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Old 03-04-2006, 10:56 AM   #15
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go to biodiesel.org for local distributers

I purchase commercially produced biodiesel (from Soy) for my Duramax and our VW TDI. Usually in B20 or B100 formulations (depends on the distributer). Both vehicles love it. I would not fill up my tank with straight B100. I always mix into no less then half a tank of petro diesel. It is not a lot more expensive these days and is not subject to market fluctuations (WSP has been charging $2.85 a gallon for months).
-Ken
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Old 03-04-2006, 12:46 PM   #16
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hi folks

figuring the true-complete-but-not-exagerated-ad-infinity-cost of any fuel is COMPLICATED......

and made moreso when going from single maker/user costs to a volume scale for national needs...

ethanol or biod?.....in any percentage....

-gotta build refinery-like plants...this cost....tax breaks or fed incentives?
-grow oil....beans/corn...figureing farm incentives is a quagmire...
-more soil erosion; more nitrogen in drinking water....cost
-farming uses fuel.......figure that somehow along with other farm production costs....
-adding methane?...gonna need to collect sh1t;
-make a slurry, then deal with true fecal waste...sometimes a bigger volume that the original pile of poo...
-hard to collect sh1t from small farmers....
-so need the big pork/beef "plants" involved...and so they expand heard sizes and get better subsides.....and produce more industrial costs...
-biod......means more nitrogen waste into the air....so deal with n.o. costs

and this is just a quick list...feel free to add other cost items...

it's hard to find clean data about costs on ethanol or biod...or any waste fuel....and each interest publishes misleading info about the others while promoting their 'alternative fuel' as less costly...blah, blah.

and what about hydrogen?
man this really appeals to me...but gm just killed a 1 BILLION dollar hydrogen test program....for a variety of short sighted reasons....

waste oil has a high energy value, fecal/plant waste a low energy value using either to power internal combustion...is still short term....

i don't think green fuels or brown fuels or yellow fuels are less costly to provide than the black gold fuels....
but it is important to push each technology...
if only for the sake of learning/research...
and really that needs subsides.....lots.

i love the guy on tv powering his hummer/rv across the country with a little mulch, poop, diesel, electric, biod, ethanol, methane....
but do we really want all of our neighbors....making fuel?...ever lived near a meth lab?

hope i just cleared things up and brightened your day!

cheers all....
i'm off for a bicycle ride....powered by twinkies and coke!

2air'
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Old 04-09-2006, 08:00 PM   #17
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I'm glad I ran across this thread.

I currently make biodiesel. Here are a couple of quick notes for the interested. I'm not super expert but I do have some experience in making it and using it in my 2004 Duramax....runs great by the way.

1. I will run in the Sprinter just fine. Any diesel newer than 1985 will have the newer gaskets, seals and hoses that biodiesel will not break down. These were implemented in 85 due to the change made in petro diesel to meet EPA low sulphur requirements. Dodge says no so you will be less likely to pour a low quality or unfiltered biodiesel in your rig. They do not warranty biodiesel or petro diesel in any vechicle by the way.

2. You will not have to collect crap to make biodiesel. You mix your lye with methanol (bought in bulk in drums or tanks to keep the cost lower) and mixed with the filtered SVO in the processor.

3. The 'waste' is glycerol which can be further processed to recover extra methanol (which can be reused) and the glycerine....which can be sold as well.

4. The titration tests are to determine the level of saturated fats in the WVO which will dictate the amount of methanol/lye needed to complete the process. Only uses a couple of ounces to do this.

5. Greascar is very different from biodiesel. Not saying it's a bad system...just wouldn't try doint it yourself. Buy a professionaly built system that does all the fuel switching for you. Greatly reduces the chance of damaging your engine.

Feel free to ask any questions if any come to mind,
Fish
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Old 04-09-2006, 08:17 PM   #18
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Fish,

Congratulations and keep up the good work.

The only thing I don't understand is who will buy the glycerine?

If you are making thousand gallon batches, it would be worthwhile to purify and sell the glycerine, but in smaller volumes will just be a waste stream looking for a gutter or gopher hole.

Unless you mix it with a little nitric acid and make nitroglycerine.
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Old 04-09-2006, 08:50 PM   #19
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2air,
To me the biggest advantage of poop, bio, or ethy is the renewablility of it. When dino fuels are gone, they is GONE! There are several theories and theorists that feel that we are on a downward spiral, and that the Arabian fields have maxed out and will be in a decline. What I find interesting is that Brazil has gone 100% ethanol...they get theirs from sugar cane. Basically told OPEC where to shove it It did not happen overnight, but it can be done...unfortunately not in a country that has a strong oil lobby like the US of A.

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Old 04-09-2006, 09:24 PM   #20
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I don't want to mess with anything that unstable there Mark, but there are companies that can use glycerine (link). We never dump anything! We are currently making 500 gallon batches and we're designing the 10,000 gallon processor now as well.

From all of our research, the best renewable source for the oils to make biodiesel is algae. Algae can be 'grown' in 48 hours to make WAY more oil than any McDonald's can do in a week with a decent size algae farm. We have plenty of farm land to develope this on, but we're still trying to find the correct method.

Algae is the fastest turn-around time of any oil source which is the highest oil yield per acre. There are several theories of which types of land produces the best results for this. Some say near nuclear reactors, and some just say warmer climates....who knows right now. We're trying to figure all these things out as well. Luckily, we have several wealthy farmers who are willing to help us to help them...so it works out well and we like helping the farm/farmers.

When you talk about telling OPEC to stick it somewhere...this is the real method. Then, we'll have to convert all of your motorhomes to diesels! Yeah...more projects. I best you could sell that to your wives a lot easier if algaediesel was steady at $1.40 per gallon.

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Old 04-09-2006, 09:34 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wahoonc
What I find interesting is that Brazil has gone 100% ethanol...they get theirs from sugar cane. Basically told OPEC where to shove it It did not happen overnight, but it can be done...unfortunately not in a country that has a strong oil lobby like the US of A.

Aaron
No, that works best in a country where there is a strong sugar lobby. Like Brazil. Their example is fairly representative of what happens when a corrupt government orders their ordinary citizens to pay more for a product so that huge land barons can get even more wealthy. Or what Archers-Daniels-Midland would like to see happen here (talk about your powerful lobbiests....).

Folks, there ain't no big evil conspiracy out there to keep you from having 20 cent per gallon fuel once again. To make biodiesel, alcohol, hydrogen, or synthetic coal fuels TAKES energy. In some cases it takes MORE energy than the resulting fuel contains. In other cases there is a rather limited source of potential supply.

What makes oil so desirable is that it comes nearly ready to burn. It is cheap to pump, cheap to transport, and cheap to refine. Even some of the more expensive-to-process versions - tar sands, for example - are far cheaper than the current alternatives. The problems with oil are well known, of course.

People around the globe are working hard on alternatives to oil. This is because they are greedy too, just like the oil companies. A successful product will be worth billion$, maybe trillion$. So maybe someday I'll be planting switchgrass down in the bottom to sell as a fuel stock. And maybe someday I'll fly on a hydrogen fueled aircraft.

But in the meantime, watch out for the snake oil salesmen.

Mark
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Old 04-09-2006, 09:36 PM   #22
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One more quick little bit of info:

From 1978 to 1996, the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory experimented with using algae as a biodiesel source in the "Aquatic Species Program". A recent paper from Michael Briggs at the UNH Biodiesel Group, offers estimates for the realistic replacement of all vehicular fuel with biodiesel by utilizing algae that has a greater than 50 % natural oil content, which he suggests can be grown on algae ponds at wastewater treatment plants. [2]
Meanwhile, independent results have shown that GreenFuel Technologies[3], a Cambridge, MA company founded by Isaac Berzin, has been successful in producing biodiesel growing algae on flue gas emissions from power plant smokestacks. Using a patented algae bioreactor, GreenFuel utilizes microalgae and a process of photomodulation to reduce emissions: 40 percent less carbon dioxide and 86 percent less nitrous oxide. This oil-rich algae can then be extracted from the system and processed into biodiesel, and the dried remainder further reprocessed to create ethanol. The company is testing their method at the MIT cogeneration facility and at an undisclosed 1000-megawatt power facility in the southwestern U.S. [4]


A quote from Here (in the history area)
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Old 04-09-2006, 09:45 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fish36991
I'm glad I ran across this thread.

I currently make biodiesel. Here are a couple of quick notes for the interested. I'm not super expert but I do have some experience in making it and using it in my 2004 Duramax....runs great by the way.

1. I will run in the Sprinter just fine. Any diesel newer than 1985 will have the newer gaskets, seals and hoses that biodiesel will not break down. These were implemented in 85 due to the change made in petro diesel to meet EPA low sulphur requirements. Dodge says no so you will be less likely to pour a low quality or unfiltered biodiesel in your rig. They do not warranty biodiesel or petro diesel in any vechicle by the way.

2. You will not have to collect crap to make biodiesel. You mix your lye with methanol (bought in bulk in drums or tanks to keep the cost lower) and mixed with the filtered SVO in the processor.

3. The 'waste' is glycerol which can be further processed to recover extra methanol (which can be reused) and the glycerine....which can be sold as well.

4. The titration tests are to determine the level of saturated fats in the WVO which will dictate the amount of methanol/lye needed to complete the process. Only uses a couple of ounces to do this.

5. Greascar is very different from biodiesel. Not saying it's a bad system...just wouldn't try doint it yourself. Buy a professionaly built system that does all the fuel switching for you. Greatly reduces the chance of damaging your engine.

Feel free to ask any questions if any come to mind,
Fish
What system do you use/recommend? Appleseed/GirlMark? Fuelmeister?

Have you gone to one of the biodiesel classes recently?

I am interested in making about 200 gallons a month for my own use.

Thanks,
Mark
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Old 04-09-2006, 09:50 PM   #24
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Fish,

Thanks for all the algae links. I haven't been following the algae-oil technology, I'm more in the cellulosic ethanol (pronounced "switchgrass") camp.

I read the thing on glycerine earlier, and it still smells like smoke and mirrors trying to cover up a dirty little secret.

I'm all for making 10,000 gallons at a time and investing in a still to purify the glycerine. But I worry about the backyard and garage operators that are just sending the waste products down the toilet. Or dumping it out back at night.
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Old 04-09-2006, 10:11 PM   #25
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Our local paper has an article on biodiesel today. The town of Manteo NC is setting up a program to use it in their gov't trucks and buses. The cost was thought to be $1.50 per gallon using free waste cooking oil. They had two concerns 1st was it was more votile 2nd it would ruin rubber hoses and 'o' rings. They didn't mention the tank heaters, less fuel mileage and loss of horsepower. The loss of horsepower probably isn't that much of an issue with school buses here in the flatlands. If I knew how to post the article I would do so. I think it might be somewhat lengthy to cut and paste.
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Old 04-09-2006, 10:21 PM   #26
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Is this the article: http://home.hamptonroads.com/stories...734&ran=183818
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Old 04-09-2006, 10:23 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by wahoonc
2air,
To me the biggest advantage of poop, bio, or ethy is the renewablility of it. When dino fuels are gone, they is GONE! Aaron
hi aaron and the rest of you greazzzzzzzr's....

renewability is a tricky issue....

wood products, for example are 'renewable' but the quality of wood products has declined with 'new wood'...and tree cover continues to decline....as the land under it becomes more valuable for living space...

the energy costs to produce energy from plant products....is still greater than the reward....perhaps someday....and pushing the technology is useful...for the learning that is generated.....moreso than the fuel right now....

with ethanol slated to replace mtbe as a gasoline additive....we will have an ethanol shortage nationwide this year....without e85 included....

agriculture is hard on the enviroment and only gets worse when farming is supersized...waste from animal production is hugh issue....collecting and using it is sort of like an epa superfund clean up process....

so renewable energy schemes work best right now at the boutique scale or bus fleets or solo gonzo guys....if ya got the space and energy....go for it.....i love the smell of french fries in the morning! or crispy cremes or peanuts....

and we agree completely on the declining supply of oil...but as j54mark notes....we are still using the easiest, cheapest of the oil supply....like fish in a barrel....

early in the oil refinery days...it was more like hogs...every bit was used including the oink....and refinery development was progressing with each distilled fraction finding value...

then came high grade west texas crude....almost ready to use out of the ground...this along with high grade middle east oil (which is pretty good stuff too)....lead to more 'discovery efforts' and less refinery science....

sure this supply will go sooner or later...and at a greatly increasing pace....with china now awakened to development.

but right now the usa is still taking the easy route...even if expensive for the citizens....using this arab oil.....and now we have started IMPORTING gasoline....at a record pace (we make 17mil gal/day...we use 20mil gal/day...do the math)....because "ordering out" is less messy than making it at home....

i've read that the usa has within the coastal borders...enough oil to supply our needs for 57 years....without a drop of import. but we've greatly reduced using our own....shall we list the reasons why?

the 2nd largest oil reserve on the planet (after the middle east)...is CANADA.
and as j54mark points out..getting the oil out of the mud, now that crude is 60+$ a barrel....is priced right......

burning oil is still gonna do whatever it does to earth and the atmosphere....
burning grass/bio/veggie/methane....and even alcohol....produces byproducts......that are nasty.

hydrogen really seems to be the long term clean solution....with lots more diesel usage in the mean time....

back to the original post..... the fuel injectors on the superduties become an issue unless the biod is extremely clean....

older diesels seem to tolerate diverse fuel sources better.....


and did you guys see that an audi v12 diesel won the 12 hours of sebring this year!!! a new car/drivetrain wins the first race entered!

bring on the diesel race cars!!

cheers
2air'
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Old 04-09-2006, 10:48 PM   #28
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other thoughts for markexc500....

the expert superduty mechanics suggest no more that 10-15%biod....for the new superduties...

i'd think about warranty issues too....remember the 3year/36 goes to 100k on the powerplant....pretty sure biod will screw the engine warranty big time....

and it would be coversion would be hard to hide....at service time.

i've been in the 05 a year and considered biod, propane, banks systems and so on....now that i've had minor service issues....i'm glad that the truck is still stock...

if i had an old vw diesel car...i'd go for biod right now.....

cheers
2air'
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