- posted 11 years ago
For the last 8 years I have been working on a steam powered cycle off
and on. I bought plans and parts of it in a kit from Cole's power
models, It is called the Vesuvius and was designed in 1884. it has a
combination fire tube and water tube boiler.
the original plans they called for a gasoline burner but I didn=92t
like the idea of that (too dangerous for something I=92m riding on) so I
built a propane burner. It=92s patterned after the Reil burner but has a
closed end and hundreds of 1/16=94 holes in the 1=94 dia 6=94 burner tube.
When operating it on the street I found I could only go about 200
yards without running out of pressure.
I cranked the fuel supply up too much flames would come out of the
stack but not much benefit. I tried all sorts of ideas, remaking the
burner tube with more and smaller holes, feeding compressed air into
the burner, adding a feed water heating system and a tank to store
It helped a little but still the same problem. I thought that if I
used a fuel with more heat value it might help.
I tried MAPP gas which is a liquefiable gas with many more BTU=92s than
propane. I was able to get steam up a lot faster but I found that once
I got going the flame had a tendency to start burning inside the tube.
I can=92t explain the process but I notice that the heat output suffers
I sometimes had that problem with propane so I made a bypass to the
control valve so I could blast the inburning flame out with a shot of
higher pressure gas.
Now I find that MAPP gas with its higher heat content turns my burner
tube red hot almost immediately and so I can=92t blow out the inburning
I tried acetylene but it had the same problem.