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The History of the Sweeping Business


The 1920 WayCleanse Sweeper's Place in History

The 1920 WayCleanse

"After many years of experimenting, Mr. Bernard Kern has succeeded in solving all the problems pertaining to this type of machine (street sweepers), such as dust separation, gutter sweeping, and ease of control; and, he now has in successful operation machines that are practical in every respect."

As the article's editor goes on to relate... "This new sweeper not only removes all the kinds of debris collected by the earlier types of cleaning appliances but, in addition, removes the fine densely germ-laden dust. It remained for Mr. Bernard Kern to evolve a final design of suction street-sweeper that really works under all operating conditions."

by Ranger Kidwell-Ross
Posted December 2013

The Sanitary City Other excerpts from the attached PDF article, "The Gas-Electric Suction Street Sweeper," taken from a 1920 edition of "The Sanitary City:"

"It is a remarkable fact that very little real progress has been made in the cleaning of city streets. Practically the same methods are used today that were in vogue a decade ago. Numerous inventors have tried to solve the street-cleaning problem with a huge vacuum cleaner, but with little success because of the great difficulty in separating the dust from the large volume of air that has to be handled.

Some great photos of the Waycleanse Suction Street Sweeper, which is a gas-electric sweeper, are included in the PDF file linked below, as well a lengthy entertaining and instructive article discussing how the problems plaguing the stormwater runoff community 'today' have been solved. The machine consists of a tractor unit that tows a trailer. The tractor carries the power plant, driving mechanism and sweeping machinery. The trailer carries the dust-separating mechanism and the dirt container.

Tandem Sweeping Another quote from the article (certain to make sweeper manufacturers in the 21st century wish they had the blueprints...): "The [sweeper's] revolving brush stirs up the dirt and litter, which is drawn into the dirt box in the trailer by the exhaust fan. Here the dust and dirt are completely removed from the air by an ingenious filtration process. This dirt separation is so effective that there is no dust in evidence whatsoever, even when the dirtiest of streets is being swept."

For an entertaining read, get a cup of your beverage of choice and open up the PDF file. If you're involved with the sweeping industry, especially the street sweeping end of it, you're certain to enjoy this article! Here is the link to the PDF file.

We're always on the lookout for more sweeper-oriented information we can add to the website, so keep us in mind if you find interesting information about sweeping.

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