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Member postings for Andrew Tinsley

Here is a list of all the postings Andrew Tinsley has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Wilesco D16 Steam plant
29/06/2020 17:09:12

Hello Bill and co,

I seem to have screwed up with my last posting, so here goes again. Apparently Wilesco is still in business and they have a main agent here in UK. After an inquiring email, I found that virtually every spare was available. The boiler is only a little more expensive than buying the raw materials, so I will go with that.

I really must apologise for not making sure that the message had been posted. Quite why the post disappeared I really don't know. I am very embarrassed that Bill dug out his Wilesco plant and is offering me some dimensions. Thank you for that Bill and very sorry you were troubled for nothing.

At least the grandchildren will get their hands on the plant, sooner than if I had to make the boiler!

Thanks to everyone,


26/06/2020 21:03:05

Hello Paul,

Yes it was indeed that boiler that exploded. I watched the fiasco from the shore. I never actually saw the boiler, only the steam launch in full flight. Fred told me that he had soft soldered the place where the gauge glass had been. Only now, some 30 years later, do I understand what he meant by this, having seen seen a photo of the boiler!

I have now found that Wilesco still exist and they have an agent in this country (Forest Classics). It would seem that I can buy a boiler for the Wilesco at a reasonable price. The photos of the boiler look as though they are stainless. If that is the case, I am not sure what Fred had soft soldered and I shall never find out as he died at the turn of the century.

The explosion was quite quite shattering, bits of steam launch flying in the air! Fred had used a butane fired heater and no safety valve, what the pressure was when the shell let go is mind boggling. I thought that it would be a quiet afternoon watching the launch chuff around. I didn't think for a minute that he was a lunatic.


26/06/2020 16:31:00

I was given this some 30 years ago. The boiler was modified and used in a model steam launch. The person concerned didn't use a safety valve in this modification. There was a spectacular boiler explosion and the launch sank!

So I have everything except the boiler and my steam mad grandchildren are pestering me to make another boiler, so they can play with it. I was going to make a Mamod style boiler, until I saw a photo of the complete D16. The boiler has a large glass window in the "firing end" and appears to be made of tinplate ( which I doubt!). The large diameter glass window has quite thrown me and I am intrigued as to how that all hangs together.

If anyone has a D16 I would appreciate some good photos and also what the boiler material is (brass?). I would like to make a reasonable replica of the original boiler. If I can't find out sufficient details, I shall just have to make a Mamod equivalent.



Thread: vacuum brakes (again)
25/06/2020 20:04:24


Leaving aside the physics of ejectors. I have carried out tests running ejectors on both compressed air and steam and within the limits of experimental error, steam and compressed air produce the same ultimate vacuum for a given pressure

The steam used was not super heated and a maximum pressure of both steam and compressed air was 80psi. with a minimum pressure of 15psi .I used 3 designs of ejector and all showed the same results on steam and compressed air. Although the efficiency varied between designs (The Doug Brown design was the best).

If you wish to dispute the results then you are welcome to carry out your own tests. I would be interested to see the results.


Thread: Mamod safety valve
25/06/2020 19:51:27

Tubal Cain's (T D Walshaw) Book on springs in the Workshop Series is an invaluable source of information, worth buying if you want to know how to make springs.


Thread: vacuum brakes (again)
25/06/2020 17:48:45

An ejector is a simple case of a venturi effect , Simple applied Bernoulli theory. As Stephen says, there is little difference in performance (if any) between running an ejector on steam or compressed air.

I agree entirely with Stephen in that the Doug Brown ejector is the best of published designs that I have constructed. My practical results do not support Dave's speculation.


25/06/2020 10:39:08

I believe that "steam having more energy than compressed air" is somewhat misleading. Ejectors work on Bernoulli's principle. Nothing to do with steam condensing and liberating energy.

My ejectors work on air and steam. In fact a little better on air, which I find surprising. Although this is probably due to gauge calibration.


24/06/2020 18:57:05

Ejectors will work on compressed air, but injectors won't.


Thread: What fuses Warco lathe and Chester mill
24/06/2020 18:53:38


I just took a look at the Grizzly manual. Although the fuses specify 250 V working. I strongly suspect their current ratings will be for the US Market and their mains is likely to about 120 volts. If so, you need to half the current values for UK 240 Volt supplies.


Thread: Boxford motor help
24/06/2020 10:57:49

If going the VFD route, then it is worth putting in a more powerful motor, if it will fit. The reason being that at lower RPM the torque available is reduced with a VFD.. Putting in a more powerful motor returns the torque to a higher figure.


24/06/2020 10:57:48

If going the VFD route, then it is worth putting in a more powerful motor, if it will fit. The reason being that at lower RPM the torque available is reduced with a VFD.. Putting in a more powerful motor returns the torque to a higher figure.


Thread: Hylomar universal blue failed to seal oil?
23/06/2020 11:48:19

Was the Hylomar new or have you had it for some time? I have never had the slightest problem with Hylomar. If you carried out the cleaning procedure to the letter, then perhaps you had a faulty batch?


Thread: The cost of cheap (Free) materials
22/06/2020 16:31:09

I quite often use scrap material, but only if it is about correct dimension and it machines OK. I can't really see a problem if you keep to those rules.


Thread: Aluminium on Brass Wheels
22/06/2020 16:24:58

An easy solution is to dunk the wheel in an alkali solution. Sodium hydroxide solution is probably the best , but any alkali will do. Sodium carbonate solution (washing soda) or sodium bicarbonate solution should do the job, but more slowly.


Thread: Bar top "copper". What is it?
19/06/2020 20:12:26

Thanks gents.

I did all the obvious tests before asking people on the forum. It isn't magnetic and it isn't plated. Annealing it doesn't soften it and the filings are the same colour as the polished surface. It is a mixture of copper colour and silver.

I am certain that it is an alloy and asked here in case anyone knew of this peculiar stuff. The sheet shows no sign of oxidation and is as shiny as the day it was given to me several years ago. I tried some on my polishing mop and the finish was dazzling.


19/06/2020 10:18:35

I was given some copper like material from a local pub. It was used in a refurb of the bar.

It looks a little like copper and is very shiny. Quite dense and very hard. Not easy too bend either. I have no idea what it is and I have a few square feet of it.

Obviously not boiler material! I am wondering what use I can put it too. Its a shame to see it in my material store without a potential use. So what is it?


Thread: Material for a Chuck Backplate
18/06/2020 09:31:10

The old wives tales are certainly still current. Do yourself a favour and get a slice of EN1,


17/06/2020 16:58:37

+1 for a slice of EN1. Much easier and cleaner to work with than cast iron. ARC's back plates are steel and they are just fine.


Thread: Pesky Government Announcement!
17/06/2020 16:13:49

Radio 3 is fine for me, just don't listen to the few very short news spots.


Thread: Can summer car tyres be used in winter?
17/06/2020 09:57:21

Filling double glazed units with argon actually makes a significant improvement in their U value. This has been proven by some significant trials by the British Board of Agremont. It all came to rather a sudden end, when it was found that the argon eventually diffuses out of the panel, thus returning the U value to the normal lower level.


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