Hi Wood Gassers,
I just came in from tearing down the newest Victoria. So far so good. Most of the things I wanted to achieve seem to be happening.
1.) Nothing melted. That is a good thing.
2.) From the metal appearance the tar is obviously burning in the tar flare, away from the charcoal. I was hoping the tar would ignite on contact with hot air like in a Diesel engine. That seems to be happening. The tar flare was perfectly clean. No tar had been able to condense on it and the metal was shiny oxide gray.
3.) There was no smoke or tar gas in the fuel hopper when I added fuel. That also suggests the tar is being sucked in and burned.
4.) The tar flare was clean. It didn't have any charcoal bits plugging it up.
5.) The machine had plugged, but that was my fault. I ran an experimental four bar grate instead of the usual three bar. Live and learn. I was trying to reduce slipped char but it worked too well.
6.) There were no signs of leakage or internal burning from the ash clean out. None of my stuff uses gaskets. I use metal on metal flanges throughout my units so there is nothing to lose or wear out.