Coronavirus (COVID-19) While museums are closed, the Science and Society Picture Library prints site is fully operational and we have added an FAQ page here.

Whitworth's planing machine, 1877.

Whitworth's planing machine, 1877.
2 8 c m
actual image size: 32cm x 20cm


Plate taken from 'Discoveries and Inventions of the 19th Century' (1877) by Robert Routledge. Joseph Whitworth (1803-1887) established a toolmaking busines in Openshaw, Greater Manchester in 1833, which soon acquired a reputation for high standards of workmanship. He exhibited many tools and machines at the Great Exhibition in London in 1851. Amongst Whitworth's achievements were the devising of a system of precision measurement which, using a precision flat plane and measuring screw, was accurate to a millionth of an inch, and the development of a standard system for screw threads. The latter, which still bears Whitworth's name, was adopted by Britain's railway companies and later became established as a British Standard.

Image Details

Image Ref.

© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library

buy a print

Select size
Select finish
How many prints?

buy a framed print

buy a canvas

buy a framed canvas