I finally finished rebuilding my beer engine. I bought the engine last year. It was in rough shape when I bought it, but the price was right. The rebuild has taken a while as I was in no particular hurry to get it done.
Here's what the engine looked like when I first acquired it:
Taking apart the engine wasn't difficult. I spend most of my time refinishing wood and polishing the brass. I soaked and cleaned every part and replaced most of the seals. Putting the engine back together was a bit more difficult. Fortunately I took ph0tographs of every step of the teardown process. It's not a complicated device, but it does need to go together in a certain order.
What the engine looks like now (I still have the Thwait's decal but left it off here):
I'm no expert on beer engines. This was my first experience. I think my Homark is a 1/2 pint model, while many engines are 1/4 pint. This thing is a beast, weighing in at around 25 pounds. Most of the weight is the brass.
I had to replace a few parts. Finding parts was a challenge. The engine was usable last summer. I was still missing a non-return valve. The original valve in my engine was shot. I rigged up an in-line valve temporarily to get it working. Recently a forum member sent me a PM about a parrts supplier in the UK. I finally consider the rebuild complete.
This was a fun project. I originally bought the engine for decoration. The good news now is it's super clean and it works great. I'm going to have to get serious about making real ales!
Here are some more photos:
Brass could still use more polishing
Most difficult part (for me at least) to find was the non-return valve:
Original with diaphragm that was shot.
Replacement (which works fantastic)
Here's an old thread regarding the back flow preventer. Thanks everyone for the feedback.http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=10710.msg133446#msg133446
I found the part (thanks to Geep) from this source:http://cfbsonline.co.uk/shop/
They also have a replacement seal kit which would have been handy. Since mine works well I have no desire to take it apart again