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Messages - Roark

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Engines / Re: Injector question
« on: May 03, 2011, 05:34:25 PM »
Sorta sounds like a line from the old Ghostbusters movie:

Akroyd: Don't cross beams.
Murray: Why not?
Akroyd: It would be bad. Very bad. Imagine every atom in your body exploding in a different direction
Murray: Ok. Hot safety tip from Eagon. Don't cross the beams...

Seriously however, I didn't notice any improvement with additional input on the injector screw. So I backed it down to where it just started to smoke and then added a smidge more. At some point I need to get the injector on a tester and set it to the spec pressure (whatever it may be) but for my goofings now, I think it will be close enough.  Your input regarding camshaft stresses is well considered however and I sincerely appreciate the heads-up!


Engines / Re: Injector question
« on: May 01, 2011, 02:06:08 PM »
Gentlemen, THANK YOU! Now it makes perfect sense.

I recorded where the factory setting was, and at 3/4ths of a turn tighter, the stack got noticeably cleaner. I will run it in a bit more as a test, and then out to see where things get smokish. It certainly seems smoother at the present setting, but I want to play a bit.

I am learning that the Diesel Bug is a journey and not a destination. If you have a crescent wrench and a screwdriver, even us lowly Noobs can play along.  :)


Engines / Injector question
« on: May 01, 2011, 01:39:53 AM »
Okay... Complete Noob here. You have been warned. :)

The engine is a Vidhata 1-banger water-cooled 1500 RPM.

Question: the injector has a threaded backshell which when removed shows a slotted adjustment locked in place with a lock nut ala a valve adjuster. A cutaway diagram I found on the net shows this screw sets the pressure on a spring which holds the injector pintle against the seat. Tightening this screw inwards causes the exhaust to clean up considerably. Loosening it yields somewhat dirtier deposits inside the stack.

What is this adjustment really doing??? Since fluid isn't compressible, I don't see it changing the timing, but I am willing to be called wrong. Or is this just setting the injector pressure and more pressure means better atomization?



It took me a while to twig to what you were thinking, and now that I've dine the research, I'm itching to try it.

Yep, we have natural gas, and it's CHEAP. A therm here is about a buck... so on a Btu basis, NG costs about one third compared to over the road diesel. In a hurricane, it would be nice to have a way to stretch the liquid fuel reserve without resorting to fuels of last resort.

The gas meter is right around the corner of the garage and it has this tempting little 1/4 inch plug on the regulated side. :)

Will post any results of my goofings tomorrow. Caterpillar says 80% NG to 20% diesel is good, so I will start there and see where this leads.


Per BSchwartz's suggestion, I emailed Gary at Diesel Electric Supply (http://diesel-electric.us) a bit after 3:00 PM today.  Just a few minutes later, I got a reply back, essentially saying "I've likely got it here somewhere if it's remotely Lister-esque. Please send me pictures and I'll do my best!". 

What a sincerely nice guy!


Since SWMBO'd is unlikely to forgive me over the last Tub Thumper I dragged home, this does sound interesting. After all, if there isn't any chance of forgiveness, then I won't feel bad about doing it again!

But oops. That ad is for the Seattle(ish) area.  I'm south of Houston, TX, and I'm betting that shipping in this day of >$4/gal diesel will cost me nearly as much as the engine itself.

And I'm not really THAT interested in being suddenly divorced. :) Unless of course the Swedish Bikini Team suddenly takes an insane liking towards slightly pudgy, balding, greasy-knuckled, over-the-hill, Nerdian wunderkins like me. 


Lister Based Generators / Re: Rubber Pads for Gnerator Mount
« on: April 19, 2011, 02:50:57 PM »
Add my vote to the "pictures please" ticket!

I'm looking at doing something similar and would love to see what has worked for others.


BSchwartz: Thanks for the link!  I'll try 'em.  My Vidhata is a VH4, which seems to be materially different from the basic Lister(oid) setup. More of a Petter-style if my Noob-eyes and Googlings don't deceive me. My critter is a 1500 rpm engine, single flywheel, and the head looks completely different... but ya never know!  Maybe I should post a picture in my next rant, just for grins.

BuickAndDeere: You are a brave man indeed! :)  Honestly, I was thinking the same thing, but really didn't want to voice that sort of hedonistic opinion here.  :laugh:  It's true this will never be a show queen.  I'm eyeing it as a deep-fallback option for hurricanes, floods, fallout (or insert your favorite End-Of-The-World scenario here). 

In the end I have a sneaking suspicion that my inner Old Engineer will eventually get the better of me and this creature will simply HAVE to come apart due to defects, either real or imagined.  Confession: My realization now, after getting some good, greasy hands, a couple of busted knuckles, some take-out fried chicken and a fair quantity of beer is this: It's an 800 lb tinker-toy and the real reason I drug it home was to play with it.

I see I'm in darned good company. :)


Ha!  It runs!  Amazing what you can do with copious amounts of carb cleaner, mineral spirits, and a six-pack (or two) of beer.  And patience. LOTS of patience.

The stuff in the crankcase was home-brew grease.  "Home brew" because it was what was left after the rest of the oil had been consumed. No oil changes for this baby in the last several thousand hours.... just "top offs" using whatever happened to be laying around (confirmed by owner).  I used a long-handled teaspoon to scoop it out as it had the viscosity of cold pudding.  Once I got the worst of it out, mineral spirits got the remainder flowing again.

The space in the thorax of this critter (where the pushrods pass through the jug on their way to the rocker arms) was also completely gooped. Again, patience, mineral spirits, and much cussing with a toothbrush got the job done.

The overhead bits were actually in quite good shape. Again, turps, beer and elbow grease were constructively applied.

Happily, my earlier belief that the injection pump was munged wasn't true. The injection system wasn't shot... just completely gunked. Turns-out a 50/50 mix of ULSD diesel and Marvel Mystery Oil is a soverign purge for an injector pump. Once the (old, unfiltered, fresh-from-the-crankcase) waste motor oil was flushed-out of the injection system, it got to feeling much better.

After fabricating a hose-fed cooling system and filling it up with oil, it caught fire on the second try. It was NOT happy, but it ran. I spent Sunday tinkering with the various bits and feeding it clean diesel laced with various OTC cleaners. By sunday night, it was starting and running happily. There is smoke in the exhaust, and the injection pump leaks, but it runs nicely and isn't bad for vibration once it's up to speed.

Now comes the actual tear-down and rebuild. 

Question: I've looked using all the search terms I can think of but can't find Vidhata parts anywhere in the USA. Anybody got a source? I really don't want to buy directly from india if I can avoid it.


Today I found-out the injection pump is toast. Ooops.  ::)

Silly question: This critter sure looks like a standard-issue Bosch/Mico to me, but there isn't anything visible to identify it one way or the other. Does anyone know if the standard Mico would swap-in?

I'm trying to avoid ordering one "just to see". :)


Tom:  Too late.  I also have a draft horse.  SWMBO'd (She Who Must Be Obeyed) KNOWS she's Number Two. LMAO!!!


Well, three years of lurking and I finally took the plunge. :)  Just for the record, when my wife got done screaming at me, I did the manly thing and liberally blamed this group. (She didn't buy it. Much. heheheh).

The object of my forthcoming divorce is a basket-case watercooled Vidhata VH4, 1-cylinder, 8 hp.  It was moving water at a fish-farm until it ran out of water (the water jacket on the engine is plumbed-in to the discharge of the pump. No thermostat. No screen. And the big pump isn't self-priming. Who DESIGNS this stuff?).  The engine isn't siezed, but it's clearly going to need a set of rings and related pieces. It's clearly been used hard. But I was looking for a project, and the price was right (free!), so it followed me home. The 6-inch centrifugal pump is going straight into the bin.  The base will need to be reworked. It'll need an intake, exhaust, and radiator.  But the basic engine seems very salvageable. All the major bits are still there. Unfortunately the crankcase looks like someone filled it with a mixture of grease and beer. So it's gonna have to come apart completely.

To my questions... and ANY comments/feedback/assistance will be appreciated:

Q1).  Anyone have a manual for this creature?
Q2).  Where are you guys getting parts in the USA? All I can find is Basant in India. Lots of lLister stuff, but nothing Vidhata!
Q3).  It appears the only difference between this motor and the 10 or 12 HP units is the bore. The stroke is the same. Anyone ever up/downsized one of these?

Thanks in advance for any pointers you can give.


From the viewpoint of someone who spends much of his life in court, let me give you a more "legal" picture of what Herr Maul is doing:

1).  The net has a very long memory.  Were something to happen as a result of his tamperings, count on this entire thread getting into evidence.  (I know *I* sure as heck would be beating him with it if I was prosecuting a wrongful death/injury case!)
2).  At least in Texas, homeowners insurance won't cover "intentional acts".  "Negligence" is covered, but "knowing conduct" gets you to "intentional acts", which is very specifically not covered.  (In Maul's case, I'd be arguing "malice", or "reckless indifference", which not only nullifies any possible insurance coverage, it trips-open the door to punitive damages).  So understand that any damages awarded, be they property damage, wrongful death claims, etc, come directly from his own pocket. 
3).  A very basic defense for Maul in a *civil* case will run about $15K to $30K.  Assuming he did win, the judge may or may NOT (more likely) allow him to claim attorneys fees.  For a good lawyer, you could easily double this number.
4).  A very basic defense in a *criminal* case would run about $25K to 50K.  For a top-notch lawyer, you can again double that number. Win/Lose/Draw, he's gonna spend this, and it comes right out of his own pocket.  Or he can get a court-appointed attorney... which basically means he's going to jail. :)
5).  In either case, you're looking at adding another 5K for a testifying expert, which in a case like this, would be a requirement if you wanted to have ANY chance of winning.  )FWIW, finding a degreed professional engineer who is willing to say "connecting a generator directly to the grid with only a breaker for a protective device is actually a standard practice, routinely done, permitted by code, and constitutes a safe and orderly manner of intertie" will be a stretch.  You're gonna need a lot more dead presidents to get him to say this with a straight face to the jury).

As a practical matter, the question really boils-down to this:  Does Maul feel confident enough in his position that generating fifty cents per hour of generational offet revenue looks attractive compared to incurring $25K to $100K worth of attorneys/experts fees? (Put it another way: Assuming Maul has free fuel, no maint expenses, and in fact has no expenses whatsoever, it's still gonna take him in excess of TEN YEARS of co-generation time (24/7/365 running) just to pay a middle-of-the-pack attorney).

As a professional matter, I would be very happy to take his money.  As a personal matter, I'm rather repulsed by his assertion that a $5 breaker would be an acceptable subsitute for the proper paralleling switchgear and necessary control logic.


Engines / Re: Injector line residual pressure
« on: February 07, 2009, 01:06:07 PM »
Some *really* good stuff here.

Steve: I'm rather fortunate as the source of the waste oil is a private fleet depot.  They know what I'm up-to, and they're sorta interested in playing-along with my mechanical fantasies.  During the winter they have a burner system which heats part of the shop using waste oil, and the owner has figured-out that it's cheaper to have his guys NOT dump "other" (hehehe) stuff into the waste oil tank than it is to keep replacing the pump on the burner.  So while I have no doubt there will always be some "other stuff" in the mix, this source should be about as good as it reasonably gets.   

Bob:  I hadn't thought about the chlorinated solvents.  If these are present in any quantity, I can see your point.  I'm not *that* old, and I'd rather not have elective surgery to remove a second head, third arm, or prehensile tail.  (Tail could come-in handy I guess, having watched cats use them to great effect for balance. Hmmm...)

Maybe I'll see if I can find a source of condemned jet fuel.  If it's out there, and cheap/free, it does sound like a preferred solution.  Thanks for the input, guys!


Engines / Re: Injector line residual pressure
« on: February 07, 2009, 04:11:50 AM »
Thanks for the input, Gents!  Much appreciated!

To clarify what I'm up to:  I've got a never-ending supply of waste motor oil available to me.  I'd like to run a 'Roid on this stuff without adding anything to "cut" it (ie, no gasoline, diesel, etc).  I just want to mechanically filter it down to within an inch of it's life and also get the water out as well. 

For better combustion, I want to tweak a bit and heat the fuel after it leaves the injection pump and before it hits the injector.  The actual temperature I can heat the fuel to should depend largely on the pressure in the line (and to a certain degree on the fuel properties itself).

Looking back on my post I see where I may have confuzified (sic, hehehe) things a bit when I used the phrase "...heating to just under the vapor flash pressure..."  That term gave Stan the willies, and I understand why.  But what I'm really talking about was the point where the fuel will try to convert (non-explosively) to a vapor, aka "vapor lock"... and not about the point where the fuel goes "boom!" in the line.

Anyway, your responses are greatly appreciated. :)


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