So it has a heater element in it, cool. It plugs in, take another picture from the other side. I'm always trying to see what others are using. I use a propane BBQ and let it sit at low over night. I used to be able to use that BBQ but I don't feel so bad because I got it for free.
Does it matter which way the oil flows past the element? I'm assuming it doesn't, but you never know if one way works better than another. I'm going out on a limb saying you've got less than $25 in the entire heater. I like that simple design.
FTE Arkansas chapter member
1972 Ranchero GT (351C CobraJet intake)
2001 Explorer XLT 2WD
2004 F250 6.0L 2WD CC "Pavement Princess"
2007 Monaco Starwood SL 31BHD
2012 Focus SEL (Wife's ride)
I have the flow going FROM the elbo TO the T with the element in it. I did it this way so I could mount the heater horizontal with it a little lower at the element to avoid an air pocket that would greatly shorten the element life, mounted in this way the element is always completely submerged even when the pump is shut off. the only draw back is the houseing will collect a small amount of glycerol so after draining your reactor of glycerol run the pump for a second or two to clear the housing. this is not my design but it is a great one that works well. the oil must be circulated through the heater while it is on or I don't know what will happen but it can't be good. I have my heater wired in with the pump so one will not run without the other. you're close I think element and all it might have been 40.00, I used all black steel pipe instead of galvanized..
Yes, its true galvanizing and VO do not get along well. The galvanizing comes off and the flakes are a wonderful 'oxident' to the VO, rapidly increasing the rate of polymerization. IOW, the 'fuel' won't last as long and will use more filters (due to early-stage poly)...
I have sand-blasted the insides of some galv pipe to remove the offensive coating!
Also, be aware that locallized overheating is possible (due to laminar flow), creating little carbon chunks that must be filtered out. But, since most elements that size are 220v - the wattage is only 1/4 that rating at 110v, so the 4k watt element is prolly OK after all - depending on the flow of oil thru the 'heater'.
I've used a set-up almost just like the pics for over 2 yrs now - with and without a water heater t-stat attached to the pipe. Someone over at DFA forums posted a cool t-stat controlled 'immersion heater' from mcmaster they were using in same fashion. (nice, but looked pricey!)
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