roller presses

roller presses, casa de la moneda, casa nacional de moneda, machine tool, mint, minting, potosí, steam powered

This is a row of old Roller Presses machine tools that were powered by steam.­ They were used for minting silver coins.­ A Roller Press is used for flattenning bars of metal, which can then be stamped and coined.­

It is located in the Casa de la Moneda, the old Spanish mint where the silver from the mines of Potosí was transformed into coins.­

The original minting machines are preserved in a near-perfect state.­ The oldest machines were made of huge wooden gears and powered by slaves or animals (depending on availability).­ Later they used steam-powered machines, but luckily they kept the old machines untouched (just in case!).­ This huge building is now a national museum.­

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