Solar 'Spit-Fire' 500cp lantern - Union Metal Works, Hong Kong

Discussion in 'Lamp Action Gallery' started by Paul Aslanides, Apr 29, 2021.

  1. Paul Aslanides

    Paul Aslanides Australia Subscriber

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    @ColinG Good Work on this lantern! Lovely lantern. Here's one I found recently, in poor condition, took a bit of work to get it running properly. It's my first encounter with the Spitfire starter of any kind. A veritable flame thrower. A good cleanup, new filler cap seal, new pump cup, new pips; the pricker rod was severely carboned up, restricting the flow. Peerless mantle 24 A. You will excuse the pump knob - it was the only piece of 5/8" brass I had.
    Thanks to Colin for uploading the diagram. I see that there should be a small filter cup on the end of the pickup tube for the jet blaster. This is missing, as is the red plastic pump knob.
    Also, the barrel of the NRV spit apart on dismantling, so I had to use another, a mismatch.
    But it works. Any directions for spare parts, please ?
    The NRV has a smaller thread, so perhaps it is the same size as the NRV in the Handi,
    I reckon. I'm desperate for at least two spare valves of that size. Looks the same as any other nrv, but the thread is of a smaller diameter. Any pointers, gentlemen ?
    Question: What position should the control wheel be in, for normal running ?
    With the arrow up, at 12 o'clock, the pricker is up. The lantern seems to run o.k. with the arrow at 3 or 9 o'clock. At 6 o'clock it opens the supply valve ? But it seems to run o.k. in the other two positions.

    Money Shots -
    Solar Money Shot #2.jpg Solar Money Shot #1.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2021
  2. Henry Plews

    Henry Plews Subscriber

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    NORMALLY, the pointer is at 6 o'clock, this ensures the foot valve (supply valve) is fully open and equally as important, the needle is fully down.
     
  3. podbros

    podbros United Kingdom Subscriber

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    It certainly does work ... very well by the look of it! :thumbup:
     
  4. JEFF JOHNSON

    JEFF JOHNSON United Kingdom Subscriber

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    That does the job.:thumbup::thumbup:
     
  5. ROBBO55

    ROBBO55 Subscriber

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    It's putting out a good amount of ĺight. :thumbup:
    I should get my Solar working. :-k
     
  6. Paul Aslanides

    Paul Aslanides Australia Subscriber

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    Thanks, fellas. Yes, it throws out a good light. It's that Peerless 24 A mantle, the first I've ever used.

    Henry Plews Thanks. Thought so.
    It ran quite well last night, and for a few hours this morning. But now,

    unfortunately she's playing up. I think the foot valve is stuck closed now, and / or there's a blockage in the valve or pick up tube. I can see the spring through the slot in the end of the valve, at the very bottom of the assembly. ( Might be inverted in the photo ). The valve barrel, however, will not budge, and it's so easy to split these barrel ends with too much force on the screwdriver.

    Will try the heat and quench method tomorrow, in hope to free up the foot valve for dismantling. It may just need a cleanout and a new pip.

    Oops! I've forgotten to put the spinning Bowden cable into the Preston loop. Better do that too. Still getting small, black particles in the kero every time I drain the fount.

    Cheers.



    Solar Blocked pickup Tube.jpg
     
  7. ROBBO55

    ROBBO55 Subscriber

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    Paul, I use an old drill chuck to hold the barrel on the NRV's and foot valves. Much safer than a screwdriver.
     
  8. Paul Aslanides

    Paul Aslanides Australia Subscriber

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    ROBBO55 Thank you. Good idea. It's worked well, finally got the barrel off the valve.
    The pip is approx. 5 m/m dia. with a hole in the centre for the rod to push the valve open. The existing spring on the left, I considered to strong, so have used one from the NRV refurb kit. Looks like the pip is due for replacement too. Solar 500 Foot Valve #1.jpg Solar 500 Foot Valve #1.jpg Solar 500 Foot Valve #2.jpg Freed up the nrv, reassembled, and she's running well again, with no flare - ups. But, how to make a 5 m/m pip with a hole in the middle ?
     
  9. Paul Aslanides

    Paul Aslanides Australia Subscriber

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  10. ROBBO55

    ROBBO55 Subscriber

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    Paul, your welcome.
    To make the foot value seal, I drilled a 2mm (or maybe 2.5mm) hole in the viton sheet then punched the 5mm around it.
     
  11. Paul Aslanides

    Paul Aslanides Australia Subscriber

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    Right. I'll order a sheet of 3 m/m Viton. Difficult to drill a clean hole in such material, but it's gotta be done. Cheers.
     
  12. Paul Aslanides

    Paul Aslanides Australia Subscriber

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    I see that the 'Sea Anchor' lanterns are for sale new at AU$125, complete with spanner, mantle, filler bottle, etc.
    So I wonder if the internals will also fit the Solar lanterns. If only there was an established spare parts supplier in China. Hence I shall ask my Chinese neighbours and friends to see what they can find. Perhaps there's a supplier of spares in Hong Kong.
     
  13. Graham P

    Graham P Australia Subscriber

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    Some thin wall brass tube (sharpen the edge like a punch) fit in a wooden file handle. lubricate with soapy water rotate with pressure (should get a better hole than a drill)
     
  14. Fireexit1

    Fireexit1 United Kingdom Subscriber

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    I bought a hole punch - I think for leatherworkers - five quid in the Lidl "occasional" section - the punches rotate about the head of the tool allowing many different sizes to be cut. Makes short work of rubber.
     
  15. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    That's worth knowing... I'll keep a look out for a set.
     
  16. Graham P

    Graham P Australia Subscriber

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    Some thin wall brass tube (sharpen the edge like a punch) fit in a wooden file handle. lubricate with soapy water rotate with pressure (should get a better hole than a drill)
     
  17. Graham P

    Graham P Australia Subscriber

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    Some thin wall brass tube (sharpen the edge like a punch) fit in a wooden file handle. lubricate with soapy water rotate with pressure (should get a better hole than a drill)
     
  18. Fireexit1

    Fireexit1 United Kingdom Subscriber

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    @ColinG
    in Lid-els yesterday in the "small hand tool section" - "rotary leather hole punch" - £ 3.99
     
  19. ColinG

    ColinG United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Ta! I'll have to take a gander next time we're passing.
     
  20. Paul Aslanides

    Paul Aslanides Australia Subscriber

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    Thanks, fellas. I will make a new pip, and reinstall the original spring, for positive closing. And yes! Now that you've mentioned it, I've found the leather hole punch tool with the rotating head. Forgot that I had one. Cheers.
     

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