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Mako

Biodiesel some commercial suppliers have ceased trading

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I've noticed that some biodiesel traders have closed down and it's a little easier to get used oil these days. I wonder if they ran into claim problems. I was a bit surprised when often as I passed by one of them a few years ago and they were regularly filling current or very late year models with B100. I know that the average diesel mechanic immediately blames biodiesel for any problems that may occur on a diesel and it just opens the way for them to hammer the customer with an exorbitant bill and he/she just has to suck it up because they were stupid enough to fill with bio (according to the mechanic)

Water in biodiesel or regular diesel fuel is the biggest problem followed by poorly converted biodiesel. Biodiesel is particularly susceptible to water contamination as it is used in the end process to remove soap and methanol from the fuel and I suspect this is where some suppliers may have come unstuck. Water in significant quantities can be present in clear bright fuel.

The most suitable engines for running bio are IDI (indirect injection) motors as the prechamber contains the injected fuel and keeps it from getting onto the cylinder walls. Of these the old Mercedes diesels with the inline injection pump are best and can also run well on straight (well filtered and dry) used cooking oil. VW TDI motors (pre diesel particulate filter models) are probably the best DI (direct injection) motors for bio as they have Elsbett combustion chambers which keep the injected fuel off the cylinder walls. (Oil on cylinder wall gets onto the rings and cokes up the ring and cylinder wear increases dramatically.

I've been running on my own biodiesel in at least 4 vehicles at a time since 2002 with no problems. Currently, Corsa 1.7 D (IDI), Syncro Kombi with a Toyota 3CT (IDI) two Golf TDI's and a Polo PD and no problems to report. I also run a Case Uniloader when I need it on a 50/50 blend.

Never run Lister engines on straight vegetable oil as they tend to carbon up rapidly.

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On ‎18‎/‎10‎/‎2017 at 8:49 PM, Mako said:

Never run Lister engines on straight vegetable oil as they tend to carbon up rapidly.

And you have how many Listers?  Go read the Lister forums, plenty of ways around this.  There's a guy in EL who has thousands of hours on his Lister, no carbon buildup, and he burns WMO.

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9 hours ago, dax021 said:

And you have how many Listers?  Go read the Lister forums, plenty of ways around this.  There's a guy in EL who has thousands of hours on his Lister, no carbon buildup, and he burns WMO.

I don't have any Listers (is that a requirement?) but I have run WMO but that's not what I wrote about. Are you saying one can just fill up a Lister with waste vegetable oil and run happily ever after?

My comment was IRO posts on this site where a member simply added straight vegetable oil to a Lister = unmodified Lister.

You tell of a guy in EL who's run thousands of hours on WMO. I never mentioned waste motor oil, it's a totally different fuel.  Lister engines can and are modified to run on VO by using twin tanks (VO running / Diesel start and shutdown purge) heated VO tank and heated VO fuel lines and injector line. Those are modified Listers.

I've used vegetable oil for fuel for 17 years now starting with a 300D Merc on SVO (sold after two years and biodiesel since) I read up extensively on SVO and followed a few Lister owners reports on the infopop forums where they opened their unmodified Listers at regular intervals and documented their findings. Carbon build up seemed to occur quite quickly followed by stuck rings and compression loss.

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9 minutes ago, DeepBass9 said:

Who was adding SVO to a Lister?

Flip, you want me to go back and find it .........okay but give me some time :)

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1 minute ago, Mako said:

Flip, you want me to go back and find it .........okay but give me some time :)

Well that was easy........You were DeepBass9 :) Well on a blend anyway. This led me to comment that Listers should never be run on SVO, just trying to add practical information which you appear to have been aware of anyway. As for blends in a Lister, I'm actually not sure about that either. It's about unburned droplets getting onto the cold cylinder wall and wetting the rings/ring lands where it eventually gums up and gets to look like the back and edges of a frying pan. It's the cold start and warm up period when these droplets don't burn and get onto the cold cylinder walls. Straight diesel atomises better when cold and "evaporates" off the walls/rings if it gets there, as the motor warms up.

I don't know if IDI Listers are common in SA or if most are DI but I'm referring to DI Listers (should have been clearer about that)

 

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50:50 filtered SVO and diesel actually. 

If you read about people running listers on SVO they usually start on mineral diesel until up to temperature, and then preheat the SVO before injection. Seems to work for them. Anyway, 4 nuts and the head is off the lister to decarbon.

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On my Isuzu 280TD I frequently run on 100% biodiesel bought from a factory in Stikland. Other one is in Dieprivier somewhere. They supply PnP, Woolies and a few large retailers trucks.

They do warn you though, when you start on biodiesel, to keep a new diesel filter onboard. What happens is the gunk is removed from the entire system and it all tends to clog up the filter.

After a few tanks of 100% biodiesel, the diesel filter stays as clean as with normal diesel. Sometime it needs no replacement per service.

There is another trick though .Got a big scare once. Stayed over at Matjiesfontein on the way to Jhb. Had biodiesel in and the next morning there was ice patches on the ground. Cold temps and biodiesel are not maatjies. Was a close call that day. Luckily somehow my biodiesel did not gel.

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4 hours ago, The Terrible Triplett said:

Cold temps and biodiesel are not maatjies.

You made me think of this one time I also had so much trouble with me Diesel. It becomes really hard to start some winter mornings. Went to the Karoo for a weakend and temperatures dropped to 1 Celsius those nights, man, it took minutes to get it started the next day.

I came home, very worried about 1) Suction Control Valves, or 2) injectors, as those are apparently both issues on my car, sometimes it just cannot do enough pressure for a really cold start. A new SCV valve setup pushes injection pressures up to 100mpa at start, which helps... only it's a 4k valve! Then I start wondering about the battery, since it is 4.5 years old. Stick a volt meter on it, and immediately I see two issues: 1) It pulls down to 11.5V with the glow plugs on, so clearly giving notice, and 2) when the glow plug light goes out, the plugs themselves remain on for several more seconds!

Now I've always suspected that something is wrong with the duration the light stays on. One second surely cannot be enough on a cold morning? So I tried a new trick: count to 7 and then start (I know the plugs stay on at least that long). Voila, starting problems gone. I suspect there is a temperature sensor that's gone, most likely the Engine Coolant Temperature (ECT) sensor. Can diagnose it with a scanner... told myself I'll eventually get to it... and I promise I will... some day. :-)

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Generally glow plugs stay on (tell tale light off) for some time once an engine starts to reduce emissions. VW's typically only activate glow plugs once the ambient temperatures drop below 9C but they always activate for around 2 minutes on low engine loads when starting. DI motors start more easily than IDI and normally without needing glow plug activation. 

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5 hours ago, SilverNodashi said:

how well does biodiesel work on modern diesel motors?

The injector manufacturers say YES please with car manufacturers carefully saying the political right thing: We support biodiesel but don't use it in our brand of car if you like your warranty.

My theory is that manufacturers knew there was a bunch of oaks somewhere on forums that will want to make their own diesel. ;)

So if they say yes to biodiesel and each "Jan Rap and sy maat" makes their own at home, then the issue gets very real ito the warranties on the finely tuned high performance optimal use of each liter diesel motors. 

I mean, the new motors need cleaner than clean diesel, for lower grades "dirty" diesel can clog them injectors in a heartbeat with like a R20k replacement bill for 4 injectors. Happened to a family member. Isuzu, R1.5k for 4 injectors, with labor, and you can use any diesel grade, even 100% bio when you want if you want.

However, if biodiesel was part and parcel of diesel supplied by the fuel companies to all garages, like SA said they would do a 2% blend, working towards 20%, then there would not have been any concerns from them manufacturers.

--- RANT ----
But apparently, I am told, the used oil we have in spades in SA is being sold to overseas buyers via our our nefarious government puppets, so we cannot convert and add it to our fuels and to buy it back is too expensive, so no % mix in our near futures. Probably the US of A behind it, for they will lose on their petrol dollar scheme.

Same with like growing hemp. We can grow hemp in SA for uses like fuel, building materials and clothes ... but that is also a big no-no. People will smoke-it (Why not? Big pharma looses!) and the ever hovering Petro Dollars scheme ... for farmers can "grow" biodiesel in extreme environements if the want to, sorry, are allowed to.
--- RANT END ----

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IMO 20% bio blend can be used in any diesel. In fact it's an excellent lubricity additive for low sulphur diesel. Common rail diesels have exceptionally high injector tip temperatures and there is a good chance of coking / polymerization in the injector leading to failure if percentages higher than 50/50 are used. In other vehicles post injection to clean diesel particulate filters restricts the use of higher bio percentages. (Late injection [Piston low down in the bore] of low volatility bio gets onto the cylinder walls and finds its way into the crankcase oil)

Water in bio is the biggest killer of injector pumps and injectors. Crystal clear bio can contain damaging amounts of water.

Used oil is illegally "polished" and sold into poor communities for cooking purposes in huge quantities. This product is carcinogenic. It's also commonly used to make paint and varnish.

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