Something new and kinda sorta 100 years old looking

Discussion in 'Motorized Cruiser Bicycles' started by fishguts, Sep 13, 2010.

  1. Infernobyrd

    Infernobyrd New Member

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    This is gonna be awesome! I'm like shaking with anticipation to see the finished product.
     
  2. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    Picked up two 6" x 4" stove pipe reducers and a 4" X 3" and 24" of 3" pipe. I disassembled a 6" X 4" and the 4" X 3" reducers, welded the angled collars together and discovered that the 6" end would snap right into a groove inside the top of the 6" insulated chimney pipe. Things don't usually work that way for me. If I had planned it there would be no way it would have fit like that! Then slipped the other 6" X 4" reducer in the bottom end. This is where the burner will be and the 4" section will make a nice spot to position it. This reducer is removable so the coil will be slid in from the bottom. When it sits in the bracket (my next project) and is clamped in place everything will be secure. I sanded down the shiny stainless and painted the ends with header paint and the body with regular satin black. The outside of the insulated pipe doesn't need high-heat paint. I'll probably welded a piece of angle iron vertically between the stays to provide a rack upon which to secure two brass straps for the boiler and the assorted hardware that will be plumbed to it.

    I mocked it up a little to get an idea of how it might look. I'll be using a different headlight and seat, something in brown leather with copper rivets probably. The boiler sticks out from the side about 12". The stack will get shortened a good bit. I'll be building a wood and brass box for the other side to balance it some. It will contain a motorcycle battery, high pressure water pump and the electrical stuff, perhaps a 12v-110v inverter to power a steam solenoid to serve as the power valve on the head. Maybe.

    Cool low profile tires are for racing purposes. laff

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    #102 fishguts, Nov 17, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2010
  3. rockdoc

    rockdoc New Member

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    I AM on the right site!. Vdubs n motorized bikes, AND I have a photo of Mom on her Royal Enfield in England during WW2. I'm startin to feel at home LOL

     

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  4. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    Oh wow - way nice Bug there, man. Feel free to post a front shot, too. Mmmm ... five-spoke Sprintstars - about the best looking wheels you can put on a Bug. Always wanted a set.

    I think there must be some kind of mechanical tinkerer connection between VW's and MB's, kinda like two symptoms of the same disease.

    Glad I'm not the only sicko!
     
    #104 fishguts, Nov 18, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2010
  5. rockdoc

    rockdoc New Member

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    Okay Fishguts but ....... don't want to hijack your thread, it is fer bikes, but here you go sir. I do love the progress on your bike. Just starting my first 4 stroke in a Nirve Kilroy.... very excited. Thanks for, yet more, inspiration on mine. Learning a lot here. Great site. Rockdoc


     

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  6. IamTheBear

    IamTheBear New Member

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    it's gotta be the aircooled engines it is a sickness
     
  7. rockdoc

    rockdoc New Member

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    Ha ha, you may be right. Just noticed clock and thought you were up way early this A.M. {07:20 here}, but then noticed where you are. I have a good excuse as I am on side of the Continental divide on a mountain in north western Canada. COLD morning here at -18 Celsius / huge snowfall thru the night. I am a geologist on an exploration drilling rig and have been wire line logging a well all night. Bed soon. Looking forward to your progress! Thanks "F" guts.
    OOPs I mean IAMTHEBEAR.... long night......
     
    #107 rockdoc, Nov 18, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2010
  8. Goat Herder

    Goat Herder Gutter Rider

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    Wow that bike looks Awesome. You really captured unique look there a I likes it.(^)
     
  9. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    That beetle is absolutely gorgeous. I've owned a lot of VW's over the years but never anything quite that nice.

    My days usually start pretty early - up at 4:30 AM and head out to serve breakfast to the homeless pretty much every Monday through Saturday. On Sundays I sleep in until 5:00 AM! Woo-hoo!

    Sounds like about -4 degrees Fahrenheit ... brrrr for November yet.

    My son-in-law is an engine room engineer on a drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico - the one that plugged that nasty leak down there.

    Don't worry about posting VW's here - heck, I hijack my own thread!
     
  10. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    20 minute job - wound the boiler coil. The lower portion is a spiral column that decrease in diameter as it goes up, then halfway up the coil, the tubing is wound as several layers of concentric circles. I don't invent this pattern, but copied a design that is used by a professional monotube boiler maker. The difference is, he fires his boilers with wood and I will use propane and this one is about 1/4 the size of what he makes. Mine also uses smaller diameter tubing. I was surprised to get the entire 50' roll to fit. Next, I get to do the tedious task of wiring the coils together to make them compact and stable. The wires will hold the coils in position but will also keep them separated so the heat can flow through.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  11. rockdoc

    rockdoc New Member

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    Looking wild fishguts. Just how much heat is this thing gonna generate near "the family jewels"?. Pop off valve?. You are, sir, a brave pioneer. I am stuck to this thread.
     
  12. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    I don't plan on straddling the boiler, that's for sure! I will be cutting down the stack so I can swing my leg over it to get on the bike and that moment of passage better be a quick one!

    I'm thinking of setting the relief valve at 125 psi. It will exhaust to the ground back by the boiler. The steam line to the motor will certainly be hot so I'll plumb it close to the frame and may need to insulate it. Actually, that would probably help efficiency. Looks like I'll be removing the fins from the motor when it gets here because steam cylinders like to run hot.

    This might be a good winter bike!
     
  13. corgi1

    corgi1 New Member

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    is this a hot water or a steam boiler,do you have the site that you read up on this,I would like to read it's imfo,if its steam or water,I am very interested.
     
  14. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    It's steam. I mean it goes in as water and comes out as steam so I guess it's a 50% water boiler and a 50% steam boiler - laff

    It takes steam to provide enough psi to drive a piston. At 125 psi it will be a pretty mild system, but there still have to be a lot of safeguards as steam is wicked dangerous.

    It also isn't exactly cheap. I do all my own work, but the proper pressure relief valve will be $100 as will the water pump. I have $100 in the boiler. Then there's a motorcycle battery, check valves, the motor, throttle valve and gauges, etc. It will probably run over $500 in parts.

    I can't point you to any particular web site because what I've learned about doing this I've taken from all over the place, including working on a steam saw mill way back. There's a lot on the web in terms of steam history and theory and there's even a steam powered car site, but not much of it applies exactly to this because of the scale. For instance, I was reading on the steam car site recently and they were going through the details of building a 4200 lb. vehicle. Well, the basic concept applies but not much else. Fully dressed, this bike will still probably weigh under 50 lbs. So I assume it has more in common with what is called "live steam" which is those neat table top model steam engines. There are a couple references on the web to steam bikes (maybe two or three) but I couldn't find any real details. The one I saw the most of is from the 19th century and it's a traditional boiler job. The boiler on my bike (modeled somewhat on a larger boiler I found on a green energy site) is what's called "monotube" because it doesn't have a reservoir of hot water/steam in it, just a coil. It's supposed to be a lot safer. Traditional boilers require a boiler inspection by some official agency, but I read somewhere this type of boiler doesn't require it. Not sure about that, but I'll find out.

    What I'm saying is you're going to have to do your own research since as far as I know there just isn't a single source out there with all the answers. There's a fair amount of guess work with what I'm doing and there's no guarantee it's even going to work. Like I said earlier, if it hisses and makes clouds of steam I'll be thrilled. If it actually powers the bike it will be a plus.

    I did get the initial idea for converting a 2-stroke to steam from some clips on YouTube, but most of these guys are running motors on compressed air and there are some important differences (particularly ideal operating cylinder temp.). You can also Google "steam 2-stroke" and find a couple functional steam converted 2-stroke motors. But I didn't find anyone who took what they were working on much beyond the bench mounted research stage. In some places, development abruptly stopped altogether. I assume those guys probably blew up in a cloud of steam and cast iron shrapnel!

    Follow along and see if this one works out and start surfing the net a bunch and going to the library. That this isn't exactly a popular conversion should tell you something. I'd say the likelihood of it being anywhere close to practical is pretty remote. But it is a bunch of fun figuring out how to put it together. I enjoy this a lot more than owning things, so when this bike is done, I'll probably sell it and build another one.

    Do your homework and be sure you're building something safe.
     
    #114 fishguts, Nov 19, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2010
  15. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    Welded together a bracket today to support the bottom of the boiler. This I'll eventually weld to a supporting framework on the stays.

    [​IMG]

    I also thought the 3" stack looked like overkill so I welded a 3" X 2" washer to a piece of 2" exhaust pipe and then welded it to the 3" reducer on the boiler. Big improvement. I will probably shorten it some more.

    [​IMG]
     
    #115 fishguts, Nov 19, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2010
  16. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    Welded a piece of angle iron vertically between the chain stay and the former gas-tank-behind-the-seat-bracket. That previously discarded part of the project has now come in handy. I'll have to make a rack out of it and it may be useful as a place to mount some steam hardware. Welded the boiler support ring to the angle iron and added a support rod. The angle iron meets the ring at a right angle because there will be two brass straps on the boiler that need a flat vertical place to bolt into. I mounted the boiler slightly higher than was shown in the mock-up photos in order to keep it out of the way of the rear axle/nut.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  17. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    Soon-to-be-steam engine arrived today. The 49cc motor I ordered came with a "68.5cc" tag on the side. Hmmm. Oh well.

    Had a ton of fun ripping this thing apart and busting off the cooling fins. Steam engines like to run hot, just the opposite of IC engines. Back in the day, some even had preheat jackets around them where steam passed through before entering the cylinder. If the cylinder is too cold the steam loses it's power almost instantly as it condenses.

    The piston had to come out because I'm adding a valve tappet on top of it to actuate a reed valve in what will be a modified head.

    Tomorrow I'll take an angle grinder and dremel tool to the block and remove all the unnecessary castings. I won't need the clutch or cross shaft or magneto. It will have a fairly heavy pulley on the left side (steam engines like some mass on the crank) and that will drive a belt to a Whizzer-type pulley on the wheel. That's it - no jackshaft or anything, just a two pulley system. "The clutch" will be a lever with a roller at the lower end that tensions the belt. Real old school.

    QUESTION: What size pulley should I put on the motor to mimic the stock gearing? Of course, I'm assuming the stock gearing (generic bike kit) is correct for this bike, but that's a total guess. The rear pulley is 14.5" (inside the groove).

    Here's the victim:
    [​IMG]


    Here's after I had some fun:
    [​IMG]
     
  18. IamTheBear

    IamTheBear New Member

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    Have you thought about back filling what's left if the cooling fins to create more of a solid block. That should help trap all sorts of heat. Also i really like the look of the brackets, the curves instead of just straight pieces welded at angles.
     
  19. fishguts

    fishguts New Member

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    Now that's an interesting idea, but what would I use to create mass that could be shaped and hold up to heat? Maybe just make an insulation blanket for it?
     
  20. corgi1

    corgi1 New Member

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    aluminin weld rod?and insulated shield
     

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