Boring Tools and their Makers

  Workshop Appliances by C. P. B. Shelley, 1873    

This treatise is intended to give, in a concise form, an explanation of some of the contrivances used in the Engineer's Workshop.

The recent establishment of scholarships, to which the name of Sir. Joseph Whitworth, Bart, is so nobly attached, having, it is thought, rendered the present work necessary as an aid to those who intend to offer themselves as Candidates for this honourable distinction.

The student, in making himself familiar with the appliances described, will but be following in the steps of many of our most eminent civil engineers, some of whom have made improvements in mechanism, upon which, however trivial they may appear in themselves, has depended the success of the most brilliant of their achievements.

To the workman, many of the explanations which the book contains may indeed be superfluous; but the ever-increasing demands for greater accuracy in his handicraft render it very desirable that he should have the means of acquainting himself with the present methods of obtaining delicate measurements a subject upon which it has hitherto been difficult for him to obtain information.

The thanks of the Author are due to Sir Joseph Whitworth; also to Messrs. Sharp, Stewart, & Co., of Manchester; to Messrs. Shepherd, Hill, & Co., and to Messrs. Fairbairn, Kennedy, & Co., of Leeds; to Messrs. Tangye Brothers, of London, and to Mr. J. J. Bagshawe, of the Thames Steel Works, Sheffield, for their liberality in supplying photographs &c, from which many of our illustrations are taken.  He is also greatly indebted to his friend Mr. A. L. Newdigate, for so kindly rendering his valuable assistance and co-operation during the progress of the work.


More than two hundred and fifty years ago the greatest English writer on philosophical subjects, wishing 'to quicken the industry and rouse and kindle the zeal of others' expressed himself as follows:

The introduction of famous discoveries appears to hold by far the first place among human actions; and this was the judgment of former ages.

For to the authors of inventions they awarded divine honours, while to those who did good service in the State (such as founders of cities and empires, legislators, saviours of their country from long endured quarrels, quellers of tyrannies, and the like), they decreed no higher honours than heroic. 


MF No. 2 Hand Drills


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