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the Restoration of Antique Wooden Barn Pulleys…

May 13, 2013

I just completed the restoration of several antique barn pulleys and they are now on display at Shady Lawn Antiques in Walla Walla.

Barn pulleys consist of a ‘frame’ or ‘block’, a shaft/axle, and a grooved ‘sheave’ which is most often referred to as a wheel.  The parts of the pulley can be made out of wood or metal.  I restored a pulley with a wood frame and metal wheels and one with a cast iron frame and a wooden wheel.

I was able to disassemble both pulleys which made it easier to clean the parts.  A wire grinding wheel was used to remove the rust from the metal parts.  The wood frame pulley was cleaned with mineral spirits and fine steel wool.  I did some light sanding on the wood wheel.

The next step was to buff a light coat of paste wax onto all of the (wood & metal) parts.  Then the pulleys were reassembled…

The following picture shows two ‘farm-fresh’ pulleys and the two that I restored.  All four of the pulleys were acquired at the same time – the ‘before and after’ difference is amazing!wooden pulleys (7)

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