Newbie question ~ Tilley font ?

Discussion in 'Fettling Forum' started by 69T100C, Jan 15, 2021.

  1. 69T100C

    69T100C United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Aroundtoit !.JPG

    How to clean / polish the existing crackle paint finish, without damaging it !
    I picked the font/swanneck/cock assembly off a railway shunting yard scrap heap around April '78...
    i'm building it as a WL25 but seeing it's place of picking ~ it may well be a SL61 ?
    Contacted Tilley (Dunmurry) during that April for spares, they dated it anywhere between '38 - '48 ?
    Picked up the spares over the years since , time to get it built and lit !!
    Thanks in advance for your help.
    Chris
     
  2. David Shouksmith

    David Shouksmith United Kingdom Founder Member

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    Whatever you end up using, start gently and work up if that fails. Avoid abrasives at all costs.

    I suspect something as simple as washing up water would do the trick if it's just a bit grubby. I'd use something like kitchen surface cleanser as a next step if there are stubborn fuel stains around the filler cap. Be very gentle with the transfer/decal - don't let it get wet for long periods - a quick wipe over will do...
     
  3. JEFF JOHNSON

    JEFF JOHNSON United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Welcome aboard!:thumbup:
     
  4. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Definitely warm soapy water for a start. I've had good results with alkaline detergents when cleaning paint and other surfaces.
     
  5. BigStevie

    BigStevie United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Hi Chris and welcome. As mentioned above, warm soapy water as a gentle start. A fine lamp and well rescued!
     
  6. R100

    R100 United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Welcome to the forum Chris. Good advice from above. Let us know how you progress.
     
  7. ROBBO55

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    Welcome to CPL @69T100C
    Good advice given already. After washing use a good quality car polish or beeswax polish.
    Be gentle with the decal.
     
  8. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Funny, the guy who chastised me for using the term ‘font’ instead of ‘fount’ hasn’t piped up ... yet!

    Welcome Chris @69T100C

    John
     
  9. malcolm race

    malcolm race United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Welcome to the forum, a great find, I’m jealous
     
  10. 69T100C

    69T100C United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Firstly, many thanks to all, for the informative guidance and warm welcomes to a newbie.
    As far as I was aware it has a pressurised fuel tank - somewhere I’ve seen the terms “ font / fount “ , I picked / used the wrong one - that’s life.
    In the late 60’s my father used to repair boats, quite often at remote boat houses. A pair of well used Tilleys were our only additional illumination as far as I can remember, looked like the burner top of a SL61 on a PL53 fount assembly. I was only a youngster.
    It was that experience that influenced the saving of the unit I have.
    Best regards to all.
    Chris
     
  11. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    One thing you find do out when you start collecting lamps and lanterns is how many different terms there are for each and every part! The names seem to change depending largely on which country they're made in but for what it's worth I really don't care. Indeed, hand on heart, can anyone say they genuinely care if a fuel tank is called a fount... or font? Or whether a liquid fuel gassification tube is called avaporiser or a generator? Nipples or jets, bails (seriously?) or handles, globes, shades or even chimneys... the list is endless! Not only do you have to learn the terms like a new language, you have to learn 3 lantern languages (or is it lamps? I forget :^o) plus the local names for various components in German, English, Swedish, US English and many more.

    Honestly John, use whatever terms you're comfortable with, we'll know what you're on about!
     
  12. Fireexit1

    Fireexit1 United Kingdom Subscriber

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    A small diversion:
    If you put holy water in it it could be called a font....
    Of course once you remove the holy water it does not then stop being a font.
    The mind wanders....

    Whereas fount is rooted in fountain, but still pronounced 'font'

    Both words originate from latin 'fons' meaning fountain or spring.
     
  13. David Shouksmith

    David Shouksmith United Kingdom Founder Member

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    Being a simple soul, I prefer to call it a 'tank' - it's what I have in my car to hold a quantity of fuel for later use.

    Fonts are for babies and founts are for knowledge... :)
     
  14. Henry Plews

    Henry Plews Subscriber

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  15. R100

    R100 United Kingdom Subscriber

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  16. Brenneman

    Brenneman Netherlands Subscriber

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    And all are a vessel that can contain something :lol:
     
  17. Mackburner

    Mackburner United Kingdom Founder Member Subscriber

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    I think this is a lot newer than 1938 - 1948. Tilley didn't start stamping the tank sides until mid 1957 and the wall lamps are not listed after 1960. It should have a date stamp in the base plate with three or four numbers and one or two letters. Numbers are month and year but we don't know what the letters mean. ::Neil::
     
  18. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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  19. 69T100C

    69T100C United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Using a magnifying glass I've looked all around the base / rim area, the only stamping says "MADE IN ENGLAND" across the middle of the base in 3/32" - 1/8" letters.
    From the Fount's general condition, it's led a very sheltered life, which is strange considering where it was found ! in my original message I put a question mark against the dates .
    Attached should be a scan of the Tilley letter ~ 4 '78. In my enquiry to them, I enclosed a Polaroid close up of what I had at that stage.
     

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  20. Mackburner

    Mackburner United Kingdom Founder Member Subscriber

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    I still think he's wrong with the dates. I have never seen a Tilley with the tank base stamped but without the tank side stamp and they are all date marked as well. The earliest stamp marked lamp I am aware of is September 1957. However it is always possible date mark was missed for some reason so just because I haven't seen such a lamp doesn't mean it never happened. The date stamp in the base is smaller than the "Made in England" This one from Jan 1961 is pretty clear but they are sometimes faint and hard to find. The position isn't standard either which suggests to me probably not done at the same time and likely hand struck so a light hand would give a fainter mark. ::Neil::

    Til_120_161Xa_03.jpg
     
  21. 69T100C

    69T100C United Kingdom Subscriber

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    I’m really not going to beat myself up over dates, there is definitely no date stamp. If it’s late 50s , no problem.
    No surprise, it leaks from what I would call the operating knob gland packing area - non dismantle able. I’m guessing that the only remedy is replacement with one of the Aluminium ones ?
     
  22. Henry Plews

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    Most certainly not ! Treat yourself to one of these from The Fettlebox.

    Tilley Gland Nut O-Ring - pack of 4 or even one of these
    Tilley Washer Kit


    To change the seal, first unscrew the black knob, it will be tight so grip the shaft with some needlenose pliers using a strip of old leather or stiff cloth to avoid leaving teethmarks in the brass, use another set of pliers (again with some protection) to grip the knob and unscrew it anticlockwise. Unscrew the knurled (cylidrical) gland nut and using what ever you need to, remove the washer(s) from inside it. Slide a new washer / seal / O ring onto the shaft followed by the gland nut and the knob. Give the knob an extra tweak to make sure it won't come loose during operation. The gland nut should be tight enough to prevent a leak but slack enough that the control can be turned back and forth rapidly should the jet need cleaning.

    Tilley lamps were designed to be serviced without the need of any tools so after replacing / renewing seals, finger tight will do !
     
  23. 69T100C

    69T100C United Kingdom Subscriber

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    MANY thanks Henry, followed your guidance, worked a treat.
    Found a solid hard plastic like washer - 1/4” o/d, 1/8” I’d, .054” thick - no wonder it didn’t seal !!
    Glad I can keep the original brass cock.
    Thanks again.
    Chris
     
  24. Henry Plews

    Henry Plews Subscriber

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  25. David Shouksmith

    David Shouksmith United Kingdom Founder Member

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    Henry gives the correct version of knob-removal (ouch!) above, which I also use - most of the time, anyway.

    However, now knowing the amount of force required, I sometimes sneak up on them from behind and, before they realise it, give the knob a quick tweak of the appropriate torque with my thumb and forefinger and it usually works. Mind you, Neil advises not to turn the knob against the cam (and I agree) but I see that as with tools, not manually... :whistle:
     
  26. 69T100C

    69T100C United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Thanks for the additional information.
    I didn't have any leather but, used thickish corrugated cardboard to wrap around ~ worked a treat.
    Waiting on a delivery of a service seal kit, my only concern is that the 164X mantle that I have had in storage for a loooong time is heavily creased ?
    Cleaning wise ~ starting on the base area first, I lightly used a very fine Scotchbrite and washing up liquid mix, came up a treat no scratching ~ followed by the suggested car wax polish.
     
  27. Henry Plews

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    After fitting the new seals you may wish to do a dunk test to check that everything is as it should be. If the pump NRV (and its counterpart in the control cock) fail, it's most likely the rubber pip isn't properly seated. Correct this and all should be O.K.

    Don't worry, it will most probably be O.K. but before fitting it, I recommend doing a test burn to double check everything is tickety-boo. Have a look here
    Newbie requiring help/advice :)
    and at the last few posts at the bottom of here
    Tilley X246B - fire up
     
  28. 69T100C

    69T100C United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Test burn 22 1 21.JPG

    Seal kit arrived this morning and fitted, Leak tests ~ none found.
    Started test burn outdoors, when it started to settle down, moved in to workshop.
    Initially quite considerable flame liftoff, stopped when I reduced the pressure, total flame envelope (not visible in photo) 3" length. There is a degree of pulsing (correct pressure will come with practice). Flame doesn't look as good as the one "signposted" above.
    Considering I picked up the majority of the lamp 42 years ago (just gone suitably red with embarrassment !) with the encouragement / guidance of you guys i'm remembering "the Hiss" of 50 years ago ~ within 8 days of finding this Forum.

    Thanks ~ again.
     
  29. 69T100C

    69T100C United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Having re-read the thread mentioned above, the points mentioned about containment and high pressure burn have now sunk in …](*,)
     
  30. ROBBO55

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    The flame looks good to me. Your making progress :thumbup:
     

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