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 Wood gas tractor project

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tritowns



Posts : 267
Join date : 2013-12-03

PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Sun May 18, 2014 11:56 am

I work with what i got,,, just got that cylinder today... if I hadn't already cut and indexed my rings I would have used it...

I find a multi angle swing press helps pursuade it into the right shape.

final family pic before a test fit tomorrow morning...

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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Mon May 19, 2014 3:42 am

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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Wed May 21, 2014 2:40 pm



ash clean out installed. bottom is buttoned up....
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Thu May 22, 2014 12:03 pm



lid parts coming together... rope and silicone for the win.. cling wrap between anything I want to separate easily

I suppose if I get the lid hinge and hold down finished nothing is really stopping me from flaring... Hmmmmm we'll see...
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Fri May 23, 2014 5:50 am

.

finished reactor
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gadily
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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Fri May 23, 2014 6:26 am

now thats looking really nice tritowns
is that blue handle where the gas comes from out of the system
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Fri May 23, 2014 7:39 am

No, that's the air inlet side... exhaust gas goes out the other side... the one with the coupler on it.
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Fri May 23, 2014 8:03 am

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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Mon May 26, 2014 12:27 pm

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T2H
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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Mon May 26, 2014 1:35 pm

This is looking great, as well fantastic fabrication work, very clean, thanks for sharing your work with us.
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Tim Keith



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Mon May 26, 2014 5:55 pm

That tractor is cool! Thanks for posting. Gasification with an ICE is prone to issues with varnish and tar so that the operator has to be very disciplined. A modern gasification tractor might use an external combustion engine such as steam. The steam engine has no issues with tar and varnish as the external combustion steam generator will completely burn all of the wood gases. No manufacturer has taken up the project, but it might be time to revist an old technology that once powered almost every machine that moved. Most of the new steam research has been focused on automobiles, but there are so many systems and regulations for road vehicles that the huge costs almost guarantees that no design will come to production. Tractors lack many of the requirements for automobiles.

An interesting fact about steam is the steam engine produces so much torque that transmissions are often not required. Thus a major cost component and a friction robbing one at that can be eliminated. The torque output of a steam engine is near 100 percent at zero RPM. Most steam tractors would probably have a two speed hi/low gearbox but the complex variable speed hydrostatic transmission of todays Kubota or John Deere isn't necessary. Only a control valve is needed to reverse the steam engine.

You might be amused to see a modern four wheel drive tractor dragged by this antique steam tractor. http://www.boreme.com/posting.php?id=38773#.U3sJSCUU8dU The issue here might be traction but its fun to watch nonetheless

An interesting attribute of the steam engine is the bulk of that antique behemoth is the huge old school firebox and fire tube boiler, whereas the steam engine itself is very compact. Modern gasification technology could enable a steam tractor to be compact, or the steam generator might use CNG or propane. The old firetube boilers are huge and dangerous - and yet produce relatively low pressure steam (ofen less than 300 PSI). A modern monotube steam generator with a steam condensor might have only one gallon or two of water in circulation. New steam technology allows for safe use of supercritical high pressure steam (3200 PSI), which might be ideally matched with gasification technology in a tractor or stationary engine.

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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Mon May 26, 2014 11:41 pm

an ICE shouldn't have any problems when coupled to a properly designed and sized gasifier.

Have I ever made tar? absolutly... any wood gasser that says they haven't probably shouldn't be listened to. It's the working out what was the casue and moving forward that teaches what to and not to do.

I can say I haven't had issues with tar in a very long while... will I with this tractor? don't know yet, but I'm not concerned that I will. I think I got the secret sauce right on this project (or I wouldn't have been willing to take it on)

Steam is one way to go. I know my friend Stephen Abaddess started out gasification witht he intent to run his home brew turbine, (he is a jet engine engineer) he now runs ICEs instead. too many run away steam turbine events.
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Mon May 26, 2014 11:43 pm

Oh, thanks Trying2Hard. One day I'll actually learn how to weld and my joints will look than much better... still have to mount the final filter, and wood gas carb. it's getting there...
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Tim Keith



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Tue May 27, 2014 8:21 am

Tritowns ,   The tractor is good!   If I did the wood gasification for power it would be an older flathead motor, or a single cylinder model.  I can remove the cylinder head from a flathead in a few minutes, but many modern ICE motors are too complex, would require a day or two to clean.   A few people manage the tar very well, its good to hear you've figured that out.  but many who attempt gasification with an ICE have to tear down the motors and clean them.   You're doing well !

The modern steam engine tractor with gasification might be a few years off or it may never be production as the current diesel motors are pretty good.   A steam engine and a diesel engines are both heat engines whereas a gasoline engine requires spark.  The theory of new steam is well proven but the weight of current practice as well the high development state of the ICE limits the possibilities for new steam.   The legacy steam technology isn't suited to replace the ICE, but the new ideas likely could do that.   The difference is the new reciprocating steam engines use water as a working fluid as well as the lubricant.   Conventional piston driven steam engines require oil to be mixed with the water, which limits the temperature to 800 F ( in practical about half ot that ) with lower efficiency .  The high temperature converts the lubricating oil to a sand like grit.    The new steam engines use ceramic bearings and seals which use water as a lubricant, therefore the temperature of the steam can exceed 1,200 F degree - it can use the full temperatures of the gasification technologies where legacy steam is limited to a fraction of that temperature.   Currently the new steam technology is mostly a laboratory technology, it may never be released to the public. but the technology seems to be suited for a tracor.   The steam engine has very few parts compared to an ICE, in theory it would be inexpensive to manufacture, but its been about a decade since this new idea was widely promoted, yet nobody can buy them. Large steam turbines can work with very hot supercritical steam but small steam turbines aren't as efficient due to thermodynamics. Thus these little steam engines use pistons.
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Tue May 27, 2014 10:06 am

this may sound funny... but i'm kinda partial you ohv briggs... they are work horses... take a beating and I have stuck them up but typically you pull the valve cover off, warm up the offending valve and it will work itself free... a little gasoline to clean up the end and then just run it on gasoline for a bit and you're usually all good again.

that being said, I haven't had a tar episode in over 200 hrs of run time on our little genset... once you get it figured out it isn't hard to be repeatable.
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gadily
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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Tue May 27, 2014 10:49 am

i have the 5.5 briggs and stratton engine on the old merry tiller cultivator good motor to say its newish when i got it however id love to connect the motor to a generator for welding purposes

thats another project i could look for now even better with a gassifier to run it on
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Tim Keith



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Tue May 27, 2014 11:28 am

Tritowns, 200 hours is a good success story! There are many Kohler and Onan generator sets on Craigs List.  These were often sold for RVs and often don't have a huge number of hours on them.   The most reliable motors were governed to run at 1800 RPM.   I'd think a modern Honda or Honda OHV clone would be okay too. Finding parts for the older motors can be difficult.  Waybe Keith recommends starting with a cheap project, then building another as you learn.  He says that a modern fuel injection motor is easier to work with as he starts with gasoline and switches back to gasoline during the cool down, which he thinks helps clean out any varnish that might have collected on the valves and rings. He says he can sense and even hear the tone of the exhaust change as varnish begins to be a problem. When that happens he switches back to gasoline.  Keith has been using wood gas to fuel his vehicles for more than twenty years and drives across the US without any concern.
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Tue May 27, 2014 11:52 am

Yup, I chat with Wayne fairly often... He's a very good guy... have well over 240000 miles running on wood. I'd say he's got his system figured out.

My friend Terry has built and Keith system and I've driven it... it works, no doubt about it. I'd recommend his book to anyone.
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Tue May 27, 2014 12:00 pm

I've also had the luck to have Max Gasman and Steve Unruh give me some tutalage... Max's dad is in text books with regards to gasification in Europe and SteveU has worked for both APL and Victory Gas Works.

Just an FYI the biggest reason that people don't share everything they know and are working on is that gasification companies then to use the free web groups as their personal R and D labs... and if you are developing something and someone else starts marketing it... well... it kinda ain't fair if you know what I mean.

I stopped counting at 100000.00 that we put into development...

That being said, I'm always happy to help where I can, feel free to ask questions and I'll answer if I can and it isn't with regards to something we consider propietaty to our system.

More wood gas is good wood gas... :)
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Tim Keith



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Tue May 27, 2014 1:08 pm

Wayne Keith is convincing, you can't argue with rubber on the road for two decades of service!  Mother Earth News has featured stories on his vehicles.

The new steam technology is mostly open source, but 5 percent is proprietary, the details of which aren't being published.  I think the manufacturer might be focusing on OEM industrial applications rather than consumer products to keep the units from too many eyes.  I think it wouldn't be difficult to copy the proprietary features.   I don't think some of the components needed could be purchased at places like McMaster-Carr, but the materials currently exist for use in other industries.   The Steam Automobile Club of America is a good resource for steam technology. The developers of the new steam technology are very much active in that group.   I think they're concerned that if they build consumer products that the technology will be copied by others, as you could disassemble the steam engine to learn the tricks of the valves and the new seals. Also, consumer products are treated like appliances, the steam generator portion can require some tweaking and customization.  That tweaking requires customer service and field engineers that a small company lacks.  The materials that eliminate conventional steam oil for lubrication aren't new, these materials were developed for aerospace applications.  There have been extensive testing, but results from the field will be more revealing.    

One of the smaller of the steam engines is light enough that any adult could lift it, yet it produces 105 horsepower and  860 foot pounds of torque - well beyond what a Kubota tractor might require.  That is the torque output of the latest 6.7 Cummins turbo diesel which weighs 1,000 pounds.  Its pretty cool technology, but I think they're waiting for a big corporation to partner to protect their patent rights.  There are many naysayers that say that steam is obsolete, but steam is raw power and is truly the only omni fuel power transmission technology.  When a volcano blows its top a good amount of the energy is from steam.

The current plans for the steam engine in 2014 are to produce a "waste heat engine" that is installed in exhaust stacks of industrial processes to recover the otherwise lost heat energy.  These small WHE units make 10 Kwh of electricity. Its not likely to see a Honda version of this soon, but the steam engine can use pretty much any combustible as a fuel.  I think a steam tractor that was fueled with waste oils might have a market, biomass might be too bulky for a mass produced tractor, but biomass could be ideal for a stationary power generator.  

Also the steam engine burns much cleaner than an ICE, and does not require any emissions devices. Has no exhaust system, no starter, needs no battery, and often does not need a transmission.  No expensive injector pump as in a diesel. The steam engine can be overhauled in a half day.  There is no engine sludge inside the motor, no carbon buildup in the cylinders.  But the steam generator side of the engine requires tweaking for different types of fuel, just a wood stoves might, or waste oil heaters etc.
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Thu May 29, 2014 7:51 am

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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Sat May 31, 2014 10:13 am

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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Sun Jun 01, 2014 10:08 am

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gadily
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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Sun Jun 01, 2014 7:43 pm

i think we are all watching the progress of this forgetting to post our comments

looking good so far
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tritowns



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PostSubject: Re: Wood gas tractor project   Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:35 am




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