It's Winter!

A special section just for steam engines and boilers, as without these you may as well fit a sail.
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farmerden
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It's Winter!

Post by farmerden » Wed Dec 02, 2009 2:25 am

Well it's Dec 1st I had the boat out on Nov28th there's a full moon and a clear sky-That's means only one thing-It's gonna freeze!! Those of you in the great white north -are you ready? Those of you in south America like Ron ,Wes and Bart need not worry :D I had about 10 lb pressure left in the boiler so I blew it down.That did two things,it cleaned all the crud out of the mud drums and it allowed the boiler to dry inside.Then I unscrewed the plugs in the muddrums and replaced them with plugs with holes drilled in them [that allows air movement and no mice wandering into the boiler] I disconnected all the lines to the hot well ,boiler feed pump,air pump. My boiler feed pump,air pump and keel condenser all have drains in them-I removed them. Then I pulled the heads ,wiped the cylinders down and sprayed liberal amounts of WD40 in the cylinders,steam chests,and on the pistons making sure to get the rings. I spun the engine over to get the full cylinder. OK light bulb in the boiler and She's ready for a snooze! Did I miss anything? Oh yeah I drained my spare water tanks! This is mainly for the newcomers-Don't get caught. They're calling for snow next week! Bundle up Den :lol:


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barts
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Re: It's Winter!

Post by barts » Wed Dec 02, 2009 6:20 am

Well, I ride my bicycle to work year around down here in "south America" :-), but since it's down into the 40s by the time I go home this time of year I wear some warm clothes... it does freeze here once in a while, but never really a hard freeze. Once or twice I've seen forecasts for high twenties, so I put a bulb under the canopy just in case... but friends who live in the surrounding hills do need to watch out for frost. I guess if you had a boat on the water in the San Juans all year (say in Fisherman's Bay on Lopez Island), you'd need to be able to drain the boiler into a rubber bladder tank (freeze proof), since it can get pretty cold even on the water during a Northeaster....

Stay warm, and enjoy the white Christmas !

- Bart
-------
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Maltelec
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Re: It's Winter!

Post by Maltelec » Wed Dec 02, 2009 7:10 pm

We had a check valve explode a few years ago due to ice. We figured the only way to get all the water out is to take the pipe off and pour it out.
I've got the vehicle, just need the boat.
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Re: It's Winter!

Post by mcandrew1894 » Wed Dec 02, 2009 9:28 pm

I take pictures of the plumbing for documentation...
Then,

I take off all the plumbing and fill the boiler with antifreeze. Neutral PH.
No air and neutral PH will reduce the corrosion.. Leave a bit of air in a nipple above the dome at the top to allow for expansion and contraction.

Antifreeze good to -30F minumum

I take the engine out and the condenser off. Those and the plumbing go indoors. I drain the main tank and all the remaining plumbing.

Then two sets of tarps on poles to shed the snow.

We can get to -20F pretty easy in January...had a major (worst in 50 years) ice storm about a year ago.....4 days without power...My friend in NH was 14 days.. :shock:


Dave
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Re: It's Winter!

Post by 87gn@tahoe » Thu Dec 03, 2009 2:57 am

South America?!?! HA! Not me. I WISH

"Up here" at 6500 ft elevation we get tons of snow... I winterized my boat back at the end of September, we've had plenty of below freezing days since then... not much snow as of yet; only a couple 4-6" storms, including one last Friday. We usually get a good 2-3' storm around Christmas and plenty of "multi-footers" 'till April...

Steamboats don't come out of hibernation until after Memorial Day... and even that's risky sometimes; Snow on June 6th the past coupe years.. We've had snow on 4th of July in recent memory... Global warming :roll:

I guess you could say we're the "Siberia" of California :D
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PeteThePen1
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Re: It's Winter!

Post by PeteThePen1 » Sat Dec 05, 2009 10:31 pm

Thanks for the reminder and tips everybody.

Here in England we are getting the first frosts, but generally it is not that cold (5 to 8 degrees C). Working in the garage is still possible without backup heating. However, I spent a couple of hours sticking some of the "fancy" work with thickened epoxy. Come the next day is was still sticky - oops! Must remember to read the epoxy instructions...!

(Another Thought - must do a photo to show you where this ham fisted amateur works...)

Regards

Pete
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Lopez Mike
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Re: It's Winter!

Post by Lopez Mike » Fri Mar 01, 2013 1:58 am

Reading some old posts and thought I'd add one small idea.

I use my wet or dry vacuum cleaner to clean out all of my piping after blowing down and draining the hot well. Opened up a few check valves and my Hypro feed water pump just for insurance and there was no water in them. Hope the keel cooler got emptied!

Mike
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farmerden
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Re: It's Winter!

Post by farmerden » Sun Mar 03, 2013 6:56 am

I know you were trying to be funny Mike,but yes I did take the plugs out of the keel cooler .But when I went to launch the boat the next Spring I suddenly had a terrible thought as I backed down the boat launch ramp-so I stopped -yup sure enough I forgot to put the plugs in!!! :o So when you make a list ,make sure to reverse the process in the Spring! We wouldn't want Mike to get the last laugh!! Den
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Lopez Mike
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Re: It's Winter!

Post by Lopez Mike » Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:09 am

Yeow!

Well, that won't be a problem for me as there aren't any drain plugs in my cooler. It's far too crude for that.

What could happen is sort of related. I have a drain at the low point in the hull to deal with any rain water getting in while the boat is on the trailer. It's only a small plug but it would add to the usual fire drill when launching.

The dock at my local ramp is maybe twenty feet from the ramp so I get the pressure up to 50 or so before I back down so I can steam over to tie up. What with fussing with one thing and another I can see myself staring at the bilge and wondering what the heck is going on!!

Mike
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