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Lenticular water level indicator

Use refractive index magic to produce a readable water level indicator
  (+5)
(+5)
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Water level indicators on kettles don't ever seem to be especially clear. Even if they use a floating ball, that gets jammed up with limescale so it just stays in one place all the time.

I propose some kind of clever arrangement of plastics and water that exploits similarities or differences in refractive index; such as a lenticular lens that fails when immersed, showing either black or white (depending on viewing angle) when not immersed in water, but which reverts to black and white stripes (appearing grey at a distance) under water.

Or possibly a prism that only works as a lens when filled with water.

That's possible, right?

b153b, Jun 25 2017

Example gauges http://www.model-en...sp?th=99984#1706761
stripe patterns behind a tube [b153b, Jun 25 2017]

EP0330066 https://worldwide.e...30066A3&KC=A3&FT=D#
...the water level display is constructed as an optical lens. [xaviergisz, Jun 25 2017]

Sony b153b https://www.reevoo.com/p/sony-nwz-b153b
off topic... [pashute, Jun 27 2017]

[link]






       It's both possible and reasonable. [+]
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 25 2017
  

       My super-duper kettle has a half inch wide transparent plastic window running up its side, through which the water level is always clearly visible. Simple is best. (in this case)
xenzag, Jun 25 2017
  

       And it's been done, long ago. Steam railway locomotives use a background of diagonal black and white stripes to make the water level in the gauge glass more visible to the fireman.   

       This is important as a low water level in the firebox of a steam engine is a very, very bad thing, and can be tremendously loud and expensive.
8th of 7, Jun 25 2017
  

       My kettle had a half inch wide window, but it's only really useful to see where the limescale stops.   

       I like the vertical stripe, but both that and the diagonals, I think, need more contrast to be a really effective solution that shows through a haze of limescale.   

       I guess it just has to be a smaller pattern. I did also wonder if it would be possible to do something relying on crossing the threshold where the interface becomes a mirror... but that seemed a little too complex.
b153b, Jun 25 2017
  

       Any water at all in the firebox of a steam engine is a bad thing, since it will tend to extinguish the fire.
pocmloc, Jun 25 2017
  

       // Any water at all in the firebox of a steam engine is a bad thing, since it will tend to extinguish the fire. //   

       I think it's fine so long as the level of the _bottom_ of the water is high enough to keep it away from the fuel.
b153b, Jun 25 2017
  

       The firebox of a locomotive is a double-walled chamber - copper on the inside, steel on the outside, reinforced by stay-rods and girders.   

       This chamber is filled with water, covering the "crown" or top of the inner box. Should the crown become uncovered, the intense heat of the fire will soften the crown sheet, which will fail catastrophically.   

       At that point, several tonnes of water at up to 15 Bar and well above boiling point leaves the boiler at great speed, which is a Bad Thing.
8th of 7, Jun 25 2017
  

       Well I'm not sure if this is a topological or a semantic dispute. But I still maintain that the fire, not the water, goes inside the firebox.
pocmloc, Jun 25 2017
  

       In fact, both are correct. The fire in inside the inner firebox. The water is outside the inner firebox, but inside the outer firebox.
8th of 7, Jun 25 2017
  

       15 bar is enough to make an espresso.
b153b, Jun 25 2017
  

       Does eSpares (or similar) sell any spares for this kettle, like a spare seal? - that would imply that these are replaceable. Also, how does it know when you've turned your back on it?
hippo, Jun 26 2017
  

       By the sound of it, it may be time for a major infrastructure investment, [Ian].
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 26 2017
  

       // how does it know when you've turned your back on it? //   

       That's what you get when you buy a real quality kettle, of course.   

       Since they've squandered fifteen billion quid on crossrail, nothing more than another dingy pit to stuff londoners into (which would be OK, but there's very little to stop them escaping again), so a few thousand to buy [IT] a new kettle is peanuts.
8th of 7, Jun 26 2017
  

       A lot of kettles on sale today are crap. I looked for one recently but couldn't find one I preferred to our 20-year-old Russell Hobbs kettle.
hippo, Jun 26 2017
  

       // suck the soul out of the centre of London //   

       How can you take something that was never there ... ?   

       Maybe it should be called the "Dementor Line" ...   

       // There's nothing of interest in Zone 1 at all now. //   

       ... or ever was. Well, the IWM (but that's south of the river) and maybe the British Museum ...   

       // the trains will use overhead cables. //   

       What, like a cable car ? No rails ? Cool !
8th of 7, Jun 26 2017
  

       The chevron backing is ingenious. Never saw it before. Thanks @b153b
pashute, Jun 27 2017
  
      
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