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Sturtevant #8 Propeller Fans...  Rate Topic 
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 Posted: Fri Dec 1st, 2017 08:23 pm
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Duane Burright
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I know I've said this before - but it's really neat to see an old machine like that be brought back. The historical aspect of these old ventilation fans gives a glimpse back at a world where comfort was maintained using ventilation instead of A/C.

Last edited on Fri Dec 1st, 2017 08:25 pm by Duane Burright

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 Posted: Fri Dec 1st, 2017 09:23 pm
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Richard Daugird
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dang! two more hours at work before I can watch the video...

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 Posted: Fri Dec 1st, 2017 11:42 pm
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Dan Foley
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David - As usual, excellent work! Thank you for putting the time in to record those videos, they're always fun to watch.

:up:

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 Posted: Sat Dec 2nd, 2017 04:02 am
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David Allen
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Duane Burright wrote:
I know I've said this before - but it's really neat to see an old machine like that be brought back. The historical aspect of these old ventilation fans gives a glimpse back at a world where comfort was maintained using ventilation instead of A/C.


I really agree there. It is a part of our history that needs to be remembered. I do love seeing displays in museums and historical sites; but nothing can compare to bringing home and seeing, hearing, experiencing these machines firsthand. Instead of looking at it sitting cold and still in a museum behind a roped off area somewhere - I can take it apart, see how it was made, imagine the folks of long ago who built and maintained it, and then see the machine run again in real life right here. It is significant to me for sure.

Richard Daugird wrote:dang! two more hours at work before I can watch the video...

LOL they must block YouTube at your place of work!  :pissed

Dan Foley wrote:David - As usual, excellent work! Thank you for putting the time in to record those videos, they're always fun to watch. 

:up:
Thank you, I really appreciate it!
Today's Progress


Unfortunately, no video today. But I did only boring stuff that nobody wants to see - such as sawing up wood for a stand; and cleaning parts from the second fan.


I assembled all the external parts on the motor, such as the terminal box, blank cover opposite side from the box, stuffing box covers and whatnot.  Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get brass hardware for it locally. This motor uses non-standard thread fasteners. They are a thread pitch which is no longer used. I ran into this on my GE AOU tabletop oscillating fan repairs. Had to order some, and had to drill out and re-tap a few places on that.  Here, I have all the original parts but had just hoped to dress things up a little.


Finished painting the blade with gloss black paint. The blade is rusted and has a pretty rough texture.  I could spend more time on the blade than the rest of the project, by priming and sanding it again and again until the surface is smooth. But I don't really object to the surface it has now. 


Got the shroud painted and began building the structure of the running display. It will be a box fan once it's completed. But for now I ran out of bolts so had to leave it at this for the night. Using the 4x4 lumber because that's what I had - and it looks good.  Going to continue with the "built like a brick shithouse" theme so to speak. 


Then I focused on the second fan. It seems to be in slightly better shape. The first one had a few bent blade tips and the one missing oiler. This one has both oilers and the blade seems a touch straighter.


The blade came off pretty easy.  Motor is very covered in oil. This is because the front oiler is pushed upwards causing it to drain all its oil into the motor, spilling out on the fan.


I did not run this motor before teardown. There was some signs of water in one of the bearings and some rust in there.  Not wanting to damage the shaft and bearing if there is rust or water in there, I just decided to tear the motor down without running it.  The winding resistance and insulation resistance were similar to the other unit so I have no reason to expect problems.



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 Posted: Sat Dec 2nd, 2017 06:34 am
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Richard Daugird
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Ended up staying late at work, came home went straight to the garage for a beer(and play with my 1904 GE pancake). Of course I did a quick look on the AFCA Forum with my phone and read this From David Allen:
"It is a part of our history that needs to be remembered. I do love seeing displays in museums and historical sites; but nothing can compare to bringing home and seeing, hearing, experiencing these machines firsthand. Instead of looking at it sitting cold and still in a museum behind a roped off area somewhere - I can take it apart, see how it was made, imagine the folks of long ago who built and maintained it, and then see the machine run again in real life right here. It is significant to me for sure."

I collect and am an enthusiast of antique cars, motorcycles, tools, fans, etc. and appreciate most anything related to the evolution of mechanical technology. Most guys here have similar interests and passions, I'm sure. David's statement pretty much sums up why we do this in a nutshell.

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 Posted: Sun Dec 3rd, 2017 02:07 am
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David Allen
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Richard Daugird wrote:Ended up staying late at work, came home went straight to the garage for a beer(and play with my 1904 GE pancake). Of course I did a quick look on the AFCA Forum with my phone and read this From David Allen:
It is a part of our history that needs to be remembered. I do love seeing displays in museums and historical sites; but nothing can compare to bringing home and seeing, hearing, experiencing these machines firsthand. Instead of looking at it sitting cold and still in a museum behind a roped off area somewhere - I can take it apart, see how it was made, imagine the folks of long ago who built and maintained it, and then see the machine run again in real life right here. It is significant to me for sure. 
I collect and am an enthusiast of antique cars, motorcycles, tools, fans, etc. and appreciate most anything related to the evolution of mechanical technology. Most guys here have similar interests and passions, I'm sure. David's statement pretty much sums up why we do this in a nutshell.

Very good stuff. It's all similar, to me also. My newest car is a 1989; with daily driver being a 1984!  

Today's Progress

I worked on the support structure and the box build today. Got the fan shroud mounted in the box and made a test run. This fan sounds very nice.  :clap:

Finished the structural support part, made of 4x4 beams, lag screwed and carriage bolted together. This fan is already ridiculously heavy, so I saw no problem with making it more ridiculouser. It's the look I am going for.


Got the sides and top in place....


Wanting to highlight the cast-in Sturtevant name, I painted it with Rust-Oleum Hammertone Copper paint. This was accomplished by spraying the paint in a cap and then brushing it on. Also the motor mounting parts are ready to go back in place.


First the lower arm and the motor its self go in...


Now the other two bolts are in place. I did not tighten any one bolt until all were started in by hand and screwed down all the way. This allows everything to find its unstressed position and nothing is binding or stretched when the bolts are tightened. After everything is set, then the bolts get fully tightened.



Now the fan blade goes on!  Looks so good all complete.


And from the front..


After getting it all together, I made a test run. With the fan securely supported and not hanging by the crane; I was more confident to run it directly to 100% speed. Sounds really nice!







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 Posted: Mon Dec 4th, 2017 03:52 pm
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David Allen
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Yesterday I filled and in stalled the oiler on the first of the two fans. It seemed to bubble a certain amount and then stop, after the oil level in the elbow piece leveled off.

Then, I moved onto the other motor. Started by replacing the lead wires. The motor had a surprise for me. It is listed as 220V (only) on the nameplate.  But on closer inspection, it is actually a 9-wire dual-voltage motor.There was a tag in the motor which was barely legible, showing 220V and 440V configurations. Six of the wires were connected in pairs for the main incoming wiring; and the remaining 3 are tied together and hidden in the sleeve crossing through the motor housing below the wiring.

These wires are spliced right where they pass through the iron motor casing. This is not good form at all, especially considering it is a taped splice and could short out easily!



So that comes off.... and new lead wires are installed.



Finally an over-wrap of heat shrink tubing to make it all official (not shown)

Then I cleaned the stator. Had not done this before the wire replacement for safety reasons. The cleaning solvent is flammable and I don't want to use the heating gun and soldering iron around it.

The exterior of the stator was cleaned with a stiff nylon parts-cleaning brush.  The winding was cleaned with a very soft paintbrush, and air blowing. I continued solvent and air blowing until as much as possible of the oil saturation was gone.

Then, I painted over the nameplate with black paint, in preparation for polishing it and bringing out the information in the plate.


After rubbing the paint off the high areas with Scotch Brite, I put clearcoat over the namplate. The result:


I'll put painter's tape over this nameplate and protect it while painting the rest of the motor.

While waiting on the motor stator to dry, the next step was to clean up the bearings. removed nicks, burs, and other damage caused over the years of service and lack thereof.

Cut out the fiber washers as well; but one of them has not been cut to thickness, because I haven't made the measurement for it yet.



In the interest of showing the parts of the process I missed on the first motor, I have made a video of the stator lead wire replacement, as well as the cleaning of the housing.  It is really too long but what the heck...



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 Posted: Tue Dec 5th, 2017 01:58 am
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David Allen
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A little more progress today, on the second fan's motor.  Yesterday I cleaned the winding and replaced the lead wires. Today I completed the varnishing job and testing of the stator with insulation resistance meter.
Shiny, happy, winding!


Rotor going back in... Yes I removed the blue tape first!  :wondering:


All taped up and ready to paint...


Put some Shiny back on it!


And a video of the test run....



Any thoughts?


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 Posted: Tue Dec 5th, 2017 03:33 am
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Lucas Beshara
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Looks like it was worth the road trip!  Awesome pair:clap:

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 Posted: Tue Dec 5th, 2017 02:59 pm
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David Allen
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Lucas Beshara wrote: Looks like it was worth the road trip!  Awesome pair:clap:
Thanks Lucas!  It was worth the road trip. A lot of work though..... the fans were not in bad shape but building the wooden boxes is very time consuming.

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 Posted: Wed Dec 6th, 2017 01:44 am
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David Allen
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I had a busy day today and didn't have a lot of time to work on the second Sturtevant.  I did manage to get the shroud and mount brackets washed and painted. I need to get wood to build the display box for it, but it was driving rain today and the wood would get wet and warped up if I tried that.

While assembling the motor, I noticed a lot of "little details" that show it was not mass produced to the same degree as modern products.  For instance, the motor has a few bolted-on external parts. These showed evidence that the mounting holes had been elongated at the factory since something didn't line up just right. Hand fitted parts.

Then, as you probably read, both motors were missing the thrust washers. I took measurements of the shaft thrust clearance with no washers on the first motor and ended up making a washer with about 0.150" for each end of the shaft.  On the second motor, the washers ended up being only 0.075" thick.  The motors are not machined the same.  Again, at the factory apparently they were hand-fitted.

Another thing I may or may not have mentioned before is the hardware.  All the bolts on these fans are non-standard.  We are used to common sizes such as 1/4-20 or 1/4-28; 5/16-18 or 5/16-24; 3/8-16 or 3/8 24 and 1/2-13 or 1/2-20. The hardware on this fan is not these sizes. It is an intermediate thread pitch in between the common sizes. The bolts are definitely 1/4 and 3/8 and 1/2 inch - but the thread pitch is not standard. I ran into this on my GE AOU fan. Thankfully (unlike with the AOU) none of the hardware is missing from the Sturtevant fans.  I have to be extremely careful not to damage these fasteners. If that were to happen, there would be no alternative other than to drill out the hole and install a standard size Heli-Coil.

When I was a kid people would see someone doing something that seemed like a mental issue, and instead of saying that - they would say the person was "washing their car in the rain" instead.  Today people probably thought that of me because I was outside in the rain (in rain clothes) pressure washing this Sturtevant shroud. :imao

So since it would be horrible to update this thread without posting a picture - here are all the parts I painted today!


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 Posted: Wed Dec 6th, 2017 04:11 am
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Richard Daugird
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I wonder why they used oddball fasteners. Assuming fasteners were standardized across the board by then? Surely they were...

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 Posted: Wed Dec 6th, 2017 12:18 pm
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Lucas Beshara
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I just started making some of the GE screws. They are 8/36 and 10/36. Rather than the standard 8&10/32. They are actually easier to create because of the slower feed rate required. 
I would guess the slower feed rate would equal less scrap. Pre-CNC and pre-std thread size :up:

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 Posted: Wed Dec 6th, 2017 03:16 pm
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David Allen
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Lucas Beshara wrote: I just started making some of the GE screws. They are 8/36 and 10/36. Rather than the standard 8&10/32. They are actually easier to create because of the slower feed rate required. 
I would guess the slower feed rate would equal less scrap. Pre-CNC and pre-std thread size :up:

Very nice you are making the GE screws.  When I restored my AOU fan, it was before I was an AFCA member.  I did what anyone who doesn't know better would do - and ran a 10-32 tap in the holes to make them work with a 10-32 screw. I know this really weakens the thread engagement, but at the time I thought it was just sloppy machining or years of buildup in the holes.  The amount of stress on the screws is so small that it still has plenty of strength to hold the motor together.

The place where I really had a problem was the oscillator wheel. It had a larger odd size screw thread. I drilled it out ( :hammer:) and threaded it 1/4-28 for the screw that holds the oscillator arm on.  I know, it was a blasphemous sacrilige to do that but at the time I didn't know better! :pissed

The AOU is one of my favorite fans and still looks good and works beautifully in spite of the incorrect screws.  :P

As received:


After fixing up:





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 Posted: Wed Dec 6th, 2017 07:23 pm
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Richard Daugird
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Nice job on the AOU. I have one that was restored by Ted Kaczor and I love it.

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 Posted: Thu Dec 7th, 2017 03:16 am
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David Allen
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Richard Daugird wrote: Nice job on the AOU. I have one that was restored by Ted Kaczor and I love it.
Thanks Richard.  That AOU was my first "really old" fan to restore. It's not the quality restoration of a professional such as Ted; but for a newby it turned out fine LOL! 

Today's Progress


So today I turned my workshop into a wood shop.  All that sawdust makes it smell so nice - and the floor is so nice and clean after the sawdust is swept up.  Perfect oil absorbent!

First the base went together. This is the first level of structural support for the fan. The ends are underpinned by 4x4 wood beams where the wheels attach.


Next, the framework got cut and drilled. Nothing fancy - more 4x4 post joined by 1/2" lag screws.



Then the uprights go on the base. The weight of the fan will be primarily supported by the two uprights, which are supported by the 4x4 beams in the base. None of the screwed joints are in tension, the weight of the fan will work to press everything together harder.



Now the Sturtevant shroud ring goes in. It's easy when you have an overhead hoist. The two orange Carver clamps hold the shroud in place while I measure, tweak, and then drill the holes.


Now that the main support is in place, the upper mount braces go in place. They are lag screwed into the top beam of the frame, and then the fan shroud ring is bolted to them. Again the Carver clamp holds everything in alignment while the drilling is done.  


The drilling is complex. The hole is stepped with 3 diameters. There is a counterbore for the head of the bolt to be below the surface of the beam. This is so the top of the box fan shell can sit flush. Then there is a clearance hole through the beam for the bolt to slide through. And finally, there is a threading-size hole in the part being attached. The lag screw will bite into this hole and clamp the parts together.



The finished result:



The lower mount braces are attached using a different method. The 4x4 beam section is drilled lengthwise for a carriage bolt to attach it to the base of the unit.  Then it is crossdrilled for the bolt to attach the shroud to the brace. The two bolts have to "miss" each other.



And with it installed. There is a nut and washer under the base to hold this in place.


Now the sides and top of the box fan housing go on. This is now at the same level of completion as the first Sturtevant (the box is at least).



I realized one major mistake I made - I did not paint the fan blade yet.  So tomorrow that will have to be done. Didn't see any reason to install the motor if I couldn't go on and complete the assembly.

Still got to come up with controls for them. This will be after my next work assignment is finished. For now I will be happy for both of them to be mounted in their boxes. :D

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 Posted: Fri Dec 8th, 2017 02:34 am
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David Allen
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The two fans are now at the same stage of assembly!  The restoration of the fans is more or less complete and they are both mounted in their boxes.

Got the brackets, the motor, and its oilers in place.


After that, it was simple to slide the blade on.


A couple pictures of the two side by side.


Action shot from the front.


Here is a video of them running.  Phase converter "across the line" startup, as well as some VFD running with varying speeds.


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 Posted: Fri Dec 8th, 2017 03:28 am
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Mel Lagarde
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David
Those fans are so quiet and are beautifully matched motor and blade efficiency.   They are gorgeous and your work amazing me.  Thank you for posting this.  So fun to watch these rising like a phoenix to elegant runners once again.  

Thank you,

Mel

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 Posted: Fri Dec 8th, 2017 04:36 am
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Trevor Soundararajan
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David does it yet again.  It's so refreshing to see this amount of love and dedication to these giants that so often just see neglect, or simply the scrapyard.  What I think is especially cool about these is that their RPM mimics that of belt driven fans.

Thank you once again David for not only your in depth tutorial type videos, but your effort in resurrecting these unsung heroes.


-Mr. T

Last edited on Fri Dec 8th, 2017 04:36 am by Trevor Soundararajan

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 Posted: Fri Dec 8th, 2017 09:51 am
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Henry Carrera
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Great work as usual David!!. If you keep this up you will need a high reach fork lift so you can store them on top of each other. That would be impressive running your "wall-O-fans" on top speed all at once. :D

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 Posted: Fri Dec 8th, 2017 01:47 pm
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David Allen
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Trevor Soundararajan wrote: David does it yet again.  It's so refreshing to see this amount of love and dedication to these giants that so often just see neglect, or simply the scrapyard.  What I think is especially cool about these is that their RPM mimics that of belt driven fans.

Thank you once again David for not only your in depth tutorial type videos, but your effort in resurrecting these unsung heroes.


-Mr. T

Thanks Trevor.  These old fans do indeed mimic the speeds seen by modern belt-drive fans. Reminds me, I remember a long time ago seeing a direct drive fan which had been converted to belt drive.  The motor probably burned out years ago. They installed a pulley on the motor shaft, right up against the motor. Then they put the blade back on, with a belt behind it. Then they had installed a homemade wooden motor mount with screen door hinges for the tensioning action. The new motor was located below the fan.  It looked SUPER ghetto but it seemed to work.  This was when I was a little kid and didn't have a camera of any type. 

I don't need any more large fans. But these were being allowed to deteriorate. There are as far as I can tell, no more of them in running condition that are known to the AFCA crowd.  It seemed to be my obligation to save them.  One will remain in my collection and one will go under the care of another one of us. 
Henry Carrera wrote:Great work as usual David!!. If you keep this up you will need a high reach fork lift so you can store them on top of each other. That would be impressive running your "wall-O-fans" on top speed all at once. :D

Thanks Henry!  LOL yeah I realize that I have a serious "Large Fan Addiction" problem. It would be quite the wind tunnel effect for sure, with all of the large ones going at once!

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 Posted: Fri Dec 8th, 2017 06:57 pm
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Richard Daugird
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I agree with Mr. T. Please don't pity this fool...

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 Posted: Fri Dec 8th, 2017 07:34 pm
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Don Tener
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Here is another cool looking one for you. It is up in New Hampshire. The blades remind me of your Sturtevant

https://nh.craigslist.org/atq/d/antique-commercial-fan/6393372814.html




Last edited on Fri Dec 8th, 2017 07:36 pm by Don Tener

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 Posted: Fri Dec 8th, 2017 08:57 pm
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David Allen
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Don Tener wrote: Here is another cool looking one for you. It is up in New Hampshire. The blades remind me of your Sturtevant

https://nh.craigslist.org/atq/d/antique-commercial-fan/6393372814.html


Hi Don.  I am reasonably sure this is a Sturtevant blade and possibly the shroud ring.  Not completely sure - but maybe they took the motor apart and used the end casings of the motor to make a bearing mount.

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 Posted: Fri Dec 8th, 2017 09:32 pm
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David Allen
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So we have an answer!

....That's a Design 7 Propeller Fan first introduced in 1931. They pulled the motor and installed a V-Belt drive (It should have a Sturtevant ball bearing or Westinghouse sleeve bearing motor). You can see the groove for the belt. That metal hoop shouldn't be there.   Sturtevant did produce a smaller Atticvane Fan (for your attic) that was a single speed V-Belt type....

Poor fan has been Franken-ized as I feared.




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