Re: Olive oil heater Wicks Question
Thanks for sharing you pop-pop experience. I haven't done anything to date as far as experimenting with engines, fuel etc. You are definitely a head of me there.
I have a couple of thoughts on your wick question. The first being the olive oil. Can you blend the oil with another fuel that might wick better without the sooty smoke? Have you tried craft shops like Michael's for wicks? They may have candle and oil lamp wick assortments. You might also look for hobbiests that work with candles and lamp oils.
I can't wait until our 1 year old grandson is old enough to share in pop-pop. Keep playing, keep posting!
--- In email@example.com, "d_mcilvaine" <d_mcilvaine@...> wrote:
> I have made and refined several heating units using olive oil but
> wicks are a problem. What do you use and where do you obtain it?
> My most successful heater so far has been a small fabricated metal box
> about 3/4" square. I put a dab of steel wool in the box after boring
> a hole with an awl to get the wick through it. After inserting the
> steel wool with protruding wick into the box I add the oil. Then a
> small v shaped tent goes on top. The tent has a hole punched in it
> for the wick to go through.
> Twine is thick enough to be stiff to stand up, but does not seem to
> last long.
> Best luck so far was with a wick from a melted birthday candle that I
> tried to use as a heat source. The candle did not work well, but when
> the mess was done there was about 1.5" of good wick left that ran the
> above mentioned lamp. I got about 20 minutes of burn time and
> put-puting about in my outdoor table top pond (a plastic pan for
> mixing concrete).
> Another thing I tried to use on a bench test, was "lamp oil" -- too
> much soot. There was a black plume of it. If my model was a tug boat
> with a smoke stack I might try it again to see if I can get smoke to
> come out of the stack!
> Do not try to use lighter fluid in the above kind of lamp! A test on
> my work bench went well until the fluid underneath the tent flared up
> all around the lamp in my work bench. I couldn't blow it out and had
> to smother it under a coffee can!
> I am also using "sterno" which I scoop out and place in a little fire
> pot under the boiler. It works well, but does not last as long as the
> oil lamp. It IS cleaner, and my hands to not get slippery from oil
> spill with the small lamp. Trouble is that alcohol fuel burns clean
> and it is hard to see the flame outside in the light!
> This summarizes my experiments in the last week. Any suggestions or
> comments? My Grandkids love to watch the boats and we will take them
> down to the stream and its larger pools next week!
> Dave in PA
- Hi Dave,
My friend Google thinks you should use fiberglass wicks. You might
find them locally in an artsy-craftsy store, or go to:
<http://tinyurl.com/2y4z5u> to place an order.
To compliment Frank's find:
They have a variety of options including fiberglass.
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "Frank McNeill" <frankmcneilll@...> wrote:
> Hi Dave,
> My friend Google thinks you should use fiberglass wicks. You might
> find them locally in an artsy-craftsy store, or go to:
> <http://tinyurl.com/2y4z5u> to place an order.
- Thanks for the replies. Yes I had thought of going to a local craft store (Michaels is local
also another large chain) to look for wick material. I just haven't gotten to go in that
direction yet in my travels. Next time I go up that way ( the two stores are about 100
yards apart) I will check in on both of them.
Also, I never thought of fiberglass!
I also occurs to me that the wicks sold for cigarette lighters might also work, a 4" piece
costs about $1 I think.
Another idea was a local hardware farm store that sells oil lamps (Amish customers in the
area). Wicks for oil lamps are there. I know I bought one for an oil lamp. That kind of
wick was cheap and perhaps could be cut down into strips. But it is kind of woven so it
might come apart.
I also have some old candle stubs that we keep for electrical emergencies. I guess I could
melt them down for the wicks, but that seems like too much work!
Regarding fuel: I plan to try some mineral oil to see how that burns. Vaselene saturated
cotten balls works too as an emergency light source, but burns very sooty! Maybe using
fiberglass would be better. I have not tried that yet as a heat source since the soot would
quickly coat the exterior of the boiler and ruin effeciency.
I will keep you posted on the results of my various experiments!
Dave in PA
--- In email@example.com, "Pete B." <georgeyyy@...> wrote:
> Hi Dave,
.....> They have a variety of options including fiberglass.
> --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "Frank McNeill"
> <frankmcneilll@> wrote:
> > Hi Dave,
> > My friend Google thinks you should use fiberglass wicks. You might
> > find them locally in an artsy-craftsy store, or go to:
> > <http://tinyurl.com/2y4z5u> to place an order.
- A different type of fuel we use in my high school chemistry class is Biodiesel made from
soybean oil. I have had to design my own fuel tank to use with our wooden putt-putts, I
use 3/4" copper end-caps from the hardware store.
For wicking material, I went to a local candle making supply store and bought 3 feet of
wick for about $1.50 which should last me the rest of my teaching career!
I'll try to attach some photos but if not, visit my link pasted below:
I have also used straight vegetable oil as a fuel but it can be a little more smokey.
St. Louis, MO