I have a confession to make, for the last 12 months I have been driving a PETROL car! Its not that I dont make biodiesel any more, I do a batch every 2 weeks just as before. The reason is that it has become far too valuable to burn as motor fuel.
About 2 years ago , just around the time I stopped posting regularly on this forum I got involved with a company who wanted to develop a fully certified biodegradable chainsaw oil from raw glycerol. Two years later they now have a world patent on the formulation and a thriving market for their product. Since then I have been involved in projects to develop several other commercial liquid lubricants, greases, surfactants , degreasers , release agents and other products from vegetable oil, animal fats, esters , ffas and glycerol.
There is a booming demand for new products that are non toxic, non carcinogenic, and biodegradable and the traditional lubricant / additive industry is being very slow to get on board. Anyone who has the basic skills to make a batch of biodiesel is in a position to set up a small business producing this type of product.
I now sell all of my output as three different products at a minimum price of €6 per litre. ( I think that translates into $24.16 per US gallon)
The demand is there, the raw materials are available and cheap and the chemistry is not rocket science. Im happy to help anyone develop their ideas into a workable product, either here publicly on the forum or privately if they prefer.
Write a how to guide in PDF and offer it for a few quid via email. The soap making guide I did is helping people on 5 continents turn their glycerine overstock into exceptional soap products.
That's an excellent commercial venture, good on ya ! You're lucky the regulatory process where you are makes it possible. There's a big market that would buy pet-safe antifreeze and a lot of underutilized glycerol, and someone was bound to connect the dots and make it pay.
I drive a petrol car too. When temperatures are below freezing and trips are relatively short, then the Petrol injection 1.6 L DOHC 16 Valve Inline-4 AWD SUV w/ half the weight and displacement makes more sense than the diesel truck, and it gets better $/km fuel economy.
Your entreprenurial spirit is showing through again John. Thank you for sharing that with us.
Hi IMB, welcome back to the forum!
Yes, a lot of people suddenly decided that saving the world was not quite so important once the price of petroleum fell.
It does appear that many people have stopped using biodiesel.
So what you are saying is that now, instead of selling it as biodiesel you are calling it something else such as 2 stroke engine oil or chainsaw bar oil and selling it for a big price.
How big of a demand?
You seem to only be making a couple hundred litres of biodiesel every two weeks.
I would assume if there was any bigger demand you would be making more batches.This message has been edited. Last edited by: Tilly,
The PDF guide is an interesting idea and Ill certainly consider it.thanks.
The regulations regarding safety, labelling and bioidegradability are important considerations and Europe has its fair share of them.
The approach we take here is to develop the product first, then conduct field tests. For instance we had a large forestry contractor run a couple of of their harvesting machines on our chain oil for a month, we then stripped the chain bars and checked for wear. We also set up an electric chainsaw in a frame with temperature sensors attached to it and were able to compare existing chain oil to ours. We were then able to take the developed product and the field test results to a government funding agency who agreed to pay for all of the certification and regulatory tests. If you approach these agencies with a half developed idea you have no chance.
My work for clients has been in the forestry, construction and agricultural industries. My own much smaller scale products are in furniture finishing and tool sharpening . I deal directly with my customers, avoiding retail sales which reduces the regulatory burden considerably.
Almost every industry is looking for greener, safer more biodegradable products , these dont have to be made on a large scale, at least not initially and small scale biodiesel producers are in a unique position to develop these products.
Not to mention that it would be political suicide for "them" to come after you. Headline: Government squashes green environment effort due to regulations. Of course it would take a strong social media presence as most of the MSM are toddy hacks.
A PDF file is "for educational purposes only" and not a product, thereby putting information available without having to put up gazillions in liability insurance should the actual producer mess it up. Leave a caveat.
Beyond leaving a caveat -- do your research. I certainly can't speak for Canada or Ireland. I do know just a tad about this topic in the U.S. The most recent noteworthy caselaw I recall on the matter is Winter v. Putnam (as in Putnam & Sons Publishing), but it's not an area I work in regularly and I haven't read the case since law school 12+ years ago. The very short version of the case is that Putnam distributed a book published in England about mushrooms, which had the unfortunate printing error of a couple of "switched pictures" indicating which plants were safe and which were toxic. A couple of folks gathered and ate wild mushrooms after consulting the book, and became horribly ill. We're not talking tummy aches -- I think they needed liver transplants to survive. Both the trial court and the appellate court held that there was no product liability for the ideas contained in printed material. There might be liability for defective paper or materials, but not for the thoughts and expressions, etc. More succinctly you might put it this way: the book is a product, but the ideas contained in the book are not products.
I'm half-inclined to go see if there is anything newer than this. I think there was also an older case about tool-making, but I forget its name -- similar outcome, though. If I remember right, Putnam was a 1990s case out in the Ninth Circuit.
KEEP IN MIND -- this was a case against a publisher and distributor, and not against the author. In the case of a PDF, you might be both author and publisher. There is plenty of law that authors can be liable for misrepresentations of their own products, for defamation of others, for intentionally false statements, for negligent statements resulting in personal injury, or cases where the contents are relied upon by the reader as an authoritative guide to doing some risky process, and so on.
As I began -- there's more to it than a disclaimer or a caveat, so do the homework in your home jurisdiction or hire someone who can. (As I regularly tell my clients: it's almost always cheaper to hire an attorney now in order to prevent or minimize the likelihood of a problem than to hire him later to fix one.) Pardon the thread diversion, but these are the things which I find interesting...
As a consultant Im insured in my dealings with clients but Im not sure that would cover publishing documents, Ill have to look into it.
I cant reveal details of particular products for confidentiality reasons but Id Like to present some broad product ideas.
Glycerol as a coolant / heat store. Raw glycerol acts as a very efficient form of heat storage.
I have a friend who found his oil fired underfloor heating very expensive to run We constructed a solar wall next to his house comprising a line of 28 steel oildrums painted black and connected by pipework. . the line faces south and are clad with corrugated clear plastic to the front and insulated wood to the back. The drums are filled with 50% glycerol and 50% water. They heat up each day in the sun and are then used each night to help heat the house. He has more than halved his heating bill. the base nature of the glycerol prevents the oildrums rusting and the mixture will not freeze in winter in Ireland. More concentrated mixtures may be required for colder climates.
Glycerol as a lubricant. as mentioned above a client has patented a biodegradable chainsaw made from raw glycerol with several additives. There are many applications where glycerol can be used as a lubricant.
Waste vegetable oil as a lubricant. If waste vegetable oil is filtered, deacidified and dried it can be used as the base for many lubricants. Additives to increase or decrease its viscosity, improve its temperature range and prevent oxidation are all available and can be blended to produce oils that will perform well in all but the most demanding conditions.
Biodiesel as a lubricant.
The viscosity of biodiesel is very low and so makes it suitable for products such as penetrating oils, two stroke oils etc .
Animal fats and hydrogenated products as lubricants.
Using fractional crystallization, a technique I experimented with here on this forum, I can produce waxes and greases of any hardness and viscosity. After sterilization and with additives to prevent rancidity these greases can be used in conveyor belts and machinery in food processing plants.
The list of viable and profitable products that can be produced just goes on and on.
I know for a fact that biodiesel can be turned into a penetrating oil a la WD40, and that it exceeds the performance of that popular penetrator (!), but without the noxious fumes (I have a violent reaction to WD40). I have no qualms talking about it as the folks who developed it have no interest in taking it public (don't ask me why not, I don't get it). They merely added a gas (don't know which one)to make it into an aerosol and that was it. Works just as well in a spray bottle too or some type of atomizer, or push come to shove an eyedropper. It gets the job done.
I've also used it to loosen up seized parts, like a windshield washer arm.
Hi Legal Eagle,
According to the folks at WD40, The propellant gas is CO2.
As for the value of penetrating oil, I have real doubts of their value.
On a number of occasions I have sprayed rusted stuck nuts and bolts with WD40 and allowed to sit for hours only to find that when I eventually did get the nut or bolt loose (lots of force or heat usually does the trick) there was no indication that the penetrating oil had penetrated anything further than the first tiniest bit of of outside rust scale.
WD40 was developed as a Water Displacement oil, not an oil to penetrate and loosen rust.
This is incorrect.
The Viscosity of biodiesel according to the European Din Standard is 3.5- 5 Centistokes @ 40C
The Viscosity of 2 stroke motor oil is typically between 40- 60 Centistokes @ 40C.
The viscosity of biodiesel and 2 stroke motor oil are not at all similar.This message has been edited. Last edited by: Tilly,
I have a small online business selling vintage woodworking tools
and I use biodiesel in a spray bottle all the time. Its great for loosening seized nuts and fastenings and also protecting metal surfaces from the the dreaded rust. I use it as a honing oil when sharpening chisels and plane irons and its an excellent finish for wooden tool handles.
I do sell it as a honing oil , €6 for 500ml, and customers who buy always come back for more.
There are lots of niche products that can be made from biodiesel or veg oil and additives. Like my honing oil you can start small and expand as the market grows. If you are already making biodiesel the initial investment is zero.
Well, that is interesting, thank you.
Just winding down for the holidays after a busy month. I have been commissioning a plant to produce a biolubricant product for the construction industry. The production target is 4500 litres per week so I used a second hand 1000 litre biodiesel processor as the heart of the unit.
This converts 750 litres of low grade WVO per batch and we can do two batches per day. The converted esters are then pumped into a pair of 1000 litre settling and drying tanks .
The finished methyl esters are blended with additives to adjust the viscosity, prevent oxidation and improve the surfactant quality to fit the specification and put into barrels for shipping.
This company is a licenced waste oil collector and previously sold all of its wvo to large biodiesel and rendering plants at a low market price. With this unit they will be able to increase the value of their output by a factor of several 100%.
Congratulations on moving up the value chain, John.
Biodiesel as 2-stroke oil, is it a direct replacement?
Does it need more than the normal 2-stroke oil per liter , or the same?
Does it even blend well with petrol..
(i make small batches,and use a moped to get around town)
Hi Fraggie 1975,
Over the years there have been several people who have reported replacing their 2 stroke motor oil with biodiesel.
The results have all been unsuccessful with this one being typical.
...Saw didn't actually sieze - it stopped cos a bit of piston skirt broke off and jammed the blighter."
I have no idea why someone would recommend that you could use biodiesel as the oil portion of 2 stroke fuel.
Biodiesel will blend with petrol.
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