Inverted Vertical Steam Engine, 1848-1850

1848-1850 in England
James Hall Nasmyth

Model, or small example, of Nasmyth's steam hammer, or inverted, type of engine, 1848-1850, single cylinder.

James Nasmyth came to be a very prominent Victorian mechanical engineer, and his business, based in Manchester, took the steam hammer as one of its primary products, for which it (and Nasmyth personally) became famous. Nasmyth was personal assistant to the London engineer Henry Maudslay, and both were convinced of the importance of models to inform new steam developments. Nasmyth took the basic layout of the steam hammer, with an inverted cylinder mounted on cast iron standards, and replcaed the hammer and anvil with a crank, crankshaft and flywheel. The result was this graceful and compact design. It drove a small machine tool in Nasmyth’s private workshops, and was acquired from Nasmyth's retirement home, 'Hammerfield', at Penshurst in Kent.

Related people


Motive Power
Object Number:
brass, cast iron, complete, copper, steel and wrought iron
flywheel diameter: 472 mm
overall weight:
steam engines

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