THE METROPOLITAN ENGINE
As stated in a descriptive circular issued by the American-La France Fire Engine company, the Metropolitan is the result of an experience of nearly fifty years in the manufacture of fire engines. Its simplicity of construction and the accessibility of its parts render it peculiarly adapted for service under any and all conditions. It is readily understood and easily operated, and repairs, if any are needed, can be done quickly and cheaply. The Metropolitan engine is built of the very best materials throughout, and by skilled mechanics. The American pump with which this engine is equipped has two separate and distinct double-acting piston pumps, deftly united in a single body of a new and improved form. The advantage of uniting two pumps in a single casting is obvious, as it combines strength and rigidity. Another important advantage this engine possesses is easy and unrestricted suction-ways in direct communication with properly proportioned receiving valves, which are suitably arranged and in close proximity to the working barrel of the pump, and maintain the piston speeds desirable in a portable fire pump. The construction of this pump provides for exposing the interior mechanism, so that all parts may be readily reached for examination or removal, whenever necessary. Gun metal or other suitable composition is used, and no part of the pump body is subject to wear either by friction or corrosion. Suction or hydrant connection may be made at either side of the engine, and in operation the central core of the pump body is practically a continuation of the suction-hose, and serves to establish a direct communication with the receiving pump valves, arranged on opposite sides of the chamber. The suction-valve area is large, and the proportions adopted contribute largely to the smooth running and efficiency of these pumps, under conditions of speed never attempted in ordinary practice. All valves in the pump are controled by patent improved springs, the tension of which is at all times the same. The steam cylinders used in connection with the pump are of the ordinary slide-valve type. The valve-chests are readily opened from either side of the engine for examination, and the valve-rods are made from a special composition, and cannot corrode. The valve movement is simple, and there is nothing connected with the steam ends that may not be readily understood at a glance. The Metropolitan steamer is fitted with the Fox sectional boiler—a steam generator of the vertical water-tube type. A description of this boiler was given in the issue of FIRE AND WATER ENGINEERING of November 5. The weight of the double extra first-size Metropolitan is 10,800 pounds and its capacity is 1,300 gallons per minute. The extra size weighs 9,800 pounds, and pumps 1,100 gallons; the first-size engine weighs 8,800 pounds and has a capacity of 900 gallons, while the fourth-size has a weight of 5,800 pounds and a capacity of 500 gallons.