Looking for a small diesel generator about 6000w and want to use my biodiesel. There are many units out there some relatively inexpensive. (probably Chinese manufacture). They claim to be fuel injected. On the few where I have been able to down load a manual, the pressure pump and high pressure line appear to be compatible with bio. Don't know about the injector but assume it is also chemically compatible.
Called one supplier and asked about using bio and they said NO. Actually not sure they understood the difference between biodiesel and wvo. Another call to a seller of a variety of gen sets said they will all run on biodiesel. He said he knew of customers doing it but would not give out any contact info. (understandably.)
Does anyone on this board have any experience with using bio in a small diesel engine?
At one stage Kubota's "triple vortex" engine was proved to be incompatible with BD.
"At one stage Kubota's "triple vortex" engine was proved to be incompatible with BD."
The Kubota we had on the farm choked on any more than 5% BD. POS IMO.
Has that situation changed? I am trying to determine if the issue is material compatibility (hoses can be changed for example) or a combustion issue with biodiesel.
I ran a 6kva chinese di genny for 2 years on b100 until the rings went (I think) unlikely that it was the bio that caused the problem. Never had the mental energy to strip it and find out.
The " triple vortex" engine is set to California emissions specs and as such will not tolerate more than 5% BD under load. They HAD a perfectly good 3 cylinder engine that ran just fine on B100 and just HAD to screw it up. It's the engine, not the accessories. Kubota wanted to make sure we were forever tethered to Big Oil. Look at CASE tractors, they are more Biodiesel friendly.
Interesting thread. I'm generally a fan of Kubota products -- I have a few, and by and large I'm pretty happy with them.
I had a homebuilt generator set that used a Kubota engine I bought used -- believe it was a V1405, little four-cylinder naturally aspirated unit. It ran fine when I bought it. I built it onto a small trailer and adapted a 20kw ST style generator head to it with a big lovejoy and a custom flywheel plate on the engine side. It continued to run fine and make reliable power.
The entire point of that set was to experiment with WVO, which I have done successfully in other scenarios, including a '98 Mercedes back in the day. So I built the veg oil tank and the valves (manual) and lines for a dual-fuel system. The idea was just like a WVO car -- start and stop on diesel, but burn heated WVO for long periods in between. My oil was pristine, clean and water free.
All I can tell you is that engine really didn't seem to like WVO, at all. It worked for a bit, but the engine never seemed as happy. It appeared (or sounded) to struggle a little more when load got heavy, sometimes dipping voltage more than I would like on my equipment, etc. Sure, it could be entirely coincidental, or it could be related to the use of the alternative fuel. I'm not ashamed to admit it -- ultimately, that engine went kaput. One day the 240v air compressor cycled on and brought the generator down for the last time -- the electrical startup demand did it in.
The part that bugs me is that I still don't really know why, and though I've only spent a limited time tinkering with it, I cannot get it to work again. I've torn it completely down and put it back together. I've pop-tested all four injectors and they are fine. I replaced the cylinder head gasket with a new OEM unit. I've checked cylinder compressions and they were fine. A local Kubota dealer mechanic confirmed that timing on the fuel pump looks right. For rebuild and test purposes I have removed the air intake/filter and muffler altogether. Pistons and rods, camshaft, valvetrain -- all look just fine. When I activate the starter with the injector lines disconnected from the injectors, I've got strong fuel pulses just like I should. The only things that engine needs to run are fuel, air, and compression, and it sure looks like I've got all three. But that engine will NOT start, even on straight D2 diesel. Out of desperation and facing failure, I've even tried starting ether sprayed directly into the intake manifold, without success. If I crank the starter long enough -- like 30+ seconds -- I get just a little smoke, and that's it.
To tell the truth I got bored of tinkering with it and have a replacement engine sitting out in the barn waiting for me to have time to mount up the generator head. But in the back of my mind, I've scratched my head a lot about what's wrong with that Kubota unit. I'm not a mechanic, but these are pretty simple devices. I suppose it's possible that the injection pump isn't reaching pop pressure, but it's mechanically driven -- and if that pump has an internal problem, a new pump far exceeds the value of the old engine, and it's thereby not worth repairing. One of these days I guess I'll sell it for scrap or a boat anchor!
As a result of this learning experience, I will say that I only burn straight D2 in my remaining Kubota engines -- whether out of paranoia or wisdom I can't say!
I run B100 in two kubota engines in lawnmowers, both are indirect injection. A 3 cylinder 1.8 litre and a 2.0 litre 4 cylinder.
Both (I'm happy to say) have been fine for many years.
We had a small tractor that also ran perfectly on B100. That is not the issue, as many of the Kybota tractors do run well on it. The issue is with their "upgraded" triple vortex engine. So, if you plan on getting a Kubota anything be sure it does NOT have this engine if you plan on running Bover5% in it.
Listers love SVO- presume they would take B100 though it would attack rubber and strip paint~
Just picked up a Volvo MD 1B - seems ideal for SVO:
Single cylinder Detroit 71 series engine- 2 stroke:
Forget the B100 except for starting below zero:
Run the thing on old gear oil, rancid margarine or what have you
This is an interesting thread.
”At one stage Kubota's "triple vortex" engine was proved to be incompatible with BD...The Kubota we had on the farm choked on any more than 5% BD. POS IMO...The " triple vortex" engine is set to California emissions specs and as such will not tolerate more than 5% BD under load.”
I have found some information about the triple vortex engine and apparently it is an IDI diesel.
I am curious who proved the Kubota design is incompatible with BD and in particular what the incompatibility problem was.
What is the difference between "California Spec" and the rest of the USA Spec
I also wonder how setting the Kubota to California emission specs do not allow the Kobota engine to operate properly on biodiesel while at the same time other diesel engines set up to California spec seem to run fine on biodiesel.
Something does not add up here.
"Investigations of a Fatty Acid Methyl Ester from Poultry Fat in a Triple Vortex Separate Combustion Chamber Diesel Engine Stage One-Combustion Investigations
"The authors investigated the injection and combustion of poultry fat FAME 20-50% by weight in diesel no. 2 mixtures... The new fuel containing up to 50% poultry fat FAME by weight in diesel fuel (B-50) has been injected by a piston-plunger type pump injection system... B-50 had a good ignition in an indirect injection; 77 mm separate three vortex combustion chamber engine, with a high compression ratio (23.5)... The engine investigation demonstrated that up to 50% poultry fat FAME by weight in diesel can be injected and burnt in a small diesel engine, while maintaining the overall efficiency performance."
I've been running my 12 hp 2 cylinder air cooled Petter coupled to a 5 Kw gen on fuels ranging from straight veg (in summer) to wild hydrocarbon mixture pumped from the bilge of a tugboat/
The unit reliably produces electricity though I don't much like it... 3600 rpm is a bit frantic for my taste, and the 24 volt starter it came with is odd... and there could be a smaller motor driving the generator- but it will give me 5 KW hrs for around 3 litres -
Look forward to getting the little Volvo MD 1B going !
Sidewinder tug bilge fluid is a mixture of spilled or leaked hydraulic oil, new and used engine & gear oil and diesel.
Listeroids are available Brand New!
Why dick around~
On the farm we had a perfectly good 2 cyl Kubota that ran like a top on B100. Then it got swapped for a new tractor, a Triple Vortex engine. No sooner had we filled it with B100 and put it under load it started chocking and spewing blue smoke and lost power.
So off to the Kobota dealer it went. It was subsequently put on a Dyno and tested under load with various biodiesel blends, and the result was as stated, B5 was about all it would take. Works great on dino, but that wasn't exactly the point.
IMO, Kubota made a better mouse trap and it ended up letting the mice get away. The older 3 cyl non tri vortex engines run absolutely fantastic on B100; the new ones are POS if B100 is the goal.
They are also selling these tri vortex engines for marine applications, but if some environmentally conscious individual tries to use B100 in a boat so equipped he/she is in for a nasty surprise.
Maybe our experience is a one off, but I don't think so.
Has anyone tried running a lister lt1 on B100 ?
My Kabota 3 cylinder 23HP engine (BX25) has close to 600 hours on B100 with no issue.
The fuel lines all had to be replaced from the B100 eating them and the fuel pump took a crap but that likely had nothing to do with bio.
Simple schematic for a pump and heater control with a high limit
Sensor for the biodiesel/glycerin layer
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