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Posted by Boiler Guy on February 26, 2004 at 05:38:49:
In Reply to: Re: Fire tube Boiler Applications posted by Dan on February 25, 2004 at 22:22:01:
: There is nothing wrong with a firetube over 800 HP, I should know. I just commisssioned a 2200HP firetube 6 months ago without any problems. Firetube generally are cheaper than a watertube of the equivelant capacity and as long as the pressure requirement in about 200 Psig, then there is nothing wrong with a big firetube.
Dan, that's like saying: "my brand new 1984 Plymouth Reliant drove great its first few months too. It was cheaper than a GM or Ford as well. It seemed to be a good car at the time." Does that still make it a good choice ? No.
Firetubes that large are stretching it too far. At best the savings over a watertube are going to be no more than 10%. It is only my opinion that firetubes in the size you are talking - in the long run - are not a good idea as they pose serious safety issues should the pressure vessel be violated. They take up 4 times as much real estate as a watertube, do not offer the same ability to handle load swings, and have poorer steam quality.
True, a firetube is going to be cheaper than a watertube, but if a customer is unable to evaluate competitive offerings beyond simply price then the way I see it is good for them if they have a problem. I'm tired of the "price only" bean counter having the final call over good engineering practice and I have no sympathy if and when these short-sighted customers inevitably run into problems.
Maybe you'll change my mind after I see 5 or 10 years of continuous service on one of these beast. Until then 6 months of service doesn't sell me.
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