Mystery iron bucket

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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby Will Mathieson » 08 Oct 2017 01:47

JUst a guess but appears to be something to transport ore or precious metals. I would think rarely do you require tough cast iron unless you're dealing with heavy contents. I would think copper or tinned copper for urine etc.
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby Frogsmile » 08 Oct 2017 08:14

ploughman wrote:
Frogsmile wrote:Yes I see. Well I’ve just done a search online using the terms: “antique cast iron overhead toilet cisterns” and under images it came up with many examples remarkably similar to your object, especially early designs where the lever protruded from the top centre of the cistern’s cover, which in this case is missing. I am also not sure that the perforated plate on the top is doing more than resting there and not necessarily fixed or a part of it.


But we still need to know if there is an exit hole for the water from the cistern , and the dimensions would be useful too.


Yes, they will be key. Hopefully the original poster can let us know.
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby Frogsmile » 08 Oct 2017 08:16

Will Mathieson wrote:JUst a guess but appears to be something to transport ore or precious metals. I would think rarely do you require tough cast iron unless you're dealing with heavy contents. I would think copper or tinned copper for urine etc.


The cistern/tank was not for holding urine, Will, but water as part of the flushing system patented by Thomas Crapper, more expensive examples were indeed made of copper, but most were cast iron.
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby Will Mathieson » 08 Oct 2017 14:08

Thanks, don't know why I had thought otherwise. I like others don't see any fixture for inlet and outlet, are there no other photos?
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby Frogsmile » 08 Oct 2017 17:13

Will Mathieson wrote:Thanks, don't know why I had thought otherwise. I like others don't see any fixture for inlet and outlet, are there no other photos?


It helps comprehension to look at images of the actual design of a Crapper system, where you will see that the inlet & outlet would be out of view (one is underneath) from the viewpoint we have of the photo. If you carry out a search using the terms I mentioned you will see what I mean. As has been said several times we need some dimensions.
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby ploughman » 09 Oct 2017 18:09

Simon appears to have vanished !
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby A.Roads » 11 Oct 2017 11:26

Here is a photo of another in Hobart, Tasmania.
I am not sure exactly what these were used for.
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby A.Roads » 11 Oct 2017 11:36

And another at this link:

http://aumuseums.com/tas/southern/south ... ry-society

I would like to know where they got the info for their description from..
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby Frogsmile » 11 Oct 2017 14:07

A.Roads wrote:Here is a photo of another in Hobart, Tasmania.
I am not sure exactly what these were used for.


Brilliant stuff, A.Roads, both your images seem to show the same thing and go back far before the invention of overhead toilet cisterns. I think that theory is now out of the reckoning. There seems to be a distinct artillery connection so I think that the Royal Artillery Historical Society (and Institution) should be asked, although I am not sure if they are back up and running at Larkhill (Wiltshire) yet:

The RA Archivist
Royal Artillery Archive
RHQ RA
Artillery House
Royal Artillery Barracks
Larkhill Salisbury
Wiltshire SP4 8QT

Telephone: 01980 634208
E-Mail: sm@salisburyplainheritagecentre.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/RoyalArtillery/Archive/
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby colsjt65 » 11 Oct 2017 20:50

Thanks for that photo Adrian. There are identical ones to that at the Howick Historical Village in Auckland. I haven't been out there for a while to take a photo myself.
The staff there say they were for coal, but I haven't found any primary evidence about them.
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby A.Roads » 12 Oct 2017 01:47

These are quite an intrigue:

here is an older one:
https://www.the-saleroom.com/en-gb/auct ... 1c00cc912c
Dimensions are given as: width 3'3", height 1'9", depth 1'8".
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby ED, in Los Angeles » 12 Oct 2017 05:41

These could be water troughs for the swab of a very large bore, muzzle loading garrison gun. The gun bore was swabbed with water between shots so any hot embers in the bore would be eliminated before the next powder charge was inserted. Field artillery had a bucket or metal pail that was carried under the chassis for this purpose. A big garrison gun would need more water than a bucket could supply. These troughs are difficult to tip over by accident, unlike a round bucket.

I am just throwing this idea out there. I personally don't know what it is. All these troughs are from the muzzle loading, black powder artillery era, as shown by the dates on the troughs.
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby Frogsmile » 12 Oct 2017 09:51

Good thought, Ed. The connection certainly seems to be forts and their associated large calibre guns, so the scenario you describe fits. There is a website covering the coastal forts in Britain that were the model for those in Canada and Australia and New Zealand, it will be interesting to see if there is any mention of these troughs.
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby Will Mathieson » 12 Oct 2017 14:14

had at first dismissed it as a coal container but now? Could be used as a container to ration out coal, those forts were "cold".
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Re: Mystery iron bucket

Postby timothylrose » 12 Oct 2017 14:41

You see a lot used as rainwater stores under down pipes - for the life of me can't find a a single image but we had them at both Fort Nelson and Fort Newhaven as I recall - atb Tim
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