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  #1  
Old 04-22-2006, 02:22 AM
condolan condolan is offline
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Is Biodiesel The Answer To Our Problems?

With all the hype of how gas prices are going to beat down the standard American consumer this summer, there seems to be a growing revolution for biodiesel. From the many articles and research I have done, Biodiesel couldn't come fast enough. If it's true that it runs around $1 a gallon, I'd be very tempted to sell my old Toyota and pick up a fixer-upper 7.3 Power-Stroke (lots of those for a good price around here). I know that biodiesel is quite popular in the midwest, but it's rising here in Montana seems lethargic, despite all the front page news about it. If anybody can point out the real facts and the direction Biodiesel will take America, I'd love to hear it. Be it good or bad.

My #1 reason that I like Biodiesel? Diesel trucks kick major a** and I'd kill to have one (well, not kill, just seriously injure).
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Old 04-22-2006, 09:51 AM
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Biodiesel is one part of the energy independence puzzle. However, even if we took all the used veggie oil from fast food restaurants and converted it to biodiesel, it would only supply 1-2% of our diesel needs. There are similar numbers for ethanol. We don't have enough land in the USA to produce the crops for all the ethanol we would need to replace gasoline with ethanol. But even a 4% reduction in foreign oil helps. We really need to find more oil for ourselves in our own lands. That means Alaska and the ANWR.

I'm going diesel too. More later when the plans are firmed up.

Try this site: http://www.biodieselamerica.org
Also, google biodiesel.

Phil
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Old 04-22-2006, 12:28 PM
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Thanks for the link. It's very interesting. I bookmarked it in my favorites.

Couldn't we grow it? Besides mostly eliminating the illegal dump of restraunt oil by taking it off their hands, it also looks as if enough of it could be grown...and more farming is always good news.

Now if only they would start selling Biodiesel in Montana. There are a lot of diesel trucks around here.

Last edited by condolan; 04-22-2006 at 12:30 PM.
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Old 04-22-2006, 01:23 PM
AZAV8 AZAV8 is offline
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On the link they have a section to find biodiesel sellers. You have to drill down to the retail outlets but they list two one in Missoula and one in West Yellowstone.

It takes a lot of soy beans and other vegetable oil to make biodiesel. Besides we use a LOT of diesel in this country. Every railroad engine, every 18-wheeler all use diesel. Millions and millions of gallons. If you want to still eat, we just don't have the aerable acreage to grow enough crops to make enough biodiesel. Like I said, if we used all of the waste vegetable oil to make biodiesel, we'd only offset about 1-2% of the annual diesel used in this country.

Do your part and buy a diesel. You can then brew your own biodiesel and use it. There is more chemistry to it than most people think. The more non-commercial diesels sold will make it more economically feasible for the biodiesel brewers to go commercial. There are already standards for biodiesel.

Open up the link and find out some more.

Phil
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Old 04-23-2006, 12:17 PM
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I personally think the whole key to biodiesel and ethanol and methanol is to ween ourselves from ALOT of foreign oil. If we can reduce our usage by 1-2% for diesel alone and can start making all gas engines E85 compliant, we could potentially reduce our foreign oil imports by (loosely guesstimating) 45%. If that could be half way acomplished, that should scare the pants off of the countries like Iran to happily comply to anyone who has a complaint about how they do things while reducing the price significantly. Who's with me, all for Bio fuels yell "YYYYEEEEEEAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!

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Old 04-23-2006, 03:44 PM
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Well, I don't know how Europe copes with their gas prices, but I don't think the American people are gonna' stand for this much longer. You can only cheat a group of people so much. I agree with both of you guys, even if Biodiesel can't completely fill a gap, there's no doubt that it's a positive step that can be taken to rid ourselves of this oil quagmire.
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Old 04-23-2006, 04:28 PM
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I don't think anyone proposes to completely switch from petro to biodiesel. I don't think anyone has proposed that it would even be possible. What IS possible and would HELP to reduce the use of oil AND increase the lubricity of diesel fuel, especially low sulpur fuel that's coming, is the use of more biodiesel blended petro. Sure, folks are producing 100% biofuel from waste veggie oil with success, but thats not for everyone.

AFA not enough land, there is a LOT of 'set aside' that farmers are being paid by the gov't NOT to plant on. Seems like a great reason to begin farming this land.
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Old 04-23-2006, 08:38 PM
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The unfortunate truth is that because real diesel is so high, bio is running just about 10 cents behind. I run it exclusively now and paid 2.69 just yesterday. No price break Im afraid. I will still run it though.
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Old 04-24-2006, 11:26 AM
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Also check out this site. www.biodiesel.org they have a huge amount of information and also what the specs are for biodiesel, what the OEM warranty information is for all diesel engine manufacturers.
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Old 04-24-2006, 01:37 PM
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While waste oil can't be used to totally replace all diesel with BD converting it to BD provides a useful way of disposing of an otherwise problematic waste product.

The real question is can we raise enough oil seed to supply all of the diesel we need answer we can sure come close especially by switching to better oil seed crops like rape seed. Additionally, once the oil is extracted the "pulp" left can be run through a fermentation process and used to produce ethanol. Thats a twofer.

Can we totally eliminate our need for foriegn oil? Maybe not but we can eliminate our need to buy oil from idiots like the guy in Venezula or the Russians.

Are there benefits other than reducing our dependency on foriegn oil? You bet how about reduction in pollution and putting some folks back to work in the ag business.

Do I care if BD costs as much as regular diesel? No, as long as my dollars stay in the USA and don't end up funding some terrorists or building an army for some Banana Republic dictator.
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Old 04-24-2006, 10:51 PM
NA7.3LIDI NA7.3LIDI is offline
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Smile

As a high school sophomore I am taking a biology course this year, and first semester dealt with cellular function along with genetics. The answer to all of our fuel problems can be found in genetic engineering. Splice in genes that code for more oil production (or create the genes synthetically) and grow the modified plants in contained areas to keep them from the rest of the wild and food population. Genes that also code for faster growth could also be used to completely offset our fuel dependance. Plus using Biodiesel the engines are lubricated better (not to mention that the extra oxygen helps combusiton) and carbon that is released into the atmosphere is brought back into plants when they use it for their own purposes. So there is a continual cycle of carbon absorbtion and releasing going on.

Here is an interesting fact some of you may not know- In 1913 Rudolf Diesel stated that plant products would become as important as the coal and petroleum products of today. Pretty insightful guy. He also originally designed the compression ignition engines to run on peanut oil.

Anyway, sorry for the long post. Hope this provides some info.
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Old 04-24-2006, 11:38 PM
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Well I am enjoying reading this thread. I have been campainging for years to convert over to vegatable based fuels.

First thing that needs to happen is for the US Govt to get the hell out of the farming industry's way.

Don't underestimate the ability of the American farm industry. If the demand is there and the govt doesn't get in the way, they will grow whatever there is a market for. In Iowa they are producing methanol in a big way and it's a grassroots effort. Also it is a myth that there is not enough land to grow plants for fuel. In Canada they make 'Canola' oil which is made from rape seed oil. Massive fields of yellow flowers. In bulk it costs slightly less than diesel and burns just fine. In Brazil their cars all run on E85. It took them about 20 years to convert over, they are making it from sugar cane (which will grow very well along our gulf coast and in Florida,) and they are now energy independant. But it takes the support of the govt and the will of the people.
That's all that keeps us from going there.

I too, would enjoy cutting OPEC off at the ankles. It would impoverish our enemies and enrich our farming industry and create masses of new jobs. Not to mention it would help with our balance of trade and the federal deficit too.
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Old 04-25-2006, 02:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NA7.3LIDI
As a high school sophomore I am taking a biology course this year, and first semester dealt with cellular function along with genetics. The answer to all of our fuel problems can be found in genetic engineering. Splice in genes that code for more oil production (or create the genes synthetically) and grow the modified plants in contained areas to keep them from the rest of the wild and food population. Genes that also code for faster growth could also be used to completely offset our fuel dependance. Plus using Biodiesel the engines are lubricated better (not to mention that the extra oxygen helps combusiton) and carbon that is released into the atmosphere is brought back into plants when they use it for their own purposes. So there is a continual cycle of carbon absorbtion and releasing going on.

Here is an interesting fact some of you may not know- In 1913 Rudolf Diesel stated that plant products would become as important as the coal and petroleum products of today. Pretty insightful guy. He also originally designed the compression ignition engines to run on peanut oil.

Anyway, sorry for the long post. Hope this provides some info.
Thanks for posting this. It makes good sense and gives hope to us all for a good future. You read so much these days how there is no way to beat the dilema we are faced with. Good to see some optimism. I hope you will find the incentive to follow through with this, and other theories, into your college years. Bail out your country and become wealthy at the same time.
Good for you!
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Old 04-25-2006, 03:01 PM
NA7.3LIDI NA7.3LIDI is offline
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Well, I can't turn the world around by myself, it will take the governments and the will of people to pull this off, around the globe. Not particularly easy, but possible.
I hope to be able to push not only biofuels, but my own engine ideas. If I can get both to run together, you all will have 6.0L engines cranking out 600+ HP (normally aspirated) with the reliability of a 7.3L.
Back to biodiesel, if we use the cooking oil, genetics and better engine technology I think we could be entirely self sufficant.
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Old 04-25-2006, 03:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bdox

In Iowa they are producing methanol in a big way and it's a grassroots effort.
.
MMMmmm. Don't think so. Methanol is produced by the direct combination of hydrogen and carbon monoxide gases, heated under pressure in the presence of a catalyst. Also called wood alcohol. And it's poisonous. No help to corn farmers there.

In Iowa, I'd expect they are producing ethanol from corn.
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Old 04-25-2006, 03:04 PM
 
 
 
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