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Subject: "Willet Bruce steam whistle control" Previous topic | Next topic
Ralph CurrellFri Oct-17-08 08:17 PM
Member since Mar 31st 2007
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#29006, "Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
Fri Oct-17-08 08:29 PMby Ralph Currell

          

Hi all,

I ran across this article in a 1909 edition of Marine Engineer and Naval Architect magazine. The equipment is described in Titanic: The Ship Magnificent, but I'm hoping this may contain a few new details. The attached zip file contains the text of the article.



http://www.titanic-model.com/dc/user_files/6977.zip

Regards,
Ralph

Attachment #1, (jpg file)
Attachment #2, (jpg file)
Attachment #3, (jpg file)
Attachment #4, (jpg file)
Attachment #5, (zip file)

  

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Replies to this topic
RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Scott Andrews, Oct 17th 2008, #1
RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, SteveHall, Oct 18th 2008, #2
      RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Ralph Currell, Oct 18th 2008, #3
           RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Scott Andrews, Oct 19th 2008, #4
                RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Ralph Currell, Oct 20th 2008, #5
                     RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Scott Andrews, Oct 20th 2008, #6
                          RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Ralph Currell, Oct 21st 2008, #7
                               RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Scott Andrews, Oct 21st 2008, #8
                                    RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Paul_Lee, Oct 21st 2008, #9
                                         RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Scott Andrews, Oct 21st 2008, #10
                                              RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Ralph Currell, Jan 15th 2018, #11
                                                   RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Scott Andrews, Jan 19th 2018, #12
                                                        RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control, Ralph Currell, Jan 21st 2018, #13

Scott AndrewsFri Oct-17-08 11:12 PM
Member since Sep 18th 2004
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#29008, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

Ralph,

Thank you very much for posting this article. I've seen figures 1 and 2 before, as they were used in ads for the apparatus, but this is the first time I've seen the next two figures, which clearly illustrate the "guts" of the machine.

Regards,
Scott Andrews
TRMA Trustee

  

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SteveHallSat Oct-18-08 09:18 AM
Member since Jun 10th 2007
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#29010, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 1


          

Ralph, nice find.
The more we find out, the more will know.

Steve
---------->

  

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Ralph CurrellSat Oct-18-08 03:06 PM
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#29012, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 2


          

Glad you guys found it interesting. Would I be correct in assuming the Olympic-class ships had two sets of this equipment (one for each of the operational whistles)?

Regards,
Ralph

  

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Scott AndrewsSun Oct-19-08 02:06 PM
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#29014, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 3


  

          

Ralph,

To the best of my knowledge, only one set of whistles was equipped with the timing apparatus; that was the typical arrangement on most ships having more than one set of whistles. The other would definitely have had the same solenoid-operated valve as used with the Willett-Bruce apparatus -- minus the timer -- and one or both whistles would have been equipped with an old-fashioned wire lanyard to the valve as an emergency back-up. The valve end of the lanyard is visible in those pictures, attached to the counterweighted end of the operating lever.

Regards,
Scott Andrews
TRMA Trustee

  

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Ralph CurrellMon Oct-20-08 02:50 PM
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#29024, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 4


          

Scott,

That makes sense. Thanks for the explanation.

Regards,
Ralph

  

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Scott AndrewsMon Oct-20-08 07:11 PM
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#29026, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 5


  

          

Ralph,

It's a shame they didn't show pictures of the control switches in that article. It would be interesting to see what difference, if any, had been made in form or appearance within the two- to three-year period between when this was written and when the apparatus was fitted aboard the Olympic and Titanic.

Regards,
Scott Andrews
TRMA Trustee

  

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Ralph CurrellTue Oct-21-08 09:38 AM
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#29031, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 6


          

Scott,

I suppose the photo of the switches on pg 538 of TTSM is a good representation. Looking at that photo again, although it's somewhat blurred it seems to me both switches have the setting 'Time Control' on the side nearest the camera. So were there perhaps two timing motors installed on that particular ship?

Regards,
Ralph

  

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Scott AndrewsTue Oct-21-08 10:28 AM
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#29032, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 7


  

          

Ralph,

To me that indicates one of two possibilities -- either there were two set of apparatus, which would be unusual by what I have seen of other installations, or perhaps this is a more advanced version of the 1909 timer -- maybe one switch to set the duration of minutes or seconds between blasts, and a second to adjust the duration of the blast itself.

There were clearly other variations of these controls as borne out by a Google search of "Willet-Bruce." The search failed to find anything additional on this particular apparatus, but it did get a hit on a site selling old ship fittings which had for sale a Chadburn's whistle control switch with the Willett-Bruce name marked on it. This switch was simply marked "ON" and "OFF" which, to me, means that either the device in this case had only one fixed setting, or this was the momentary manual switch for sounding the whistle(s). At any rate, it does show that different configurations existed, and that until Smith Hyson acquired the sole rights to the Willett-Bruce apparatus in the early 1920's, W. J. Willett-Bruce or Downie & Co. were selling licenses to Chadburn's and probably others, in addition to selling the complete apparatus exclusively through Downie's.

Regards,
Scott Andrews
TRMA Trustee

  

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Paul_LeeTue Oct-21-08 10:39 AM
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#29033, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 8


          

Where were the controls situated on the Titanic? I remember reading the Eaton and Haas account of their visit to the wreck site in "Triumph and Tragedy" and they reported seeing among the wreckage of the bridge wing cabs, some controls labelled for timing.

--
http://www.paullee.com/titanic

  

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Scott AndrewsTue Oct-21-08 07:00 PM
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#29038, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 9


  

          

Paul,

There were three sets of whistle control switches located on the navigating bridge -- one set located on the ship's centerline on the forward bulkhead within the navigating bridge shelter, and one set located along the inboard edge of the forward bulkhead of each wing cab.

Regards,
Scott Andrews
TRMA Trustee

  

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Ralph CurrellMon Jan-15-18 05:44 PM
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#55738, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 10


          

Hi all,

I know this discussion is almost ten years old, but it seems to be the logical place to put this. I found a catalogue illustration of one of the whistle controls, showing the lettering for each of the three positions: 'Time Control', 'Silent' and 'Signal Control'.



Regards,
Ralph

Attachment #1, (jpg file)

  

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Scott AndrewsFri Jan-19-18 05:18 PM
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#55745, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 11


  

          

Excellent image!

Regards,
Scott Andrews
TRMA Trustee

  

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Ralph CurrellSun Jan-21-18 09:11 AM
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#55749, "RE: Willet Bruce steam whistle control"
In response to Reply # 12


          

Hi Scott,

Thanks. This came from the 'McNab Encyclopaedia of Marine Appliances', which can be viewed online at https://hdl.handle.net/2027/chi.087235042. The whistle control description begins on page 33.

This book is worth browsing for anyone interested in steamship fittings and "gadgets". Although an American company, McNab offered a number of products by British manufacturers.

Regards,
Ralph

  

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