I have promised these pics of my shop heater. But before we get to them let me give you some background on it first.
Like everyone else here I like to experiment and build things. I see something that someone else did and I look for ways I can use it for something else. Hence here comes the heater.
In our shop it is not heated nor is it insulated and during the winters here in southern illinois we get some nights where the temp falls below 20 degrees F. I mostly work on my tractors at night and on weekends and I have gotten to the point I do not like to work on them in below freezing weather. To supply some heat I had a Master Brand torpedo heater, I rebuilt this heater so it worked properly and it was very costly. This heater also liked to drink Kerosene and diesel like it was water which made it expensive to operate. This cost lead me to look for an alternative to kerosene and diesel on which to run it.
I had been seeing many adds for used motor oil heaters and I when I looked around I had used motor oil in 5 gallon buckets all over. I decided this was going to be my new fuel, now its time to play with it.
I read every article I could find on the internet where someone was using waste motor oil heaters. What I found was my torpedo heater which uses a syphon system to get the fuel to the nozel should work with out a lot of work. I started to experiment with oil and kerosene mixtures to get to a place where I got a good burn with the least amount of cost and reliabiity.
What I found was I could mix the used oil with kerosene at up to 75% oil at temperatures above 34 degrees. Anything below 34 degrees the best i could get was about a 50/50 mix. The important thing here is even at 50/50 which is far less than my goal of 100% oil I am saving 50% on my heating expense and I have no setup cost. Basically mix and plug in the heater and get warm. I should also mention that I had to cover the air intake with a blanket to get a good burn, without the blanket the air would blow out the flame until the heater was good and warm.
I wanted to have a more reliable heater so I bought a becket oil burner from a home heater off ebay. This is a burner which injects fuel oil into a home heater and is used to heat your home. With this burner sitting on my workbench and I hooked it up to fuel and out shot the flame about 4 feet long. I put a 5" chrome pipe over the burner and within 5 minutes this pipe was cherry red the entire length. I wanted a portable heater in the shop so as i moved I could move the heater also. I happened upon an old torpedo heater that came from a coal mine. The heater had not been used in over 15 years and the igniter was bad, the thing about this heater was it had a 12" heat exhanger where the little heaters had 5" exchangers.
I removed the fuel nozel and the air fins, and I inserted my becket burner in place of them. This heater burns pretty good with a 50 50 mix of kerosene and oil without any modifications. Over the summer I will make some modifications that will hopefully allow me to use 100% used oil.
Here are the pics of the heater, I hope you like.