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Q&A's > Engines - Slide Valve


Q. What is the purpose of steam cocks on slide valve engines?

A. When starting any steam engine from cold the initial flow of steam will condense back to water. In slide valve engines, these valves are intended to allow you to bleed the condensate off in the early stages of start-up and then turned off when the engine is warm enough to stop condensing the steam. This is particularly important when running in very cold conditions. In temperate/warm conditions the small amount of condensate generated is pushed back into the steam chest, gets re-heated by the new steam coming in, and in a brief time, regular operation commences and continues while the engine remains “hot”. Thus, many users have been able to run their MSM systems without operating the steam cocks.

Q. Engine stalls or emits much steam and water without much movement during start-up>?

A. Operate the steam cocks as advised above.

Q. Engine stalls, or water emitted without much movement during start-up.

A.  Boiler overfilled.