Wednesday, November 15, 2006

grist mill @grantville (nikon d70)

On my second trip to Grantville, I met a character named Bill Brooks. Mr. Brooks had a penchant for chatting and also owned a few of the falling down buildings in Grantville, notably the former cotton warehouse and the grist mill.

While talking my ear off, Mr. Brooks was kind enough to show me around behind some of his properties. First up was some old power generation equipment. I was busy snapping flicks and not paying attention to Mr. Brooks, but I recall this piece operated at enormous RPMs and was fabricated out of metal two inches thick to keep the gears from blowing out in the case of failure.

Next up was this General Motors 454 V8 engine modified to run on natural gas. The engine provided power in a system used to air conditioning buildings using chilled water. Additionally, a heat exchanger in place of radiator provided hot water. At one point in his career, Mr. Brooks engineered and sold these contraptions to building managers. Although more economical than using electric power to cool facilities, mechanics were often unfamiliar with the equipment and had issues repairing them. Screaming tenants and Georgia Power would then convince building management to get back on the grid. Mr. Brooks had apparently picked up several of the surplus machines and sold them on Ebay.

After photographing, I dropped in at Nick's Pizza Stop for dinner and met one of the proprietors, Kim. I enjoyed my tasty calzone and the friendly service.

All photos mentioned in this post were taken with a Nikon D70 and a 28-70mm f/2.8 constant aperture zoom.

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