bio fuels.

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by steevie, May 2, 2012.

  1. steevie

    steevie Funster

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    In my introduction I mentioned that I was involved with bio fuels, and interest was shown as to the types of fuels and vehicles. I know there are a lot of myths and confusion on the subject of biofuels, and surprisingly, mechanics are the source of much of it for some reason beyond me, altho on the forum I am linked with, there are a good few mechanics who know whats what, and one of the admin is a former diesel specialist, with masses of knowledge on injector pumps. Basically, just about all diesel engines will run fine on proper well made biodiesel. The problems start when you just want to use veg oil, new or recovered. Some cars will run fine with no conversion on just straight veg oil, but they need to be the right engines, and for this, the lucas pump is a definite no no. The delicate structure of the fuel inlet side causes the rotor that drags in the fuel to snap off, and this has happened often with even low percentages and blends, but they are usually OK on proper biodiesel. Bosch pumps will run on either, but for direct injection engines, common rail engines, and PD type systems, a twin tank set up is required to start up on normal diesel. The VW tdi pre PD system is the exception to this due to its differing combustion set up.
    As the law stands at the moment in the UK, you can use 2500 lts of biofuel per year without duty, be it biodiesel which you make yourself, or new or used veg oil. Records of amounts should be kept for inspection, tho to date I don't think anyone has been asked to produce them. Biodiesel is not easy to make, and needs a proper processor, and various chemicals, but is still made by a good few thousand people.
    In April this year, the government knocked off the 20p concesion that has been on biodiesel for commercial manufacturers for the last few years, and replaced it with a very complex green credit plan, which many small producers feel they cant comply with, which is resulting in a good few of them thinking of closing, which is a shame, as the price was around 20p cheaper than normal diesel, and so it leaves them having to charge the same, which will lose all customers except those using it for its environmental gains. The enviro gains are many, with Co2 being one of the greatest, as the only Co2 given from it is down to about 20% of diesel fuel, and the plants took this in when growing, leaving biofuels Co2 neutral. There is also no sulphur dioxide, 60% less soot, 50% less carbon monoxide, 10% less nitrous oxide, and up to 90% savings on polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons[PAHs]. I am not a tree huggin greeny, but for every ton of fossil diesel burnt, there are three tons of Co2 created. There is now 5% biodiesel in all diesel we buy, but countries like France have been putting that in for many years since low sulphur diesel additives were not doing well at compensating for the the loss of lubrication, and biodiesel is many times more lubrication than fossil diesel. Someone mentioned black diesel, but that is a broad term for various fuels, but usually ends up using either old engine oil, which you wouldnt really want in your injection system, or kero etc, but all these are illegal in the UK unless you pay the full road duty of 61p per litre. Sorry for going on a bit.
     
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  2. jhorsf

    jhorsf Read Only Funster

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    why have you not put a link to your website on your post?
     
  3. lugnutt

    lugnutt Funster Life Member

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    hi steevie a very interesting post.i have a bongo 2.4 will it run on veg oil?
    dave
     
  4. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Hi steevie and welcome :thumb:I think the trouble with Bio is the simple fact that we read so many differing info IE such and such says it is OK to use it then you read you cannot -your info on pumps sounds good :thumb:My self I gave a good look at making it but then I read different so never got around to it-Same with straight veg oil,cost wise it did not stack up so never got around to doing that either.If we had a bio bloke nearby selling it then I would have no objection to using it (unfortunately we don't)Then just to muddy the waters more we have to find out what mix to use,again 50/50 diesil/veg oil --I need someone to give deffo answers which would suit my vehicle :Doh::BigGrin:I did try sticking a gallon of petrol into a tank of D just to clean everything (I think it was VW Alan)Now that worked a treat :thumb: it ran normal for about half a mile then started to pour a bit of black smoke for a couple of miles :Eeek: but then all cleared up and the van has been fine since :BigGrin:Most people don't want to risk blowing there engine and as such stick to what they know :Doh:
    terry
     
  5. Reallyretired

    Reallyretired Funster

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    Very interesting post. A chap at work used to make his own biodiesel, though it seemed to me quite a bit of work. Even a few years ago he was having trouble getting the used oil that he needed though as so many were doing it.
     
  6. steevie

    steevie Funster

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    Hi, I dont have a website, as I am retired now due to being disabled. All my posts on various forums are to help people with any knowledge I have. cheers.
     
  7. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    :
    :Rofl1: our chippie did not help :Doh: apparently they have posh fryers now that use veg oil and filter it so only ever need to clean filter and never change oil simply top it up :cry::BigGrin:
    terry
     
  8. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    Hi Steve, many thanks for the post. Have been an advocate of the use of bio for several years but its still a minefield. Its one of the main reasons I run older vehicles which are more excepting to alternative fuels. The camper am running at the moment has the Citroen 2.5 turbo diesel fitted from the Citroen CX. Unfortunately it has the Lucas pump so am wary of running 100% bio. I run it 50/50 with fossil. When I say bio I mean bio, not straight veg. I did own a VW camper with the non turbo 6 cylinder diesel and fitted an inline fuel heater for running bio. Had no problems with this even in sub freezing conditions. I would like to run the Peugeot camper on 100% but am wary of the Lucas pump. My VW golf has run 100% bio for a few years now with no detriment whatsoever.
    What if any modifications would you advise for me to run the Peugeot on bio. Would the Lucas pump stand 100% if I fitted an inline heater. It does smoke a bit on startup now but clears after a minute or so. Regarding the black diesel, I will leave that for another post to save any confusion. I know most engines that are suitable for running bio, but there are so many conflicting stories on the net that a comprehensive list would be a good idea. Have had great advice from Diesel Bob and Journey to Forever.
     
  9. steevie

    steevie Funster

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    It is a fair bit of work involved, and really should be counted as hobby as well, but the obvious savings are great. It also takes up a bit of room like as in a decent sized shed. Oil availability is different up and down the country, and some now have to pay for it, tho many still get it for free.
     
  10. johnp10

    johnp10 Funster

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    The only benefit of biodeisel is price.
    The concept of it being a cleaner fuel because it aint a fossil fuel appears to be a myth.
    Apparently, the overall carbon footprint involved in the manufacturing and use processes combined is far greater than processing and using conventional fuels, according to:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/en...s-cause-four-times-more-carbon-emissions.html

    Is this the same as the business of LPG being described as a "sustainable" fuel when it is made, as it's name suggests, from non sustainable fossil oil?
    There's no doubt LPG emissions are non toxic and no smoke particulates are emitted, but other emissions (hydrocarbons) are increased.

    There are obviously pros and cons for each type of fuel.

    Interesting issue for research / debate, methinks?
    I mean a properly researched debate, not just the usual "I have it, so it's best", nor the price per litre.

    There are some good researchers on this site, we can educate each other here.
    Steevie obviously has much to offer.
     
  11. steevie

    steevie Funster

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    Hi, I dont seem to have anything on a 2.4.bongo. Are you sure its not the 2499cc engine same as in the ford ranger etc. Both the 2ltr and 2.5 ltr engines are down as a single tank set up by the kit manufacturers, so that means they will run on veg OK, as do most mazda engines up till about the 2005 mark, which I presume will be common rail. If you used waste vegoil, a 5 to 10% addition of petrol in winter will thin it OK to combat cold temperatures. Some add it all year round, or use misfuel collected from garages, which is usually a mix of diesel and petrol, and is lawfull as duty has been paid on it by the sorry customer who chose the wrong pump.
     
  12. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    Over the years that I have used bio diesel I have come into contact with many others from all walks of life from hippies to taxi drivers that run bio. Have NEVER met one that has said that he uses it to save the planet, only to save his pocket. I also have no delusions of saving the planet with the use of bio fuel and can say in all honesty that I see nothing wrong with running a vehicle in 2012 at 1975 prices.:RollEyes:
     
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  13. johnp10

    johnp10 Funster

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    No one with a brain cell can do. ":RollEyes:"
    I already said that.

    What I'm suggesting is to get away from price and "I got it so it's good", and research / discuss / inform of the real benefits or otherwise to the environment.
    Do these fuels have a long term environmental benefit? Facts not conjecture.
    Do they harm engines in the long term? Facts not conjecture.
     
  14. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Hi John that is the problem -the big company's that have done the research will not share :BigGrin: as such it is left for us to decide :Wink:They did it with lpg on engines lots of makers produced lpg engines only to find out they burnt out the valves :BigGrin: soon stopped making the duel fuel cars- can you still buy them ?I ran a v8 disco and it was brill but I knew from day one that the head problem may have reared it's head :BigGrin:My mate (a mechanic)made a small fortune changing lpg cars (taxis) to diesel :Smile:
    terry
     
  15. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    Regarding long term damage to engines, there is mountains of studies in the US from the forestry dept etc regarding no detrimental damage to engines over many thousands of miles. My own experience is that I have travelled many many thousands of miles on bio with no problems other than the occasional change of a fuel filter. I ran a single cylinder Lister on a saw bench on home made bio for 20 years and when I stripped it down to repair an unrelated problem was amazed that it didn't even need a decoke.
    My VW golf is now 18 years old and has just had its 100000 mile birthday and has never had fossil fuel in it since new. These are facts not from a friend of a friend whose uncle told him who heard it from someone who was gassed in France.
    Anyone that knows me knows I only ever ran bio and when the time has come to change vehicles the first thing on the list is "Will it run bio". Not is it English,German or American. Have ran them all at some point but only if I can run them at 1975 prices.
    The best engine to run on bio is the old B series Cummins followed by the old 5 pot Mercedes. There is more than enough info on the net now for anyone contemplating the use of bio, Diesel Bob and Journey to Forever being good sites.
    I also think its time the government reduced road tax on bio powered vehicles and lets have them LEZ free also. Which would you prefer to breath in, fumes from cooking oil or recycled pig p**s. I rest my case.:RollEyes:
     
  16. Munchie

    Munchie Funster Life Member

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    What worries me a bit is not the folks who make their own from old chip oil etc. It is the big companies who are causing starvation in some countries because land that was used for food crops is now being used for crops to make biodeisel. :Angry:
     
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  17. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    I would be more worried about America bombing a country that had oil just to keep the wheels going round.:Doh:
     
  18. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    hi, well i have tried a mix of new veg oil in with the diesel .both on the bongo and the mitzy. i found the bongo i had to keep cleaning the filter and same on the mitzy . but the mitzy was change filters . worked out too expensive . the bongo still smells ocasionaly of chips . but i gave in with it, .
    they both ran ok . couldnt tell the difference . just dirtied their filters far too often.,
     
  19. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    Hi Al, Stop using new veg oil and start using bio. After the first 1000 miles you must change the filter, but that's only because bio cleans all the crud out of your fuel tank and fuel lines. I would never advocate the use of new veg oil even in a VW or Merc, and they all say you can. Its too thick in our climate and needs to be thinned down a bit.
     
  20. steevie

    steevie Funster

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    We have been at the mercy of the oil barons for decades and will be for sometime yet, but its good to know there are alternatives. Every major conflict we have had for many years has been down to oil. But now even the British army have multi fuel vehicles and water heating equipment. But I think long term it will be down to some form of hydrogen or electrical vehicles rather than biofuel. On the question of engines lasting longer, there are many studies about engines in trucks and buses not lasting half the life they used to since diesel was cleaned up of sulphur and such, and they found that even 5% biodiesel was more than ample to replace the lubrication problem. A MAN truck in Germany got a world record for doing 1.000.000 kilometres on biodiesel from new, with only routine servicing. Its also a fact that Rudolph Diesel invented his engine to run on peanut oil. many Universities are connected with research on bio fuels, and Huddersfield university makes its own for some of their vehicles. Mcdonalds have theirs made from their own waste oil supply. Many local councils use it as do some nation parks. The major drawback is with winter temperatures as biodiesel, especially from waste oil, has a higher gel point than diesel, and its recomended to use it 50/50 when it drops to well below zero, tho some producers put in cold additives for a few pance more.
     
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