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New to steam in Lincolnshire My

Steam bike...

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Simon Glenn15/05/2018 11:45:39
3 forum posts

Morning all....

I've a theil mill and leblonde lathe and fancy having a go at steam. I did a atom minor years ago that was stolen before I could run it. The machines have been extensively used in my last project which was a full ground up build of a drag racer, an Austin Devon pickup with a supercharged Pontiac V8. Extensive modification and fabrication of the inlet manifold and supercharger drive put my average skills to the test, all works so far.

I had considered yet another car project but was very taken with the idea of a steam powered bicycle. I have no experience of steam whatsoever so need to face a steep learning curve.

My current thinking is to start with a butchers bike, mount a gas fired vertical boiler and longish stroke twin cylinder unit up front with pannier style water tank and condenser.

Much research needed and advice sought as to size of boiler, engine etc.

JasonB15/05/2018 13:25:20
13062 forum posts
1188 photos

Welcome to the forum Simon, this is a site I usually direct people tow who fancy a go at asteam bike, may be of interest to you.

Perko716/05/2018 12:10:29
202 forum posts
21 photos

I remember reading some accounts in a model engineering magazine (Could have been ME but unsure and unable to find it just now) written by a chap who mounted a small single cylinder steam engine on a standard pushbike with a gas-powered flash steam generator mounted behind the seat. If I find it again i'll post the details. Might not be exactly what you are intending but could provide some ideas on what does and doesn't work.

Simon Glenn16/05/2018 16:51:23
3 forum posts

Thanks for link jason, spent a bit of time there. Not seen that one before but inspired by hudspith bike which is more what I had in mind. A link to the article would help perko . I need to learn about different types of boiler and their efficiency.

Perko717/05/2018 13:32:42
202 forum posts
21 photos

Simon, i looked through the ME Index and found references to several articles by J.A.Bamford in various issues of ME from the 50's in which he described an engine and flash steam generator for a hydroplane. I only have one of those issues in my collection, which is Issue 2763 of 1954. In this one he describes the engine and associated equipment as well as providing some information on the steam generator. The engine is a single-acting uniflow type using a ceramic disc valve in the cylinder head actuated by a peg protruding from the top of the piston. Apparently it worked but the ceramic disc was a bit fragile. There are other articles by him but i've been unable to find out which one describes the application of his design to power a bicycle. I have a mental image of a picture showing the bicycle with a horizontal flash steam generator powered by LPGas mounted on a luggage rack behind the seat, with the gas bottle located towards the front of the frame, and the engine mounted low down between the riders legs and driving onto the back wheel through a friction roller, much like the IC-engined power units that were common at that time. Sorry i can't provide more definitive information.

Neil Wyatt19/05/2018 11:33:53
13829 forum posts
583 photos
68 articles

Welcome to the forum, Simon.


Perko721/05/2018 08:18:52
202 forum posts
21 photos

Hi Simon, further to my previous posts, if you search for 'flash steam' in the ME Index available online you should get quite a few hits covering flash steam generators. I counted over 20 before i found the one i was looking for and was still less than halfway through.


Simon Glenn21/05/2018 11:06:30
3 forum posts

Thanks for spending the time to look that up perks, much appreciated. Every day you learn something new, I didn't know that existed so will have a delve in to index, probably get sidetracked ! Regards, Simon.

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