A follow up message about a steamer that blew up like a terrorist
I sent this out yesterday about a steamer that blew up. I had a few
people email me who are smarter than me in this area and I asked the
jeweler Peggy for more detail.
My friend Bob Lynn in California copied me on an email sent to his
employees. Bob is an accomplished machinist:
The following is another reason why I have been very particular
about getting a steamer in stainless & why I have checked the
over pressure valve on a regular basis, even though it's less
than 3 years old.
The machine they had appears to an aluminum casting. Aluminum,
when cast, is normally much weaker than steel & subject to
serious corrosion problems that often weaken the casting. Also
notice the condition of the "spare". The machines appear to have
been around a number of years.
If you examine the photos there is what appears to be visible
corrosion on the valves. I give an exceptionally high likelihood
that they hadn't tested the over pressure valve recently - or the
explosion probably wouldn't have happened.
Worse yet, I've seen shops where the safety valve leaked & so
somebody "fixed" it by screwing it shut instead of replacing it.
That particular fix can turn the boiler into a bomb. A
replacement valve is a $20 plumbing part, common where plumbing
is sold so there is no excuse for not replacing it if it leaks.
Safety has to stay a top priority & it's everybody's job to
point out unsafe things or procedures.
So I wrote the jeweler and asked her about the steamer and what
procedures they used and WHO MADE THIS STEAMER.
This was the answer I just received:
It was called Steamstress Royal. The manufacturer of the steamer
was Electro Steam (1978) Ltd out of Montreal Canada.
The steamer was checked weekly on the valve. The rubber gaskets
did not blow. It was running under normal operating pressure.
So I wanted to follow up and let you know the scoop. When I had my
store for 25 years we had a Steammaster and I had to replace a valve
one and every year the rubber gaskets. Worked like a charm.
Here are the same pictures from the past post