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Old 01-30-12, 11:50 AM   #151
Xringer
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Default Methanol looks easy to flush, using upsidedown trick

In http://www.propanecouncil.org/upload...rol%20Vol1.pdf
it says:

"Methanol is traditionally over-used if one pint is good, more must be even better. This over-dosing is
sometimes compounded by the fact the over-dosing may be replicated at multiple points along the
distribution chain, even when the propane is sufficiently dry. One marketer explained that when filling a
bobtail truck from a bulk tank, his procedure called fo r first filling the connecting hose with methanol.
This procedure was performed with no measurements being made as to the dryness of the propane more
is better. However, a drop in temperature can result in most of the methanol phase separating to the
bottom of the tank.
Although the methanol does vaporize with the propane and water, it does have a lower
boiling point than water. Therefore, methanol will continue to concentrate in tanks that cannot be
completely emptied."

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Old 01-30-12, 12:30 PM   #152
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xringer View Post
On a cold morning, maybe I should wait for a few folks to get a fill-up before my tank is filled??

If my application for propane was a Mini-split, I'm not even sure those systems use a drier.?.
http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1.../referFlow.jpg
The modern minisplits have no dryers.
But when creating a DIY-minisplit it`s wise to have one assemled in the circuit.!


==============

Sorry,In my earlier post the .jpg -files do not show.I do not understand why!

Edit:

Jippii,I succeeded!
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Old 01-31-12, 12:06 AM   #153
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Well, I had planned to abandon my Propane refining and just buy some real HC refrigerants. In Aus we have a company by the name of HyChill that sells the real stuff, and will let it go in 9KG bottles, so I got in contact with them in order to purchase some. The thinking of course was that it's simple hydrocarbon gas, however at $50 per Kilo + $150 per 9KG cylinder (they wanted over $900 for a 9KG of R290 and a 9KG of R600a), I'll keep doing it myself.

Hells bells.. I can buy R22 on the black market for less than that! If that's the price of Hydrocarbon refrigerants, it's no wonder fridgies keep selling the flourinated stuff. There's no cost incentive to change at all.

My filtered and cleaned BBQ propane works out at $27 for the gas, and $50 for a very large filter drier, plus some time. Now as this is a hobby I can write off my time, and come out with "clean enough" gas at less than $9 / KG

<Grumble>
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Old 01-31-12, 02:39 AM   #154
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Ok, so having to go back to filtering my own Propane prompted me to hook it all up and get a photo of it like I promised.



I invert the cylinder about every 2 hours.
When it's upright, all input valves are wide open. I throttle the output valve on the machine to get the head pressure about 100psi above the input pressure. This rapidly cools the tank as it uses the tank as an evaporator.

When I invert the cylinder, I open the output valve wide open and throttle the input valve on the machine. This makes sure the input line (with the big filter) has a solid liquid fill. It flashes to gas in the input valve block before being compressed, condensed and sent back as liquid. This slowly warms the tank.

I've got a spare fridge compressor here somewhere that I'm thinking about setting up for a long-term recirculating filter device. It depends on how effective I can be at regenerating the dessicant in the filter. I hold it under a high vacuum and hit it with the mapp torch to drive off the moisture trapped in the dessicant. Apparently it needs to get over about 450F to do it properly, but I'm not sure I'm that game!
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Old 01-31-12, 04:33 AM   #155
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BradC

Fine pioneer venture you are going through!
Still urging you to cool down the tank (in lack of freezer ,collect some dry ice (=CO2 if available) to hasten the segregation in the tank!

In one of my ealier image it was shown the phase segregation could be fairly quick (even in 3 minutes at heavily (?) decreased temperature ,which was not indicated in the issue).


You seem to have siphon tank (two valves) ,so easy for you to "ventilate"
the tank frequenly and suck the real thing from the right phase level in the tank!

BTW:
Are you going to have POE(PAG) -oil (old/fresh?) in your system or mineral oil?

PS:I dobt they do not use methanol in Australia due to reasonable ambient temperatures (worth checking out).
Excessive propylene (ethen) cause glide!
Any analysis available from HYChill?
What is the resolution for wet/dry sight glass?
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Old 01-31-12, 06:10 AM   #156
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Yes, having the correct bottle helps. This is a standard 9KG propane cylinder with a two valve stem I got from the UK. It has model aircraft brass tube as the dip tube, so it's pretty invincible. I bought 2 valves, so I've done a 9KG and a 4KG bottle. Very handy for liquid charging systems.

Low temperatures would certainly help the process. My current issues with that are :
- It's sitting between 25 - 40C in Perth at the moment.
- My freezer is not big enough for the 9KG bottle
- Even if my freezer *were* big enough my Wife would kill me
- Even in winter we never see below 0.

I have thought about stuffing the bottle in a big cooler and packing it with dry ice and ethanol (like I used to do to recover refrigerant). I'll put that off if I can as dry ice is not cheap around here.

I'm running the cylinder in an extended cooling cycle at the moment. I'll wrap it in towels and stuff it in an esky to see how cold I can make it get itself.

I'm not sure about the resolution of the dry-eye. They are supposed to react differently with HC than they are specified to do with HCFC & HFC. I'm trying to get hold of a real Sporlan dry-eye designed for HC, but nobody stocks them here and I can't find any on E-bay.

Given the qty of water we are talking about. My 162 (16 CU In of dessicant) drier should pull it *all* out and then some. I suspect I just need to get it cold enough to help the water separate and it'll suck it out of the bottle when I invert it.

I can't believe they want $50 a kilo for HC refrigerant. These guys must wear an eye patch and have a parrot on their shoulder! Oh well, back to camping gas cans for R600a and BBQ's galore for R290

<Edit>
Extended cooling managed to get it down to ~50psi, which is about -1.1C. Obviously more insulation required (I just sat it on blocks and wrapped it in beach towels).

Will try again tomorrow.

<Edit again>

Sticking with Mineral oil. It's easy to dry out with a vacuum and it's less than 1/4 of the cost of any of the synthetics. In addition all the scrounged compressors I have are either for R12 or R22 and all have Suniso 4GS oil in them (which I have 4 litres of in the garage).

Oh, and no Methanol in propane here. We just don't get freezing issues no matter how wet it gets.

Last edited by BradC; 01-31-12 at 08:40 AM..
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Old 01-31-12, 11:44 AM   #157
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Great pic Brad! It sure looks like it's capable of doing the job.
It looks like the kind of set up a professional HVAC guy would be using for his task.

The high price of R290 is bad for you, but good for us DIYers who want to learn
the best way to convert wet BBQ fuel into clean and dry R290..
Please keep up the good work..
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Old 01-31-12, 07:54 PM   #158
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Yeah, the tank valves were a good investment. Cost me about 26 pounds each shipped. So each bottle cost me about $80 total. I know it seems silly when you guys can buy a brand new mastercool recovery cylinder for just over $100, but here they start at $250 and work up from there.

This hobby would be so much cheaper if I was in the States!
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Old 02-13-12, 12:31 PM   #159
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Great work BradC , thanks so much for your input.

Any further information on drying and reusing filter-dryer?
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Old 02-13-12, 05:21 PM   #160
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Great work BradC , thanks so much for your input.

Any further information on drying and reusing filter-dryer?
Sort of. Pulling a vacuum on the filter/drier and heating it with a torch certainly drives off water and contaminants. The vacuum pump oil reeks of mercaptan.

I pull the vacuum down to about 100 microns, and heating the filter drives it up to around 750. I then repeat this procedure until further heating stops the vacuum rising that far. The drier certainly removes mercaptan and water from the Propane and vac/heat removes them from the drier, however I can't really quantify how much. Now I think about it I suppose I could weigh the drier before/after.

I have a small low temperature compressor/condenser unit arriving today that is rated to 200W @ -40C, so I should be able to build a bottle cooler to experiment with water separation.

I also got in contact with Danfoss about their HC range of sight glasses, however have had no luck in obtaining some yet. Nobody seems to stock them anywhere.

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