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rivett608
02-23-2011, 12:48 AM
I don't often post on this site because I seem to keep pretty busy elsewhere..... As some of you know I tend to collect old and historic machinist tools..... I see there is another copy in the works here of a little hand vise I have..... anyway I have just added one of the most important pieces to my collection. A PALMER micrometer, Palmer is the inventor in 1848 of the micrometer as we know it.... these are very rare! I have posted it and more new information than has been known in over a hundred years on Palmer on the PM. Enjoy.

http://www.practicalmachinist.com/vb/antique-machinery-history/exceptionally-rare-historically-import-micrometer-palmer-220198/

Enjoyed meeting a bunch of you at Cabin Fever!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v341/rivett608/DSCN8055_2.jpg

interrupted_cut
02-23-2011, 02:32 AM
That is a very neat tool. On the subject of historic measuring tools, one of my coworkers spent some time abroad about 10 years ago running tests on a large gas turbine engine at the National Gas Turbine Test Establisment in Pyestock, England . He was there over a period of 2 years, and when he left, in honor of his dedicated and accurate work, the staff presented him with an inscribed plaque with a very old B & S 1" micrometer mounted to it . Upon closer examination, he discovered the micrometer was engraved with "PJL #1", for Power Jets Limited, the company that Frank Whittle set up in 1936 to develop the first successful jet engine. I can't even imagine the history that a tool like that was witness to.

Tony Ennis
02-23-2011, 08:56 AM
That's a very neat thing!

tmc_31
02-23-2011, 08:57 AM
rivett608,

I read your thread on PM about the Palmer Mic. Very interesting, thank you for sharing!! I appreciate the time and effort it has taken you to research and present this information.

Tim

Circlip
02-23-2011, 09:09 AM
It is however pointed out that William Gascoine of Middleton near Leeds had a micrometer in the 1600's. Problem with any measuring device (as the Chinese electronicists have found out) is repeatability of accuracy and a standardised screw thread system was needed.

If the Horology records are traced back, there probably were many examples of "Mics" used in that trade as the term "Ligne" crops up.

Regards Ian.

gwilson
02-23-2011, 10:24 AM
A ligne is a

French measurement. Not sure what you are trying to say. I am currently restoring a case for a folding Tailor's rule,which is graduated in Lignes,18th.C..

jugs
02-23-2011, 10:38 AM
I don't often post on this site because I seem to keep pretty busy elsewhere..... As some of you know I tend to collect old and historic machinist tools..... I see there is another copy in the works here of a little hand vise I have..... anyway I have just added one of the most important pieces to my collection. A PALMER micrometer, Palmer is the inventor in 1848 of the micrometer as we know it.... these are very rare! I have posted it and more new information than has been known in over a hundred years on Palmer on the PM. Enjoy.

http://www.practicalmachinist.com/vb/antique-machinery-history/exceptionally-rare-historically-import-micrometer-palmer-220198/

Enjoyed meeting a bunch of you at Cabin Fever!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v341/rivett608/DSCN8055_2.jpg


Nice find !!! I'm green with envy :D

Some good info here -> http://www.mitutoyo.com/pdf/History_of_Micro.pdf

john
:)

rivett608
02-23-2011, 11:03 AM
Thanks John

I had not seen that before..... I added the link to the thread.

jugs
02-23-2011, 12:07 PM
Thanks John

I had not seen that before..... I added the link to the thread.

My pleasure.

john
:)

lazlo
02-23-2011, 04:14 PM
It is however pointed out that William Gascoine of Middleton near Leeds had a micrometer in the 1600's.

Gascoigne invented the concept of measuring distances with a screw thread, but if you look at Robert Hooke's drawing, it's a very large device mounted on a tripod, and bears little resemblance to a modern micrometer:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/65/Gascoigne%27s_micrometer_as_drawn_by_Robert_Hooke_ .JPG

Gascoigne was an Astronomer and he used his device to measure the angular seperation between stars.

Circlip
02-23-2011, 04:25 PM
Ligne is also used as a measure in horology.

Gascoines apparatus measured the relative distance between two points?

And a micrometer measures?

Regards Ian.

loose nut
02-23-2011, 07:04 PM
It is however pointed out that William Gascoine of Middleton near Leeds had a micrometer in the 1600's.
Regards Ian.

He did say "micrometers as we know them", previous types where somewhat different and mostly bench type mics.

oil mac
02-23-2011, 07:30 PM
The first succesful micrometer designed for the engineering industry, was designed by the great Scottish engineer James Watt

sasquatch
02-23-2011, 08:20 PM
Rivett, thanks for posting this most interesting and educational topic!!!

Your,e postings are always very interesting, and i,m sure all of us here look forward to anymore you have in future.

Oldbrock
02-23-2011, 08:45 PM
I read somewhere many years ago that Watt's piston- cylinder fit was so close you couldn't even get a shilling into the clearance. Peter

fciron
02-23-2011, 10:30 PM
OldBrock, that was a 'worn shilling' which they felt was a compliment to Wilkinson's boring machine. ;)

Gascoine's tool was called a micrometer and did use threads, but it moved the cross hairs of a telescope to determine the angular difference between astronomical objects. A much different activity.

I just pawed through a reprint of Diderot's Encyclopedia volume on Horology and did not see any thread based measuring instruments. (But I did learn how to make fusee chain.) Palmer actually got his patent 2 years before Diderot started his work. They worked on the encyclopedia for over 20 years, so I'm surprised I haven't been able to find a "palmer" in it.

rivett608
02-23-2011, 11:37 PM
You'll need to double check your dates...."2 years before Diderot started his work."......... Palmer did this about 98 years after Diderot started.... he started about 1750.

For those that don't know Diderot is a fantastic set of books, something like 11 volumes of plates with about 4500 plus another 20 some volumes of text...... my shop walls are covered with framed Diderot prints! I am inspired every day by them.

fciron
02-24-2011, 12:08 AM
doh! :eek:

I just got out of bed to correct that! I was almost asleep and then it hit me. I think I am having severe brain melt this evening. Century-schemtury. :o

I did find a set of dividers that appears to have a dial on the end of the fine adjustment screw in plate III of mathematical instruments. Someone seems to have been interested in partial revolutions of a screw as it related to length 98 years before Palmer. Although it is, by no stretch of the imagination, a micrometer.

lazlo
02-24-2011, 12:17 AM
The first succesful micrometer designed for the engineering industry, was designed by the great Scottish engineer James Watt

These three gentlemen are often listed as the creators of the "first micrometer": Gascoigne, Watt, and Maudslay. From looking at the 3 devices, Maudslay's benchtop ‘Lord Chancellor’ micrometer is the first device that resembles what we use today, whether handheld or benchtop.

Watt's device sounds highly derivative of Gascoigne's: there was a pair of crosshairs that met in the center at 0. As you turned the screw, the two reticules moved to opposite ends of the screw, and you sited the crosshairs on the outer diameter of the star, planet, landmark that you wanted to measure.

From the Scottish Science Hall of Fame:

http://digital.nls.uk/scientists/biographies/james-watt/discoveries.html#micrometer


Watt's micrometer, designed between 1770 and 1771, was what we would now call a 'rangefinder'. It was used for measuring distances, and was essential for his canal surveying work.

Adapted from a telescope, with adjustable cross-hairs in the eye-piece, it was particularly useful for measuring distances between hills or across water.

The most common way of measuring such distances in Watt's day was by laying a chain on the ground, and calculating the number of chains needed to cover the distance.

Watt produced varying designs of micrometers, but most remained as models only.

Nowadays we use the word 'micrometer' for an instrument to measure tiny objects. It is a completely different device from Watt's. The usual design looks like a question mark, with jaws that open and close, and a cylindrical turning device which displays the necessary measurements.


This is the picture Rivet posted of Watts micrometer:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v341/rivett608/wattmicrometer.jpg

Now look at Maudslay's bench micrometer -- very much like a modern bench micrometer, or a bore gage setter:

http://www.ssplprints.com/lowres/43/main/13/92452.jpg

Also interesting -- Gascoigne's and Watt's "micrometers" were apparently dimensionless -- there were arbitrary tick marks along the screw threads, and the thread pitch doesn't seem to match any common measurement. From the description I read, you would calibrate the distances between the two cross-hairs on a know length reference (the aforementioned length of chain).

Maudslay's actually used an Imperial screw with 100 threads per inch, and was direct reading.

Whitworth (of three plate scraping fame) was a student at Maudslay's shop, and left to create a benchtop micrometer that measured to a microinch (!).

rivett608
02-24-2011, 02:02 AM
"I did find a set of dividers that appears to have a dial on the end of the fine adjustment screw in plate III of mathematical instruments..." I really like that plate.... it hangs right in front of my workbench.... I also have one signed Edward Nairne, London..... circa 1750...... neat instrument!

That Watt micrometer thing I have held in my hand.... that is when it was in storage and I took that photo........ someday I'll finish researching that and Maudslay's too.... a lot more to be learned about these.

fciron
02-24-2011, 02:10 AM
I'm glad I'm on the right track, even if in the wrong century. :rolleyes:

I've been following the historical discussion here and on PM with great interest. I still have my History of Science notes from college. I'm going to dig them out and figure out which books I should be looking in.