Traction Engine – Air Testing
Up until this point the engine had never been run. For an engine that was built entirely without any plans or drawings and was designed (and re-designed) ‘on the hoof’ so to speak, the first test of ‘does it run’ is a major milestone. It is here that we find out if the basic design works, if the valve timing is correct, it it has been built well enough with close enough tolerances that the moving parts run free, but leak free.
This initial testing was done with compressed air. The compressor was regulated to deliver a maximum of 60 psi, and the air feed was controlled with a trigger valve. An adapter was made to fit a Schrader valve into the boiler filler port and the air connected to this.