My first boiler

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Shopgeezer

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Thanks for the info. I read the spec sheets and it sounds ideal for copper and bronze/brass. I will order some and give it a try.
 

aka9950202

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If there is zinc in the alloy don't use it on the boiler.

Cheers,

Andrew in Melbourne
 

Shopgeezer

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Good point. I understand that zinc will cause problems in hot water/boiler applications.
 

nealeb

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My understanding is that phosphorus-containing solders are not suitable for model boilers that are coal-fired as the sulfur from the products of combustion corrodes the solder fairly quickly (although it is presumably OK for spirit- or gas-fired boilers?) I think that the main reason that silver solder is the preferred material is that it is a capillary gap-filling material - you aim to leave a small (a few thou) gap between the parts to be joined and the silver solder will run in and form a high-strength joint. Brazing rod (brass?) does not flow so well and tends to build up a fillet which is not always so desirable. The silver solder generally has a lower melting point as well and can be obtained in a range of melting points so that there is less chance of overheating the parent material, and you can do subsequent operations with the lower melting point silver solder without upsetting the first joints. It's not unknown for people to end up melting the copper when trying to get it hot enough to melt brass - although in skilled hands this might be OK. Personally, the limited boiler construction that I have done has used silver solder and apart from the price, it is probably the best choice. But the price can be eye-watering for a big boiler!

I'm interested in the boiler illustrated at the start of this thread. Riveting (and maybe using a high-temperature soft solder for sealing purposes) is a traditional way to build a boiler although not much used for coal-fired boilers today - but how did the builder manage to rivet both the end flanged plates on a closed boiler? That's been puzzling me since I first saw the picture - it's like a "how did they get the ship in the bottle" question!
 

nealeb

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All is explained - I follow threads via the daily digest email and it does seem to skip things sometimes by the time it's reached my inbox. Didn't see that post but thanks for pointing it out. I understand the need for rivets "just for show" - I'm in the middle of building the tender for a 5" gauge loco which will have many hundreds of rivets for absolutely no structural purpose whatsoever - purely cosmetic! The things we do for "authenticity"... In this case, the boiler in question certainly carries the air of an early prototype.
 

Peter Twissell

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Absolutely!
When building my 3 1/2" Masie, I cut threads on a number of rivets, so I could assemble with nuts, allowing easy dismantling for access later on.
 

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