View Full Version : 2003 Magna AWD 30% Ethanol 70% Petrol

23rd August 2008, 05:35 PM
Have been running the Magna on 30% Ethanol for a couple of mths with no problems so far. A lot more power.

Also have been running my generator on 50% Ethanol and 50% Petrol and lot cleaner no smell. Have to run with a little choke but runs a lot better.

Will take the Magna up to 40% next mth, see how high I can go with out mods.



Tony From West Oz
23rd August 2008, 11:38 PM
Can you tell us about your ethanol supply please?

Home made
What are you using to make the brew?
Did you make the still yourself? Any photos?
What amount of ethanol can you make per batch? per week/month?

Denatured with?
Any issues with blending?

I look forward to reading more of your experiment.


Captain Echidna
24th August 2008, 01:31 PM
My understanding of ethanol is it requires more fuel to be mixed with air than petrol. If used in a carby car for instance engine damage is likely due to lean mixtures.
Would a mixture display (they type that reads the exhaust gas sensor, say jaycar kc-5195 or kc-5300) be a good way to check the car is making the necesary adjustments to compensate for the ethanol? that way if it starts to read lean, it may be time to review the mix?

25th August 2008, 09:29 AM
Hi Tony,

I bought this ethanol from Hunters in Tasmania also Walkabout Industries carry it too.

There is a range of denatured ethanol you can buy. I just bought what they had in stock which was 1000 litres of 95% ethanol and 5% methanol. Next time I buy I will get 1600 Litres which is two pallets 8 x 200 litre drums, and will go for 98% ethanol 2% petrol. I paid $1.66 per litre for the first lot.

I have made small amounts of ethanol at 87%, and use dried corn cornels to remove the water with a shop bought still. But it is illegal to have a large still and make ethanol.

Spoke to the ATO to get a licence but I have no chance. So until the law changes will just buy it. The local petrol stations wonít sell it. So in the mean time I am supporting CSR Sugar and improving my health by reducing emissions.

I bought a book from Amazon called ďAlcohol Can Be A Gas written by David BlumeĒ, so just putting it into practice.

Spoke to Sugar Australia and got a sample of sugar dust, which is a waste product, can land that in Tasmania for $550 a tonne allowing me to make ethanol for about $0.70 cents litre. In Qld you would get it for less the half that due to freight costs.

Also growing sugar beet, but too early to give you yields.

In the book David tells you that a (24 height) to (1 diameter) ratio column with packing will give you 95% every time. Six inch diameter is big enough to allow you to produce a months worth of fuel in one day.

I am building a large methane digester which I will run in the generator instead of liquid fuel also I have gas hot water plus a gas stove to feed. Then no more LPG to buy and Iíll have my own gas ready for when the law changes.

Hope that gives you some insight into my thinking.



25th August 2008, 10:20 AM
Hi Captain Echidna,

From what I have been reading the Air / Fuel ration of;

Gasoline is about 13.4 to 15 to 1, ideal range about 14.5 to 1
Ethanol is about 23 to 9 to 1, ideal range about 9 to 1

I have leant my book to a friend so can quote exact at the moment.

So in the car the ECU can make adjustments on the fly. In Brazil they run 25% ethanol in all petrol sold. Any fuel injected cars can run up to 25% no problems.
As you raise the amount of ethanol two things can happen.

1) From what I have read as there is less emission the o2 sensor so the ECU increase fuel use thinking the car is running lean reducing economy.
2) The engine check light will come on.

The solution is a $300 dollar Flex Converter & David Blue from Alcohol Can Be A Gas talks about a Oxygen sensor modifier. Also the best way is an add on chip like Uni Chip with proper tuning.

So what I am doing is watching my fuel economy and seeing how high I can go with out conversion. At 10% I get better fuel economy.

My main concern is with the generator as I am expose to the pollution it produces regularly also looking to reduce the pollution the chainsaw makes.

And with the generator have to run with some choke but the exhaust gas and engine temperature are a lot cooler.

Iím a computer geek so just running with some choke solves my problems. In the Book has a whole chapter on carbie modification.

Later on I plan to make my own dual fuel car running on natural gas or 100 alcohol with compression ratio of 12.5 to 1. With compressed air instead of using a turbo or super charger.

But have to make methane first.

By the way I have a friend that runs a carbie lean and use ethanol with water injection to reduces the temp with good results, Heís got my book.



4th September 2008, 01:24 PM
In the book David tells you that a (24 height) to (1 diameter) ratio column with packing will give you 95% every time. Six inch diameter is big enough to allow you to produce a months worth of fuel in one day.

I would be a bit cautious about using this information. With packed distillation columns, the separation is related to the height of packing, the type of packing, but not the diameter of the column. The diameter affects the flowrate of gas/liquid and a couple of other internal processes, such as flooding.

Simply making the column narrower does not necessarily reduce the required height of packing.