The Contraption 2.0

The Contraption 2.0

Postby LeChatNoir » Sun Oct 14, 2007 10:00 pm

Friends and Coconspirators,

It seemed to me a fine idea to begin a new area to document, and present for your approval, the progress of The Contraption’s upgrade to a new and modern source of motive power. This new place of discourse shall offer a second chapter, a blank canvas even, to fill up with intriguing stories, enjoyable interactions, and cooperative brain storming of this new and exciting frontier in the dance of Man and Machine.

Soon after this initial correspondence, I shall present what I am thinking, and learning, about this new and glorious mode of power generation known as “The External Combustion Steam Engineâ€
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Postby sputnik » Mon Oct 15, 2007 7:22 am

Nuclear power...it's the way to go.

Start collecting used smoke detectors today
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Postby unjonharley » Mon Oct 15, 2007 10:39 am

I have my I on U
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Postby Lassen Forge » Mon Oct 15, 2007 2:27 pm

Some things I know, and some things I don’t.

What do you want, LeChat Noir?
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Postby CapSmashy » Tue Oct 16, 2007 4:53 pm

See God Sue.
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Postby LeChatNoir » Tue Oct 30, 2007 6:09 pm

Hey wait a minute...

It that like a request to her question, as in, "See God, Sue"?

Or a statement, as in, "See?... God Sue!!"?





So I’ve been doing researching pretty intensively over the past few weeks and have found what I feel to be a good, solid starting point. I found what appears to be a good boiler from here and the plans were available for a reasonable amount (see bottom of the page for pics of the guts of the thing).

It’s a monotube boiler, so its a safer design (with trade-offs of course) and the fellow who designed it was more than helpful and offered to assist me along the way when I needed it. I told him of my intended use and he suggested perhaps adding a couple of inches to the height of it, meaning a few bucks more in copper, basically.

And here’s a pic of the engine I plan to make. It's about 18" high and has a 2-1/4" bore & a 3" stroke... all made without castings:


Image



It’s about a 2 Hp with reverse, and the gent with the boiler plans said he felt it’d work just fine with his boiler on The Contraption. The plans for this engine were from here, and I have to say that I enjoyed purchasing them because they were more than reasonable in cost and... the guy is an old timer machinist/steam junkie. When they arrived, they turned out to be high quality copies of very well done, hand drawn blueprints. Plus, his handwriting looks like my grandfather’s did so that made it even extra special.

And regarding the boiler, I finally tracked down and talked to the gentleman behind the steam trike that I saw this year. Very nice guy, who told me its called the “Neverwas Runaboutâ€
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Postby unjonharley » Tue Oct 30, 2007 7:21 pm

thx LCN.. am moving so will read it all next week.. the move will give me machine and prefab space.. another small building ( a 1920s garage)w/drawing table work bench and space to build stuff in.. the cats have a 12X20 glass sun room to watch birds and other animals.. it s suppose to be my living room.. but you know how cats are..

been researching that train..don t look so good..grandfather will speak to some tribal elders.. they have hunted the area for many years..
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Postby LeChatNoir » Tue Oct 30, 2007 7:59 pm

You're moving?

To a place with a sunroom for cats?!?

That's really good, you know.

And machine/fab/play space is good too. That way Tiger Shredder & Company will have space and so will you.

Keep me posted on the train situation, as I'd still like to work it if possible. It looks like I've got a very busy Fall/Winter getting ready to begin for the shop. Probably not much fab time to get really involved with the steam upgrade until early Spring. There's worse problems to have, but still...

Looks like a busy Spring and Summer for '08 BM projects for sure (even though I'm sure I'll sneak in some sidework from time to time).

Do we get some pics of the new digs when you get there?
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Postby Gravity Mike » Thu Nov 08, 2007 11:33 am

LeChat,

It was great finally meeting you on the Playa - and I was thoroughly impressed with the craftmanship and attention to detail on your 'contraption.'

I can see the motivation for putting a motor on your conveyance. Mine was far too much work to move around, too, but it's supposed to be a kinetic sculpture racer (http://eplaya.burningman.com/viewtopic.php?t=22569), so I have to solve this problem other ways.

Image

Here is my vehicle prepped to enter the water in Ventura

Someone showed me this other type of steam engine a couple of months ago. You should check it out: http://www.greensteamengine.com/. There's also a U-tube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GZ41rKx8XoM

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Postby LeChatNoir » Thu Nov 08, 2007 6:55 pm

Thank You Gravity Mike,

It was good to meet you too. It was really fun to see other’s take on human powered mechanisms.

I can see the motivation for putting a motor on your conveyance


Pumping that thing around was tough, for sure, but it had a certain affect on all the people who climbed aboard. Putting an engine on it has actually been something I’ve struggled with. Everyone who has weighed in on the matter has expressed a great enthusiasm for the idea of steam (both for its aesthetic value and the ability to travel further), but have really lamented the loss of the human powered element.

I’ve wondered at how exactly to go about adding an engine, but all the ideas I’d had involved either disconnecting or even removing the pump tower, and I even briefly entertained the idea of remodeling completely into a sort of truck-like vehicle (but only very briefly). So I’d been puzzling pretty hard on how to do the “upgradeâ€
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Postby Tiahaar » Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:32 pm

Hey LeChatNoir its verrrwy qwiet here, what ya up to?? The combo steam/people power setup will be slick!

Can vouch that Gravity Mike and his machine were outstanding at Ventura KSR, along with Elliot and a dozen+ other contraptions. My trike floated well, got stuck in the sand/mud : 0

UPS guy is wondering (again) what I'm up to...just got a couple used mini-tractor diff axles to build something with.
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Postby LeChatNoir » Wed Dec 05, 2007 5:25 pm

Man… it has been awful quiet in here, hasn’t it?

I’ve been so busy in the shop, that I’ve not had any time at all to work on the steam upgrade at all. I’ve been reading and thinking on it, but all equipment is currently dedicated to other work at the moment. Probably will be too, for the most part, until Spring. Ugh...

However there's worse problems to have heading into winter, I guess.

And I understand about the delivery and mail folks knowing when a project is in the works. The folks at my local Post Office were mystified by the tires when they came in earlier in the year. I invited a couple of them by to check it out and they actually came to see it. My regular mailman is into restoring old farm equipment and really enjoyed seeing rusty stuff reused. He was especially excited when I told him it was getting a steam engine.

And hey... now that I think of it...

Where's unjon, anyway?
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Postby unjonharley » Wed Dec 05, 2007 7:47 pm

I have my eye on you..

Stormes have held some work up..

Tying to figure space for a lathe vertical mill combo.. once it's sat down that's where it stays.. need a real heavy duty motor hoist to move it into the shop..or off load onto a patform and move it with a floor jack..

Spent five hours repairing the garage door opener my son in law fucked up.. He has let this place go to hell.. and it's such a nice place.. I would plant a foot in his ass.. but that would only make him whine more.. So far i have only told him to shut the fuck up.. He didn't like it..so he didn't talk for three days.. guess it worked.. and DON'T talk to me when i'm running a machine.. had to disassemble and reassemble the wireing in the phone box.. the shit head had seven line running out of it.. it was so dirty (w/noise) the computer could not conect to my server..THey have good lawn equipment.. shit head has left it out in the weather for three years..None of them would start.. So far i have nut and bolted the yard vc and chipper, cleaned and painted the parts and reassembled them..The lawn mower and culavater are next..

Tiger Shredder and Rust-t-fur Nails help me in the garage shop every day.. Don't know how i would get along without there help..

The first storm hit before I completly moved.. The wind blow my carport/shop all to hell.. LOoked like a war zone.. All the hard ware is rusted along with some good tools.. I'm getting a rock tumbler to clean the screws,bolt washers and nuts.. that should work on small tools too..

Anyway, back to work.. There is a all new contraptionation:) on the drawing board..PArts are piling up in one spot..It's happening..

Tiahaar has the KS racing bug..HA HA..
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Postby Toolmaker » Thu Dec 06, 2007 4:38 pm

Unjon,

Gettin a "Smithy" lathe mill combo? If you have the room you can do larger work just having a lathe and a mill. Those combos usually have shorter travels and a much smaller work envelope. As far as cleaning screws and nuts n bolts.. have you tried blasting? You can get smallish blasting cabinets cheap at auctions. When it comes to the in law.. there is no problem that can't be solved with a boot to the ass.
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Postby Finnegan » Sat Dec 22, 2007 9:49 pm

LCN, it was fabulous to see the Contraption in action last year. Thank you for all the hard work. I look forward to taking a playaride next time. Met you (briefly) at the Booby Bar last time.

Cheers!
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Postby Elliot » Sun Dec 23, 2007 8:11 pm

:D
Heard my name in the distance so...
Merry Christmas from Kinetic Sculpture Racing Camp!

Image

Image

These photos also from Ventura in October, where Tiahaar and Gravity Mike both did good in their first KSR!
:D
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Postby LeChatNoir » Thu Dec 27, 2007 10:18 pm

Oh, man!!!

I should have peeked in sooner. Been busy lately and then got sick for Christmas. Oh Joy!!!

But I'm getting better now and my mind is at least getting back into plotting mode.

MWHAAAaaa haa heer.. *cough* *cough*
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Postby Elliot » Thu Dec 27, 2007 11:04 pm

:(
You too?!
Massive chest and head cold here. Caught it riding that trike in a Christmas parade last Thursday -- worked up a sweat and got chilled.

Image

Never mind that! Resume plotting!
:twisted:
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Postby unjonharley » Thu Dec 27, 2007 11:12 pm

don't know about you, but is Salem ok?

those kinetic racer fools are going to kill there selfs with them there damn fool contraptions

hope very one is feeling well enough to to get back to work,, contraptionating for the playa..

grand father is whining about getting to old to burn.. I getting his ticket anyway.. told him i would put his coffin on the car top carrier..


having trouble finding soft rivets.. the kind you do not have to heat.. like we used on the hay mowers on the farm.. we could replace a point in the feild with a rock and hammer..

to many small jobs get in the way for "the project".. did find the insterments for the dash panel today.. of all places they were displayed as a novelty in a pet store.. and a better price for tires,, from 84$ down to 10$.. at the same time the "to-do" list is getting longer..

didn't get the lathe i wanted.. it will come later.. picked up a nice band saw..

today my kid took me to the state sale barn.. she had to drag me out of there kicking and screaming.. just an example: those huge trunk/bus batteries, new for forty bucks.. some of the stuff is police (state,local&fed) recovery items.. a 40inch lathe w/10inch swing and a bucket of gears to select speed 400$.. made in USA too..
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Postby Elliot » Thu Dec 27, 2007 11:44 pm

:D
those kinetic racer fools are going to kill there selfs with them there damn fool contraptions


Nah. What could possibly go wrong?

Image

Image
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Postby bigbluedoggy » Sun Dec 30, 2007 12:46 pm

Hey LCN! Looking forward to seeing the progress on the mods to the Contraption! Hope you folks had a decent Christmas (sick or not) and have a great New Year!!! It's always fun to see what all of you contraptioneers get up to!!!
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Postby LeChatNoir » Mon Jan 07, 2008 10:38 pm

Would you believe that after the flu-like thing on Christmas Day, I got a stomach virus on New Year's Eve?

Head in a garbage can at 2:00 am on the first day of '08.

Lovely.

Worse than any hairball ever...

But I will not give up on the project, damn it!!!

I WILL NOT!!!

*urp*
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Tue Jan 08, 2008 10:13 pm

I wish I lived closer, I'd spend some quality evenings at your shop welding and grinding and drilling and wrenching and filing and such... all the stuff I do at home and at work, but I haven't got a project going lately anywhere near as worthwhile as the Contraption.

I'm probably just going to do lots of lighting upgrades on the land yacht this year. It needs to be much much brighter. I'm thinking fluorescent tubes, with blue covers, all under. They're cheap and lots of light output per watt.
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Postby theCryptofishist » Tue Jan 08, 2008 11:28 pm

So, Kitty Kat, I think i'll never be able to learn to weld, because I'll have to worry about the flamability of chair and cusion. It seemed to me that you and Karine might now enough about both wheelchairs and welding to give me more insight.
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Postby LeChatNoir » Wed Jan 09, 2008 5:42 am

theCryptofishist wrote:So, Kitty Kat, I think i'll never be able to learn to weld, because I'll have to worry about the flamability of chair and cusion. It seemed to me that you and Karine might now enough about both wheelchairs and welding to give me more insight.


Leather aprons, Fishy...

A good leather apron, even if it had to be custom made to give proper coverage, would protect you and the chair just fine. They're durable too. The one I use is the same one I've had for almost ten years now.

And oddly enough, Just yesterday Karine and I were discussing a welding table idea that would be just the thing for welding from a chair. Hmmm....
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Postby unjonharley » Wed Jan 09, 2008 9:18 am

LeChatNoir wrote:Would you believe that after the flu-like thing on Christmas Day, I got a stomach virus on New Year's Eve?

Head in a garbage can at 2:00 am on the first day of '08.

Lovely.

Worse than any hairball ever...

But I will not give up on the project, damn it!!!

I WILL NOT!!!

*urp*



\/
my kitty boys, and i m sure Salem would tell you the same thing..

"If you feel sick, You should lick that hard to reach spot and take a nap"..

Now back to work on the inproved Contraption..
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Wed Jan 09, 2008 11:42 pm

Leather aprons... wow... what a good idea... I've just been wearing clothes that I didn't mind getting lots of little holes in... most of the time...
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Postby theCryptofishist » Thu Jan 10, 2008 12:19 am

With glass blowing you can't wear synthetics because of the way they burn, but sitting on a cusion that 's made from synthetic materials...
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Postby Toolmaker » Thu Jan 10, 2008 1:28 pm

Like the cat says.. leather is the way to go. If you NEED something other than animal skin maybe a bunch of layers of the yellow fire retard stuff. I have a loose glove around that I could try and dump some slag on to see if it burns through. Personally I would go with the harley style seat and have a leather apron that would cover chest down to ground. All my welding stuff is leather from my grandfather, works just as good as it did 50 years ago. I did grab some newer model duds recently from a thrift for 5 bucks.. leather sleeve and apron snap on deal.. they had NO CLUE what it was for. I pretended I didn't know either when asked, told em I was using the leather for scrap pieces.
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Postby LeChatNoir » Fri Jan 11, 2008 10:25 pm

I prefer longer aprons, 42“ long minimum, but many on the market are only 36â€
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