WMO centrifuge system finally up and running!

Discussion in 'BioDiesel & Alternative Fuels' started by bbjordan, Feb 2, 2015.

  1. bbjordan

    bbjordan Snow Monkey

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    Still learning...

    Good news: The RTV sealed pipes work great. The only leak I had was the low pressure line feeding the pump. The only line that still has the Permatex thread sealant. :-cuss

    The heater works good. Temps in Celsius & Fahrenheit

    Temp_in_C.jpg Temp_in_F.jpg

    I noticed that when I had flow from the upper barrel the lower barrel would foam up.

    Foam_flow.jpg

    but when I shut off the flow, the foaming would go down.

    No_foam_no_flow.jpg

    I had the lid on the upper barrel to keep the heat in, but apparently that was a bad idea. What was happening was the moisture was condensing in the upper barrel.

    Condensation_on_barrel.jpg

    Although the temperature at the top of the lower barrel was above the boiling point of water, the bottom of the barrel was below boiling point. The pump draws from the bottom of the barrel and pumps through the centrifuge where the moisture was coming off, but unfortunately it condensed on the side of the cold upper barrel. Lesson learned. Lid stays off until all the water is gone.

    I still don't have a pressure regulator on the system. The washer under the nut trick on the centrifuge bowl didn't work. The top of the bowl was now so low as to block off the flow into the bowl. Doh! I stuck the bowl in my 12 ton press and pushed it back out. I got it as straight as I could, but it is now very unbalanced. It rattles and vibrates quite a bit now. It still worked, but when the oil was hot the pump could not make more than about 65 psi. It still got a lot of crud out though.

    More_crud.jpg

    A bigger pulley on the pump motor should fix the pressure/flow issue. It looks like I will have to order another centrifuge bowl tho. :(
    I am really surprised how much water was in the oil. I would never have guessed that much. Heating is definitely needed to boil off the water.
     
  2. Brad S.

    Brad S. Full Access Member

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    That really looks like a nice "working" setup.;Sweet
    If you can, explain that heater your using, 260 degrees is hot.(You could use the hot wmo to defend your castle against barbarianscookoo)
    How long did it take to get that temp??
     
  3. bbjordan

    bbjordan Snow Monkey

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    Brad, not much to explain about the heater. It is the heater element out of an old clothes dryer. 220 Volt. I wired it up to a 30 amp breaker. That is a standard dryer receptacle breaker. It heats up fast. I think it was about 3 hours to get it that hot. The temp shown is at the top of the barrel. The bottom of the barrel was still not at the boiling point of water! The garage is cool tho. It was only 5C when I started. I had the garage door cracked open a bit for fresh air and it was freezing out. Holy Jeebus that oil stinks up the garage fast!

    The next step will be to insulate the barrel(s). Some rock wool insulation, heavy duty barbeque foil and metal duct tape. Cheap a$$. That's how I roll. :)

    I ordered a new bowl and pressure regulator too.

    Defending the castle also crossed my mind. Getting burned by hot oil...what a horrible way to go!
     
  4. IDIoit

    IDIoit MachinistFabricator Supporting Member

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    may wanna add some tar into the mix, boiling oil would suck, but if it sticks, its alot more painful

    like i asked my uncle that was a sniper in Nam,
    " how many shots would it take you for a target?"
    he replied, "on a good day?, 7 or 8."
    "what about the ole one shot, one kill moto"
    "thats hollywood! on a good day, we start at his feet and work our way up!"
    "on a bad day, its 1 shot to the head and we are gone"
     
  5. Brad S.

    Brad S. Full Access Member

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    BB, that's good to know it works that well.
    Do you think it would heat things if it was on the outside of the barrel??...then it would need to heat thru the metal barrel...?? Just throwing out ideas for myself as well.
    Any idea how long it will keep working, being it's submerged in wmo???(that type of heater could be easy to find, old dryers and all)
    Those insulation types are very interesting, good that they are cheaper...
    Maybe as everything progresses, you'll plan in a exhaust fan for the barrel...

    IDIoit, your right on the boiling oil, think way back when, it was "pitch"... I think, which could almost be called the first napalm.-Flame Thr
     
  6. bbjordan

    bbjordan Snow Monkey

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    Still 'fuging

    Since I managed to clean up my garage a little bit, this weekend I set up the WMO processor. The water at the bottom of the skank tank got pumped out into jugs that went to the toxic waste depot. Once I hit oil, I raised the intake up about 2" and pumped into the boiling/'fuging barrel. It was only about 13 degrees C out so it took a long time for the little pony pump to fill the barrel. Hours. :p Good thing I had other things to do. Like painting the steel rims going onto the project trunk.

    Once filled, it takes about 4 hours to boil the water out with the dryer heater. It is amazing how much water comes out. I take the temp up to about 125 degrees C. It's pretty much finished bubbling by then.

    https://youtu.be/yszWoPN3r_4

    I was pleasantly surprised how little came out in the centrifuge after one pass, which takes about an hour. Having the oil sit for close to 2 years helps! Gravity works for me here. After giving it another 4 hours, I consider it "good to go".

    So Friday, I got 2 barrels of WMO de-watered, and 1 barrel with one pass. :) Correction, the second barrel only got two hours on the heater. I had to stop the heater to go on a recovery mission: My son borrowed the project trunk, and it died on him before he got home. :mad:

    Saturday, the 2nd barrel got de-watered, and the 1st barrel got another 4.5 hours of 'fuge time. The second barrel got to cool down while I had dinner. It cooled down to about 80 degrees. At that temp, the fuge can't make full pressure, the oil is less viscous. The project truck got diagnosed and fixed too! Also started a OS system upgrade from Ubuntu 14.04 to 16.04 on the PC I use mainly for my sound system.
    It was looking good until the reboot, and then the Wi-Fi wouldn't work. This is the primary network connection. Doh!

    Sunday, the 'fuge doesn't want to make full pressure even with cold oil. Oh, well I'll let it run at 60 PSI, can't hurt it. Besides, I have wheels to swap out on the project truck. After mounting the wheels, I turned my attention to the 'fuge. I shut off the intake to the centrifuge briefly and then opened it. That did the trick! The centrifuge was now at full pressure again. It is still going as I write. And I figured out the Wi-Fi issue too. I downloaded some updated drivers for my Atheros QGA6174 (ya, it's an old PC) and had to restart the network-manager service. :p

    I'll turn it off before I go to bed.

    This WMO will get blended 50/50 with diesel. I will also add a couple of litres of bio-diesel per tank to enhance the cetane value. This only gets used when the engine is up to operating temp, and typically when I'm on the highway. The 7.3 PowerStroke seems to like it. :)
     
  7. bbjordan

    bbjordan Snow Monkey

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    Centrifuge Update:

    The Hyundai power steering pump can no longer make enough pressure to get the 'fuge to 90 psi. I considered monkeying around trying to get a Ford power steering pump hooked up, but it just seemed too difficult to plumb into the system. So, I decided to go a different direction: air pressure using my air compressor.

    I had a few old propane tanks sitting around, so I plumbed one into the system. The liquid tap was plumbed into the bottom of the stack where the old power steering pump was. I hooked up an air fill fitting with a pressure gauge from a portable air tank. The fill inlet for the tank was plumbed to the 1" fitting on the propane tank. The other fittings were 3/4" NPT.
    I'm not happy with the fill inlet. I used what I have around, and while the drain hose fits nicely into the fill inlet, the WOG valve leaks slightly. I have a ball valve that I will replace it with, and use a more positive hose attachment method i.e. fitting with a hose clamp.

    IMG_0722.JPG

    Close up:

    IMG_0721.JPG

    Bottom of stack:

    IMG_0723.JPG

    With air hose connected:

    IMG_0724.JPG

    Watch the video:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hpzdLs1yWM4

    So far I'm very happy with the system. It is so quiet now, unless the air compressor is running. :)
     
  8. 79jasper

    79jasper Chickenhawk

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    If like to see if a Toyota mr2 pump would work.
    I used to have one that i was gonna use for a hydroboost system.
    They're 12 volt and have different power levels.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G935A using Tapatalk
     
  9. bbjordan

    bbjordan Snow Monkey

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    Well, I'm back to the power steering pump system. Only being able to do a tank/barrel at a time was taking too much time. I like being able to leave the system running for a few hours at a time. This time I picked up a 2001 Honda Civic P/S pump. It makes really good pressure and moves more oil than the other pump I had. It's a multi-groove pulley, but it still works with my V-belt setup.

    IMG_1448.jpg

    I accidentally forgot the heater on for a while and the oil got pretty hot...well 83*C (181* F). What I noticed was that a lot more crud came out. This is what came out after 4 hrs, of 'fuging. And this is already after over 4 hrs. on the 'fuge at a lower temp, which didn't pull out as much crud. The lower viscosity due to the heat seems to help.

    crud_01.jpg

    Close up:

    crud_02.jpg

    After it cooled a bit. That's 74.5*C (166* F):

    IMG_1446.jpg

    My heating/lower barrel is now insulated with rock wool insulation wrapped with an old tarp. Huge difference in how long it stays hot. :)

    IMG_1447.jpg
     

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