The Advance of Machinery

There have been installed at the Shobnall maltings of Messrs. Samuel Allsopp & Sons two machines that are calculated to ultimately effect a saving of labour to the extent of 50 per cent. The machines, for which patents have been obtained, are the result of several experiments on the part of Mr. F. Griffiths, maltster at the works mentioned. The appliances are known as “the Burton automatic grain sacking apparatus” and “the Burton grain bulking machine.” The former has been working for some little time, but the latter has only just been perfected.

Formerly the unloading of grain from railway waggons and bulking it into heaps six feet deep has been entirely performed by manual labour, at a cost of between 6s. to 8s. per 100 qrs., and the total cost of removing 450 qrs. per day has been about 13s. 4d. This appliance, however, can put barley in bulk to a height of six feet at the rate of 400 qrs. per day from any distance in the granary, with the aid of the necessary number of boys, at a cost of 1s. 4d. per day per boy. Where grain requires moving from one part of the warehouse to another the sack-filling machine can be employed to lift it into sacks or tip barrows, and the bulking machine deposits it where it may be required. The method generally in use for putting grain into heaps on the arrival of a large consignment (though in some cases maltsters use their own particular system) is by means of men carrying the material in sacks, running up a plank and pitching it over. But in this way a lot of labour is entailed, and the work is arduous, seeing that each sack contains 16 stone weight.

The method of the new apparatus is simple. The contents of the sacks are shot into a receiver, and the grain being conveyed up an elevator in cups, is finally distributed where required from a shoot. In regard to the automatic sacking apparatus, the saving effected is placed at between 50 and 60 per cent. In the majority of granaries most of the grain is bushelled or otherwise lifted by hand into sacks. The machine under notice entirely obviates this, and is capable of “sacking up” from 500 to 650 quarters per day of nine hours, with the help of three boys. It is entirely automatic in its movement into the grain, and can be driven off any existing shafting by either a special rope drive or by a motor of any description fitted to the machine, thus making it entirely independent. This is an ingenious contrivance. It is placed at the side of a heap of grain, and in the front part there is a worm which works the grain to the centre. As in the other machine, the barley is then taken up over the elevator in cups on an endless belt, and thrown into the hopper, from which it passes through the slide and into sacks at the back in charge of lads.

The most intricate and vital part of the machine is, perhaps, the eccentric and ratchett arrangement, which pushes the machine forward into the grain. This part, when one bag is full, is automatically thrown out of gear by the contact of two buffers at the front with the grain. The lad then puts down the slide and stops the grain while he takes the full bag away and opens the slide at the mouth of the other bag. With this machine only one strong boy need be in attendance, to hang on sacks for filling. The cost depends somewhat on the distance the sacks have to be taken for loading into railway trucks. The total cost per day for filling 500 qrs. into sacks and loading them into railway trucks has been 15s. 8d., against 9s. or 10s. and upwards for every 100 qrs. by hand labour. The machines are in daily use at Messrs. Samuel Allsopp’s maltings, and it is claimed that they will in all probability revolutionise the method of dealing with grain at maltings in the course of time.

Burton Evening Gazette.

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