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Welcome to Pinball Intrigue, where I indulge my fascination with the silver ball. Here you will find posts regarding my pinball experiences, pinball machine repairs and mods, a virtual pinball build, and links to other pinball sites.

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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Another Steampunk Item

Picked up another item for the Steampunk Pinball Machine...a beautiful brass Altitude Gauge made by Ashcroft Valve Company for The Kellogg-McCrum-Howell Company. Ashton Valve was founded in Boston in 1872 and was the leading manufacturer of steam gauges.

In Uniontown, Pennsylvania, in 1897, The Uniontown Radiator Company was sold to Evans Linn, and then to Lloyd McCrumb as Acme Radiator. In 1904 it became The Kellogg-McCrum-Howell Company. Mr. Kellogg retired in 1906 and the name of the company changed yet again, this time to McCrumb, Howell, and Company. That places the date of this gauge between 1904 and 1906!

The altitude gauge was used to show the amount of water in the house tank. It was most commonly used in electricity-generating steam plants, in railroad steam locomotives, and also in steam ships (the Titanic was one such ship).

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Update on The Steampunk "Time Machine" Pinball Cabinet

Progress has been slow for a couple of reasons: it's way too cold in the shop to work out there (it's not heated), and I my back has been giving me a lot of trouble.

I have picked up a few more materials:

First up is this gorgeous cherry veneer that I picked up at Woodcrafters in Portland. This will be used on the front and sides of the cabinet, as well as the sides of the backbox. I had planned on getting mahogany, but the cherry had such a fantastic grain, I couldn't pass it up. It will most likely be stained a deep, rich red in color.

Next is this Model T era master vibrator buzz coil. Manufactured by the New York Coil Company, they were used to replace multiple vibrator coils, reducing coil maintenance by 75%. The master vibrator goes between the coil box and the power source, usually a battery, and closed the points on the ignition coil. Master vibrators were used in other devices, such as radios, bu their use in the Model T is probably their most well-known application. Most of these are pretty beat up due to their age, but this one is in amazing condition. I'm not sure how to incorporate this into the design yet...I'll have to come up with some sketches and post those soon.