Post by scrapheapchallenge on Nov 3, 2008 11:49:31 GMT
don't know if anyone here will perhaps know the name of the gadgets I am going to describe, or if they are available in the UK, but...
When I lived in Colorado (high, cold, snowy) my '91 dodge ram had a plug hidden in the radiator grille, which you could plug into a regular extension cord overnight, which made it easier to start the vehicle in the morning - of this device I do not know much else, I was instructed by my boss to plug it in at night when it was cold, in the morning my car started easily and was immediately warm. If I didn't plug it in - it wasn't.
Device 2 I understood much more easily - we had a mid size ford tractor, and about 15 minutes to half an hour before needing to use it in the winter I was instructed to take a small block (about 2" high, 2" wide, 3" long) with a short lead and plug on it. I carefully offered it up to a large part of the engine block whereupon it gripped like a limpet (magnetic see ) the plug it into the extension cord. The block got VERY VERY HOT (warning lol) but it heated up the engine block and meant that the tractor started first time easily even when the temperature was way, way below freezing. Before starting the engine, pull on the cord to pull the block off the engine, and then handle very carefully - as it got SO hot it couldn't really be put on the wooden floorboards of the barn safely, so generally I'd dip it in a snowdrift (cue lots of instant steam LOL) to cool it a little before putting it somewhere safe to completely cool.
Such is the nature of the magnetic heating block that I'm sure that anyone with some electronics knowledge could knock one together using some aluminium casing, some magnets and old kettle components? Either that or find the name of the device and see if there are any to be had on fleabay, and/or convert a USA plug to UK 3 pin?
Just some ideas. Sorry for my lack of knowledge but electrical gubbins are my weakest point!
I have determined that my sole purpose in life is to serve as a bad example...