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Meths burner wont burn !
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flyte


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:46 pm    Post subject: Meths burner wont burn ! Reply with quote

I've been keep going back to this for a couple of weeks and getting nowhere. I made a burner for my Stuart 500 boiler, brass tank, copper pipe burner tube and filler/air vent. I cut the slots with a piercing saw so they were pretty fine. Bought some wick off Ebay, cut it so a couple of inches went into the tank and it filled the tube, end cap is a good push fit.  Tried to light it......nothing, not a flicker, tried warming it up with my torch.....nothing !
My meths had been lying around for quite a while so I bought a new bottle, still nothing. bought another wick thinking it was maybe not intended for meths, this one came from Germany and I'm sure other people use the same ones, still no joy.
Next I cut the slots a little bigger with a junior hacksaw, still not a flicker. Opened the slots up a little with a file...... nothing ! it just wont light.
I took a piece of 5/16 copper pipe and slotted in one of the wicks, it burnt with a yellowish flame, not a nice blue one, it lasted around 1 minute and went out leaving the wick completely burnt to ash and smoldering. (pics below)
So I've tried different wicks, different meths, loosened the filler cap and even flooded the tube but it wont burn.
Any ideas ?
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Les


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any pictures?
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flyte


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote


[/img]

the top pic is the trial with a piece of pipe to show how it turned to ash in around 1 minute


Last edited by flyte on Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:55 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Les


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is the tank big enough?
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flyte


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think so, it's twice the depth of the pipe.
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Roly Williams


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The only thing I can think of is that the slots look a bit on the thin side, compared with ones I have of similar design.
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flyte


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll try opening the slots a bit more, nothing to loose now. I still dont understand why the wick I tried in the small pipe went so badly and burnt to ash, its just weird, it should have burnt cleanly and for much longer.
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MrMamod


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have had a few of these either Stuart or Stuart Type meths burners and a couple of them I had to redo the slits as they were not wide enough and I also renewed the cotton wool inside the burner tube  
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Dampfzauberer


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry if this is a dumb question, but:
Did you try and light your meths directly? Like soak a little cosmetic pad with meths and place it on a plate and light it.
Just to be sure your meths is still good, you know?
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flyte


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks MrMamod, I was thinking about trying cotton wool or fiber glass insulation. Tomorrow I'll open the slots and try both, I'm not going to be beat by a burner  
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flyte


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Dampfzauberer, yes I tried some in a bowl, cant say I was too impressed, but it lit and burnt, since then I bought a new bottle of meths just in case but its just the same.
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Mamman


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I  agree with Roly, the slots should be opened up to about 1.5mm, but as Les said, the tank looks very small for the diameter of the wick tube.   Also, the wick should lay on the bottom of the tank, but not be so long that it fills it. I had the same trouble with a Bowman type burner which I had made, although the opening is a slot the length of the tube, rather than slots across. I found that the problem was the wick was too tight a fit  in the tube, and pulled the outer sleeve off the wick and just used the internal strands. It now burns hot enough to steam a large Bowman M101 boiler!
                   
                                    Chris.
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flyte


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 8:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Mamman, lots of good advice coming my way, much appreciated. I think my main problem was using copper tube instead of brass, the copper is taking away heat and possibly acting as a condenser, I now see condensation forming on the tube even when I try to light it.  The slots need work also, along with the wick material.

I'll have a play around today with it but I think it might sensible to scrap it and start again  
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The Denying Dutchman


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For whatever reason is the wick not able to soak up enough meths to avoid it from burning up, maybe the wick is too tightly inside the tube or too tightly at the point where it enters the tube?
Fuel tank size shouldn't matter, that only determines how long the burner keeps alight.
(I assume your vent hole is large enough.)
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flyte


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Dutchman, I've had 3 different wicks in the burner, slack and tight, and all going right through into the tank. Meths is getting through, you can see it in the slots, I've even had it dripping from the tube when I tilt it, but it wont light. I'm pretty sure most of the problem is with the copper tube.
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