small boat bell
June 1, 2008 at 2:14 am #10882GarryParticipant
Gone a bit quiet here, so here’s one of my acquisitions to look at!
The seller informs me that the owner said it came from a ship, as a ship’s bell. He went on to say that the owner was very much into railroad memorabilia. While it could come from a smaller boat/ship I am thinking it may be a railroad bell from something like a yard’s switch engine. That would make more sense for the size and owner’s interests. The Iron clapper is something I would not expect on something that is always near water, they tend to rust.
It’s got a 5 3/4″ skirt, is 4 3/4″ to the top shoulder which is 3 1/2″ in diameter.
It has a 3/4″ neck which is 1 1/4″ in diameter having a 5/8″ ‘bolt’ in the top.
This bolt is interesting in that it has a central tapered div it, which is NOT threaded inside.
It is fixed to the Aluminum Yoke with a 1″ dome nut.
The clapper is Iron, on an iron shank to an iron Eye bolt. It has a tang on the end with a hole for a lanyard > or possibly a light rope back to the engineer’s cab.
Nice little bell, with a solid tone.
June 2, 2008 at 1:53 pm #13853hjlongMember
This appears to be a relatively new, and unused bronze bell that could be used as a yacht bell or a patio bell. It is a very nice bell, but does not appear to be an antique.
Harry Long, MD
June 2, 2008 at 6:58 pm #13854GarryParticipant
I agree about it not being antique, looked newish to me too.
Any idea what the divot in the top screw shank is for? It has a tapered part leading to a short un-threaded shank and a rounded bottom. It appears to be about 1/2 cm deep for the shank. In fact, if it was threaded, I’d suggest it was a screw mount point.
I am not as sure about the Yacht idea as I don’t recall seeing any IRON clappers on bells meant for near water usage. Getting rained upon from the top (the bell acting like an umbrella) would cause much less corrosion than being constantly in a humid environment. Bells for that use, at least any I have closely looked at, all had non corrosive parts.
A yard bell is certainly a possibility. I do, however, recall seeing photos of trains that had more than one bell (a large and a small one) as well as small switch engines with small bells. I was thinking perhaps it could be meant for one of those usages. It certainly makes sense given that the original owner was ‘heavily into railroad collectibles’.
It’s a nice bell anyway! Also a conversation piece around the house.
June 2, 2008 at 8:12 pm #13855hjlongMember
The countersink on top is a centering mark for the machinists lathe either for machining the surface of the bell or for cutting the threads for the mounting. It has no functional purpose for the bell.
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