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#74737 02/03/07 06:07 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,803
Been playing with waste vegetable oil [ WVO ] with the intent to use it as free fuel in my central heating boiler. I have a good supply of used french-fry [ chips, frites ] oil lined up from a couple of restaurants. I’m reluctant to go the whole hog and convert it to esters, because of the toxic chemicals, messing with waste-products, titrating, washing, etc., plus my pump has butyl-rubber seals that the esters will attack, meaning changing out the pump to Viton.

I’m going try to use the oil straight, [ that is without diluting it with #1 or #2 oil ] after filtering out the chicken legs and drying it, but I need to heat it to reduce its viscosity to near #2 agricultural mazout. Viscosity before the burner is not a problem, as I already have a pre-heater capable of feeding the pump warm oil, but can only take that up to 150ºF [65ºC]- it's those darned pump seals again.

I have a good spare Italian top-spec. 35Kw oil-burner rigged for trials; c/w oil-pump, flame out, HT spark ignition & air turbine. My plan is to make an induction heater and put a coil round the injector bar just prior to the nozzle tip; [ 7/8” diameter x 6” long drilled-steel injector bar, copper tube rear oil feed-in, pressure set at 180 psi ]. I calculate I need 300ºF [150ºC] and about 200W at first call, reducing as the flame heats up the injector. From the oxide-color of the existing steel bar, flame-heat never exceeds about 350ºF. The thermostat part is easy, 2 range oven-thermocouples on the injector bar [ control + safety overheat ].

Can any of you clever folks point me to how to build the high-frequency part. I promise not to electrocute myself! [Linked Image]

And of course, I’ll publish all the pics here as another project.


Wood work but can't!
#74738 02/03/07 06:49 PM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 814
Alan, couldn't you use a fuel line heater from an automotive diesel with a 12V transformer? A lot of WVO burners run it all winter thru their old Mercedes Benzes with a fuel line heater setup. There are some good sites where you could probably get the info you need on the parts. There are a few WVO burners on this site: There are some other sites devoted to the subject.

#74739 02/04/07 02:25 AM
Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 827
Likes: 1

This guy seems to have played with induction heating quite a bit. But what about just starting with the fuel oil and sensing the point where it would add enough heat to switch over to the other fuel source?

I'm working on the magic mirror for the enchanted castle I got my Sweetie Pie (4-1/2 years old) for Christmas. I think your project is probably more practical.

#74740 02/04/07 08:08 AM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
Alan, Joe's suggestion sounds a bit more practical IMHO.

I know your one heck of a talented guy.

Casting Metals In Your Backyard

But you want to put together a home made induction heater to heat a flammable product in the house that you and your family sleep in?

Perhaps something a little more conventional in the home?

I got to help repair the fire damage in a animal fat refinery where a pipe burst that was filled with pressurized hot animal fat. It worked like a flame thrower until the pumps where shut down.

I can imagine that if you accidentally overheat the vegetable oil you could burst a pipe and have instant ignition of the oil.

Good luck no matter what you do. [Linked Image]


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician

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