Hannay’s Patents Company
Hannay’s Patents Company, Limited, 67, Great Clyde Street.—
It is difficult to find in the annals of commercial enterprise a parallel instance to the success which has attended the introduction of the well-known patents of Mr. J. B. Hannay, F.R.S.E., F.C.S., F.I.C., by the company known as the Hannay’s Patents Company, Limited. The highly utilitarian character of these inventions at once recommends them to public notice.
The company have extensive works at Sword Street and Possilpark, which are replete with all the best and most recently improved machinery and appliances, and employ in the various departments upwards of sixty workmen. The mercantile part of the business is conducted in a handsome suite of well-appointed offices, comprising general office, counting-house, board and private rooms, a large and efficient staff of clerks and assistants being constantly employed.
At the Sword Street Works the company have up till now manufactured their well-known “Lucigen”, the most powerful artificial light invented, two thousand five hundred candle power actual, for from two pence to three pence per hour. The “Lucigen ” has now replaced the electric light in some of the largest engineering works in the world. The light is produced by burning creosote oil, tar oil, crude petroleum, or other heavy hydrocarbons by means of compressed air in a special form of lamp termed the “Lucigen”. Compared light for light, the “Lucigen” is ten times more economical than gas, and twenty times cheaper than electric light. The company also supply the necessary apparatus for the Lucigen, including specially designed air compressors of various forms and sizes to be wrought by steam belt or hand-power. The success of the “Lucigen” has been and still is quite unprecedented, and their application almost universal.
In addition to the multifarious forms of the Lucigen, the manufacture has been carried out at these works of Hannay’s Pyrigen oil furnaces for heating metals of all kinds, in which the powerful heat obtained by Hannay’s method of burning oil is adapted to a great variety of purposes, such as bolt and rivet making, rivet heating, and for the heating of angle-iron plates, tyres, &c. The Pyrigen has also been adapted with marked success to the melting of brass, copper, and other metals used in the arts, a great saving being effected not only in the matter of time but in the greater purity of the metals when fused in these furnaces. So extensive have the businesses of the Lucigen and Pyrigen become, that it was found necessary to have a separate organisation for dealing with them in an effectual way, and the Lucigen Light Company, Limited, has recently been incorporated in London for this purpose.
At the Caledonia Works, Possilpark, Hannay’s Patents Company manufacture in large quantities their new white-lead, the process for which has been invented by Mr. Hannay. This bids fair to be the most important invention of the whole group. By it the raw material — i.e. galena — is placed in a furnace with coke, and at one operation converted into a beautiful white-lead, which is greatly superior to the ordinary white-lead in that it withstands the action of deleterious fumes, salt water, and other deteriorating influences, in a way which makes it a really permanent white, whereas the old white-lead is extremely sensitive to all these discolouring influences. Besides this, the new white is extremely fine, being a condensed vapour, so that it spreads under the brush like a varnish, and having been prepared at a white heat it is a very stable body. Taking only days to prepare the finished white, instead of months by the old method, the great economy of this new process is sure to secure its extensive adoption as a manufacturing process. Further, the product being entirely non-poisonous, the general adoption of Mr. Hannay’s process would result in the immense advantage of doing away with the deadly evils of the present manufacture and handling of the old white-lead. An exceptionally fine variety of the new white, wherein zinc is combined with the lead, to which Mr. Hannay has given the name of marine white, is largely used by the Admiralty, and the leading railway companies, shipbuilders, shipowners, engineers, &c., for special purposes where great beauty of colour and permanency are required.
In conjunction with the white-lead, the company manufacture enamels, and paints, and colours of every description. They also manufacture in large quantities Hannay’s Patent Electroid Antifouling Compositions, which have been used with success on the finest steamships afloat. Here also is manufactured Hannay’s well-known Patent “Electrogen” for preventing corrosion and incrustation in steam boilers. This invention provides a simple and effectual natural protection to the boiler against “pitting” and every other form of internal decay. The Electrogens have now been in use for over six years, and have been applied to many thousands of boilers in the mercantile marine of this country and abroad with the greatest success. They are used in the French, German, and other navies, and by the most important shipping companies in the world.
Amongst the other patents which this company has developed is the Bathymeter, invented by Mr. Hannay for taking flying soundings at sea, a simple piece of mechanism based on the pressure of the water on the place where the Bathymeter falls. Mr. Hannay’s process for dealing with refractory gold ores, such as tellurides, has proved so successful that a company is in course of formation to work it on a large scale.
It will thus be seen that one of the objects of Hannay’s Patents Company is to bring Mr. Hannay’s inventions to such a state of success that they can be hived off into separate organisations. The company is thoroughly organised for developing and working the inventions. The direction of the scientific staff, and the carrying out of the practical processes, are all under the personal care of Mr. Hannay himself, a gentleman whose ability and attainments are well-known in the scientific world, and whose influential position in mercantile circles has for many years been directed towards the progress and development of the commerce and industries of Glasgow and the surrounding district.
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