User avatar
Wennfred
Posts: 383
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2013 3:47 am
Delivery Date: 24 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 000660
Location: San Diego, CA (Imperial Beach)

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?

Sat Nov 16, 2013 4:06 pm

Good read on a test run from San Diego to Vegas using E85 and then Gas.

http://www.edmunds.com/fuel-economy/e85 ... -test.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


Fred
MFG: FEB 2011, Red Recd 08/10/13 @ 19600 Miles
"Eco Mode" only. 06/24/15 - 9 CB @ 43,000mi 100% charge: GIDS=199, S=95.37, C=46.76, H=50.51 Lost 1st CB at 26300, 2nd CB 34274 3rd CB 43000 miles

AndyH
Posts: 6388
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:43 pm
Location: San Antonio

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?

Sat Nov 16, 2013 9:32 pm

Wennfred wrote:Good read on a test run from San Diego to Vegas using E85 and then Gas.

http://www.edmunds.com/fuel-economy/e85 ... -test.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


Fred
There is so much wrong with this article.

To get an accurate comparison, the vehicle should have been run on a dyno, not on streets. There is no way a human driver can maintain even a 'close enough' performance protocol on the road - and that's without unconscious changes in driving because of driver bias. At the very least the road trips should have been done three times and averaged. To be fair, the Southwest Research Institute (one of two federally licensed fuel and lubricants labs) does run fuel economy testing for class 8 (semi) trucks on closed roads. They do multiple runs, adjust for changes in atmospheric conditions, and the drivers are trained and evaluated for precise driving, and the tests are double-blind - the driver has no idea what fuel or lubricant is in the truck.
http://www.swri.org/3pubs/brochure/d08/ ... elecon.htm

The crew doesn't know what 'biodiesel' is. Straight biodiesel has zero petroleum in it. Maybe the pump had a blend, but it shouldn't have if this is a legit 'alternate fuel' island as reported.

The truck probably didn't have any prior miles on alcohol, and that means there's carbon on the piston crown, the combustion chamber, and probably deposits on the backs of the intake valves. Additionally, there are very likely to be gum/varnish deposits in the fuel tank. All of this is cleaned during the first 2-5 tanks of ethanol run through the engine. This is enough to change truck performance as it is. But also, the truck's computer takes some time to automatically adjust to the different fuel - the computer continues to learn and tweak fuel injection quantities until it stabilizes. The truck should have been run on at least three tanks of E85 prior to the test for both engine cleaning and computer adjustment. Then it should have gotten an oil change.

One of the ugliest problems with the article is in their CO2 comparison. They quibbled over the tiny difference and declared that it's not worth it to run ethanol - while completely missing the point that 85% of the CO2 emitted was not fossil carbon - it was freshly 'grown' carbon that the corn and sorghum plants pulled out of the atmosphere six months or so before their test drive.

This fail isn't about being for or against ethanol - it's about demanding that writers have a basic CLUE unless the article is labeled 'fiction' - which most of this was. :(
"The stupid become extinct."-Bill Mollison
2018 Outlander PHEV
2015 smart Electric Drive (lease ended Feb, 2018)
OpenEVSE Plus DIY

kubel
Posts: 1609
Joined: Mon Feb 13, 2012 11:38 am
Leaf Number: 19628
Location: Southeast Michigan

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?

Sun Nov 17, 2013 12:48 am

As long as ethanol is corny, I'm ok with ethanol-free gas. Viable food products shouldn't be diverted to transportation fuels. It's a bad idea.

Of course, this is awkward. I feel like a recovering alcoholic talking about the merits of Vodka over Whiskey. I'M SOBER NOW GUYS, COME ON.
2012 Nissan LEAF SV
20% degradation in 42k miles
Leased 5-17-2012, Returned 1-15-2016


2017 Chevy Volt LT
Siren Red Tintcoat
Leased 10-21-2016

User avatar
TomT
Posts: 10642
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:09 pm
Delivery Date: 01 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 000360
Location: California, now Georgia
Contact: Website

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?

Sun Nov 17, 2013 7:58 am

The other issue is that it is not possible with current technology to build a true flex fuel engine. The different compression ratios and other technical tidbits necessary to build an engine that operates optimally on either gas or methanol precludes building one that can operate optimally on both. Flex is an idea that exists purely to fill a political mandate and to take advantage of a tax loophole...
kubel wrote:As long as ethanol is corny, I'm ok with ethanol-free gas. Viable food products shouldn't be diverted to transportation fuels. It's a bad idea.
Leaf SL 2011 to 2016, Volt Premier 2016 to 2019, and now:
2019 Model 3; LR, RWD, FSD, 19" Sport Wheels, silver/black; built 3/17/19, delivered 3/29/19.

AndyH
Posts: 6388
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:43 pm
Location: San Antonio

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?

Sun Nov 17, 2013 12:19 pm

kubel wrote:As long as ethanol is corny, I'm ok with ethanol-free gas. Viable food products shouldn't be diverted to transportation fuels. It's a bad idea.

Of course, this is awkward. I feel like a recovering alcoholic talking about the merits of Vodka over Whiskey. I'M SOBER NOW GUYS, COME ON.
I am in favor of ethanol as a liquid fuel compared with gasoline. I also agree completely that food should not be diverted to make fuel.

The good news is that the type of corn used for ethanol is the same stuff grown for animal feed, not to ship to a store for corn on the cob. Additionally, because the corn is grown specifically to be an industrial feedstock, it's used for multiple purposes. After making ethanol from corn, the stuff left over is a better animal feed than raw corn - it's also a more condensed feed (animals need less) and it costs less to ship.

The 10% ethanol used in gasoline as an oxygen supplier replaces other chemicals like MTBE - replacing a known carcinogen with a harmless, biodegradable product.

None of this takes our industrial ag system off the hook, however. One example of how warped our system has become - the system that makes too much corn available - is the state of Illinois - some of the most fertile farmland in the country. Even though they grow tons of corn and soybeans, they have to import 97% of their food.
"The stupid become extinct."-Bill Mollison
2018 Outlander PHEV
2015 smart Electric Drive (lease ended Feb, 2018)
OpenEVSE Plus DIY

asimba2
Posts: 354
Joined: Tue Nov 05, 2013 11:15 am
Delivery Date: 01 Jan 2014
Location: Northern CA

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?

Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:22 pm

Image

Ethanol is a money maker for small engine mechanics. Heck, even my 2012 Acura warns that if I use more than 10% ethanol by volume, the warranty for my entire fuel system is void.

User avatar
ebill3
Posts: 1400
Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 1:23 pm
Delivery Date: 15 Sep 2011
Leaf Number: 7964
Location: Puyallup WA

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?opr

Wed Dec 04, 2013 1:34 am

TomT wrote:The other issue is that it is not possible with current technology to build a true flex fuel engine. The different compression ratios and other technical tidbits necessary to build an engine that operates optimally on either gas or methanol precludes building one that can operate optimally on both. Flex is an idea that exists purely to fill a political mandate and to take advantage of a tax loophole...
yes.

Is: "There ain't no free lunch" appropriate here?
All electric - red LEAF, green Tesla S. No ICE.

AndyH
Posts: 6388
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:43 pm
Location: San Antonio

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?

Wed Dec 04, 2013 1:44 am

asimba2 wrote:<snip>

Ethanol is a money maker for small engine mechanics. Heck, even my 2012 Acura warns that if I use more than 10% ethanol by volume, the warranty for my entire fuel system is void.
BS propaganda, pure and simple. AAA is in bed with the API when it comes to slurring anything that competes with gasoline.

Your 2012 Acura's misfueling warning is appropriate as 10% ethanol was the highest concentration in 'regular' gasoline when the car's emissions system was certified. Keep in mind, however, that a fuel system safe to use 10% ethanol is also automatically safe for 100% ethanol. You can run your car on 50/50 E85/G90 today and you'll only notice the small fuel economy drop.

My non-flex fuel V6 Ranger runs better on E85 - it runs cooler, stays in gear longer on hills, and is smoother. Starting is normal until the temperature drops to the mid-40s, then it could use a primer. In the winter, I drop back to 50/50 E85/gasoline.

Small engines - especially 2stroke engines, and especially especially ;) 2-strokes that use pre-mixed gas/oil should not use ethanol mixes. The fuel systems are not guaranteed to be alcohol safe (unlike cars - which were updated well before the 2000 model year) - and 2-stroke oil will not stay mixed in alcohol blends. But don't confuse these with cars - small engines can easily be adjusted to run on straight ethanol by replacing or drilling the carburetor jets, but they don't have the automated controls modern car engines have.

There's a legal and regulatory reason why running E85 might be considered 'illegal' but there is no technical reason why any car on the road made since at least 2000 cannot burn E15 without modification.
"The stupid become extinct."-Bill Mollison
2018 Outlander PHEV
2015 smart Electric Drive (lease ended Feb, 2018)
OpenEVSE Plus DIY

AndyH
Posts: 6388
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:43 pm
Location: San Antonio

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?opr

Wed Dec 04, 2013 1:47 am

ebill3 wrote:
TomT wrote:The other issue is that it is not possible with current technology to build a true flex fuel engine. The different compression ratios and other technical tidbits necessary to build an engine that operates optimally on either gas or methanol precludes building one that can operate optimally on both. Flex is an idea that exists purely to fill a political mandate and to take advantage of a tax loophole...
yes.

Is: "There ain't no free lunch" appropriate here?
Yet the engines do exist - and modern computer controlled turbo- and superchargers and other tricks to change compression on the fly make it much easier today than yesterday. It's not rocket science - it's been done for years.
"The stupid become extinct."-Bill Mollison
2018 Outlander PHEV
2015 smart Electric Drive (lease ended Feb, 2018)
OpenEVSE Plus DIY

User avatar
TomT
Posts: 10642
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:09 pm
Delivery Date: 01 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 000360
Location: California, now Georgia
Contact: Website

Re: Thoughts on ethanol-free gasoline?opr

Wed Dec 04, 2013 9:03 am

Sorry, but that is simply not true. Turbo and Super Chargers can accomplish many things but changing the mechanical compression ratio - which is just an important as the dynamic compression ratio - is not one of them... Engines optimized for high ratios of Ethanol (E85) also use different cam timing and duration profiles, and different lift. Then there are the different injector patterns and ignition requirements... An engine designed to run on both is, by nature, like a camel designed by committee; a compromise.

Unless I had no other options, I would never fuel anything I owned with E15... Thankfully, it appears as if it will never gain traction in the marketplace (and even the EPA is back-pedaling on it) so that likely will not be a consideration...
AndyH wrote:Yet the engines do exist - and modern computer controlled turbo- and superchargers and other tricks to change compression on the fly make it much easier today than yesterday. It's not rocket science - it's been done for years.
Leaf SL 2011 to 2016, Volt Premier 2016 to 2019, and now:
2019 Model 3; LR, RWD, FSD, 19" Sport Wheels, silver/black; built 3/17/19, delivered 3/29/19.

Return to “Off-Topic”