Biodiesel

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by djuhnke, Apr 20, 2005.

  1. djuhnke

    djuhnke Well-Known Member

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    Any one have any experience with this? Is it all its cracked up to be? Near as I can tell, I can take bushels of corn, "process" them and I have diesel as the end result. Will this kill my tractor engine? What about my auto? Any thoughts?

    Dan
     
  2. patarini

    patarini Well-Known Member

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  3. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Hum. Typically you would ferment & distill a bushel of corn into 2.5 - 2.9 gallons of ethanol for your gasoline engine.

    One would process out a bushel of soybeans (or other oil crop - sunflower, canola/rape, etc.) and get about 40% biodiesel.

    While corn has some oil in it, can't see it being an effective conversion.

    --->Paul

     
  4. tamilee

    tamilee Well-Known Member

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    Hi Paul;
    If I ferment and distill corn could I get arrested for operating a still? Do I need or can I get a permit for this?
    Thanks,
    tamilee
     
  5. patarini

    patarini Well-Known Member

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  6. patarini

    patarini Well-Known Member

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    Oops yes a permit is needed for this!
     
  7. WisJim

    WisJim Well-Known Member Supporter

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    There are other oil crops that give better production of oil per acre than corn, such as rape seed (canola) and some kinds of algae. The real cheap way to make small scale biodiesel is from used veggie oil, but of course you can also convert your engine to use the veggie oil straight, while the biodiesel should work directly in any diesel engine, with some allowances for temperatures. To use straight veggie oil ("grease car") you have a seperate tank for the oil with a preheater in the tank that runs from the car heating system to preheat and melt the veggie oil so it flows properly. There is a bit more to it, but it works well--but complicates the engine or vehicle. Biodiesel should be a direct substitue for diesel fuel and require no vehicle changes, hence its popularity.

    Jim
     
  8. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    BioDiesel can be mixed up to 20% with regular diesel and used on your vehicles with no mods. Past 20% and modifications are needed.
     
  9. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

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    Diesel cars will run fine on straight biodiesel, no modifications needed. The problem is see with the current promotion of home biodiesel equipment is the reliance on used veggie oil from restaurants. The town closest to me has two restaurants with deepfryers. Now, how many people will that supply with biodiesel. I would guess one, if they don't do a lot of driving. Other than that its a great way to deal with what would otherwise be wasted. Most biodiesel is going to come from commercial production and that's where the rub is. To grow, harvest, transport, extract and transport to the end user is going to take a lot more energy than it produces. Also, using current agricultural practices, its not sustainable. The only system that is really going to work will be electric vehicles powered by solar, wind, or geothermal electric production. And even that will require a long payback time.
     
  10. unioncreek

    unioncreek Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I'm in the process of setting up my biodiesel processor. I am going to use waste vegetable oil from local restaurants and run it in my Dodge Cummins. The Cummins will run 100% biodiesel some of the other diesel engine will run on it. I have not refigured what it will cost since the price of diesel when up, but when it was $2.25 I could make biodiesel for around $.80/gallon. Methanol has gone up so its probably closer to $1.00/gallon.

    Bobg