SUCCESS! BEAM ENGINE RUNS (BRIEFLY) ON COMPRESSED AIR
After the piston detachment episode, I did not hurry back to the beam engine project. I talked to some steam expert colleagues about my valve timing problem. They suggested that my plans were drawn in “first projection” and that maybe I had interpreted them as “third projection”. I think that means that I had assumed I was looking down from above, whereas some older plans are drawn as if looking up from below (or something like that).
If so, it might have meant that the piston and valve movements were way out of sync.
So, I removed the crankshaft and its key, and replaced the key with a grubscrew. That allowed me to experiment with different positions of the crank on the mainshaft. Eventually I obtained some purposeful movements, and I got so excited that I immediately made a video. The video that follows is that video. Way premature and I should not show this first very awkward effort, but here it is, warts and all. Fortunately I ran out of compressed air before it became really embarassing. When I do some fine tuning of the valve timing, and fix all of the leaks, and attach the governor connector shaft so the governor works, I will make a more professional video. With a video camera on a tripod.