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Old 05-18-2011, 01:07 PM
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fishguts fishguts is offline
Motorized Bicycle Elite Member
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: southeastern MA
Posts: 313
Default Re: Something new and kinda sorta 100 years old looking

Originally Posted by bchowk View Post
Smash valve!! Been following this thread with some interest and never quite got my head around how it was going to work on steam...GENIUS!! I must build a steam generator now...COOL.

Fishguts, from what I saw on the web looks like they all have a big flywheel, need a little push to get started and then slowly gain speed. I'm assuming that you have it out of gear? Is it just stuck if give the flywheel a little nudge?

You are CLEARLY some kind of mad genius or something I mean no disrespect if my inquiry is too basic, just curious is the 100 psi enough to give it that intial kick to get the inertia rolling without a little nudge.

Thanks for this AWSOME thread, your opening whole new worlds of imagination to me out here.

Glad you're getting a kick out of this madness ... I am too, and I'm experimenting and learning as I go. The burner/boiler/water feed works great, although I'm still unsure it works automatically as I intend yet. Adding the dump valve near the engine worked out, too. Now I can drain off excess water until I get pure steam. I'm going to pull off the head an grind down the sides of the tappet shaft that goes up into the check valve. I know I have minimal space around it as it is and that may be limiting the incoming steam. The engine should run on as little as 15psi and I'm running 100psi, so that's not an issue. As a single-action steam engine, it won't be self starting, so yes, I'm spinning the flywheel over (with a stick) to get it to start cycling. I haven't hooked the engine up to the jackshaft yet so it can freewheel, so no restriction there. I just think I need to get a good shot of steam going at the right point and it will go. It acts like it wants to start chugging along, but just can't get past TDC. Now, having said that, I do have a large degree of skepticism and thus, a plan "B". It makes little mechanical sense to me that a slam valve would work very well (although I've seen videos showing it does) in that it opens the steam well before TDC, an equal amount on either side of TDC actually. My only guess is that the inertia of a turning engine beats the incoming steam enough to allow it to overcome the pressure. In the world of real steam engines, you want that steam coming in no more than about 5 degrees BTDC and hanging in there for maybe 3/4 of the power stroke. But I'll give this another go before I rig up an external valve system. The trick is to just keep messing with it until it works.
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