McKenna Process Company
Plant formerly located in Joliet, Illinois - ca. 1920.
Image 9 - Drawing the rail from the furnace
Drawing rails from the furnace - Overall
Image 9. Drawing rails from the furnace.  The hot 
rail is pulled out endwise upon a roller table, from
where, chain conveyors skid it transversely to the rolls.


Details scanned from the original print:
a. Drawing Rail From Furnace-Overall
b. Mill Stands & Hot Saw
c. Man at Furnace Door
d. Detail of Motor Drive
e. Detail of Mill & Hot Rail
Note: The spacing between the two roll stands used in
this mill turned out to be critical. They were OK when
rails were 30 feet long, but when longer rails came into
use, the mill hands had to make sure that the two stands
were synchronized well enough that the rail could enter
the second mill before it exited the first one without
buckling or stalling both roll stands. This was partially
solved by taking a heavier reduction in the second pass.
Drawing rail from furnace - Mill Stands and Hot Saw
Mill Stands & Hot Saw

The hot saw is also shown in Image 13. Both battered ends were cut off from
the rerolled rail, which was elongated by the rolling operation by the two feet
or so that the hot saw removed. This eliminated the worn bolt holes as well
as the battered ends of the rail, which the rolling could not restore.
Drawing rail from furnace - Man at Furnace Door
Man at Furnace Door

Note by George, III: There are six individual doors at this end of the furnace.
Four of the levers are in the closed position, and two are in the open position
(i.e., all the way down, against the side of the furnace). It is not clear who is
operating the mechanisms that pull the rail out of the furnace, then shift it
laterally, and finally push it towards the roll stands.
Drawing rail from furnace - Detail of Motor Drive
Detail of Motor Drive

Note by George, III: This is one of the very few electric motors visible around
the mill. Its function isn't obvious. Perhaps it is a hoist for handling the mill
rolls ...
Drawing rail from furnace - Detail of roll stands and hot rail
Detail of Mill & Hot Rail
Note: The spacing between the two roll stands used in this
mill turned out to be critical. They were OK when rails
were 30 feet long, but when longer rails came into use, the
mill hands had to make sure that the two stands were
synchronized well enough that the rail could enter the
second mill before it exited the first one without buckling
or stalling both roll stands. This was partially solved by taking a heavier reduction in the second pass.