No-weld design revisions

For such a small gasifier, it has been decided to fuel it with charcoal rather than wood. This reduces the need for filtration as there are less unwanted tars and gases in a charcoal fired gasifier. However, a simple filter will still be constructed to remove the lower amounts of unwanted tars and gases.

In fact the filter will be the first part of the new gasifier to be built and will based on designs in the books "Convert Wood into Charcoal and Electricity" and "Producer Gas for Motor Vehicles".

After that a suitable radiator/cooler will be constructed and then both new components married to a no-weld version of the G3-I gasifier.

For now, some charcoal will be bought (or maybe obtained on Freecycle) to test the system. If it works then charcoal will be made by the retort method.

Leakier than a very leaky thing

The no-weld gasifier was fired up, last night. Chunks of softwood off-cuts were used as fuel. Doused with a little meths, they were ignited and a fire took hold without any problems.

The lid with the blower was placed on top and smoke was soon seen coming from the gas outlet pipe and just about everywhere else too.

Sealing all the gaps with fire cement will mean that the gasifier innards will not be accessible. A redesign is in order so that gas doesn't leak out and the gasifier can be dismantled when necessary.

There are some interesting designs on YouTube that I will incorporate into my redesign. The G3-I is one such design that I am interested in. Although it is welded together, it is a simple design that might yield ideas for the no-weld gasifier.

No-Weld Gasifier Progress

A little more progress on the no-weld gasifier. The centrifugal fan has been put on top of the hopper. Originally it was going to force air through the side, into the  combustion (middle) chamber, but that would have required a stand to hold what is a very heavy fan.

On the table, to the right of the fan, you can see the variable mains supply that was built. This allows the speed of the fan to be altered for the correct amount of air throughput.
The fan was briefly switched on and surprisingly there was not much bleeding of air from unwarranted places. A draught was felt from the exit tube (top right of lower chamber). There are not that many holes in the grating so more will be made.

The fan will be bolted in place and some gasket material placed between it and the lid. A test firing is not too distant into the future.

A transition tube was added to the centrifugal fan, as can be seen in the image below.
As this is an experimental gasifier and not the final product then gaps will be filled with fire cement. The aim, with this gasifier, is to produce gas of whatever quality and then to take stock of the project so far.

The documentation for this project needs updating and will be carried out soon.

Some no-weld gasifier progress

Time and commodity are beginning to come together, allowing us to get further with the "No-Weld Gasifier" project.

The stationary engine was completely rebuilt. Initially it worked but there was a remaining fault. The woodruff key slot for the flywheel was damaged by the previous owner and finally gave in. A new flywheel and drive shaft have been ordered and will replace the damaged ones, next week. Still, the engine looks a lot better than it did.

Today, a plywood flange was added to the centrifugal fan that was built for the project. The copper piping that was going to be used for venting air from the fan into the gasifier was quite narrow. Instead, some obtainium tinware will be riveted into a conduit between fan and gasifier. The plywood flange on the fan will help to join the fan to the conduit.

As soon as all of that is in place then the fan will be attached to the gasifier and we shall see if there are any holes in the system that will need plugging. Once air is entering the gasifier through the conduit and exiting only through the gas exhaust then a test firing with wood will be made. This should all be achieved by the end of the month.

After that it is a matter of filtering and cooling the wood gas afore connecting the gasifier to the engine. We have an alternator and all the necessary belts and pulleys to test the resulting generator.

Suffolk Engine Rebuild

The engine has been stripped down and is in the process of being cleaned. There was a lot of coking to be removed. The piston head doesn't move from side to side so it looks as though the rings are not worn.

To the right, you see the air governor. The link between it and the throttle is missing so I need to fashion a replacement. The vane itself must have fallen off and was chewed up by the vanes of the flywheel so it will need to be patched up.

The exhaust muffler was completely rusted. I brushed off the surface rust with a rotary brass brush on a power drill. No sign of any clean metal so I painted the muffler with two coats Kurust. Now the muffler has a beautiful dark brown sheen and will be reused rather than buying a new one.

There is a lot more cleaning, painting and repair to be done afore the engine can have a trial run with petrol. After that it will be run on Butane then some thought on how to run it on wood gas.

A stationary engine for wood gasification

A quick update. I am no further with my "No-Weld Gasifier" project so you won't find a "Part 4" on this website.

However, I did get a non-functioning lawnmower on Freecycle last week with which to use for a future wood gas electricity generation project and it will use the No-Weld Gasifier.

The particular lawnmower I received is a Model 24A Suffolk Super Colt. It is powered by a Suffolk Foundry 75G14 iron block engine. Ideal for conversion to a stationary engine.

I guess I have no excuse but to continue with the No-Weld project.

The lawnmower, a Suffolk Super Colt.

The 75G14 engine underneath its cowling. Recoil starter on the left. Spark plug atop.

Engine removed, begging for some attention. The air vane governor fell off but was kept by the previous owner. There were no linkages from the governor to the throttle so I will need to make some. The spark plug is dead, new one in the post.

Kelly Kettle wood gas modification

I have owned a Kelly Kettle (see first photograph) for sometime. I use it for boiling water outdoors. There is also an attachment for the chimney whereby you can place a pot or pan to cook food too.

Kettle Kettles use small amounts of wood as is but from tinkering with wood gas I knew I could do better. Not only that but I have noticed that other peoples' kettles get quite dirty so I knew that a wood gas conversion would help there too.

In the second photograph, we see a standard MIDGE stove constructed from two suitable cans. The outer can fits the bottom of the kettle perfectly and the inner can is suited to the outer can of the MIDGE stove.

In  the third photograph, we see a serpentine of metal scrap that keeps the MIDGE stove raised above the floor of the lower kettle chamber. This allows air

To start the kettle with this modification. Leave the top (water jacket chimney) off the lower part of the kettle. Put your wood into the MIDGE as you would do normally.

Light the MIDGE stove and when a fire is established, put the water jacket chimney on top of the lower kettle chamber as in the first photograph. Fresh fuel can be dropped into the MIDGE stove via the top of the chimney.

As you can see in the final photograph, the lower chamber is quite clean, unlike standard Kelly Kettles which are soon covered in tar.