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  #1  
Old 02-22-2009, 10:14 AM
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chevenstein chevenstein is offline
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Remove ethanol from pump gas?

Is there a relatively simple way to remove ethanol from pump gas? I've read that fractional distillation is the way to do it but that assumes a known boiling point for the gasoline component, but this will vary if there are other additives in the fuel. I've also heard that the thing to do it add some water, thoroughly mix the fuels, then let the water settle out with the ethanol. I'm planning an experiment of the latter but I'm skeptical.

Alternatively, is there a particular brand or grade of fuel that is ethanol free (maybe high-test from a specific vendor)?

Thanks!
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Old 02-22-2009, 06:47 PM
85e150six4mtod 85e150six4mtod is offline
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Removing what, the 10% ethanol? What for? Risk your life heating up gasoline for what? Step back and think about this.
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Old 02-22-2009, 07:57 PM
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Removing what, the 10% ethanol? What for? Risk your life heating up gasoline for what? Step back and think about this.
Yes, the 10%, my equipment is not designed for it. Don't lecture me.
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Old 02-22-2009, 08:23 PM
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Please have a video camera rolling if you go ahead with it.
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Old 02-22-2009, 08:33 PM
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Please have a video camera rolling if you go ahead with it.
I've posed my question to learn how to accomplish this without having to heat or separate the fuel with water. That said, if I were to heat it I'd do it with hot or superheated water in a closed heat exchanger - no ignition source (sorry guys ).
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Old 02-22-2009, 11:17 PM
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Here's a thought: if I expose the E10 solution to a 4 Angstrom molecular sieve like alumino-silicate the ethanol, any water in solution, and anything smaller than the hydrocarbon strings themselves should be absorbed, yes? Anyone tried this on here?
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Old 02-23-2009, 01:01 AM
85e150six4mtod 85e150six4mtod is offline
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Yes, the 10%, my equipment is not designed for it. Don't lecture me.
Easier to change whatever few parts might be incompatable.

Don't ask about potential dangerous activities on public forums if you don't want lectures.

If you are expecting to find petrochemical engineers on this site, you may have to wait for an answer. I'm sure there are a couple.
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Old 02-23-2009, 01:03 AM
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The short answer to your original question is: No.
The long answer is that it's doable, but it's not so simple and expensive, and what you get will likely to be worse than the original gasoline you started with.

For some info:
Re: Removing Ethanol from Gas?
Re: Removing Ethanol from Gas?

Aviation gas should be alcohol free, and maybe marine gas, too. Some states has alcohol free gas, other don't -- but there's no simple, generic answer who sells what, and where.
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Old 02-23-2009, 07:56 AM
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aurgathor - thank you, that's some very helpful information. I did know about avgas but I will check out marine fuels, too.

85e150six4mtod - I understand why you reacted the way you did, but it seems very inappropriate to me on this forum as most of the modifications discussed in the high performance type threads as well as the suspension lifting threads involve changes the these trucks that could easily be much more dangerous than distilling some chemicals off in the woods with discarded commercial lab equipment. At least with my activities, if I royally screw up I'm the only one who pays; if someone with an 8" homemade lift or a homemade propane injection system (or brake upgrade or...) screws up they're a danger to the general public. Not that I'm saying these people need to be warned; they're not children and this is the USA - the second I have people second guessing everything I do I should be moving somewhere else. I do appreciate your concern though and I don't intend to antagonize you, just please consider this point.

To your actual response, it would be really nice if I could just change some hoses and o-rings and be done with it, but I have this hobby of collecting and using antique farm and construction machinery where I'm dealing with engines that I might not be able to get new fuel seals for (and I'm not so good at making my own), where pitting to cast aluminum housings spells the end of the machine as replacements are unavailable, and where the equipment sits for long periods of time (even with a stabilizer the gasohol fuels will absorb a lot more moisture than straight gasoline).
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Old 02-23-2009, 11:57 AM
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Its going to be difficult, but I would try phase separation. This is theory only. I havent tried it or seen it done. Add water at a proportion that will "saturate" the alcohol. Then, chill the mixture until the alcohol-water solution separates from the gasoline and settles at the bottom.

This "phase separation" is one of the many reasons gasohol is not suitable for aviation use.

The simpler solution, if your equipment will tolerate it, is to use 100 octane aviation gasoline. Its really not that much more expensive. The problem with using it in antique equipment is plug fouling and other deposits from the 5X more lead than auto gas used to have, even if it is called called "Low Lead". That is why we are trying, without success, any oil company to deliver a truckload of straight unleaded gasoline to our airport.

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Old 02-24-2009, 09:32 PM
monckywrench monckywrench is offline
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You are probably out of luck as far as (practical) separation.

You can of course still bulk-buy unleaded and leaded race gas without alcohol in various grades:

VP RACING FUELS HOMEPAGE

Mechanical solutions include clear powder coating aluminum castings and getting better at (or farming out) gasket and seal fabrication/replacement/industrial sourcing.(Scan rare gaskets and print on cardstock to make replacements. This will let you store and even email gasket patterns where useful!)

Drain when not using and refilling with ethanol-free fuel. (I'd add gross overdoses of Sta-Bil, which I do anyway for my yard-sitters.)

Boat Engines - Dangers and Precautions Necessary with E10 Ethanol-Blend Gasoline.
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Old 02-24-2009, 09:52 PM
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This is all really helpful,thank you everyone. I think my first check will be with a marina nearby for ethanol free fuel. Also being a major tinkerer I can't resist the urge to run some small separation experiments (mason jar sized, at least at first), but I will need a reliable way to test the ethanol content of the fuels for the experiments to be meaningful (any ideas on this,guys?).

Scanning gaskets - why didn't I think of that! I dunno, I can make larger seals reasonably well, but I always end up wrecking smaller ones while trying to cut really tight angles and thin strips. Also, most of my equipment are works in progress, so I'd rather spend my hobby time fixing things that are broken from 60 years of hard use than from solvent based fuels. Sigh.

Thanks again!
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Old 02-25-2009, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by chevenstein View Post
This is all really helpful,thank you everyone. I will need a reliable way to test the ethanol content of the fuels for the experiments to be meaningful (any ideas on this,guys?).
Here is an "at home" test you can do: Classic Whaler: Boston Whaler: Reference: Fuel Systems: Ethanol Test

You can also buy a test kit from most Briggs & Stratton dealer's, or online here: http://www.m-and-d.com/BS-100023.html The kit is only $6.20.
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Old 02-25-2009, 05:28 PM
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"but I always end up wrecking smaller ones while trying to cut really tight angles and thin strips."

Use a hardwood or Masonite backing, and don't "cut" so much as "punch" downward.
Tubing can be sharpened with a Dremel to make hole punches, and X-acto knives have CHISEL tip blades available (tap gently!) to cut straight down.
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Old 02-25-2009, 05:28 PM
 
 
 
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