Bizarre Vintage Photos Of Steam Engines After A Boiler Explosion From The Late 19th And Early 20th Centuries

There are many causes for boiler explosions such as poor water treatment causing scaling and over heating of the plates, low water level, a stuck safety valve, or even a furnace explosion that in turn, if severe enough, can cause a boiler explosion. Poor operator training resulting in neglect or other mishandling of the boiler has been a frequent cause of explosions since the beginning of the industrial revolution.


Boiler explosions are of a particular danger in (locomotive-type) fire tube boilers because the top of the firebox (crown sheet) must be covered with some amount of water at all times; or the heat of the fire can weaken the crown sheet or crown stays to the point of failure, even at normal working pressure.

This type of failure is not limited to railway engines, as locomotive-type boilers have been used for traction engines, portable engines, skid engines used for mining or logging, stationary engines for sawmills and factories, for heating, and as package boilers providing steam for other processes. In all applications, maintaining the proper water level is essential for safe operation.

In steam locomotive boilers, as knowledge was gained by trial and error in early days, the explosive situations and consequent damage due to explosions were inevitable. However, improved design and maintenance markedly reduced the number of boiler explosions by the end of the 19th century. Further improvements continued in the 20th century.

On land-based boilers, explosions of the pressure systems happened regularly in stationary steam boilers in the Victorian era, but are now very rare because of the various protections provided, and because of regular inspections compelled by governmental and industry requirements. Water heaters can explode with surprising violence when their safety devices fail.

(Visited 1 times, 28 visits today)

Leave Your Comment Below

More Inspiring Stories

This Awesome Vending Machine Offers Short Stories And Poems Instead Of Snacks
A Physicist Does 3D Printing Project With His Son: Builds A Full-Scale Lamborghini
The Russians Make The Best Truck In The Universe For $50K
Your Very Own Harrier Jet: This Jet Will Go Down In History As One Of The All Time Great Classic British Aircraft
You'll Be Amazed After Seeing The Classy Interior Of This Rolls-Royce!
"The Control Panel Archive": The Tactile Beauty Of Buttons, Meters, Knobs And Dials
HP Brand Re-Design by Moving Brands
Amazing Photos Of 1974 Lamborghini Bravo Concept, The Dream-Car That Never Made It Into Production
Inside Ciccolella, Italy's Leading Producer of Cut Flowers
Eye-popping China Int'l Optics Fair
The Biggest Structure Made of MERKUR
This Futuristic 1966 Ford Ranger II Concept Truck
E-Ink Powered Watches
SOL REPUBLIC Limited-edition Tracks Headphones
Photographer Joshua Lott Documented Abandoned And Wrecked Cars, A Common Element In A Series Of Cityscapes In Detroit
Pesticides Causing Havoc to Beehives
An Environmental Island Floating on the Equatorial Pacific
FRUITZ Watches
The Human Predators: Innovative Camo Patterns Inspired by Nature
Monster Crane Collapses at National Cathedral
Alien-like Flowers Seen Under the Microscope
Kinda Creepy And Disturbing Russian Robot To Care About Your Baby
"Melting Memories": Augmented Data Sculptures By Refik Anadol
The Best Photos Of The Spectacular One-Off 1965 Dodge Deora Pickup Truck
This Solar-Powered Ecocapsule Lets You Live Off-The-Grid Anywhere In The World
Inside Of The Antonov Aircraft Plant In Kiev
Google Street View Hits the Open Waters to Share Environment in the Amazon
40-Foot Studebaker President: The World's Biggest Passenger Car
Photographer Benedict Redgrove Given Unprecedented Access To NASA Technology
Robots that Create Art: Harvey Moon's Drawing Machines