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JOHN RUSSELL'S RUBBER AND BRUSH SMUT MACHINE

RESTORED BY PHIL ROBERTSON

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Phil Robertson of Brownstown Indiana has been in the milling business since he started working in his grandfather's mill at the age of 12. Mr. Robertson has been in the flour milling business ever since, being trained as a miller by his grandfather, then graduating from Kansas State with a B.S. degree in grain milling, eventually running the family mill business his adult life. He has worked on every kind of milling machinery in the old type mills dating as far back as the early 1800's.  As a student of the development of the North American roller mill, he is an authority on how it changed the flour milling industry.

Since his retirement he has helped restore many mills, and is a specialist in the restoration of wheat scourers or "smut machines" and Roller Mills. His work has been exhibited at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

Mr. Robertson was very helpful in informing me as to the proper names of the various parts of smut machines, helping me to clarify my study on the Eureka Brush Machine.

Mr. Robertson restored a John Russell Smut Machine in 2008, which has a patent date of Sept. 14, 1880, and was manufactured at their Chambersburg Pa., plant.  This machine is from Beck's Mill located in Beck's Mill, Indiana.  At my request Phil sent me his photos of the restoration, so I could display them here.

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1-Frame of machine. 2-Floor of machine showing suction holes for brush assembly. 3-Floor of machine with drive pulley and shaft in place. Note chute which directed the scoured wheat into a wind trunk for cleaning with a blast of air by suction. 4-Foot bearing which holds drive pulley and shaft. Note chute at top which directed grain into the scouring cylinder. On the bottom is the exit chute which directed the scoured grain into a wind trunk for a final cleaning. 5-Assembling Brush cylinder.  6-Brush assembly, in 8 sections.7-Scouring case being refitted. 8-Scalping shoe after restoration. 9-Side view, shaking shoe in foreground. 10-"Wind Trunks" or suction assemblies before final assembly. 11-Front of machine, shaking shoe is on right.

All photos courtesy Phil Robertson.