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Old Thermo Couple Technology

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  • burrows206
    Hi Guys, Back in my plumbing days I used to work with mains gas Thermo Couplings in domestic household ovens. They had gas regulators. which periodically
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 15 5:14 AM
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      Hi Guys,

      Back in my plumbing days I used to work with mains gas Thermo Couplings
      in domestic household ovens. They had gas regulators. which periodically
      needed fixing. (usually the pilot probe was burned outand you could get
      a universal kit that replaced from the burner back to the thermocouple.
      Basically how they worked was you turned the gas on to light the pilot
      light position usually you pushed the knob in which over rides the off
      switch and supplied gas to the pilot probe. Clicked the piezo crystal
      the spark light the pilot light then the flame proceeded to heat up the
      probe. In the centre of the probe there is an insulated wire which when
      heated hot will set up a very small electric field. as long as this
      heat to the pilot light is maintained this electric current is
      maintainedand so the main gas burners will stay lite

      This current progressively gets stronger as it gets hotter but it's
      still a small weak electric current that's being generated..This
      insulated wire inside a bendable usually brass 2 or 3mm tube turn goes
      all the way back and is connected to the thermo couple.

      The thermo couple detects this weak electric field and when it get
      strong enough, that's it's signal to open up the main gas burners.

      The main burners continue to go flat out at the back of the oven until
      the desired manually pre-set temperature is reached (or whatever
      temperature you have set it at. Usually between 60C to 300C. The
      temperature probe in the oven goes all the way back to the thermo
      coupling which in turn will cycle the gas burner high or low to regulate
      the oven temperature that you have it pre-set at (at a guess plus or
      minus 10 to 15 degrees above or below the pre-set temperature)

      In the 70's they had a Regulo' burner a set of 3 burners all set one
      within the other. This could be set to various simmer settings or go up
      to full heat as and when it was called for by the heat setting knob.
      There was also a timer setting that could be set over a particular time
      period and as far as I know that went via the thermo coupling.

      OK I hear you say so what what the hell has this got to do with
      stilling. Well this very old pre-WW2 technology could well be used to
      regulate a still burner or with the temperature probe set in the column
      or Lyne arm on a pot still (not owning a pot still I'm assuming the
      Lyne arm is the narrowing part of the vapour take off space above the
      wash in the boiler)

      Anyway has this been tried or not? If any one has one of these old
      cooker lying in the back of their garage or their parents garage (that's
      if any of the old farts still have parents alive) dig it out and have a
      look see it might just be a good cannibalization project there for ya.

      All and Any thoughts on this one guys?

      Geoff
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