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Man Engines

Steam Power



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Mining Cage with men copyright Royal Institution of Cornwall

A rugged type of lift to transport the miners up and down the near vertical shafts.

They would be lowered and raised by a winder machine. This was attached via a hook and wire which extended up and over the pivot or sheaf wheel held at the surface on a headgear. This can be seen at Geevor. In modern times, the cage ran along runners on either side of the shaft and had emergency brakes fitted should the winder malfunction. There were cages of different sizes, some holding 4 or up to 9 miners at a time. Sometimes the cages were also used to transport machinery underground as well.


Photograph reproduced with the kind permission of the Royal Institution of Cornwall


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