Preserving The Boiler

Content Tools

R. D. 6, Trenton, Missouri

It is a well known fact that a boiler in constant use and with good care will last a lot longer than a boiler used a short time each year and then left without special care.

Our hobby steam engines will not last long if our boilers are destroyed by carelessness.

There are different ways of protecting the inside of the boiler. In my long experience with steam boilers I have had good results by using powdered graphite and steam cylinder oil. About one half pound of graphite and about one quart of steam cylinder oil poured into the boiler when cold, above the water line. The cylinder oil and graphite are not mixed before putting into the boiler. This quantity to be used for a 20hp. boiler. This should be done once a week or whenever a boiler is washed. This process has given me good results in my 40 years experience with boilers.

Graphite in a boiler has a mechanical action, not chemical, and it really gets behind the scale and sticks to the plates which gives you the protection needed.

The U. S. Graphite Company, Saginaw, Mich., sells a boiler graphite at a very reasonable price.

Another method of preventing corrosion is to use an oil spray on the inside of the boiler. Remove wash out plates and plugs and have the boiler thoroughly dry. The spray method can only be used when the boiler is not to be used for a considerable time.

There will be steam engine men who disagree with me on the practice of using oil in a boiler, but experience is generally a pretty good test.