Friday, September 26, 2008
Roots of Motive Power Steam Up #4: Steam Roller
This vehicle is one of my favorites at the annual Roots Steam Up: the Buffalo Springfield steam roller. As usual, I took so many pictures of it, it was hard to decide which to feature on the blog. Here, you can see the wood-fueled fire that heats the boiler, through the little air vent on the side. Go to my Overflow blog to see full views of this snazzy classic.
Even today, when I see pavement rollers flattening asphalt on roads, I call them steam rollers, although the modern ones have been powered by petroleum for decades. I hear even younger people use the term "to be steam-rolled" as a figure of speech, denoting being crushed under the will of another person or institution, especially in negotiations. I wonder if they even know about the original equipment? The current Wikipedia article takes a British look at the machines.