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Boiler making problem.

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BOB BLACKSHAW22/10/2019 10:33:43
299 forum posts
64 photos

I've got K N Harris boilermaking book and cant find the questions I need to make my boiler. The book points out that people with reasonable intelligence should understand the procedure with making a boiler, obviously I'm lacking here.

My question is that I want to make the end caps and tubes together as one unit so I can check that the tubes are silver soldered correctly. I want to put the unit in the tube and silver solder the ends to the main tube.

I've seen on You Tube that the bronze bushes are silver soldered on the inside of the tube , If I do that then I cant slide the unit through, as the sides of the flanges will engage the silver soldered joint.

I could silver solder the bronze bushes from the outside of the main tube, is this a standard way of doing it ?.

I want to flange the tubes slightly this is why I want to make the tube and end plates in one unit.

Thanks Bob.

Former Member22/10/2019 10:44:36

[This posting has been removed]

John Baguley22/10/2019 10:45:04
458 forum posts
49 photos

It is normal practice to fit the bushes from the outside so there's no reason why you can't fit them after you have fitted the tube and end cap assembly.


J Hancock22/10/2019 12:53:50
406 forum posts

I am no relative but if you are building a locomotive boiler, IMO there is only one book , by Alec Farmer (try abe).

BOB BLACKSHAW24/10/2019 11:39:06
299 forum posts
64 photos

Thanks for the replies.

Its bronze bushes for fittings on the boiler, but can brass be used for making the water tubes and other fittings.

The boiler I'm making will not get a lot of use as I just want to make one first then progress to a better boiler later after I've mastered the basics.

I have 1.5m of 62mm copper tube 1.5mm thick so plenty to play with, and have similar length of 108mm pipe for the main boiler I want to make later, but as Iv said minimal use.

Thanks Bob

Former Member24/10/2019 11:51:47

[This posting has been removed]

BOB BLACKSHAW24/10/2019 12:22:06
299 forum posts
64 photos

No pressure then Bill. as I've got older my hands are beginning to shake so more silver solder will be used.


Former Member24/10/2019 13:37:39

[This posting has been removed]

BOB BLACKSHAW17/12/2019 10:13:24
299 forum posts
64 photos

I've sort of finished the first boiler, just needs the wood cladding on it and some brass bands. I made the boiler 67mm dia with six 8mm tubes crossing the flue with the top having a few rings of copper tube for the superheater, the pressure gauge comes off the safety valve extension tube, it blows at 40ib but needs a stronger spring.. I found the silver soldering quite easy with the correct burner. just needed some practice first and confidence, I was concentrating so much on the job when silver soldering that I put the tube upside down so the water gauge is more at the bottom but seems ok. All the fittings took the time and are cheaper to buy then make. The base is a baking tray nicked out of the kitchen but needs more air vents as the gas tends to go out when more heat is needed. I pressure tested it at around 90lb and held up ok so I'm confident its fine, it has a 18g tube and feels quite a lump. I intend to make a 4 inch boiler next this is 16g and will be a different design, horizontal, Ive got all the tubes needed, just not the silver solder.


Hopper18/12/2019 05:52:31
4530 forum posts
94 photos

Looks like nice work.

I think it would be worth soldering another fitting on the top end of the boiler and flipping the gauge glass around 180 degrees. Rather dangerous the way it's set up, isn't it? By the time the water level appears in the glass, it is below the firebox crown, or somewhat close to it, is it not? The leftover "top" gauge glass fitting could then become the bottom blowdown valve?

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