Building Primary Filter Unit

Figures 2-15 and 2-16 show exploded views of the primary filter unit; the list of materials is given in Table 2-3 (all figures and tables mentioned in Sect. 2 are presented at the end of Sect. 2). In the following instructions, all item numbers refer to either Fig. 2-15 or 2-16 and to Table 2-3.

The prototype primary filter unit was made from a 5-gal paint can. That size seems to be sufficient for gasifiers with fire tubes up to 10 in. in diameter. If a fire tube diameter of more than 10 in. is required, then a 20-gal garbage can or a 30-gal oil drum should be used.
The filter unit could be fabricated in any shape or form as long as airtightness and unobstructed flow of gas are provided. If a 5-gal container is used, it must be clean and free of any chemical residue. The top edge must be straight and without any indentations. If an alternate container can be found or fabricated, a larger diameter will permit longer operation between cleanings.

The piping (Item 29A in Figs. 2-2 and 2-15) which connects the gas generator unit to the primary filter should be considered to be a necessary part of the cooling system and should never have an inside diameter less than 2 in. A flexible automotive exhaust pipe was used on the prototype filter unit described below; it was shaped into a semicircular arc so that increased length would achieve a greater cooling effect.

The fabrication procedure for the filter unit follows:

1. A hole equal to the outside diameter of the drain tube (Item 13B in Fig. 2-15) should be cut into the side of the filter container (Item 1B); the bottom edge of this hole should be about 1/2 in. from the inside bottom of the container.

2. The drain tube (Item 13B) should be inserted into the previously cut hole in the filter container and should be positioned so that its nonthreaded end is near the center of the container and is about 1/2 in. off the bottom. Once this position has been ensured, braze (do not weld) the drain pipe into the side of the filter container. Close the threaded, exterior end of the drain pipe with the pipe cap (Item 14B).

3. Coat the bottom of the filter container (Item 1B) with a 1/2-in. layer of hydraulic cement (Item 28A), taking care not to plug or obstruct the end of the drain tube (Item 13B) with cement (i.e., fill the drain tube with a paper, styrofoam, or other easily removable, but rigid material). The cement should also be applied for about 1.5 in. up the inside walls of the container near its bottom. Round the edges slightly; the cement is to provide a pathway for any liquid condensate to drain out through the drain tube. The cement must be allowed to harden before proceeding with the fabrication steps below. Remove the filler material from the drain tube when the cement has hardened.

4. A circular bottom plate (Item 2B) should be cut to a diameter 1/2 in. smaller than the inside diameter of the filter container (Item 1B). This will allow for heat expansion and easy removal for cleaning. This bottom plate should be drilled with as many 3/4-in.
holes as are practical for the size of the plate. Three evenly spaced 3/8-in. holes should also be drilled around the edge of the bottom plate for the spacer bolts (Item 3B).

5. Fig. 2-16 shows the detail of using three bolts (Item 3B) as spacers for the bottom plate (Item 2B). The length of the bolts should be adjusted to provide a clearance of about 2-in. between the layer of cement in the bottom of the container (Item 1B) and the bottom plate (Item 2B).

6. A rectangular divider plate (Item 4B) should be cut to a width 1/4 in. less than the inside diameter of the filter container (Item 1B) and to a height 2.5 in. less than the inside height of the container. This divider plate should then be welded at a right angle to the centerline of the bottom plate (Item 2B) as shown in Fig. 2-17.

7. Cut a piece of high-temperature hydraulic hose (Item 5B) to a length equal to the circumference of the filter container. It should be slit along its entire length and then placed over the top edge of the filter container (Item 1B) to ensure airtightness.

8. A circular lid (Item 6B) should be cut equal to the outside diameter of the filter container (Item 1B). Three holes should be cut into this lid for the exhaust pipe (Item 29A) from the gasifier unit, the blower (Item 7B), and the filter exhaust pipe (Item 10B) to the engine manifold. Note the arrangement of these holes: the pipe (Item 29A) from the gasifier unit must enter the lid on one side of the divider plate (Item 4B); the blower (Item 7B) and the filter exhaust pipe (Item 10B) to the engine manifold must be located on the other side of the divider plate. This arrangement can be seen in Fig. 2-18.

9. The connecting pipe (Item 29A) between the gasifier unit and the filter unit should be attached to the lid (Item 5B) of the filter container. At least one of the ends of the connecting pipe (Item 29A) must be removable for cleaning and maintenance. On this prototype unit, an airtight electrical conduit connector was used. Many similar plumbing devices are available and can be used if they are suitable for operation at 400°F and above. The pipe can also be welded or brazed directly to the lid.

10. Attach the blower (Item 7B) to the filter container lid (Item 6B). On the prototype gasifier illustrated in this report, a heater blower from a Volkswagen automobile was used. Connections for a vertical extension tube (Item 8B) will have to be fabricated as shown in Fig. 2-19. A closing cap (Item 9B) is required for the blower exhaust tube. A plumbing cap of steel or plastic with a close fit can be used or fabricated to fit. The vertical extension and the closing cap are visible in Fig. 2-1.

11. The gas outlet (Item 10B) to the carbureting unit on the engine should be 1.25 in.
minimum diameter. In fabricating this connection, all abrupt bends should be avoided to ensure free flow of gas. Using plumbing elbows is one solution. The gas outlet (Item 10B) can either be welded or brazed to the lid (Item 6B) of the filter container or an airtight, electrical conduit connector can be used.

12. Latching devices (Item 11B) should be welded or brazed to the lid (see Fig. 2-20) and to the sides (see Fig. 2-21) of the filter container. An air-tight connection between the lid and the filter container must be maintained.

13. Cut two lengths of high-temperature hydraulic hose (Item 12B) equal to the height of the divider plate (Item 4B); cut a third length of hose equal to the width of the divider plate. Slit each hose along its entire length. Place the first two hoses on each side of the divider plate, and place the third hose along the top edge of the divider plate as shown in Fig. 2-17.

14. Insert the divider plate (Item 4B) into the filter container (Item 1B), making sure that the hoses (Item 12B) create an airtight seal along all sides. By changing the length of the spacer bolts (Item 3B), adjust the height of the divider plate so that it is exactly flush with the top of the filter container. Make sure that the lid (Item 5B) will seat flatly and tightly against the top edge of the divider plate.

15. Fill the filter container (Item 1B) on both sides of the divider plate with wood chips, the same kind as would be used for fuel in the gasifier unit. After carefully packing and leveling these wood chips, place the lid (Item 6B) on the filter container, and close the latches tightly.

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