List of words “used” in the Cornish tin mines


I to K Words

Igniter Cord A thin, plastic coated, incendiary line used to light safety fuse remotely, such as staff blasts and underhand stope shots. Comes in two speeds, fast and slow.
Incline Sometimes applied to a dipping roadway in a mine (see Decline).
Incline Drive – A heading being mined upwards to connect with a place somewhere above.
Incline Shaft – A shaft sunk at any angle other than vertical. Some old shafts had stretches at varying angles within the same shaft, generally when sunk on lode.
Inter - Intermediate Level Term for any horizontal drive or crosscut between the main levels of a mine. Inters could be any size depending on equipment used and requirements for use. Long inters for underhand stoping were mucked out using shovels and wheelbarrows, and as such were the smallest dimensions possible, whilst inters for long hole stoping were often larger than the main level drives above and below them, and mucked out using compressed air loaders or scraper winches.
Jack Term added to many items, but used on its own principaly applies to lifting devices
Jack Hammer – Common term for a hand held rock drill.
Jack Leg – Common term for an Air Leg, used in conjunction with a Jack Hammer (as above)
Ratchet Jack – A lifting jack using a lever and toothed rack. The lifting lug can be put almost at floor level so often used to lift track and derailed vehicles (also called a Track Jack and Toe Jack)
Track Jack – See Ratchet Jack above
Toe Jack – See Ratchet Jack above
Jigger Pick Term for a small pneumatic (compressed air operated) pick.
Jim Crow A rail bender, used by hooking the claw ends over the head of a rail and screwing a boss into the centre of the head from the other side. Bending two rails to produce a perfect curve in track requires much skill (and effort ) when using a Jim Crow.
John Nobel Term commomly used for Nitroglycerine based explosives, a corruption of the name Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite. The name ‘Nobel’ was prominent on cases of explosive and hence used with a common forename.
Jumbo Term for a vehicle on which is mounted one or more pneumatic or hydraulic, heavy duty rock drills.
Jumper A small drill steel used in conjunction with hand drilling with a hammer.
Kep The lugs moved out into a shaft onto which a cage can be ‘landed’ to keep it in position whilst a heavy item is loaded or unloaded from it, avoiding the spring in the rope as the weight is moved.
Kep Key – The lever used to operate the keps, only one being available and kept locked in a box under the control of the banksman. This key could only be used a ticketed ‘Kep’ operator
Kibble A large bucket attached to a winding engine and used in a shaft to hoist broken rock, spillage, etc.
kicker board a board placed in a shallow raise 45' to prevent the air leg from kicking out (Wheal Jane).
Killas The sedimentary country rock into which the granite batholiths and lodes intruded. The ‘Killas’ around South Crofty was.
King Post The substantial and long uprights between timber sets at shaft stations, there being no wallplates for a couple of sets in order to allow clear access onto the stations.
Kneehole Shot hole drilled around ‘knee height’ in a heading round of holes. Generally the row of holes above the ‘lifters’.
Knocker Line The balanced cable running the length of a shaft compartment operated by a lever on each shaft station, and by grasping hard and pulling by the shaftmen, to pass signals to the winding engine driver via a lump of steel against a steel plate. It is also known as a Hand Line and Bell Line
Knockers Another term for Nuggies, the mythical dwarf like inhabitants of the Cornish Mines, who must be treated with deference

Peter Hughes has supplied words of this colour
D.C.Williams at Exeter University, better known as Gus. has supplied words of this colour
The remainder are supplied by Michael Davis