The first gas stove was developed in 1802 by Zachäus Winzler (de), but this along with other attempts remained isolated experiments.James Sharp patented a gas stove in Northampton, England in 1826 and opened a gas stove factory in 1836. His invention was marketed by the firm Smith & Philips from 1828. An important figure in the early acceptance of this new technology, was Alexis Soyer, the renowned chef at the Reform Club in London. From 1841, he converted his kitchen to consume piped gas, arguing that gas was cheaper overall because the supply could be turned off when the stove was not in use.
A gas stove was shown at the World Fair in London in 1851, but it was only in the 1880s that the technology became a commercial success in England. By that stage a large and reliable network for gas pipeline transport had spread over much of the country, making gas relatively cheap and efficient for domestic use. Gas stoves only became widespread on the European Continent and in the United States in the early 20th century.
Early gas stoves were rather unwieldy, but soon the oven was integrated into the base and the size was reduced to fit in better with the rest of the kitchen furniture. In the 1910s, producers started to enamel their gas stoves for easier cleaning.
For a burner to work properly it must have a balanced mixture of gas and air. The gas is controlled by the size of the hole in the orifice. That usually feeds directly into the end of a burner which has adjustable vents to let in air. The action of the gas flowing into the burner in a specific direction causes a vacuum which pulls air in from the air vents. The gas and air then mix and proceed on to the burner jets where they are ignited.
If there is not enough gas then the flame will be too low. If there is not enough air then the flame will burn "rich", use much more gas than is needed and leave a sooty film on everything. It is critical to adjust the amount of gas (through the size of the orifice opening), and the amount of air (by adjusting the vent openings) to get the right mix.
If a gas line goes to more than one valve then we need to build a manifold for it. Drawing of a typical gas manifold:
Although pipe taps are measured in inches, you generally cannot match them up to a tape measure. Pipe sizes were originally based on the inside diameter of the pipe. As technology has been enhanced, the inside diameter has changed but the outside diameter has remained constant for the purpose of standard fittings. Therefore, a 1/8 inch pipe tap is actually nowhere near 1/8 inch in size. Also, pipe taps are "tapered". This means they get bigger as the tap threads goes deeper. If you go all the way through then the threads will be too big and you will not be able to seal your valves. For the 1/8 inch tap pre-drill with a size "R" (0.339") drill bit.
Shown to the right is a simple griddle burner configuration. It consists of an incoming pipe which doubles as a manifold, two burners and two pilot lights. In this configuration you must light the burner manually when the gas is turned on and there is no safety shutoff if the wind extinguishes the pilot flames. The heat level is controlled by the burner valves. The pilots remain lit as long as gas is present so the burners can be turned off when not in use.
In cooking, a gas stove is a cooker/stove which uses syngas, natural gas, propane, butane, liquefied petroleum gas or other flammable gas as a fuel source. Prior to the advent of gas, cooking stoves relied on solid fuel such as coal or wood. The first gas stoves were developed in the 1820s, and a gas stove factory was established in England in 1836. This new cooking technology had the advantage that it was easily adjustable and could be turned off when not in use. However the gas stove did not become a commercial success until the 1880s, by which time a supply of piped gas was available in large towns in Britain. The stoves became widespread on the European Continent and in the United States in the early 20th century.
Gas stoves became less unwieldy when the oven was integrated into the base and the size was reduced to fit in better with the rest of the kitchen furniture. By the 1910s, producers started to enamel their gas stoves for easier cleaning. Ignition of the gas was originally by match and this was followed by the more convenient pilot light. This had the disadvantage of a continual consumption of gas. The oven still needed to be lit by match, and accidentally turning on the gas without igniting it could lead to an explosion. To prevent these types of accidents, oven manufacturers developed and installed a safety valve called a flame failure device for gas hobs (cooktops) and ovens. Most modern gas stoves have electronic ignition, automatic timers for the oven and extractor hoods to remove fumes.
Early gas stoves produced by Windsor. From Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management, 1904.
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