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The electric heat regulator company damper flapper, and thermostats

Ed_32
Ed_32 Member Posts: 33
About 20 years ago while working on a boiler in Seattle, I found a old control on the wall that consisted of a copper spring, brass gears, and some wiring. Of course it had been long ago disconnected, and somehow I was able to convince the owners of the house to give it to me. Through some recent research, I was able to find out that it is what was called a damper flapper, manufactured by the electric heat regulator company, and when connected to a thermostat and battery, would open or close the damper of a coal furnace or boiler. Through searching the company name I have narrowed it down to be manufactured between 1893, and 1912. I haven't been able to find any of the original thermostats, but have been able to find some from the 20s, when the company became the Minneapolis heat regulator company. If anybody could help me find one of the earlier thermostats, or any of the paperwork instructions for the damper flapper, or thermostats, it would be greatly appreciated. I plan on trying to make some videos of the items I have and post them here or on Youtube.
Thanks for any help!
Ed Harrison
American Craftsman Plumbing And Heating
MilanDdelta Troboertwilliammreggi

Comments

  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,275
    Good grief! The thing was spring wound! What did that mainspring do????
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,827
    The spring was what actually moved the dampers. The battery only operated the thermostat circuit and the device that released the spring mechanism.

    @Ed , how many thermostat terminals does that thing have- three, or just two?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
    mattmia2
  • Ed_32
    Ed_32 Member Posts: 33
    3 terminals, I can manually trigger it, and it goes through it's quarter turn beautifully. I don't know if the electromagnet still works but the wiring looks really sketchy.
  • Ed_32
    Ed_32 Member Posts: 33
    This was from a time before electricity in houses, and before electric motors. You would have to have a battery, to power the electromagnet when the thermostat switched on or off.
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,827
    edited May 2017
    There are two thermostat possibilities. The first is the "Series 10" type which made two contacts in sequence to open the dampers and broke them in sequence to close them. This can use a standard 2-wire thermostat. The second is "Series 20" which is a single-pole, double-throw hookup- you switch the Common terminal to one terminal to open the dampers and to the other to close them.

    Do you have the model number of that unit? It may tell us which Series to use.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Ed_32
    Ed_32 Member Posts: 33
    So far I've been able to pick up two thermostats, a model 55–24, and a model 77. They aren't as old as the damper flapper, so I am hoping to find one of the earlier thermostats.

    MilanD
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,827
    Can you tell what the contact arrangement is in that thermostat?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • bob_46
    bob_46 Member Posts: 813
    That stat was named "77" after Red Grange"s jersey number.
    bob
  • Ed_32
    Ed_32 Member Posts: 33


  • Ed_32
    Ed_32 Member Posts: 33

  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,827
    Looks like Series 10.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
    EdTheHeaterMan
  • katie86myers
    katie86myers Member Posts: 7
    Ed_32 did you ever find anymore info out about the damper flapper? I am helping with a clean out on a place that was exclusively heated by stoves and fireplaces which were in almost every room. The owner was also a blacksmith. We have a couple of them that look to be NOS. They are in great condition and seem to function perfectly. Trying to find out if there is a market for them and where the market is. There is a wealth of information about the invention but so far very little specific to this model.
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,506
    Post some pictures here. Someone would want at least one...probably me
    steve
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,506
    Probably too late for the OP, but I have a copy of this patent for my thermostat that may show how the damper was wired, with the battery.
    steve
  • katie86myers
    katie86myers Member Posts: 7
    Can I post more than one at a time? I also have a video of the parts moving
  • katie86myers
    katie86myers Member Posts: 7
    This is the tag that is still attached
  • katie86myers
    katie86myers Member Posts: 7
    Here ya go
  • katie86myers
    katie86myers Member Posts: 7
    Moving parts
  • katie86myers
    katie86myers Member Posts: 7
    Guys I have no idea what I'm doing here. I cant seem to get the pictures to post more than one at a time or get the video to post. If someone wants to help me out I can be reached using this name at gmail
  • Erin Holohan Haskell
    Erin Holohan Haskell Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 2,281
    Hi @katie86myers, this site doesn't support video upload due to file size, but you can use a third-party like YouTube and embed the video here.
    President
    HeatingHelp.com
  • Ed_32
    Ed_32 Member Posts: 33
    Katie86myers, I have found some of the original patents online, I will try to find the links. I finally discovered a manufacture date on the Damper/Flapper - 1906, it looks like yours may be a bit later.
  • rexswain
    rexswain Member Posts: 2
    I have been wondering for 30 years: What is that gizmo in my basement?
    Have a look here:
    rexswain.com/gizmo.html
    Now I am discovering that it was part of a damper flapper!
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,827
    Yes, the control circuit was battery-powered. The big spring did the actual work.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,060
    I can see the spring moving a damper in one direction but how did it move in reverse?

    As I type this I can visualize weights being lifted by the spring and held, but what released the tension so the damper could return to prior position?

    Another point to make is that electricity was not readily everywhere in the early 1900's.
    We in the far mid west did not have it until the 20's.
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 7,822
    JUGHNE said:

    I can see the spring moving a damper in one direction but how did it move in reverse?

    .

    Think steam locomotive @JUGHNE . the push pull of the steam piston makes the wheel turn on the locomotive. The box of gears turns 180° to open the damper then turns 180° in the same direction to close the damper. Notice the arm on the shaft in this picture.
    Edward F Young. Retired HVAC ContractorSpecialized in Residential Oil Burner and Hydronics
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,060
    I am visualizing the exhaust damper and comb air inlet damper connected by chains & pulleys.

    But can't fit the control into that system.
  • retiredguy
    retiredguy Member Posts: 902
    @Ed 32; The only item I have left is the 8 day 7 jewel clock for the thermostat you show. According to guys that worked for Honeywell in the 1950's and 60's that thermostat was one of Honeywell's first attempts at a day night thermostat. On a coal fired furnace or boiler, the night setting, what was usually called the "bank cycle", the combustion air damper would close and the flue damper similar to a barometric damper was opened, if one was present, to allow the coal fire to go dormant. My Grandpap had a chain device to actuate the bank cycle for his coal furnace.

    The company I worked for sold a lot of coal units for schools and hospitals to cut heating costs in the 1980's and 1990's The new boilers were called "Tri-fuels, that could burn coal, nat gas or fuel oil and in some cases coal and 1 other fuel at the same time. Old steel boilers could be retrofitted with a coal stoker to burn coal only and had a fire brick arch to improve the coal burn thus eliminating the installation of gas or fuel oil burner except in some cases. ( Ah, those were the good old days)
  • rexswain
    rexswain Member Posts: 2
    JUGHNE said:

    I am visualizing the exhaust damper and comb air inlet damper connected by chains & pulleys. But can't fit the control into that system.

    I have added a nice drawing to my web page rexswain.com/gizmo.html although using a different kind of valve.
    Scroll down near the bottom and look for
    image
    I have also added a little movie of my gizmo running.