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Dunham Steam System from 1910

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And she’s still running. Fixed the Wayne Blue Angel burner. Nice and quiet. No water hammer. No surging. Love it. They sure don’t make them like they used to.

I referred the customer to this website. He seemed very interested in his steam systems.
Never stop learning.

Comments

  • Gsmith
    Gsmith Member Posts: 433
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    What else in this world built in 1910 still works except steam systems? Amazing, great to see.
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,889
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    Are there any baffles in the boiler's flue passages? These can save a lot of oil...................
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Mike_Sheppard
    Mike_Sheppard Member Posts: 696
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    @Steamhead no idea. Didn’t open it up. Afraid it might fall apart lol. It’s a gas burner.
    Never stop learning.
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,889
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    Baffling was a common practice during World War 2 when fuel was rationed. If you can find a copy of the old Audel Oil Burner Guide by Frank Graham, you'll find a lot of details therein.

    If the cleanout door hinges are in good shape, there shouldn't be an issue opening them.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Mike_Sheppard
    Mike_Sheppard Member Posts: 696
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    If I go back I will check that. I was just amazed by the boiler. Oldest one I’ve seen that’s still running.
    Never stop learning.
  • Solid_Fuel_Man
    Solid_Fuel_Man Member Posts: 2,646
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    I would be very interested to put a combustion analyzer on that and see how much of a chimney heater it is. Those are all 3 pass, but the large passages for coal ash to collect in make for warm chimneys.

    I took one like that out of service a few years ago. Had a Carlin oil burner in it at 2.75 gpm on water. Believe it was an ideal brand. Converted in the 70s to oil. Burned coal until then.
    Serving Northern Maine HVAC & Controls. I burn wood, it smells good!
    CLamb
  • Mike_Sheppard
    Mike_Sheppard Member Posts: 696
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    @Solid_Fuel_Man I agree. Would have loved to check it. He did say he had a company test it last year and it had 80% combustion efficiency. I find it hard to believe but he seems to be happy with it.

    I wonder how much longer it will last.
    Never stop learning.
  • mikeg2015
    mikeg2015 Member Posts: 1,194
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    I bet this is almost the exact system that was originally in my home. I think they later added an oil burner, then tore that out in the 1984 and installed the current gas boiler.

    I found and old oil nozzle and there's still coal dust and bits on top of the rafters over the boiler and the room that was used as a coal bunker.
  • Mike_Sheppard
    Mike_Sheppard Member Posts: 696
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    @Jim_R I was wondering what the bulb was as well.

    @Steamhead do you have any idea what the bulb fitting is under near the gauge and vaporstat? I have never seen that before.
    Never stop learning.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,075
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    I would assume the "bulb" does the job of a pigtail.
    The pigtail under the gauge looks relatively "new".

    But how would you clean the "bulb"?
  • jerryb46
    jerryb46 Member Posts: 59
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    I started servicing heating boiler in N.Y city Brooklyn and long island in 1963 .Still do some moonlighting and its awes me how many older homes still have 60-and 80 year old systems steam running as good as the day they installed.Still get calls from long old homeowners who still remember i fixed their problem 40 years ago.Over the years i've come to my own idea that Brooklyn water is soft and this keeps mineral deposits low.Nice too see pictures of bygone years and these systems still run fine with a small amount of up keep. Jerry B
  • GBart
    GBart Member Posts: 746
    edited October 2018
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    The gas piping to the burner doesn't look too swift.

    All that extra piping going by and coming back a balancing trick?, no drip leg? nice valve