Pipe - Oval / Egg-shaped (1)
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When new sewers were designed for London in the last half of the 1800s, egg-shaped (or oval) sewers were determined to be the best cross-section for the larger "combined" sewers. (This design is sometimes called "English" because of its association with London.) The design was also used in Paris and many early sewers in the United States.

   


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For
Reference

Vincent Duseigne

For a unique look at the sewers of Belgium, see Photos/Graphics-Belgium. These photos are drawn from Egouts de Bruxelles, a website featuring numerous photos of the sewers and drains of Brussels by photographer Vincent Duseigne. Additional sewer, drain, and aqueduct photos can be found at his underground exploration website.

The old Brussels sewer system was largely built in the last half of the 1800s and features brick sewers, often oval in shape.

For
Reference

See Sanitary Engineering by Baldwin Latham (1884) for a number of illustrations of egg-shaped sewers. Posted under Articles/Design - Before 1900
Design drawings and illustrations of egg-shaped sewers

Oval sewer designs used in London's early sewers.

Source: Mary Gayman, "A Glimpse into London's Early Sewers," Cleaner Magazine, © 1996, COLE Publishing Inc. Reprinted with permission from Pumper and Cleaner.

Oval sewer designs used in London's early sewers.

Source: Mary Gayman, "A Glimpse into London's Early Sewers," Cleaner Magazine, © 1996, COLE Publishing Inc. Reprinted with permission from Pumper and Cleaner.

Graphic

Sections of London sewers, circa 1884.

Samuel M. Gray, Proposed Plan for a Sewerage System, and for the Disposal of the Sewage of the City of Providence (Providence: Providence Press Company, Printers to the City, 1884), Plate 13, opposite page 50.


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Poster showing antique and modern sewer cross-sections from the sewers of Paris.

Source: Courtesy of Bruno de Ville d'Avray, Mairie de Paris / Direction de la protection de l'environnement, Section de l'assainissement de Paris; and Lucien Finel, previous Deputy to the Mayor of Paris (in charge of water and sanitation management).

Graphic

Sections of Paris sewers, circa 1884.

Samuel M. Gray, Proposed Plan for a Sewerage System, and for the Disposal of the Sewage of the City of Providence (Providence: Providence Press Company, Printers to the City, 1884), Plate 14, opposite page 52.

1914_bma07.jpg

Sections of Paris sewers, circa 1884.

Samuel M. Gray, Proposed Plan for a Sewerage System, and for the Disposal of the Sewage of the City of Providence (Providence: Providence Press Company, Printers to the City, 1884), Plate 15, opposite page 52.

Typical early sewer cross-sections, including egg-shaped designs.

Source: Harold E. Babbitt, Sewerage and Sewage Treatment, 6th edition (New York: John Wiley and Sons, 1949), p. 63.

Early typical cross-sections of sewers, 1894, including egg-shaped sewers.

Source: Supplement to Engineering News and American Railway Journal, 8 February 1894.

Typical sewer and manhole sections from West Bluff sewer system, Peoria, Illinois, 1897. Includes egg-shaped sewers.

Source: Engineering News and American Railway Journal, Volume XXXVII, No. 4 (28 January 1897), insert between pp. 56-57.

General details for egg-shaped sewers and manholes with in the Pennsylvania Avenue subway project, circa 1900.

Source: George S. Webster and Samuel Tobias Wagner, "History of the Pennsylvania Avenue Subway, Philadelphia, and Sewer Construction Connected Therewith," Transactions of the American Society of Civil Engineers, Volume XLIV (December 1900), p. 27.

Graphic

Details showing designs of egg-shaped brick sewers, circa 1910.

J. T. Brown, W. H. Maxwell, editors, "Sewerage," The Encyclopaedia of Municipal and Sanitary Engineering (New York: D. Van Nostrand Company, 1910), p. 428.

Graphic

Details showing designs of Paris sewers, circa 1910. Figure 8 shows an egg-shaped branch sewer design with a flat path for sewermen. Figure 9 shows the main sewer in the Rue de Rivoli, with two paths for walking. Figure 10 shows the Clichy outfall sewer.

J. T. Brown, W. H. Maxwell, editors, "Sewerage," The Encyclopaedia of Municipal and Sanitary Engineering (New York: D. Van Nostrand Company, 1910), p. 429, 430.

Main street sewer construction in Biddeford, Maine, circa 1914. Close-up of oval sewer. Sewer runs from White's Wharf up Main to Alfred and up to Summer Street. This photograph shows construction combining a brick invert with cast-in-place concrete. Photographer: Robert Henry Gay.

Source: Used with permission of the McArthur Public Library photo collection. All rights reserved. Image 7443 of the Maine Memory Network.

   


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