Author Topic: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine  (Read 3719 times)

Offline Craig DeShong

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Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« on: October 02, 2017, 04:10:51 PM »

I built this Otto-Langen replica around four years ago, just as I was retiring.  I had little information, regarding the originals, to use in its construction.  I designed and built it from a line drawing and some youtube videos.  The column and base are of cast iron constriction and were machined.  There are no castings in this model except for the small gate valve used to control the exhaust which was purchased.

A challenge in building this model was boring and honing the column for a good fit with the piston.  Since this engine runs on atmospheric pressure any amount of leakage greatly diminishes the power produced.  Another challenge was designing and constructing the sprag clutch.  This clutch must free-wheel with minimum resistance so the drive shaft can coast between firing cycles, yet grab instantly and positively in the reverse direction.  Any slippage will, again, diminish the ability of this engine to run on atmospheric pressure.  The ratchet and pawl on the idler shaft must engage and disengage cleanly. and in that respect, they have undergone several revisions since this video was taken.

While the original full size engine uses open flame ignition, I chose spark ignition for this model.  I don’t believe flame ignition could be used at scale in an engine this size.

I performed all the fabrication on this engine, including cutting the gears and rack.   It took many months of trial and error to coax the model to fire and then many more for it to run dependably; acetylene was finally chosen as the fuel of choice.

I take this engine to the engine shows here in North Carolina I attend.  It is a real attention grabber since most of the spectators have never seen this type engine before.
Craig

Online Jo

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2017, 05:02:08 PM »
That runs well :)

Jo
Usus est optimum magister

Online Roger B

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2017, 07:04:30 PM »
Excellent  :praise2:  :praise2: You should be proud of that  :wine1:
Best regards

Roger

Online Jasonb

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2017, 07:35:43 PM »
That's a very good effort from scratch.

I'm doing a 1/4 scale too, it was just going to be an enlarged version of the plans you mention in the other thread but I will modified just about every part to more closely match the first engine. Having looked through the 1000plus photos of Wayne Grenning's full size replica I just could not bring myself to do the Lenaz design.

J

Offline fidlstyks

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2017, 03:38:43 AM »
Since you retired I bet they really miss your talents now. I am beginning to think you were a well kept secret. Did you show at Ashville ? I use to go there and met some modelers. This year they are having their show during Coolsprings. So going to miss it.
   You should bring these models to Coolsprings in another week, and to the scale model show At the Pecision Museum the next weekend (28th) in Vermont.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2017, 03:44:41 AM by fidlstyks »

Offline Nick_G

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2017, 06:47:49 AM »
.
A wonderful creation you have made there.  :ThumbsUp: :)

Nick

Offline Craig DeShong

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2017, 01:01:35 AM »
Fidlstyks
Don't know of a show on Asheville?

I've been meaning to get to coolsprings for a while, but not this year.  Vermont is waaaaaaay to far.

I'm thinking of exhibiting at cabin fever this January in Lebanon,Pa.

Thanks to everyone and your kind words.
Craig

Offline fidlstyks

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #7 on: October 05, 2017, 07:57:07 PM »
The Ashville show is actually at Arden. It is directly across the street from the South end of the airport. There are two show grounds close to each other, it is the South one. People will be there in full swing, 2 weeks from today. Take some money as there is a good flea market.
  It's called the WNC Fall Harvest Days at Arden NC.
Banger Pa also has a show the about the ? 19-21. I think a Sat-Sun show.
   There are some model builders at Arden show.
« Last Edit: October 05, 2017, 08:54:42 PM by fidlstyks »

Offline Craig DeShong

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #8 on: October 07, 2017, 04:48:28 AM »
Ah yes, the Arden show.  I attended many years ago, haven't been back for years.

I remember it was raining cats and dogs the year we went and they were having a fabric fair in one of the nearby buildings.  The wife and I spent some time at the fabric fair, out of the rain.  The wife still brags about the home made sweater she bought at the engine show. :Lol:
Craig

Offline Craig DeShong

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2017, 10:14:59 PM »
This is too funny not to share. 

Last weekend my friend (Gordon Miner) and I attended the John Blue Cotton Festival with our model engines exhibits.  My Otto-Langen model was front and center of my exhibit and it ran pretty much the whole day with only occasional stops to check to see that no potential problems were brewing.  With all those hours of running I met some interesting people who had some interesting comments.  I’ll share one of them with you.

This guy walks up and says “That’s the funniest pump I’ve ever seen”.

I politely informed him that it wasn’t a pump at all but rather it was a model of the first successful internal combustion engine, the full size built by two German inventors in the 1860’s.  As he (I thought) intently listened, shaking his head (I thought) to indicating that he grasp what I was saying I continued to give him details regarding the original full size engine as well as details regarding the model he was viewing. (With 24 years at an educational institution I guess I’m still looking for that “teachable moment”).  When I finished my explanation he thanked me.
 
Walking away and shaking his head I heard him mumble, “Funniest pump I ever saw”.
Craig

Offline crueby

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #10 on: October 16, 2017, 10:19:43 PM »
This is too funny not to share. 

Last weekend my friend (Gordon Miner) and I attended the John Blue Cotton Festival with our model engines exhibits.  My Otto-Langen model was front and center of my exhibit and it ran pretty much the whole day with only occasional stops to check to see that no potential problems were brewing.  With all those hours of running I met some interesting people who had some interesting comments.  I’ll share one of them with you.

This guy walks up and says “That’s the funniest pump I’ve ever seen”.

I politely informed him that it wasn’t a pump at all but rather it was a model of the first successful internal combustion engine, the full size built by two German inventors in the 1860’s.  As he (I thought) intently listened, shaking his head (I thought) to indicating that he grasp what I was saying I continued to give him details regarding the original full size engine as well as details regarding the model he was viewing. (With 24 years at an educational institution I guess I’m still looking for that “teachable moment”).  When I finished my explanation he thanked me.
 
Walking away and shaking his head I heard him mumble, “Funniest pump I ever saw”.

 :ROFL:

Maybe hook it to a REAL pump, and hope he comes back - tell him its a perpetual-motion-pumping machine!!

Offline philjoe5

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #11 on: October 16, 2017, 11:57:48 PM »
That is a fantastic model Craig.  If you are ever in the neighborhood of Kinzers, PA I could show you our Otto Langen at the Rough & Tumble Museum.

Cheers,
Phil
If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man.  - Mark Twain

Online b.lindsey

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #12 on: October 17, 2017, 01:28:01 AM »
Craig, we had our big show this past weekend in NC, but closer to Charlotte. Unfortunately I was the only modeler there, but I still love going. So many of the questions/comments are priceless. I guess we take for granted what we do as a hobby, but the occasional kid that shows a real interest far outweighs the naive questions if the adults.

Bill

Offline Craig DeShong

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #13 on: October 17, 2017, 03:03:42 AM »
Bill
You're absolutely right.  I enjoy exhibiting the otto langen because it's an engine that people rarely see.

Phil
I was at Kinzers this summer to help celebrate the 150 ansversary of their otto langen.  They put my model in the Wilock building with the full size.  In the photo: Wayne Grenning's full size replica and the Crosley built engine on loan from the Henry Ford Foundation.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2017, 03:44:28 AM by Craig deshong »
Craig

Offline philjoe5

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #14 on: October 17, 2017, 02:48:56 PM »
Craig,
You're way ahead of me.  I missed the Reunion show for the first time in many years.  Hopefully I will get to see you at a Cabin Fever show

Cheers,
Phil
If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man.  - Mark Twain

Offline Bjorn_B

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #15 on: October 31, 2017, 06:49:57 PM »
Wow, someday.. I have to try build one :) That is a very nice and strong engine it seems!

Offline Mcgyver

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #16 on: November 01, 2017, 12:02:56 AM »
that is a great looking project.  Whats with the black sidebars in the video?  I see them occasionally and was wondering

Offline Craig DeShong

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #17 on: November 01, 2017, 02:30:16 AM »
Thanks.  I took the video with my phone camera, thus the tall narrow profile.  I'm thinking the video players just fill their "normal" size frame with those black bars ?
Craig

Offline Craig DeShong

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Re: Otto Langen internal combustion atmospheric engine
« Reply #18 on: July 15, 2019, 06:42:16 PM »
I thought I might make this post to show some additional “tweaking” I’ve done on my Otto Langen model recently.

I’ve noticed while reviewing various threads folks have posted that some of the models have an annoying problem where the pawl taps the ratchet as the engine coasts. This results in an annoying chatter and probably introduces unneeded wear on the tips of the ratchet wheel and pawl. I’ve stated that my model hasn’t experienced this but, low and behold, at the shows where I took it this summer, it started exhibiting this phenomenon.  I got my thinking cap on and have devised a solution to this problem that works, at least on my model.

Fist, a little nomenclature; I’ll use a photo of the “idler shaft” on my engine.



In this photo you can see the idler gear and shaft, the two eccentrics and eccentric straps, the ratchet and pawl.  The two eccentrics and the ratchet and pawl fit on a hollow cylinder that rides on the idler shaft and I’m calling this the “yoke” for lack of a better name.  The flat piece of steel that attaches to the end of the yoke and carries the pawl around with it I’m calling the “pawl carrier”.

When my pawl started tapping on the ratchet I performed a very close inspection to see why this started occurring.  I noticed that the ratchet was releasing cleanly from the pawl, but then shortly afterward, the yoke was rotating slightly BACKWARDS on the idler shaft thus allowing the pawl to rotate back into the ratchet’s teeth.  Why this was happening I couldn’t determine.  I would have thought that the drag on the eccentric that controls the slide valve would prevent this backward rotation of the yoke, but it wasn’t. Maybe the parts were FINALLY worn in to where friction had minimized to the point where this could happen? Who knows?

I decided I needed a mechanism to prevent this backward rotation and I realized that if I captured the pawl carrier at its most forward position, not allowing it to rotate backward, I could accomplish this.


What I’ve done is change the shape of the end of the pawl carrier and I have added a spring loaded “lock” to the table.  These two parts work together to prevent the reverse rotation of the yoke.  The above photo shows this mechanism.  Mounted to the table on the far left is the lever that raises the piston, connected to its eccentric.  Immediately to the right is the other eccentric that controls movement of the slide valve.  To the right of that, mounted to the table, is the new spring loaded “lock” that denies the yoke reverse rotation at the point of pawl/ratchet release.  This is a lever hinged at the far end of the picture with a spring underneath that lifts the lever.  The recessed flat head screw you see in the foreground limits the distance the lever can be raised by the spring and is a height adjustment.    Again, to the left, mounted to the table is the release lever for the pawl.


Above you get a good view of the pawl and immediately behind it, the pawl carrier.  Notice the stop attached to the end of the pawl carrier that engages with the spring loaded lock shown above.


Above I’m showing the pawl and ratchet at release time.



Above, really hard to show the motion, but the yoke has made nearly a full rotation from the previous picture and the pawl carrier has depressed the lock bar and is about trip so it can’t rotate backwards.  The pawl and ratchet are still fully engaged.


Above, very hard to get a photo but the lock lever has moved up, stopping the yoke from reverse rotation and the pawl and ratchet are still engaged.


Another view


Above, the pawl and ratchet have dis-engaged and the engine is in its coasting cycle.

I got to tryout the “slow motion” feature of my phone camera and after numerous “tries” got this video of the action.  I think it shows the pawl and ratchet engaging and disengaging fairly well.  At speed, the mechanism has a very positive sounding “click” when the pawl carrier is arrested by its lock and the pawl disengages from ratchet.


While I was fiddling with the Otto Langen I though I’d address another issue.  I run my engine on acetylene and I was using a single standard torch regulator.  On the initial build I had included a fine needle adjustment to regulate the acetylene provided to the engine but I found this superfluous. 

Wayne Grenning (Wayne is THE authority on these non-compression engines) some-time back had suggested that I double regulate my fuel supply to get a more consistent fuel pressure and thus, more consistent fuel/air ratio.  I found myself diddling and diddling with the torch regulator through the day as the pressure fluctuated up and down by a half pound or so.  With this fluctuation, the engine is either hitting VERY hard or not firing at all. 
I had purchased a 6 to 9 inch water column regulator a while back so I decided to add that regulator between the torch regulator and the engine.  I also replaced the needle adjustment with (what I’ll call) a baffle: really just the delivery tube to the slide valve on the engine.  I’ve found I need to have several sizes of these, depending on- well I really don’t know.  I keep several of these tubes, drilled with a variety of diameter holes, and swap them out as required.  The hole diameter is stepped from .020 inches to .031 inches.  The most popular size I seem to use is .026 inches.  With the torch regulator set to around 5 PSI and the secondary regulator stepping the pressure down to around a 1/4 PSI I find the engine runs much more consistently over longer periods of time.  It will fire every cycle with very few misses but yet, fires hard enough so it can coast some, yet not so hard that it carbons up quickly.

Well, this is the latest with this engine.  I’m hoping those of you with Otto Langen engines facing some of these problems will find some value in what I’ve stated.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2019, 09:41:21 PM by Craig DeShong »
Craig