Glen & Ross
Glen & Ross, Greenhead Engine Works.—
The well-known and representative house of Messrs. Glen & Ross, controlling the Greenhead Engine Works, has, during the past thirty years, achieved an exceptional eminence of reputation in a branch of mechanical engineering of the highest importance in its relation to modern metallic industries — the manufacture of steam hammers.
Messrs. Glen & Ross commenced operations, at their present premises and under their present firm title, upwards of thirty years ago, engaging at first in engineering work of a general character. Since 1857, however, they have devoted their attention principally to the manufacture of Rigby’s Patent Steam Hammers, a speciality which has, in their capable hands, proved to be of the first order of commercial no less than of industrial value.
The Rigby hammer in its original form was the invention of Mr. William Rigby, of Parkhead Forge, Glasgow, who, in 1854, effected an improvement upon the design of the Nasmyth hammer, and subsequently disposed of the whole of his patent rights to the firm under notice. Messrs. Glen & Ross in turn improved upon Mr. Rigby’s apparatus by introducing an equilibrium valve, the effect of which was to greatly increase the entire effective capacity of the hammer, enhance the force of the blow delivered, and bring the whole machine under perfect and easy operative control. They next designed and introduced hammers on single box columns, instead of the usual double framing. With these two great improvements the Rigby hammer at once became a favourite, and no sooner had the original patent expired than numerous attempts were made to produce apparatus of a similar kind, embodying the improvements Messrs. Glen & Ross had been at such labour and expense to perfect. The firm have, however, protected themselves from this infringement of their just rights in the fruits of their enterprise by registering their trade-mark, “Rigby’s Patent”, under the provisions of the Trade-Marks Registration Act. Only the genuine article as manufactured by them can therefore lawfully bear those words.
The Rigby’s Patent Steam Hammers cannot be adequately described in the present sketch without the aid of illustrations. They represent, however, it may safely be affirmed, one of the most perfect developments of the direct-acting steam hammer extant, and their advantages maybe summed up briefly as, limited space required for erection, simplicity and substantial nature of construction, and consequent small liability to derangement. The piston and piston-rod (forming the hammer) are of malleable iron in one piece, and the other parts are few in number, and of an equally substantial nature. The hammers work with great rapidity at a steam pressure of thirty pounds, and the balance piston-valve is so arranged that full pressure can be admitted on the upper side of the piston at pleasure, thereby greatly increasing the power. Every class of work to which a steam hammer can be applied has been, and is being, executed in the most effectual manner by Rigby’s Patent Steam Hammer.
Upwards of a thousand are now in use in all parts of the world ; and Messrs. Glen & Ross show testimonials from most of the greatest industrial concerns of the United Kingdom, India, the colonies, South America, and elsewhere, all affirming the full satisfaction given by the apparatus in its every form and application. The hammers have been supplied up to thirteen tons in actual weight of piston, piston rod, and face. At the Calcutta Exhibition, 1883-84, and at the Edinburgh Exhibition, 1886, the Rigby’s Patent Steam Hammers exhibited by this firm won the highest awards, a first-class certificate and silver medal, and have always received the highest award wherever exhibited. The firm are also exhibiting at the Glasgow International Exhibition of the present year (1888), and will doubtless achieve an equal degree of success upon the great and admitted merits of their speciality.
The Greenhead works are extensive, and admirably adapted to the department of manufacture engaged in. They comprise a smithy, turning shop, pattern shop, and fitting shop, each fully equipped with mechanical appliances of the most effective kind, and each covering a ground area of about 100 feet by 40 feet. The staff of hands employed is numerous and efficient, and the entire industry is conducted with a degree of vigorous energy which maintains it at a productive level adequate to the meeting of the large demands made upon it by the constantly increasing home and export trade controlled.
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