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Author Topic: Biodiesel Information  (Read 15734 times)

quinnf

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Biodiesel Information
« on: December 09, 2005, 02:38:17 AM »
For those of you who are interested in what's involved in making biodiesel, here's an excellent site.  Some friends are doing this, using waste fry oil from the kitchen of a large corporate employer nearby my work, and the product is of the consistency and color and clarity of mineral diesel.  Their diesel VW jettas have no complaints and run on it daily. 

I've made a few batches myself just for grins and the process works well.  Making it cost-effective would take some investment in time and a little space for equipment, which can be found in any junkyard.  The biggest recurring expense is securing a reliable supply of affordable methanol, but probably the most difficult task is finding a source of relatively clean oil without too much animal fat.  However beggars can't be choosers.  It all burns. 

Maybe this can be a place where we can generate some interesting discussion.  Enjoy.

Quinn

http://www.journeytoforever.org/biodiesel_make.html

« Last Edit: December 09, 2005, 05:31:34 AM by quinnf »

solarguy

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2006, 11:41:19 PM »
Please be aware that much of the information concerning biodiesel brewing protocols (recipes) found on the Journey To Forever website are outdated at best, and downright misleading or wrong at worst.  Although the website is attractive and appears well researched, there are fundamental errors that will cause a new home brewer a world of trouble.  Especially, you should avoid using the so called "Fool Proof" method.  It's wrong and will cause you to make bad fuel, or no fuel at all.

I do not lightly offer this criticism, but this is important to the folks who are new to the hobby.  I am one of many who hold this opinion. 

A far better resource is:

http://biodiesel.infopop.cc/groupee/forums

Some of the smartest biodiesel amateurs and professionals from around the world are frequent contributors to this discussion list.  And unlike the JTF site, they are genuinely interested in science, experimentation and helping the newer members.

If you go to the the infopop site and do a search for the "Foolproof Method" you will find loads of information from lots of people with integrity and know-how, who are highly critical of the junk science behind this recipe.  It pains me to say this, but the gentleman who runs the JTF site is widely acknowledged as the laughingstock of the home brew biodiesel world.  There is no easy way to put that.

On the bright side, both my Lister and my VW love the home brew.

Finest regards,

troy

hotater

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2006, 02:02:49 AM »
WOW!!  What a load of great information.  .  ;D
7200 hrs on 6-1/5Kw, FuKing Listeroid,
Currently running PS-Kit 6-1/5Kw...and some MPs and Chanfas and diesel snowplows and trucks and stuff.

solarguy

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2006, 02:12:45 AM »
Dear Hotater,

I am officially warning you that if you fiddle around very much with biodiesel, and/or the Infopop website, you will be completely addicted and there is no known cure.

Good luck and have fun!!

troy

ps, this post/laptop is biodiesel/Listeroid powered

Canuck

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2006, 05:14:07 PM »
Hi All,

I have an "appleseed" (converted 175 litre electric hot water tank) reactor running in my garage... and have pumped a few thousand litres of biodiesel through it using the two step (acid/base) method as outlined in the infopop site mentioned earlier in this string.

I think that the Journey to Forever site is a good place to get an overview but the technical expertise is to be found on the infopop site.

I run my cummins powered truck and my parents TDI VW on 100% Bio... (The VW has run on it since new) I plan to use Bio to run a Listeroid Genset....

Given that I haven't purchased the Listeroid yet.... does anyone have any info on bio compatability in the Lister clones?  I know that the original seals in the (chinese made) gear pump I use in my reactor lasted about ten minutes once Biodiesel hit them!

cheers,

Canuck
Canuck

solarguy

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2006, 11:38:34 PM »
I have run hundreds of gallons of B100 through my Lister with no fuel related problems.  Lately the fuel pump seeps a tiny bit, but I'm not convinced that using biodiesel all along would have prevented that.

Please note that I threw away the original fuel line, petcock, fuel filter and fuel tank, so can't comment on compatibility.  They were crap to start and it is unlikely that biodiesel would have improved that any.

Finest regards,

troy

kpgv

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2006, 04:52:45 PM »
If a guy wanted to try the Bio-diesel route, but didn't aspire to become a research chemist and inventor in the process, which "program" would you recomend to go with that will work best by "Follow the Directions"?

Kevin

rgroves

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2006, 05:13:15 PM »
If a guy wanted to try the Bio-diesel route, but didn't aspire to become a research chemist and inventor in the process, which "program" would you recomend to go with that will work best by "Follow the Directions"?

Kevin

http://www.girlmark.com/

Mark Alovert has a good, well-written manual for a simple reactor based on a water heater.  Easy to understand, low on the lefty bullshit.  Grounded in understandable chemistry.  She teaches classes all over, and is often in the Denver area.

Russell Groves
A country boy can survive - Hank Williams Jr.

Canuck

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2006, 06:06:50 PM »
Hi All,

I agree with Russell... If you're going to seek out a single guru for all things biodiesel.... Mark Alovert (Girl Mark in her postings) is the one to turn to.

For a good example of what a reactor looks like go here...¬  This is not mine... but is very close.

http://www.cybernet1.com/mcquaid/Appleseed%20proccessor.htm

couple of cautions.... I would strongly advise all newcomers to the biodiesel process to experiment with small scale (blender batches) runs first. When you are confident, move up to a 20 litre pail and then the full scale reactor. This is particularly important when you are dealing with heavily used waste oil that is acidic and needs the two step (acid/base) reaction.¬ 

The whole process is very simple, but there are some subtle things to look for and it is much easier to deal with a blender full of goo than 175 litres!¬  (ask me how I know this!!¬  ¬ ::) )

The Methanol/Sodium Hydroxide solution is NASTY...it will turn your skin to soap faster than you can wash it off.

When dealing with small batches in an unsealed pail there is a strong possibility that a lot of the Methanol will fume off. If you lose enough the reaction will halt and you will be left with Goo or gel. Plus the Methanal fumes are both toxic and explosive.¬  Make sure you have a lid of some sort on your reactor.

Fore warned is Fore armed as my Grandfather used to say!

Good luck!

Rob.
Canuck

Rainbow-Farm

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2006, 05:37:21 AM »
Rob/Canuck:

I was looking at Girl Mark Alovert's water-tank set-up and I noticed that she uses a water pump from Harbor Freight/Northern Tools, on sale right now for $25. I had been looking at fuel pumps for diesel that run to $250.

The 1/2 HP pump from Harbor ... well, if Girl Mark is using it, then I have to presume that it can handle the biodiesel with no issues (material in seals, like rubber, etc.)... do you have any experience with this aspect of it?

For the source of oil, I keep hearing from people who buy vegetable oil that is past its date, for cheap... like for less than the extra cost and bother of used oil. Might be worth checking out (each to his own, as this is all local/regional... gotta find it close to home).
Do not trust the "grid" folks!

biobill

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #10 on: October 27, 2006, 01:42:08 PM »
Hi Rainbow
 I've got one of those blue Chinese 1/2 hp pumps that I use to transfer oil into the reactor, 150 gallons at a time. It's slow but has been reliable. Don't think that I'd count on it for biodiesel though. The pump is available through many sources and none of them have claimed compatibility. It's a straight centrifugal type and I suspect the shaft seal would degrade.    Bill
Off grid since 1990
6/1 Metro DI living in basement, cogen
6/1 Metro IDI running barn & biodiesel processer
VW 1.6 diesels all over the place
Isuzu Boxtruck, Ford Backhoe, all running on biodiesel
Needs diesel lawnmower & chainsaw

Rainbow-Farm

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2006, 02:16:22 PM »
Thanks, Bill. I am looking for something to get the biodiesel up into the fuel tank above the engine (for gravity feed).

Although, first I have to make some... still looking for the lye, and still working on getting some spoiled (past expiry date) or used oil.

I have (solar panels and) batteries at my unheated camper... not too good in the cold... heating cost not worth it... just started thinking of running the whole thing on the generator on biodiesel. I could use all the electric heat I want. The propane heater burns my eyes after a day or so, and the electricity is 32 cents down there in winter.
Do not trust the "grid" folks!

biobill

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #12 on: October 28, 2006, 01:42:02 AM »
Thanks, Bill. I am looking for something to get the biodiesel up into the fuel tank above the engine (for gravity feed).


.I have (solar panels and) batteries at my unheated camper... not too good in the cold... heating cost not worth it... just started thinking of running the whole thing on the generator on biodiesel. I could use all the electric heat I want. The propane heater burns my eyes after a day or so, and the electricity is 32 cents down there in winter.
  Hi Rainbow
   Ya know, if you are on limited solar  power, (like me) I'd just get a manual barrel pump. The suction tubes are removable so you can configure it however works for you. They are inexpensive and quiet, and you only need to pump about 6gal/24hr for the thumper.
   Being in a similar situation as yourself, my processer was origionally set up as mostly gravity feed with a lawmmower engine to power the mixer and hand pumps to do what gravity couldn't.  Seemed all wrong though, using gas to make bio. and, at 150gal batches , it was a workout. Hence the Listeroid. Its also much nicer to listen too than that screaming B&S. Good luck, Bill
Off grid since 1990
6/1 Metro DI living in basement, cogen
6/1 Metro IDI running barn & biodiesel processer
VW 1.6 diesels all over the place
Isuzu Boxtruck, Ford Backhoe, all running on biodiesel
Needs diesel lawnmower & chainsaw

Chuggy

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2008, 12:15:31 PM »
Another great resource for biodiesel is our collaborative biodiesel tutorial (CBT) lots of input from 'Mark' Maria Alovert and other well known names in the biodiesel community.

http://www.biodieselcommunity.org/

peace n grease
junk and disorderly
Chug


Rainbow-Farm

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Re: Biodiesel Information
« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2008, 08:46:44 PM »
Oh, boy, has some time passed! There was a medical problem in there. I now have 2 generators running on biodiesel. I have put aside any idea of running the NY place on anything. I don't get there much, and now wonder why I go at all, even though I know why.

We also got 3 Land Cruisers, diesel (never sold in US, but many ended up there), all running on biodiesel.

I still have a pile to do, but things are well on their way. The price of gas forced/caused production of ready-to-burn 2-micron veggie oil and biodiesel from that same veggie oil. I can get it delivered, good price on the storage tank, or I can drive over and pick it up, maybe 10 miles from home.

The times they are indeed a changin'
Do not trust the "grid" folks!