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Steel boiler maintenance

Mike

Joined: 10-06-09

Topics: 1

Replies: 5

Posted: Thu 11th Feb 2010, 9:58pm
Steel boiler maintenance

Following an early steel tube failure (6years)on a boiler at the club, I would be grateful of any advice on proper methods of water treatment for steel boilers as well as sources of supply. I am in Yorkshire with supposeadly soft water!The boiler exhibits corrosion to the tubes and firebox but not the outer shell.
 

Replies To This Post

jamesbunch

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 1

Posted: Fri 12th Feb 2010, 7:56pm

The best water treatment is Freestons L4. I'm not sure if you can purchase it as an individual though, I shall find out.
 

Mike

Joined: 10-06-09

Topics: 1

Replies: 5

Posted: Sat 13th Feb 2010, 11:08am

James
Thanks for the offer of help we putting a new steel boiler in the loco at the moment but wish to retube the old boiler after descaling treatment and a good flush out. I suspect we will need to re-ream the firebox tube plate holes if corrosion has penetrated the interface with the tubes.
 

Xz

Joined: 1-01-92

Topics: 17

Replies: 244

Posted: Sat 20th Feb 2010, 11:53am

Mike,
I suggest you read the excellent article by Bob Bramson in issue 124 page 16. There also several adverts from treatment suppliers in various issues.
 

Mike

Joined: 10-06-09

Topics: 1

Replies: 5

Posted: Thu 11th Mar 2010, 1:30am

Thanks a lot for the information. I have now read Bob Bramsons article in issue 124 and we have purchased Heatreat 502 water treatment. I suspect the club will also purchase a water testing kit so we can monitor the water treatment this will be necessary due to various people driving the loco and maybe not being as fastidious with the application and control. the old boiler is now being descaled prior to having the tubes changed and we have purchased new tubes and are annealing the ends for expanding.
 

ericwalker

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 6

Posted: Thu 21st Oct 2010, 7:10pm

The best maintenance for the steel boiler would be to fit copper tubes.

Eric.Walker.
 

Tim Martin

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 1

Replies: 10

Posted: Thu 21st Oct 2010, 7:42pm

Copper tubes in a steel boiler is a recipe for disaster, even the main steam pipe or any other tube inside the boiler shell should not be copper, What will happen if used is the tube plate and firebox tube plate will deteriorate very rapidly,ie the steel becomes a sacrificial anode.
 

ericwalker

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 6

Posted: Thu 23rd Dec 2010, 4:27pm

I don't know how many steel boilers you have had But I have built 16 & I've not had a boiler failed yet.Bill Kirkland built steam engines for years & he cut one of his steel boilers in half after 30 years
use every week end & found 1/3rd wastage on the barrel & non on the copper tubes. I saw this & its good enough for me. I think you are getting mixed up between steam engines & boats, But you don't usually put salt in your boiler. Eric Walker.
 

doncottle

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 1

Replies: 31

Posted: Thu 23rd Dec 2010, 11:29pm

There is a well known major professional boiler maker who fits copper tubes into his steel boilers, & of two clubs where this an acceptable practice. That Boiler makers work appears to be quite excellent, & if I wanted a new boiler in the next few years I would consider obtaining a quote from him.
 

davidholland

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 2

Posted: Sun 9th Jan 2011, 8:48pm

I have four steel boilers, three with copper tubes, the oldest being 16 years old and the youngest 11. I use boiler treatment (Beacon BB57), blow down for 30 seconds every hour or so and store them COMPLETELY full of water and, touch wood, have had no problems. I claim no expertise as this regime was recommended by the late and much respected Roy Moseley of the Peterborough Society.
 

philashworth

Joined: 1-01-93

Topics: 0

Replies: 4

Posted: Thu 13th Jan 2011, 2:33pm

This may be a daft question David ..... bit what do you do with the boiler over winter as I wouldn't have thought leaving it full was an option?
 

Mike

Joined: 10-06-09

Topics: 1

Replies: 5

Posted: Wed 19th Jan 2011, 9:51pm

I have been following the comments with interest.Although we are re-tubing with steel boiler tubes I think I read somewhere that the electrolysis in copper tubed steel boilers was overcome by placing zinc sacrificial anodes in the boiler or does my memory fail me. On our replacement boiler we are using water treatment and monitoring the PH to around 12.0 but this winter we have drained the boiler but am unsure if we need to carry out any further action. During the running season we have been in the habit of partial blowdown after running for around 3 hours and then leaving the feed water valve open to allow the vaccum occurring on cool down to pull feed water from the saddle tank.
Hasany one been brave enough to issue a booklet on steel boiler maintenance?
 

Xz

Joined: 1-01-92

Topics: 17

Replies: 244

Posted: Thu 20th Jan 2011, 12:15pm

Mike, I might suggest the addition of a std 40watt bulb left on in the firebox, and leave something open at the top and bottom of the boiler to allow a small airflow. That will thoroughly dry out the boiler and keep any damp away.
 

davidholland

Joined: 1-01-70

Topics: 0

Replies: 2

Posted: Mon 24th Jan 2011, 7:43pm

Phil, I do as XZ and have a 40w bulb in each firebox and switch these on whenever my outside temperature sensor gets to 0c. By the way does anyone know where I can get a thermostatic mains switch to automate my frost prevention?
 

Narrowgauge7.25

Joined: 1-01-94

Topics: 16

Replies: 107

Posted: Thu 27th Jan 2011, 12:27pm

Why not use a central heating frost thormostat
 
 
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