The Meco-Moore cutter loader was developed in the early 1930s and was first installed in a mine in 1934. Invented by M.S. Moore, it was originally developed by the Mining Engineering Company of Worcester, hence the name.
It was designed to work on the coal seam in a longwall panel. Its two (later three) cutter bars, or 'jibs', would shear and undercut the seam, and load the cut coal onto an attached conveyor belt, removing it to the access tunnels. It was the first machine designed to perform both cutting and loading tasks simultaneously - previously, miners would have to blast the seam, a far riskier operation.
This first ever Mining Review item gives a whistle-stop tour of the factory making Meco-Moore cutter loaders, showing the level of accuracy needed to calibrate machines designed for such a physically demanding role. The miners who will be using the machines are consulted throughout the assembly process, simultaneously learning how to use it while viewing and understanding every element that goes into its construction.
*This film is included in the BFI DVD compilation 'Portrait of a Miner: The National Coal Board Collection Volume 1'.