Summary of articles in International Molinology No 104 which were published in June 2022

‘Finnish Supermills and their Builders; Part II: Oskar Friman' by Kirsti Horn.

This study is the second part concerning millwrights based around the Gulf of Finland, this time focussing on Oskar Friman (1878-1959). A real entrepreneur, he made many inventions including patented drive belts of interlinked wooden pieces. He had his own mill complex and worked on water and steam powered mills, fitting them out with turbines and roller mills. He also built windmills including the most unusual Granström's mill just outside Hamina.

‘Windmill Sails: John Smeaton and 18th Century Aerodynamics' by Dave Pearce.

John Smeaton was one of the most eminent practitioners of the 18th century, working in the field of civil, military and mechanical engineering. In 1759 he returned to the subject of wind power, seeking to find the most efficient and powerful sail designs. The author examines the predictions of the Scottish mathematician Colin Maclaurin which were tested by Smeaton using models turning on an axis to reproduce wind velocity. He then goes on to compare these results with the sails of two Cambridgeshire mills at Wicken.

‘Windmill recording methodology – the case of the island of Kynthos’ by Panagiotis Markou.

This describes a scientific methodology for discovering windmills using existing records and digital wind-maps. This allowed predictions which were then followed up by new field surveys. The application of this methodology to the Greek island of Kynthos gave impressive results. The author considers its use in other countries of the region.

‘Principles, processes and phenomena in applied hydraulics' by Harmut Wittenberg.

The author begins this article by stating: “This is not an article about mill technology but on fundamental hydraulics and how these apply to mills.” He shows how an understanding of the basics of hydrodynamics not only provides an understanding of channel flow in different conditions, but can also prevent engineers from making mistakes which may prove catastrophic.

‘Mills and Milling Devices in the National Historical and Ethnographic Reserve at Pereyaslav, Ukraine' by Olena Zham.

This article tells how Mykhailo Sikorski founded and developed this museum, 90km SE of Kiev, from the 1970s onwards. Today is stands as a molinological treasure house containing 15 windmills, two watermills, seven hand mortars, ten pedal mortars, and 13 hand-driven mills (nine made of stone and four of wood), plus a number of querns and hand tools associated with the milling process (some very ancient). The exhibits are described with a wealth of illustrations and the windmills are also shown on the outside and inside covers of this edition.

‘An Egyptian watermill' by Ian Scotter.

The author recounts how he came across this unusual mill when visiting the norias in Fayoum City. It was designed with two inlets which each drove a horizontal wheel grain mill, all housed in a surprisingly large building with a fine wooden barrel roof. Unfortunately the building has fallen into ruin since his visit in 2001.

‘Update on the antique miniature mill'’ by Charles Yeske.

This is a short piece reporting on the successful transfer of this collection (featured in IM103) to the archives of the Society for the Preservation of Old Mills SPOOM . Plans are afoot for proper storage and exhibition.

'Horse driven farm elevators, initiated by a children's book' by Yolt Ijzerman.

The author describes the expansion of horse-driven machinery on farms – elevators being typical - before being replaced by the combustion engine. He recounts how his childhood interest in such things was brought back by a recent rediscovery of a book, Orlando Buys A Farm, by Kathleen Hale.

'An unusual windmill 'restoration' on the Canary Island of Tenerife' by Ian Scotter.

This last short piece, another by Ian Scotter, recounts how a windmill has been restored in the middle of a roundabout. The restoration is unusual in that the workings are all exposed.

Also included in this edition of International Molinology is an obituary to Alan Stoyel. There is one book review, by Graham Hackney, on ‘Sugar Mills and Slavery’ by Dr Stuart M.Nisbet.