On might 5, 1719, Scottish mechanically engineer Andrew Meikle was born. Meikle is best known because that inventing the threshing machine, a an equipment used to eliminate the outer husks from grains of wheat. The mechanization the this process took lot of the drudgery out of farm yard labour.

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A Brief history of the Threshing Machine

Threshing describes the mechanical process of separating the grains during the harvest the threshed crops. The straw (long and also short straw) is first sieved out of the result mixture of straw, chaff and also grains, and then the chaff and grains space separated. Similarly, the seed of legumes space threshed native the pods, amongst other things by speak out. To execute this, a horse pulls a load over the grain. An extremely early threshing device types were hand-fed and horse-powered. In 1834, man Avery and Hiram Abial Pitts devised far-ranging improvements come a machine that automatically threshes and separates serial from chaff, releasing farmers native a slow and laborious process. They to be granted the United claims patent in 1837. One more threshing machine was developed in 1843 by the Australian inventor man Ridley. That is not totally clear, once Meikle designed his machine, however is is assumed that it was completed approximately 1786.


Andrew Meikle (5 may 1719 – 27 November 1811)

Andrew Meikle and also the Mechanization the Threshing

Andrew Meikle to be a millwright in ~ Houston Mill, born in East Linton in east Lothian, Scotland. The is assumed the he based his design on a an equipment patented in 1734 by Michael Menzies. However, the device failed and also Meikle more analyzed the problem. He ongoing to construct a solid drum with fixed beaters that beat fairly than rubbed the grain. The north that made Meikle’s device a success may have actually been copied from the flax-scutching maker used come beat the fibres indigenous flax plants. At roughly the same time, Meikle designed “spring sails” for windmills, allowing canvas designs the were an extremely prone come storm damages to be replaced by a series of shutters operated by levers, enabling each shutter to it is in turned to offer small wind resistance in high winds or storms.<4>Paving the method for the farming RevolutionAndrew Meikle’s Treshing machine is concerned as a key development because that the brothers agricultural revolution in the late 18th century. According to the household Cyclopedia, Meikle’s machine caused far-reaching improvements in the quality and quantity the labor: “By the addition of rakes, or shakers, and also two pairs of fanners, all driven by the exact same machinery, the various processes the thrashing, shaking, and also winnowing space now in its entirety performed, and also the grain instantly prepared for the general public market. ” later on, steam-powered machines used belts associated to a traction engine.

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Farm Riots and other Consequences

The success that Meikle’s third threshing an equipment ended up play a duty in farm yard riots in 1830. Farm workers were fed up with years that high taxes, short wages, and wars. They faced massive unemployment since the thresher make the employees redundant. British enclosure laws, i beg your pardon had started centuries earlier, accelerated greatly at the end of the 18th century. Farmers shed their grazing rights and also many were left there is no even sufficient land to sustain a subsistence living. The general Inclosure act of 1801 were responsible for a number of British leaving for the joined States. The laws additionally resulted in a ready-made workforce for the rapidly increasing industrial revolution in Britain. The introduction of the thresher drove plenty of farmers to the brink of starvation also as yields improved. The swing Riots of 1830 brought angry previous farm workers out to smash and destroy threshers and also threaten the farmer who used them. Those participating in the riots to be punished severely. Number of were hanged and practically 500 were transported to Australia.<3>