Woodbury’s Patent Model of an Automatic Cut-Off for a Steam Engine – ca 1870

Woodbury’s Patent Model of an Automatic Cut-Off for a Steam Engine – ca 1870

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This model was filed with the application to the U.S. Patent Office for Patent Number 107,746 issued to Daniel A. Woodbury of Rochester, New York, on September 27, 1870. The patent was for an improved design for a governor which could control the cut-off valve for a steam engine. His design, instead of being based on fly balls and mounted on the steam valves, included a system of springs and weights placed directly on the engine's shaft. While more complicated and needing to be specifically designed for a particular engine, it had the advantage of accuracy and economy of operation. Mr. Woodbury's design became one of the first industrially successful shaft governors, and such governors became increasingly popular after this invention.
The patent model is constructed of metal and mounted on a wood base. All of the key elements of the patent are illustrated by the model. A full description of the workings of the governor and diagrams showing the complete design of the patent can be found in the patent document online at the United States Patent and Trademark Office website, www.uspto.gov.
Object Name
governor, woodbury, model
patent model, engine, cut off for steam
date made
ca 1870
patent date
Woodbury, Daniel A.
place made
United States: New York
associated place
United States: New York, Rochester
overall: 12 in x 9 in; x 30.48 cm x 22.86 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
patent number
Patent Models
Steam Engines
See more items in
Work and Industry: Mechanical and Civil Engineering
Industry & Manufacturing
Patent Models
Engineering, Building, and Architecture
Power Machinery
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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