Re: Whistling Billy Replica
Posted by: (---.range86-159.btcentralplus.com)
Date: August 9, 2013 05:49AM
Yes Mike, I like the scorching but I think that I will need to eventually sort the paint work and I have found a matching cream enamel type paint that resists the heat better. I will make haste slowly with the repainting!
We had a great holiday in France. I was supposed to take Lucy, my 1908 White Model “L” but just finished fitting the new steam generator and then on final testing the day before we sailed, I could not stop blowbacks and found the cause at the last minute. One of the water pumps had the seat popping up and down with the ball. I did not have time to remove the pumps, make a new slightly enlarged seat, reset the clearance and then reassemble, so I took Billy who was ready to go.
We went to the Loire Valley and visited a splendid museum with my brother John and his wife Anne with his 1910 White Model “00”, Bill Rich with his family and his 735 Stanley and Billy with Chris Relf and Dave Try as assistants. They were to travel with John in his Dickey seat if we were going places. It was very hot and I was getting too much heat coming through the dash so I had to put on extra clothing to stop me being burnt. Later we visited a friend of Francois de Backer who was saving his 1909 White for Chitenay and I ran out of water a few yards before his house for the first time. How far will Billy go on its 24 gallons of water? Nearly there and back! I expect that it will go about 20 miles but nothing is yet proven.
We then went on to Chitenay as part of the celebrations of the tri-centenary of the death of Denis Papin in London in about 1713. It seems that he invented a steam valve which led to the development of the steam engine.
This was a small but very good little show over three days. The 1770 Cugnot replica was there running as was the Trevithick engine. Several traction engines and other steam vehicles were there including NO 1, a Burrell showman’s engine from England.
We were treated excellently and all went well except that I visited the railway lay-out with Billy and went slightly off road to let someone pass on an unmade road. Unfortunately, Billy’s back right wheel went into a hidden ditch and on giving a little throttle, I had some wheel spin and as we climbed out of the ditch, the crank again twisted. We were now just a static exhibit. Billy had been running well until then although the engine is still in trouble with the poor ball races.
Our three hot days were completed here and we then went on to Champagne country where we were welcomed at the local mayor’s house which overlooked the Champagne vineyard country and the river Marne as a huge bowl. On the last day we put on a show for the village with Billy static and Bill Rich giving rides in his Stanley before being guests of the twinning committee for a splendid BBQ type dinner with lots of the local juice.
Anyway, I will have a chance now to inspect the bearings as I need to strip the engine and rebuild it again with the crankshaft re-pinned and pressed together in the correct position. Not surprisingly, this seems to be the weak member in the power train on my Billy. Whites had better conditioned engines and twisted the universal joints on the prop-shafts. I still have to get started on working up my spare engine which is in very poor condition from being in a wet shed probably for 50 years!
I have also noticed that I am getting some damage to the venturi, probably through bouncing up and down on rough country and excessive heat on blow-backs. I also have some steering box wear. These are not surprising findings considering the hard treatment Billy gets at times with no rear suspension but just chassis flexion. I am really quite pleased with the general strength and handling of the chassis. The steering is quite light which is essential as one hand is needed for the throttle wheel in its centre to control the power and the “rear wheel steering” as it spins the rear wheels and the other is on the steering wheel.
Anyway, I am hoping to be ready for action on Prescott Hill Climb on October 5th and Castle Coombe later in that week but in the meantime we are touring with the 1908 White on the Three Counties tour. I have made and fitted a new valve seat using Monel metal. I am sorting a new flowmotor needle and also need to repair the speedometer cable before the next test run.
Chitenay 3 Whites.JPG (90kB)
Cugnot ratchet drive.jpg (92kB)