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British Atchinson Electro

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This picture is taken from Worrall looking over to the Middlewood area.

The chimneys belonged to the British Atchinson Electro although I

think this was American.

It has been stood empty for quite a while now, I can't wait to see

the chimneys being demolished.

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This picture is taken from Worrall looking over to the Middlewood area.

The chimneys belonged to the British Atchinson Electro although I

think this was American.

It has been stood empty for quite a while now, I can't wait to see

the chimneys being demolished.

I don't know exactly when, but Dr Acheson decided that he would become rich beyond anyones wildest dreams by manufacturing diamonds by harnessing two of natures gifts...Heat and pressure. He did in fact get very close but not close enough; Graphite being the height of his achievement. never the less the burgeoning steel Industry switching processes from Blast to Electric Arc provided the Acheson company with a thriving business. The Great Lakes company of Canada also adopted the process of Graphite production eventually to be bought out by the super size chemical company from the USA Union Carbide (later to achieve fame/infamy further read Bophal disaster). Union Carbide bought out Acheson in the mid/late 1970's.

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This picture is taken from Worrall looking over to the Middlewood area.

The chimneys belonged to the British Atchinson Electro although I

think this was American.

It has been stood empty for quite a while now, I can't wait to see

the chimneys being demolished.

I think the actual name was British Atchinson Electrodes Limited ( BAEL )

They made the huge carbon rods which were screwed together to make the electrodes used in arc furnaces.

These electrodes are used in sets of threes and connected through a huge transformer to a very hefty part of the National Electricity Grid.

The ends of the rods have a tapered internal thread and are coupled together with a threaded carbon nipple.

As the rods are consumed they are removed from the furnace and a new section screwed on the top.

The manufacturing process used made an awful stink which will not be missed over Hillsborough.

HD

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I think the actual name was British Atchinson Electrodes Limited ( BAEL )

They made the huge carbon rods which were screwed together to make the electrodes used in arc furnaces.

These electrodes are used in sets of threes and connected through a huge transformer to a very hefty part of the National Electricity Grid.

The ends of the rods have a tapered internal thread and are coupled together with a threaded carbon nipple.

As the rods are consumed they are removed from the furnace and a new section screwed on the top.

The manufacturing process used made an awful stink which will not be missed over Hillsborough.

HD

I remember going there when I worked on the Ambulance Service in the early 80's I put the brakes on when I entered the building at about 5mph and slid for 20 yards on the graphite, after we had the patient on board my feet kept slipping off the padals so I had to drive without shoes. For weeks after we had black footprints on the ambulance and messroom floor,

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I remember going there when I worked on the Ambulance Service in the early 80's I put the brakes on when I entered the building at about 5mph and slid for 20 yards on the graphite, after we had the patient on board my feet kept slipping off the padals so I had to drive without shoes. For weeks after we had black footprints on the ambulance and messroom floor,

The only 2 commonly used solid state lubricants are graphite and molybdenum sulphide and you just happened to drive through and walk in one of them.

I once lubricated a motorcycle chain with some special high melting point grease which contained both graphite and molybdenum sulphide.

You had to heat the tin of grease up on the gas hob until it melted and then soak the chain in it for half an hour to allow it to pentrate into the chain rollers.

After that you lifted out of the molten grease and hung it up to cool and set solid.

Of course it dripped everywhere and left very slippy black marks everywhere (Don't do this in your mothers kitchen :rolleyes: )

The idea of this solid grease was that it would lubricate the chain but would not get flung off when the chain was rotating at high speed, - IT DID!! :angry:

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The only 2 commonly used solid state lubricants are graphite and molybdenum sulphide and you just happened to drive through and walk in one of them.

I once lubricated a motorcycle chain with some special high melting point grease which contained both graphite and molybdenum sulphide.

You had to heat the tin of grease up on the gas hob until it melted and then soak the chain in it for half an hour to allow it to pentrate into the chain rollers.

After that you lifted out of the molten grease and hung it up to cool and set solid.

Of course it dripped everywhere and left very slippy black marks everywhere (Don't do this in your mothers kitchen :rolleyes: )

The idea of this solid grease was that it would lubricate the chain but would not get flung off when the chain was rotating at high speed, - IT DID!! :angry:

I have in my workshop a small tube of something made by Rocal and called ASP (Anti Scuffing Paste). The leaflet that came with this paste claims that a certain well known quality motor car manufacturer uses this paste in the assembly of their engines. It also made a claim that an engine built with this paste covered several hundred miles without the benefit of any engine oil, on stripping down it was found to be in perfect condition. Some claim :o

We made extensive use of solid lubricants in the steelworks as they can stand long-term elevated temperatures.

One application was lubricating the padlocks securing the precious-metal thermo-couples on the soaking furnaces.

We had a big drum of the powdered version of the stuff in the stores and used to dribble a bit into the key-hole. When this drum ran low someone ordered a replacement large drum.

Much to our amazement it arrived in a number of very large cardboard boxes. Each box contained several hundred tiny blue plastic squirter bottles in the shape of a policeman. When we queried this we were told it was the only way it was now supplied. At least it was easier to use that way and all the technicians walked about with a policeman in their overall pocket.

HD

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I have in my workshop a small tube of something made by Rocal and called ASP (Anti Scuffing Paste). The leaflet that came with this paste claims that a certain well known quality motor car manufacturer uses this paste in the assembly of their engines. It also made a claim that an engine built with this paste covered several hundred miles without the benefit of any engine oil, on stripping down it was found to be in perfect condition. Some claim :o

Sounds a bit like the claims made of some modern friction reducing liquid oil additives based on polymers with PTFE or PTFE properties (eg "Slick 50")

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I think the actual name was British Atchinson Electrodes Limited ( BAEL )

They made the huge carbon rods which were screwed together to make the electrodes used in arc furnaces.

These electrodes are used in sets of threes and connected through a huge transformer to a very hefty part of the National Electricity Grid.

The ends of the rods have a tapered internal thread and are coupled together with a threaded carbon nipple.

As the rods are consumed they are removed from the furnace and a new section screwed on the top.

The manufacturing process used made an awful stink which will not be missed over Hillsborough.

HD

I'll vouch for that HD. When we were first married we lived on the hill between BAEL and Foxhill Road, and the smell when the wind was in that direction was awful. It got into your nostrils and lingered. There was a sensation with it, not burning but unpleasant to say the least. Any idea just what it was that caused the smell?

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I'll vouch for that HD. When we were first married we lived on the hill between BAEL and Foxhill Road, and the smell when the wind was in that direction was awful. It got into your nostrils and lingered. There was a sensation with it, not burning but unpleasant to say the least. Any idea just what it was that caused the smell?

I understand that the electrodes were produced by sintering petroleum coke filler with a coal tar pitch binder under conditions of extreme heat and then subjecting them to heat treatment to produce the required carbon / graphite.

The smell, as I remember it, was also present in the steelworks whenever steel was being worked at high temperatures.

Of course in the electric melting shops it would be the same electrodes, this time being consumed.

It was a sort of acrid smell which drifted over Hillsborough and made a heady mix when combined with the smell from Simpkins sweet factory and the Don Bakery.

I shouldn't think the fumes were very healthy and I would think the people in Fox Hill, Wadsley Bridge and Hillsborough are glad that the electrodes are now produced in some foreign land.

HD

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I understand that the electrodes were produced by sintering petroleum coke filler with a coal tar pitch binder under conditions of extreme heat and then subjecting them to heat treatment to produce the required carbon / graphite.

The smell, as I remember it, was also present in the steelworks whenever steel was being worked at high temperatures.

Of course in the electric melting shops it would be the same electrodes, this time being consumed.

It was a sort of acrid smell which drifted over Hillsborough and made a heady mix when combined with the smell from Simpkins sweet factory and the Don Bakery.

I shouldn't think the fumes were very healthy and I would think the people in Fox Hill, Wadsley Bridge and Hillsborough are glad that the electrodes are now produced in some foreign land.

HD

It wasn't a pleasant smell but it was a smell that outsiders seemed to associate with Sheffield. "you can tell you are in Sheffield by the smell"

It was the smell you got around the steel works.

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SMELLS:-

I remember Four distinct smells I associated with Sheffield............

1) Hop mash from the brewery what a tasty smell that was, last places I remembered it were the brewery at the bottom of Ecclesall Rd and Tennants Whitbread in Bridge Street. Strange that Rutland Rd and Stones never produced that aroma.

2) Aitchesons Tar that was impregnated into electrodes via vacum. Someone refered to a burning sensation...That's exactly what it was the carsonogenic chemicals in the vapour/smoke would react with both oxygen and sunlight to create vthe burning sensation. Even with barrier cream applied to our skin liberally coming off a morning shift on a sunny afternoon could be agony, I have seen many fair skinned employees reduced to tears by the effects of sunlight on pitch infected skin.

3) The smell of burnt diesel fuel as the inneficeint busses would crawl up Sheffield hills at snails pace. It was interesting how many people actually got hooked on the smell and could be seen to visibly draw a deep breath as a bus pulled away from its stop on its smokey journey.

4) Who can forget the smell of soluble oil, anyone in engineering would come home smelling of the stuff.

There were of course many smells that spelled the word Sheffield...The steam of Victoria and Midland stations, the mix of tea,coffee and fish in Castle Market. The old fairs too had a distinctive smell the Steam of the Shamrock ride mixed with the electric sparking of the bushes on the dodgem pick ups.

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SMELLS:-

1) Hop mash from the brewery what a tasty smell that was, last places I remembered it were the brewery at the bottom of Ecclesall Rd and Tennants Whitbread in Bridge Street. Strange that Rutland Rd and Stones never produced that aroma.

2) Aitchesons Tar that was impregnated into electrodes via vacum. Someone refered to a burning sensation...That's exactly what it was the carsonogenic chemicals in the vapour/smoke would react with both oxygen and sunlight to create vthe burning sensation. Even with barrier cream applied to our skin liberally coming off a morning shift on a sunny afternoon could be agony, I have seen many fair skinned employees reduced to tears by the effects of sunlight on pitch infected skin.

I'll remember that wonderful hop-mash smell to the end of my days too Nevthelodgemoorowl.

Whenever I was taken into "town" by my mother in the early nineteen-fifties that wonderful rich aroma swirled around you.

I think it was mainly down to Duncan Gilmours brewery on the west side of Bridge Street because it was never quite the same when Gilmours closed down. I've been on a tour of the Tennants/Whitbread brewery and seen them tossing hops into the copper mash tubs by the garden-fork full 'so I know that they used real hops but the smell didn't seem the same.

My father, a world-class expert in drinking bitter always used to say that Stones's was "chemical beer" and certainly the smell from the Rutland Brewery was a very unpleasant sour smell.

Concerning all the "nasties" pouring out of the BAEL chimneys, I dare say that most of the present day production is in places like China and I don't suppose they take any more care of their workers than British industry did at the time.

I worked at the Stocksbridge steelworks and right up to the mid eighties they were still using Towns Gas supplied from local coke ovens at Chapeltown & Orgreave. This was because British Gas couldn't supply more than a small amount of natural gas at the time. Towards the end Orgreave made no attempt to clean the gas and we got it straight from the ovens, complete with every nasty you can think of.

All the gas governors had to be stripped down and cleaned at very regular intervals and the workshop stank as the leather diaphragms, some of them huge, were scraped clean and "dubbined" before being replaced.

It's the biggest wonder out that some of us are still around.

The smell of gas would enter your system and exit it again with extremely embarrassingly noxious results.

hilldweller

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