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  #1  
Old 03-31-2004, 12:23 PM
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Biodiesel/Diesel Technology

Since we kind of moved off topic in another thread I'm starting this new one to discuss biodiesel and diesel technology. Have you guys checked out these sites?

www.biodiesel.org

www.dieselforum.org
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Old 03-31-2004, 01:13 PM
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I have visited Biodiesel.org before in attempt to locate nearest vendor. I was wanting to buy 3 or 4 gallons, examine it and see what all the hubbub was about, and see if a small amount, less than the B-20 mix really helps the engine. I would like to look into it, as I am afraid the future for America might depend on a home grown, renewable synthesised fuel. The OPEC countries are definitely trying their best to bring America down by cutting off our fuel supplies.
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Old 03-31-2004, 01:25 PM
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Eeh John,
I would love to start a new thread on bio diesel, but I have no idea where and under what heading. The 7.3L section somehow does not seem to be the right place for it. Do you have any suggestions? The moderators of the forum are having a tough enough time looking after everything and I would hate to add to their workload. Great site as it is, we are still just guests, using the service they provide.

I also would like to express my frustration (in some discussion thread) that we cannot have the great modern diesels built by Ford and GM in Europe. Go to the Ford or Opel websites in Germany and drool (in German). I have driven these cars and they are truly sweet engines. So, keeping the global economy in mind, why can we not have them over here? One answer seems to be BIG OIL having no interest in seeing their sales of fuel drop... are there any other answers?

As to the bio diesel: The many stations that I have seen in Europe seem to mainly pump "Rapsoel", which I translate (rightly or wrongly) as Canola. The veggie diesel is quite a bit cheaper than the ordinary diesel, due to lower fuel taxes, even though the production costs are actually higher. However, the car rental agency was very specific about me not using bio diesel in my rented Benz!

I was under the impression that bio diesel in Europe is practically pure veggie base and has very little refined diesel (if any) added. Hence the lower price due to lower taxation. To my recollection there is no type of 80:20 mix (with the 80 meaning the content of refined diesel) over there. I shall go back over there in a few weeks (probably May) and make some inquiries.

Keep in mind, that my visits to Europe are for purposes other than researching diesel engines. However, my love affair with diesels started many years ago, when I worked my way through university in Zuerich, Switzerland, by driving diesel cabs at night. My actual experience with diesels is mainly in a marine environment, the hardest use any engine can be subjected to. My PSD diesel experience is nil, though I have owned my 2002 F-350 PSD for 2 years, since new.

I somewhat disagree with your statements (see the "What makes a Diesel Rattle???" thread) differentiating veggie diesel from bio diesel, though I can well understand your argument in light of the 80:20 statement you made. Undoubtedly, pure veggie diesel needs additives to adjust it's viscosity so the fuel flows easily. And here I am guessing: to avoid having normal consumers muck around with fuel additives (and getting it wrong), the engineers that I talked to recommended a two (2) tank system. Obviously pure veggie oil is much thicker than the bio diesel that is available in Europe.

Originally I was going to send this to you as a private e-mail, but since you opened a new thread, I am going to post it here.
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Old 03-31-2004, 01:44 PM
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Read carefully the information on biodiesel.org. Biodiesel is made from the same oils, but is refined through several processes. You don't need the 2 tank system with biodiesel but with straight oil you do. I think they give a great description of the differences.

BTW, when I compare biodiesel and veggie oil I'm comparing B100, not a blend.
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Old 03-31-2004, 07:34 PM
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If ya'll are interested, I've been doing some testing and research on the characteristics of soy-biodiesel vs. regular diesel. I'm a senior at Iowa State University and there is a group of us that are testing diesels for our senior design project. We have completed our tests and will be working on compiling all the information into graphs and have been working on writing a technical report about the whole procedure. As there are no significant improvements in Hp, torque and fuel efficiency between premium #2 diesel, 2%, 5% and 15% blends, the B2 (2% soy diesel) has shown the most improvements over the other fuels.
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Old 03-31-2004, 07:50 PM
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Please post as much information as you think will be useful. I'd love to see some charts.
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Old 03-31-2004, 08:00 PM
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farmb0y,

that is interesting! So B2 actually did give some performance improvement. Did you actually get any at improvement at all in fuel consumption with the bio diesel? Will the results of your research be available on the internet? If so, could you please post the url? Thanks

On edit: I am amazed about any improvement at all with the B2. To what do you attribute that? More BTU's in B2 vs regular #2? I mean 2% is such a small amount.
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Old 03-31-2004, 08:12 PM
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Yes could you post the info? As I am looking to try and get a Ford Diesel this fall for my work truck. I have never owned one but have alot of 'work' miles from a previous job. The way gas prices vs diesel are(about .06-.07 lower than gas here) told the wife it's time to burn oil.
I'm looking on the diesel forums to get an idea of what to expect from a used unit.
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Old 03-31-2004, 10:01 PM
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I think the reason for the better performance with B2 is because soy-biodiesel has fewer BTU's in it than regular #2 in it and the more soy diesel added you will slightly lower the BTU's, compared to regular #2. But this difference is so slight that I wouldn't discourage the use of greater blends. There are so many other benefits of soy diesel that you gain from it, no matter what you use it will be better than regular #2. I'm just remembering this from when we ran the tests, we haven't compiled the results into graphs or data sheets, but I think the soy blended fuels were at least equal if not better in the performance characteristics than #2.
These results were ran on a John Deere PowerTech 4.5L engine (4 cylinder inline) that was hooked to a dynamometer and data was taken from that. Hopefully it is applicable to our Powestrokes.
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Old 03-31-2004, 10:17 PM
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farmb0y,
now you got me stumped. I always believed that more BTU's = more energy. You also mention that there are other benefits to soy diesel and that you felt it was better than pure #2. If you have the time, could you please elaborate on that? I would love to learn, thanks.
I do hope that your research is going to be available on the net, once it is all compiled. Looking forward to reading it. Thanks for your efforts.
Anything that reduces the revenue of OPEC is just fine by me!
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Old 03-31-2004, 11:11 PM
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canuck999-
You are right, more BTU's=more energy. I might have mispoke in my last post. B2, as I remember, had the better performance characteristics. I think #2 was right up with it. Why I think B2 performed better is that soy-diesel has better lubricity than #2, so the fuel will flow through the system easier, and a little more fuel can get into the cylinder, and with only a 2% blend it still has almost equal BTU's as #2. There are a lot of reasons for different performance results and that is a conclusion that we have come up with and have discussed with our professor.
Some of the benefits of soy diesel:
-better lubricity
-cleaner burning
-it can act as a detergent and clean the fuel system (drawback you may have to change your fuel filter)
-renewable resource, we grow the most of it here in Iowa

We are working on the results and once we get some conclusions I'll be sure to post them for you guys.
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Old 03-31-2004, 11:24 PM
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Not only is it a renewable resource, but I read somewhere that there is enough oil waste products to produce enough biodiesel for all the diesel engines currently operated in the country. That means we don't have to grow crops for biodiesel, just recycle.
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Old 04-01-2004, 09:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsdiesel
Not only is it a renewable resource, but I read somewhere that there is enough oil waste products to produce enough biodiesel for all the diesel engines currently operated in the country. That means we don't have to grow crops for biodiesel, just recycle.

johnsdiesel brought another point to mind. There is a difference between biodiesel and soy-diesel when people talk about them. Bio-diesel is an esterfied vegetable or animal oil. To be classified as esterfied the crude vegetable oil must be mixed with an alcohol and a catalyst that will neutralize the fatty acids and sugars. These fatty acids and sugars would be catastrophic to an internal combustion engine. The common definition of a soy-diesel is just a filtered and clarified crude vegetable oil. This form of soy-diesel is not recommended and will cause damage to an engine.
Our tests were run with a soybean oil biodiesel.
I agree with being able to recycle waste products, but I don't think it is a matter of having to grow the crops to produce soydiesel. The crops are going to be grown, as farmers we are trying to find a market for our product. Imagine at your job, that you never received a raise in the past 10-20 years, but everything else has inflated prices: bills, vehicles, about anything you can think of. As a farmer, that is the way it has been, prices for crops have not increased much at all over the past 10-20 years, we are still getting paid the same price per bushel of grain as we did back then. And for a farmer to stay in business, he'll just have to produce more crops to at least break even in finances. It's a vicious cycle and we are just trying to find more outlets for our crops to be used, and soy-biodiesel, as we see it, is a great opportunity.
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Old 04-02-2004, 10:07 AM
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I'll be helping your market this year at least a tiny bit. We still do not have any regular consumer BD pumps in OK. We have to make ourself or have some trucked in. I am ordering some BD in 55 gallon drums shortly. I don't know when I can get around to making some this summer. That's something I can't have the kids help with! Anyone reading this tried SVO or WVO? Not brave enough to try myself but just curious if anyone else besides alt energy people are doing it too in PSDs.

You know what I guess I might not be helping market in short term. Don't know if true, but I read the gov is giving away tons of soy beans to mass BD companies at least right now? I'm a cattle person so I don't know about that. Sounded odd that the gov would short change soy farmers, at least initially, now when BD is becoming more well known in U.S.

There is a lot of information, college studies, U.S. gov statistics, private instututes, etc out there already. Decent made BD should have higher cetane levels, but less BTU's. I have got that one mixed up in a post last year I think. Your results are showing either a no diff or better with BD in regards to a dyno? I'm interested too in seeing the numbers. That's good to hear. It will raise the interest in BD even higher among the diesel crowd.

The enviro benefits of BD versus diesel and especially gas is worth going for it alone. I am burning because of enviro & nationalist views myself. It is strange that the diesel engine is just now, in mass #'s or countires, coming basically back full circle. It was made for vegy oil. Supposedly, Mr. Diesel ran his new type of engine on peanut oil. I am talking only in mass knowledge terms, I know that BD, SVO, & WVO have been in use for diesels at least since the 70's.

Thanks for starting a seperate thread on the subject Johnsdiesel. You don't know how great it is to see alt energy ideas and products creeping into mainstream. Sometimes it gets discouraging to fight for something years and years to what seems to no use. It's hard to get people to see beyond here and now in our culture. Then along comes big companies buying wind gens and BD threads in a forum designed for vehicles! Please keep me posted on burning B100. I am chicken to since I have a 1995.

Take care and go for it everyone,
OK
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Old 04-02-2004, 02:23 PM
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While it may not increase performance greatly, it does not decrease it at all
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Old 04-02-2004, 02:23 PM
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