Do you have the electronics skills to design a good home made smoke machine?

All we need to find vacuum leaks in a complex engine is a smoke machine
that works. All it needs to do is...
a. Emit lots of smoke that won't clog up an engine when it condenses, and,
b. Constantly push that smoke at a couple of psi for about a half hour.
We made a smoke machine to work on a friend's kid's old bimmer but the
smoke machine we made failed to generate enough smoke. And now I need a
smoke machine.
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It seems so simple, and yes, we've seen the "cigar in a can" and "burning
rags in a can" videos but they all have problems of not generating enough
smoke for a long enough period of time.
Our machine generates smoke for a long time but not enough smoke! :(
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It's 3 holes in a new paint can with glycerin in a soup can inside.
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The top has a 12VDC diesel glow plug which gets red hot. It is stuck into
the glycerin in a soup can. That generates the smoke.
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We push that smoke out regulated at about 3 psi with an air gun mounted on
the side.
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There's just not enough smoke.
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Do you know what fluid would generate more non-sticky smoke?
Or do you know of a hundred dollar smoke machine that can do the two thing?
a. Emit lots of smoke that won't clog up an engine when it condenses, and,
b. Constantly push that smoke at a couple of psi for about a half hour.
Reply to
Arthur Wood
On Friday, December 15, 2017 at 10:12:20 AM UTC-6, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrot e:
///He is butting in again WOO WOO WOOF!/// Hesh doggy. ... realfixesrealfast.com also on Youtube. I have watched a bunch of his Yo utube videos before since a few years ago. He knows car repair, he explains everything too. ChrisFix on Youtube is good too.
Reply to
allisellis851
I thank you for coming to my aid, and I apologize for not having "believed" in your previous suggestion. (See below why.)
For some reason, I had thought that the "party foggers" had a big opening at low pressure (like the size you can put your hand through) but this one in the Amazon picture seems to have a one-inch opening with a tiny 1/4-inch nozzle.
Is that right?
If so, I don't see why it's not perfect for the task - if it generates the smoke at enough of a pressure to get us a couple of psi for a long period of time. It has to be in the goldilocks range of a few psi (maybe 2 to 4 psi?).
The output is 2000 CFM, which seems like a lot. Is there a way to *convert* that to PSI?
The "wired control" might even be useful for one-man operation while debugging a vaccum leak on an engine.
The machine holds 0.5 liters (1/8 gallon) where a gallon of the fog juice (propylene glycol perhaps?) is $20 which means the machine, over time, is cheaper than the fluid used to make the smoke!
So I do agree, for forty something bucks, it's about the same cost as what it cost me to make that tin-can smoke machine that didn't work.
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Any idea how to calculate the PSI out from the 2000CFM spec?
Reply to
Arthur Wood
Arthur Wood posted for all of us...
From reading replies you don't any research on anything before posting, then you argue and ask more questions. Are you a previous poster under another name?
Reply to
Tekkie®
Smoke rises. Mostly, I don't think a smokey 'pot' needs air pressure for th at smoke to find its way through any leaky vacuum lines. Look around and se e what you have to make a leak detector.
Reply to
allisellis851
:
that smoke to find its way through any leaky vacuum lines. Look around and see what you have to make a leak detector.
The KISS principal.
Reply to
allisellis851
Arthur Wood wrote on 12/15/2017 12:46 PM:
How did you come up with that number?
Not really. Most likely they are using a fan designed to move air against very little pressure, like the "muffin" fans in a PC. They will move a decent volume of air at very low pressure, but the air flow falls off very quickly as the pressure increases. The only way to know for sure is to get the spec sheet of the fan.
Here is a spec sheet of a typical DC cooling fan.
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Notice the flow goes to zero at pressures around 0.1 inches of H2O. Your 2 psi would be 55 inches of H2O.
Maybe they are using a different type of fan, but I don't think you are going to get 2 psi from one of these machines. Maybe you could rig your compressor to it to boost the pressure.
The same cost for something that also isn't likely to work without modification.
See above...
Reply to
rickman
You can calculate the PSI if you know the viscosity of the fluid and the size of the orifice the fluid has to pass through. So you will need to guess at the size of the orifice on the party smoke machine and then look online for about 5 minutes to find a page that will let you just plug the numbers in. I am pretty sure that searching for a "conversions" web site will provide you with a solution. Why do you need 2 to 4 PSI? Eric
Reply to
etpm
In alt.home.repair, on Fri, 15 Dec 2017 17:46:23 -0000 (UTC), Arthur
Why are you concerned with PSI. AIUI, you only need enough pressure to get the smoke out of the machine, or out of the hose**. Plainly it has that much pressure, or the machine wouldn't function for its original purpose.
After that the smoke just has to float around near the vacuum leak and the vacuum will suck it into the engine.
If anything too much pressure would make the smoke zoom by the leak without stopping. LOL Well, not unless it was r eally fast, you'd still probably see some of it get waylaid and sucked into the engine
**Or are you saying it needs enough pressure to get through the hose? The pictures don't show it being used with a hose, but if it doesn't have enough pressure to get it through the hose, then skip the hose and just blow from the machine to the engine. You can put the machine on a chair or stepladder if need be. You can hold it closer to the engine if need be.
The pictures show the smoke going out 3 feet or more. That seems like enough pressure to me, and a bigger problem is likely that there is too much smoke. Is that why you want to use a hose? If there's too much, cut a hole in a big piece of paper near the engine so that only so much can get through the hole. It's not like you have to do this for 50,000 miles, only long enough to find the vacuum leak.
No.
Typically, fog is created by vaporizing proprietary water and glycol-based or glycerin-based fluids or through the atomization of mineral oil. This fluid (often referred to colloquially as fog juice) vaporizes or atomizes inside the fog machine.
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Reply to
micky
Not really possible to be really accurate. You could determine how much poressure is required by calculating the velocity of the fog escaping from the nozzle size and roughly approxemate the pressure utilized to force that flow, but that won't tell you the pressure capability of the system. (it might put out 2000 cfm of smoke at 1/2PSI, and be capable of pumping 1000cfm at 2.5psi, for example.
Reply to
Clare Snyder
They don't use a fan. They use a liquid pump to squirt the fluid through the heater, which vapourizes , producing steam pressure. No fan. I have onem and I've had it apart. The poressure is reasonable, but I'd say less than 5 psi. Commercial smokemachiners run somewhere around 1 - 2 PSI maximum.
The only olproblem I see is getting the HOT smoke (really more like steam) into the fuel system you are testing. It will melt a plastic hose attached to the output - so you need an adapter that acts as a cooler as well - which WILL reduce the pressure somewhat.
\
ou are
Reply to
Clare Snyder
On Fri, 15 Dec 2017 17:17:05 -0500, micky wrote:
Again, you have NO IDEA what you are talking about, Micky. The smoke is pumped INTO the system, with the engine not running - under a low pressure to force it OUT through the leak.
Gettin in deeper, Micky > >**Or are you saying it needs enough pressure to get through the hose? > The pictures don't show it being used with a hose, but if it doesn't >have enough pressure to get it through the hose, then skip the hose and >just blow from the machine to the engine. You can put the machine on a >chair or stepladder if need be. You can hold it closer to the engine >if need be. > >The pictures show the smoke going out 3 feet or more. That seems like >enough pressure to me, and a bigger problem is likely that there is too >much smoke. Is that why you want to use a hose? If there's too much, >cut a hole in a big piece of paper near the engine so that only so much >can get through the hole. It's not like you have to do this for 50,000 >miles, only long enough to find the vacuum leak. > >>The "wired control" might even be useful for one-man operation while >>debugging a vaccum leak on an engine. >> >>The machine holds 0.5 liters (1/8 gallon) where a gallon of the fog juice >>(propylene glycol perhaps?) is $20 which means the machine, over time, is >>cheaper than the fluid used to make the smoke! >> >> >>So I do agree, for forty something bucks, it's about the same cost as what >>it cost me to make that tin-can smoke machine that didn't work. >>
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>> >>Any idea how to calculate the PSI out from the 2000CFM spec? > >No. > > >Typically, fog is created by vaporizing proprietary water and >glycol-based or glycerin-based fluids or through the atomization of >mineral oil. This fluid (often referred to colloquially as fog juice) >vaporizes or atomizes inside the fog machine. >
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Reply to
Clare Snyder
On Fri, 15 Dec 2017 13:52:41 -0500, Tekkie® wrote:
You thinking the same guy that argued about tire mounting and ballancing???
My thought too. Mabee his twin brother from a different mother???
Reply to
Clare Snyder
I have seen people do it manually. They take a big puff on the cigar and blow into a piece of vacuum hose. It works okay if you have good enough side-lighting that you can see where the smoke is coming out. --scott
Reply to
Scott Dorsey
First lose the glow plug, more smoke = more surface area for the oil to cook on. I built a paint can unit as a demo, generates a LOT of smoke, more than my Snap-On unit does.
Used nichrome wire wrapped around fiberglass tiki wicks. Wound a total of 4 coils. Two are in series and then those are in parallel with the other 2, gives you a LOT of surface area and uses under 12 amps of 12 volt current.
Next a common propane regulator. You do not want high PSI in the system, REAL easy to damage parts that cannot handle pressure. The propane regulator can take 90-200 psi and drop it to under 1/2 psi (11-12 inches of water column, OEM smoke machine standard is no higher than 13 in/wc)
Made an air bar that puts the air out in a nice even ring.
Made a low pressure check valve on the output, that way you can shut down the machine with it attached and it won't pull fuel vapor back in.
And a flow meter and adjustable flow so you can tell what is actually going on.
Basically a home built version of a red line unit.
Reply to
Steve W.
snipped-for-privacy@whidbey.com posted for all of us...
This mutant original poster (not you) doesn't do any research so when you used that word it is out of his league.
Reply to
Tekkie®
Find a few hippies and buy them a couple ounces of marijuana. There will be lots of smoke......
You cant rent smoke machines like bands use on stage, at a music store or theatrical supplies place. PRobably wont cost all that much to rent for a few hours....
Reply to
oldschool

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