Frosty

Naturally Aspirated Ribbon Burner. Photo heavy.

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DARN, I guess that means I need to get back to doing a write up on the things I'd better get off to Word Doc, then. <sigh>

Frosty The Lucky.

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I read this last night after reading about 20 other pages here on the forum, and I know I need to read it again.  I can see three main advantages to this type of burner vs the conventional burners.  #1 it is a lot quieter, which in my book is a big plus.  I already have enough hearing loss, thank you very much.  #2  It is possibly more efficient if it is sized properly to the size of the forge you are building.  I don't think it's more efficient because it runs at lower pressures, as said before BTU's are BTU's, we just need to make sure they are being burnt inside the forge, not outside.   #3 it should have a more even heating of the forge with fewer hot and cold spots.

I hope I got it right?  Any other reasons I should be considering one burner over another?

thanks,  Ken

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You've got it about right Ken. The only thing that excited me about the silly low psi was it being stable at both ends of my regulator's range. I don't see it as any kind of serious advantage except maybe for heat treating.

The real advantages are noise and even heat. Heat output is strictly dependent on how much fuel/air mix you can burn per second IN the forge. That's a BINGO. There is a difference between BTU and absolute temperature. The kitchen range may put out more btus but it don't hit 3,000f. Burner output and temp must be balanced with furnace volume and intended use. If you were going to do a lot of forge brazing you could run a much larger chamber than you could and forge weld.

There is an advantage single outlet burners have the multis don't there isn't a hot spot in the forge so localizing heat is problematic but that's what torches are for. ;)

Frosty The Lucky.

 

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I've been wanting a ribbon burner forge for some time now. This has my wheels turning! I like it

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Frosty I'm about to build a propane forge and your NARB and T burner have completely changed my plans.  Do you have any advice on a forge design for general blacksmithing including welding.  My question really is whether a 20 lb propane bottle is the best place to start for a ribbon burner forge?

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Does general blacksmithing mean you are going to be making gates and railings or bottle openers and tongs?  

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@Canlib all of your questions have been answered in the Forges 101 pinned thread, I suggest and others will too, grabbing a drink or three and some snacks and reading through that thread. Good luck and hammer on!

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Canlib: I can't give you any specifics about forge volume and NARBs, the one I built is too large. The best answer I can give you with the limited info I have is make it as small as possible into which you can place and remove your work without banging up the liner.

Years ago I tried covering all the bases with a forge that you can change the size and shape. Turned out about 95% of what I did fit in a single burner corner but when  friend worked in it we lit a second burner and opened another section. Unless you have a commercial operation big forges are wasted money. 

The ribbon burner of any type generates a very even heat in the chamber and is quieter than a single nozzle.

I'm still kicking ideas around for my next experimental forge with the NARBs. This one isn't so good, works but can be much better.

Frosty The Lucky.

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On 11/12/2016 at 7:53 PM, WayneCoeArtistBlacksmith said:

I am very excited about Frosty'S work on the Narb.  I THINK that it is a great improvement over the NA burners with only a 3/4" flame.  As much as I like it I think that it lacks the ability to control the gas/air mixture of a blown Ribbon Burner.  I favor the NARB WAY OVER a standard NA burner.  Given the choice, for just blacksmithing I would go with a NARB but if you want fluxless welding, general blacksmithing and heat treating I would chose the blown Ribbon Burner.  Maybe Frosty's NARB  as shown in his pictures (I think that this shows a VERY reducing flame) with baffles for air control might work as well as a blown burner.

We see many posts here where nubies put forward new ideas that people with more experience know won't work well.  However, when someone with Frosty's experience not only come up with new ideas but then does the study to prove the concept I tip my hat.  Congratulations and thank you Frosty.

This is not to say that beginners should not put forward questions or new ideas.  With these more experienced smiths can check it out and if the beginner doesn't do the study or experimentation maybe the more experienced will get a new inspiration and do the background work/

Let me know if I can help you.

Wayne.

This was one of the first threads I read when I found IFI, and I still haven't gotten ribbon burners out of my mind.  I'm new to all of this so I'm try to pose a question, that hopefully advances the process of ribbon burners and their construction.  All of the ribbon burners are made with refractory materials.  I've been wondering if they could be made of pipe.  I know that regular black pipe melts at too low of a temperature, stainless steel melts at around 2700*, but I have some titanium 1 1/2" that should be good to about 3000*.   Will it burn up anyway?

It's only 1 1/2" dia, is that a large enough plenum for a 3/4" NA burner?  Any thought on how long to make it and how many or what size holes to put in it?  I was thinking 1 row of holes straight down, and 2 other rows off to the side about 30*.    What do you think Frosty?  

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44 minutes ago, customcutter said:

This was one of the first threads I read when I found IFI, and I still haven't gotten ribbon burners out of my mind.  I'm new to all of this so I'm try to pose a question, that hopefully advances the process of ribbon burners and their construction.  All of the ribbon burners are made with refractory materials.  I've been wondering if they could be made of pipe.  I know that regular black pipe melts at too low of a temperature, stainless steel melts at around 2700*, but I have some titanium 1 1/2" that should be good to about 3000*.   Will it burn up anyway?

It's only 1 1/2" dia, is that a large enough plenum for a 3/4" NA burner?  Any thought on how long to make it and how many or what size holes to put in it?  I was thinking 1 row of holes straight down, and 2 other rows off to the side about 30*.    What do you think Frosty?  

The Ti should be safe but I think it will get hot enough to pre-detonate the air fuel IN the plenum. Air propane has a flash temp under 1,000f. Even if it doesn't get that hot, heating the mix increases it's rate of propagation to the point the flame front exceeds the velocity of the mix coming out of the outlets and it burns back into the plenum. I run into that very problem if I run the psi too low, there isn't enough flow to keep the block cool and the velocity up.

On the other hand it's a normal multi outlet burner type for heat treat ovens that aren't expected to get above a given temp. There're a lot of variations and designs I haven't messed with long blocks but think about them and others.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Thanks for the reply.  I also did a search to see if it was possible to tig weld Ti to SS, not even close.  It fractures when cooling.  It could be done if you welded to vanadium as an intermediary material between the two supposedly.   I used the turkey fryer burner this morning to dry the inswool in the forge I'm building and it was amazing how much I'm starting to understand what's going on with the flame, now that I've been reading on the forum here.  Two weeks ago your statement about flame front and velocity wouldn't have made any sense to me.  Now after watching and playing with the burner this morning I know that as the burner was warming up I could keep cutting back on the fuel and maintain the flame on the burner.  It actually took quite a bit of adjusting before I could get it to lite and stay lit.  Way too much fuel and air from when I was last melting lead with it.

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I think you have a good handle on what to be looking for and can tinker yourself into understanding the things. Feel free to bounce ideas and questions off us of course but you're on your way.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Any thoughts to angling the nozzlets to encourage swirl effects in the forge? I know with a single burner it is necessary, but they have a lot longer flame length.  I realize casting it would be a bit harder.

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On ‎8‎/‎31‎/‎2017 at 8:38 PM, WayneCoeArtistBlacksmith said:

I was going to mention that the all metal Ribbon Burner would cause pre-ignition but I see that Frosty beat me to it and did a better job than I would have.

Didn't those old natural gas Johnson forges have all metal ribbon burners?  Been a lot of years since I've inspected on, and can't remember what I had for breakfast these days, but I vaguely remember a long perforated outlet with a sheet metal slide to cover some of the outlet holes.

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Joe: It's just a matter of where you put the burner. When you orient a single outlet burner at an angle it induces a vortex. In a pipe forge like watching water running down the drain. Yes? So mount a multi outlet or Ribbon at an angle, the flame is still impinging the floor, wall, roof, etc at an angle and inducing a vortex. 

The only real difference is a ribbon makes a much more evenly heated forge. 

Johnson Gas appliance forges are, as far as I know, all multi outlet though not necessarily ribbons. A "Ribbon Burner" is a description of one type multi outlet burner isn't it? I have an old Johnson Appliance 122A industrial trench forge out behind the shop. It's a 4 outlet gun burner oriented to induce a vortex in that deep trench. The box forges we had in school were Johnsons, the little one in jr. high had 2 outlets parallel just below the roof perpendicular to the doors. The larger version we had in high school had 4 outlets, two under the roof and two just above the floor and made a really neat looking tunnel of flame. 

The next NARB driven forge I build I'm modeling on the high school Johnson box forge. One ribbon across the top, the other across the bottom from the other direction. I'm going to model it with fire brick first though, I'm getting tired of spending time and money on less than satisfactory forges. This NARB forge works O-K-A-Y but I want better than . . . o-ho hum-kay.

Frosty The Lucky.

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So I'm planning my NARB build, modeling it off of Frosty's progress. Zircopax plus from a local pottery supply and Kastolite 30 from Harbison Walker in KC.  The area of difference that I'm looking into is on nozzelette sizing using low temp, mini, hot glue sticks (.27 x 4") and possibly making the whole assembly out of castible refractory by creating the interior void with lost parraffin wax. Right now it sounds crazy, but I think it could be a good method for others after it's documented.  Any thoughts on if I should put chicken wire in the refractory,  fiberglass strands, or ..?

The math on the number of nozzlettes looks like 21 ( .3125π*19 = .28π*x ) , but I think I'm going to bump that up to 24 and plug some if needed.  Seems easier than trying to add additional holes later.  I realize that this will depend quite a bit on the T-burner construction, but I think I'm going all the way and skipping the test builds here.  

Anyone have any thoughts on this?

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No, doesn't sound crazy to me though I don't know how well hot glue will burn out of the block. Yes, plugging outlets to fine tune is the way to go. Drilling more is a game killer.

Keep us in the loop please. 

Frosty The Lucky.

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Had a chance to play around a little in the shop (and office) tonight.  The little hot glue sticks seem to melt at a very low temp, so I think it will be easy to burn them out.  The smell coming from them when torching them doesn't seem too offensive either, just a typical hot glue gun smell except stronger.  I am hoping I'll be able to pull some or all of them out after casting though and won't have a ton to melt out.  Here's the process so far: 

  • (22) of the .28 diameter x 4"  glue sticks
  • zip tie on both ends in a tight bundle
  • torch the top of the bundle, melting about 1/8" or so, just to join them all together (10-20 seconds depending on your torch).  You could just use a glue gun I suppose
  • 1" x 3/4" black steel elbow, place it on top of the bundle while the glue is melted

For casting it, I'm thinking I'll cast it with all the glue sticks pointing up (attached photo that is upside-down for example).  I'll also encase the elbow completely in the refractory - we will see if this makes it crack or not due to differential expansion.  For the casting vessel, I'm thinking a quart mixing cup - make a hole in the side about an inch or two up for the 3/4" pipe, drop the elbow and glue sticks in, insert the pipe in the hole.

I'll keep them bundled as I pack the refractory down around the elbow and start of the glue sticks, then remove them and keep filling with refractory until I'm happy.  Adjust each nozzlet / glue stick, thump it to remove bubbles, adjust again, etc.  This will let me give them a little room around the ends of the nozzlet too for a taper effect.

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You definitely have my attention Joe. I really don't know enough about the things to have a valid opinion other than, why not, let us know what happens.

Every time someone comes up with a new variation it sets the wheels turning in my head and my tracks are off. WAY off. :)

Frosty The Lucky.

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6 hours ago, Latticino said:

Love this idea, but have serious concerns regarding the refractory drying, shrinking and cracking before it can be slowly fired up to harden.  Suggest you consider casting the refractory into a threaded flange with welded on mesh frame (see Giberson burner for example: http://www.joppaglass.com/burner/burnr1.html)

Definitely a possibility.  I'm trying to make this as easy to accomplish as possible for a layman, so I'm going to allow the casting to set in a controlled & wet environment for quite awhile in hopes that it will have the best chance before a slow cure.  I'm already planning on making different version if needed - playing the guinea pig here.  Picked up a 100 pack of the mini glue sticks for $5 today after a coupon so I'm getting prepared for more!  I'm also trying to document as much as possible so that it can be shared.

One idea I was kicking around would be to cast it in a small bucket or a quart paint can as a permanent enclosure, but the buckets were all galvanized and the paint cans had a teflon interior.  This first one I'm going to leave out the Zircopax and bentonite as if I can get a good part from kastolite, glue sticks, and black pipe I think we'd really have a winner.

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Shrinkage isn't too much an issue with Kast-O-Lite, it's water setting like cement, it doesn't dry. Once it's set from liquid the recommendation is to allow to cure in 100% humidity for full mechanical strength. 

Frosty The Lucky.

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