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The First Hotel to Have Individualized Room Temp Control for Guests

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Erin Holohan Haskell
Erin Holohan Haskell Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 2,346
I thought you'd like to see these photos take by @LMacNevin (Thank you, Lance!) of an original Johnson Controls thermostat from the Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee.

The frame reads:
"In 1893 with the installation of the Johnson System of Heat Regulation, the Hotel Pfister became the first hotel to have individualized room temperature control for its guests. Enclosed in this case is a replica of the patent issued to Professor Warren Johnson for the Systems of Temperature Regulation, the first thermostat and a picture of Johnson's desk including the original thermostat, various tools and books, and a photograph of the inventor himself. This display was donated by Johnson Controls Inc. founded in 1885 by Professor Johnson, Today the company, headquartered in Milwaukee, is the global market leader in facility management and control systems."








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JUGHNEMad Dog_2EdTheHeaterManmattmia2Larry WeingartenHVACNUTCorktownPC7060EBEBRATT-EdIronman

Comments

  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,108
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    Great looking place...beautiful.

    Pneumatic controls or otherwise?
    CLamb
  • HVACNUT
    HVACNUT Member Posts: 5,888
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    Very cool.
  • CLamb
    CLamb Member Posts: 299
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    Beautiful thermostat but how was it set? I see the scale at the bottom but I don't see anything movable to set it.
  • Erin Holohan Haskell
    Erin Holohan Haskell Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 2,346
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    Upon further inspection, what is pictured here may be a replica. However, here is more information on how the original thermostat operated:
    http://www.hevac-heritage.org/built_environment/pioneers_revisited/johnson.pdf

    See pages 4/5:

    Johnson’s Multi-Zone Temperature Control System
    “Johnson’s most notable contribution to temperature control was the automatic multi-zone temperature control system- a pneumatic system that used a bi-metal thermostat to control air flow through a nozzle and thereby operate a pilot regulator. The amplified air signal from the regulator was then used to control a steam or hot water valve on a heat exchanger, or to control a damper of a forced air system. He received a patent for the system in 1895 (US Patent No. 542,733).”

    President
    HeatingHelp.com

  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,839
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    I have seen a couple really old Johnson Pneumatic control jobs. Today they use plastic pneumatic tubing in the rare case where pneumatic controls are used. One place they are still used is in hazardous locations...fumes etc...no sparks from pneumatics.

    The older jobs installed in the 40s-60s use 1/4" copper tubing with soldered joints.



    I have seen really old jobs pipes in 1/4" brass pipe with all threaded joints
    Erin Holohan HaskellIronman
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,959
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    Some of our buildings built in the 2000s use copper tube. Not sure why they still have some pneumatic controls.
  • unclejohn
    unclejohn Member Posts: 1,833
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    It says warmer cooler at the bottom cant tell if there is a wheel to spin or not. I was just in the Hotel DuPont on Thursday in Wilmington. And was thinking how neat it would be to see the boiler room. Didn’t get to see that but did see The Hit Sardines at the Baby Grand. 
  • unclejohn
    unclejohn Member Posts: 1,833
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    The Hot Sardines in case you wondered
    https://youtu.be/BJNkEl8B9s4
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,399
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    I have seen a couple really old Johnson Pneumatic control jobs. Today they use plastic pneumatic tubing in the rare case where pneumatic controls are used. One place they are still used is in hazardous locations...fumes etc...no sparks from pneumatics. The older jobs installed in the 40s-60s use 1/4" copper tubing with soldered joints. I have seen really old jobs pipes in 1/4" brass pipe with all threaded joints
    Ed, You just brought back some old memories from when I was a very young man in the trade. We may have been doing this for too long.
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
  • clammy
    clammy Member Posts: 3,114
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    Yeah those wonderful pneumatic systems and all the marvelous things that they did from control valves to control hydronic and steam . I had seen one system in a very large older home unfortunately lack of compressor maintenance and replacement w a run of the mill air compressor w no drying ability destroyed every pneumatic valve and control but thank god for the new repair kit ie vise grips they held open every valve stem of course fuel consumption was off the charts and the home had hot and cold spots but at the point there was absolutely nothing that could be saved . a lot of these systems usually went into disrepair and w the first opec oil embargo a lot of things changed drastically including cheap fuel . Everyone went to electro mechanical and then digital control systems and daisey chaining systems it was clearly the end of pneumatics . Another type of system mostly gone mainly due to once understood they where pretty easy to understand and repair and re calibrate those pneumatic valves always amazed me the power of surface area to force required to compressor the return spring ability to modulate a valves position according to pressure applied and no electric just awesome mechanical stuff nearly all gone like the Mayans and dodo birds ,Us to at some point it’s all part of a u overall plan that nothing last forever nothing I guess including pneumatics
    Peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • FStephenMasek
    FStephenMasek Member Posts: 88
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    I see many high rises, probably almost all, with pneumatic controls.
    Author of Illustrated Practical Asbestos: For Consultants, Contractors, Property Managers & Regulators