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The Biodiesel Bible
by Keith Addison, Journey to Forever
This is the only book that thoroughly covers the entire subject of making your own biodiesel all the information at the Journey to Forever website and very much more.
Learn how to make top-quality biodiesel that will pass all the quality standards requirements every time.
We haven't had a failed batch for 11 years! (But if you do have a failed batch we tell you how to rescue it and how to improve your processing so it won't happen again.)
Save money! Making your own biodiesel will save you thousands.
New! Build a 3-inch ethanol still Click HERE
Biofuels supplies and suppliers
These are not paid-for advertisements, they're selections made according to our best information and independent recommendations from users, provided as a reader service without any guarantee. If you should buy any of these products, please advise the vendors that you read about their products here.
Roger Sanders has updated his popular improved version of the Mother Earth News waste oil heater with a great deal of new information and new options.
This waste oil heater solves all the problems that made the original MEN version difficult to use.
Roger's design is simple and reliable -- it's easy to build and easy to use, it's quiet, it uses no electricity, it's easy to light, easy to clean and easy to control, it has a wide heat range, and it runs on waste vegetable oil (WVO) just as well as on used engine oil. It can save you thousands of dollars in heating bills.
The Second Edition is available as a pdf e-book, price $22.50. Complete DIY instructions -- buy it HERE.
Spanish-language version HERE.
Straight vegetable oil systems
Pour-point depressants, winterising equipment
Vegetable oil filters
How to make soap
Tiny diesel engines
Multifuel lamps and stoves
Flex-fuel ethanol conversion kits
Books and manuals
Automatic temperature control valves
Propane conversion kits
Supplies for the homebrewer from DudaDiesel Biodiesel Supply: biodiesel chemicals -- methanol, potassium hydroxide, sodium hydroxide, isopropyl alcohol, phenolphthalein, sulphuric (sulfuric) acid and more; also heat exchangers, pumps, filters, cone tanks -- high quality at low prices, buy online:
Biofuel Systems in the UK supply a wide range of specialized biodiesel equipment -- components for processors, agitators, heaters, mixers, motors, pumps, tanks, flow meters, hoses & connectors, also oil presses, filtration, separators. Analytical testing, laboratory equipment. Buy online:
Biodiesel additives -- from Biofuel Systems, UK: Wintron XC30 biodiesel pour-point depressant for cold flow below -20°C; Fuelclean BD enzyme-based anti-contamination additive; Baynox, prolongs biodiesel storage life / oxidation stability. Buy online:
Biofuel Systems in the UK design and build state-of-the-art complete biodiesel processing systems, complying with the highest safety requirements and producing biodiesel from a range of feedstocks to meet all recognised standards including EN14214 / ASTM 6751. Custom-built to individual specifications. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ageratec Sweden makes automated biodiesel processors using sequence controllers, ranging from 800 to 8,000 liters capacity.
There are as yet no home-scale ready-made biodiesel processors on the market that are worth having. See for instance this message to the Biofuel mailing list: Re: [biofuel] Best Processer: "You could make an excellent processor plus more than 8,000 gallons of high-quality biodiesel for that price."
For homebrewer-scale processors, build your own, it's easy and safe. There's a variety of types and designs here: Biodiesel processors.
In the US, try race circuits.
Contact any bulk, liquid fuels distributor for 55 gallon lots or better. Any bulk propane distributorship should be willing to tell you where they get their methanol from. It's used as a carrier for water, aka a "drying agent".
"For smaller lots speak with the management of any speed shop. Their customer base is largely dependant upon methanol availability. If you know anyone who races, they may be willing to part with small quantities.
"Also look on the net for distributors of Sunoco Race Fuels. These distributors have access to unblended methanol in all quantities.
Methanol in small quantities, "for getting started", and in 55-gal drums, from DudaDiesel Biodiesel Supply -- buy online:
Dyce Chemical Inc. -- 1353 Taylor Pl., Billings MT, USA (406) 248-3131 -- 99+% methanol available in 55-gallon drums only. Call center (Pennsylvania) 888-926-4151. Sales (Montreal) 514-636-9230.
VP Racing Fuels sells pure methanol and has a world-wide distribution network.
Hiperfuels -- Methanol, 1-gallon, 5-gallon, 55-gallon containers, buy online, delivery by UPS/Fedex. Houston, Texas, USA. Phone 713 305-3133, Contact Jess Hewitt, email@example.com
Methanex -- one of the largest suppliers in the world. Sales inquiries firstname.lastname@example.org. Phone (800) 661-8851 (toll free in North America), (604) 661-2600 Fax (604) 661-2676. Mail 1800 Waterfront Centre, 200 Burrard Street, Vancouver, BC, V6C 3M1, CANADA.
Cheap testers can be a false economy. Good instruments are available for a reasonable price. It's worthwhile to spend a bit extra and get one with a replaceable electrode (sensor), and with Automatic Temperature Compensation (ATC). Resolution should be 0.01, accuracy should be ±0.1 or better, preferably ±0.05 or ±0.01.
Extech PH100 ExStik Waterproof pH Meter -- pH: 0.00 to 14.00pH, Temperature: 23 to 194 deg F (-5 to 90 deg C), Resolution: 0.01pH,0.1 deg, Accuracy: ±0.01pH, ±1.8 deg F/±1 deg C, Automatic Temperature Compensation, replaceable electrode. Buy at Amazon.com: ExStik Waterproof pH Meter
PH-200 Waterproof pH Meter, from HM Digital -- Waterproof, pH Range 0-14, Temperature Range 0-80 deg C (32-176 deg F), Resolution 0.01 pH, Temperature resolution 0.1 deg C/F, Accuracy +/- 0.02 pH, Digital automatic calibration, Replaceable electrode. Buy at Amazon.com: PH-200 Waterproof pH Meter
Hanna Instruments pHep4 Digital pH Tester -- Waterproof, pH Range 0.0 to 14.0, Accuracy:±0.1 pH, Temperature Range 0-60 deg C/32-140 deg F, replaceable electrode. Buy at Amazon.com: Hanna pHep4 Digital pH Tester
Techtips on pH from Eutech -- useful FAQs on using and maintaining pH meters:
Technical Tips -- pH
Useful FAQ in Technical section at the ElectrodesDirect.com website:
Natural test papers -- Cabbage Paper is made of red cabbage leaves -- alkalis change it to green, acids to red. Here's how to make it, and many others.
Other pH testing methods are phenolphthalein solution from a chemical supplies company -- NOT "phenol red" -- and pH test papers, which come in various ranges.
Buy phenolphthalein solution online from DudaDiesel Biodiesel Supply:
WVO Titration kit from DudaDiesel Biodiesel Supply: includes syringes, beakers, 0.1% lye solution, 99+% isopropyl alcohol, phenolphthalein, chemical resistant gloves:
American Weigh AMW-100 Silver Precision Digital Pocket Scale, 0.01-gram accuracy, capacity 100g, with 100-gram calibration weight, 5-digit backlit LCD, stainless steel weighing platform, power 2 AAA batteries (included), 10-year warranty -- buy from Amazon.com
"Dry-washing" can be useful where water is scarce or expensive. Ion-exchange resins for dry-washing can remove salts, soap, catalyst, glycerine and water from raw biodiesel following separation of the glycerine by-product. More information:
Using Ion-Exchange Resins For Dry-Washing Biodiesel
Top-quality DudaLite DW-R10 ion-exchange resin is available from DudaDiesel Biodiesel Supply: DudaLite DW-R10
Pumps for biodiesel -- macerator pumps, diaphragm pumps, buy online from DudaDiesel Biodiesel Supply: http://dudadiesel.com/
PumpBiz is an international distributor of over 9,000 pumps. "We have been selling pumps to many biodiesel customers over the years. We also pride ourselves in being true pump engineers with lots of knowledge about pump design and pump applications." Centrifugal pumps, magdrive pumps, diaphragm pumps, vertical, magnetic drive, metering pumps, drum barrel pumps, gear pumps, multistage pumps, self-priming trash pumps, peristaltic pumps, jet irrigation pumps and ANSI-standard pumps. "AskHenry Through our patent-pending 12-step process, he'll determine online, 24x7 - the right pump for your application."
Pumps FAQ from PumpBiz -- General Pump Information:
1. Main characteristics to be considered
2. Impeller Diameter and RPM
3. Pump Characteristic Performance curve
4. Brake Horsepower
6. Time, Temperature and Pressure effects
Little Giant pump -- This 115-volt pump will handle SVO or heated WVO, biodiesel and water. Originally designed by Little Giant as a solvent pump. Relatively fast, about 300 gph on veg oil. Intake and outlets are 1/2" NPT, making plumbing into small-diameter systems a snap.
Pony Pump from Flotec -- 115V 360 GPH Self-Priming, Model# 50AC110B, Wt. 5.0 lbs, Item# 109730, $49.99
1" Clear Water Pump -- Popular as a mixing pump with biodieselers, but note that this pump is too small for reactors processing more than 100 litres/25 gallons per batch.
Harbor Freight Tools -- 1" Clear Water Pump -- Item 1479-1VGA
Northern Tools -- Cast Iron 1in. Clear Water Pump, Model# 109955
(Warning -- very BAD at dealing with international orders!)
Northern Tool & Equipment Co. (UK) Ltd. -- 1" Clear Water Pump, Item No. 109955E
Collecting used oil
For collecting WVO, try a vacuum pump similar to what you'll find on septic service trucks. See: Enhanced Self-Priming Pump
Trash pumps work on warm days and can handle burger patties well. It's when the evening chills and you're trying to move pudding that they come up lacking. But if you're moving as much oil as a trash pump or vacuum pump can handle in the summer, the easiest thing to do in winter is switch to a process of exchanging dumpsters, removing full ones to a warm shop.
Straight vegetable oil systems
See Straight vegetable oil as diesel fuel
Quality stainless steel heat exchangers, popular for straight vegetable oil conversions -- small to large, 10 plate to 50 plate, different sized fittings available, from DudaDiesel Biodiesel Supply -- buy online:
Solenoid valves, 2-way and 3-way, stainless steel, Viton seals, from DudaDiesel Biodiesel Supply -- buy online:
Racor Diesel Fuel Heaters -- from Parker Hannifin Corp.'s Racor Division -- Heavy-duty In-Fuel-Line Diesel Heater comes installed inside a new fuel line and literally replaces the fuel line between tank and primary filter. It prevents power loss and stalls, and assists starting down to -40°F. This heated path is recommended for extended use in cold weather environments and severe conditions.
-- from Mid-Atlantic Engine Supply Corp, Cinnaminson, New Jersey.
Racor filters -- from Racor Division (Parker Online Catalog)
-- from J & H Diesel Service, Inc., Greenville, Mississippi USA
Arctic Fox Hotline Electric In-Line Fuel Heater -- Fuel warmer with internal heat tape in the fuel hose. Before starting, thaw frozen diesel fuel in just 3 to 5 minutes. Can work in conjunction with coolant heaters. 12 or 24 Volt, controlled by a switch on the dash, optional thermostat control.
Arctic Fox Hot Fox Fuel Warmer -- Simple 1-1/2" (38mm) diameter stainless steel tube inserts in the tank through a standard USA fuel gauge sending unit opening. Coolant passages inside the tube surround the fuel standpipe to provide excellent heat rise. (Assumes you're also using a block heater or coolant heater.)
Wintron XC30 biodiesel pour-point depressant for cold flow below -20°C -- from Biofuel Systems in the UK. Buy online:
Vegetable oil filters
DudaDiesel Biodiesel Supply stocks a variety of filters and strainers -- filter bags, various sizes, 0.5 micron up; 55-gallon barrel strainers, washable, from 10 micron, EZ strainers for 5-gallon buckets and 55-gallon drums, from 100 micron, washable, stackable -- buy online:
Slip-On Filter Bags: 7" x 18" x 11" 20. Part# 9830K11 -- 10 or more, $1.75 each. McMaster-Carr Catalog , Page 331:
Vegetable oil filter cones are usually made of "Pelon", a generic term which can be cotton fiber but is more often synthetic, the longer-lived ones are usually synthetic. It can include adhesive versions of both ("fusible pelon"). Both cotton and synthetic Pelon run between 1.5 and 1.75 ounce for filters. Standard Pelon is usually 1.25 ounce. The thicker Pelons can be found at upholstery supply warehouses in 48" or 96" bolts.
Filter Mesh to Micron Conversion Chart
How to make soap
The Soapmaker's Companion: A Comprehensive Guide With Recipes, Techniques & Know-How, by Susan Miller Cavitch, Storey Books, 1997, ISBN: 0882669656
Great on soap and of much interest to all biodiesellers. One reviewer said: "This was the most complete book on soapmaking I've ever read. The first to actually explain the chemistry & give formulas to figure the ratios of lye to fat." Buy at Amazon.com:
The Soapmaker's Companion
The Sunflower Seed Huller and Oil Press -- by Jeff Cox (from Organic Gardening, April 1979, Rodale Press): Vegetable oils used to be one of those items you just HAD to buy. Now here's how to make your own. In 2,500 square feet, a family of four can grow each year enough sunflower seed to produce three gallons of homemade vegetable oil suitable for salads or cooking and 20 pounds of nutritious, dehulled seed -- with enough broken seeds left over to feed a winter's worth of birds. Online at the Journey to Forever Biofuels Library.
The Mafuti Mali ("Oil Wealth") press made by Aprotec (now Kickstart) is a manual press for small-scale local production. The Hela Mk II is a high-performance manual press for extracting cold-pressed oil from sunflower and other seeds. The extraction efficiency is considered better than any other manual press -- about 12 kg of sunflower seed per hour. Easy to use, tough and durable, but not cheap -- US$265 in Tanzania. Only available in East African countries, or available for shipment by container load. Kickstart: http://kickstart.org/
Hela Mk II
The Sayari oil expeller, designed in Germany for use in Nepal, now made in Nepal, Mali, Tanzania and Zimbabwe -- 60-70kg/hr (about 15 litres of oil). At the Jatropha Website:
Equipment For Decentralised Cold Pressing of Oil Seeds -- the Folkecenter for Renewable Energy, Denmark -- 64-page report, detailed descriptions and diagrams, mostly mid-range presses from 80kg/hr and up.
PDF -- Acrobat file, 917k
Briquette Presses for Alternate Fuel Use, by Jason Dahlman with Charlie Forst, 2001 -- Design for a simple briquette press that can also be used as an oil press for seeds. Acrobat file, 2.8Mb
Oil extraction worldwide at the Jatropha website -- many oilseed presses detailed here (not only for jatropha), focus on small-scale presses:
Tinytech Plants -- Tiny Oil Mill, oil expeller with cooking kettle, Groundnut Decorticator, Sunflower Cracker or Palm Nut Cracker, Copra Cutter, made in Rajkot, India. Includes oil expeller, electrical cooking kettle with digital temperature controller, filter press, electric motor 10 HP, spare parts kit etc. Crushing capacity of 3 tonnes in 24 hours. Can be run with diesel motor. For edible oil or making bio diesel -- green energy and electricity generation. Working successfully in 52 countries. The company follows Gandhian Appropriate Technology principles. Contact: E-mail: email@example.com
KOMET Vegetable Oil Expeller, IBG Monforts in Germany -- models from 5-8 kg/hr to 70-100 kg/hr. Virtually all oil-bearing seeds, nuts, and kernels can be pressed with the standard equipment without cumbersome adjusting of screws and oil outlet holes. The vegetable oil produced generally needs no refining, bleaching, or deodorizing. Big nuts, kernels, and copra (dried coconut meat) have to be crushed first to pea size with the KOMET Crusher. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dong Kwang Oil Machine Co., South Korea -- automatic edible oil presses, from 6-10kg/hr to 200kg/hr. For sesame seed, sunflower, palm kernel, cacao, coconut (copra), olive, castor, cotton seed, maize (germ), rice bran, almond (germ), apricot (germ), soya bean, Chinese tung (germ), walnut, peanut, linseed, rape seed, perilla seed, mustard, etc. E-mail: email@example.com
SWEA A/S, Denmark. Double-screw oil press, 30 kg seed/hour, oil yield 25-38%, 6-10 litres oil/hour and approx. 21 kg cake; SWEA-15 capacity 10-15 litres/hour. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hybren A/S, Denmark. Mini single-screw press, integrated with full automatic pellet boiler. Capacity 5-6 kg/hour - 55-65 kg/hour (rapeseed). E-mail: email@example.com>
Product overview in English:
"The Manual Screw Press for Small-Scale Oil Extraction" by Kathryn H. Potts, Keith MacHell, 1993, Intermediate Technology, ISBN 1853391980
Manual oil extraction from peanuts or other soft oilseeds can be a viable enterprise for small businesses. Describes small-scale processes of oil extraction for use in rural areas, as well as ways to market and distribute the oilcake. Buy at Amazon.com: The Manual Screw Press for Small-Scale Oil Extraction
"Small-scale Vegetable Oil Extraction", S W Head, A A Swetman, T W Hammonds, A Gordon, K H Southwell and R V Harris, Natural Resources Institute, 1994, ISBN 0 85954 387-0 -- Covers a basic understanding of the science and composition of oils and economic and marketing considerations, principles of oil extraction, basic oilseed processing methods, the major oil sources with specific small and intermediate technologies for each. Results from actual third world situations are used. For example, the discussion of obtaining oil from sesame seed covers a hot water flotation method used in Uganda and Sudan, the bridge press (laboratory only), the ram press in Tanzania, the ghani process in Sudan, and a small-scale expeller in the Gambia. Technical details for each are summarized in a few paragraphs, including oil yields. Includes many drawings that are helpful in understanding each process, with a 14-page appendix listing suppliers of small-scale equipment. Complete book free online at CD3WD 3rd World Development library: http://www.cd3wd.com/cd3wd_40/
Small Scale Processing of Oilfruits and Oilseeds, by Hans-Jurgen Wiemer and Frans Willem Korthals Altes, GTZ/GATE, 1989, 100 pages, illustrated. Appropriate technology solutions developed by GTZ/GATE, the Africa Asien. Bureau in Cologne, and the Koninklijk Instituut Voor De Tropen (KIT) in Amsterdam, for use by families and villages, particularly in rural Africa. Covers the major oil plants and by-products, with case studies. Full text free online at CD3WD 3rd World Development library: http://www.fastonline.org/CD3WD_40/
Oil Extraction, Food Cycle Technology Source Book No. 1, Intermediate Technology Development Group, United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), 1987. Raw materials, traditional extraction methods, improved technologies, Appropriate Technology approach for 3rd World countries, illustrated, focus on opportunities for women. Download free from the CD3WD online 3rd World library (5.8Mb pdf):
Understanding Pressure Extraction of Vegetable Oils, VITA Technical Paper #40, by VITA Volunteers James William Casten and Harry E. Snyder. Full text online at CD3WD 3rd World Development online library:
Understanding Solvent Extraction of Vegetable Oils, VITA Technical Paper # 41, by VITA Volunteer Nathan Kessler. Full text online at CD3WD 3rd World Development online library:
Small-Scale Oil Extraction from Groundnuts and Copra (ILO - WEP, 1983, 128 p.), full text online at CD3WD 3rd World Development online library:
"Small-scale Oilseed Processing" by Janet Bachmann, NCAT Agriculture Specialist, Appropriate Technology Transfer for Rural Areas (ATTRA) -- Basic processes involved in small-scale oilseed processing, includes a low-tech method for raw material preparation using sunflower seeds as an example; information on methods and equipment used for oil extraction; notes on clarification, packaging, and storage. Sources for additional information and a list of suitable raw material.
PDF version (426 kb):
Yields: Typical oil extraction from 100 kg. of oil seeds:
Castor Seed 36 kg
Copra 62 kg
Cotton Seed 13 kg
Groundnut Kernel 42 kg
Mustard 35 kg
Palm Kernal 36 kg
Palm Fruit 20 kg
Rapeseed 37 kg
Sesame 50 kg
Soyabean 14 kg
Sunflower 32 kg
Some people use viscosity measures to check the quality of their biodiesel. Unfortunately, viscosity measures won't tell you that, excepting in a laboratory with highly accurate equipment, and even then it would be only a part-indication. Impurities such as mono- and di-glycerides have viscosity values close to those of biodiesel, and the small quantities that make all the difference between poor and good conversion can't be measured this way at the homebrew level. Viscosity can be a useful comparative indicator, especially when doing test batches. See Viscosity testing.
The Marsh Funnel Viscometer is a simple device for indicating viscosity on a routine basis. When used with a measuring cup, the funnel gives an empirical value for the consistency of a fluid. From Fann Instrument Company, Part No. 20100. (With thanks to Huseyin Turcan.)
Visgage® Pocket Viscosity Comparator oil viscosity testing instrument -- the VISGAGE checks oil viscosity on-site quickly and conveniently, without thermometers or stop watches. It can be used to check any oil from light spindle oil to heavy gear oils. Simple to operate, accuracy of 95% or better. Made by Louis C. Eitzen Company, Inc., email: sales@Visgage.com
You can make your own viscosity meter. Aleks Kac offered this advice to a Biofuel mailing list member struggling to get his home furnace working with biodiesel:
Kinematic viscosity is measured in "Stokes". You cannot measure it at home without a viscosimeter. There is a comparative way, though. Take a liquid with a known viscosity value (petroleum heating oil, look the value up in an engineering manual) and let a known volume flow through an upside-down plastic water bottle with a drinking straw glued in a hole in the screw top. Check the time it takes with a stopwatch. Do the same with your biodiesel (same volume) and compare the results. Generally a smaller diameter straw will produce more accurate results. If the time of your sample is 1.5 the time of your control sample (petroleum oil), this means its viscosity is roughly 1.6-ish that of the control sample. -- Aleks Kac, 6 Nov 2001.
You can use two straws, the second one to let air in for a smooth flow of oil -- see how we do it with small test batches of methoxide: Adding the methoxide
Tiny diesel engines
Diesel model aircraft engines range from 0.55 cc (0.033 cu in) up to about 8 cc (0.48 cu in). They fit in the palm of your hand and weigh about 250 grams (9 oz) -- great for demonstrations and student projects.
Enya's famous .15 series diesel, from Japan
These are great little engines, beautifully engineered, true compression-ignition diesels. Some of them reach 18,000 rpm.
Most models have radio control versions (remote control, R/C).
They will run on biodiesel, but not 100% biodiesel. Their standard fuel is a mixture of 30% castor oil, 40% kerosene and 30% ether. You can substitute biodiesel for the castor oil and kerosene, but it still needs the ether -- 70% biodiesel and 30% ether.
Read more, where to buy: see Tiny diesel engines.
Multifuel lamps and stoves
Lamps and stoves: Biodiesel does not travel up a wick very well, like kerosene or heating oil will, so it can't be used for ordinary wick lamps or stoves. However, tests have found that it will travel about 7cm up a wick but not more than that, and the wick should preferably be thick (about 1cm) and loosely wound -- tightly-woven commercial wicks won't work well. Biodiesel also might not work in heating furnaces or stoves, though some models work just fine, and others can be adjusted.
BriteLyt Petromax multi-fuel lanterns work just fine with biodiesel. "We are happy to report that the burn-time was over 8 hours, at the highest setting, and you did not have to re-pressurize the lantern as often as you would using other fuel-types. The performance was great, and the lantern was just as bright, and there was NO SMELL. Using the product inside, we noticed no smell at all." The lanterns also work with ethanol. 150CP lanterns, run up to 20 hours,1 pint of fuel, approx 100-watts; 500CP lanterns, approx 400-watts. There's a stove-top accessory so you can cook with them too.
We've been using biodiesel in this kerosene pressure stove for nearly two years. See one burning biodiesel here. These stoves are common in 3rd World countries ("roarers"), but they're rare in industrialised countries. Ours came from India and it cost US$8. Here are some stoves you can buy on the Internet, but not for $8.
BriteLyt Multi-Fuel Brass Pressure Stove. Same family as the BriteLyt-Petromax multifuel pressure lantern, which can burn biodiesel or ethanol. The stove has an adjustable burner, with preheater and lantern parts and a pressure indicator. Preheats in same manner as the BriteLyt-Petromax lantern. Empty weight 4lbs, fuel capacity approx. 1 qt., 8K-10K BTUs, runs 5-6 hours, on oil base fuels. Polished Brass, Matte Finish on Brass, or Nickel Plated Brass, price: $75.00.
Brass Pressure Stove -- 8.5 inches wide and 7.5 inches tall, disassembles quickly, produces around 8,000 btu, runs on kerosene or diesel fuel. Available in the US via the Internet, priice $48. No wicks, it holds a little more than a pint of fuel and will run 3-4 hours on one tankful.
XGK Expedition Stove: "This stove is tough enough to handle any fuelwhite gas, kerosene and even poor quality diesel, to name a few."
WhisperLite Internationale 600: Multi-fuel burning lightweight camping stoves -- use MSR White Gas, kerosene, jet fuel or auto gas.
Optimus NOVA Multifuel Expedition Stove -- The burner capacity is enough to prepare meals for two persons in extreme conditions. Multifuel technology means that you will find fuel anywhere in the world. Appr. 2.850 Watts/9,700 BTU. Burning time: Up to 2.5 hours at high output (one filling=0.45 L /15.5 fl.oz.).
Optimus HIKER Multifuel Expedition Stove -- "The Himalaya Stove". The Hiker is a multifuel stove, wherever you go, you will be able to find fuel for your Hiker. No conversion needed between ordinary fuels (when using methylated spirits/alcohol, simply change the burner jet). Fuels: Kerosene/paraffin, white gasoline/petrol, diesel oil, methylated alcohol/spirits and Coleman fuel. Appr. 3.000 watts/10.000 BTU. Burning time: Up to 2 hours on one filling (0.35 litres/12 oz.) at high output.
Universal Process Equipment, Inc. -- used gear at good prices: Evaporators, milling, reactors, extruders, mixers, fermenters, filtration, kilns, glass lined equipment, others, incinerators, complete processes, furnaces, glass lined equipment, heat exchangers, tanks, turbines, generators, centrifuges, chillers, compressors, dryers, boilers, pulverizers. Complete plants available. US-based, deals worldwide.
Diesel Engine Trader.com -- New, Remanufactured, Reconditioned diesel engines, Marine Industrial diesel engines, Marine diesel motors, Diesel engine spares -- the HUB for trading diesel engines, worldwide.
Flex-fuel ethanol conversion kits turn any car into a dual-fuel vehicle that will run on gasoline or ethanol or any combination of the two, including 100% home-brewed ethanol. Suitable for any vehicle with a fuel-injection system.
Flex-fuel units fit on top of the existing system, without the need to change anything. It's a simple "plug and play" device, working in conjunction with the car's computer system. It takes an hour or two to install.
The Fuel Flex International (FFI) Platinum Series III Digital E85 Conversion Kit from Jonny Energy Store has an automatic cold-start assist feature, injecting extra fuel for starting, and then switching back to normal after 30 seconds.
International -- for customers in other countries:
Books and manuals
"Alcohol Can Be a Gas! -- Fueling an Ethanol Revolution for the 21st Century" by David Blume, International Institute for Ecological Agriculture, California, 2007, 594p. -- David Blume's book is the new bible of small and medium-scale ethanol fuel production, the product of Blume's 30 years of hands-on experience with ethanol production plus four years of full-time research on all aspects of the subject. Six books in one, it covers the history, busts the myths and points the way to the future, with detailed, well-illustrated nuts-and-bolts information on making alcohol, handling the co-products, converting engines and using the fuel, plus ethanol as a business. Blume is an organic farmer and permaculturist and focuses on sustainable biofuels production. Essential reading for anyone interested in biofuels, ethanol and other. Recommended. Order online at Amazon.com: Alcohol Can Be a Gas! Read Journey to Forever's review here.
Alcohol Fuel Manual: "The Manual for the Home and Farm Production of Alcohol Fuel" by S.W. Mathewson, 1980, Ten Speed Press, out of print -- this excellent manual gives you all the information you need to get going with making your own alcohol fuel. Aimed at small-scale production, good chapters on fuel theory, everything about feedstocks, processing, fermentation, yeast, using ethanol, distillation. Free online at the Journey to Forever Biofuels Library.
Mother Earth Alcohol Fuel -- a guide to the fine points of home alcohol production, Mother's Alcohol Fuel Seminar, The Mother Earth News, 1980, out of print -- in 1978 The Mother Earth News research team started studying methods and distillation processes, testing mash formulas, designing apparatus, compiling information, converting engines and running seminars, spending upwards of US$300,000 on the project. This manual is one of the results. Free online at the Journey to Forever Biofuels Library.
"The Compleat Distiller" by Mike Nixon and Mike McCaw, The Amphora Society, 2001
It may sound like an over-ambitious title, but it's just an accurate description. It covers everything, it's clearly written, well-organised, a pleasure to read. The guys on the Distillers mailing list love it: "One great distilling book! I haven't ever read a distilling book as complete as this. Everything is covered." Another: "If you ever have thought about buying just one book on distillation, this should be that book. If you are a beginner, this book is perfect. If you have been taught the art by your old pappy livin' in those there hills, this book is for you. If you are a master crafter and know everything, this book is for you." Order online, as a PDF (Acrobat file) or a printed book:
Simple Sour Mash to Simple Alcohol Fuel -- From US still maker Revenoor, the book "reflects 60 years of alcohol production and research", with 208 pages on Sour Mash and other Mash-making prcedures, fermentation, auto conversion, recipes, latest Tax Credits and Incentive and more.
Secrets of Building an Alcohol Producing Still, by Vince Gingery, 82 pages, 1994. "Be independent. Thumb your nose at the corner gas station. Build a still, and make fuel." How to take common plumbing parts, copper sheeting, and standard electrical parts and build a 6 gallon capacity still. Buy at Amazon.com: Secrets of Building an Alcohol Producing Still
Makin' It on the Farm -- Alcohol Fuel is the Road to Independence, by Micki Nellis, 88 pages, 1979. "This book is still in demand after 18 years. Referenced in many alternative energy guides, how-to books, and in the ATF's own guide to fuel alcohol. Was used as a textbook in several community colleges." Buffalo Creek Press:
Alcohol Motor Fuel Cookbook, by Mike Brown, 141 pages, 1979 -- How to ferment grain into alcohol and modify carburetors to run on it. One of the originals, new edition. Buy at Amazon.com: Alcohol Motor Fuel Cookbook
How To Build A Junkyard Still, by Mike Brown, 45 pages, 1980 -- be your own motor fuel magnate. This book shows how to build a complete fractionating column/distillery out of a garbage can, a pipe full of rocks, the back of a toilet, and some plumbing pipe. This is the companion book to Brown's Alcohol Motor Fuel Cookbook. Buy at Amazon.com: How To Build A Junkyard Still
Alcohol Distiller's Handbook, by Herman Willkie, Joseph Prochaska, 195 pages, 1980 -- covers milling, mashing, fermentation, distillation, distillers' dried grain and solubles and laboratory control. For personal fuel self-sufficiency or commercial production. Buy at Amazon.com: Alcohol Distiller's Handbook
Tony Ackland explains what you need at the Home Distillation of Alcohol (Homemade Alcohol) site -- thermometers, hydrometers, fermenters, etc.
The Revenoor Co. -- Stills ranging from 5 gallons to 1,000 gallons, and an interesting, 3,500-word introductory article on producing alcohol as a fuel from veteran distiller Terry Wilhelm.
New Zealand commercial suppliers Spirits Unlimited, mail order:
Ray Toms' Moonshine Supplies -- Ray "in his own humble opinion is the best person to help you with any brewing problems you may come across". Mail order New Zealand and world-wide (local law is your problem). Hydrometers, Hyper Yeast, Turbo Yeast, other yeasts, and much more:
Gert Strand AB -- Distillers Yeast, including Turbo Yeast 20%, plus useful turbo yeast FAQ. Order Online (freight takes two weeks, from Sweden). E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Brewhaus Inc. -- Gert Strand AB's distributor in North America. E-mail: email@example.com
The Brewery's Technical Library for articles on brewing related topics -- see Yeasts.
Extech RF15 Refractometer -- 0-32% Brix Sucrose Refractometer with Automatic Temperature Compensation. Measures the concentration of sugar from 0 to 32% Brix. Max resolution 0.2% Brix. Only requires 2 or 3 drops of solution. Simple, repeatable measurements. Buy at Amazon.com:
Extech RF15 Refractometer
Ashcroft Bimetal Thermometers
WIKA Bimetal Thermometers
OAKTON Instruments -- pH meters, thermometers and other equipment: "best quality waterproof instruments, many for under US$100, available from stock from a wide variety of distributors".
Automatic temperature control valves
Penn Bradshaw water regulating valve, part number is nsv47ab-4. Johnstone Supply, Chattanooga TN. Phone 1 800 5250387, Price US$229.00, pay by credit card. As used with the "Charles 803" ethanol still.
Danfoss Model AVTA: -25 to +130 C, with +50 to +90 C capillary bulb, opening on rising temp. (can be reversed), differential pressure 0 to 10 bar, max test pressure 25 bar, accuracy of 1% either side.
To dehydrate ethanol to mix with gasoline or to make ethyl esters biodiesel, use Type 3A Zeolite Molecular Sieve, 4-8 mesh, which absorbs about 20% of its weight of water in a few hours. Take a liter of 95% ethanol, throw in 250g of the zeolite, swirl occasionally, filter out the next day through a strainer. US$2.05 a pound in 10 lb quantities, and reusable indefinitely. Drive off the water under a broiler for an hour. From Adcoa, 1269 Eagle Vista Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90041. In California: (310) 532-6086. Outside California: Toll Free 800-228-4124. Fax (310) 532-5404. (Information provided by Ken Provost.) Or search for "3A Molecular Sieve" at ThomasNet:
3A Zeolite Molecular Sieve, by the drum, from Biofuel Systems, UK, buy online:
See Anhydrous ethanol
There's a good primer on Solder & Brazing at Tony Ackland's Home Distillation of Alcohol site:
The Brazing Book -- A well-known classic by Handy & Harman, now updated and online in full-text. For both the novice brazer and the seasoned engineer. Five main sections: Section One, "The Idea of Brazing," explains exactly what brazing is, where to use it, and how to perform it properly. Section Two, "Brazing in Action," presents detailed photographic case histories illustrating some of the many applications in which brazing is used today. Section Three, "Choices In Brazing Materials," plus technical reference tables and related information. Section Four, "Available Reference Materials." From The Precious Metals Fabrication Group.
About.com has two useful articles on soldering by Tammy Powl. The scale is a bit different -- Tammy's a jewelry maker -- but the principles are the same.
Step by Step Soldering
Propane conversion kits
Powered By Propane Fourth (IV) Generation advanced propane conversion kits -- Propane liquid gas is a fossil fuel, but engines running on propane have much cleaner emissions, with 10-15% less carbon dioxide, 20% less carbon monoxide and 50-60% less hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxide than gasoline or petrodiesel. More power, better mileage. Powered By Propane kits are available for all 3, 4, 5, 6 and 8-cylinder gasoline engines, naturally aspirated or turbocharged, and for all turbocharged diesel vehicles.
Propane conversion kits for gasoline vehicles
Propane conversion kits for diesel vehicles
The information on this page is provided in good faith and is accurate to the best of our knowledge. It is provided without any guarantees or liability. Journey to Forever is in no way responsible or accountable for any information provided on any of the external websites referred to above.
En español -- Biocombustibles, biodiesel
Biofuels supplies and suppliers
Make your own biodiesel
Mike Pelly's recipe
Two-stage biodiesel process
FOOLPROOF biodiesel process
Biodiesel in Hong Kong
Nitrogen Oxide emissions
Biodiesel resources on the Web
Do diesels have a future?
Vegetable oil yields and characteristics
Biodiesel and your vehicle
Food or fuel?
Straight vegetable oil as diesel fuel
Ethanol resources on the Web
Is ethanol energy-efficient?