Optimus 300 had a hard life

Discussion in 'Fettling Forum' started by ennpe, May 3, 2020.

  1. ennpe

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    Hi all forum members. I am new to all this with pressure lamps. I found an Optimus 300 in my dad's toolshed a long time ago and have kept it in my storage för years. But now came the time to make it work. It doesn't look too bad, could need a polish.
    DSC_0420.JPG

    But I wanted to know more about the inside of this lamp so I took the cover off. Then I realised it had fallen on the head at some time.
    DSC_0421.JPG DSC_0422.JPG DSC_0423.JPG DSC_0424.JPG DSC_0425.JPG DSC_0428.JPG

    A very hard fall on the head. As you can see in the last pic the vapouriser tube is not straight, the rod on the inside as well. The jet with needle is missing too.

    A new vapouriser might be hard to locate but I'm gonna give it a try.
    This model is equipped with a one-piece vapouriser.

    If somebody knows where I can get a hold of this I'll be happy if they could give me a hint.

    They have a servicekit at fogas.se that I will add to the purchase list.

    One more thing. The red knob to control the needle is missing too.

    The top I'll just have to live with, it's just cosmetic.

    To be continued.
     
  2. BigStevie

    BigStevie United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Hi and welcome to the forum. You’ll find lots of help here for your project and I’m sure you’ll get answers to your questions.
    Happy fettling!
     
  3. MarkC

    MarkC Subscriber

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    You will be able to straighten the vapouriser easily if you take your time and are gentle.
    I have a few with collapsed tops, just had to leave them as the brass was very weak.

    An old Radius i once owned had an old 50 kopek coin in place of the wheel. Maybe an old Kroner coin would make a nice substitute
    IMG-20180406-WA0029.jpeg
     
  4. podbros

    podbros United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Hi @ennpe !
    Welcome to CPL! :) .. Good luck with your search for parts for your lovely Lantern and thank you for sharing! :thumbup:
     
  5. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    Welcome, @ennpe.

    I hope you can get your lantern back running.

    Tony
     
  6. ROBBO55

    ROBBO55 Subscriber

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    Welcome to CPL @ennpe
    As Mark said, the vapouriser can probably be straightened. It's not unusual to find a bent one.
    Contact fogas regarding the missing parts.
    Good luck :)
     
  7. JEFF JOHNSON

    JEFF JOHNSON United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Welcome aboard!:thumbup:
     
  8. Nils Stephenson

    Nils Stephenson Founder Member

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    Welcome to the forum. As the others have said, it should be possible to get the lamp working.

    Just a couple of things at this stage.

    The best way to start would be to disassemble as much as possible and give all the parts a good clean. Don't use anything too abrasive on the nickel parts as they will scratch easily. Keep everything together in a container so nothing gets lost. Take plenty of photos on the way so you remember how it all fits together.

    The vapouriser should be able to be straightened without any problems. Heat and quench a couple of times to soften the brass to avoid any work hardening.

    The top will need to be straightened to roughly the correct shape as the inner top is attached to it and this is what ensures the distance between the jet and the mixing tube stays stable.

    Finally, be patient and ask questions on the way. Good luck.
     
  9. ennpe

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    What kind of mantle is suitable for my Optimus 300?
    I have a couple of 100 C.P. that came with the lamp. Too small?
    Should I get 250 or maybe 300 C.P.?
     
  10. Nils Stephenson

    Nils Stephenson Founder Member

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    As the model name says, it is a 300cp lamp and would use a 300cp mantle. Any 300 to 400cp mantle will work fine. A 250 will be too small.
     
  11. ennpe

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    :thumbup:
    Thanks!
     
  12. ennpe

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    My work so far.
    I don't have any machine so all polishing is done by hand.
    20200513_183029.jpg 20200513_183038.jpg 20200513_183113.jpg 20200513_183121.jpg 20200513_184827.jpg

    How about discoloring from the heat, is it possible to make it look better?
     
  13. MarkC

    MarkC Subscriber

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    Try some Harpic toilet cleaner on a hidden area to start with. I have had great success with this cutting through crusty old soot.
     
  14. Alex74

    Alex74 United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Hi,

    Welcome to the forum and congrats for the project so far. you’ll find that ‘heat tarnish’ may be hard to remove with chemicals. The top has been exposed to many hours of strong heat, and that may have changed the metallurgical phase, depending on the alloy components.
     
  15. M.Meijer

    M.Meijer Subscriber

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    Hello ENNPE,

    You have a very classic lamp there. No matter how many thousands of this model has been produced, it is a model many collectors would like to have. The quality of this lamp has never been bettered.
    The black, removable top and the fine engraving on the tank denotes it as a lamp from the thirties, so the control wheel could, or would have been a red fibre disc.
    The glass is a later replacement; an original would have shown 300 on it, indicating the rated candle power(CP).

    Cleaning , yes, by all means, but this is an old lamp that must have served its owners well for many years. So do not attempt to make it look like new, like trying to remove the natural discolouring due to heat cycles. It all belongs to a veteran like scratches and dents. Congratulations with this lamp, and welcome to this site.

    Regards, Mike
     
  16. ennpe

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    I wont try to remove the discolouring then. Good point.


    How do you all replace the needle in the jet without bending it. I managed to get it back but it was pure luck. There must be some trick.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 20, 2020
  17. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Also, be very careful with Harpic cleaner, especially the Harpic X10 max strength variety. It's extremely useful but I wouldn't use it on anything old, rare or both - it can rip through things you didn't want it to attack before you can stop it!!! It contains a small percentage of hydrochloric acid.
     
  18. David Shouksmith

    David Shouksmith United Kingdom Founder Member

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    Yes, that happened to me once...:oops:

    When it did, I was so mad I went clean around the bend... :doh:
     
  19. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    *Groan* ha ha
     
  20. ennpe

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    So today i got some parts for my Optimus 300.
    Many parts I know what they are for. But for some I am just guessing so I need a little help with that.
    20200519_parts number.jpg
    What are these for?
    To make it easier for you I have numbered them 1 to 7.
     
  21. MarkC

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    Because the lamps are all considerably old, and most likely have been taken apart and muddled up, they will provide a set of seals to cover all eventualities.

    1-4 are filler cap seals of various types. 5 is a widget for screwing in the pricker without taking the lamp apart. 6 a lead seal for the fount/generator and 7 is a graphite seal for the control wheel nut.

    Now you can see that a seal kit is a good start but expensive. A lot of the items are not needed, in future you will know which pieces are required and only buy them.

    These leftovers will come in handy for the next lamp you find.
     
  22. Nils Stephenson

    Nils Stephenson Founder Member

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    Just a minor correction. 3 and 4 are for the level gauge on the later 300P.
     
  23. ennpe

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    Where does it go exactly?
     
  24. MarkC

    MarkC Subscriber

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    Take off your control wheel, and then unscrew the nut behind it and take it off the shaft.

    Inside that nut will be the remains of the old seal, remove that with a screwdriver or something. Put the new graphite over the shaft and screw the nut back on. Adjust tension until it stops leaking under pressure.
     
  25. ennpe

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    Maybe I'm stupid but I can't get it disassembled. It just keeps spinning. This is how much it comes apart.
    20200521_124620.jpg 20200521_124632.jpg

    How do I continue?
     
  26. MarkC

    MarkC Subscriber

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    You are doing it right. Just need to set it up in such a way, that you can gently tap the shaft out and not damage the threads.
    Use a vice or a ring spanner. Be creative! a solution is almost to hand.
     
  27. ennpe

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    It's alive, it's alive.
    Can't upload any video here but I'll at least give you couple of photos.
    There is a 350 CP mantle but it seems to be a bit too big. You can't see that from the photos but live it's obvious. The bottom part of the mantle is not that bright.
    And there is a black ring of soot on the mantle
    20200530_190358.jpg 20200530_191103.jpg
     
  28. ennpe

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    It's been burning for about 90 minutes now and the soot is increasing.
    Too much fuel I guess. Any ideas on how to fix this?
    20200530_202138.jpg
     
  29. MarkC

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    Use a set of calipers and measure the distance between the top of the jet and the bottom of the j-tube. You are looking for around 13mm. If you are able to raise the j-tube up a bit and increase to gap a touch, it may burn a bit better.
    You said it had been dropped on it's top, so this would be my first plan of attack.

    Well done anyway for getting it started. This is why I like fiddling with them, so many variables. It can be frustrating but ultimately very satisfying.
     
  30. Bo Ryman

    Bo Ryman Founder Member Subscriber

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    Make sure the jet is tightned well. A small leakage will make it burns with yellow flames and soot the mantle.
    If you are in need of parts for your lantern, send me an PT, I am quite well provided with spares for Optimus lanterns.
    Bo
     

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