I have built a burner using all info gained from Ron Reil's fantastic
web site, but I have a problem getting the damn thing to run . Sure it
will ignite and burn but the flame is all over place,nothing like what
I seen as examples of a good flame with a nice well defined inner
cone,... plus the ignition point is only about 50-70 mm (2-3in) from
the jet in the burner tube . Is this right???
My burner specs are :- 1.25" burner tube X 12" , 2" bell reducer , jet
sizes from 1mm to 1.5mm.
Any ideas or help would be gratefully welcome .....
Greg in OZ
Which burner are you building? This is the one I have found quite
'd like to try out the other designs, but they never seem to come high
enough on the priority list.
Assuming the above is the burner you are using....
I use this burner as drawn, with some mods to how the jet is supported.
1mm sounds about right; I use a #58 drill. The flame should be as
pictured various places--starting at the end of the burner flare,
nowhere near the jet. If you are using this burner, your burner tube
sounds pretty big.
If the pipe sizing isn't your problem, it might be jet alignment or
burner flare position. Jet alignment can be checked by hooking up the
jet to water under some pressure. It should squirt a nice jet of water
straight down the tube. I start with my burner flare halfway onto the
tube--in other words, for a 3" flare, 1.5" is overlapping the tube. I
adjust back and forth to find the extremes of operation and pick the middle.
Write back with some more details and we'll (the group) figure this out.
The burner design is one of Rupert Wenigs
The address below is a drawing of the burner. ( sorry it's not a link
It is almost an exact copy in every repect , except for the unknown
distance of the jet tip to the 1.25" burner tube..... Mine is set up
at 13mm ( .5")
I'm using water pipe and it has a bit of a weld seam inside it. I
haven't worried about a choke at this stage.... but it seems wrong
that the ignition is happening only 2 inches from the jet, thus having
the flame for 10 inches of the tube before hitting the air.
I need to go and buy some more jet holder blocks and experiment with
them rather than using the mig tip as a jet.
I have an adjustable gas regulator , but without a gauge.
Any ideas...... Greg
my first guess ( being still in the process of building a burner rather than
using it...) is that because it is designed for a furnace, it may not burn
well in free air. The flare on the end of the reil style burners is to slow
down the flow rate to convince the flame to hang around the end of the tube.
Try either fabricating a flare ( 1:12 seems to be the recommended taper), or
put it into your forge. I saw this effect exactly on a 'mini-mongo' style
burner, from memory the flare fixed it.
An alternative flame holder ( cant remember the link sorry) was a set of
concentric tubes ( rings really) spaced with short bars, at the end of the
russ from Oz
If I understand what I _think_ I understand, you are (here) describing
ways to to keep the flame from blowing off the front of the burner, and
the OP has the flame going well down inside the burner tube (the
opposite problem). But I may understand wrongly. I'm also in the state
of having read more than I've done with these, but I hope to build
something within a year or so.
Wire mesh is used on some lab burners. That would tend to keep the flame
front from coming back inside the tube , but is probably not the "right"
way to do it, since most burners of similar designs don't need it.
i know it seems strange.....but i did some experiments with my brother, and
while memory is hazy, i think one of the 'failures' had the burn inside the
tube, the flare fixed it.
if the op tries it, i'd love to know...
russ from Oz
Thank you all for such genuine concern and response to my problem
My question to Bob is.... What is the size of your burner tube/
bellmouth reducer/ and is it important as to EXACTLY where the jet
tip/ fuel hole lies within the bellmouth.
Also a #52 fuel hole is quite large compared to other web designs that
I've seen, that would make it about 1.5mm. Did you come to this
drilling hole by experiment with smaller holes to start with.
( My burner at this stage of building is 2" bellmouth... 1 1/4"
burner tube X 12" long...) Next comes a flare if it wont run in the
forge....It has been suggested to me maybe to try making a 3/4" burner
I'm tempted to do another burner using Rupert Wenig's design of the
"MiniMongo" ie. 1 1/4" tube with fuel pipe entering at the rear , and
air holes drilled into the burner tube ???? maybe, who knows ???
To all you guys out there who have taken the time to respond to this
posting Many Thanks...
I'll keep you posted, obviously I still need help.
Greg in OZ
Sorry for the late reply. I have been out of town.
The #52 came from trial and error. I started with #60 and kept
changing until I liked the way it worked. I have discussed this
burner with Rupert Wenig and even have this burner design on my web
site (with his name and permission of course).
I made mine EXACTLY like the drawing. The tube is 1-1/4" X 12" I
assembled it so that the center tap of the tee is as close as possible
to dead center. Then I drilled the #52 in the cap from the inside so
I could get it centered. File it to remove burrs. I need a lot of
gas for my forge. Welding requires a LOT of heat and the #52 gets the
job done for me. It may be different for you depending on your
altitude and other environmental issues (I am near Dallas, TX). I
recommend you start with a #60 and see how it works, then start
drilling it out until it seems right.
As for flairs, don't have one. Don't have any rings welded into the
end as flame keepers either, just a straight pipe.
If you need more help or just want to talk about it, go to my web page
www DOT warnerknives DOT com and get my number from the contact page.
Since you converted my #52 to a metric measurement, I will assume you
are not in the USA so e-mail and this group may be the better
alternative for you. Whatever you want.
as another information
resource. The site is a forum for knifemakers but there is a lot of
discussion on forges there. Just use the search button at the top
right and search for "forge" and you will get quite a bit of info.
Feel free to give me an e-mail anytime.
I'll tell you where I'm up to now ......
I have made 3 changes.... First i Had to start using a choke , and
make adjustments on the run..... next I added a 1.2 mm mig
tip(slightly bigger than a #56 drill hole). That put the initial fuel
delivery further down the burner tube tube and then I added a flair ,
cut from a soup can.
Hey presto flame jump down to the end of the burner tube , the
loud, high pitched noise changed to a deep roar , and I had a flame
about 2 foot long and a well defined inner cone...... That's with it
sitting in the bench vice.
Next step stick it in the forge ( made from 20lb LPG bottle ).Not
quite perfect .... it runs in half-second, mini popping explosions...(
flame-nothing-flame-nothing-flame-nothing-flame- then goes out......
all without any degree of control
Obviously more fine tuning required....
Due to surplus materials I'm also experimenting with the other of
Rupert's design.... ie. with the fuel entering from the blanked off
rear, and a series of air holes drilled into the burner tube.....(
should have that assembled tomorrow)
I have been to your website , and I must say it was in part
responsible for me choosing that design.
Greg (hotshod) Sydney ,Australia.....
That flame-nothing-flame-nothing is what I call "Huffing" and can
usually be corrected by increasing the gas pressure a little. Then
after the forge gets hot, you can usually turn it back down.
Keep us posted.
Speaking of burners/flares, Reil design, etc - how do the
straigh-pipe, naturally aspirated ones compare to those which have an
angle (around 45deg I believe) in them (also naturally aspirated)?
These are the type which appear to be used on NC Forge forges, as well
as a couple of other commercial ones. I have read a lot (on the web)
about the straight ones, but very little on the bent ones so I was
wondering about any pros/cons. Efficency? Heat? Air/fuel mix?
I assume that the angle is to induce mixing, and it probably also
slows down the gas also. These also seem to have a smaller intake
bell. What about the jet orifice size? Anyone have any
insight/experience with such a burner? They look pretty simple to
build, and a bit more compact then the 8" long w/ a large bell on
them, so I might consider those as my current burners seem to be
Don, I don't know about bends, but I have seen a couple of forges built
It sounds like your burner end is eroding. Are you using stainless
flares? They last a lot longer than plain steel or cast iron pipe.
You are correct about the bend causing increased mixing. It also causes
increased friction, and therefore less gas through the burner, and less BTU
output, hence the smaller intake bell. The more output you get from a burner
the bigger the intake bell needs to be, given a specific design. There is a
price for putting in a bend, but on the positive side is the compactness. I
have always wanted the most heat I could get out of a burner, not the least,
so I have never put any bent tube burners on my web site. If you explore the
commercial forges out there you will discover that some of them can't
forge-weld, they just don't have the BTUs or temperatures necessary to get
the job done. I can't see those bent burners as much of an advantage when
you consider what you lose by using them. That is the same reason I don't
have flame-holder designs on my site. They work too, but why have a 3/4"
burner tube and not get all the output it's capable of delivering. The
higher the temperature in your forge chamber the better for your work, so I
suggest designing for the most useful tool, not the most compact one, unless
you are hauling it around and need the convenience of portability.
Sorry for the delay in replying to your posting. The burner is coming
on fine now and it has been a learning experience tuning the damn
First I was trying to make it run sitting in a bench vice . I made 3
changes, 1. added a longer Tweco mig tip 1.2mm .....2. added a
choke......3. added a flare end..... after this the burner would run
in the vice. **** These burners work better in the forge than out.
Then I moved it into the forge ( coverted 9kg LPG bottle ).....
discarded the flare and was very pleased with the result . This setup
still has to tested as to just how HOT it can go, but after about an
hour of general use it's working well......the only draw back seems to
be if I want to slow it right down to near zero flame or idle , but
this may be rectified with more use and fine tuning....
Greg (hotshod ) in Sydney, OZ
Your right , the burner started to behave itself after I put it in the
forge, I also added a choke ,and a larger mig tip (1.2mm) thats approx
#56-55 drill size
The setup is operating quite well, I'm having trouble getting it to
run at a very low idle, but I'm real happy with the overall
Greg in Sydney,...OZ
Sorry to but in on your response here, but I thought i might ask you
and all the others out there about burner design........ OH by the way
my initial posting here has almost been resolved.
The only problem my burner is experiencing now is how can I run it at
idle, ie. I have taken my piece of iron work to the anvil, or vice or
where ever, I find it near impossible to slow the burner down to next
to nothing. ..!!! Am I expecting to much...?????? So far my solution
has been to work on 3+ pieces at once.....
Otherwise it's working well.
The other situation I have is that after building one burner I tried
to do another (left over spare parts). This was Ruperts other design ,
the mini-mongo, ie. with the fuel entering via the back of the blanked
off burner tube , and air entering via holes drilled in the burner
tube...... I'm using the same specs as Rupert , ie 1.25" tube.....
The burner runs pretty good for about 3-5 minutes but after that is
becomes very difficult, roars, flame goes back up the tube ,and it
needs a lot more fuel to run ....My observation is that this all
happens after the heat has built up with in the forge body, also this
burner has a choke , and this choke is far more sensitive than the
other design of Ruperts burners.
This burner ..... mini-mongo , would appear not to get as hot as the
conventional mongo built around a 1.25" burner tube and a 2" bell.
Any comments would be welcome.
Greg in OZ
First, if you read the information in the Mongo section of my site,
I strongly suggest not using a
Mongo design unless you change it over to a slotted intake design. The
drilled hole Mongo just doesn't allow enough intake air. The Mongo burners
are inferior to the "improved" Side-arm, or slotted designs, such as the Rex
burners. A "Reil or EZ" burner fitted with a large intake bell and TWECO tip
will also far out perform the Mongo. I do think the Mongo has some use,
mostly for history reasons, so I have left it on my page. But the text of
the document explains what I have just stated.
You have not given me enough information to really make a guess at why you
can't get the burner down to an idle. When all is built correctly you should
be able to get it down to zero gage or close to zero, perhaps only an ounce
or two of pressure...will not even budge the gage. Do you have a good flared
nozzle on it that you tuned in open air, is your choke setting too far open,
generally not a problem with a Mongo? Do you have a back-pressure problem?
As to your strange behavior problem with the second burner, why not send me
an image of the burner, taken at an angle from the intake end so I can see
the details of your jet and intake structure, as well and the flared nozzle.
Make it 30-60 K in size, no bigger please, and send it to me. A picture of
your forge might be a good idea too. Is the burner nozzle set back into the
Kaowool an inch or so in your forge? If it is sticking into the forge, or
too close to the interior surface of the forge, it will overheat, and that
may be a problem.
It is pretty difficult to try to diagnose a burner problem with such a
sketchy outline of what you have built. All the details are needed, and a
picture can often be the best way to check it quickly.
Don't forget to look at the following documents too. There is a lot of
information contained in the three documents that can often solve problems.
Troubleshooting Burners and Forges;
Golden Age Forge
"RONALD S. REIL
Hi to Ron and all the others that view this group......
I have done all the things that you suggested ...... ie slotted the
and opened up the exhausting ports on the forge . BUT still I can't
get the burner to run at idle or low pressure,.......
I'm wondering if this is due to the distance from the burner outlet to
forge floor ( this forge is made from 20lb propane bottle), and this
distance is 7 inches (18cm ) and it is sitting 2cm or 3/4" inside the
Kaowool.... thus kaowool to the forge floor is 16cm or 6.25 ".....
When I try to get the burner to run slow or idle it makes a high
vibration noise (like blowing air out of your closed lips) then the
flame runs back up the burner tube to the fuel tip.
Burner Specs are .... 1.25" tube, 12" long , 1.2 tweeco mig tip , with
fully adjustable choke....No Flared end
At this stage can I add something to the burner make the flame stay at
the end of the burner ..... ( I guess if I do that I'll have to open
up the mounting point on the forge )???
I must say the burner is very good when running and will heat bar
stock up very quickly.
Any help will be appreciated
Greg in OZ