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Karen and I went to the Slimbridge Wetlands Trust Centre yesterday, where we saw thousands of birds but the weekend also produced this acquisition.

Now here comes the Slimbridge connection and the bad news. When the cider press was dismantled and moved, the owners managed to break the cast iron part top right.  I think that I'm correct in saying that cast iron is notoriously tricky to weld, which leaves me with the nigh on impossible task of finding or having a replacement piece made.

Its a great shame that its been damaged because first of all, its exactly what I've been looking for and secondly, its obviously quite a historically important bit of kit. Has anyone got any ideas? Its costing me absolutely nothing other than transport to get it home, so its certainly going to be worth spending a bit on it to get it right.

brummie nick

'Nick' the one off this.

This one's quite a bit more substantial than that one. Its going to take a tractor to load it onto a substantial trailer. It measures up at six foot six by six foot.

John in my opinion (for what its worth) there is only one way to repair a large casting and that is to have it "metal stitched" I have had castings repaired from large pumps to VERY large electric motors. Im sure that if you gooogle metalock that you will find something. I have no idea of the price but a good company will Guarantee that the repair is stronger than the original parent metal.  
cold comfort farm


Nope not tricky to weld if you follow the rules.
I would get a few cast alloy rods or a Softweld 55Ni rod.  Pre heat the cast to around 1000F 500-600c  and do this slowly .
Then start welding. Remember the weld wont cool like normal. and some recommend hammering the weld after.

If you are not confident take it to a specialist welding company or PM me and i will give you a cost on making a new one. (hope thats not advertising)


I don't give a damn about advertising Steve.  The press is on the farm in Gloucester where my son is living. I'll get him to see if he can take the part off and let you know.
cold comfort farm


If you can stick weld you should be able to do this.  Stitch welding is fab and works 100% but I think its more for bigger castings.

A quick Google of the workman family in Slimbridge revealed these two sites and a few other interesting bits of information.

If you can take the broken part to an old fashioned foundry they'll be able to make you a new one. Is it worth trying the Welsh Slate Museum in Llanberis I think they still run the foundry there although not all the time.
cold comfort farm


Hi Bodger, how is the press coming on?

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