Welcome! Log In Create A New Profile Recent Messages

Advanced

Solid fuel boiler

Posted by Arch-Tone 
Solid fuel boiler
June 04, 2018 01:10PM
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about what direction to go next with steam...I definitely plan on getting the mini chopper working, but it shouldn’t need that much at this point, just some more tweaking and improvements. So....I think I have it figured out what to do next. The lawn tractor project from last year needs a new engine and a steam generator. The condenser circuit that worked so well is still intact, and the vehicle is pretty solid with new tires, etc. I believe this is the platform to use.

The original Briggs and Stratton 17 hp engine is toast...and apparently it’s kinda obscure with replacement parts hard to find or not available. Harbor Freight has a vertical shaft “riding mower” replacement V-2, 708cc 22hp monster that would be a great replacement, but would obviously require a lot of steam to fill those big twin buckets. My thoughts at this point is a larger volume nat circ type like an Ofeldt (can’t go too wrong there)...but I have some original ideas, too. The main thing I want to do with this project is have it be a solid fuel (wood) burning machine. After all...it’s the ability to use this type of fuel that sets steam apart from IC stuff. I haven’t really worked with this type of system before, but have read up on some of the challenges involved, mostly from this forum, like controlling the temps using the blower and/or using dampers, etc.

I plan on using the 100’ of stainless steel 1/2” tubing (I bought last year) for the main steam generation and perhaps another 60’ of 3/8” stainless for preheat or economizer. I haven’t crunched any numbers on it yet, but I believe it should produce adequate steam volume for a bigger engine. I’m thinking of doing vertically stacked pancake coils, fire underneath, with an elevated external drum in a naturally circulating configuration. I might use 1/2” black iron pipe as a water wall around the fire box, to pick up the heat from the sides. Because 1/2” stainless tubing can't be coiled in a very tight radius, there will be a sizeable hole in the center of the coil stacks. My thought is to fill the gap with a small fired drum...I have a 12” long, stainless schedule 80 seamless 1” pipe nipple that might do the trick for that. It could work as a carryover trap of sorts, installed inline at the end of the generating coils. The larger, main drum(s) will be unfired and mounted outside the furnace and elevated. The new wood burning steam generator and drums should fit nicely in the back of the vehicle...where I had the 20 lb propane tank installed. This will leave the view unobstructed from the drivers seat and probably a better weight distribution overall.

I am looking for advice on wood burning, automobile size steam systems. Any tricks, ideas, warnings, personal experiences, etc are most welcome and appreciated. It’s new territory for me, but I look forward to the challenge and trying something new.

Thanks,

Jamison
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 04, 2018 02:26PM
Hi Jamison,

Some of the drawbacks of wood firing. Fuel quality is important, small split air dried hardwood is best. Even with that, it will be erratic heat and it will not be as hot as coal or liquid fuels, the BTU's/pound simply aren't there. Wood firing is best suited for firetube type boilers, and wood burning firetube boilers are not well suited for vehicles. A woodburner is going to require a much larger firebox than a comparable diameter liquid fuel burner. A solid fuel-fired firetube will only put out about one horsepower per 10 sq ft of heating surface, this results in the boiler being much larger and heavier for the same output of a liquid fueled boiler. It all starts with the fire.

Horizontal stacked pancake coils. A tube that is horizontal is not going to promote natural internal circulation to any extent back to a reservoir, the steam bubbles and water simply don't know which way to go. Unless you're intending on doing some sort of forced circualtion, but my motto on that is Why force it, when it can be had for free? The Ofledt coils have roughly 5 degree rise from bottom to top. as steam bubbles form they naturally go up which moves the water with them and this promotes natural internal circulation. Poor circulation results in DNB or Departure from Nucleate Boiling which creates dry spots in the tube and subsequent tube failure (And a diploma smiling smiley. I would just build an Ofeldt, Ernest figured all this stuff out for us a hundred and twenty years ago smiling smiley

It's your money and business, but I wouldn't invest any money in another I/C engine to convert to steam. Use that money to buy some castings etc and put together a steam engine - an engine designed to run on steam - one where the bore is 75% of the stroke, again all of this was figured a long time ago with the steam engine indicator, it takes that much stroke to get the efficient work out of the steam in ratio to the bore, same reason muzzleloaders have longer barrels. I/C engines are square and sometimes worse, less than square, having a bore bigger than the stroke. Then there is the water in the crankcase issue, and it's an engine stuck as single acting and virtually no way for it ever to be double acting, double acting engines are basically double the power of their single acting counterparts of the same dimensions. A converted I/C engine is always going to be capable of less than half of the work that a double acting steam engine of the same size can produce on the same steam pressure, due to single acting and short stroke vs bore. Double the volume, but double the work, and that is the only purpose any steam engine, they are machine to convert the power of the boiler to mechanical work.

A wood fired Ofeldt with properly prepared firewood would probably be a lively performer in a car. Of course the drawback there is that it cannot simply be shutdown, unless there is some provision for dumping the fire. There are a few steamboaters that use woodfired Ofeldts, and report good results. it's like anything else, ya just have to get used to the way it wants to run. We build them and they teach us.

-Ron



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/04/2018 02:33PM by IronChief.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 04, 2018 08:33PM
Ron,

Thanks for all your insights...very helpful, as usual. I see your point about natural circulation, I understand the pitch of Ofeldt type coils are crucial to its performance. Steam going in both directions makes for a very poor boiler. I would hate to spend a lot of time, money and energy on something that ends up being just a glorified cappuccino machine. I have an idea for an Ofeldt type boiler that is arranged similar to the marine version Ofeldt, or like how Tony G does his. It works on the same principles, but with the drum to the side and the coils on horizontal manifolds extending across the fire. I was thinking of using the 1/2” stainless tubing for the coils, I think stainless would hold up better in a wood type fire, with the hard to control temps.

Perhaps it’s time for me to fabricate a real steam engine...as you suggested. I could use hydraulic cylinders and bigger versions of the graphite pistons I already know how to make. I need to keep it simple...with the correct bore / stroke ratio...and avoid getting too fancy with compounding, reheating, etc. Simple piston valve or slide valve will do. The gas engine conversions are quick, relatively easy and convenient, and I like using them so I can focus on the steam generation and have something that “works” in the mean time...but now I’m ready to build the real deal. No more trying to fire a muzzle load bullet out of a snub nose 38.

Any idea how long the tubing is in each coil, let’s say for a typical center drum Ofeldt with 15” long coils? Trying to get a ballpark idea of how much tubing I’m gonna need.

Thanks again,

Jamison
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 04, 2018 09:08PM
Im sitting here reading this and have to rub my eyes... Inconel. the next issue is a door that bypasses the fire stream, there has to be a way to simulate shutting down like with liquid fuels. Solid fuel burners are difficult to manage for the range of auto performance.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 04, 2018 10:04PM
Jeremy,

I was hoping you would join the conversationsmileys with beer. Your corn burner is like the ultimate solid fuel machine...the heat that thing was putting out was amazing. You had a real clever way of removing the generating tubes out of the heat as well...maybe something like that is the solution.

I was thinking of possible ways to control the fire in a solid fuel furnace...like perhaps a controlled burst of steam over the fire to temporarily remove some of the oxygen and partially snuff it...maybe with dryer, superheated steam to avoid adding too much moisture. Or a metal plate that slides between the fire and the coils, as Tom Kimmel has suggested, perhaps with some form of thermal storage that can store the heat when not needed...like a battery...so it can be reapplied on demand. Hmmm...maybe incorporate a Serrpollet style flash boiler in the system that gets "charged" by swiveling it in front of the fire while it shields heat from the main generating tubes. A simpler version of that could be used as a superheater instead. Ok...just thinking out loud...

Jamison
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 04, 2018 10:54PM
Mild steel is perfect for boiler construction. Stainless is really not permissible per the ASME for wetted boiler components due to pitting from chloride in untreated water. Of course there are people that use it without incident.

Standard mild steel is the ideal boiler material having the highest strength of common metals at the temperatures we typically run. I've ran my boiler dry about three times and nothing happened to it, same as what a heat treater would do to anneal it, heat it up and let it cool slowly. Of course a copper boiler would be ruined with this sort of treatment. The main thing to remember when this happens, is to let it cool before adding water, many steamboat boilers blew up because of a red hot surface flash boiling cold feedwater introduced to an empty fired boiler. Their feedpumps only ran when the engine did, they would tie up at port for long periods and run the boiler really low, then take off and start adding feedwater and kaboom. Incidentally, that is the first matter in our nations history where the US govt involved itself in private commerce, in answer to public outcry to find a remedy to prevent steamboat explosions. Which they did by introducing standards for boiler construction and operation and requiring fireman to be trained and licensed as well as the pilot. It worked, instances of explosions were greatly reduced. Those early boilers had no steam gauge, only a relief valve and try cocks for gauging water level. The relief valve consisted of a beam with sliding weight to adjust, like a weigh scale. One of the things they used to do out of ignorance was tie the beam down so they could make better time. What made this even more dangerous was the steel for boilers at that time was really wrought iron as malleable Bessemer type steels that we use today had not been invented yet (mid 1800's). In retrospect, James Watt was right.

The coils in my Ofeldt are schedule 40 A53 standard welded seam pipe 10.5 feet long each or one half stick of pipe, each 21' pipe makes two coils. Mr Kimmel has a dandy machine for winding those, we wound mine at his shop and they came out perfect.

-Ron


Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 04, 2018 11:03PM
There is a man that participates on this forum occasionally that has a copper Ofeldt in a steamboat and it's woodfired, hopefully he will weigh in on it.

Wood firing the tug we play the fire to whatever we're doing, coming in to tie up we don't add wood, closing the damper on the firebox also reduces the oxygen and burn rate and lowers the temperature somewhat, and too adding feedwater and blowing down while the fire dies off can keep things under control at idle.

-Ron
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 05, 2018 02:12AM
Wood chip firing is a long-term goal of mine. Fuel cost per mile a tiny fraction of running on pump fuel, and 100% "carbon neutral" renewable fuel, with simple inexpensive equipment.

Jeremy is onto something with a bypass flue to take hot gases away from the tube stack for "instant shutoff", needed in fast-changing road conditions with solid fuel. Jay Carter successfully used hot-gas control shutters for superheat control on the road; it's not pure theory. I have ideas for "radiant heat shutters" to also reflect radiant heat from solid fuel coals away from steam generating tubes during shutdown -- the other part of solid-fuel boilers.

"Under-fed" solid fuel burners, with screw or [preferably] ram feed, seem to give best results. Look into Livio Dante Porta's locomotive burners; separate air controls for radiant coals and flammable gases emitted from solid fuels approaching firebox -- 2 different combustion zones.

Another idea to look into is using [abundant] exhaust steam heat to pre-heat and pre-dry solid fuel on its way to burner/boiler. Really dry [and esp hot] solid fuel gives a very fast "ramp up" to the fire when rapid firing rate increase is needed. I am considering a double-walled fuel feed tube, with an exhaust-steam jacket. Yet another idea is using "ram air" from a forward-facing air scoop/inlet at front of vehicle to give higher firebox pressure and more compact tube stack, without need for a fan. High firing/steaming rate is only needed at higher vehicle speeds, where a ram-air scoop could produce more firebox pressure than most power-driven fans. My thinking is to feed ram air to a small plenum, with "wastegate" air shutter to regulate air feed pressure to firebox.

Add a "banking" control to keep the fire burning at a low rate during standby, and the system would be equivalent to an "instant start any time" steam car with standby pilot light.

Many natural-circulation boiler designs use a 10 degree angle, or steeper, for steam generating tubes. The Bryan boiler used 6-7 foot tubes, coiled up in a peculiar way with tight rising turns at the ends of several straight horizontal runs.

Peter



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/05/2018 05:32AM by Peter Brow.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 05, 2018 12:10PM
Wood chips, and any other version of processed wood fuel requires the time and cost in processing. To saw wood into small block is time consuming and expensive. Also it takes months to properly air-dry or season wood (best way) for a proper burn, even kiln-drying lumber takes several days and it's very expensive.

Running exhaust heat over the wood bunker would certainly help, but there is also the risk of catching the bunker on fire as furnace exhaust temperature (has to be hotter than the steam) is near the ignition temperature of wood and paper. My tug at night puts on a spark show out the exhaust continually a lot of embers when the fire is tended, the result inducing draft pulling embers all the way through the boiler, this would also add to the fire hazard.

Keep in mind when looking for an alternative to processed oil fuels, most solid fuels can be processed and gasified and burned more efficiently in an internal combustion engine.

Roper ran his cars and steam bikes on charcoal, so it can be done. The bike was reportedly clocked at 40 mph. He probably simply shoveled the fire out of the firebox when he wanted to shut it down. Roper' bunker was a backpack full of charcoal, he was a small stature man of about 120 pounds. Whitney remarked that he was a larger man than "Roper" (they worked together for a time), Whitney weighed around 160 pounds. Two very brilliant men.

-Ron
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 06, 2018 07:14PM
Quote
IronChief
Wood chips, and any other version of processed wood fuel requires the time and cost in processing. To saw wood into small block is time consuming and expensive. Also it takes months to properly air-dry or season wood (best way) for a proper burn, even kiln-drying lumber takes several days and it's very expensive.

Although the process of making wood pellets and humidify is reasonable, you can get rabbit feed pellets for a cheap cost, and this is similar to wood pellets. There is a lot of activity on this prerequisite by the Biomass Magazine. a lot is being done on the area of process for pellet fuels.

This is why I burn whole kernel corn, I have had to adapt several methods. I store my corn kernels in a 55 gallon drum, and can control water content and control bugs.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 07, 2018 04:35AM
Hi Jamison!

Solid fuel fired steam vehicle is the way to go! A real steam workhorse must eat solids and drink from the road puddles... I’m working on this way too. And this is no easy way. After some search there came that the best way to deal with solid fuel to my opinion is what John Wetz brilliantly pointed up in his woodgas fired systems. Solid fired boiler with a coils of a little thermal inertia and wide range of instant power should be heated from a top or at least from the side and burning of the fuel itself must be done in two steps for better controlling the intensity and quality of burning process. Better to have first stage of burning (with lack of oxygen to produce pyrolysis gases) outside of the boiler coils arrangement, becouse this part of furnace has great thermal inertia. Better keep it in insulation outside boiler coiling and rule the flow of hot gases which can be burnt in the second stage like any gaseous fuel in the secondary air flow... John Wetz device is tall, but being placed at the rear side of the tractor it won’t be a big problem with even 50-60” height. But it is possible to place boiler in parallel to gasifying furnace. Updraft gasifier will work with boiler not worse than downdraft one. Shutters and fan are needed for control. As shown by wood fueled ICE practice, gasifiers have good turn down ratio and sufficient responce. You may use boiler with forced recirculation instead of a monotube John used, to simplify controls and have boiler with more thermal reserve. You already have some experience and parts for it…

As for ICE conversions. I would use only crankcase with crankshaft and conrods from it, perhaps valves, and would machined the rest parts.

Wish good luck with Your new project and insistence to You!

Serge
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 07, 2018 08:38AM
Here is a chart which should be used when deciding on which fuel to use. Highest heat or BTU rating per pound is going to produce the best result.

The charts like this assume natural draft. The statement is often made that inducing the draft for solid fuels will increase the heat output which is true, but it is really only increasing the burn rate and with it consumption, the BTU/pound remains the same. It is what it is.


-Ron


Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 07, 2018 11:52AM
I'm going back to wood pellets too. It takes 1-3% of the energy in the pellets to make them, which is very small. Also, I've had great success several years ago with a gravity fed pellet burner made of pop riveted sheet metal with no welding. It put out tons of heat, and you could fully throttle it by pwm control of the blower fan. It worked really well. I'm building a new pellet burner using my welder this time for something with more longevity. My old pellet burner vids are on my YouTube channel. They're super simple to make.

I don't think this one will be gravity fed. The only problem will be figuring out how to control the auger. Since I'll be turning the blower fan up and down, it's gonna have to be tied to the blower output somehow.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 07, 2018 01:07PM
Quote: Also, I've had great success several years ago with a gravity fed pellet burner

I remember that system you had, that was pretty slick. Seemed to work very well, I wondered why you weren't using it.

-Ron
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 07, 2018 09:00PM
Perhaps you can drive your auger from the same motor that powers your blower so when one speeds up the other does as well. Thru gearing the auger could be run at a different speed than the blower but could increase at a set ratio to the blower speed. Just something to think about.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 08, 2018 07:51AM
I control the blower by pwm from an arduino based on the pressure, adding the auger motor to pwm won't be a problem. Plus the two will have different stall points, so I'll be able to tune their relationship electronically.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
June 18, 2018 02:30PM
I figured I'd post here since I'm not really at the point to make a new thread yet. I'm working on a pellet burner that uses an auger. I'm busy fabricating the auger and stuff. The burn pot is a small stainless strainer I got from the dollar store, and it's easily removable. It's set in a hole in the side of a 30 caliber ammo box, since it was a real cheap metal box. I cut another hole in the bottom and welded a piece of black pipe, and that will be the blower fan inlet. I've got a 30cfm 12 volt centrifugal blower fan that I'll be using.

The pellet feeder is a piece of exhaust pipe with a notch cut out and a sheet metal hopper welded on. The auger is a garage door spring. It was quite the process to make the auger. First, I took the garage door spring and stretched it between two trees using ratchet straps. Then I took a propane torch and heated up the coils until they stretched out. It worked surprisingly well, and one spring is enough to make like 8+ feet of auger. I'm using the cheapest harbor freight flux core welder. I'm also using 24 gauge sheet metal for the hopper. It's quite the challenge to weld it with this setup, but it is working, despite everythingsaying you can't weld sheet metal this thin with fcaw. The auger motor is just an 8 rpm 12v gear motor from ebay. I still have to figure out the best way to attach the motor to the pipe and the auger.



Re: Solid fuel boiler
July 26, 2018 11:02PM
I've spent years thinking about it. And very gradually doing something. Finally got an ofeldt built, tested, installed on a 3/4 ton 4x4 truck, bought an antique westinghouse engine for it, almost ready to run 2 winters ago and last winter when I intended to finish it I got called off to drive truck all winter so it didn't happen. So waiting on another winter to finish it and put it to work as a firewood processing and hauling truck. (running on it's own product with a centrifical force splitter running off the engine flywheel)

It would seem to me a lawn mower would be mighty small to work with. Really not any more work time to build a larger one than a small one. When I get going on my 2nd steam truck it will be on another 4x4 vehicle chassis, I already have an old junk nissan pathfinder that would work. but I've decided on a yarrow type boiler on front where it's more convenient to feed from the drivers seat, and lower profile better suited to a wood fire in the middle. and a custom low profile cast iron engine built to fit underneath. (like a 2 cy double acting opposed engine that lays flat) The old steam design engineers said nothing beat cast iron components, cast iron on cast iron was the very best for long term wear. at one time I did consider using a hydraulic cylinder tube, but then discarded the idea realizing it would not wear very well. A cast iron cylinder sleeve from an old dozer would be better if a premade cylinder is wanted, with a cast iron piston and end caps, outside bolted like a bolted hydraulic cylinder. I have some I replaced from a D4 cat that were heavy wall and about 10" long by 4" dia. But I've since decided to cast my own when the time comes to build another one, since melting and casting iron is a fun thing to do, and not hard to do with a cupola and hardwood charcoal. And I like using the old metal working machines I've collected. A couple flat belt drive lathes and a 60's vintage fabco milling machine. And maybe make it with corliss type steam valves in the cylinder heads using variable cutoff for speed control. Except for the fact I found mention that Corliss valves were slow, primarily used on large low rpm engines. Maybe not too slow though. Maybe a combination of gridiron valve inlet and poppit outlet would work better, since a gridiron valve doesn't have to move far to open and shut, set up the valve linkage where it always opens at the same point, but control the cutoff point with a governor, and a hand lever governor control to go from idle to full speed like a normal tractor.

Hmm, just thinking I do have an old hyd cylinder I picked up off the road, (fell off a load of scrap likely) that looks like it's cast iron, I should check it out, if it is it might make a good steam cylinder for a single cy engine. 150 year old steam engineering is fun, and can keep me going when petroleum fails. I am continually amazed at how much oil is being extracted from the earth, but it's a dead end resource, it can't last. Right now I'm busy constructing a water power facility, get my own power to run stuff on. Not a normal hydro plant, static hydro, inverse hydro power, but still using gravity pushing water down to generate power.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
July 27, 2018 06:58AM
ReubenT Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I've spent years thinking about it. And very
> gradually doing something. Finally got an ofeldt
> built, tested, installed on a 3/4 ton 4x4 truck,
> bought an antique westinghouse engine for it,
> almost ready to run 2 winters ago and last winter
> when I intended to finish it I got called off to
> drive truck all winter so it didn't happen. So
> waiting on another winter to finish it and put it
> to work as a firewood processing and hauling
> truck. (running on it's own product with a
> centrifical force splitter running off the engine
> flywheel)
>
> It would seem to me a lawn mower would be mighty
> small to work with. Really not any more work time
> to build a larger one than a small one.

It's not too much more work, but everything gets much more expensive very fast. The biggest price jump is when you want to go above 100 psi. No more copper or flare fittings, everything has to be steel and higher pressure rated off the shelf parts are way more expensive.

>When I
> get going on my 2nd steam truck it will be on
> another 4x4 vehicle chassis, I already have an
> old junk nissan pathfinder that would work.
> but I've decided on a yarrow type boiler on front
> where it's more convenient to feed from the
> drivers seat, and lower profile better suited to a
> wood fire in the middle. and a custom low
> profile cast iron engine built to fit underneath.
> (like a 2 cy double acting opposed engine that
> lays flat) The old steam design engineers said
> nothing beat cast iron components, cast iron on
> cast iron was the very best for long term wear.
> at one time I did consider using a hydraulic
> cylinder tube, but then discarded the idea
> realizing it would not wear very well. A cast
> iron cylinder sleeve from an old dozer would be
> better if a premade cylinder is wanted, with a
> cast iron piston and end caps, outside bolted
> like a bolted hydraulic cylinder. I have some I
> replaced from a D4 cat that were heavy wall and
> about 10" long by 4" dia. But I've since decided
> to cast my own when the time comes to build
> another one, since melting and casting iron is a
> fun thing to do, and not hard to do with a cupola
> and hardwood charcoal. And I like using the old
> metal working machines I've collected. A couple
> flat belt drive lathes and a 60's vintage fabco
> milling machine. And maybe make it with corliss
> type steam valves in the cylinder heads using
> variable cutoff for speed control. Except for
> the fact I found mention that Corliss valves were
> slow, primarily used on large low rpm engines.
> Maybe not too slow though.

The corliss valvegear specifically was rpm limited because it used springs and dashpots to reset the valves(and springs of the time were garbage compared to today). The valves themselves were just rotary slide valves which aren't any different than regular slide valves.

> Maybe a combination
> of gridiron valve inlet and poppit outlet would
> work better, since a gridiron valve doesn't have
> to move far to open and shut, set up the valve
> linkage where it always opens at the same point,
> but control the cutoff point with a governor, and
> a hand lever governor control to go from idle to
> full speed like a normal tractor.
>
> Hmm, just thinking I do have an old hyd
> cylinder I picked up off the road, (fell off a
> load of scrap likely) that looks like it's cast
> iron, I should check it out, if it is it might
> make a good steam cylinder for a single cy engine.

Remember that you can use viton o-rings for seals until about 400f, which is 100psi steam with a bit of superheat to dry it out.

> 150 year old steam engineering is fun, and
> can keep me going when petroleum fails. I am
> continually amazed at how much oil is being
> extracted from the earth, but it's a dead end
> resource, it can't last. Right now I'm busy
> constructing a water power facility, get my own
> power to run stuff on. Not a normal hydro plant,
> static hydro, inverse hydro power, but still
> using gravity pushing water down to generate
> power.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
July 27, 2018 10:39AM
Reuben,

Ofeldt powered 4 x 4 pickup truck....absolutely awesome! Makes sense to use it for firewood processing and hauling, plenty of backup fuel available. Any photos, more details on your system would be great. I always considered a solid fuel (especially wood) fired full size steam vehicle to be the ultimate achievement in small steam, not to mention it will be used to do work and not just a hobby. Hats off to you! Look forward to hearing more about this project, you sound like you know what your doing and enjoy working with steam.

Jamison



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/27/2018 10:40AM by Arch-Tone.
Re: Solid fuel boiler
July 28, 2018 11:30PM
No copper here, all steel and built to handle 600 PSI, scd 40 seamless for the coils and scd 80 for the rest of plumbing, along with a stainless superheater coil. but when I found that old engine and decided to use it instead of building one, a small "high speed" westinghouse design made by ACME. single acting twin 5x5 cylinders, running at 600 RPM, which calculates at 15 HP at 100 PSI. I got a 200 relief valve. Although the engine is probably only made for 100-125 psi. 200 psi to it could bend the crank if loaded too heavy, so there's a risk of that. I put a pressure switch on it to control the forced air draft, which will be adjusted to kind of control pressure with the fire. In testing I pumped the boiler to 700 psi and popped my secondary "soft plug". It's a 15-40 HP size boiler, plans from Peter Carlich. was working on automatic boiler controls last time I spent time on it. Need to be able to switch on auto control when running stationary considering there's not much water in the boiler and it will need frequent additions. When driving I can watch the level guage and add water manually switching on the pump clutch. A spark plug level sensor with LED indicators, switch an electric clutch on the feed pump.

This engine has a rocker valve in the head very similar to the corliss valve, but without the trigger release mechanism, variable cutoff controlled by a governor built into the flywheel. The only other engine like it I could find hunting the web was identical except it was push-pull valve action instead of rocker like mine. So apparently not many surviving, found one mention that they were made by ACME in the 20's. But just went hunting again and found add dated 1893 that looks just like it. [www.amazon.com] Westinghouse patent date on it is 1881.

Anyhow, I got interested in all things technical soon as I started maturing, when I was13 we were at a dairy goat club meeting held at Robert Johnson's farm, (I think that was his name) at Rossville GA, late 70's, he had 2 steam traction engines and was building a line shaft shop, had one sitting there that was absolutely beautiful, lot of polished brass, he said it was owned by Smithsonian. Along with a visit to the steam show in north Indiana when visiting relatives, Kind of got me started in steam interest, went on to study everything else technical, mainly electrical and energy related. but the early steam interest remained in the background. In more recent times I've collected all the books I can find on foundry work and steam engine design, a number of reprints of late 1800's books from Lindsey before they quit. and gradually built up my back in the woods foundry and machining capability with antique machines, kind of aimed at eventual custom engine making, they get used for various repair and experimental projects in the mean time. I have too many interests, but the primary two are produce farming, aiming at quality rather than quantity, and technical, energy systems. I plan to combine the two and make greenhouses run cheap with full climate control, producing super nutritious and flavorful fresh produce. I've researched energy inventions for a lifetime and come across mind boggling stuff that took awhile to figure out how they worked, but once I got the idea what's going on it's not so mind boggling any more. But the results of my lifetime of research reveals the whole world is under energy slavery by those who are ultra wealthy from energy sources, the oppression is far greater than most anyone realizes. What's been invented, and then classified top secret and forbidden to enter society, would have wiped oil off the energy field long ago. And coal, and nuke. Wind water and solar would be irrelevant as well. But I'm working on simple things I can manage to do. And building a fire, boiling water, and making an engine run is simple, relatively easy, (and fun to play with) and won't get me in trouble with the behind the scenes world energy police. Running a car on just plain water has been done by several, both with high efficiency resonant type hydrogen cells and with a very hot plasma arc ignition. Ships could all run on ocean water with just a little adaptation with high efficiency water molecular separation technology, with nothing but clean water exhaust. But that's also an assassination risk for anyone who might work on doing it. The powers that be will not hesitate to use deadly means when needed to maintain control of world energy resource, can't fight it, have to just let it be and do my own thing in a manner that does not threaten their money.

The need for a firewood processing truck grew a good bit when I learned of the use of biochar in agriculture. So I started making charcoal from firewood to use in addition or in place of compost for soil carbon. All the extra firewood I can get beyond winter heat needs can go into that. There's too many interesting things to do to allow myself to get old, so my primary push has to be toward the nutrient dense agriculture, which if done right can help me keep going a long time in good health. Like 3 men I've heard of who lived to be 132, 152, and 256, the first two dying of accident and dietary interruption, the last finally of old age.
Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.

Click here to login

All files from this thread

File Name File Size   Posted by Date  
temperature-strength-metals.png 63.2 KB open | download IronChief 06/04/2018 Read message
BTU per pound.jpg 73.1 KB open | download IronChief 06/07/2018 Read message