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Does anybody use some compressed air with methanol recovery?
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I was thinking about using compressed air to stir glycerin and move the vapor. Is allowing air in the reactor creating a dangerous condition?
 
Location: western new york | Registered: November 19, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I use a small compressor all the time during methanol recovery. I don't think its an issue.
the compressor is a harbor freight 1/8 hp air brush compressor.

-dkenny


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Location: RTP, North Carolina | Registered: December 15, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I use a small compressor all the time during methanol recovery. I don't think its an issue.
the compressor is a harbor freight 1/8 hp air brush compressor

Is it to move the vapor?
 
Location: western new york | Registered: November 19, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I use a refrigerator compressor to blow bubbles into the heated glycerin. It moves the methanol vapor faster into the fractioning column and into the condenser.

pidsmb


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Location: Philippines | Registered: October 17, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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heatbeater
-ya short bursts of air will move the methanol out faster, watch your head temp though, it can rise quickly if you inject air. Also, this will cause the byproduct to foam, so don't fill the tank too much or you will end up with brown methanol. Tom


" I don't know what I don't know until I know"
1994 GMC 6.5 Tubo 2005 Dodge ram 3500, 3 VW's 2000, 2002, 2005.
 
Location: Manitoba Canada | Registered: March 24, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by heatbeater:
I was thinking about using compressed air to stir glycerin and move the vapor. Is allowing air in the reactor creating a dangerous condition?

Introducing air (or any other gas) will assist in removing methanol (vapor) - its standard practise in the chemical industry it affects the equilibrium in favor of producing more vapor.

On the downside you are adding air to a flammable vapor, possibly bringing it into its flammability range - be careful (NB that doesn't mean don't do it, just be careful OK).

-Paul
 
Location: Leeds | Registered: January 31, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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Originally posted by Biotom:
heatbeater
-ya short bursts of air will move the methanol out faster, watch your head temp though, it can rise quickly if you inject air. Also, this will cause the byproduct to foam, so don't fill the tank too much or you will end up with brown methanol. Tom


Those raschig rings you got from me will cure the brown methanol. Just dump them out of the column and rinse them off every few loads.

Norman
 
Location: Lincoln, NE | Registered: April 10, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We use air on our processors. It greatly reduces the condencing time. As long as the air bubbles are above the heating elements its ok. otherwise im thinking you risk burning up your element faster or possible ignition of methanol vapor.


www.turnerbiodiesel.com
www.turnerindustriesinc.com
Metal Fabrication and BioDiesel Products. Dry Wash Towers,Processors,Home Heating,Centrifuges,Steel Drum Cone
 
Location: Chippewa Falls WI | Registered: March 24, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I really don't have other way to induce air except from the bottom . I would use a slow trickle of air but it would be below the heating element which could be risky?
 
Location: western new york | Registered: November 19, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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heatbeater
-are you heating this in your processor, if so, run the pump during demeth and add air to the headspace only to help carry the vapours out. Tom


" I don't know what I don't know until I know"
1994 GMC 6.5 Tubo 2005 Dodge ram 3500, 3 VW's 2000, 2002, 2005.
 
Location: Manitoba Canada | Registered: March 24, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Tom, yes it's in my bio processor, to demeth KOH glycerin and maybe bio before water washing. My processor can get my wvo up to 220F when I dewater with the lid removed. I by pass the thermostat I installed that against the side of the drum. You recommend that I circulate the glycerin with the pump? The thought of vaporizing methanol seems scary ,but other brewers are doing it without any problems. I would be inducing the air below the element which Turner said could pose some problems.
 
Location: western new york | Registered: November 19, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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our processor uses a bubbler that only bubbles when the vacuum is running for demething. We welded in a 1/2" pipe that goes to the bottom of the tank. There is a check valve in line to keep it from blowing glycerin all over the place if you forget to shut any valves. Our tank is emptied with air pressure. I don't know how this would affect the heat elements, our system is hot water.

another thing you may try, is pull a vaccum on the system (vacuum demething). Shut down the current to the heaters, then open your drain, and let a big shot of air get sucked in. It will stir things up quite a bit. You could then turn the heaters back on and continue demthing. You do have to have a good vacuum on the tank when doing this, or you just pour glycerin on the floor.

I don't know what we are doing right, but our methanol is never brown, and has never tested lower than 98.5%. Usually, it is above 99%, and I have stopped checking purity. we don't really have a reflux column. our glycerin tank is a 250 gallon propane tank, we never put more than 180 gallons in it. I'm guessing the head space takes the place of a reflux column. It does seem to take forever to demeth that much glycerin though we run about 36 hours. Once, I ran it 48 hours, and the naoh glycerin set up in the bottom of the tank. It took about 80 psi of air to get things moving.


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Location: morgantown wv | Registered: June 18, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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Heatbeater
what kind of processor do you have. Is it steel or plastic. If its steel just drill a hole and insert a pipe with the end welded and .125 holes drilled in the top. A good 12 inch pipe will do. weld it in. attach an air fitting and shutoff valve. make sure its all above the heating element. We only use 1-2 psi and found it almost cuts the recovery time in half. Crystal clear methanol everytime. Please do not inject air under elements unless there off. Some say its ok but it just dont seem right to me.


www.turnerbiodiesel.com
www.turnerindustriesinc.com
Metal Fabrication and BioDiesel Products. Dry Wash Towers,Processors,Home Heating,Centrifuges,Steel Drum Cone
 
Location: Chippewa Falls WI | Registered: March 24, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I don't use air, but I would rather use compressed nitrogen or argon, then add oxygen to vaporized methanol.
I just let mine run longer for now.
 
Location: Western NY | Registered: September 16, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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what kind of processor do you have. Is it steel or plastic

Mine is a steel drum with a cone bottom. There is a thermometer port welded 10 inches above the element ,which I could use to inject air in . I think its 3/8 NPT so I could thread a length of pipe and an air coupler fitting to it. I think it would be OK as long as its covered with at least 6-8 inches of glycerin. To inject air directly into the methanol vapor might be riskly ,I don't know? The air would help move the vapor ,but can I still pump from the bottom to the top using the circulation pump?
 
Location: western new york | Registered: November 19, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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heatbeater
-circulating will also force the methanol out of the mix. much the same way water is forced out when circulating the wvo to dry it. the compressed air will force the methanol vapour out of the reactor, I'd use both. Tom


" I don't know what I don't know until I know"
1994 GMC 6.5 Tubo 2005 Dodge ram 3500, 3 VW's 2000, 2002, 2005.
 
Location: Manitoba Canada | Registered: March 24, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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It looks like I'll have to give it a try. I don't have anything to regulate the element and would let it run steady until the methanol flow stops.
 
Location: western new york | Registered: November 19, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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