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British Industrial History

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Comer Sandys-Ball

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Comer Sandys-Ball (1876-1936)

1936 Obituary [1]

COMER SANDYS-BALL was in business on his own account as a consulting engineer from 1920 until his retirement in 1933. He specialized in placer mining, dredging equipment, and private electric light installations.

He was born in London in 1876 and in 1895 he entered the works of Messrs. Laurence, Scott and Company, Ltd., electrical and mechanical engineers, of Norwich, as a first-class pupil.

Two years later he became a first-class pupil of Messrs. Johnson and Phillips, at Old Charlton. In 1897 he entered the City and Guilds of London Institute, where for a year he studied machine testing, fault localization, and instrument calibration, under Professor Silvanus Thompson.

He then became resident engineer for the British Thomson-Houston Company, Ltd., and took charge of the construction of various tramways, including the overhead construction, car equipment, cables, and depots.

He acted as chief assistant to his father, a civil and mining engineer, from 1900 to 1904, and supervised the design, erection, and testing of suction dredgers for placer mining and harbour dredging, and he also patented a hydraulic separator for treating gold, platinum, tin, and diamonds.

Subsequently he became representative of a firm manufacturing electric light and power equipment, and arc-lighting installations.

In 1912 he was made a director of Messrs. Brown and Green, of Luton; the firm was concerned with general engineering iron-founding, and with the production of brass and aluminium castings.

Mr. Sandys-Ball was appointed in 1917 managing director of the Brooke Engineering Works, St. Albans and Harpenden, where aircraft fittings and motor car parts were produced.

Two years later he became director and manager of Kingsbury Works, Ltd., St. Albans, which specialized in coverings and "dope" for aeroplane parts. He held this position until he took up his consulting work.

He was elected an Associate Member of the Institution in 1902, and was also an Associate Member of the Institution of Electrical Engineers.

His death occurred at Claygate, Surrey, on 7th April 1936.

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