Odds and ends

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Mark
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Fri Nov 24, 2017 6:18 pm

Some future plans are to string this Nilo filler wire I bought for some Curie point experiments across the length of the yard which gives me about 110 feet if I max out and if really crazy there is the diagonal which would provide even more length. But the aim or hope is to wire guide little beer bottle snorkelers so as to make something entertaining instead of the ordinary static running devices. If I work out an ignition system, the bottles could be lit from the opposite side of the yard and watched as they jet along the wire suspension towards the camera or from other vantage points. But as perky as the bottles are, the most robust snorkel diameters are proving to be impossible to sustain. I don't know if the impressive barks are just a variation on the sudden barking dog tubes they do as a chemistry demonstration that can't sustain breathing even if given fuel or if there's a chance the snorkelers can overcome their brief life proclivities. Also there's the question of how much sag the wire will have or if it really matters in the grand scheme of things.

Another thought on the piglet snorkeler with the 1.25 inch diameter exhaust, it would be fun to mount it on a skateboard and put an augmenter on it too to enhance the thrust and then tether it to a pole and let it go in wide circles on some flat pavement. You could dress it up a bit to enhance the aesthetics instead of just a plain tank on a skateboard, put a cowling or embellishment of some sort to make it more interesting.

The ~13 kilogram roll of wire is 36% nickel and the rest mostly iron with 1.6% niobium, 0.2% carbon, and 0.4% mangane. It's very similar to Invar.

"Invar, also known generically as FeNi36 (64FeNi in the US), is a nickel–iron alloy notable for its uniquely low coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE or α). The name Invar comes from the word invariable, referring to its relative lack of expansion or contraction with temperature changes."

"It was invented in 1896 by Swiss physicist Charles Édouard Guillaume. He received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1920 for this discovery, which enabled improvements in scientific instruments."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invar
http://www.espimetals.com/index.php/84- ... 6-invar-36
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Mark
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Wed Nov 29, 2017 2:50 am

Yesterday I tried an experiment with this 3/4 inch diameter exhaust snorkeler download/file.php?id=14741&mode=view because of the tall faint flame I saw with the piglet snorkeler with the larger diameter 1.25 inch diameter snorkel I videod the other day. It's just easier to start and more reliable than the piglet with the high performance snorkel.

So I got a finger pump sprayer filled with methanol and boric acid which normally makes a bright green flash when sprayed while lit with a cigarette lighter flame. But even though there is an obvious faint flame ejecting out of a snorkeler when running, it doesn't seem to want to light on fire the flammable mist no matter how directly the spray is misted into the flickering exhaust flames. Perhaps the flaming exhaust is too depleted of oxygen. But I did notice an ever so slight increase in perkiness as some of the mist must have been ingested by the snorkeler with each spray attempt.

But then it occurred to me it might make for a spectacular increase in snorkeler power if I skirted the perimeter of the snorkeler exhaust/intake in a plume of pure oxygen from an oxygen tank. Instead of the intake taking in ordinary air, some pure oxygen could be sucked in if a tube with little holes surrounded the intake so as to have it ingested with the fresh air on the intake phases. Maybe this would be akin to cars that use a nitrous oxide boost. Just a thought.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08zgiU18p6I#t=1m49s

In other news a quirky thing happened today with a 12 ounce paintball snorkeler with a 1/2 inch diameter plumbing pipe exhaust. Instead of just revving up energetically/barking and flaming out or doing some sort of weak start and then dying, it revved up running a few seconds and then suddenly backfired and flamed out. I've never had one backfire before. This configuration of 1/2 snorkel on a 12 ounce tank has of yet not sustained the full grease ear cracking rev that so impressed me awhile back. But again the point being, never ever has one started up revving for a few seconds stabilizing and then suddenly going off like a gunshot. It was quite odd.
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Sun Dec 10, 2017 12:38 am

So another jam jar of modest results. Perhaps the fuel/air ratio is more fragile with smaller sizes as the heat builds up evaporating more fuel than it can use. Also the fuel becomes watery as it runs of course, the byproducts of combustion CO2 and H2O. 2CH3OH + 3O2 ===> 2CO2 + 4H2O
Jam Jar Jet Mini Quartz
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VgMJac_amhk

In other news we had a light dusting of snow last night in sunny Florida and testing has been kind of dismal. The temperature the other day was 7 degrees F below the flash point of methanol so I took to preheating my paintball tanks and aluminum beer bottle snorkelers with a propane torch just to get them hot enough to light - the flash point of methanol around 52 F or 11 degrees C. I like cold air but the smaller snorkelers seem to be less perky and less likely to rev up and sustain. Conversely if it's too hot outside they refuse to run or perform as badly as being too cold - the Goldilocks zone somewhere between the two. The high today was 48 F/9 C thereabouts. Even my Bic butane lighters are making the smallest of flames as if running out of fuel but in reality it's just the cold.

Still life Jam Jar Jet
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Mon Dec 11, 2017 2:39 pm

Another thing tried was a spark plug on a beer bottle starting the propagation internally instead of at the exhaust end using a Bic lighter. And it seems to be more reliable for getting the bottle to rev up. On time, all 5 tries produced a good starting impulse with revving whereas if lit from the tip of the exhaust it's much less likely to build a starting feedback. Ordinarily you get a lot of weak starting impulses or the flame flames out halfway down the snorkel making a whoop sound or even if the subdued flame makes it all the way down the bottle (as evidenced by the heat you can feel when holding it) it often gurgles or just fights you if the mixture isn't just right. On top of that, the bottles have yet to actually run more than a few seconds at best. So some other fueling methods will be tried. Also the angle the bottle is held helps or hinders the probability of a good start. The spark plug was put in the neck so that I could swirl the methanol inside the bottle coating it a bit before a starting attempt without wetting the spark plug which makes the plug less reliable - it has such a tiny gap to begin with. Also that's about as far as my pinky finger could reach and precariously hold the nut while tightening the plug to it. Even with the spark starting method, the jet doesn't rev instantly but rather there's a very brief sudden expanding whoosh before the rev kicks in. I'm only hoping to get a ~5 second run, something long enough for a short flight or whatever.

Another attempt was to put a rubber stopper in the exhaust tip and bang start the bottle with the 1/4 32 spark plug. But all that came about was a gunshot effect, as if the flame front was too fast to get the pool of alcohol to light or stay lit.

I bought this jacketed beaker thinking it would be something to toy with if some kind of lid were made for it. Maybe some rubber bands could be strung over the hose barbs to hold a lid down. The jacket could be filled with water or perhaps methanol which when heated could conceivably be used/directed to take over feeding the jam jar after an initial star with just enough fuel to get it up to temperature - just a vague thought at this point. It was just something to motivate me, an interesting shape that may or may not come to fruition. Being borosilicate there's a chance it will hold up for a couple of minutes at best but that's all I'd bank on but who knows, if the cooling jacket kept the jar from forming high/low temperature gradients next to each other, with an even rise in heat the glass might hold up.

In other news, I decided to burn up some old methanol that had been used for some previous runs and testing and what was left saved in a steel water bottle. It was pretty watery so I did what I usually do, run it a larger engine that isn't so fussy. The usual thing that happens is that the engine runs for a few minutes and then when it stops you can light the top of the snorkel as there's always some fuel that doesn't burn up and as such evaporates fast enough in the hot tank to produce a gas that can be lit making a nice-sized flame like a jumbo candle burning, that burns for some time. But yesterday's event was a first, this fire extinguisher tank after the run didn't want to make a gas that was flammable after the run. In fact when I put some thick leather gloves on and tilted the tank sideways, there was this sudden whoosh as the methanol/watery solution flashed in the hot snorkel. But the flash this time was so uncharacteristic, it was a different kind of distinctive hiss I attributed to the liquid being a very large percent water. The large tank on the right was what ran for ~2 minutes before stopping and leaving the highly watery liquid.
download/file.php?id=15052&mode=view
It's just never happened to me before, not being able to light the snorkeler fumes after a run. Maybe the cold weather allowed for more "distillation" before dying out coupled with the highly reused watery methanol.
As an aside, a fun thing to do with a paintball tank snorkeler is to after a long hot run, tilt it sideways to flash the remaining methanol in the tank with gloved hand whilst lighting the ejected gases with a lighter held in the other hand. Not only do you get a ten foot flame/fireball but the force actually produces somewhat of a kick or recoil force felt in the hand that's holding the tank.
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Mark
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Wed Dec 13, 2017 3:06 pm

Well it may not seem like much, but I finally got the perky 1/2 inch diameter snorkel on the 12 ounce paintball tank to sustain for a full grease 5 second run. Instead of the typical 30 ml of methanol in the tank and endless attempts, something around 50 ml was used and the tank maybe held at a slightly higher angle. And even then trying more or less fuel in the past, I was never able to verify that an echo producing/ear piercing rev would ever sustain with that shape. And it's not something that will be easily repeated even after this first success because if it does rev up full grease it will most likely flame out without sustaining, the slosh or whatever chaos that goes on inside the tank makes it mightily fussy.

I kind of liken it to starting a Dyna-jet by priming/spraying some methanol inside the chamber and intake with a finger pump sprayer and then lighting the tail end with a match instead of typically using starting air from a tire pump or air compressor. It's very hard to achieve enough oomph where the feedback kicks in and sustains enough to bring it to life. I've only done that one time with a Dyna-jet. You can spark it from the inside or cork the tail and bang start it without compressed air but try to start one by just lighting the tail with no starting air and you'll acquire a new aspect of the word patience. If it's hot and humid out it's never going to happen and the same if too cold.

The troublemaker on the left.
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Thu Dec 21, 2017 1:57 am

Something exquisitely easy occurred this evening dinking around with a wine bottle.

At first I wound some aluminum tape around a piece of tubing after sticking it down the neck of this wine bottle. But It was roughly flush with where the neck enters the main region of the bottle and I didn't get any "sustains". So then since the tubing was a little wobbly inside the neck I wound a few layers of aluminum tape around the tubing and inserted the tube into the neck of the bottle which fortuitously made an airtight seal just sliding it inside the neck on the first try - press fit. This was far easier than wrapping tape around the outside of the neck and tubing and squishing the transition to make a seal. And it disallowed/backed it away from being on the verge of inside the bottle chamber. I think the air flow is smoother being up inside the neck more.

And lo, there came about an extremely simple jam jar jet snorkeler where you can watch the "exotic" flame front and hear this robust sound far above that of a typical jam jar jet. Ideally one would have chosen a more apropos wine bottle for the initial presentation but maybe I'll break down and buy a bottle that plays upon the theme. Something like this.
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-72RpinzMv7U/U ... 5729_n.jpg
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_DYScwva4QIs/T ... amjar4.jpg

And maybe there'd be an even more flashy wine or champagne bottle that would add some zing to the presentation. And whatever actual wine bottle chosen, could be angled in a wine bottle holder too for added visual effect. You need to angle the bottle anyway and seeing as how it gets really hot really fast, you don't want to hold it in your hand for too long anyway for fear of cracking. When this first bottle revved up and sustained, I quickly stopped it after 4 or 5 seconds and I felt even that was really risking it holding it in my naked hand.

So all that's needed is a section of 1/2 inch EMT tubing @ $2.81 for a 10 foot length at Lowe's checking prices right now. I just micrometered my tubing and it agrees with what the internet says. That is it's an OD of 0.706th and an inside diameter of 0.622th. I wasn't for sure it was EMT because I had cut it long ago and just happened to pick up the section.

Behold the jam jar jet wine bottle snorkeler, the first on my block most likely. It was interesting to watch the flames inside the bottle in dim light. And to hear the steady sound too. At least now I can see how the level of alcohol lays inside a bottle depending on the angle and how it might slosh around. Rarely are things this easy. I'd always dwelled on using a wine bottle but never guessed it would come together so quickly. Thinking about it, a threaded cap wine bottle might be a little more tricky if there's a narrow/wide/narrow gradation inside the neck instead of a more streamline corky neck. I don't think any wine bottle would last very long with this type of combustion though - maybe wrap the bottle in aluminum tape for a slightly longer effect. At any rate to hear that full bodied barking dog sound is kind of special and how it springs to life. It's much better in person than listening to it on a computer.
This wine bottle seems a winner, probably my first choice for a glass bottle snorkeler presentation.
http://www.ashleyslaughterdesigns.com/P ... e_post.jpg
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:05 pm

If you lived somewhere where there was an ice-covered pond, something like this sleigh wine bottle holder would be cute propelled by a wine bottle snorkeler, albeit briefly whatever time is allowed before the glass self-destructed. Too bad they don't make quartz wine bottles. Or wouldn't it be nice to just buy a wine bottle with an appropriate long neck?
https://i.pinimg.com/originals/fc/54/2b ... e0accd.jpg
https://talkavino.files.wordpress.com/2 ... c_0372.jpg
https://andershusa.com/wp-content/uploa ... 016-11.jpg
https://www.alibaba.com/product-detail/ ... 71111.html

As an aside, the wine bottle snorkeler almost didn't come about. My table on the porch was getting quite cluttered and I was going to throw the wine bottle and lesser potential objects (junk) away but instead decided to try it as a snorkeler as there was a piece of EMT tubing on the table too and so what the heck, I gave it a try. While a 750 ml bottle and EMT snorkel is not an idealized configuration, it's plenty zippy and not much harder than making a jam jar jet. You have to cut a length of tubing and wind on a piece of tape instead of drilling a hole. I think everybody would agree seeing a wine bottle snorkeler rev up, it's a lot louder bordering on harsh and somewhat startling for so simple a shape, way more than your mother's jam jar. ha

I should say the wine bottle snorkeler is quite a bit more fussy than a jam jar in getting it to sustain.
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Mon Dec 25, 2017 1:05 am

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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Wed Dec 27, 2017 8:22 pm

So I was toying with this jumbo wine bottle and wanted to mention that if you try to rev it up without the copper tube insert there's no hope to get anything other than a strange whistling eddy current whoosh. But unlike 5 gallon jugs that will sometimes cycle up into jam jar mode there's a whistling effect caused by the very end of this neck neck having a narrowing restriction to the outside air. You can feel it if you put a finger inside the neck, as you pull your finger out there's a ridge or narrowing at the very last that's a no-win situation. If they made bottles with a straight shot into the main body or it can even flare somewhat as it merges with the "combustion chamber" but it seems most wine bottles have variations in the neck that disrupt cycling.
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Wed Jan 03, 2018 7:20 pm

In other news I decided to crack the seal and pour out a very old bottle of Pinch whiskey and try the shape with a simple press fit 3/4 inch piece of aluminum tubing snorkel. It's pretty lively as far as snorkelers go but I haven't gotten it to sustain at full grease, the flame front nifty loud in the barking rev department but unstable for sustaining so far. Maybe a shorter snorkel ...
https://decg5lu73tfmh.cloudfront.net/dr ... 121802.jpg

Also that video with the seemingly circular chuffing motion in the bottle still hangs on in my mind as if it's possible a snorkeler could be optimized to segregate the airflow in a side-by-side dual flow inside a snorkel and a circular flow inside the bottle instead of the typical up/down swirl vortex feed that goes on with a normal jam jar jet.
I can't tell if it's an anomaly or if the swirl is actually swirling in a clockwise manner but it looks like it here.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HcTRapGoHK8#t=3m41s
Or even if such a swirl could be going on inside this typical snorkeler effect below. It's just amazing how air can move in and out so quickly in such a regimented organized way. Anyway it just crossed my mind if the flow could self-segregate say when a charge comes down the snorkel perhaps it could drift to one side setting up another type of motion. There's no flow rectifiers inside my snorkelers like Reynst's engines of course.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j7tGX_5B_Jk

This shape is fairly impressive when it revs up, but it hasn't sustained - pictured here with an inconel snorkel, a bit overkill for frail glass. I think if the snorkel was slightly narrower it would increase the blowdown time and would more easily have a chance of sustaining. But it's very loud when it barks, as in kind of hard on the ears. So that was nice for such an odd shape. If you were just sitting at a table and lit this, many wouldn't suspect the amount of sound you'd get out of it.
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Sun Jan 07, 2018 2:10 pm

The Pinch bottle wouldn't sustain so a shorter snorkel was tried which brought it around. It was loud and foolishly I wasn't prepared to stop it but having my lighter in hand, quickly and awkwardly put that in the exhaust but it just slowed slightly and then went back to its speedy self until getting a better hold on the lighter while trying not to burn my fingers in the exhaust stream. It only ran about 3 or 4 times longer than in this clip but that was enough to cause panic that the glass would crack before getting it on video. It's funny learning the best angle of attack to putting out a jet of hot gases that suddenly wants to keep going, it's more resistant than a jam jar to interference. You have to be confident and go in for the kill and hold the lighter firmly in a non-dainty manner. Shaking the bottle would have worked had it occurred to me in time.

To make the snorkel a length of tubing was sawed on a metal bandsaw to get an even cut and then put in a lathe and the ends first hit with a flat file to smooth the outer edges and then a round file inside the tubing to get the burrs out. Lastly some sandpaper while spinning to make the ends and inside of the tube even more favorable to airflow. If you cut aluminum tubing with a pipe cutter there's a possibility it can narrow the ends of tube.

Often a dog will bark and sound the alarm whenever these snorkelers rev up. This time it's a new dog two houses away instead of the usual three or four houses over from the other side of the house. Funny that they would do that but they do. Just one brief little rev is all it takes. The sound can't be that discernible at that distance with wooden fences between, maybe it's just something peculiar to them. The dogs farther away you can just barely hear a muffled woof but it always coincides with a rev as if communicating faintly by echo across a great divide.
Jam Jar Jet Pinch
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M38JTs3W-oI

With a slightly shorter snorkel ...
Jam Jar Jet Pinch Test
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCKFeVNPYWM
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Thu Jan 11, 2018 8:48 pm

This dog was some sort of lotion or liquid soap dispenser made of very fragile material which cracked easily. Sadly this is all I have of the little barking dog.
Jam Jar Jet Barking Dog
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VqhhkjfLQWA
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Fri Jan 12, 2018 4:24 pm

This is the evolution of the flame and color transition all happening in this one run and brief amount of time. From green to orange to a greenish-blue something or other.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5MBb3qauQs
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Re: Odds and ends

Post by Mark » Fri Jan 12, 2018 6:04 pm

These frames seem to show some segregation, maybe an interval of duel flow in the neck?
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