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  #1  
Old 01-25-2014
biobug's Avatar
biobug biobug is offline
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Default To grease or not to grease, that is the question...

I thought I would start a wvo (waste vegetable oil) thread because there is so much out there -pro or con- about it. The picture shows my "grease beast" with lift gate that makes it possible for me to still do the greasing. I have done it since 2003 in the Dodge . I bought the truck new in 1994 and have abused it every since. It has 225,000 miles with over 1/2 on grease.
I agree that it is a messy job and lots of hard work but to me, it is still worth it. The VW in the picture has run on grease since 2005. If asked if I would start now in 2014 I would not do it based on my experience. The main reason is that the rigs that grease (wvo) works with are getting old and harder to find. In the picture is a 2005 Jeep CRD that I would not grease. I also make Biodiesel and that is what it uses. 1/2 the year it runs 100 % on my biodiesel and the other cold 1/2 on a mix of USLD and Biodiesel.
One of the big reasons I would not do it over is unrelated to the wvo and biodiesel. It is the government BS that if you do it legally you have to go thru.
I signed up with our states Fuels Tax Group when I started in 2004 and have paid the road tax 1/4ly every since. That also means that I have to do a 720 IRS form every 1/4 with my payment to them. They have simply been a pain in the @^%%. I understand why most people do not but I ,being an honest idiot , wanted to pay my share.
There has been a lot of funny things that have happened but one that stands out it my working with "Turtle Island Foods" (makers of delicious ToFurkey) . They are located in our town and for years bought their soy bean oil in cardboard pallets of 275 gallons, They had a plastic liner inside that had leftover oil so they let me take them to get rid of them at 50 cents. gallon. Sometimes I would get 15 gallons of pure oil out of one bag. That, unfortunately prompted me to let the owner know how much waste there was so soon they got a sucker system that got it down to under a gallon.
Well, one day they called me panicking that they had a full tote that sprung a leak and I could have it if I hurried. Well, I grabbed a tarp and truck and raced the 7 miles to their plant where a forklift operator was waiting. I backed up and dropped the gate and in it came. It had probably 150 gallons then. I tried to put it on the tarp so I could save as much as possible. I drove home
carefully (I thought) and scooped into a barrel as much as possible but by the time I finished I salvaged only 25 gallons or so. I had a real mess at home but thought about where the rest went.... A neighbor happened by and asked what I was doing so I filled him in to which he said he knew because he followed a 6 mile trail of oil all the way to my driveway...
Luckily no accidents occurred that I was aware of...........
Many years later there was a big spill of wvo on main street in Hood River and the Fire Dept. Had to clean it up like a hazardous spill. There was also a couple of accidents as a result because 55 -100 gallons dumped in a confined area can cause a mess. The fire dept. figured out it was a greaser that lost the oil so the fire chief immediately thought of me! I knew him since he was a kid. I had to prove it was not me (which it really wasn't).
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John Alley
Hood River, Oregon
1992 Wanderlodge 36SP
porschenein59@gorge.net

"There comes a time in a mans life where he must take the bull by the tail,, and face the situation."

Last edited by biobug; 01-25-2014 at 08:10 PM.
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  #2  
Old 01-25-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biobug View Post
I thought I would start a wvo (waste vegetable oil) thread because there is so much out there -pro or con- about it. The picture shows my "grease beast" with lift gate that makes it possible for me to still do the greasing. I have done it since 2003 in the Dodge . I bought the truck new in 1994 and have abused it every since. It has 225,000 miles with over 1/2 on grease.
I agree that it is a messy job and lots of hard work but to me, it is still worth it. The VW in the picture has run on grease since 2005. If asked if I would start now in 2014 I would not do it based on my experience. The main reason is that the rigs that grease (wvo) works with are getting old and harder to find. In the picture is a 2005 Jeep CRD that I would not grease. I also make Biodiesel and that is what it uses. 1/2 the year it runs 100 % on my biodiesel and the other cold 1/2 on a mix of USLD and Biodiesel.
One of the big reasons I would not do it over is unrelated to the wvo and biodiesel. It is the government BS that if you do it legally you have to go thru.
I signed up with our states Fuels Tax Group when I started in 2004 and have paid the road tax 1/4ly every since. That also means that I have to do a 720 IRS form every 1/4 with my payment to them. They have simply been a pain in the @^%%. I understand why most people do not but I ,being an honest idiot , wanted to pay my share.
There has been a lot of funny things that have happened but one that stands out it my working with "Turtle Island Foods" (makers of delicious ToFurkey) . They are located in our town and for years bought their soy bean oil in cardboard pallets of 275 gallons, They had a plastic liner inside that had leftover oil so they let me take them to get rid of them at 50 cents. gallon. Sometimes I would get 15 gallons of pure oil out of one bag. That, unfortunately prompted me to let the owner know how much waste there was so soon they got a sucker system that got it down to under a gallon.
Well, one day they called me panicking that they had a full tote that sprung a leak and I could have it if I hurried. Well, I grabbed a tarp and truck and raced the 7 miles to their plant where a forklift operator was waiting. I backed up and dropped the gate and in it came. It had probably 150 gallons then. I tried to put it on the tarp so I could save as much as possible. I drove home
carefully (I thought) and scooped into a barrel as much as possible but by the time I finished I salvaged only 25 gallons or so. I had a real mess at home but thought about where the rest went.... A neighbor happened by and asked what I was doing so I filled him in to which he said he knew because he followed a 6 mile trail of oil all the way to my driveway...
Luckily no accidents occurred that I was aware of...........
Many years later there was a big spill of wvo on main street in Hood River and the Fire Dept. Had to clean it up like a hazardous spill. There was also a couple of accidents as a result because 55 -100 gallons dumped in a confined area can cause a mess. The fire dept. figured out it was a greaser that lost the oil so the fire chief immediately thought of me! I knew him since he was a kid. I had to prove it was not me (which it really wasn't).


John,
That sounds a lot like "guilty until proven innocent" which clearly goes against the American justice system. I think, no wait a second, I know if that would have been me in your shoes I would have told him to stick it where the sun don't shine. It was his job to prove that you did it. To steel one of Randy's closings. "Just sayin'"
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  #3  
Old 01-25-2014
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John
Do you make your own biodiesel at home? I got interested in the process and made a test batch from new oil as a learning experience. I determined that it wasn't worth the effert unless there was a free, or near free source of wvo.
If you do make your own biodiesel could you please include a photo of your equipment and maybe a brief description of the process.
Thanks for the post, I find this interesting. From my very limited experience I would run biodiesel in my bus but I think I would stay away from wvo.
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Old 01-25-2014
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I'll do that tomorrow. I am lucky to have a lot of room to store barrels so I have learned to make my years supply of biodiesel in the hot summer to save on power. I still have the equipment but it is shoved in a corner. Heating the wvo and washing it took a lot of power and water . I finally went to a dry wash tower to clean the raw biodiesel but it needs to stay warm in the shop the whole time to do a good job.
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  #5  
Old 01-25-2014
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heating the wvo took a lot of power and water. so how is all this, plus your time and energy -"saving"?
and- with a 92 coach, what is that doing to all your filters, lines and fuel tank?
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  #6  
Old 01-25-2014
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I am not using wvo in the Bird. I used to get enough grease to do it with MT Hood Meadows wvo Ski Resortbut I do not get theirs any more. I do make enough to blend 10 to 25% Biodiesel into the Birds tank. Frankly I considered doing grease in it but there is nowhere under it to hang another tank and I will not give up storage space. Doing over 25% biodiesel is a concern because of the rubber fuel lines that a '92 has. A '94 or later could handle 50% and more. I will in time replace the old lines with Viton or Nitrile hose that could handle more but I doubt I will ever go to 50% because I just do not make enough anymore.
If I did wvo there would be a separate tank that would heat to 160 -18o degrees before it was burned in the engine. At that temperature the viscosity would be thinner than USLD . That is what both the Dodge and VW has. As I said on another post, that is where the most screw-ups occur. People forget to switch it back to USLD a couple of minutes before shutting down. That is where damage can occur because of the injectors trying to squirt Crisco. Cold oil also causes coking and buildup of a plastic like substance that when it breaks loose causes havic with turbo impellors.
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John Alley
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1992 Wanderlodge 36SP
porschenein59@gorge.net

"There comes a time in a mans life where he must take the bull by the tail,, and face the situation."

Last edited by biobug; 01-25-2014 at 10:11 PM.
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Old 01-25-2014
ejallison1 ejallison1 is offline
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John,
Lot's of questions? How many gallons of biodiesel are you able to make up at a time? Do you use NaOH or KOH as the reagent in your set-up?-any opinions on what works better. Are you required to pay excise tax (quarterly 720) on both the WVO and biodiesel or on just the biodiesel? On the vehicles you use WVO (waste vegetable oil) in have you had any problems with coking? -do you have a separate fuel tank for the WVO on these vehicles so that you can switch over to dinosaur diesel prior to turning the engine off? It doesn't sound like you have run into any problems running WVO since you have been running it for awhile-any precautions you need to take on running WVO. Would you share what your cost of production is for biodiesel in terms of the materials and energy cost but not the cost of gathering the materials? How long is the shelf life on your biodiesel?
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  #8  
Old 01-26-2014
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A batch of biodiesel is normally 38 gallons. You use 40 gallons of wvo and slowly add the 9.3 gallons of Lye-methanol (methoxide) into it based on the fatty acid content of the particular batch of oil. I end pumping all my wvo into an 325 gallon tank and then just do one titration test for the 325 gallons rather than take the time to do it every batch. I use lye while some around me use pot-ash. Anyway, when I am set up and going I can do 2-3 batches a day. I barrel up the 100% biodiesel and build up to 300-350 gallons and call it quits. My wife drives a Smart diesel and uses just biodiesel (depending on the weather for cast) and my main ride is the VW that runs on grease in the hot tank and Biodiesel in the main tank. The truck does the same as the VW. The
325 gallon tank is in the top part of my barn so gravity helps once it is there. That is where I fill the truck and VW with wvo. Below , in the skating ring- (yes wvo is very messy) that is where all the stuff is. I store it in the bottom of the barn where it keeps cool. I can legally store 100% biodiesel but if I add a drop of real USLD and it becomes B-99 and I can't have over 100 gallons stored without all the paperwork and forms that any commercial fuel company has to have. That all changed when by definition George Bush signed a law allowing big producers of biodiesel a penny a percent tax incentive up to B-99.It also screwed the back yard makers and was meant to do so. I used to drive to Portland and get 3 barrels of methanol at a time to save money until I found out I would be thrown in jail for it. The potential of blowing up something with 165 gallons of a highly volatile substance was very illegal. I also had trouble getting LYe after about 2006 when the Rex lye and all lye became illegal because of the Psudaphenifrin - meth making laws. That is when I found that I could go to a commercial Chemical company and buy 50 lb. bags of LYE dirt cheap for cash without even showing a drivers license.
The actual cost on making Biodiesel legally with the 24.5cent federal tax and our 30 cent state tax runs the cost up to about $1.25 a gallon. With power , water and labor I used to figure $2.00 a gallon. I got that down some by doing it in the summer in a week of messiness. I use more wvo than Biodiesel yearly but that is shifting because I don't drive to Portland nearly as much as I did and that is when the wvo was hot for use and used the most. I live 7 miles off I-84 and when I hit the freeway I was off Biodiesel or diesel and on wvo. The cost on getting wvo clean is easy and cheap if you have patience. I let it settle at least a week before filtering it and the last 5 gallons in the barrel is used for compost or I burn it.I can use one sock filter to do 2 barrels of wvo that way. Each barrel is heated for 12-24 hours open to rid it of any water and then sent thru the pump and another filter to the storage tank. I do not feel that I have ever had the wvo cost over 50 cents a gallon. I could not do it without having the room and the equipment to do it. I have given up on 12 volt pumps and suckers as I spent more time working on them than time they saved. I use 55 gallon drums (open with clamp on lids) and 5 gallon buckets. I also have a wvo drawer of clothes used only for the collecting because it ruins clothes and my wifes mood. My best friend laughs himself silly when he sees me greasing in the truck. He says I look like a transient that just stole Fred Sanfords truck.
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"There comes a time in a mans life where he must take the bull by the tail,, and face the situation."
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  #9  
Old 01-26-2014
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This picture shows my wifes Smart For two CDI that she gets 55+ mpg in.
The UTV in the back is diesel powered and along with our lawn mower and wood splitter all run on my fuel.
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John Alley
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"There comes a time in a mans life where he must take the bull by the tail,, and face the situation."
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Old 01-26-2014
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John 55mph + seems very conservative. I know people with diesel Smart cars getting much more than that. Maybe a tune up? What do you think?
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