Coleman 502 new to me

Discussion in 'Fettling Forum' started by Kayaker70, Oct 8, 2018.

  1. Kayaker70

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    New member and my second post.

    While searching for parts for Optimus 111 I came across a Coleman 502.
    I bought it for $5 from a person who said they never used it and it had been given to them.
    It was made in July 81.
    I have never used a Coleman stove but after searching on this site it looks like I have picked up one that is well thought of.
    Should I just load it up with white gas and try it out? Or
    Is there series of steps I should go through to verify that it is in good working condition, before firing it up/
    tks
    Bob

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  2. OptimusPrime Canada

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    Get at the very least a fuel cap seal. There are plenty here that will set you straight, but any stove that is new to you...deserves new seals and a safety inspection. ( make sure the nrv valve works, and the gland packing is sound. ) a little searching on here will give you all the info you need. With white gas/ coleman fuel, a little caution goes a long way. They are great stoves...where abouts in BC you from?




    here is a walk through..

    http://www.colemancollectorsforum.com/post?id=4836387
     
  3. cottage hill bill

    cottage hill bill Subscriber

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    Old Coleman Parts is just down the road a bit from you in Washington. Mike there will have all the parts you need and offers great customer service. Stick with Coleman Fuel (or one of the other name brands). Replacing the neoprene pump cup with a leather one is a good move for someone in a cold climate. The neoprene cups can be problematic in cold weather. The cup for a 220 lantern is right leather cup. Look on the Coleman Collector's Forum (CCF). There are several good tutorials there on the 502. The only difficult part of disassembling an older 502 is unscrewing the burner base plate from the bunsen. The small oil filter wrench shown in some of the CCF threads is the way to go. For starters I would just check the cap gasket and pump cup. Follow the directions on the side and light it up. The 502 is one of the best single burners around. Works at both full blast and gentle simmer. You'll be well pleased with it. At the price you paid you should have been wearing a mask.
     
  4. Kayaker70

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    I am in Powell River.
     
  5. Kayaker70

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    Thanks everyone for their help.
    I have looked at the links and will search them for the information.
    Much appreciated.
     
  6. BradB

    BradB United States Subscriber

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    Personally I wouldn't automatically tear down a stove that new. Give the tank a rinse with fresh Coleman fuel. Dump it out, checking for dirt or junk. If it is clean, proceed. Fill 2/3 full. Do not tip while filling. This can cause them to flood. Don't ask me how I know. Open the pump a couple turns counter clockwise and pump about 30 pumps. Release your thumb from the center hole and see if the pump holds the pressure without closing the pump shaft. If it does, the check valve is working. They do not have a non return valve. Close the pump shaft clockwise. Walk away for a few hours and come back to see if you can spot any leaks. Lightly open the fuel cap to see if it hisses and has held the pressure. If not, get a new gasket from Old Coleman parts. Once it holds pressure with no leaks, follow the directions and light it outside in a safe place. I always have heavy gloves and a bucket of water in case of worst case conflagration. I have never needed them. I'm betting it fires right up. If not, resort to the Coleman Collectors Forum and look for "Project 502" by Murph. Brad
     
  7. itchy

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    A friend of mine recently found a similar-looking "newish" 502 at a garage sale for $5 and he asked my advice. I gave the regular short list of stuff to do (oil the cup, check for leaks, dump out old fuel, etc). He, of course, ignored it all and fired it up old fuel and all. The stove worked fine.
     
  8. OptimusPrime Canada

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    @BradB ...Isnt the check valve essentially a NRV?
     
  9. BradB

    BradB United States Subscriber

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    @OptimusPrime , although it does stop air and gas from returning up the pump shaft, it is an entirely different mechanism than the NRV's we use on most of our classics. It has a small ball bearing that mostly seals against the return, but the pump shaft screws into it when closing to provide a lockup seal. The Colemans also have a breather tube leading to the top of the tank so that the check valve and pump are not immersed in fuel. These multiple safety mechanisms are what allow Coleman appliances to safely use the more volatile fuel, compared to kerosene. Stoves such as the Optimus 111B have only a traditional NRV which has the NRV and bottom of the pump shaft immersed in gas. Only the integrity of the rubber pip stops a potentially catastrophic accident.
     
  10. OptimusPrime Canada

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    Just learned something....cheers
     
  11. BradB

    BradB United States Subscriber

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    I should have said the pump rod screws into the check valve at the bottom of the pump shaft. Sorry for the mistake. Brad
     
  12. Kayaker70

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    The tank was rinsed with white gas and was clean.
    The pump check valve did not leak.
    The tank held pressure overnight.
    It did light up on the third match. Burned blue.
    The flame size did not change from 1/4 turn to fully open.
    The flame was probably larger than what I would expect for a simmer but muchs smaller than I would expect for cooking.

    I checked out the link at Coleman Collectors as suggested. Great project write up.

    Tks
    Bob
     
  13. snwcmpr

    snwcmpr SotM Winner Subscriber

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    If I was to answer your question .... I would have said what @BradB and @itchy said.

    You can reduce the flame with the cleaning needle. Turn it all the way around quickly to clean the jet, or turn it enough to reduce the flame.

    Ken in NC
     
  14. scouterjan

    scouterjan Subscriber

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    That's a super stove model. Probably my favorite small 1 burner that Coleman made
    Jan
     
  15. Majicwrench

    Majicwrench Subscriber

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    Like Ken said, spin that tip cleaner.

    And after lighting add another bunch (20) pumps.
     
  16. snwcmpr

    snwcmpr SotM Winner Subscriber

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    Yes, to above.
     
  17. hikerduane

    hikerduane Subscriber

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    I prefer a 500, but did have my 502 camping a couple days ago.
    Duane
     
  18. Murph

    Murph United States Subscriber

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    I'll second that!

    It holds enough fuel for a decent amount of run time, easy to light, the position of the burner in the bowl makes it all but windproof, and the flame control is all you could ask for!

    It's simple as it can be to do field repair - if it ever needs it You can burn CF, VM&P naptha, Amish blend or straight kerosene, if you use the center of the burner as a preheat cup with alcohol! One of the members did a modification of the filler cap to use butane with this stove.

    That stove is how I ended up on this forum. I was working on a Stirling hot-air engine and needed a reliable device to provide heat for long periods with little or no attention short of refilling the fuel, easily repaired if needed and easy to mount and attach to a existing device. The 502 measured up on all accounts for the job.

    Murph
     
  19. sa3spd

    sa3spd United States Subscriber

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    Hi,

    Only one thing comes to mind that hasn't been covered: the comment about the third match!

    Somewhere I read this "helpful hint" for lighting Coleman lanterns on the first match, and it works for the stoves, too, especially those patterned after the 502 and 440 families. I've found it a great tip for cooler to cold weather, too. For the 502:

    After filling the tank (2/3 to 3/4 is a good idea), make sure the fuel cap's secured and pump the required number of strokes. Usually around 25 is recommended. If the tank's low, more will be necessary. Screw in the pump to lock it. Make sure the little lever with the red cap is turned to the "light/hi" position after turning it a full revolution or two to help clear the generator. Now open the fuel valve wheel 1/4 turn. Listen carefully: it will hiss initially, then start to make a different sound, a spitting or gurgling noise for lack of a better word.

    This gurgling is the point when actual liquid fuel is starting to fill the generator. Shut off the valve wheel when you first hear it. Light a match, hold it near the burner, and open the valve wheel slowly to 1/4 turn and the burner should light right away. Leave the valve wheel where it is, pump another 20 or so strokes (until you feel good resistance), and let it burn a minute. Then you can open the valve wheel all the way (watch your fingers: it's easy to bump the pan below the burner as you turn the wheel. That's one of those "only takes one lesson" learning experiences!) and adjust the flame with the little lever.

    Now cook something! Even if it's just hot water for tea or coffee. :lol:

    And when you're done, open the lever up to "hi" and add a few pump strokes, letting the stove burn at full blast for a minute, then turn the lever a time or two and shut off the valve wheel. It may take a few seconds to burn out. This helps clear the generator a bit so the next start is easy.

    Rick C
     
  20. snwcmpr

    snwcmpr SotM Winner Subscriber

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    ^^^^
    Well said.

    When shutting down , I close the valve down to 1/4 to add air to the mix and clear the generator before turning all the way closed.