A Great Piece of Cooper History from Roger Kriebel has been added regarding the Cooper Engine. You can see that information here.
THE COOPER ENGINE STORY BY ROGER KRIEBEL
In October 1999, Columbia Gas Transmission Co. donated the No. “0” engine at their York Compressor Station on State Road in Medina, Ohio about 20 miles west of Akron.
No. “0” engine is a 485 HP Tandem Double Acting gas engine built by C & G Cooper Co., of Mt. Vernon, Ohio, to pump natural gas through gas pipe lines. Cooper entered into the manufacture of gas engines in 1909. According to Cooper records, S/N 2581 (No. “0”), was built June 1913 and sold to Medina Gas & Fuel Company. The engine was brought to the York Station in 1942. We are still researching the locations of the engine between Medina Gas & Fuel Co and the Columbia Gas Transmission Co.’s York Station. Back in the first half of this century it was nothing for gas companies to move one of these engines, or a whole station, to a new gas field.
The No. “0” engine was connected to a 16” x 36” compressor cylinder, also built by Cooper, which was a high-pressure cylinder. York used 2 stages in compressing gas to pipeline pressure. The low stage used a bigger 25” x 36” cylinder.
Engine No. 2581, a Tandem Double Acting, referred to as “T.D.A.”, which has two cylinders in tandem (end to end) of 21 1/2” bore and 36” stroke, each double acting (like a steam engine) but 4 cycle, therefore giving a power stroke each half turn of the crankshaft. The pistons have cooling water pumped through them to prevent overheating. The big flywheel is 14 feet in diameter and runs at 60-120 RPM.
We started negotiations December 1989 with Columbia with numerous delays until October of 1999 when it was donated to R & T.
The morning of Saturday, October 16, Bill Hazzard, Keith Blaho and I met Okey Moffatt and Aaron Lilly, both of West Virginia, at York Station to start disassembling engine No. “0” to be removed to R & T. The first day was spent removing plumbing and the smaller parts. Before the day was over Bob Campbell arrived from Canada. Bob did a great job of photographing the move. We had “short sleeve” weather for most of the week.
Sunday more help arrived with two leaving. We got into the heavier dismantling work, which went without any problems. To save time we picked up fixings at the local grocery for lunch sandwiches to eat at the station, and some days even supper, in order to work late into the evening.
Monday got into splitting the flywheel and lifting the crankshaft out of the bearings. Also part of the crew was working on exhaust piping which came apart the hardest. John Wilcox spent the day removing the 20 nuts on each end of the cylinder and disconnecting piston rods from crossheads. On Tuesday we got into separating the power cylinder and hoisting many heavy parts to safer locations for demolition of half the building over the engine. By late evening the crosshead and compressor sub-bases were broken loose from their grouting.
By Wednesday all that was left to do was break the main from loose from the grouting. First it was jack hammered around the edge and then lifted with wedges, jacks and the overhead crane. Well it didn’t go quite that easy. By mid-morning the demolition contractor arrived to demolish half of the building over the engine to facilitate the crane for loading the big pieces onto trucks. We spent quite a bit of the day cleaning up the debris and moving pieces for pick up by the crane.
Thursday morning the big crane provided by the demolition contractor arrived early along with two tractor-trailers from Roger Gerhart to haul the heaviest pieces. A third truck from Western Pennsylvania came too late for the crane so we had to load the flywheel halves and the crankshaft with a track-hoe. Each of these pieces weighted 11,000 lbs.
By Friday the weather had gotten cold, cloudy and windy. Two more trucks were scheduled, one early and one mid-day. Unfortunately they both came late, so we had time to get smaller pieces ready for loading. Barry from the General Contractor had a forklift brought in. What a great help it was in loading, which went on until after dark.
Saturday, weather was unbearable, but we had to load up all the rigging equipment and blocking. We also salvaged another good muffler, for Keith that weights about 2 tons. We managed to pull out about 2 PM. Unfortunately we didn’t have time to salvage several large spare parts from another engine. During the week we got a number of smaller spares.
I want to thank the crew: Keith Blaho, Roger Kriebel, Bill Hazzard, Mike Murphy, John Wilcox, Aaron Lilly, Kevin Hujber, Brian Mann, Bob Campbell, Clyde Burkholder, Charlie Brummer, Ethan Lehman and Okey Moffat whom also has helped in keeping us informed in the later negotiations and researching the engine’s history. Also thank you to York Station for their cooperation and help and to Barry from Four Seasons Environmental for his help.
On the home front at R & T, two trucks arrived Friday morning with the heaviest pieces, frame and cylinders. We were so fortunate for Amos Zimmerman to offer to bring his 20-ton truck crane to R & T to make unloading easier. On Saturday three trucks were waiting at the gate to unload a lot of parts. Thank you to the unloading crew: Clyde Burkholder, Charlie Brummer, Dan Gehman and anyone else that helped. We are very grateful to Amos Zimmerman for leaving his truck crane to assist in unloading on Saturday. Also thank you to Roger Gerhart, Elam Martin and Enon Valley Cheese Company for trucking.
We are almost finished greasing and storing the parts until we can re-assemble it. The Cooper will be an impressive display when finished.