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steveyfrac

Biodiesel General Discussion

94 posts in this topic

In a nutshell, do not use the Smart on waste or pure veggie oil. The injectors are not big enough for WVO to keep clear. The glycerine in the oil will cake on the injectors and literally kill them. Larger engines can withstand this fairly well, but not the smaller engines (Smart, Kaboda, Cat, etc). WVO and PVO are thick at the best of times and will harm the fuel pumps as well.Plus, the fuel heaters, extra tank, lines etc..... Where are you going to put them?Robert

I realize that you cannot put vegetable oil in the gas tank with out a proper engine conversion. It might run but problems are bound to happen. In a nut shell, the problem with raw oil is the viscosity. So something has to be done about it. At a certain temperature oil (or cleaned and tested used oil) becomes the same viscosity as diesel. A fuel system modification (which is what I was referring to) is a way of heating the oil so it can be used. A trip starts and ends on mineral diesel but changes fuel systems once the oil is hot enough. The modifications include installing a second tank. (mounted off one tow hooks or in trunck compartment... Be creative lol) You then need to heat the contents of the tank, a portion of the line and the vegitable oil fuel filter. The idea is that you start on diesel untill your vegetable oil is hot and then switch over to the vegetable oil with a solenoid valve. (Email me for where to buy one or rent the biodiesel "bible" from my last post) The oil fuel system runs into your diesel system just before the injector pump providing the engine with reliable safe fuel no different than diesel if it was tested cleaned and boiled properly. You also need to put in a speacial fuel/oil filter and tank oil fuel pump that can handle the viscous material. These conversion kits can be purchased for VW's and maybe even the Smart. The heating of the oil can be done with a heater core type system run off the cars coolant system but a 12v setup might work best. Some conversions use both.The above conversion is so you can safely run oil without problems. There IS an engine conversion requiring bigger injectors and special glow plugs if you want to run oil through the cars regular fuel system. There are conversion kits that you can buy for that too. That book from my last post has alot of accurate information with references for buying parts or how to's for the DIY minded individual.

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If you can tackle the viscosity problem of running vegetable oil with with either an engine or fuel system conversion there is still one apparent issue that I am aware of and it is a big one for the Smart. Biodisel, blend, commercial or homemade, svo and wvo are all oil. They may burn like diesel and in some cases burn better but it is not mineral diesel. In every vehicle there is some amount of blow by. This is where the used and unused fuel makes it past the cylinder walls and piston rings during the 4 stroke process. It is the main reason we change our oil on top of the fact that oil wears out. That's why it turns black. There is an oil filter because some of the blow by caused the oil to thicken and even chunck up. . Some small engine have extremely tight oil passages which requires synthetic oil and frequent oil changes. The oil passages clogging would result in an engine siezing or an internal brake down. Regular oil and filter changes and in some cases synthetic oil take care of this problem. The big problem with vegetable oil is that it does not react so well with motor oil. It chunks up and can clog an oil filter or worse an oil passage even in larger diesels. This is combatted by frequent oil changes. (4000kms which is a good idea anyways.) This is not a big issue for newer engines but for older and badly worn engines where more blow by takes place.It is also an isse we want to consider with the CDI because it has tiny oil passages. Other than that "bio fuel" in all of its forms can be run successfully in the Smart or any diesel for that matter when preliminary steps have taken place. Know what your doing!!Which is why I recommend that book I mentioned 2 posts ago.

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Good point. Peugeot worm drive axles use vegetable oil too (Castor if you want to know) and a lot of them were refilled with dino oil when the cars were new in North America back in the fifties and sixties. The VO residue and mineral oils would turn into an bubble-filled mayonnaise, and if there was enough residual VO left in the unit, the gears would cavitate severely due to the breakdown in lubrication properties.Same would be true in an engine...

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I have a sneaking suspension that my biodiesel supplier for the last three years (United Petroleum) is about to exit the alternative fuel marketing arena. I've sent an e-mail to confirm and am now waiting for a reply. As an alternative I've asked to join the Vancouver Biodiesel Co-op where I'll buy B100 and blend down to B50 summer andB20 winter. It's tough to try to do the right thing for the car and the environment when there's no incentive to do so...

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I would not be surprised. Our glorious government's tax changes (as of Jan 1, 2010 IIRC :scratch: ) have killed off pretty much all the for-profit biodiesel producers in British Columbia.

Private co-ops are the way forward in the near term.

Hmm... bringing home a load of B100 would be an additional reason for a trip to the Lower Mainland... I've used up the 70 litres I got on the Island and my wee smartie misses "the good stuff".

B :drive:

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Cowichan has a BD Coop and has for many years.

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Yes, Victoria has one too. That is where I got the B100.

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I did the online orientation earlier this spring too.Once I get sorted at my new place, "the cottage", I'll hope to have a few spare dollars left for a "run for the B"!:sun:

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I was the guinea pig for the on-line member registration which was quick and easy.Filled up for the first time today with a blend of B50, using Chevron diesel.Went for a drive to Chinatown (to pick up a couple of barbequed ducks from the Dollar Meat Store, mmmmm)and noticed how quiet the engine was running plus the exhaust smells better than the old Bio I was using.Could it be because this is made from 100% recycled vegetable oil and my old Bio was made from animal and vegetable products?

Edited by lebikerboy

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Yes, I think that's the reason. Veggie oil instead of tallow definitely smells nicer. They do an exceptionally good job at VBC.B :sun:

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Since I've been using Vancouver Co-op Biodiesel I've noticed a gradual improvement in mileage or else the engine is finally broken in at 48,000K.4.2l per 100km is pretty damn good considering I use softtouch most of the time, wide tires, remap, use of aforementioned biodiesel and, the fact that I drive it like I stole it most of the time...

Edited by lebikerboy

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Uh-oh... looks like even the B50 cardlock is in jeopardy. I recently wrote to Parkland Fuels, who sell B50 at their cardlock in North Vancouver, whether there was any possibility they might offer it up here one day. The reply from Sales Rep Don Porter was very disheartening.

Bill,

We have been selling B50 from our corporate card lock in North Vancouver, unfortunately we don’t have a card lock facility in Kamloops or Kelowna to offer the product. Currently we have no plans to build in either location, so the product won’t be available in the Okanagan in the foreseeable future. As the per litre cost is approximately 30 cents higher than regular diesel, the volumes have dropped dramatically, and so we are reviewing the viability of offering the product at any of our locations. [emphasis is mine]

So the Biodiesel Co-op may soon be our only source! :banghead:

Bil :sun:

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United Petroleum (now Columbia Fuels) have decided not to sell anything more than the standard BC mandated B5 blend... :angry: I told them the only reason I bought their product was because of the availabilityof B20 and B50 and they didn't seem to care. I just shredded the card lock card.

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Yeah my supplier of a few years ago in Baie d'Urfe (QC) stopped selling it last year as I found out when I went round there to stock up.haven't found anywhere else local to the West Island.

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Yeah, Rolfquo started winding down B100 sales a couple of years ago and stopped completely last year. At the time they said sales were suspended until they could find a new source of raw waste oils. Well, they never did. Unfortunately, whenever someone sees demand for something, they raise prices. While waste oil stock was free for a long time, as demand rose, so did the price. The guys here told me that when they suspended production, raw waste stock was up to $1.10 a litre. When I called in April this year, they said it cost more than a litre of petro diesel. :(

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Finally made the trek to Vancouver and bought 60 litres of

B100. Threw a little in the tank and by the time i got home

the engine was running sooo much quieter... :icon_lol:

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