Moderators: Shaun, The Trouts
My Centrifuge build
I wanted to put together a thread to document my build. I've done several searches on the subject, and have only found a couple of threads on the internet that documented the process well. I don't have acces to the pics yet. I will up load those soon and keep them updated as I go.

To start out with, I puchased the PO Boy kit from WVO along with the booster feed system. I like the designe from Simple Centrifuge better, but I will only be doing less than 1000 gal per year so I couldn't justify spending $650 for their bowl when I could get a PO Boy kit and feed cone for $350. I think the SC bowl is worth the $$, and would have gone that route if I needed to be able to do an entire tote at one time, but that's not my circumstance.

For a motor, I purchased a used 115V .33HP motor off ebay for approx $100 delivered. The motor needs to have a 5/8" shaft that's at least 2" long IMHO, and the motor needs to be able to face mount to what ever outer housing you decide to use.

For the outer housing, I purchased a used 16 qt pressure cooker off ebay for $40 delivered. I thought about trying to use a large stock pot, but the wall thickness is very thin and I think it would be difficult to work with. A new 16 qt pressure cooker runs $70 at the local grocery store, and I have one of those new ones that I bought a couple years ago to can my veggies. A lot of folks on ebay want that much for a used one, so it took me a week or two to track down a used one for a good price. The one I got was old and well worn, but works great for this project. Anything smaller than 16 qt will likly be too small for the bowl to fit in. The outer diameter of the bowl is around 9". The reason that I went with the pressure cooker is because the aluminum body is thick enough that I can tap it if I need to, and it's strong enought to provide a good mounting surface. I also like the idea of having a lid that locks on in the same place every time. The pressure cooker lid is also thick enough to be able to drill and tap. It won't have a lot of threads to provide a lot of strenght, but it will be better than the sheet metal that's used for a stock pot. I will need to add a fitting to the lid to allow the incoming oil to go into the feed cone. I plan on using a piece of copper tubing to deliver the oil slightly off center to keep it out of the collet the mounts the motor to the bowl.

The PO Boy kit has additional holes in the bowl that allow the contents to drain when the motor slows down, so I needed a dam to keep the clean oil seperate from the dirty stuff. I ended up getting an 8 qt stainless stock pot from Wall Mart for $7. The cheap ones work best because the base is thin making it easier to cut. This stock pot was about 9" in diameter. The base of the bowl is just over 8", and there's a 1/2" lip that sticks out about 1 1/2" up from the base of the bowl. The lip likely serves to make sure that any clean oil comes off the bowl at this point instead of migrating down to the bottom edge of the bowl. I used a right angle grinder with a cut off wheel to cut the bottom 1 1/2" off the pot. That bottom piece will serve as my dam. I didn't want to have to transfer the motor's bolt pattern into the stailess pan, and then have my fittings go through both the pressure cooker and the stainless pot. Instead I cut a 7" diameter circle out of the bottom of the stainless pot using a pair of Left Aviation snips (red handle). This hole allowed room for the bolts that mount the motor to the pressure cooker, but still provided me with a 1" flange to use for mounting it to the bottom of my pressure cooker.
It also gives me room to add the train for the dirty sump oil without having to deal with the pot. In remaining 1" lip of the stainless pan I drilled some #12 holes and will drill and tap the pressure cooker for some #10-32 pan head screws and use RTV Silicone to form a gasket/seal.

I will be welding up a stand out of angle iron that I get from a local weld shop at cost.

For fittings, I'm using mostly 3/4" pipe fittings because I already have the tap. At my previous job, I had my own mill, lathe, and assortment of cutting bits. So when I needed a 3/4" fitting in something, I would take it to work, chuck it in the mill, and put the hole where ever I wanted. My current job does not provide me with that opportunity SO I use a 7/8" step drill to create the initial hole. I picked up a new 3/4" taper pipe ream off ebay for $17 plus shipping (most of them run $80 or more new), and it will ream the 7/8" hole up to the correct diameter for my 3/4" NPT tap. I also done have a tap handle quite that big (ream and tap are same size), but I happened to have a scrap piece of heavy walled 1" sq tubing laying in the scrap pile. Turns out that the tap and ream slide into the end rather nicely. So I will be cutting off a 2" piece and welding a T handle to it to make my tap/ream handle.

I will be building a heater for it as well and will document that process as well.

Pics to come.
Location: SW Indiana (Brazil) | Registered: August 05, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Any progress on the CF build?
Registered: October 30, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Yes, its complete and working. I've been busy with remodel projects on the house and haven't had a chance to come back and post any of the pictures. It's not the cleanest build I've ever done, and it certainly isn't UL approved, but it works pretty good.
Location: SW Indiana (Brazil) | Registered: August 05, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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