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Stainless Boilers

johndavies

Joined: 18-10-00

Topics: 2

Replies: 13

Posted: Sat 23rd Apr 2011, 12:36pm
Stainless Boilers

At the Betws y coed AGM there was discussion about stainless boilers, the committee was to pursue & report back ... I can't find any reference to a report ????
 

Replies To This Post

Xz

Joined: 1-01-92

Topics: 17

Replies: 244

Posted: Sat 23rd Apr 2011, 4:44pm

John, the simple answer is that there is still virtually nothing to report. The matter is still ongoing because it is vastly more complicated than would first appear.
 

johndavies

Joined: 18-10-00

Topics: 2

Replies: 13

Posted: Sun 29th May 2011, 11:34am

" there is still virtually nothing to report. The matter is still ongoing because it is vastly more complicated than would first appear."

So what are the complications? If you tell us it can be discussed.

A lot of commercial steam plant use stainless boilers, 150+ psi, so the technology exists.

The nuclear and chemical industries use lots of ss pressure vessels, so must be safe. In deed, some of our continental members use ss boilers, so what's the problem??

The Betws-y-coed AGM was 2006.
5+ years is a bit long to take and not produce any report!!

John
 

malcolmcarroll

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 21

Posted: Sun 29th May 2011, 1:14pm

I can confirm what John Davies says about continental stainless boilers. Whole sequences of 7.25" locos - including J.Fecherolle's last series of Mallet locos in kit form, include a certified stainless boiler as standard. I think the sequence of Berkshires by him, similarly in kit form, were also issued with stainless boilers. Jacques has a website - just Gurgle Jacques Fecherolles.....

Malcolm
SW France
 

Xz

Joined: 1-01-92

Topics: 17

Replies: 244

Posted: Sun 29th May 2011, 1:34pm

The latest information that I have is that the Austrailians have now agreed their s/steel boiler codes, so we may now see some movement here. There are apparently complications with the grades of s/steel that may be used. I'm no metalurgist or boiler expert so cannot comment further.
 

malcolmcarroll

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 21

Posted: Sun 29th May 2011, 2:50pm

What would be the situation - for example - of a continental enthusiast wishing to run his/her loco at a British society/club event if the loco had a stainless boiler? There has been a rather grumpy exchange on the French CAV site where the French national committee member responsible for insurance and boiler matters suggested there had been difficuties for CAV members in UK. And any UK member wishing to run (in public) a loco in France where its boiler capacity exceeds 25 litres MUST have it tested by a competent authority - NOT a club. The two main government approved testers are APAVE and VERITAS. My TINKER costs just under 400 euros (inc VAT) every 18 months. But I don't smoke or play golf....
Best wishes,
Malcolm
 

johndavies

Joined: 18-10-00

Topics: 2

Replies: 13

Posted: Tue 31st May 2011, 8:10am

"There are apparently complications with the grades of s/steel that may be used. "

Very true, (same as using boiler plate not mild steel or old oil drums) but the boiler & chemical industry's & their insurance company's know the correct grades as do the continental clubs & now the Australians, - the committee could just ask them what to use!!

Alternatively the committee could share the wealth of information they have amassed over the last 5 yrs, if the society doesn't have any metallurgists within its ranks, then a few members must know some who would be more than willing to help.

I know there are a lot of nay sayers (as there was when steel took over from copper) but we shouldn't let their inertia halt progress.
 

Xz

Joined: 1-01-92

Topics: 17

Replies: 244

Posted: Tue 31st May 2011, 10:49am

John, you seem to have hold of the wrong end of the stick. It is nothing to do with our Committee or the Society. It is the Boiler test sub group who discuss these things with the insurers and the HSE. So the Committee hasn't amassed any wealth of information as you suggest, we await the bidding of others, as do you.

It is significant that the Australians have now settled, as having probably the most stingient boiler testing regime anywhere, others tend to take notice.
 

frankcooper

Joined: 9-08-09

Topics: 9

Replies: 58

Posted: Tue 31st May 2011, 11:06am

There are 2 problems - Building and then boiler testing.

To build one seems to require a very sophisticated method of welding - probably beyond the workshop steup of most "home builders".

Testing can be done by the professional firms but at what price? I doubt if any club inspector would profess to have the knowledge to test such boilers - some still won't test steel!.

Frank
 

malcolmcarroll

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 21

Posted: Tue 31st May 2011, 12:10pm

Several years ago, there was a discussion on the CAV website about the skills needed to weld up a stainless boiler and, if I remember correctly, the consensus (as far as this is possible in France.....) seemed to be that anyone experienced enough to work safely with copper or steel boiler plate should not find it trickier in stainless, provided all the preps were done appropriately. I could do none of these things, so if I went stainless, I'd need to go to a professional! Incidentally, although living in a very rural area, we have a branch of the multinational BABCOCK in Nérac, with some splendid boilers in the yard! And so much of the wine-vat technology is stainless now, so there are probably many skilled welders of the material ( as in Australia and New Zealand).

Malcolm
 

johndavies

Joined: 18-10-00

Topics: 2

Replies: 13

Posted: Wed 1st Jun 2011, 10:46am

Hi frank,

"To build one seems to require a very sophisticated method of welding - probably beyond the workshop setup of most "home builders"."
The welding of SS is not particularly sophisticated, MIG & TIG being the main processes (I have both), but I, like most "home builders", don't want to build even steel boilers because we don't have the welding certificates.

Some of us in UK would like to buy a SS boiler & be allowed to use it, as our friends on the Continent have done for yrs.

"I doubt if any club inspector would profess to have the knowledge to test such boilers"
Years ago (when copper was king) a similar argument was put forward, aginst steel, to insist on only copper!!!

Club inspectors don't need to have the knowledge (at the moment)as SS is not allowed, but they could if it was.

"Testing can be done by the professional firms but at what price?"

We know steam is expensive, if you want cheap go electric, maybe SS is only for the super rich, but is that a good reason not to allow it ???

john
 

Peter Beevers

Joined: 9-10-01

Topics: 3

Replies: 134

Posted: Wed 1st Jun 2011, 12:00pm

People seem to be scared of the cost of a professional boiler inspector - but, when you consider that, by nature of their work, they have insurance etc., and that it's their job - then they're not that expensive. Our railway is a commercial concern, so we have to use one - and he charges about £100 per boiler plus travelling expenses.
Stainless boilers - well, we have the technology to do this (as has been said before, the pressure vessel industry has been doing it for years) - and they're pretty common on the continent - so it's always been a mystery to me who is actually getting in the way of them here. Yes, you probably won't be able to make one yourself - but that's less and less something people want to do any more.
 

frankcooper

Joined: 9-08-09

Topics: 9

Replies: 58

Posted: Wed 1st Jun 2011, 3:42pm

If you have the knowledge then build one!! Ask a professional firm or club if they will test it.

A private builder does not have to be certificated but any work he undertakes must be inspected at regular intervals and the materials of proven standard and all to a approved design. This is where the blockage is as no one wants to take the first step.
Frank
 

johndavies

Joined: 18-10-00

Topics: 2

Replies: 13

Posted: Wed 1st Jun 2011, 11:07pm

I don't want to build one, I would like to buy a professionally manufactured one & be able to have it tested in the same way as copper or steel.
I under stand there is no protocol for testing at present, the question is why not ???

john
 

malcolmcarroll

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 21

Posted: Thu 2nd Jun 2011, 5:54am

I hope I am not offending UK enthusiasts, but as far as I know, the boilers provided by J Fecherolles (and others) have all the necessary CE certification. Jacques is an English-speaking Belgian, and might be able to clear up some of these issues. I also understand that these boilers - up to 25 litres - can be tested within current legislation by continental European clubs. Or by an organisation similar to APAVE or VERITAS. The latter, obviously, operates world-wide. Does the hobby in UK have a professional boiler inspector whose insurance and professional requirements would permit him to test these steam generators?

Malcolm
SW France
 

frankcooper

Joined: 9-08-09

Topics: 9

Replies: 58

Posted: Thu 2nd Jun 2011, 7:00am

All that is needed is a boiler inspector now - contact any that are advertised in the various trade mags and ask for their help and costs.
Frank
 

johndavies

Joined: 18-10-00

Topics: 2

Replies: 13

Posted: Thu 2nd Jun 2011, 9:29am

XY sorry I didnt reply to you post -

"John, you seem to have hold of the wrong end of the stick. It is nothing to do with our Committee or the Society. It is the Boiler test sub group who discuss these things with the insurers and the HSE. So the Committee hasn't amassed any wealth of information as you suggest, we await the bidding of others, as do you.

It is significant that the Australians have now settled, as having probably the most stingient boiler testing regime anywhere, others tend to take notice. "


Thanks for clarifying that,
BUT & there's always a but,- surly the 7¼ committee should (on behalf of is members) be pressing the Boiler test sub group to move on this.

As Stainless was discovered in Sheffield, shouldn't we be leading the world not sitting back praying we don't have to do any thing our grandfathers didn't do.

john
 

frankcooper

Joined: 9-08-09

Topics: 9

Replies: 58

Posted: Thu 2nd Jun 2011, 10:30am

Suggest you contact Tony Wood (Walker Midgley) who is Chairman of Boiler Liaison Group.He may have more to say.
Frank
 

Xz

Joined: 1-01-92

Topics: 17

Replies: 244

Posted: Thu 2nd Jun 2011, 1:40pm

John, our representaive HAS been pressing on our behalf. We can do little more than hold up our own corner. Unfortunately s/steel isn't the only thing on the MELG's agenda.

There is nothing stopping you using a stainless boiler, you just cant have it tested by a club tester (yet). Also unless it has been tested somwhere your insurance company wont be happy. I do understand your frustration, but as I said before our hands are somewhat tied.
 

frankstephen

Joined: 1-01-87

Topics: 0

Replies: 2

Posted: Thu 2nd Jun 2011, 10:09pm

The topic of boilers manufactured in materials other than copper or steel is ongoing. Some may be interested in the article published in the Wirral Model Engineering Society 'Wirral Steam' March 2011, Issue 51, which is viewable on their website. (Find using Links.)
You will note that the material being used is Duplex Steel, not stainless steel. The article outlines current progress with a Duplex boiler. Since the article was written by Ikon Engineering at least two more States in Australia have adopted the Duplex boiler code.
Our insurers have stated that they would insure duplex boilers but they wish to see one designed, built and tested before underwriting them. This is not unreasonable. Hence if someone will take the lead the production of duplex boilers could become a reality.
If only the hobby in the UK could get together and produce a set of boiler design codes, similar to the Australian codes, life would be so much easier. Is there any difference in physics between the Northern and Southern hemispheres! Sadly many seem to make a distinction.
 

malcolmcarroll

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 21

Posted: Fri 3rd Jun 2011, 9:18am

Frank Stephen's useful reply is a pointer to better materials use for our boilers. Nevertheless, the questiion of use of stainless steel (of an appropriate grade) still remains only partially answered. And if Frank is also pointing to a geographical shift in physics between hemispheres, he does not need to look quite so far: the English Channel (Pas de Calais) is much closer....
 

WembleyLion

Joined: 1-01-87

Topics: 2

Replies: 34

Posted: Mon 6th Jun 2011, 8:33pm

This is a link to a Duplex SAF 2205 Corrosion Resistant Steel boiler for a Darjeeling B Class engine which appears to have started the Stainless Steel boiler ball rolling in Australia.

Makes interesting reading.

http://sonadaworks.com/duplex_stainless_boilers/

(you will need to copy and paste this into your browser as I can't get a direct link to work)

John
 

alanbibby

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 1

Posted: Tue 30th Aug 2011, 9:55pm

In debating the merits or otherwise of stainless steel boilers, we must not forget that under our boiler code all new boilers must be 'constructed in accordance with the design drawings'. The drawing(s) specify the material(s) to be used, and sometimes alternatives will be offered. The drawings for Romulus for example include a drawing for a copper boiler and a drawing for a steel boiler. The two designs are different, for good reasons. You can take your pick, but you can't have a stainless boiler because there is no drawing for it!

It would seem therefore that all that is required to establish the use of a stainless steel boiler for a particular model is for the designer of that model, or some other competent person, to design one. The insurers have given no indication that they are opposed in principle to stainless, and our boiler inspectors would have the option, as they have with any boiler, of declining to test a stainless boiler. Given that boiler inspectors are not required to pass judgement on the design of the boiler (or the choice of material), but only to ensure that it is made to the drawing and meets the test requirements, there is no reason why they should refuse; however they do and should have that option.

Do we have a way forward here, chaps? Maybe we can now emerge from the Dark Ages in the eyes of our continental friends!
 

Xz

Joined: 1-01-92

Topics: 17

Replies: 244

Posted: Thu 1st Sep 2011, 7:24pm

Sorry John, the reason the link won't work directly is that we decided that they shouldn't from anywhere in the forum, to stop any possible commercial exploitation. We realise it's a little bit of a pain but we felt it better for everyone.
 

joro

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 1

Posted: Fri 17th Feb 2012, 7:52pm

To my knowledge I know of no stainless steel boilers in operation in NewZealand or Austrailia that would comply with the AMBSC codes.
I own the test Duplex steel boiler which is fitted to my Darjeeling 'B' class locomotive in 7.25" gauge.
There is a big difference between stainless steel and Duplex steel, the chemical make up being very much different indeed. So down under stainless steel boilers are a NO NO. Duplex has been well tested. My locomotive boiler has had 50 test fire ups (8 hours each test) and has been running since last November with a further dozen runs, thus averaging about 6 years genral use. The whole boiler kit is welded together, including tube ends. The expansion rate of the Duplex material is very similar to carbon steel. The critical part of making a Duplex boiler is that a professional welder is needed . More technical information can be seen on the 'Sonada Locomotive Works' web site.
I think there may be numerous types of this steel avalable world wide under various maufacturers names. However, Duplex appears to be a 'Sandvik' trade name and the steel code is known as 2205.This is the type adopted by the Austrailian AMBSC boiler committee for their new boiler code number 4.
One good thing down under is that we have a common set of well thought out codes for boiler making and well worth reading.


John Heald, New Zealand
 

colinedmondson

Joined: 9-08-09

Topics: 3

Replies: 82

Posted: Sat 18th Feb 2012, 9:35pm

Has anyone bought the AMBSC Boiler Code Part 4 for Duplex boliers yet? I calculate it will come to £22.31 from their web site, http://www.smex.net.au/Store/, which seems a reasonable price.
A material called Cromweld was available some years ago, I think that it was a cross between mild and stainless steel. Does anyone have knowledge or experience of it?
 
 
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