May 18 2017 3Comments

Where did the big ones go?

One of the largest wind wheel sizes produced in Australia was for the 35ft [10. 7 metre] Comet ‘B’ Pattern windmill.

These were made by ‘Sidney Williams & Co’. Only fifteen of them seem to have been produced. The first six were made in Rockhampton, Queensland from 1915 to 1922, and the others were made in Sydney from 1924 to 1943.There is a rumour that one 40 foot [12. 2 metre] version was made, and went to the Northern Territory. As yet there is no substantiation for this.

Below is a table of the original locations of this model, the serial number of the particular windmill, the supply date and a note on their fate where known. The specific locations of privately purchased windmills has been restricted to noting the nearest centre. The windmills were installed over water points ranging in depth from 1 O’ to 500′ and erected on a mix of 40′ 45′ and 50′ towers. [Parts of No’s 105 & 113 were used for the windmill erected at the ‘Slockmans’ Hall of Fame’ at Longreach, QLD.]

Research on what was probably the largest commercially manufactured windmill in Australia is currently under way and an article will be forthcoming.

3 comments

  1. There was a 40 ft. mill built in about 1958 that was sent Northern Territory. My name is Wayne Ticehurst I was a 1st year apprentice at Dulwich hill at the time it was built. I don’t remember the pump size, but do remember one of the senior apprentice in his 5th year design a pressure chamber to go with it. Information received back at our works it was pumping water through a 6 or7 inch pipe a distance of 17 miles .Mister. Reg.[ as we all called him] Williams, was our informant. I am on to 76 years of age in December now with my memory starting to fade a little, but I have often spoken to my family about this mill. I remember Reg. his son John and brother George well. The 5years apprentice from fitting and machining to tool making I could not have been better, it makes me proud to know Comet windmills are sill ben produced. Wayne Ticehurst 1/36 Woodford street One Mile QLD. 4305

    Reply
  2. I was visiting Penong in South Australia on Sat 21/10/17 and they have a Windmill Museum.
    There is a 35foot Comet Windmill ex Kultanaby railway siding which a local group of enthusiasts have refurbished with new fan blades and mechanicals.
    It really is a most impressive and imposing piece of machinery.
    The range of other makes and size windmills is most interesting.
    I was unable to paste a photo of it on this site.
    Regards
    John Adamson

    Reply
    1. Hi John, thanks for your great comment and we would love to get a copy of your photo. Please email it to admin@cometwindmills.com.au

      Reply

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