Bring out your Hurlocks

Discussion in 'Stove Forum' started by cottage hill bill, May 17, 2017.

  1. Dean

    Dean United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Well it is now day seven of enforced isolation, so I ventured down to the shed!
    While I was there, I brought down from its shelf my "Hurlock" style stove.
    It came indoors for a little tlc and clean and to try to work out which, if any, of @cottage hill bill 's numerical examples it most resembled.
    I can safely say it would be a number one: details as follows:-
    There are no labels, no transfers, no stampings or other obvious markings on it.
    It has a steel tank, steel spirit cup and steel flame ring. The tank and pan support arms are painted a shade of green, as was the exterior of the storage tin.
    It has an articulating turned brass pump handle and brass wind shield.
    The pot support wires have a slight indent/kink (by design) just about one inch back from the open ends.
    It has the spares tin, with the screwdriver/jet removal tool, some washers, spare nipple, pricker and spare pump leather.

    I did have another a while back, which I believed had remained unfired. That one had the Hurlock transfer and, IIRC, that was more of a no.3. I shall have to see whether there are still pictures of it anywhere. In the spares tin of that one was a small square cardboard package of white powder, covered in a wax paper, which I assume was the basis for a lighting paste that needed hydration. I still have that as I was unsure of what it was and wouldn't send it through the post.

    Apart from the usual need for cleaning and refurbishment, the only obvious thing wrong with mine is the absence of a screw on TOP lid for the canister.

    Regards
    Dean
     
  2. ArchMc

    ArchMc SotM Winner Subscriber

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    That white powder will ignite (I tried a small amount of it on a metal scrap), and is presumably for priming. I don’t know about mixing it with water. It will eat holes through the tin if it escapes from the wax paper.

    ….Arch
     
  3. cottage hill bill

    cottage hill bill Subscriber

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    It it the remains of cubes of solidified alcohol. They were packed in a white paper box in the spares kit for pre-heating. It is still available as a fuel from Coghlan's and others. There was a full box of them in the stove I labeled as number 1 at the beginning of this post.
     
  4. ArchMc

    ArchMc SotM Winner Subscriber

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    Actually yes, mine were in a box, but were mostly powdered with some larger chunks. Some had escaped the box, and had eaten holes in the bottom of the spares tin.

    I’ve never been sure exactly what the fuel was — it burns vigorously. Is it really the same as the Coghlan’s meta fuel?

    ….Arch

    ….Arch
     
  5. presscall

    presscall United Kingdom SotM Winner SotY Winner Subscriber

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    Meta tablets (metaldehyde) were in use in the UK in the 1920's as a Meta stove fuel but also to prime paraffin stoves. Certainly I've purchased paraffin stoves with a stock of Meta tablets in the stove tin.

    DEB95FE9-B4A4-431F-A4E5-E95380BB6AB6.jpeg
     
  6. Dean

    Dean United Kingdom Subscriber

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    OK, so it seems to me (in my usual bumbling way) that from the accounts of @ArchMc and @presscall and my own limited experience, the "powder" in the box with the Hurlock is a different formulation to the META tablets. I draw this conclusion for the reasons that:
    1 I too have some old meta tablets acquired with old stoves which have not necessarily been stored "well"- none of these have disintegrated into powder form; none have wreaked havoc or corroded their storage places. Accounts on other threads suggest they are still usable.
    2 The Hurlock powder I have appears to be in powder and not tablet form. It has been stored (not necessarily well) for perhaps 70 years in a box, wrapped in a wax paper and then inside a tin within a tin, the outer of which appears to have been in damp conditions at times.
    3 ArchMc's experience seems different to mine in that his powder has not been so well protected by the wax wrapper, such that it has eaten through the steel tin in places. So can there be any inherent properties of the wax wrapper, other than keeping the powder dry?
    4 If the spares tin was intended for military issue and field use, then the effectiveness versus the danger of the powder would have been a consideration. Meta tablets would have been available at the time, but at additional cost.
    Just my thoughts.
    Dean
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2021
  7. ArchMc

    ArchMc SotM Winner Subscriber

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    I believe my stove may have been in storage for decades when I bought it, so the corrosion may be a slow process.

    ….Arch
     
  8. Sedgman

    Sedgman Subscriber

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    Added my Hurlock, similar to Nbr 2 for completeness. Has brass windshield but fount steel.
    0600.jpg
     
  9. ROBBO55

    ROBBO55 Subscriber

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    @Sedgman
    It's interesting that your stove has no stamped markings but has the bare metal pump handle (no heat insulation washers) :-k