Monthly Archives: March 2012

Oil can alcohol burner…

Two weeks back I bought 2 nice small oil cans for my engines. This one had a great deal of rust in it and, while cleaning it out, I managed to take the temper out of the bottom that removed the familiar dome button action that facilitated oiling. Irked at my ignorance, I nearly tossed it…until I came up with this sweet burner.

I simply removed the spout and mounted it to be used both as a handle and a vent for the reservoir. The wick comes up through the remaining spout and, because of the taper, is a natural fit and easy to install. The vent is through the end of the handle, mounted into a hole in the reservoir and sealed with JB Weld. Works like a champ…

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LITIGIOUS SOCIETY DISCLAIMER: Denatured alcohol is nasty because it burns nearly invisible. Because life’s lottery has unfairly distributed technical skills and knowledge among folks, leaving more than a few with the mechanical aptitude of a grape, and few with the fortitude to take responsibility for their actions, you take your life, family and house into your own hands if you follow through with this or any technical advise I offer on this blog.

Psalm 36

To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David the servant of the LORD. The transgression of the wicked saith within my heart, that there is no fear of God before his eyes. For he flattereth himself in his own eyes, until his iniquity be found to be hateful. The words of his mouth are iniquity and deceit: he hath left off to be wise, and to do good. He deviseth mischief upon his bed; he setteth himself in a way that is not good; he abhorreth not evil.

Thy mercy, O LORD, is in the heavens; and thy faithfulness reacheth unto the clouds. Thy righteousness is like the great mountains; thy judgments are a great deep: O LORD, thou preservest man and beast.

How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings. They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of thy house; and thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures. For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.

O continue thy lovingkindness unto them that know thee; and thy righteousness to the upright in heart. Let not the foot of pride come against me, and let not the hand of the wicked remove me. There are the workers of iniquity fallen: they are cast down, and shall not be able to rise.

Wilesco boiler sight glass bolts…

…are less than relaxing to install. I found that by placing the flat rare earth magnet from a child’s toy on one side of my 4mm wrench, I could place the nut in the wrench, then line it up under the bolt and sight glass flange…

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…it all buttons up in less than 20 minutes. I tightened each bolt/nut a half turn in the order shown, until all were tight and snug. Wilesco does not provide guidelines, and I am no expert so you are on your own at this point. One should take care to tighten them evenly and carefully so as not to bring undue pressure on any one point of the sight glass, flange or gasket.

Krick Model 2 two cylinder marine steam engine…Part III, soldering the boiler…

Going…

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…going…

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…going…

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…done.

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I’ve always been one to over solder…you’d think after the hundreds of brazes and solders I’ve done in the trades over the years, I’d have it down.

This had me as nervous as a school girl, the finish being a prime point on these things. Some like them ratty, others like them with a good patina and still others like them sparkling bright. I wanted this one bright brass and a good soldering job is key. Fortunately, I was able to clean it up enough to be presentable. I did tin each side first, the next time, I’ll have some steel wool to brush up the excess while still molten.

I use a polishing paste called Maas, I wish I had it in Army basic training, the stuff is a beast on tarnished metal. Unlike Brasso, it took very little effort to get to this level of polish. There actually is a difference in the finished tone of the metal between the two polishes, enough that I had to go back and redo what I had already polished. The Brasso finished with a copper tone, the Maaz more gold.

All in all, I don’t feel too bad for a first time job on a model boiler.