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Another project, this one steam related, renovating old steam toy.

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  • Another project, this one steam related, renovating old steam toy.

    A friend of mine left an old German toy steam power plant with me, which needs work on the boiler. It's missing a blow-down valve, the whistle is loose, and the pressure gauge has a problem. We are going to get it working, when he next gets through town. The engine itself is working, it's the boiler that is the problem, and there are a couple other parts missing A lamp post, and a ladder) that he is trying to find. It's one he's had it since he was small, so it's pretty old. I am told it is a Fleischmann 130-2

    Currently, I am making a new valve, similar to the one on it that is used as the main throttle valve. All metric, of course, being German. I have the valve body made, and the bonnet. I still have the stem, the handle, and a couple of nuts to be made. Kind of interesting trying to make a part similar to an existing part, you have to try to figure out how it can be made. It had an odd metric fine threads, which I have no taps and dies for, but other threads are standard. The odd one was M6 x 0.8, when 1.0 is standard. I used standard for that, since I am making the boiler bush and the rest of the parts, and it only needs to all work together. I'd rather have used the fine pitch, but you do what you can.

    Pics of the unit, and one of the old and the newly made parts. The pic of the end of the boiler is where the boiler bush and the new valve will go.

    Last edited by J Tiers; 03-08-2022, 01:43 AM.
    CNC machines only go through the motions

  • #2
    I had one as a kid. Sure wish I had kept it. Lots of fond memories.
    Will be following!
    olf20 / Bob


    • #3
      Originally posted by olf20 View Post
      I had one as a kid. Sure wish I had kept it. Lots of fond memories.
      Will be following!
      olf20 / Bob
      I always thought they were pretty neat, but never had one.
      CNC machines only go through the motions


      • #4
        A proper and worthy project. And splendid looking work on the new valve body.

        The boiler walls on those always looked so thin. I assume that they only run at 8 to 10 PSI or so? Anyone out there have any data on that?
        Chilliwack BC, Canada


        • #5
          I have a Wilesco D10 that I need to fix up


          • #6
            There are a fairly large number of collectors of these sorts of models
            , Two points which come to mind are, firstly any home done repairs, no matter how well done will likely decrease the sale value of such models.

            Secondly, and, in my view, more importantly. most boilers were built of thin brass sheet and intended for working pressures of less than 20 lbs or so. Unfortunately, brass often deteriorates with age and so the boilers safety margins are now likely severely compromised.I would advise anyone repairing one and intending to steam it to hydraulically test it to no more than 40 lbs cold water pressure and steam it only to 10 lbs or so,

            When I was a youngster I really worked some of these models very hard, far beyond their designed pressures and got away with it, but most are 60 years or so older now!

            If the model is to go to the enquiring hands of a youngster I would suggest the most prudent course would be to replace the boiler with a copper silver soldered job identical in appearance to the original and designed and tested to steam at much higher pressure., though with safety valve set for about 25 lbs or so.
            Regards David Powell.


            • #7
              The gauge on this one goes only to 3 PSI, and the boiler is copper, although some fittings are brass. I'd never test this to more than maybe 5 or 6 PSI, and I'd be wary of that 6 PSI. The engine works decently on strong lung-power, so 3 PSI will be plenty. (more about that later). The maker used soft solder, and I will either use that, or maybe 95-5 just to be on the safe side for temperature.

              My friend (same guy with that old lathe from a few years back) is really only interested in getting it running. Value? Schmalu. He has a grandson..... And besides, he always liked this and likes it still. He lived on a steam powered paddle wheel houseboat for a while. He still has the engine and boiler from that, as well as the paddle shaft. I'd not have ever used that boiler if you paid me, but it never blew him up, so.....

              I finished the valve. It took nearly every machine in the shop to make the thing, and I made all the hardware, including the 4mm nuts,which I need to make a pair of wrenches for.

              I may shorten the stem, but to be frank, I am not excited to do that. The stem is #2, the M3 end portion of #1 stripped when being threaded. M3 x 0.5 is not a very coarse thread, roughly the same as a #4-50 (yes 50) thread would be, and I suspect the die is not particularly sharp, as well as having a long taper on the entrance side, requiring the die to be turned around to get an acceptable thread closer to the shoulder.

              New blow-down with boiler bush in front of the existing throttle valve. Parts are, externally, the same size as far as wrench sizes, etc. The knob nuts and shaft portion were supposed to be M2.5 but I don't have a die for that.

              The next issue is the pressure gauge. The Bourdon tube is OK, I checked it. But the mechanism that operates the needle is screwy. As far as I can tell, the curved lever goes over the center pivot as shown, but some sort of stirrup or other connector goes between it and the slot in the lever. The part of the lever that sticks up fits between the "horns" of the needle,and moves it. There is a slot in the dial for that. I will need to make whatever goes there.

              Here are the parts laid out:

              And here is what I have of the mechanism set how I think it has to be. I do not know what that wire at the bottom is for:

              Last edited by J Tiers; 03-08-2022, 08:05 PM.
              CNC machines only go through the motions


              • #8
                He's sent you down quite the windy path, eh?

                Yep, that valve came out looking dandy.

                Will he be heating the boiler with the BBQ starting cubes of similar white stuff laid in the slide in tray as these typically used? Or will you be making up an alcohol burner?
                Chilliwack BC, Canada


                • #9
                  Dunno what he wants to use. It HAD an alcohol burner, years ago, but it went by the wayside somewhere, apparently. I have suggestions for one out of the K N Harris boiler book, but he'll do what he likes for that.

                  He hasn't sent me anywhere I didn't agree to go...... I like the thing too, and fully agree it should work, and not be kludged if that can be avoided.

                  I DID find out why those valves are not cheap if bought..... But it was fun to make. I'd not much want to make a run of 50, although I could probably make them much faster and more efficiently than this one, starting with new taps and dies. And using brass hex stock, not cutting the hex for each part like this time I have some hex collets, although probably not one for the large valve base, and none of them are metric sizes.
                  CNC machines only go through the motions


                  • #10
                    Gotta admit - pretty neat project, take a look at that beast and all it's "conversional mass" - then look at that tiny little "generator"

                    Wow, it's a lesson of inefficiency in itself which can create a better understanding of efficiency, great project to bring up and around maybe for others to covet and learn from....


                    • #11
                      Had the wonderful fun of drilling out a broken screw on the boiler mounting. A nice M2.5 screw.... Had to go through it with a #61 drill first, then a 1/16, and finished it out with a 2mm before chasing the threads with a tap and replacing the screw. Worst thing was I have a nice new-to-me drill press for those small drills, and the part would not fit under it! Had to do them by hand, but did not break any drills, so all good, I guess.

                      That screw did not (even though it appeared to), actually fasten down the boiler, which is riveted to the base through some brackets. The two straps over the boiler are purely decorative, they don't hold anything. So a lot of trouble removing screws for nothing. I took out two that loosened right up, the next was the one that broke, and the last I discovered was also tight and just left alone.

                      At least the makers spot welded thicker strips to the thin sheet where the screws go, so there was material there.

                      All that stuff, including the original screws, is in the firebox (explaining why they were so rusted). You can't see the rivets and brackets until you take the entire boiler assembly off the base. The base is held down by several screws and some twist-tabs as well.

                      Sorry, I was too irritated to take pics, even of the repaired original valve. That one had a screw-in fitting that the steam pipe was soldered into, which had broken off. I drilled that out, re-tapped it, and made a new fitting to fit.

                      That all brings up a question...................

                      I think the parts are either nickel or tin plated brass. Probably nickel. How well does the "electroless nickel" plating work? Will it stand up to the part being soldered? I know nickel is not very nice to solder to, but if well done it holds up over time.

                      I'd like the new valve and the new fitting to look like the rest of the fittings. The electroless nickel plating sounded like a good way to go about that as opposed to sending a few parts out for plating.
                      CNC machines only go through the motions


                      • #12
                        I’m guessing these models were pretty popular at some point? A few months back there was one listed on the local marketplace. Jensen, made in Pennsylvania. Boiler was very similar to the one above but the engine is different.


                        • #13
                          Yes, back closer to the "time of steam", they were fairly common, although I didn't know anyone who had one. They are collectible for now, although that will probably die out as the old fogeys who had one as a kid disappear. This fogey didn't have one, but my friend did, and this is the actual one he had.

                          Here's the old fitting, that had broken off flush with the valve body. I de-soldered it from the steam pipe (using the HF mini-torch, rather handy device... would be more handy if it would light every time)

                          And the new one, which would look fine if it were plated like the rest of the valve (I probably need to ask about that separately). The pipe is not quite bent correctly, whatever broke it off seems to have deformed it so that it won't fit straight in until re-bent.

                          Here are two of the "hidden brackets". Sort of visible inside the firebox, the flash helps a lot. You can also see two of the "doublers" welded in to take the screws

                          And here is a pic outside..... you can find the rivet if you know it's there, but I'd defy anyone to know what it was if they did not know to look for it. (above and to the right of the screw)


                          Last edited by J Tiers; 03-12-2022, 12:05 AM.
                          CNC machines only go through the motions


                          • #14
                            I don't think this is the model number I was told. There are what are supposed to be that model pictured around the web, but none of them have the generator. Dunno.

                            Boiler has some scale in it, or something. Big enough to rattle around. You can see it in the hole the bush will go in for the blow-down valve. I'll want to get that out before I block up the hole with the bush. Not sure if I can break it up, or if I ought to try something like vinegar or dilute phosphoric. The sight glass also needs the scale cleaned out of it. You can't see a darn thing through that, but I am afraid to unscrew the cover over it.

                            View of the boiler showing the way the steam pipe runs, down and under the base. The pipe is pretty stiff, I'll need to be careful when it is re-bent for final assembly later. These were not meant to be "maintained", everything is soldered together, no screw fittings, although mny attachments are screwed down (some are just twist tabs).

                            The two straps as mentioned, don't hold anything, just for show.

                            Last edited by J Tiers; 03-12-2022, 12:03 AM.
                            CNC machines only go through the motions


                            • #15
                              [QUOTE=J Tiers;n1990837]The gauge on this one goes only to 3 PSI, and the boiler is copper, although some fittings are brass. I'd never test this to more than maybe 5 or 6 PSI, and I'd be wary of that 6 PSI. The engine works decently on strong lung-power, so 3 PSI will be plenty. (more about that later). The maker used soft solder, and I will either use that, or maybe 95-5 just to be on the safe side for temperature.

                              I believe that the gauge is in BAR's rather than PSI. 1 bar is 14.5 psi, so maximum pressure would be a little over 43 psi.