departments situated on the lower level. All the casks required are made by hand on the premises; and the washing appliances are capable of washing eight thousand casks in a working day of ten hours. The filling of casks is effected by Smith's rockers. The proximity of the lower premises to the railway and the river Liffey offers great facilities for the despatch of such heavy products as porter and grains; and advantage has been taken also of the very large supply of water suitable for refrigerating, which is pumped from a well sunk some 40 feet into the gravel, by engines placed 16 feet below the ground level.
OPTICAL AND MECHANICAL WORKS.
These works, belonging to Sir Howard Grubb, were built about the year 1874, adjacent to the site of the former temporary works erected for the construction of the great Melbourne reflector in 1865. The principal building forms a square of about 70 feet, surrounding a twelve-sided ball of about 42 feet diameter, which was originally constructed for the erection of the Vienna 27-inch refractor, and has since been used as an erecting shop for many instruments of smaller size. Now however a portion of the hall is cut off to form a new polishing room for the 28-inch Greenwich refractor.
In this establishment is conducted every process connected with the manufacture of both the mechanical and optical portions of all kinds of astronomical instruments, except the founding of the metal work and the preparation of the rough discs of glass for the optical portions. The heavier work of turners and fitters is carried on in the lower part of the building; and the light optical and mechanical work in rooms in the upper storey, reached by a gallery round the central hall. The model-makers' workshop, smithy, and room for dividing engines, &c., form separate buildings.
These workshops employ from 35 to 40 hands; and small as they are, they have furnished important instruments to most of the leading observatories in all parts of the world. At the present time the following instruments are either in process of construction or about to be put in hand:-28-inch refractor for the royal observatory, Greenwich; 8-inch refractor for Venezuela; 36-inch silver and glass mirror for Mr. Crossley's observatory, Halifax; 13-inch standard photographic telescope for the national observatory, Mexico, and also one for each of the three royal observatories at Greenwich, Cape Town, and Melbourne; 13-inch standard photographic telescope, added to 12-inch equatorial for the Savilian observatory, Oxford, and also one added to 8-inch equatorial for Queen's College observatory, Cork; 13-inch standard photographic objective for the royal observatory, Sydney; 9-inch photographic telescope for Sir Henry Thompson's observatory, Hampton; some smaller equatorials for Peking, &c.; 20-foot observatory roof for the royal observatory, Gottingen; 15-foot observatory roof for Venezuela; and 18-foot observatory roof for the national observatory, Mexico.
It is contemplated to make important additions shortly to the buildings and plant, in order to allow of the employment of a larger number of hands to meet the increasing requirements of the work.
BANK-NOTE PRINTING MACHINE AT THE BANK OF IRELAND.
Bank of Ireland
The three operations of inking and wiping the engraved plates and of taking the impression, including laying and removing the paper, are proceeded with simultaneously. The notes are printed from ten engraved plates upon the ten intermediate sides of a horizontal twenty-sided cylinder, kept at the proper temperature by steam inside. The cylinder is held stationary during eight seconds, and is then turned round through one-tenth of a revolution during the next two seconds. During the stationary period, the undermost engraved plate is inked, the uppermost is printed from, and the plate next to be printed from has the wiping of its surface completed by hand. During the motion of the cylinder, a wiping roller presses against the surface of the previously inked plate, and wipes off the greater portion of the superfluous ink.
There are two attendants, one of whom lays the paper and removes it after being printed, and the other gives the final wiping to the surface of each plate. During each printing the cylinder is locked by a steel tooth inserted into one of ten spaces round its circumference. The cylinder is turned between each printing by means of two levers actuated by cams; one lever inserts a tooth into one of the spaces round the cylinder as the locking tooth is withdrawn, and by the other the box carrying the tooth is moved through the required arc.
The motion of the printing roller is produced by two sets of cams, one of which, acting through a rod and bell-crank and toggle joint, produces the vertical descending movement, and the other traverses the roller horizontally over the engraved plate with a parallel motion; the return movement of the roller is effected by the joint action of the two sets of cams. The bearing surfaces are kept in contact by spiral springs, and the pressure on the roller is about 3 tons.
The inking roller, formed of a number of woollen discs screwed up tightly upon a spindle and finished in a lathe, is worked to and fro without intermission by a rack and sector. The roller is held up to the engraved plate by an adjustable weighted lever, and when the pressure of the weight is removed by a cam the roller drops upon the inking table. The ink is forced up out of a cylinder, through a perforated flat plate of steel forming the inking table, by means of a piston having a screwed piston-rod. The thickened ink is removed from the surface of the inking table once in every thirty-six impressions by a scraper worked by a cam and ratchet.
The designs forming the bank-note are first engraved by hand on separate steel blocks, which are afterwards hardened and preserved as permanent patterns. The engravings are then transferred in relief to the surfaces of soft steel rollers, by rolling these over the pattern blocks under a heavy pressure; and the rollers after being hardened are used as dies to impress the engraving upon the printing plates of soft steel. These plates are easily repaired by applying the rollers to them again; and the table on which the plate is laid for receiving the pressure of the master roller can be slightly tilted so as to bring up the impression on any particular portion. The bed of the table is made with a convex cylindrical segment lying within a concave one, the plate to be engraved being in the centre of motion. A complete description of this bank-note printing machine, which was constructed by the late Mr. Thomas Grubb, was given by him in a paper read at the former Dublin Meeting of the Institution (Proceedings 1865, page 166).
THE OBSERVATORY, DUNSINK.
The astronomical observatory of Dunsink, belonging to Trinity College, from which it is five miles distant, is situated on an elevated and beautiful site to the north of the Phcenix Park. It contains a large meridian circle by Pistol. and Martin; a 12-inch refractor mounted by Grubb, with an object glass by Cauchoix; and a recording chronograph.
CUSTOM HOUSE FLOUR MILL.
MacMullen, Shaw and Co
This mill, the property of Messrs. MacMullen Shaw and Co., was worked with fourteen pairs of stones until March 1886, when it was fitted by Mr. Henry Simon of Manchester with a complete roller plant, capable of working up to eight sacks of flour an hour. The machinery is driven by two horizontal condensing engines, with cylinders 21 inches diameter and 4 feet stroke, together indicating 130 horse power; the valves are double-beat, and are caused to revolve slightly at each lift, so that they fall on a new face each time.
Steam is supplied from two Lancashire boilers, each 30 feet long and 6 feet diameter. The wheat-cleaning department occupies the three floors over the engine-house, and contains a zigzag separator, two of Byrne's vertical scourers, a Young's double aspirator, a Throop's brush machine, a magnetic machine, and a rotary sieve; the last serves to grade the wheat into two sizes before going to the first break roller.
On the ground floor of the mill proper is the main driving spur-wheel, of about 8 feet diameter with helical teeth, fixed on the engine shaft and gearing into a pinion of 3 feet 8 inches diameter upon the main shaft, which carries a rope drum of 8 feet diameter having grooves for eight 1.5-inch ropes. Four of these ropes drive a lay-shaft, from which the roller mills on the first floor are put in motion; and the other four drive the shafting on the second floor, from which power is transmitted to the remaining machinery. On the ground floor are the bottoms of seventeen elevators.
On the first floor are nine sets of Simon's roller mills for the reduction of the wheat and the flouring of the middlings. The wheat is reduced in six breaks, of which the first is effected in a four-roller mill with grooved chilled-iron rolls; the two sizes of wheat, as they come from the cleaning department, are here reduced separately on opposite sides of the machine. The five remaining breaks are effected in three similar mills with rolls of 10 inches diameter. The flouring of the middlings, and the reduction of the semolina, are performed by five three-high smooth-roller mills, four of which have rolls of 10 inches diameter; and there is also a four-roller mill with 7-inch rolls. Underneath this floor is the exhaust trunk, 12 inches square, through which by means of a suction fan the heated air is drawn from the spouts connected with the roller mills.
The dressing machinery is arranged on the second and third floors. On the second floor is a double gravity purifier, and a single gravity purifier for the semolina, both of which are fitted with adjustable valves, and effect thirty-six separations; a double reform purifier and a sieve purifier which are fed with the tailings from the centrifugals; a sieve purifier for the break middlings; a silk reel, 22 feet long, receiving its feed from a similar reel on the floor above, and dressing the break meal from the second and third and fourth breaks; a dust collector exhausting from the two sieve purifiers and from the roller mills on the first floor; also the worm conveyors which collect the flour from each machine. The spouts are so arranged that the working of the mill can be checked by an examination of each distinct flour as it falls from the centrifugals, before it is mixed in the conveyors.
On the third floor is a silk reel, 22 feet long; eight three-sheet centrifugals with double worm conveyors; a first-break scalper, which is a combined wire and silk centrifugal; three purifiers built in one frame and provided with a grading sieve; a silk reel, 19 feet long, for offals; and a purifier for the coarse brassy middlings before their reduction in the smooth-roller mill on the first floor; also scalpers; and nineteen elevator tops, arranged all in one line, and each driven separately. One of the centrifugals is of the double horizontal kind, treating two distinct products, one at each end. Tho head sheet of the first-break scalper is covered with wire to scalp the first-break product, and the remaining part with silk to separate the dirty flour and middlings. The purifiers are used for the preliminary purification of the first quality of semolina, which passes thence to the larger semolina purifiers on the floor below.
The warehouse adjoining the mill has three floors, and is capable of holding 6,000 barrels of wheat, each barrel containing 280 lbs. It is divided into two distinct portions, and in each half are two sets of elevators. One set carries the wheat from the ground-floor entrance to the storing floor above, and the other set carries it into the wheat- cleaning department.
HANOVER STREET FLOUR MILL.
Walter Brown and Co
This establishment, belonging to Messrs. Walter Brown and Co., was originally an oil mill, but in 1862 the building was raised two floors higher and fitted up for the manufacture of flour.
It was worked at first with stones, then with stones and rollers combined, and finally in 1885 was fitted by Messrs. Thomas Robinson and Son of Rochdale with a complete roller plant capable of working up to eight sacks of flour an hour. The old condensing beam-engine, which had run night and day almost continuously for nearly twenty-four years, was replaced in 1886 by a horizontal compound twin condensing engine, designed by Mr. A. B. Wilson, and built by Messrs. Victor Coates and Co., Belfast.
Steam at 100 lbs. pressure is supplied from a large multitubular boiler of the marine kind, constructed by Messrs. Harland and Wolff, Belfast.
On the first floor of the mill are two Garden City first-break discs, the break rolls, and two tailing rolls in one line; and all the smooth rolls in another. The first break, after grading the wheat, is done on the discs, and the other six breaks are made on the rolls.
In 1869 a new chimney stack and a large new granary with four lofts were built.
DOCK FLOUR MILL.
William Brown and Son
This mill, belonging to Messrs. William Brown and Son, was one of the first in Dublin to use steam power, middlings purifiers, porcelain rolls, and American bolting reels; and when roller milling first came into notice, it contained twenty pairs of stones. Subsequently a half high-grinding system was introduced with smooth iron and porcelain rolls.
In 1885 the mill having been destroyed by fire was immediately rebuilt and fitted, by Messrs. Thomas Robinson and Son of Rochdale, with a full roller system capable of working up to eight sacks of flour an hour. The new mill is 63 feet by 35 feet inside, and contains four floors and a basement. In the basement are the shafting and pulleys, receiving motion from the fly-wheel of the engine; and the bottoms of twenty-three sets of elevators. On the ground floor are twelve double horizontal roller mills: four are used for the breaks, which are seven in number; and eight for the reduction of middlings and semolina.
The first break is performed on a three-roll machine, the centre roll being fixed and the two outer rolls working against it; the corrugations are two to the inch, and the centre roll has smooth and corrugated surfaces for breaking hard and soft wheat respectively.
The second and third breaks are performed by rolls 9 inches diameter and 24 inches long; and the remaining four breaks by rolls 9 inches diameter and 30 inches long. The roller mills are all exhausted by means of a powerful fan on this floor.
The first floor contains three purifiers for re-purifying middlings, a wheat grader and weigher, two flour packers, and three offal packers.
On the second floor are the clean-wheat bin, a gravity purifier, three sieve purifiers, a dusting centrifugal, four flour-dressing centrifugals, and two reels for re-dressing the flour.
The third floor contains the remainder of the dressing machines, namely two reels for germ meal and for grading, eight ceutrifugals for flour dressing, a shorts duster and a bran duster, and six break scalpers, in which are incorporated the re-scalpers. The wheat is wormed in on this floor from the adjoining screen room. The attic contains a sorting reel and the elevator heads.
The screen room or wheat-cleaning department is separated from the mill proper, and contains separators, Morgan scourers, eleven cylinders for separating oats and barley, one of Herbert and Law's Waverley scourers, a Garden City brush machine, a magnetic separator, a large dust collector for collecting the dust from all these machines, and Howarth's dust collector for collecting dust from the rolls. The motive power is supplied from a vertical compound condensing engine with cylinders 17 and 29 inches diameter and 3 feet stroke, fitted with automatic cut-off.
The engines and boilers were supplied by Messrs. Rowan of Belfast.
RINGSEND ROAD FLOUR MILL, AND CITY OF DUBLIN BAKERY.
The flour mill belonging to Messrs. Boland, situated at the edge of the Ringsend Dock, was worked with more than forty pairs of stones until 1880, when eighteen pairs were replaced by Mr. J. Harrison Carter of London with a complete roller plant capable of turning out 200 sacks of flour per day of twenty-four hours; and twenty-two pairs of stones are still used, which can produce about 150 sacks of flour per day. The warehouse is a stone building of seven storeys, capable of holding 3,000 tons of wheat, and having its floors supported on iron columns. It contains a warehouse separator and a cockle machine for the preliminary cleaning of the grain, and a Simon's automatic weighing machine. The grain is lifted by means of large elevators, and distributed by belts to the various hoppers containing the several grades of wheat. In the cleaning department the wheat passes through a Victor smutter, two Seek polishers, and two Throop brush machines.
In the Roller mill department, the basement is occupied by the shafting and pulleys for driving the machinery. On the ground floor, ranged in three rows, are the roller mills for reducing the wheat into flour in six breaks. The first break is effected on two of Fir's mills with grooved chilled-iron rolls, and the remaining five breaks are performed on five similar mills by Messrs. Escher Wyss and Co. The flouring of the semolina and middlings is effected by nine of Carter's three-high mills with smooth chilled-iron rolls, and four of Wegmann's porcelain roller mills. On the first floor are six scalpers for separating the broken particles of the wheat from the semolina middlings and flour, a hopper holding the wheat for the first break, and a packer for packing the bakers' flour.
On the second floor is one of Penney's wheat graders for sizing the wheat before it is fed into the hopper of the first-break roller mill, two of Carter's three-high smooth-roller mills, a bran duster, a centrifugal for the low grade, and one of Mooney's dust collectors exhausting the heated air from the roller mills on the ground floor; also a worm table consisting of a number of worms placed close together longitudinally, for facilitating the examination of the various products which can be transferred from the different machines to any one worm on the table.
On the third floor are two of Carter's gravity purifiers, two of Smith's purifiers, one double-sieve Garden City purifier, one Hunter purifier, and a dust collector which collects the stive from the Garden City purifier.
The fourth floor contains eight centrifugals covered with silk, two covered with wire, a dust collector, and the cleaned-wheat hopper. On the fifth floor are eight centrifugals, two long silk reels for grading the semolina, and three fans, one exhausting from the dust collector, one from the roller mills, and one from the gravity purifiers. The machinery is driven by two twin horizontal surface-condensing engines, having cylinders 20 inches diameter and 46 inches stroke, with a fly-wheel 15 feet diameter. They indicate 180 horse-power, and were built by Messrs. Fairbairn about twenty years ago.
The steam is supplied at a pressure of 60 lbs. per square inch from a steel tubular boiler of the marine kind, 18 feet long and 10 feet diameter, containing 140 tubes and three furnaces, and made by Messrs. Bewley Webb and Co. of Dublin.
In the Stone mill department, the basement is occupied by shafting and pulleys and two fans exhausting from a dust collector on the first floor, which also contains twenty-two pairs of millstones. On the second floor is a large break machine, four sets of smooth chilled-iron roller mills, a long dusting reel, the hoppers for feeding the millstones, and a dust collector. The third floor contains a scalper, two centrifugals, and five purifiers. On the fourth floor are six silk reds, 24 feet long, and a purifier. The fifth or top floor is devoted to the remainder of the dressing machinery, consisting of six silk reels, a centrifugal, a purifier, a bran duster, and a dust collector.
The power is obtained from a beam-engine of 100 indicated horse-power, with cylinder 30 incises diameter and 6 feet stroke and a fly-wheel 28 feet diameter; the engine was erected in 1846 by Messrs. Fairbairn, and drives the mill through gearing bolted to the fly-wheel. The steam is supplied by two Lancashire boilers, 36 feet long and 6.5 feet diameter, constructed by Messrs. Barrington of Dublin.
The City of Dublin Bakery, erected in 1874, occupies an area of 15,000 square feet, and stands in its own ground of 31 acres. The main bakehouse measures 100 feet by 120 feet, and its roof consists of a double arch supported by iron spans and cast-iron columns. It contains two rows of ovens, ten in each row, heated by coal and fired from the side. The kneading is performed by seven machines, in each of which about two sacks of flour is stirred and kneaded by means of a couple of blades working on a horizontal axis, and set at such angles as to ensure the most thorough treatment of the mass. The kneading troughs are fed from an overhead gangway, along which the materials are run on a tramway. Parallel with the kneaders is a line of moulding boards, on which the dough is shaped into loaves ready fur baking; these boards are served by 100 troughs running on wheels. All the operations are timed with great precision by signals from the foreman. In a smaller bakery are four ovens; and a bakehouse for fancy-bread is provided with four of Perkins' steam ovens heated by superheated steam in iron pipes arranged in two horizontal layers, the upper layer forming the crown of the oven, while the lower passes underneath the iron plate flooring. In front of these ovens are hot plates for giving the dough a preliminary baking.
BALL'S BRIDGE BAKERY.
Johnston and Co (of Dublin)
This bakery, belonging to Messrs. Johnston and Co., has recently been completely re-modelled on the most modern system; and has been fitted with Pfleiderer's improved dough-making machinery, the necessary baking facilities being afforded by twenty-five of Bailey and Baker's continuous ovens. Water power is employed for driving the machinery. The establishment is capable of baking 1,000 sacks of flour per week. About 150 men are engaged in the work of the bakery, and over 50 horses and vans.
AERATED WATER MANUFACTORY.
Cantrell and Cochrane
These works, belonging to Messrs. Cantrell and Cochrane, are situated in Nassau Place, and cover nearly half an acre. They employ over 500 men, and if required can turn out 160,000 bottles per day, tramways being laid down in all directions to facilitate the conveyance of bottles in the works. The water is obtained from the famous St. Patrick's well. There are two large generators of carbonic acid gas, two powerful steam engines, a travelling lift designed by Sir Henry Cochrane, and twelve bottling machines, of which four are automatic rotary machines and arc each capable of turning out 2,000 filled bottles per hour, requiring five boys to tie them. The gas from the generators, after being thoroughly purified, is stored in gasometers to be drawn off as required; and a pressure of about 150 lbs. per square inch is employed for impregnating the water with it.
In the cleaning department the bottles are first placed in hot water, then brushed both inside and outside, and finally rinsed in pure cold water. They are then passed to the bottling machines ranged down the centre of the bottling room, and are placed beneath the mouth of the feeding-tube; the cork is driven nearly home by a descending rod, and the required quantity of flavouring syrup is then forced in, the atmospheric air exhausted, the bottle filled up, and the cork driven home and wired. The automatic rotary machines are each fed by one man, and perform all the above operations automatically, except the wiring.
In order to avoid risk of metallic contamination, nothing but gutta-percha, glass, and silver is used in connection with the bottling machines; and glass, porcelain, or similar material in the syrup department, which is situated above the bottling room. The bottles to be shipped abroad are packed in barrels, being surrounded by hay and straw to prevent risk of breakage.
MINERAL WATER MANUFACTORY.
James Shanks and Co
This factory, the property of Messrs. James Shanks and Co., was established in 1868, and occupies the site formerly covered by the famous Dublin Ale Brewery of Messrs. Alley. Some of the old brewery buildings are still in existence, in sound condition, and form part of the present concern; but the main building is new and contains three storeys.
The ground floor is laid in concrete, and the upper floors are formed of planks supported on iron girders and metal columns; the roof is mainly of glass. The motive power is supplied by an Otto gas engine, and the machinery is of the most improved kind from a number of makers. Some of the carbonic acid gas generators, pumps, and condensers, are by Mondollot of Paris; and there are also some of the Belfast pattern. Both hand and power bottling machines are employed, and are fitted with perforated guards to obviate risk from the explosion of bottles. Wire eye-protectors are also worn by the operatives at work close to the filling machinery.
The factory is spacious, well lighted, and airy, and work is carried on under the best conditions. The aerated beverages manufactured find markets in North and South America and the colonies, as well as in Dublin and the south and west of Ireland.
MIDLAND GREAT WESTERN RAILWAY LOCOMOTIVE CARRIAGE AND WAGON WORKS, BROADSTONE.
The principal feature of these works is the engine building and repairing shop, erected about nine years ago. It is 217 feet long by 200 feet wide, under one roof consisting of six bays; and is fitted with all the necessary modern machinery and appliances. Engines and tenders are lifted by hydraulic travelling gantries. The machinery is driven by a combined pair of compound non-condensing wall engines of 120 nominal H.P. The boiler-makers' and smiths shops are furnished with Tweddell's hydraulic riveting machines and other labour-saving tools, steam hammer, and shingling furnace. The carriage and wagon shops, where building and repairs are done, are supplied with all needful wood-working machinery, that in the carriage department being driven by an Otto gas engine.
ALLIANCE GAS WORKS.<be> Alliance and Dublin Consumers Gas Co
The works of the Alliance and Dublin Consumers Gas Company consist of four stations, two of which occupy 61 acres in Great Brunswick Street, Dublin, and one is at Kingstown and one at Bray. The district for lighting extends from Clontarf on the north side of the river Liffey to Bray Head, a distance of 12 miles down the coast, and comprises an area of 98 square miles. The number of miles of mains of various sizes from 3 feet to 3 inches diameter is about 620. Between 120,000 and 130,000 tons of coal and cannel are carbonised yearly, producing from 1,300 to 1,400 million cubic feet of gas. The coal is brought by steamer from Newcastle, and discharged by means of steam cranes into iron trap-bottom wagons, which are either sent direct to the retort houses and emptied in front of the retorts, or to a steam lift at the end of the coal store, through the roof of which runs a line of rails, with a friction lowering cage at the end for empty wagons only. The retort houses are five in number, two being on the stage principle; they contain altogether 1,550 retorts, and are capable of producing over 7,000,000 cubic feet of gas per day, which is more than a million cubic feet beyond the present requirements. The firing is direct, with either coke or tar. The materials used in the purifiers are oxide of iron or bog ore from King's County, and lime.
DUBLIN UNITED TRAMWAYS WORKS.
Dublin United Tramways
At the car works and depot, situated at the terminus of the line at Inchicore, can be soon the processes of tramcar building and the stables. At Kingsbridge, adjacent to Guinness's Brewery, is a granary and depot, where forage for over 1,000 horses is prepared and sent out daily; there are also stables here. At Terenure there is a depot for 200 horses; and at Rathfarnham Road, Terenure, another for 108 horses.
LUCAN WOOLLEN FACTORY.
Hill and Sons
This factory, belonging to Messrs. Hill and Sons, and situated at Lucan about six miles west of Dublin, was founded in 1869 for the manufacture of Irish wool chiefly grown in the neighbourhood. Commencing with one dozen looms it now employs about 300 hands. The entire process can be seen from the taking in of the wool to the turning out of the cloth. The machinery is driven by water power by two turbines and one ordinary water-wheel; and a steam engine is now being added for driving more machinery that has lately been erected. The mills are lighted by electricity, the generators being driven by a turbine. The durable cloth manufactured is disposed of largely in Ireland, and a considerable quantity is now finding favour in England and America.
ANNA LIFFEY FLOUR MILL, LUCAN.
George Shackleton and Sons
These mills, belonging to Messrs. George Shackleton and Sons, are situated on the river Liffey near the village of Lucan, about six miles west of Dublin. They have been enlarged several times since 1860, and were worked with twelve pairs of stones until 1884, when they were re-fitted by Messrs. John Fiechter and Sons of Liverpool with a complete roller plant capable of working up to about 1,000 sacks of flour per week. Power is obtained from the river, by means of a breast ventilating-bucket wheel of 70 horsepower, and an inward-flow turbine of 50 horse-power, supplemented in the summer months by a compound semi-fixed engine of 25 horsepower.
BESSBROOK SPINNING MILLS AND ELECTRIC TRAMWAY.
Bessbrook Spinning Co
The Bessbrook Flax Spinning Mills, which are amongst the oldest in Ireland where power spinning has been carried on, owe their existence to a stream of the same name, which furnished power before the age of steam. Their situation is shown in the plan, Plate 79.
In 1846 they came into the possession of Mr. John Grubb Richardson and his brothers, who erected the present buildings chiefly of cut granite, which is the prevailing stone of the district; since that time additions have frequently been made of the same substantial material. The manufactures carried on in addition to flax spinning are the bleaching of yarns and the weaving of various classes of linen fabrics, including damasks, towels, and sheetings.
The weaving of double damask table-cloths, of better quality and without right and wrong side, was first accomplished here in 1868 in jacquard machines modified for the purpose by Mr. Barcroft. In one of these looms was woven in 1876 a double damask table-cloth representing a group three-quarters life-size from Benjamin West's picture of Penn's treaty with the Indians; the production of the pattern required 17,000 cards with 1,530,000 holes and blanks, instead of the 255,000 cards with 102,000,000 holes and blanks which would have been necessary in the ordinary jacquard loom.
The principal works are driven by three pairs of steam engines and a turbine; the engines are a horizontal tandem of 450 HP., a reconstructed compound of 450 HP. with large jacketed receiver, and a pair of beam-engines of 600 HP.; the turbine, of 160 HP. with 48 feet fall of water, is situated underground and geared to the engines. Several smaller turbines and steam engines are also kept at work for various purposes.
In 1870 extensive waterworks were constructed for supplying the town of Newry as well as the mills. Five miles of catchment drains were laid, and storage was provided for 750 million gallons by the construction of a reservoir known as Camlough Lake, which is situated about two miles from Bessbrook in a mountain valley.
The various works of the Bessbrook company give employment to rather over 3,500 hands, and a number more are engaged in handloom manufacture, which is carried on in cottages over a considerable area in Ulster. The village of Bessbrook, which has been built from time to time by the firm, has now grown to the proportions of an Irish country town, having a population of about 3,500. The district around being thickly populated, many of the workers come from some little distance. A spacious hall has recently been erected, with library and reading rooms &c. From the Bessbrook granite quarries and polishing works, which are about a mile distant, some very fine work has been supplied, including one of the spiral staircases in the Manchester Town Hall.
In order to connect Bessbrook with the Great Northern Railway and also with the port of Newry, an electric railway of 3 feet gauge and 3.03 miles length was opened about three years ago for which the electrical plant was designed by Dr. Edward Hopkinson. The motive power is generated exclusively by water power, at Millvale, half way to Newry, Plate 79. The turbine here erected for driving the dynamos is an inward-flow vortex-wheel with double buckets, working on a horizontal shaft from which the two Edison-Hopkinson dynamos are driven direct through belts. It is worked by a total fall of water of 291 feet, of which 16 feet is pressure in the head pipe and 13 feet is suction in the tail pipe. When running at 290 revolutions and 1,504 cubic feet of water per minute it develops a maximum of 62 HP. The working potential of the dynamos is 245 volts with an average current of 72 amperes, when driven at 1,000 revolutions per minute; and one dynamo is sufficient for the working of the traffic.
The line rises from Newry to Bessbrook almost all the way; the total rise amounts to 185 feet, or 1 in 86 on the average, the steepest gradient being 1 in 50. A maximum load of thirty tons, including vehicles and passengers, is drawn up the three miles in thirty minutes by one dynamo. A novel feature of this railway is the employment of wagons having wheels with plain tires, without flanges, so that they arc used also on the ordinary roads at either end of the line, thereby avoiding transhipment of goods. Immediately outside the rails of a feet gauge, on which the electric cars run, are laid on each side smaller rails 7-8ths inch lower; on these run the flangeless wagon wheels, being kept in position by the higher rails, which act as guard rails. To suit the ordinary roads, the wagon wheels are also loose on their axles, while these are not fixed but run in journals; there is thus freedom in both wheel and axle, whereby the friction is considerably reduced, especially in running round curves. Twenty trains are run daily, ten in each direction, making a mileage of 60 miles a day. Since the opening of the line in October 1885 up to 31 July 1888 it has carried 244,000 passengers and 34,501 tons of merchandise with a mileage of 53,940 miles.
During July 1888 the traffic was 6,846 passengers, and 1,590 tons of goods, and 1,668 miles run; the daily averages were 240 passengers and 61.3 tons. In 1886 the traffic amounted to 97,668 passengers and 12,000 tons of merchandise.
At Millvale the line crosses the county road obliquely on the level for a distance of fifty yards. The central rail forming the conductor throughout the rest of the line is here replaced by overhead wires on the method devised by Dr. John Hopkinson. The gates protecting the crossing are opened and shut automatically by water-power, which is thrown in and out of action by the passing car striking a lever before reaching the gates and again after having passed through them.
Near the middle of its length the line passes under time Craigmore viaduct of the Great Northern Railway, having eighteen arches and a height of 126 feet from the stream to the rails.
SHIPBUILDING AND MARINE-ENGINE WORKS, BELFAST.
Harland and Wolff
These works, situated on Queen's Island and belonging to Messrs. Harland and Wolff, were originally started in 1853 by Messrs. Robert Hickson and Co., in order to use the product of the Belfast Iron Works which had been commenced in 1850; but owing to the cost of importing coal the iron manufacture had to be given up in a few years.
In 1854 was launched a sailing ship of 1,289 tons. In 1859 the iron shipbuilding yard of Messrs. Hickson and an adjoining wood shipbuilding yard were acquired by Mr. Edward J. Harland, who was shortly afterwards joined by Mr. G. W. Wolff and later by Mr. Walter H. Wilson and Mr. W. J. Pirrie.
The progress from 1859 was very rapid: in the five years ending with 1864 thirty vessels measuring 30,276 tons were constructed; in the five years 1865-69 thirty-six vessels and 28,023 tons; in 1870-74 seventeen vessels and 46,283 tons; in 1875-79 forty-four vessels and 57,068 tons; in 1880-84 forty-two vessels and 105,626 tons; and in the three and a half years ending June 1888 thirty-four vessels and 89,769 tons.
There are also at the present time eight vessels in different stages, amounting to about 41,330 tons, all being constructed of steel. In 1868 the gross tonnage included H.M. screw gun-vessel "Lynx"; in 1878 H.M.S. "Heck," a torpedo ship; in 1880 H.M. screw gun-vessel "Algerine"; and in 1886 H.M. screw gun-vessels "Lizard " and "Bramble." In 1870 was launched the "Oceanic," the first of the famous "White Star" fleet, which may be said to have marked a new era in the history of Atlantic steam navigation. Since this date have been constructed for the same line no less than twenty vessels with a tonnage of 75,000; and there are now in hand four vessels of 28,950 tons.
In 1858 the business commenced with a staff of a hundred men and a yard of about 11 acres in extent. The concern now covers upwards of 40 acres, employs above five thousand hands, and expends in wages alone over £300,000 annually.
As shown in the general plan, Plate 80, the works arc excellently situated, the building slips being at each end, with a depth of water sufficient for launching the largest vessels for mercantile or war purposes. Between the two ranges of slips are situated the workshops, which consist of extensive smiths', fitters', and platers' shops, fitted up with the necessary machinery; painting shops; sail lofts; riggers', mast building, and boat building shops; joiners', cabinet-makers', upholsterers', carvers', and polishers' shops; and plumbers' and coppersmiths' shops: the whole arranged with a view to the greatest economy of labour.
A narrow-gauge tramway intersects the entire works and connects the various departments. There are extensive piles of timber, iron, steel, and other materials, and locomotive cranes for handling them.
Passing through the ship yard, and crossing the slip and part of the graving dock, and the fitting-up jetties, and thence across the caisson, the engineering portion of the establishment is reached, forming the southernmost portion of the premises. Alongside is Abercorn Basin, where the largest ships are easily accommodated for receiving their machinery. Lines of rails intersect the shops, and run under the eighty-ton steam-sheers on the quay. The buildings are reared on massive iron columns supporting iron girders, which in turn carry the powerful steam travelling cranes in each bay.
In the principal building the centre space is reserved for the erection of the engines under construction, and the remainder of the building is fitted with machines and tools of the most modern type.
Another block of buildings comprises the boiler house, containing three large boilers which provide steam for the entire works; also the general store, the brass foundry, and the coppersmiths' shop.
Next is the iron foundry with cupolas and all other appurtenances for the production of the heaviest castings.
Beyond is the boiler shop with appropriate machinery.
The mechanical appliances are all of the most approved kind, and many of novel construction, enabling the largest engines to be turned out for meeting the steamship requirements of the present day. The works are lighted by electricity, and all the departments are connected by telephone with the main office and with one another.
YORK STREET FLAX SPINNING AND WEAVING MANUFACTORY.
York Street Flax Spinning Co
These works were founded in 1830 by the late Mr. Andrew Mulholland, and are believed to be the first of the kind in Ireland. They occupy a space of 786 feet by 221 feet or an area of four acres, extending from York Street on the east to North Queen Street on the west, and from Henry Street on the south to Sussex Street on the north. They employ about 4,000 workers.
The central part of the west end, a fire-proof building of eight flats, with an intermediate stage between the first and second, occupies a space of 124 feet by 50 feet; it contains the stairs, lobbies, and cage hoists, which also serve the wings: also covered loading and receiving chambers, and a tackle hoist at the north end. In it are stored the flax, tow, dressed line, brown cloth, &c. The roof forms a cistern supplying hydrants on the lobbies.
The south wing is a building 72 feet by 40 feet, and has five flats. The sipper floors are formed of 4-inch planks, bolted to wrought-iron beams, and having hoop-iron slips in the joints, and covered with 5/8-inch Baltic flooring. The outer edges of the flooring rest on the set-off of the walls, or else the brickwork is corbelled over to receive them, so as to prevent dust from falling through, or water in case of fire. This building contains hydraulic presses, crane, pumps, and gas engine to drive them; and rooms for handkerchiefs, for ornamenting, and for packing finished goods.
The north wing, a fire-proof building of five flats, 299 feet by 46 feet, is the preparing mill. The first flat is used for tow-carding and preparing; the second and third for flax or line preparing, which includes spreading, drawing, and roving; the fourth flat for rough hand and machine hackling; and the fifth for hand hackling and sorting. The east end communicates with the spinning mill by stairs and hoist through a building 26 feet by 16 feet, having six fiats, of which the second, third, fourth, and fifth are used for storing rove on its way to the spinning mill, the sixth for reeling-room stores, and the first flat with addition is the engineers' shop.
The spinning mill, 221 feet by 42 feet, has six flats, and contains 32,000 spindles. The first fiat is used for hackle-makers' shops, engineers' stores, used turning and fluting shop, and weaving, beetling, cropping, and lapping rooms; the second, third, fourth, and fifth flats are wet-spinning rooms; and the sixth is a reeling room, from which there is a wire tramway 103 feet long to the drying loft, on the third flat of the boiler houses.
On the south side are three buildings occupied as offices, sale rooms, yarn store, and stock and lapping rooms, and containing lapping and measuring machines.
In the quadrangle are eight Lancashire boilers, and three beam- engines with Corliss. valves. One engine with 35-inch cylinder and 5 feet stroke, making 45 revolutions per minute, drives the preparing mill. The two others, with 35-inch cylinders and 7 feet stroke, making 32 revolutions per minute, drive the spinning mill. For driving the weaving factory and heavy finishing machinery there are four Lancashire boilers supplying steam to two beam-engines with 38-inch cylinders and 7 feet stroke, which have wrought-iron beams and Corliss valves, and make 29 revolutions per minute; they drive two main shafts direct off the fly-wheel. The several sets of engines develop about 1,400 horse-power.
At the south-east corner is a five-flat building, in which the first flat is used for weaving, the second for pirn winding, the third for yarn dressing and beaming, the fourth for bank winding, and the fifth for dressing. Adjoining is another building, in which the first flat is used for heavy finishing machinery and pirn stock-room, the second for pirn winding, the third for beaming, and the fourth for hank winding and beaming. In an adjacent building the first flat is used as a drawing-in shop and beam stock-room, and the second as a cloth-passing room, from which a carrying baud conveys the cloth through 138 feet distance to cropping machines on the first flat of the spinning mill. The weaving sheds contain about 1,000 looms for plain and damask linens. Bleaching is carried on in works at Muckamore, County Antrim.
ROPE AND TWINE MANUFACTORY, CONNSWATER.
Belfast Ropework Co
These works, belonging to the Belfast Ropework Co., are employed in the manufacture of ropes, cords, twines, lines, gaskettings, plaited sash-cords, and sundry other articles of a similar description. They occupy an area of twelve acres, about eight of which are under cover. The engines are compound vertical, 800 indicated horse-power; and about 1,000 persons are employed.
ROYAL ULSTER PRINTING AND STATIONERY WORKS.
Marcus Ward and Co
These works, the property of Messrs. Marcus Ward and Co., have a floor area of over four acres and contain nearly 1.5, million cubic feet. The building was erected in 1874 to suit the special requirements of the rapidly increasing business. The works are arranged in the form of the letter T, with five lofty storeys, reached by a central granite staircase and also by a lift. Each storey is divided into two portions by fire-proof walls and iron doors. On the ground floor are the front offices, the sales and sample departments, the stores, where large quantities of paper and other materials are kept in stock, and the machine-rooms.
The lithographic printing department is on one side of the building, and contains the lithographic stones arranged vertically in wooden racks, and numbered and registered. The letterpress printing department is on the other side of the building; some of the machines print on both sides of the paper at once, and others print several colours at one operation.
Railway-ticket printing, photo-lithography, photo-zincography, electrotyping, and stereotyping are carried on in an adjoining building.
On the top floor, reached by means of the lift, are carried on the processes of enamelling in the various colours, mounting, gelatining, varnishing, gumming, &c.; also the making of cardboard and envelopes, black-bordering, and the preparation of stationery of every description.
On the next lower floor is the bookbinding department, containing many labour-saving machines.
On the next floor below is the box-making department, for the preparation of fancy goods.
On the next lower floor are the compositors', artists', engravers', and die-sinkers' rooms; also the sample and board rooms, the directors' and managers' rooms, the travellers' sample room, and telephone rooms, &c. Amongst the specialities of these works may be mentioned the linen writing papers, which are made from pure linen cuttings collected from the linen factories in the north of Ireland.
ROYAL IRISH LINEN WAREHOUSE.
Robinson and Cleaver
This building, the property of Messrs. Robinson and Cleaver, erected in 1887, has a frontage of 128 feet to Donegall Square, and of 78 feet to Donegall Place. The foundations of the building are formed by driving 500 piles, 40 to 45 feet long, the substratum consisting of 30 feet of river mud, locally called "sleech." Courses of heavy timber were bolted longitudinally and crosswise on the top of the piles, and each course was filled in with concrete. On the concrete were laid blocks of granite, from 3 to 5 tons, carrying piers constructed of solid fire-brick and cement, and shafts of polished Aberdeen red granite, with moulded bases and fluted caps, backed by iron stanchions of 7 tons weight, filled with concrete and surmounted by a frieze of dark green Swedish granite. From these rise the successive tiers of the superstructure, built of pure white sandstone, obtained from the Glebe Quarry, County Down. All the columns, of which there are over 250 dividing the windows, arc of polished red granite with carved caps, no two being alike; the plinths are of polished black granite.
The main building is nearly 90 feet high, with octagonal towers of about 120 feet height at two of the corners, and at the principal corner a circular tower, 150 feet high, from which a fine view is obtained of the town, harbour, and surrounding country; the cupolas of the towers are covered with copper.
A hydraulic American elevator conveys passengers to the top storey of the building.
The clock in the tower has two illuminated dials, each six feet diameter. The quarters ring the Westminster chimes, and the hours are struck on five Harrington tubes. The interior of the building is divided into eight floors, having a total area of 60,000 square feet.
In the basement, which is lit by prismatic lights, are the boiler and engines for driving four dynamos for supplying electric are and incandescent lights; a Worthington steam-pump drawing water from a well 220 feet deep, and discharging 150 gallons per minute into a tank at the top of the building for driving the hydraulic lift &c.; air-pumps for supplying compressed air and exhaust for the pneumatic tubes which convey the cash from the counters to a central desk; a fire-proof strong room; and the receiving, packing, and despatching department.
The ground and first floors are fitted as sale-rooms and are connected by a staircase of white Sicilian marble. They are provided with every convenience, including a ladies' parlour and suitably appointed fitting rooms, one of which can be instantaneously darkened for judging colours by artificial light.
On the second floor, which is reached by a staircase of Australian jarrah wood, are the sample rooms, postal, despatch, and shipping departments, and the offices. The third floor is occupied with looms weaving handkerchiefs, linens, and table damasks of various kinds. Amongst these is a loom for weaving doyleys that measure 17 inches long by 15 inches broad; it contains 3,060 threads of warp and 4,012 threads of woof, for which the design was drawn on paper 12 feet long by 11 feet wide, divided into 12,000,000 squares. The loom is arranged to weave four doyleys at a time, and occupies a space over 12 feet in length and breadth, and 11 feet in height; it has five large jacquard machines, with 20,000 cards containing nearly 10,000,000 punched boles. From the machine there are 12,240 cords, with small weights attached, employed to lift the threads of yarn, and secured in position by 61,200 knots. A total weight of 428 lbs. is lifted at each throw of the shuttle.
The upper floors are used as workrooms for shirt and collar making, handkerchief hemming and dressing, &c. A dining rosin and kitchen, with every facility for cooking by strain and gas, are provided on the top floor.
The whole structure is heated by high-pressure steam. The wrought-iron gates which close the doorways at night are raised by machinery from the basement. The materials used in the construction of the building comprise 400,000 bricks; 30,000 cubic feet of sandstone; 29,000 cubic feet of timber; 360 tons of iron; 6,000 cubic feet of concrete; 4,300 square feet of polished granite; 11,500 square feet of polished plate glass; 25.5 miles of electric wire; 30,000 square feet of polished teak and mahogany; and about 3,000 square feet of mirrors.
The architects were Messrs. Young and Mackenzie, and the builders Messrs. H. and J. Martin, Belfast.
J. N. Richardson Sons and Owden
This warehouse, belonging to Messrs. J. N. Richardson Sons and Owden was built in 1869 from the designs of Messrs. Lanyon Lynn and Lanyon; the interior is specially arranged for carrying on the linen business in all departments. The goods include every variety of linen fabric, such as handkerchiefs, damasks, towels, and white linens. After being bleached at the firm's extensive bleaching works in the neighbourhood of Belfast, they are sent to the warehouse, where they are lapped, folded, and ornamented.
AERATED WATER MANUFACTORY.
Cantrell and Cochrane
These works, belonging to Messrs. Cantrell and Cochrane, and covering nearly half an acre, are situated in the south-east part of the town, where the Cromac springs give a fine supply of water, which is obtained from a well 166 feet deep and is pumped by engines on the ground floor up to large cisterns at the top of the building; the consumption amounts to about 17,000 gallons per day. The carbonic acid gas is generated in large cylinders on the ground floor, and after repeated purification by washing is stored in gasometers, from which it is drawn by the aerating machinery on the bottling floor.
In the laboratories on the second floor, the aerated. waters are tested from time to time, and the various ingredients used in their manufacture are analysed. Here also are prepared the various syrups, in which the chief ingredient is sugar; after being filtered through peculiar filters they arc poured into large slate tanks, from which the bottling machines on the floors below draw their supply. The vessels set apart for the syrups are all made of glass, porcelain, or slate, so that they can be easily cleaned. Preparatory to the bottling, the new and returned bottles are first thoroughly washed by a continuous process, being steeped in hot water, brushed inside and outside, and rinsed, and then passed down a slide to the bottling rooms. In the centre of the bottling room is the powerful aerating machinery, which impregnates the water with carbonic anhydride in strong cylinders under a pressure of 140 lbs. to 150 lbs. per square inch.
The water pumped direct from the well passes through a specially constructed filter into a slate cistern, which is covered with a glass lid and kept under lock and key to prevent contamination of any kind. The aerated water is then bottled and corked by the bottling machines, three of which are automatic rotary, and the rest are controlled by hand; the corks are wired by band. The automatic machines are each fed by one man, and work at the rate of 180 dozen per hour; on the other machines each man is expected to work at the rate of 20 dozen per hour. The whole of the piping used is made of gutta percha and chemically pure tin, and the interiors of the cylinders of the machines are either silvered or enamelled. The bottles for home supply are packed in compartment cases, while those for export are doubly wired and wrapped in paper and packed in barrels between bay or straw.
David Allen and Sons
These works, belonging to Messrs. David Allen and Sons, consist of two parallel buildings; the intervening space is covered over with a glass roof, and forms the litho poster machine-room, which contains the largest litho machines made. The stones are of unusually large size, measuring almost four feet by five feet and weighing about 10 cwts., and are imported from Germany. They are sold by weight, the price per pound increasing with the size.
Before being used they are polished and grained by machinery, and after being etched and gummed are conveyed to the machines by overhead tramways, frames being also provided for carrying the sheets on a tramway to and from the machines, and to the drying racks. Most of the work is printed on double quad crown sheets measuring 60 inches by 40 inches.
The litho machine-printing is performed on the first floor of the front building by means of a dozen machines, almost all of large size and of the latest construction.
The bronzing of the sheets is performed in an adjoining room, into which they are passed through apertures, so that no bronze can escape into the machine room. Extending to the left on this floor is a room devoted to the sorting of posters. In this room also, if the work is to be preserved after printing, the stones after being gummed up and labelled are stored away in racks.
On the floor above is the composing room, and also the letterpress machine-room, containing upwards of a dozen large machines, on some of which two colours can be printed simultaneously.
The third floor is entirely monopolised as a stock room, and for warehousing purposes. The photographic gallery and enlargement room occupy the fourth and highest floor.
The first floor of the rear building is devoted to bookbinding, paper-ruling, label-punching, gumming, varnishing, and other similar work. On this floor also are two ink mills, in which are made all the coloured inks.
The artists' department is on the second floor, which is lighted entirely from the roof. When a sketch has to be reproduced in an enlarged form as a poster, it is first traced, then enlarged to the size required in conte crayon, and rubbed down upon specially prepared stones, each of which corresponds in Size to a sheet of the poster. The sketch itself is cut into corresponding sections, one of which is given to the artist in charge of each stone, who reproduces that portion of the sketch. In this way a placard of about 100 square feet, which in ordinary working would involve the printing of about 100 stones, can be turned out in a fortnight.
On the basement is the wood-cutting department, all the wooden blocks in use being cut on the premises; and also a hot-water apparatus for heating the premises during the winter months.
BELFAST CORPORATION GAS WORKS.
These works were originally constructed in 1822, and in 1852 were placed under the management of Mr. James Stelfox, the father of the present manager. Since the acquisition of the works by the Belfast Corporation in 1874, numerous appliances have been provided for the despatch of work and saving of labour, including an extensive hydraulic plant, chiefly supplied by Sir William Armstrong and Co., for the discharge of coal, the storing of coke, and other similar work. As the town has increased with a rapidity almost without parallel, the works have been extended proportionately.
The quantity of gas made in 1852 was 87,870,000 cubic feet; in 1862 it was 173,939,000 cubic feet; in 1872 it was 410,000,000 cubic feet; in 1882 it was 614,791,000 cubic feet; and in the year ending 30 June 1888 it has reached 853,154,000 cubic feet.
The Claus system is about to be tried for purifying the gas by the complete neutralization of the acid impurities which it contains. With this object a sufficient supply of ammoniacal gas is introduced, and the resulting salts are then dissolved in a series of closed vessels by liquor supplied from a series of pumps. The liquor containing these impurities is kept in circulation, the carbonic acid and sulphuretted hydrogen being driven off in specially designed vessels; the sulphuretted hydrogen goes forwards to the sulphur kilns, in which the sulphur is recovered in a saleable form and the hydrogen consumed. This system it is hoped will prove completely successful, as the process is a continuous one, conducted in closed vessels, and would thus no doubt obviate the smells connected with gas works.
ORMEAU BRICK WORKS.
H. and J. Martin
Situated about 1.5 miles from the Exchange by the side of the river Lagan, these works form an important extension of the plant of Messrs. H. and J. Martin, and are perhaps the largest of the kind in the kingdom. On both shores of the Lagan, extending for several miles above Belfast, occur deposits of useful clay, overlying red sand; these vary from 2 to 100 feet in thickness, and are unusually free from foreign ingredients, the only impurities consisting of minute pieces of lime in a soft or chalky condition and a few carried boulders. The composition of the clay, when mixed with a proportion of the underlying sand, is most suitable for brick and tile making; uo puddling is required, and the material is only once turned over for the purpose of removing any large stones and mixing the sand in.
The machinery, which has been started this season, is at present arranged to turn out 60,000 perforated bricks per day of ten hours. It consists of a set of five horizontal rollers, 30 inches diameter and 4 feet 6 inches long, geared together and arranged in such order that the clay undergoes three successive pressings of increasing closeness; in the last the rolls are almost in contact.
The material is hauled up an inclined railway from the pit, and dumped into the roller hopper, no special arrangement being required for feeding it. From the roller mill it falls by gravity into two vertical pug mills, in which revolve upright shafts armed with angular blades and furnished with cams at the bottom; the blades are so set as to force the clay down, and the cams, which are made in helical form, drive it out through two horizontal dies in each mill. These dies are fitted with cores for making perforated or other bricks, and the stream of clay is forced through them on to cutting tables, where it is divided, ten bricks at a time, into the necessary sizes.
As it is of considerable importance to work the clay as firm as possible, since the green bricks then require less air-drying and are more easily handled, all parts of the machines are made extra strong; steel shafting and gearing are adopted throughout.
It is only in dry summer weather that any water is mixed in with the clay; at other times it is worked as it comes from the pits, and the bricks made from it in that condition are so firm that they can at once be handled.
The works are driven by a horizontal compound engine indicating about 200 H.P., with Corliss valves on the high-pressure cylinder, and using steam supplied by an ordinary Lancashire boiler at 80 lbs. pressure.
From the mill the bricks are wheeled by hand to the drying ground, whence after sufficient exposure to the air they are transferred in trucks running on a portable railway to the kilns. A comparatively sheet time on the drying ground suffices, as the perforations greatly facilitate evaporation as well as the subsequent firing. Hoffmann's kilns are used; these consist of a series of sixteen chambers arranged in oval form and with a chimney in the centre. The flues are so constructed that each chamber can be connected to the uptake and to its neighbours in succession. The capacity of each chamber is 13,000 bricks.
Firing is continuous and most economical, the only heat lost being the radiation from the walls of the kiln and the necessary chimney draft. The products of combustion from any chamber which for the time being is at full beat pass through the chambers to follow, thereby drying ao warming them up; while its supply of air is drawn through the hot bricks in those which have preceded it, thereby cooling them and adding to the efficiency of the combustion. The fuel required is about half that used in the ordinary kilns.
FALLS FOUNDRY AND ENGINEERING WORKS.
Combe, Barbour and Combe
These works, the property of Messrs. Combe Barbour and Combe, were commenced in 1845 for the manufacture of machinery for preparing, spinning, and twisting flax. They have steadily increased in size and in power of production, and their present output includes all the machines required for preparing, spinning, and twisting flax, hemp, jute, manilla, sisal, and other similar fibres, ranging from the finest yarns that are used in the manufacture of lace, to the coarsest yarns for twines and ropes; and also engines, shafting, and all millwright and fire-proof work, as well as all the accessory machines and special tools required in mills and factories. A very large variety of special tools are here in use.
It was in these works that rope driving originated (Proceedings 1876, page 392), and it is interesting to note that the first pair of rope pulleys made for main driving purposes, nearly thirty years ago, arc still at work here.
The works occupy an area of five acres, and the covered floor area is over 200,000 square feet; upwards of 1,400 hands are employed. The power is supplied by six boilers, and three condensing and nine non-condensing engines.
The first quay at Belfast was constructed as early as the beginning of the seventeenth century, but no works of magnitude were attempted in the harbour until the close of last century, up to which period the channel was shallow and circuitous, and the harbour without a dry dock. Large sums of money have since been expended en improvements.
The docks and basins now cover an area of 36 acres, and arc surrounded by 17,000 feet of quays; a floating dock which admits vessels drawing 23 feet, and two slipways, one of which receives vessels of 1,000 tons burden, and four graving docks, have been constructed as demanded by the requirements of trade.
The Alexandra graving dock, now on the eve of completion, is one of the largest in existence; its length is 800 feet, width of entrance 80 feet, depth 25 feet, width of floor 50 feet, and depth from coping to floor 31 feet. The principal quays are constructed of concrete, faced and coped with granite, and are provided with superior goods sheds, and traversed by tramways which connect the harbour with the various railways.
Modern mechanical appliances have been provided for the rapid and economical handling of goods. Small steam cranes, capable of lifting loads of 2 tons at a radius of 40 feet, and at the rate of 40 tons per hour, are placed on the principal quays. A steam derrick crane, capable of lifting loads of 100 tons at a radius of 50 feet, will shortly be placed at the Alexandra graving dock; and a 25-ton steam crane will soon be fixed on Princes quay for the accommodation of steamers arriving or departing with ponderous articles.
The new straight deep-water channel in continuation of Victoria Channel is being dredged to a depth of 26 feet, which is the depth of the present channel from the north end of the Twin Islands to Queen's bridge. Two powerful steam hopper dredgers, each capable of loading itself with. 800 tons of spoil in 40 minutes, have been employed night and day for more than two years at this work, which is rapidly approaching completion.
The revenue of the harbour for the past year was about £109,000; fifty years ago it was £9,600.
The tonnage which entered the port in 1887 was 1,670,000, while in 1807 it was only 288,000. The extent of the manufacturing industries may be inferred from the import of coal, which last year amounted to 850,000 tons. The flourishing shipbuilding yards on both sides of the river, as well as the ample storage accommodation provided in the vicinity of the docks, are situated on ground which has been reclaimed from the lough.
These particulars have been kindly furnished by Mr. W. A. Currie, Secretary to the Belfast Harbour Commissioners.
DESCRIPTION OF MEW ISLAND LIGHTHOUSE, BELFAST LOUGH. BY MR. WILLIAM DOUGLASS, CHIEF ENGINEER TO THE COMMISSIONERS OF IRISH LIGHTS.
This Lighthouse was lighted on 1st November 1884, and the usual bright and welcome beans was missed from the tower on the neighbouring Lesser Copeland Island, Plate 81, for the first time since 1816. In 1796 the Revenue Board exhibited a beacon fire of coals from a tower a few yards distant from the present site of Copeland tower; this was transferred in 1810 to the Dublin Ballast Board, who in 1813 commenced a new tower and dwellings, which were completed in 1816 from the designs and under the direction of Mr. G. Halpin.
During the days of sailing vessels Copeland light appears to have satisfied the requirements of the mariner. Later on, as steamboats increased in number and power, making straight courses where possible, and rounding points closely to reduce the mileage, it became evident that Mew Island was the proper place, especially during fog or haze, for a lighthouse intended to guard the southern turning point into Belfast Lough, Plate 81, and also for the general navigation of the coast by passing vessels. Several years elapsed however before an estimate was sanctioned by the Board of Trade for building the present Mew Island lighthouse station.
As seen from Plate 81, Mew Island forms the turning point for vessels entering Belfast Lough from southward, lying eastward of the Lesser Copeland, from which it is separated by a shallow channel only a few fathoms wide at low water. It is a low island, about 26 acres in extent, as shown in Plate 82. The site of the new lighthouse tower is in latitude 54° 41' 50" N and longitude 5° 31' 30" W, being 883 fathoms N 87' 14' E of the old Copeland tower. As shown in the ground plan, Fig. 3, and south elevation, Fig. 4, Plate 83, the station consists of a circular tower 98 feet high, Plate 84, the centre of light being 121 feet above high water, and the total height of tower from base to vane 1293, feet; a dwelling for lightkeepers, having a messroom and four bedrooms; a retort house, 24 feet by 22 feet; coal stores for cannel coal and furnace coal, each 25 feet by 10 feet 7 inches; a fog-signal house, 30 feet by 21 feet; and two gas-holders of 25 feet diameter, each having a capacity of 4,600 cubic feet.
There is also a shore station near Donaghadee, Plate 81, with commodious dwellings and gardens for five keepers; a boat slip, and a boat house with store above. The lighthouse tower, Plate 84, is of rubble masonry in Portland cement, stuccoed in Portland cement, with granite dressings; the other buildings of rubble masonry in lime mortar. The stone for the rubble work was quarried on the island, and the granite obtained from the neighbourhood of Newry.
The light is triform group-flashing, exhibiting a group of four flashes every minute; the group occupies 20 seconds, and the interval between the groups 38 seconds; the length of each flash is 4 seconds, and the eclipses between the flashes are each 11 second. The illuminating agent is cannel gas, consumed in three super-imposed burners of 108 jets each. In clear weather 32 jets only of the lowest burner are used, equal to 491 candles; in hazy weather all the jets in this burner are lighted, equal to 2,923 candles; and during fog all the jets in all the burners, or a total of 324 jets, thus increasing the power of the beans when observed through the lenses from the normal power of 13,645 candles for clear weather, to 189,446 candles during fog.
Lantern. —The lantern surmounting the tower, Plate 84, is placed on a cast-iron gallery, having a diameter of 21 feet; it has sixteen sides, with sloping roof, and measures from top of gallery to top of vane 30 feet 4 inches; the internal diameter is 14 feet, and the height of the glazed portion 13 feet 8 inches. The pedestal is composed of sixteen cast-iron plates, 5 feet high, securely bolted together; these are fixed to the gallery course by thirty-two 1.25-inch bolts. The plates are faced inside with polished mahogany, with a suitable ventilator for each plate. The framing for the glazed portion is formed of sixteen vertical wrought-iron bars, 4.5 inches by 11 inch, and two horizontal bars on each face, thus forming spaces for forty-eight panes of 3/8 onch plate-glass. The vertical bars fit tightly into recesses formed in the pedestal plates at the joints, where they are secured by four 11-inch bolts. All the sash-bars are rebated on the outside to receive the glass and putty, the glass being further secured and the joints made watertight by copper capping pieces, which cover the edges of adjoining panes, and are fixed to the sash bars by suitable screws. The tops of the vertical standards support a wrought-iron cornice plate, 6 inches by inch, to which they are secured by tap bolts; to this cornice plate the top cill, copper gutter, and lower ends of the rafters are bolted. The roof is formed of copper plates weighing 3 lbs. per square foot, supported on sixteen T iron rafters, whose lower ends are bolted to the cornice plate, and their upper ends to a central wrought-iron flanged connecting-ring, 3 feet diameter, over which is fixed a copper revolving cowl, hammered to shape, accurately balanced, and surmounted by a vane. The lantern floor is of cast- iron, in two annular rings; the outer is perforated in order to allow a free flow of air from the room below, in which are four windows so arranged as to admit the air required for the burners and also for keeping down the temperature when all the burners are in use.
Optical Apparatus. —This consists of a circular cast-iron pedestal, 6 feet diameter, formed of cast-iron frames filled in with glass panels and fitted with glazed doors. In it is placed the rotating machine, and on its top is securely fixed a turned steel ring, on which travel eight cast-steel rollers, 5.5 inches diameter. The rollers support a cast-iron table, on which are fixed three tiers of lenses, with six panels in each tier. Each panel is 3 feet 8.5 inches wide by 4 feet 1.25 inch high, consisting of a central lens and eleven rings, or twenty-three elements in each panel, having a focal distance of 920 mm. They were made in Paris by Messrs. Barbier and Fenestre.
The rotating machine is driven by weights, having a fall of 40 feet; about 7 cwts. is required, which travels in a recess formed in the wall of the tower. In addition to revolving the lenses, the machine causes the gas valves to open and close at the intervals of time corresponding with the length of the flashes and eclipses. It is also arranged to work an occulting apparatus in connection with au oil lamp, which is kept in readiness for use if the gas supply at any time should fail.
Fog Signal. —The fog signal is in duplicate, so that should one be under repair the other would be available for use when required. Each signal consists of an air compressor worked by a Crossley's 8-H.P. Otto silent gas-engine; a wrought-iron receiver, capable of storing 110 cubic feet of air; two sirens, one for a high note and the other for a low; and a copper trumpet. The character of the signal is a blast of four seconds' duration on the low note, followed after a silence of twelve seconds by a second blast of four seconds on the high note, succeeded by a silence of one hundred seconds.
The sirens are supplied with air at a pressure of 40 lbs. per square inch, and when working are driven by the engine at a speed of 1,200 revolutions per minute. The high-note siren has thirty-two ports of 1.25 inch by 0.10 inch, and the low-note fourteen of 1.25 inch by 0.20 inch; thus giving 640 vibrations per second for the former, and 280 for the latter. The valves for supplying the compressed air to the sirens at the proper intervals and during the time necessary for each blast are worked automatically from the engine.
Gas Supply. —To meet the irregular consumption of gas owing to the variable duration of fog, the retort bench is provided with seven retorts, namely: two single settings, one double, and one treble setting. After three years' experience of the station, a single retort has been found to be sufficient, excepting on one occasion. The average consumption of gas is 525,173 cubic feet per annum.
Cost. —The amounts of the several contracts were:—buildings on island, £5,950; dwellings on shore, £3,200; lantern, optical apparatus, gas plant, and fog signal, £7,655; total, £16,805. The total cost, including purchase of Mew Island, superintendence, and legal expenses, was £19,008. Messrs. Dixon and Co. of Belfast were the contractors for the buildings on the island; Messrs. Edmundson and Co. of Dublin for the lantern, optical apparatus, gas plant, and fog signal; and Mr. H. Fulton of Belfast for the shore station. The work was commenced in September 1882, and the light exhibited on lot November 1884.