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 Post subject: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:14 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 2:48 pm
Posts: 713
Location: Cypress, TX
In the interest in doing my share to keep this forum alive, I am posting a project that I am working on.
It is far from finished but I will update as I progress.

First the story.

A guy called me a few weeks ago and said he had an old bell. He said it was 120 years old and came out of a college in central Texas.
He is very patriotic and wanted to pull the bell on something in parades. He plans to ring it in honor of our military forces.

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He thought a cannon carriage would work for his needs and he found me through my website.
He wanted to know if I was interested in building something like that.
I told him sure! I love stuff like that.

After thinking about it for a day, I told him he needed a limber instead of a cannon carriage. A limber is the two wheeled vehicle that pulls a cannon. In the Civil War, it was pulled by six horses.
I have made two of them. They also held the ammunition chest.

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I made up one of my famous hand drawings to show him what I had in mind.
It will have 36" wheels. The bell is 18" tall and weighs 105 lbs.

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We agreed on a price and I started work.
This is mostly true 4" X 4" fir material.

It is fun to make!

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His intent is to pull this by hand so I made a handle for the front that also can also be lowered to be a foot. I also modified the front end of the pull pole to accept a trailer hitch receiver. Now he can pull it with a four wheeler or a golf cart if he wants to.

I'm dressing the whole thing up with some cool metal work. He doesn't know any of this yet.

More pictures as I progress.
Zulu

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http://www.jmelledge.com


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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:53 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2003 12:01 am
Posts: 1884
Location: San Diego, CA USA
Great project, Zulu! Which town in central Texas? Brady is the declared center and I'm from Brownwood, about 50 miles from there. Lotsa church bells in those old communities.
Are the wheels gonna be iron rimmed?

Thanks for all you do!

Don


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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 5:06 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 2:48 pm
Posts: 713
Location: Cypress, TX
Don2Laughs wrote:
Great project, Zulu! Which town in central Texas? Brady is the declared center and I'm from Brownwood, about 50 miles from there. Lotsa church bells in those old communities.
Are the wheels gonna be iron rimmed?

Thanks for all you do!

Don



Don,
Yes the wheels are going to have "iron tires".
I'm not sure where it came from but I will make it a point to find out as I want to know also.
Zulu

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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 5:32 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 21, 1999 1:01 am
Posts: 2418
Location: Rochester MN USA
ZULU: From a clear blue sky, 1. Will you be worried at all about balance, I'd think the bell and an ammo box loaded would be about the same? 2. As usual will all the metal work be blackened including the hitch? 3. Have you thought about making a hinged cover of some kind to conceal the hitch when the limber is parked so the modern doesn't interrupt the reproduction?

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newtooth 311
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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:20 pm 
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Location: Cypress, TX
newtooth wrote:
ZULU: From a clear blue sky, 1. Will you be worried at all about balance, I'd think the bell and an ammo box loaded would be about the same? 2. As usual will all the metal work be blackened including the hitch? 3. Have you thought about making a hinged cover of some kind to conceal the hitch when the limber is parked so the modern doesn't interrupt the reproduction?


newtooth,
Yes, I am worried about balance. Too far behind the axle and the thing could flip over backwards. Too far in front of the axle and the tongue would be too heavy too pick up.
I have to work on that.

All the metal work will be painted black. The hitch will be easily removed so I'm not worried about concealing it.
Zulu

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http://www.jmelledge.com


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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:40 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 2:48 pm
Posts: 713
Location: Cypress, TX
Making some progress on this.
Here are some more pictures.
Zulu


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This is where I stand now. I expect the wheels to be delivered on Tuesday, 22nd. Then I will be able to make the axle and mount the main frame on to it.

More pictures as I progress.
Zulu

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http://www.jmelledge.com


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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Sat Aug 19, 2017 10:20 am 
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Joined: Sat Jan 14, 2006 10:44 am
Posts: 3842
Location: Skagit Co WA
Always a treat to see progress photos of your projects, Zulu. Thanks for sharing.

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Cheers - Dennis


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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Mon Aug 21, 2017 3:46 pm 
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Location: Cypress, TX
Wheels are coming tomorrow. I will finish this up quickly as my customer wants to pull it in a parade on 9/11.
I have to finish the axle and stain it and the wheels.
Zulu

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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 3:22 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 2:48 pm
Posts: 713
Location: Cypress, TX
The bell limber is finished.
My customer is picking it up tomorrow. He is bringing the bell.
I did this without having the bell in my possession.
I had measurements and the weight.

I had to hang 120 lbs. from the top beam to get my center of gravity right.
It worked!

Here are a few pictures.
Zulu

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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 6:01 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 21, 1999 1:01 am
Posts: 2418
Location: Rochester MN USA
ZULU: Getting the balance just right is a good thing :thumbup: however even when you least expect it some ............ jerk will grab the tongue just to see how heavy it is, and, without realizing it will get the thing over backward. A simple kicker stick under the bed to keep that from happening when the limber is stationary
, parked somewhere might be a good idea if it isn't already there. JUst a WAG thought.

I'm glad to see in your pics that the background seems to be back to some kind of normal, hoping that all your good neighbors are doing as well as they can.

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newtooth 311
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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 8:15 pm 
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Location: Cypress, TX
newtooth,
The neighborhood is not back to normal.
I spent all morning at a neighbor's house just 200 yards from me. We were ripping out all of his sheet rock and hauling it to the street. He got 5' of water in his house.
I've never seen anything like this.

The limber will not flip backward when the front pull pole is in.
If it is not in, it could be flipped by someone lifting the front splinter bar too high.
It's really pretty hard to safe guard against someone doing something really stupid.

Zulu

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http://www.jmelledge.com


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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Mon Sep 04, 2017 8:28 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2004 1:01 am
Posts: 11212
Location: Hamilton, MS
When he brings the bell over, you think he'll let you clang it a couple times? Ya' know, just for operational check purposes. :wink: :D

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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Mon Sep 04, 2017 1:32 pm 
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Location: Cypress, TX
Final pictures.
My customer picked up the bell limber.
They were happy.
Here are some shots of the bell and the flag staffs. The flag staffs on top will fly flags for all military forces and an American flag in the middle.

My only gripe is that they polished out the century old patina on the bronze bell and plan to somehow fill in the dents and gold plate it.
Gold plate a bronze bell? Really?

Oh well, won't be able to see it from my house. :confused:

I did however, get to ring it. It's really loud! Ear hurting loud.
Zulu

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http://www.jmelledge.com


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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 11:53 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2003 12:01 am
Posts: 1884
Location: San Diego, CA USA
You are 'OneOfAKind' Zulu! So happy you joined our site! You are TRULY an inspiration...your craftsmanship, integrity and the fit & finish of your products are no less than exemplary.
Did you (or they) decide not to broadcast what town they represent?? Surely would like to know.

Don


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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Wed Sep 06, 2017 1:55 am 
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Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2015 1:08 am
Posts: 91
Wow!! That's really cool Zulu! :thumbup:

I hope you'll post some pics of it in a parade or something. Very nice, very nice...


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 Post subject: Re: The Bell limber
PostPosted: Wed Sep 06, 2017 7:09 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 2:48 pm
Posts: 713
Location: Cypress, TX
They are from Cleburne, South of Fort Worth.
They say they will send me some pictures when they pull it in the next parade.
It has been my experience that most of the time, the pictures I get from customers are usually pretty poor shots.
We will see.

It has been fun being a part of this forum.
I have posted hundreds and hundreds of photos of my projects that were all lost in the great Photobucket ripoff. :mad:
Not much I can do about it.
I still have all the photos but all the WWA pictures are lost to the public.

Anyone who wants to see my work can do so on my website.
If you have the time. There are over 100 pages of stuff to look at there.
www.jmelledge.com


Bummer!
Zulu

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