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11-03-2008, 09:08 AM #1
O.T. Watts Flyball governor plans wanted
I am looking for a dimensioned drawing of a flyball governor. I have found photos on the internet of many on steam engines but not with dimensions. I plan to use this on a starter mechanism on my replica of a 1906 Model B Straight Dash Oldsmobile. The more ornate the design the better. I dont have any steam engines in my area to copy either.
Last edited by Bob F; 11-03-2008 at 09:10 AM. Reason: forgot to mark it as off topic
11-03-2008, 12:00 PM #2
What part will a governor play in the starter mechanism? Just curious, and it sounds interesting.
11-03-2008, 02:04 PM #3
I made this little governor about 40 years ago and I will see if I still have the plans. It is 5.25" tall, not including the steam chest. It is part of a 2" to the foot scale model of a Case steam traction engine. I bought the castings for just the governor and steam chest, with two covers. I wanted to get a taste of what it would be like to build the whole thing with the limited machine tools I had then. It has made a good paperweight/dust collector. It is too small to make a table lamp. The second picture is a lamp I made from a full size governor. Anyway, I will see if I can find the drawings for the little one.
11-03-2008, 02:07 PM #4
Watts Fly ball governor
On the front of my car will be a engine hand crank start lever. With the key in the on position and turning the crank approx. 30 rpm, the vertical shaft of the Watts governor will turn about 700 rpm and will cause the weights to lift as they are spinning. The bottom sleeve on the governor will tift up a lever and press a micro switch which will engage the coil of the starter relay. This way it will look like the engine is being cranked started by hand. I would post a pic of the car but it doesn't seem to work for me.
11-03-2008, 02:32 PM #5
That's great, 'cause I've been thinking about building a flywheel driven by an electric starter motor and using a similar mechanism to turn the motor on/off to keep it running at a nearly constant speed.
11-03-2008, 02:52 PM #6
The "Kenwood Chef" food mixer(circa 1960) used a system like this to give a variable speed. Its years since I fixed one but it was something like 3 weights on dished sprung arms fixed to an extension of the motor shaft. There was then another set of dished springs from them to a disc that is centred on the motor shaft which made contact with a carbon brush at its centre. As the motor speeded up the weights went out and the arms moved towards the motor so did the disc, so the brush lifted of the disc and the motor lost its supply. There were a lot of interferrence suppresion components!
11-03-2008, 03:32 PM #7
I am a little confused by your description of what you want regarding "ornate."
Presumably you want it to appear that you are hand cranking the motor, yes? But in reality you are just activating a switch for the starter motor solenoid that will do the real work of starting the motor. If such is the case, why have an "ornate" Watts governor? Wouldn't a more pedestrian looking device accomplish the same thing?
On older style dial telephones was a very simple and reliable centrifugal clutch. It might be simple to rig such a mechanism such that when the RPM got high enough it would transmit enough torque to activate a microswitch by simply extending a lever from the clutch housing to press on the switch contact button. Simple, cheap, and (almost) off-the-shelf. Depending how it is connected to the engine you might need to add a one-way clutch so that once the engine catches it doesn't smoke the centrifugal clutch.
Just a thought.
11-04-2008, 01:19 AM #8
11-04-2008, 08:41 AM #9
I guess my car is considered a Brass Era Car and the more elaborate and glitsy they were the better. If I can make a fancy governor that spins and looks cool , that makes the car more interresting.
I doubt most people looking at the car would even know what a governor is .So as I turn the crank and the governor spins that just adds a bit of mechanical wizardry.
Just like the boy in this years little league world series when asked why he attempted to catch the ball when it looked clearly out of his range. He said he knew there was a slim possibility he could catch it and if he didn't he knew he would look cool trying.
That being said, I have tried to keep my car from only looking functional. I am trying to make it look cool in the process also.
I have found a couple of pics that I might be able to scale dimensions from.
11-04-2008, 10:02 AM #10
Why not just actually crank the car to start it?
11-04-2008, 10:05 AM #11
My recollection of those old mixer motors and similar mechanisms is that they often shunted a resistor into the circuit, rather than interrupting the current to the motor, and this could be difficult to duplicate with a starter motor.
But if what you need is simply to engage the starter motor when the crank is turned at a certain speed, I think a governor might work if it is designed to operate a lever or rod to a switch with a detent, and with some slack in the return direction of the lever. What would happen then is that the starter would operate continuously within a preset RPM range, rather than flicking on and off at a preset speed. Many tractor engine governors use adjustable spring stops on the rod to allow for some differential.
Somewhere in my vast collection of useless things of interest, I believe I have a flyball governor, which is not at all brassy and elegant (in fact, it's a rather coarse and cheap one, made for some internal combustion application), but it might be of about the right size and configuration. I'll see if I can dig it out in the next few days, and get pictures and dimensions. It might make a good pattern.
11-04-2008, 11:14 AM #12
My replica of a 1906 straight dash oldsmobile Model B. the orig car had only one bench seat instead of the two mine has.
Last edited by Bob F; 11-04-2008 at 10:29 PM. Reason: spelling
11-04-2008, 11:50 AM #13
Bob, your Olds is a beauty! Good job!
11-04-2008, 02:04 PM #14
Aw heck, a nice job like that, doesn't need a flyball
Just put a crank on the front and do it that way.
11-04-2008, 02:14 PM #15
The food mixer governor, I was thinking of was much simpler, a boss for the motor shaft, two springy spiders and three weights.
11-04-2008, 02:42 PM #16
Jim , I can't do that. I have invisioned every part of the car since I started it 2-1/2 years ago. I have just finished upgrading the generator to support two 12 volt d.c. heater blankets for upcoming parades near Thanksgiving and Christmas. I am also designing a folding bow top similar to those used on the Ford Touring car of 1920 & tufted seats.
11-04-2008, 05:34 PM #17
Here's a dead simple flyball governor. This one is made of cast iron, and rather coarsely finished, but I'm guessing the dimensions would be about right. The main shaft is hollow, and a second shaft with a ring sits inside it. Tabs on the two weights push the ring outward, along with its shaft, and this pushes on the lever. Tension of the spring on the lever sets sensitivity.
If you think this one would serve either as a model or the thing itself, let me know and I'll contribute it to your project for postage cost.
Last edited by bruto; 11-04-2008 at 05:35 PM. Reason: foergot the picture!
11-04-2008, 07:42 PM #18
Bob,what wheels did you use for your car? One thing that has put me off of making an early type car is getting decent spoked wheels for it. I can't (haven't put a lot of effort into it) find spoked wheels with large enough diameter to be realistic.
11-04-2008, 08:14 PM #19
I pulled out the drawing for the 2 inch scale model Case steam governor by Charles V. Arnold (Tiny Power). It is a single sheet, 25.5 x 22 inches. I can copy it on eight letter size pages. Let me know if you want a copy.
11-04-2008, 09:25 PM #20