Posted 15 days ago
I have this steam power unit for several years now. I was willed it from my best friends estate. Although it is quite heavy (approx. 150 lbs.) I have taken it to display at the Cabin Fever Expo shows in York, PA and Lebanon, PA. At these shows, they must be run on air supplied by the show facilities.
I always wanted to run it on coal fired steam, and even though it has all of the amenities, including new boiler tubes that my friend had installed by a certified boiler inspector, I just never got around to doing it until now. I am getting older now, and I decided that if I am going to run this steam plant on steam, I better do it now, when I still can. To do this, You have to be very safety conscious because steam really is a tempest in a teapot, and a boiler explosion of this size boiler, would be very disastrous to the operator and any body within a 100 ft. area. I have met all of this criteria except for doing a hydrostatic pressure test. I purchased a hydrostatic pressure test pump. To do this, you fill the boiler to the very top with water, (because water cannot compress, and a leak would result in a stream of leaking water and not an explosion). You than pump the pressure up to the pressure point that you desire. If the pressure holds for 10 or more minutes, the boiler is safe.
after acquiring a pressure test pump this spring, I intend to water pressure test the boiler to 300 psi. This should be high enough, because I intend to run the boiler no higher than 100 psi. I can than feel safe to operate the boiler by steam.
The photos show that it has all of the double safety features that a steam boiler (full size or model size) should have, that is : two forms of supplying water to the boiler, (I have both a hand pump and a steam powered pump), also two ways to assure the level of the water in the boiler, (I have a water sight gauge and a three level water valve set-up), I also have two pressure relief valves, one set to 90 psi. and the other set at 100 psi. I think that I have covered all of the bases and I am ready to begin on this endeavor.
Sorry about the sideways photo, I can't seem to get it to stand up right. One of the photos show the steam powered water pump, and you can see the water supply tank behind it. You can see the a vertical Sipp engine, powered by a approx. 30" tall Sipp boiler. I have all brass plumbing and a small brass lubricator (high on the boiler, near the steam whistle).
Wish me luck on this project.