Wadkin Machinery – A Past Life.

by | Aug 4, 2012 | 5 comments

Our line shaft machinery was originally built and purchased in around the 1900’s and the fantastic thing for us is that it was used by the same business right through its life up until 1993 when they finally closed their doors. When we purchased the machines we weren’t all that clear on what kind of a life they’d had but we’ve since learnt that they were the backbone of a thriving building business with contracts as large as building 166 houses down in Dover. We’ve been forwarded the footage below and were quite amazed to see the machinery up in action! This was taken during the last few days of business and records the vintage set up being used  much as it would have been when it was first installed 90 years earlier; there’s a great focus on the terrific stationary engine that was being used at this time to to put all in motion. Unfortunately for the machinery though it’s next life is only just beginning!




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  1. Ken

    HaHa absolutely amazing, thanks for posting. Its also amazing how these guys kept all there fingers. They could still order 10 pints every night eh. 😉

  2. douglas

    Brilliant – the background soundtrack of the shaft drive is quite like an old mill. The machines seem to stop reasonably… Mac Timbers has a vertical resaw takes 3 minutes to come to rest.
    As expected the Tsaw was used for ripping, and the bandsaw for the curvy things, hence it’s narrow blade.
    Pics soon of the cross-saw with bench no doubt?? A very long job sorting all the machines but you will get there and it will certainly be worth it.

  3. DaveL


    Great film, old oil engine with a very large fly wheel, what a good power source for that old iron. I have a Wadkin AGS, new by your standards, but has the same style on dust collection. I am looking forward to seeing your kit back in use.

  4. Chris Buckingham

    What a fantastic time capsule this is. did you get the stationary engine with the purchase as well? One thing that very noticable on this short film,is that there appears to be very much less dust in the air,compared to what you get from “modern” electrical powered machines,I wonder if that is due to cutter design,or cutter speed,or just that it did not show up on the film!Many thanks for sharing this with us!

    • Richard

      Thanks Chris, Unfortunately the engine wasn’t up for sale but we’ve had a few ideas about how to power them all.


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