Author Topic: boiler materials  (Read 368 times)

Offline fourpines

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boiler materials
« on: February 04, 2021, 09:24:39 PM »
Hi I'm just getting started building a vertical boiler. I have 4'' type L copper pipe as my boiler shell , and (3/8 NPS) 0.500'' type L copper pipe for the 13 boiler tubes ,
and I'm thinking of purchasing 1/8'' thick 110 alloy copper plates to form the end caps. Are these materials ok to make a 10'' boiler ?
thanks for any help
Mike
Mike Schauber

Offline cnr6400

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2021, 12:18:46 AM »
What existing / proven safe boiler design / plans are you working to?

Offline derekwarner

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2021, 12:53:24 AM »
Mike......

This issue has been discussed before, in Australia we have  Model Steam Boiler Codes that boilers must conform to in construction and test to be issued with a Boiler Registration....so the engine/boat or fixed steam plant can be used in Public

The UK has strict Model Steam Boiler Codes.......[our OZ Codes are somewhat a mirror of the UK Documents]

In the USA, it appears model steam boiler builders are subjected to a myriad of differing Codes from State to Stae or region to region

It may be a good idea to join a model steam club closeby to your residence........one would expect that the Club would have Boiler Inspectors who could provide advice in their Local Rules & Regs  :happyreader:

Could save a lot of heartache  :facepalm: in the future

Derek
Derek L Warner - Honorary Secretary [Retired]
Illawarra Live Steamers Co-op - Australia
www.ils.org.au

Offline fourpines

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2021, 01:57:54 AM »
thanks cnr 6400 for your reply , the design is mine using K.N.Harris's book Model Boilers & Boilermaking , using his calculations .
Are the materials ok ?
Mike Schauber

Offline fourpines

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2021, 02:02:28 AM »
thanks derekwarner for the reply , I live in Ralston , Pa. north central pa. their are no clubs even near me , I would love to join one .
thanks Mike
Mike Schauber

Offline GWRdriver

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2021, 02:54:40 AM »
Mike,
1/8" copper (11ga) will be more than sufficient for a nominal 4" diameter boiler, and 12ga (.108") would also work just as well provided the head was equally supported by flues or stays over its area.
I can't say about the flue diameter, because I don't know the heated length of the flues, but probably a more substantial and efficient flue would be Type K of not more than 3/8" tube.  Again, the heated length needs to be known.

Derek states:
"In the USA, it appears model steam boiler builders are subjected to a myriad of differing Codes from State to Stae or region to region."

That's technically true, but doesn't accurately describe how things are organized.  In most instances it's true that each state has its own code for power boilers and in most cases the Law is based upon adopting the A.S.M.E Code as-written, with various modifications and additions (or exclusions) as felt appropriate by the individual states.  Historically the ASME code contained a section on "Miniature" boilers, but that wasn't "miniature" in our sense of the word, but meant small power or heating boilers, for laundries, food processors, cookeries, for instance.
As our society became more safety-conscious (and litigious), various groups of live steamers began to work within their States to modify Codes to pre-empt regulating us out of existence.  This was in many cases achieved with various exclusions which allowed our "miniature" boilers of less than a certain pressure, power, or capacity, to be built and operated, in almost all instances on a self-regulating basis.  The continued goal is safety through education (using accumulated experience, as well as the World's library of resources) and self-regulation and so far the record is 100%.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2021, 03:00:08 AM by GWRdriver »
Cheers,
Harry

Offline FKreider

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2021, 03:08:11 AM »
I have never heard of a model copper boiler failing in a way that would cause harm. In my experience they typically fail by leaking from a tube or solder joint and then are unable to build pressure.

That being said I think most folks who have the skill and ability to fabricate a copper boiler also have enough sense to operate it correctly with the appropriate safety precautions in place.

When it comes to model locomotives typically we have a minimum of two methods of adding water two the boiler so that in the event one device fails you still have a backup. We also always try to have two safety valves installed for the same reason - redundancy.
-Frank K.

Offline FKreider

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2021, 03:11:36 AM »
thanks derekwarner for the reply , I live in Ralston , Pa. north central pa. their are no clubs even near me , I would love to join one .
thanks Mike

Looks like you are about 2.5 hours from the Finger Lakes Live Steamers:

https://fingerlakeslivesteamers.org/

and also about 3 Hours from Pennsylvania Live Steamers:

https://www.palivesteamers.org/

While both of these clubs are mainly focused on "ride-on scale" locomotives I think you will find that many members are Model Engineer's at heart and many of us also build and enjoy stationary engines as well.
-Frank K.

Online crueby

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2021, 03:16:03 AM »
The finger lakes club now also has smaller guage tracks too, quite an extensive set of tracks there.

Offline fourpines

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2021, 07:11:21 PM »
Thanks to all who responded this is a big help.
thanks again Mike
Mike Schauber

Offline propforward

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Re: boiler materials
« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2021, 07:15:10 PM »
Links to US State boiler codes can be found here:

https://www.modelenginemaker.com/index.php/topic,9018.0.html
Stuart