from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In a steam-engine, the mechanism used for working the valves by hand; the starting-gear.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
And all these operations are directed and controlled by a man who stands in one place, strangely yet not inappropriately named a "pulpit," by means of the hand-gear that gives them all to him like toys.
In altering his course, he exposed the vessel's broadside to the enemy and a shot smashed the pilot-house, but they steered her in with the hand-gear.
"It would be safer to make what ye might call a trial trip, but beggars mustn't be choosers; an if the engines will go over to the hand-gear, the probability -- I'm only saying it's a probability -- the chance is that they'll hold up when we put steam on her."
Then some part of the disused hand-gear gave way under the three-man strain and that hope was gone.
Sir John Anderson, in his admirable Report on the Vienna Exhibition of 1873, says: The most remarkable features of the Nasmyth hammers were the almost entire abandonment of the old self-acting motion of the early hammers and the substitution of new devices, and in the use of hand-gear only in all attempts to show off the working.
The self-acting arrangement was eventually done away with, and hand-gear again became all but universal.
When the bell sounded, the brakesman checked the speed, by taking hold of the hand-gear connected with the steam-valves, which were so arranged that by their means he could regulate the speed of the engine, and stop or set it in motion when required.