Repair of Tilley 246 ‘pork pie’ hood

Discussion in 'Fettling Forum' started by presscall, Jul 6, 2020.

  1. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    A project from a clear-out of ‘deep storage’ in my shed, a ‘2nd version’ Tilley 246 ‘pork pie’ in need of attention.

    The hood to be attended to is the one on the left. The one on the right’s from my ‘3rd version’ example as a model for what I wanted to reconstruct.

    1A3185FB-1306-4972-A952-97E73EA69129.jpeg


    What you see there is a much earlier repair, nicely done by somebody with the use of copper strip and copper rivets, enamelled cap bolted to point where the strips converge.

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    Hanging on by a thread, as it were. Time to construct something more substantial.

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    All credit to whoever had done that repair though. It must have been in an era where the lantern had regular use and not as a collector’s item. It was valued enough to do that repair and the solder work to the base. Roughly wiped with lead solder, functional, robust and no concession made to cosmetic appearance.

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    Base too had become porous in several places.

    A55DF33C-592A-4E09-8F6E-23DA9E318411.jpeg


    I intend to retain those signs of a hard working life. Plenty of immaculate restorations in the Lamp Reference Gallery but this won’t be one of them. Still, like that former owner, I’m making the effort to keep it alive and kicking!

    My CCS-themed hobby threw up a scrap fuel tank and the dished-out base panel provided just the right contour to cut out this component, the rim of the top turned down with Knipex pliers.

    A76A2601-D3D1-4E64-A29C-F9E22986C041.jpeg

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    The marker pen spot provided a reference point when adjusting for ‘fit’.

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    Those projecting ‘lugs’ are to provide positive location and stop the components moving when silbrazing (‘hard’ soldering) them together. Ground off subsequently to allow the air inlet shield to slip over the hood. Joining surfaces cleaned up with an abrasive wheel in a Dremel.

    EA9F36F3-358D-4D7A-A560-97C394C40B32.jpeg

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    Silbrazed ...

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    ... dunked in boiling water to dissolve the glass-like borax flux residue.

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    Consistent with the rest of the lantern I didn’t go for either shiny brass or barbecue paint matt black. Just a wipe-over with a rag, the patches of oxide burnt off by the silbrazing torch will soon oxidise ‘back to black’ in use.

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    Cap back on ...

    3568B020-6212-4FF4-BD18-BD92202F2762.jpeg


    ... burner installed, must find a mantle.

    6CA3A5CF-3AC8-4AA7-981E-5CBEF6A288C5.jpeg


    John
     
  2. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Lit. I doubt it was ever lit in daylight during its working life!

    83A0CC26-C912-4DB2-8B4D-CA1B44D29FE9.jpeg
     
  3. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Within an hour of the first firing after the repair in fact.

    F4747A85-B369-40A5-B23B-9F03812D22B0.jpeg
     
  4. Gary Waller

    Gary Waller Subscriber

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    Looks great and is working well. The hoods on the porkpie lamps are a problem as they become very fragile.
    It’s a neat repair...:clap::clap:
     
  5. george

    george United States Subscriber

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    Nice job, looks great!
     
  6. JEFF JOHNSON

    JEFF JOHNSON United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Well fettled!:thumbup::thumbup:
     
  7. ROBBO55

    ROBBO55 Subscriber

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    Nice work John. It should be usable for many more years now. :thumbup:
     
  8. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    Well done, John.

    I often wonder what happens to require solder on the base plate of a brass-bottomed X246s...:-k

    Cheers

    Tony
     
  9. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Is that a known phenomenon Tony? Had me wondering too. You’re the scientist! I know, not your field. George (Kerophile) over on CCS would probably have an idea, as a former metallurgist. I’ll give him a shout.

    John
     
  10. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    John

    I've seen a few brass-bottomed tanks with that king of solder work (on the plate, not the rim). Were they railway fettlers lamps being repeatedly placed on rocky ballast?

    George might have some insight.

    Tony
     
  11. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    That’s plausible, certainly, and this example of mine has taken a hammering to the base rim. Weight of the thing could induce the holder to plonk it down with some force!

    John
     
  12. MrAlexxx

    MrAlexxx Subscriber

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    Well done John!

    Alex
     
  13. Buggerlugs

    Buggerlugs Australia Subscriber

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    @presscall
    That sure does look fine, if you hadn't shown the earlier photos who would know.
     
  14. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    @Tony Press
    I did, and he said:
     
  15. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    @presscall

    That’s a great answer from George - certainly an understanding of metallurgy that goes beyond my recollections of basic chemistry.

    There’s a lesson in there, I think: always clean your Tilley tanks regularly by dumping the old kero and replacing it with new.

    Cheers

    Tony
     
  16. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Indeed, or by following the directions on the war-time steel font of my EX-100.

    DB3CBC17-4707-47AB-8E1A-7CC2179EC243.jpeg

    Ironic really, the EX can’t have had that fastidious attention during its life and is pinhole-free, the brass font 246 falling prey to galvanic electrolysis.

    John
     
  17. Henry Plews

    Henry Plews Subscriber

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    Perhaps it's just coincidence but in my experience - two X256's and one TL136 - it's always the pork pie tanks which suffer this phenomenon.

    Henry.
     
  18. podbros

    podbros United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Hum... Interesting?

    Here's something I found...Most modern Brasses are 67% Copper and 33% Zinc..However the amount of Copper may range from 55% to 95% by weight, with the amount of Zinc varying from 5% to 40%.
    Lead is commonly added to Brass at a concentration of around 2%.

    The Brass used then may have had a higher or lower amount of Copper or Zinc than before the war or later on due to shortages of supplies??? ( the shortages of Brass and the effects on Tilley founts being produced in Steel are well noted)
     
  19. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom Subscriber

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    @podbros
    What you suggest makes sense together with @Henry Plews ’s longstanding aquaintance with the marque and his observation and Tony’s earlier comment
    I’m in the process of draining/flushing/purging (with Marine Clean) the Tilley font and since I’ve some POR15 on order for a Governor paraffin stove tank riddled with stress cracks I’ll pop some of the sealer in the Tilley font for good measure - fuel valve/pickup tube removed first!

    John
     

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