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Things you can do to get maximum engine life from a VO converted diesel.
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quote:
Originally posted by ronbros:
IM running a 1997 GMC 6.5T suburban,no conversion at all.
mix up my blend,( i know this should be in blends), dump it into factory tank, im off to wherever, thats it.
around 5000 miles all is good. summer was 100* plus no probs. cold now 50* morn. starts 1st time shakes a little smooths out 30sec. im off and runnin for the day.
Thx ronm


Ron..
Are you familiar with the studies done on decreased engine life on diesel/VO blends?
 
Location: Central MN..Brrrrrr! | Registered: November 06, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Okay so I have spent almost my entire Thanksgiving vacation time off here in America reading numerous threads about water injection, trying to determine if it is in-fact effective at reducing coking build-up.

I like several others that have posted comments here know the web is full of opinions that are often just that, strange with what seems like so many people using used cooking oils, etc. as fuel there aren't more actual teardown reports, or factual failure reports from coking. Yes I understand the possibility of coking, and the concept of water injecting maybe reducing it, but

I guess the bottom line I am looking for is IF I run diesel until the engine is properly warmed, before switching to veg oil, and make sure I flush with diesel before shutdown, is coking really something I need to be overly concerned with, and if so, does water injection really help reduce this. I am not concerned with more power, I’m just worried about the coking.
 
Registered: November 28, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thats why I never run over 70% wvo.Besides fueling can take forever.


126 diesels yahoo groups
83 SD straight exhaust 94 Cobra
Cold air,real cold.Cobra electric radiator fan,Monark nozzles,10 psi electric fuel pump.85 amp alternator 12" subs.23 psi boost, 30 micron filter,an 5 micron filter added
2 tank,wvo,boost guage ,line heaters,coolant heater Fattywagons customer. 99 S320 with 75 more hp.
 
Location: Bristol Tennessee | Registered: January 05, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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DCS I read your 23 April 07 post about your simple washer system. Sounds like you and I are looking for the same thing. Running 100% veg oil and reducing the possibility of the coking. Saw some really ugly pix of coked wvo engine, coked wvo jetta
Anyway hoping you and others may have some educated insight specifically dealing with water injection reducing coking.

Nat I appreciate your responce however I thought this was a 100% Straight Vegetable Oil (SVO) as fuel thread. I would be intrested in discussing your setup in TN as I myself have land around Telico Plains and am looking at setting up my tractor and truck to run on SVO and it does get cooler up there at times so I will have to take that into consideration, but I think we would do that on another thread.
 
Registered: November 28, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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danalinscott you started this thread with ways to maximize engine life, that's where I got my original ideas of engine warm up etc. before switching to the veg tank.

I am wondering about using engine oil with maybe a pancake tap at the engine oil filter to heat the veg oil rather then engine water coolant. Pros or cons one over the other?

I am gathering that some sort of heated pickup is better then running a heater coil into the whole veg tank, but I am wondering about using engine oil for heating the supply lines and maybe the filter etc. rather then radiator fluid. I thought I read in one of these posts hotter is better, then I thought I read someone else say cooler is better.

I would also be interested on your take of water injection reducing coke build-up.

I also take it that eng oil changes are the thing, but am I to understand that if you start finding polymerization in the oil a ring job is in order over more frequent oil changing?

Anyone else’s comments would be welcome as I have read many, it’s just I’m trying to get back to discussions on maximizing engine life and am wondering who has had experiences good and bad with what. Who’s actually seen inside their engines to prove or disprove. I know there is a lot of experiences out there.
 
Registered: November 28, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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strange with what seems like so many people using used cooking oils, etc. as fuel there aren't more actual teardown reports, or factual failure reports from coking.



Hi Nuke.

I think that perhaps a logical explanation for the lack of tear down inspections is that most people burning WVO as motor fuel do it to save money and tear downs are expensive.

Others who have the capacity to do their own tear downs may prefer not to do so in order to protect their opinions from reality (no fingers pointed).
 
Registered: September 26, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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danalinscott you started this thread with ways to maximize engine life, that's where I got my original ideas of engine warm up etc. before switching to the veg tank. I am wondering about using engine oil with maybe a pancake tap at the engine oil filter to heat the veg oil rather then engine water coolant. I am gathering that some sort of heated pickup is better then running a heater coil into the whole veg tank, but I am wondering about using engine oil for heating the supply lines and maybe the filter etc. rather then radiator fluid. I would also be interested on your take of water injection reducing coke build-up. I also take it that eng oil changes are the thing, but am I to understand that if you start finding polymerization in the oil a ring job is in order over more frequent oil changing? Anyone else’s comments would be welcome as I have read many, it’s just I’m trying to get back to discussions on maximizing engine life and am wondering who has had experiences good and bad with what. Who’s actually seen inside their engines to prove or disprove. I know there is a lot of experiences out there.



Nuke.

If you hit your "enter" button twice between each thought, you can space out things a bit. It just makes things clearer and easier to read.
 
Registered: September 26, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Welder I went back and edited it.
My boss complains about that too
You’re not her R U?

The pix of the Coked Jetta looked pretty bad
but I am wondering if that might be an isolated case. I was hoping that maybe danalinscott might have some more insight as it sounds like he is in the business and might have seen some fleet tear downs.

DCS seems to be happy with his system and his logic makes sense,

but like I said I was hoping someone might have actually seen something. I understand the cost saving theme, but I am a tinkerer, not beyond pulling the head to take a look, and so was hoping some others might have as well. Let’s face it, if we’re building these systems on our own and putting them on our vehicles someone might have an actual idea of what’s really going on in there over time. That Jetta is scary.
 
Registered: November 28, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Nuke, Sweden here.
I was in the very same situation myself a couple of years ago. I saw bad picks, scary picks, and read a lot of treads which confused me a lot. But I decided to try. We have an Italian Fiat Ducato, cargo van/RV, 1994 model, only 2,5 liters engine, and the engine was pretty new, only 60000 km on the road.

I converted this car with heated tank, 5 gallon only, heated filter and FPHE and Pollak valves.

Until today we have driven around 30000 km on veg oil, WVO, cleaned by a centrifuge.

Yesterday I removed one injection nozzle, took a photo and sent to Fiat. Told them the car was totally run 94000 km, and asked thir opinion about the nozzle. I got positive answer back, it looked quite good.

Under the last 2,5 years, I have spent more time than nesceccary to listen for abnormal sound, lack of power, check of motor oil etc. etc. and until today, nothing has happend! What a waste of energy.

The car runs good still, and we are perfectly happy with this cheap fuel of ours.

So my worries has minimized, and when I get worried, I just remind myself, that if something shold go wrong, it should have done by now.

In Germay, there are thousands and thousands of cars running on SVO. It is possible to fill you car with SVO almost on same numbers of filling stationes as there is for diesel.

We visited Berlin 2 months ago, running on WVO. A trip af about 2000 km.
When I mentioned SVO for the mangager, she belived I wanted to know the nearest filling staion.

So if you convert you car well, use a PTC-heater, heat the oil all way from the thank to the IP, and keep the heat of oil over 140 F, best is 160 F, Start engine on diesel, flush and stop on diesel, it should work well for years.

I have a guy here with an old Mercedes 300 D, he runs his car on hydraulik oil. Heated of course. Works well. Cost: 0,00 $ per mile.

Good luck with you.
 
Location: Sweden | Registered: February 07, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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and about that Jetta thing,I still say it was overheated someplace along the line,(no body will admit). I have overhauled,rebilt, remanned, reconditoned, remanufactured so many diesels in the last 30yrs, at least 1000 units.
it was overheated, thats it! diesels run the best HOT until they melt! Thx Ron
 
Location: texas | Registered: February 03, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
<DCS>
posted
quote:
Originally posted by Nuke:
DCS I read your 23 April 07 post about your simple washer system. Sounds like you and I are looking for the same thing. Running 100% veg oil and reducing the possibility of the coking. Saw some really ugly pix of coked wvo engine, coked wvo jetta
Anyway hoping you and others may have some educated insight specifically dealing with water injection reducing coking.


That thread on the TDI forums drives me nuts because it is the one thread everyone bases their fear of coking on even though it is completely flawed. That problems with that car were nothing at all to do with veg and I think that is explained 15 pages down the track but few people ever seem to get that far and never seem to get past the incorrect assumption that Veg caused that guys problems.

It's been about 18 months since I installed my Water injection system and the car is just not the same one I installed it on. The performance must be double what I started with and it starts easier, runs smoother and is just nicer to drive. No, I don't believe it gets better fuel economy. There is no logical reason to explain why WI would give that effect anyway.

I think the reason for the dramatic improvement is that there was some sort of coking or deposits in the engine when i got it event though it had only ever been run on dino. The car doesn't go any better than the majority of similar vehicles I have driven, it just isn't so pathetically woeful like it used to be anymore!

I still more than ever believe coking is a greatly over hyped problem but I have found an example of it first hand. ( finally!!)
It was on a very well converted merc and I helped change the engine and saw the damage to the old one. I conversation with the owner, he felt the cause was changing over to oil too early, before the engine had fully warmed up.

When the original engine was replaced, he fitted a temp gauge before the IP and realised that it took much longer to get the oil up to temp than what he had been previously changing over at. I think the problem with the engine coking was really as simple as that.

Myself, I have been regularly doing a bunch of things that also should have caused problems by now. Cold starts on 100% oil, improper and non existent purges etc. I have now been doing this long enough that some decline in performance should have been noticeable. Instead, the engine runs magnitudes better than when I first got it. I have seen it written that the damage never shows itself until it is too late but that was not at all what my friend experienced and it makes no logical sense to me that a damaged or coked engine would not show some decline in performance.

I have been more diligent in ensuring my smaller than ideal water tank is topped up at all times and have recently been regularly been running ethanol or Methanol in the WI system. This seems to have a positive effect even when the mix has been replaced with plain water. gradually though the performance does taper off but is restored by another batch of the mix.
Possibly I have bad injectors that cause some buildup in the engine but the WI cures that over and over again.

The time and miles I have now been running the WI have convinced me beyond all possible doubt that the WI works very well in preventing damaging buildup in veg fueled engines and has the potential to restore lost power and remove deposits from both dino and veg residues.

I don't believe it can fix mechanical problems or counteract damage as that makes no sense but the effect of it removing deposits and keeping them from forming and prolonging engine life when less than ideal veg fueled driving habits are practiced is something I have no doubts at all over.

Water Injection seems very rarely used in this game but given the minimal cost and the potential problems it could prevent, I'm surprised more people are not trying it. My system is dirt cheap and ridiculously simple and it seems to me that people are readily willing to try a lot more far fetched things in search of Holy grails. WI systems don't need to be expensive commercial high end ones, I use a washer bottle squirting through a plastic garden sprayer nozzle but the bottom line is, it works and works dam well IMHO.
 
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DCS, thanks for your sane and informative post.

I agree with your observations both in principle and in practice.

I have an 83 240D that I have put almost 100,000 Miles on WVO in the past 3 years. About 80,000 of those miles were on a single tank with injector heaters and FPHE.

I would leave the injectors heaters on for 5-10 minutes before cold starts whenever possible. I'm in North Florida, so we don't get very low temps, but I did have to cold start it on WVO at near or below freezing a number of times.

At about 80,000 miles I converted it to 2 tank. After a proper purge it cold starts right away, even after 100,000 on WVO.

However, I have not done a before and after compression test, or pulled the head, so this is anecdotal evidence. But, it's a cheap daily driver that that is still running fine after 100k miles, so I don't care. I bought the car to get around, and it does that so I'm happy with that.

I installed my WI system after about 50k WVO miles, and it definately improved performance (is that an oxymoron on a 240D?Smile ). Smoother idle, more power, smoother overall.

For anyone with a normally aspirated W123 mercedes, a WI 'system' is as simple as pie, if you want to do it simply (and don't mind not having water for your windscreen washer).

Simply put a misting nozzle in the top center of the air intake housing and attach it to the output of the windscreen washer pump. That's what I did. Now when I want WI I push the wiper button and it injects. Yes, your wipers run without water on the windshield, but I can live with that for such a simple system.

Anyway, hope that's not too OT. Bottom line is don't get scared by the one TDI.

DCS, could you save us all 15 pages of reading and give a bottom line reason why the TDI had problems?


Paul

1983 Mercedes 240D Single tank WVO - FPHE, Injector Line heaters, aux fuel pump. Water/Methanol Injection. Frantz bypass oil filter. - North Florida
 
Location: Fernandina Beach, Florida | Registered: March 29, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post



<DCS>
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Paul,

If your 240 is an auto, tap into the kickdown switch under the throttle pedal. Wire that to your washer pump and it will activate automatically whenever you put your foot flat to the floor and activate the auto kickdown. I imagine your drive a 240 a lot at full throttle. Every 300D owner I know does and I think you are at a significant performance disadvantage to us!

Now without wanting to start an off topic argument over minor technical points, basically the problem with the TDI was caused by a known and significant problem they have with the EGR valve. This allows exhaust gas back into the inlet side of the engine and I believe this also carries with the exhaust soot, and an amount of engine oil which causes the coking on the INLET valves of those engines. There are many accounts of these engines coking up in exactly the same way on regular Diesel and some experienced owners pull the heads every so many miles and decoke them.
Other knowledgeable people block off the EGR valve ( which is an anti pollution devise) all together and the problem goes away.

Also that engine was set up with performance mods which usually entail over fueling to some degree on a diesel and this can also add to coking problems through the left over oil not being burnt properly and then charring in the cylinders.
To blame ( or at least create the distinct impression amongst a lot of people) that WVO was responsible for the problems the engine experienced is about as logical as blaming WVO as the cause of flat tyres!

I think there were definite and a number of Highly likely causes for the troubles encountered with that vehicle ( not the least, incompetent people working on it) and WVO was about the least likely thing to have caused any of them.

I had a long going argument on these board some time ago where I stated that coking was completely and totally overstated as a danger of WVO use in comparison to the evidence of it actually occurring in the real world.
I asked for evidence in the face of some people basically calling me everything under the sun for saying that and continuing to create the impression that it was more of a case of when rather than if an engine would befall this fate.

That one clearly flawed account of the TDI was the thing anyone could point to on the entire web to support the coking fear mongering that appeared to be reaching levels of paranoia.

Looking back, my questioning the coking alarmist theories must have been noticed by an amount of people because I see no where near the endless doomsday warnings that I used to. Apart from one first hand instance, I'm still to see any evidence of coking in any way being the problem some haunting these board made it out to be.

Since I questioned the frequency of coking in the real world, I have come across a case of coking first hand which happened to a veg user I know personally. Naturally I was very interested in this and in speaking with the owner and subsequent analysis of the problem, we found it highly likely to have been caused by him switching over to oil far too early before the engine had properly warmed up. As this vehicle was a daily driver, after 18months of this treatment the engine suffered stuck rings from coking and 3 of the 5 cylinders had broken rings. How they escaped to the top of the piston without leaving a mark in the bore in the close tolerances between piston and cylinder wall is a question that remains unanswered to all that saw and helped tear down the engine.

If the WI was not removing deposits from my own engine and keeping it clean, I have no fear it would have surely suffered a similar fate by now. By trusting in the WI, there are a lot of veg rules I break almost every day that should have given me problems in the 45,000Km I have now run on veg.
Instead, my car continues to run far and away better than when I got it and I have made no changes or modifications to the engine other than the WI that could even begin to account for this.

Many people have their "Pet" bit of advise and wisdom that they try to impart to all and sundry and WI is mine. Very few people seem to take much notice or give WI a try but all that do report the same thing.

I'm just waiting for the day and feel confident that in the future, people will discover WI as a "miracle" preventative and somewhat of a cure for one of the big problems veg oil users face and I'll be able to sit back and say " See this thread where I said that 10 years ago? I told you so! " Big Grin
 
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Hmmm, I didn't think of that - the kick down switch. Or maybe I did and my kickdown is broken. I'll check it out, thanks for the tip.

I see you're in Sydney. My wife and I were just in sydney a few weeks ago. Saw the WVO renderers were quite popular there. And no 92 300Ds! Dissapointing! Frown


Paul

1983 Mercedes 240D Single tank WVO - FPHE, Injector Line heaters, aux fuel pump. Water/Methanol Injection. Frantz bypass oil filter. - North Florida
 
Location: Fernandina Beach, Florida | Registered: March 29, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
<DCS>
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The kickdown switch on my car was detached from the plug when I got the car. the week I drove it before I worked that out was one of the scariest i have every driven on the road. the thing was so slow it was absoloutley dangerous.

There are quite a few collectors here, a couple of major ones and a splattering of smaller ones that seem only to work local areas. They are all thieving, lying, cheating cowboys like it seems the majority are the world over.

Many people see a collectors drum and assume the place is " Taken" the the oil is unavailable. I see it as a marker of a decent supply and when I go in and ask for it, I get the nod more than enough times to make it well worth my while.

How much meth do you put in your WI system and how often do you use it?
 
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Regarding my use of the WI system....

I'm fairly lose on it its use. (is that a Dr Suess?). I use it whenever I remember, which is stimulated by the car not running like I think it should. I probably use a washer full (1/2 gallon?) roughly every gas tank (~450 miles).

Regarding the Methanol. As far as my research and experience shows, methanol is only useful up to 50% and is only a performance enhancement. Water is what cleans cylinders, not methanol.

So I use recovered methanol from my biodiesel if it is not clear, ie not good quality. Otherwise I just use plain filtered water. I've probably used more plain water than meth/water mix.

It's' a daily driver that has unknown miles on it (bought it second/third/who knows hand with a euro KM replacement instrument cluster and I've put 100,000 WVO miles on it, and it only cost me $740), so as long as it starts up on the second or so compression stroke I'm not going to worry about it.


Paul

1983 Mercedes 240D Single tank WVO - FPHE, Injector Line heaters, aux fuel pump. Water/Methanol Injection. Frantz bypass oil filter. - North Florida
 
Location: Fernandina Beach, Florida | Registered: March 29, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
<DCS>
posted
People that ask me about putting WI on their cars always ask about " what if I forget to top it up?" like the car will suddenly stop. As I point out, their cars are running along now having never had WI fitted so at worst, they will run no different to what they are now and WI can only improve the way they go, not reduce performance.

I think any WI application is helpful, even 1/2 gal per tank. It has removed that much gunk from the engine that would have still been there without it, so that is still a very positive and worthwhile thing to me.

I was using the meth at up to 50% but now that seems a bit too much and the engine nails a bit on it. I have backed it down to 40% and it seems to go well there with no incorrect audible noises emanating.

I have come to think that the meth does indeed help the cleaning process although I didn't initially. I can give a reason as to what I think it does other than advance the timing and possibly assist in creating a cleaner burn but I have noticed that after I refill the WI with a tank of plain water after a tank of meth mix, it seems to still go better than when there was just a tank of water previously.
Obviously any remaining meth mix would be too weak after refilling on plain water so I have come to think that the meth gives some extra benefit I haven't worked out yet.

I have thought of recovering the meth from the glyc my Bio making friend has but seeing the efforts he has gone to in recovering the meth with such minimal returns, like him, I figure it is no more costly just to buy the stuff and save all the hassle Smile .
 
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I've read that any alcohol will act the same as methanol, and that wood alcohol (available at home depot etc) will have the same effect as methanol, and is less toxic.

I'm not sure if it's called wood alcohol, or denatured alcohol, but it is something like that. In South Africa they called it methylated spirits. Basically, any alcohol does the job as it burns fast and easily.

WI with alcohol was first used in WW2 fighter planes as a performance enhancement, so it's performance benefits are not in doubt. However, anyone who has information about it's use as a detergent/cleaner for carbon deposits please feel free to enlighten us. Thanks.


Paul

1983 Mercedes 240D Single tank WVO - FPHE, Injector Line heaters, aux fuel pump. Water/Methanol Injection. Frantz bypass oil filter. - North Florida
 
Location: Fernandina Beach, Florida | Registered: March 29, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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quote:
Originally posted by Paul Drayton:
I've read that any alcohol will act the same as methanol, and that wood alcohol will have the same effect as methanol, and is less toxic.
I'm not sure if it's called wood alcohol, or denatured alcohol


Hi Paul,

Wood alcohol was the common name for methanol, (like grain alcohol is a common name for ethanol), since it use to be made by burning wood without oxygen. It is very toxic, and used to "denature", or poison, ethanol making it undrinkable and selling ethanol as denatured alcohol.

Both have solvent properties.

Sam


2002 F250 Vegistroke now with the new V3 module!
 
Location: Wyoming | Registered: July 25, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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OK,
Most of these have been discussed before..but.

People tend to uase coolant because that is where the most easily used engine heat is available from. It is just simpler, cheaper, and easier. And of course you do not run the risk of losing lube oil if a leak is sprung. Coolant also circulates easier when cold. A "pancake tap" a the (lube) oil filtse is probably not going to provide as much heat as quickly, efficiently, or cheaply as simply tapping into the coolant system.

A heated fuel pickup is beter mainly because it concentrates the heat better than a tank heating coil does. And since heat is the biggest factor in creating polymerization minimising the heat going into a VO fuel tank helps minimise the possibiliy of VO polymerization.

My opinion of water injection is that it may reduce coking above the piston but not in the grooves or on the lands.

If you find that you have slightly polymerized lube oil you need to perform a compression test to determine if ita ring job is required or if you can simply change your start up/shut down routine to avoid vo laden blowby.

The first formal US research on VO fuel use ended due to ring coking. Several other follow up studies determined that VO was not a viable diesel fuel substitute due to its' tendency to coke rings. Later researchers discovered that ring coking could be minimized by bringng the engine up to full operating temp BEFORE inroducing VO fuel into the engine. Mny have discovered that if you do not intend to obtain full engine life from a diesel engine ring/land/groove coking is not a major problem. Those that hope to avoid early engine failure tend to monitor ring/land/groove coking to determine when it is becomming critical.


There are other factors that can accellerate ring/land/groove coking other than introducing vo fuel to a cool engine. Avoiding long idle periods and making certain that fuel injectors are properly functioning are just two. If someone does not want to "believe" in ring/land/groove coking that is perfectly OK with me. But encouraging others to ignore this well established and easily avoided problem is not. I too do not wish to re-hash this discussion yet again. We can link to that earlier discussions on ring coking I suppose if anyone really wants to dredge it up. If I recall correctly the argument then was that no one example of VO induced ring coking or picture of a single coked piston could be produced.
Since both were produced I thought this discussion had been concluded....

quote:
Originally posted by Nuke:
danalinscott you started this thread with ways to maximize engine life, that's where I got my original ideas of engine warm up etc. before switching to the veg tank.

I am wondering about using engine oil with maybe a pancake tap at the engine oil filter to heat the veg oil rather then engine water coolant. Pros or cons one over the other?

I am gathering that some sort of heated pickup is better then running a heater coil into the whole veg tank, but I am wondering about using engine oil for heating the supply lines and maybe the filter etc. rather then radiator fluid. I thought I read in one of these posts hotter is better, then I thought I read someone else say cooler is better.

I would also be interested on your take of water injection reducing coke build-up.

I also take it that eng oil changes are the thing, but am I to understand that if you start finding polymerization in the oil a ring job is in order over more frequent oil changing?

Anyone else’s comments would be welcome as I have read many, it’s just I’m trying to get back to discussions on maximizing engine life and am wondering who has had experiences good and bad with what. Who’s actually seen inside their engines to prove or disprove. I know there is a lot of experiences out there.
 
Location: Central MN..Brrrrrr! | Registered: November 06, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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