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Science / Mechanical Exhibits



pump mech-anism




Chaffcutter mechanism details


Before the age of steam, animal, wind and water power were extremely important in the rural and industrial economy.

There are several exhibits at the museum showing different types of motive power, from simple machines where the prime mover was a man or a horse or other animal to the Water Mill which harnessed the power of flowing water and the Pevensey Windpump which harnessed the power of the wind..

The wind powered pump is a rare example of a once common machine.  The mechanism shows the use of bevel gears to transmit power through angles.

Animal power can be seen in five exhibits at the Museum. Two of them are buildings dedicated to raising water - the horse whim from West Kingsdown [8] with a horizontal wheel, and the Catherington treadwheel house [23] with a vertical wheel.  Another building dedicated to an animal-powered machine is the pugmill house [33] from the Redford brickyard.in which clay was prepared for brick making. Nearby is a horse "gin" which was used for pumping water from a well. At the end of the Watersfield stable is another wheel, which drives a chaff cutter inside the building.  Man power was used to wind the crane in the timber yard.

                 The Catherington treadwheel [23].                     Redford Pugmill House [33]

Two other exhibits show horse wheels manufactured in cast iron, which were widely used in the 19th century. Near the Redford building is a typical example, the horse gin from Patching, a ground-level wheel which raised water from a well by driving a pump. Another wheel has been installed at the end of the Watersfield stable [40] to drive a chaff cutter inside the building.

Lurgashall Mill [41] is an impressive monument to the traditional use of water power for grinding corn, and the Pevensey windpump [42] shows the vital importance of wind power in the draining and maintenance of land.

See also Lurgashall Mill, the Windpump  and the Treadwheel

Suggested Topics

Possible links to Unit 2E and 6E Forces in action.  
A worksheet based on the treadwheel investigates radius, diameter and circumference and volume calculations Click to view and/or print
A worksheet investigates the structure of the windpump and gearing ratios. Click to view and/or print

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