Friday, 17 September 2010

Moving the RA Lister Motor in the Shearing Shed

When we were shearing the weaner lambs at the end of March it became apparent that it would be necessary for us move the old R A Lister petrol engine that used to power the old overhead gear to allow sufficient room for the large fleeces when we shear the older ewes.
Given we are now only a month or two off shearing the ewes I'd been mulling over the best way to move the motor and had been considering hiring some form of heavy lifting device. I then recalled a conversation I'd had a few years ago with David Byrne who owns and runs the Tasmania-based business Solutions for Sustainable Living. During that discussion David mentioned how he at one point was installing and removing fuel (wood) stoves on his own without using any heavy machinery. Basically the technique involved the use of steel pipes (as rollers), ramps and pulleys. Off the back of this knowledge we decided to give it a go with our old motor. Yes ... whilst it did take us quite a while due to lack of experience we found the whole process simple, safe and effective.
The accompanying photo shows the motor after we'd managed to move it from the concrete base it used to be on down a timber ramp and across some steel plating. Since then I've moved the motor to another part of the shed where I suspect it will stay for quite a while.
Moving the motor has had another benefit in that we found the old specification plates that were not previously visible. The single cylinder petrol motor was manufactured by R A Lister & Co Ltd, Dursley, United Kingdom. The engine number is 77599 / Spec 83 J. It is rated at 4 1/2 horse power and runs at 525 revolutions per minute. We are most curious to ascertain the year of manufacture. A bloke who works at Lister Petter Limited in the UK thinks it may have been manufactured in the 1920's but is not sure. We'll keep researching and see what we come up with.
Getting back to the main intent of this post ... the technique we used to move the motor has made us think of possibly how the Egyptians might have constructed the pyramids. Slow and steady but very effective.


Motormaniac said...

Phillip, Just had a look in my Lister database, I do not have the exact data, but this Serial & spec number is either a late 1928 or early 1929 model!
Best Regards,

Phillip Diprose said...

Thanks Reint. Fantastic to now have a more accurate time period.