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Thread: ethanol removal

  1. #11
    prasmussen's Avatar
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    OK so...... if I buy premium gas and, one way or another, remove the alcohol, do I have sufficient octane to prevent detonation? Pretty sure this is not what the auto gas STC had in mind so are we still technically on solid ground? It is almost impossible to find ethanol-free gas here though I'll admit to never having tried a marina.

  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by prasmussen View Post
    OK so...... if I buy premium gas and, one way or another, remove the alcohol, do I have sufficient octane to prevent detonation?
    http://eaaforums.org/showthread.php?...hlight=alcohol

    read a LOT of info about the subject.

  3. #13

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    Startron will not protect your fuel system from the effects of alcohol . It does have benefits , but the alchohol will dissolve the sealer in your metal fuel tanks or the tanks rhemselves if they are fiberglass. It will turn many seals and hoses into a soft sticky mess. It will at the very least break loose the built up mess in your fuel system, lugging filters and more. I would never use ethanol fuel in my aircraft as I would like to live to grow old. There are no additives which will make it safe for use in your aircraft unless the entire fuel system is designed to handle it. The ethanol in gas will also absorb large amounts of water from the air which can and will cause corrosion issues all through your fuel system. Is your insurance paid up ?.

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by vaflier View Post
    It will turn many seals and hoses into a soft sticky mess.
    It's not the Alcohol doing that, Dr.s have been using rubber stuff in conjunction with alcohol for many many years with no problems. Refineries and distributors have been using rubber seals and hoses for years to handle alcohol with no problems.

    Ask your self what was put in gas to replace the TEL when it was outlawed? those 2 chemicals are what attack the rubber compounds not alcohol.
    Last edited by Tom Downey; 02-28-2012 at 08:31 PM.

  5. #15

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    Tom, You may well be correct about another additive causing the rubber componets to fail. But the end result is the same and unless the entire fuel system is designed or modified to work with this fuel there will almost certianly be problems. I work for a fuel supply company and have seen many many problems with this garbage both with and without the additives. Fortunately the company I work for also owns several auto parts stores. Ethanol fuel has been fantatstic for the auto parts business as well as the marine parts business. It should be outlawed !. Could you tell I really do hate he stuff. It even ate all of the seals out of our fuel delivery trucks. The only fuel which is worse to deal with is bio desiel.

  6. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by vaflier View Post
    Ethanol fuel ...should be outlawed!
    farmers buy retail and sell wholesale. they are frugal businesspersons. they could produce their own alcohol. if alcohol were truly a viable, economical motor vehicle fuel, farmers would produce their own and use nothing else. so ends the unsolicited editorial.

  7. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by vaflier View Post
    It even ate all of the seals out of our fuel delivery trucks.
    I worked for Mercury Service the fuel handler for the Navy for many years part time, we delivered auto fuel for the ground handling equipment with a 1954 Chevy with a 1000 gallon tank on the back, we went for years with one hose. Then we were delivering auto fuel without lead and the Benzene/Toluene substitute for lead and from then on we used 2-3 hoses per year, until the Navy went 1 fuel concept. (JP-8) we never delivered auto fuel with alcohol but we had the problems just the same. It ain't the alcohol. I've run airboats with 0-200---- up thru----IO-360 200 horse power, they run just fine on auto oil and fuel.

  8. #18

    Do not wash ethanol from gasoline ! Do not use additives!

    Folks,

    The only solution to ethanol in fuel is to avoid it. This has been reported many times over the past years. Ethanol blends are - in nearly all instances - not allowed in our aircraft engines that are STCd or TCd for autogas. You can not remove all the ethanol from an E10 blend, the resulting fuel is likely sub-octane and not a legal fuel, and you must also dispose of the resulting highly corrosive water/ethanol mixture.

    You will find two articles on the subject of 'ethanol washing' here:
    http://www.generalaviationnews.com/2...-out-of-mogas/
    http://www.generalaviationnews.com/2...mogas-part-ii/

    Read our GAfuels blog on GAN for numerous article on autogas, ethanol, where to find autogas, etc.

    Use Pure-gas.org to find retail sellers.

    Use this list to find airports selling autogas: http://www.flyunleaded.com/airports.php

    Join the free Aviation Fuel Club to stay abreast of autogas issues, www.aviationfuelclub.org

    Urge the EAA and AOPA leadership to strongly support autogas as the only replacement for leaded Avgas that will power nearly all sport aircraft.

    Urge your congressmen and legislators to repeal the RFS ethanol mandates in EISA 2007 that have resulted in ethanol adulterating our nation's fuel supply.

    DO NOT USE AN ETHANOL BLEND IN AN AIRCRAFT ENGINE, PERIOD.

  9. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by kmisegades@bellsouth.net View Post

    Folks,
    The only solution to ethanol in fuel is to avoid it.

    DO NOT USE AN ETHANOL BLEND IN AN AIRCRAFT ENGINE, PERIOD.
    Actually that isn't correct, unless you are simply expressing an opinion. Especially since we are on a experimental aircraft forum, how about we talk without using so many absolutes? It would be officially correct to say, "Do not use ethanol in a certified aircraft". Even then, that would be a generalization since some aircraft in Brazil are approved for ethanol and there are a few aircraft here in the US that have an STC for ethanol :-) But, in any case, +99% of the certified aircraft in the US are not.

    Experimental aircraft. Do not use unless you've worked through the changes that need to be made to the aircraft. Vansairforce has some good threads on what builders have done to adapt their experimental airplanes to ethanol blends. One can read up on how ethanol and methanol is used for ADI (anti detonation injection). Reno air racers today and the powerful old radials, some of them had ADI. Also, check out the Vanguards and Greg Poe for boxer aircraft engines running just fine on ethanol. Sure, you have to make some changes, but don't we have some room for that in experimental aviation?

  10. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by nomocom View Post
    Actually that isn't correct, unless you are simply expressing an opinion. Especially since we are on a experimental aircraft forum, how about we talk without using so many absolutes? It would be officially correct to say, "Do not use ethanol in a certified aircraft". Even then, that would be a generalization since some aircraft in Brazil are approved for ethanol and there are a few aircraft here in the US that have an STC for ethanol :-) But, in any case, +99% of the certified aircraft in the US are not.

    Experimental aircraft. Do not use unless you've worked through the changes that need to be made to the aircraft. Vansairforce has some good threads on what builders have done to adapt their experimental airplanes to ethanol blends. One can read up on how ethanol and methanol is used for ADI (anti detonation injection). Reno air racers today and the powerful old radials, some of them had ADI. Also, check out the Vanguards and Greg Poe for boxer aircraft engines running just fine on ethanol. Sure, you have to make some changes, but don't we have some room for that in experimental aviation?

    Yes, of course owners of Experimentals can do what they want, but few I know would take the risk with the fuel or lubricants in their engines. ADI uses water/methanol (not ethanol) mixture that is contained in a separate tank and sprayed directly into the fuel charge; this has nothing to do with ethanol in gasoline. Poe's engine ran on 100LL for most flying and an ethanol blend during airshows. If you don't mind draining your fuel system of an ethanol blend after every flight as he did, and as the 100% ethanol users in Brazil do, then I suppose this is OK in an Experimental, assuming every component that ethanol might touch in the engine and fuel system can tolerate it. Note that Greg Poe flew for Fagen Inc., the country's largest builder of ethanol plants, so of course they would claim that there are no issues with ethanol, which is very far from the truth.

    Remember too that ethanol will start destroying components even with one single batch of fuel. Switching back to pure E0 fuel will not reverse the damage already done. There is also no denying that ethanol has only 70% of the BTUs per gallon as gasoline does, so using any amount of it will lead to lower power and less range, in addition to a myriad other issues that are very well documented. What pilot would knowingly use a fuel guaranteed to lower the power that his engine would use? That's what you have with an ethanol blend.

    For a good idea how ethanol blends damage millions of engines, read the statements for any given state in this survey:
    http://pure-gas.org/petition

    Yes, the Rotax engine is approved for E10, but talk to any Rotax repairman (like my son) and they will recommend only the use of premium, ethanol-free fuel as the best. Jabiru's were approved for E10, but the company rescinded that approval for its aircraft after experiencing serious damage to the fuel system caused by phase separation and the resulting highly corrosive water/ethanol mixture that sits in a fuel tank.

    Airplanes with their open-vented fuel systems, kept in operation for 40-50 years, are not comparable to cars. Just because E10 might work in the latest generation of cars (but is still inferior to ethanol-free fuel) does not imply that it is safe to use in any airplanes. Apples and oranges.

    Instead of risking their lives and property, pilots should put their effort into working with their state legislature, congressman, the EPA and others to ban the use of ethanol in premium fuel, as Mississippi State Senator Michael Watson has proposed in his state. Call too on the leaders of the EAA and AOPA to do the same. Using any amounts of ethanol in an aircraft engine is comparable to Russian Roulette, in my opinion, which is based on three years of studying and reporting on the subject, experience with my own aircraft engine (that was destroyed by the accidental use of E10), and thousands of comments from others who engines have been damaged or destroyed by ethanol blends.


    Kent Misegades
    EAA #520919, Homebuilder, Vintage, Aerobatics
    President, EAA1114, Apex, NC www.eaa1114.org
    Director, Aviation Fuel Club, www.AVIATIONFUELCLUB.org
    Cary, North Carolina, USA
    919-946-7096 (mobile)
    919-303-8230 (home office)

    kent@ufuel.com

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