• Lima Factory

  • Discussion related to Baldwin Locomotive Works, Lima Locomotive Works, Lima-Hamilton Corporation, and Baldwin-Lima-Hamilton.
Discussion related to Baldwin Locomotive Works, Lima Locomotive Works, Lima-Hamilton Corporation, and Baldwin-Lima-Hamilton.

Moderator: lumpy72

  by Allen Hazen
Very melancholy sights.
(And, given its derelict appearance, probably not the safest building to go poking around in!)
Thanks for posting the photos.

  by hankadam
Absolutely frightening. This is where I first started to work, in August, 1950, shortly after the merger with Baldwin Locomotive Works was announced. I was there until 1952, when I went into the Navy, and have only been back once, and that was in 1960. I witnessed the last diesel locos, and the transition of the large erection shop into a shop for making M-48 tank hulls, that were finished machined and then shipped to Ford and Chrysler for final assembly into finished tanks. I am surprised that access is so easy - think of the liability for whever owns it now. Sincerely, Hank Rentschler

  by Tadman
I would assume the city of Lima or some economic development agency owns the property - nobody wants to pay taxes on useless factories.

I do find those urban exploration trips fascinating, although I'm not as extreme as the guys from that website - I explore the former Thrall Car factory when I have time, as my company is a tenant at the site.

  by hankadam
LIMA LOCOMOTIVE WORKS, and BLH = here's the latest - - - the southern portion of the 67-acre site is being developed by GLOBAL ENERGY, a Cincinnati-based Company. They are planning a $600 million plant, rated at 540 megawatts, named LIMA ENERGY. The energy source will be coal and petroleum coke, turned into synthetic gas (gasification process). Construction on part is expected this August. The town of LIMA may own some or all of the site, but that is not clear from my sources. Much of the above was gleaned from a recent article from the LIMA DAILY NEWS, wich can be found on GOOGLE. Access to the area has now been restricted, and some of the buildings shown may now be demolished. Hank Rentschler

  by modorney
That machine that looks like "apparatus for wrapping things in brown paper" is actually a blueprint machine.

Blueprints (technically "blueline") were blue lines on white paper. The machine consisted of a glass drum - about a foot in diameter, and four to six feet long. Inside the drum was a long fluorescent lamp, but very bright (and hot). One took a drawing, pencil on a translucent paper (vellum), and put it on top of a piece of the blueline paper, the same size.

One fed the two pieces into the machine, much like inserting a dollar into the bill slot on a coke machine. The glass drum rotated around, and rubber belts carried the paper past the light. The bright light exposed the copy paper, much like a photographic contact print.

Then, one separated the original, and sent the copy into another slot, where ammonia fumes developed the print, making the lines blue.

The machines ran hot (from the bright light) and were smelly (ammonia). So the machine consisted of a few blowers, one to cool the lamp (air ran the length of the glass cylinder. Another to extract stray ammonia fumes.

The bottom of the machine (the part below the table) is for storing the rolls of copy paper. Generally, three types of copy paper were used. One was a standard copy paper, sort of like thick newsprint, and it printed blue lines on white. Another was a translucent paper, that printed brown lines on the translucent paper, sort of a thick onionskin. These copies were referred to as "Sepias" - they could be used to make more copies. The third type was a plastic (mylar) that could be used as drafting media - it had a texture that accepted pencil lead, and the copy lines (black) could be erased.

Older (and cheaper) companies would use the sepias for drafting, sepias don't erase (tho there is a chemical that will eradicate the sepia lines), and are hard to draw on.

In addition, the bottom of the machine housed the blower motors and the drive motor for the glass drum.

At the table top, one can see the two dozen brown rubber belts that drew the original and copy paper into the machine. The middle of the machine is where the print came out of the light section, and went into the ammonia section. You can see the black (ammonia resistant) belts that took the print past the ammonia section.

The top of the machine is the output of the ammonia section - the six trapezoids catch the finished prints. Along the sides are controls for the speed (sepias took longer), the brightness and the ammonia feed rate. And atop - the very necessary vent duct!

earlier -

"some kind of processor, but is probably the main control box for the building's electronics" - this is a two way radio. Used to talk to radios in the locos and trucks.