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Old 04-19-2010, 02:15 AM
truckerboy truckerboy is offline
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Any Help Building a Hydro Blue Oval

Ok, well this is an idea that Ive had for some time, and i have thought it over a lot, and would really like some outside ideas, and maybe help if yall are up to it.
What I wanna do, mainly as a proof of concept at this point is to build a truck that runs 100% clean with no petrol in it (besides brake fluid, powersteering fluid and trans fluid). I was thinking maybe a hydro system (not water injection, but rather a steam system). I know this is way out there, but i am tryin to make this work. I was thinkin that it would need to have the boiler conponets placed at the back of the truck (for safety), and maybe have the main tank up front, like a 200 gallon or so.
I do not know how much vaccume (if any) this engine would make, so manual brakes, trans and steering are a must, and some kinda release valve on the conpression tank, that once it reaches a preset pressure it would release to avoid the tank from blowing.

I know this is a crazy idea, but if yall think that you can help, please do.
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Old 04-19-2010, 04:50 PM
aurgathor aurgathor is offline
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Are you trying to put in a steam engine?
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Old 04-19-2010, 08:16 PM
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thats basically it. i know it can be done, its been done before, but im not sure how to make it work cleanly.

well, not put one in, but convert a 400 cid to run on steam power.
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Old 04-20-2010, 03:30 AM
aurgathor aurgathor is offline
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The 400 CID V8 won't work on steam. It might on wood gas, but that's a **** poor fuel for it.
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Old 04-20-2010, 02:51 PM
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itll work. simple physics says so.
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Old 08-15-2010, 08:15 AM
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soooooooo....... what will heat the water to make steam if you don't use gas or diesel, pixie dust? to convert a gas engine to steam, you will need to use completely different(or major modded) heads and valve system. more cylinders will not on their own make a steamer more powerful.
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Old 08-15-2010, 08:50 AM
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the current setup has an electric heating element (a 24 volt, similar to a stove element) and a boiler that heats about 4.5 gallons of water at a time.

As far as the heads. They are the stock 335 heads, just welded the intake valves shut, and removed the push rods and lifters. Working on a modified system to use the distributer to route the steam, but that is taking some time.


As far as why, you assume its power (assumption based on your statement of "more cylinders dont = more power). Its not about power. I am doing this for several reasons.
1. To be able to say "i did that"
2. Fuel is available over 70% of the earth
3. the steam engine is very Torque. More so than even a diesel engine. The switch from steam to diesel in trains wasn't made because of power, but rather the smoke and crap that the coal burners that powered the boilers put into the atmosphere. comparable to diesels, the steam puts out 20% more torque from 70% the size. (the steam trains are bigger, but mainly due to the size of the boiler.)
4. Steam vehicles are not regulated by NC DOT as heavily as the internal combustion engines. (Take advantage of any loophole you can find!!)
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Old 08-15-2010, 07:42 PM
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so where will you get electricity? extension cord. yeah i'm being a bit of a smartass i spose. the other reason that trains went to diesel is that its a more efficient way to use the energy. water is not the "fuel" in a steam engine it is merely a media heated by the real fuel. to get any decent range on a reasonable amount of water you have to reuse the same water. the old locomotives ran a total loss system, the water towers were not many miles apart. think less than 30 in most cases. steam makes torque IF YOU HAVE A LOOOONG SLOW power stroke that lets the steam totally expand before the piston reaches BDC. batteries to heat the water? now you still have to charge them. might as well just have electric motor. you mention 200 gallons, think about it thats 4 4 4 fifty gallon drums barely fit in the box never mind under the hood especially since that V8 is still up there. do some math figure out how many amps of 24 volt its going to take to turn even 50 gallons of water to steam. i bet you need a semi to haul the batteries for you. look up the stanley steamer,it is still the best production steamer out there. both in fuel and water consumption. the stanley motor is less than a quarter the size of any V8. by that calculation the V8 will be so inefficient that it won't make it out of your driveway. oh a little thing about the pistons rusting solid from condensation if the crankshaft doesn't seize up first from water in the oil. sorry to kind of poop on your idea but way too many problems to sort out to even try making a plan. as far as taking advantage of a loophole, there are no loopholes in the laws of physics and thermodynamics, and just because it isn't regulated by the govt doesn't mean it is remotely environmentally friendly. final thought to make steam remotely efficient you need to reach high pressure. the higher the better like a thousand pounds or even several thousand. any pressure vessel over 150 psi needs to be regularily certified and as a steam vessel, needs to be operated and maintained by a certified boiler engineer. you could get away with out the ticket until your boiler blew up and killed people and it would. then their lawyers would be feasting off your steamed carcass
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Old 08-19-2010, 12:01 AM
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ok, first off no where in there did i mention 200 gallons. thats simply too much mass to have on a truck.
The batteries dont need to be charged when they are not in use, thus just leave the alternator in place. The initial heat will come from a 120 volt cord, simular to the heater from older diesel engines.
As far as the rusting to. just need a way around the oil. Maybe a roller bering setup, or something similar.
Also, as for blowing it up, well it was fun while it lasted.

Steam powered cars have been made. There was a special on them on UNCTV a couple of days ago. Jay leno has a few of them. Its not the fact that it cant be done, its making it work with fords parts. I understand that its easy for you to set there and list everything thats wrong with this idea, but its definately harder for you to give me a way for it to work. What we need is a forum to ironout all the details in then have someone build it and have it tested way out somewhere on a closed corse where it cant hurt anyone.
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Old 08-19-2010, 12:40 AM
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have the boiler conponets placed at the back of the truck (for safety), and maybe have the main tank up front, like a 200 gallon or so. nope i guess you didn't mention 200 gallon anywhere did you. making it work with ford parts is like trying to use jet engine parts in your 351 they don't work on the same principal. the amount of steam needed means you need much more heat than a 120 or even 220 element can make.that why those steam cars use kero burners. oh yeah it would be difficult to help you because its not possible to do what you want. go online look up those steam cars of Leno's and see the size of the engine, way smaller than any V8. the power in a steam engine comes from the fact that when water turns to steam it expands either in volume or if confined in a boiler the pressure rises. now work is done when the steam acts on the piston, but any heat loss reduces the energy available to do work and the heat loss on the massive area of the ford engine means that nothing is left. i don't get the part about the batteries not being used. you said they would be used with a 24 volt element to heat the water. now if you plan to recharge them on the go with the alternator thats like lifting yourself by pulling up on your bootstraps. IT DOESN'T WORK as far as rust an roller bearings go they like it even less than plain bearings. i have nothing against what you want to do but 20 years as a mechanic tell me your basic idea has such huge flaws it can't possibly work
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Old 08-19-2010, 12:47 AM
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i ment that they wouldnt be used when the engine is off, like in a gas car, so that a alternator setup could be used.

Nothing says that i cant get a steam engine and somehow adapt it to the t-18 thats in the truck, is there?
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Old 08-19-2010, 01:03 AM
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adapting an existing steam engine is the only thing you've said that makes sense. and its very possible. however the steam engine doesn't actually need a transmission. the steam engine makes enough torque you have no need of torque multiplication, and since they can turn backwards as well as forwards reverse isn't an issue either. if its a 4x4 you would want to mate it to the transfercase otherwise the most efficient setup is no driveshaft and attach your steam motor directly onto the differential. in WWII they started out using steam powered torpedos with a really cool radial piston setup. they used 100 percent pure alcohol to heat the water to steam the entire engine fit into a 18 inch torpedo. it would be a really good engine if you could find an old surplus of some kind, or do a lil web searching. if you can beat the fuel issue you have decent chance, but you have to understand water is not the fuel. the fuel is the stuff that heats the water. so if the fuel is the electricity in the batteries it can't possibly use the alternator to recharge itself. it would be like running your exhaust pipe back into the gas tank and expecting it to refill itself. perpetual motion hasn't worked for anyone in 10,000 years yet, not even once
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Old 08-19-2010, 01:11 AM
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now we are getting somewhere. What we need is something that is really efficent at heat transfer to use as a boiler so we dont waste fuel on heating the water. Maybe we could have some sort o corn oil or something sustainable.

To keep the engine under the hood, we would have to use some drive shaft or similar item to run the differance.
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Old 08-19-2010, 01:38 AM
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we have a mindset especially here in north america that the engine should be in front. rather than placing it where it might make more sense. think of the original VW beatle people wanted to look in front for the engine it was what their mind told them was logical. the closer you can place engine to the drivewheels the better, now in the case of a large gas engine you end up some distance away. however the steam motors that would function in a pickup are going to be roughly 18 by 24 or less so mounting it either behind where the present transmission is, or right on the diff, lets you eliminate the weight of the drive shafts and all the space they take up. in the case of the old stanley i believe the engine, firebox, and boiler were all one. if i understand correctly it didn't really have a boiler where water was stored as it made steam on demand. which is why the time to make pressure was a few minutes rather than 30-45 minutes. boilers radiate a great deal of heat, as well as any piping between the boiler and any engine, that heat loss greatly reduces any economy. the stanley brothers eliminated much of it by making it all one component, and was a great part of why they could almost compete with gas engines. even those torpedos basically used the same steam on demand concept, they needed instant steam with 0 wait time
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Old 08-22-2010, 12:58 PM
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You can either have a good steam system or an abortion slapped together out of junk.

If you want a good steam system, build and test it on a skid first so you can dyno it and make changes easily.

You will need to weld the boiler to appropriate code so you don't kill bystanders. That's a lot of stored energy wanting to get out, so think in terms of stainless steel, TIG welding, and having the fitting and welding done by a professional. This will not be cheap. You will need to become a machinist or pay one, become a certified weldor or pay one, and scrounge proper materials or buy them.

You will have years of study and work to do , since you are starting from scratch.

There is an impressive amount of steam engine information in the Prelinger Internet Archive. In particular, books on railroad shop practice. Locomotives were high-tech vehicles and quite sophisticated. There is no point in trying to invent blindly when steam was a very mature technology and well-documented.

If you can make it work it will be worth it for what you learn, not for the engine itself. Good luck.
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Old 08-22-2010, 12:58 PM
 
 
 
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