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Thread: My first wash. AARGGHH

  1. #1
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    My first wash. AARGGHH

    Ok so I might have done something pretty dumb. Nothing unusual there. Need some advice please. So I am always time poor and rushed trying to achieve more than I should on a weekend. Anyway I have been wanting to improve my bio for a while now so I decided itís time to wash, as I cannot store enough to let it settle in time. After scratching my head and justifying it to myself I decided Iíll just throw 15 litres of hot water into the bio brew that has already had the glycerin settled and removed. I heated the bio back up again before putting the hot water in. Ran the mixer for maybe 2 mins and turned off. I took a sample off the top to check settlement easily.

    That was Saturday.

    Itís now Wednesday night and it still looks like orange juice. I would have expected to see some settling by now, but nothing.

    How do I save the brew, or is it stuffed, or do I just need to wait longer? If I have to wait longer this is certainly not a viable method.

    I was was looking into washing with heat as I do think that worked but I feel the dangers are just too high.

    I hate leaving the power on in my shed through the week, hence my reluctance to run a bubbler.
    Regards,

    Cade.

    2006 Landcruiser HDJ100 (1HD-FTE) 20,000 on bio
    2006 Ford Courier(WLT Motor), 10,000 on bio
    2002 Landcruiser HZJ105r (1HZ motor) 250,000 on bio (sold)
    2006 Mazda B2500 (WLT motor) 80,000 on bio (sold)



  2. #2
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    ลึก ประเทศอินเด&
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    Re: My first wash. AARGGHH

    Hi Cade,
    "Orange Juice" is a typical look for water washed biodiesel.
    My experience is that, depending on the temperature and the radio station you are listening to, it will take a day or ten for most of the water to settle.

    What I would do in your situation is put a small sample of the biodiesel into a metal pan and heat it on the stove.
    I always use a thermometer to stir it just to make sure there were no water explosions and as a bonus you know what the temperature of the biodiesel is.
    Before the temperature hits 100C the biodiesel will clear and water will settle to the bottom.
    Turn off the heat.
    As the biodiesel cools it usually goes cloudy again.
    Decant the cloudy biodiesel into another pan leaving the water on the bottom behind and heat again.
    The biodiesel will once again clear and this time it usually remains clear when it cools.

  3. #3
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    Re: My first wash. AARGGHH

    Hi Tilly,

    Thanks for the confidence that I didnt stuff it. ok so that means I need to look at the thermostat on the brewer and possibly pull it off and replace with a better thermostatic control unit, as i think domestic hot water thermostats stop at 75 degrees. I will see what jaycar offer. I will try to get something that is controlled with an arduino board so I can fiddle with it. I have an abundance of solar power so I am not fussed how much juice I use heating it.

    I will try the pan thing this weekend.

    On that basis Tilly, do you think it would be possible to make a brew, wash and start drying it in 2 days?

    - morning 1 - make the brew.
    - afternoon 1 - tap off glycerine, add water.
    - morning 2 - heat brew up. tap off water.
    - afternoon 2 - heat brew up again, let it settle for the week.

    following weekend, tap off water and send it to the storage tank.

    I am going to use the shell aircraft fuel water test pills to check for water content on the finished product. I might be terribly dissapointed with the residual water, but its better than sticking your head in the sand.
    Regards,

    Cade.

    2006 Landcruiser HDJ100 (1HD-FTE) 20,000 on bio
    2006 Ford Courier(WLT Motor), 10,000 on bio
    2002 Landcruiser HZJ105r (1HZ motor) 250,000 on bio (sold)
    2006 Mazda B2500 (WLT motor) 80,000 on bio (sold)



  4. #4
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    Re: My first wash. AARGGHH

    Hi cade,

    Quote Originally Posted by Captaincademan View Post
    Hi Tilly,
    Thanks for the confidence that I didnt stuff it. ok so that means I need to look at the thermostat on the brewer and possibly pull it off and replace with a better thermostatic control unit, as i think domestic hot water thermostats stop at 75 degrees.
    If you want to heat your biodiesel to "force" dry it, anything up to 100C should be fine.




    On that basis Tilly, do you think it would be possible to make a brew, wash and start drying it in 2 days?
    You could make, settle, wash and dry in 24 hours if you wanted to. The biggest slow down would be the drying.
    Hours 1-3 Make biodiesel
    Hours 4-5 settle out the largest share of glycerine
    hour 6 start washing followed by immediately drying
    You should be able to have usable biodiesel within 24 hours if you wanted to
    This would take a bit of extra energy to force the drying stage.

  5. #5
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    Re: My first wash. AARGGHH

    so how fast does the water drop out when heating? does it need to cool before it drops out?

    a 200 litre batch in an insulated hot water tank will take some many hours to cool down. possibly more than a day? that was why I was asssuming it would take a couple of days, but if the drop out is rather quick that's awesome.

    I think the element is 4800 watts so its going to need some pretty darn good relays to switch that. I need to do a little more research on thermos and switch gear!
    Regards,

    Cade.

    2006 Landcruiser HDJ100 (1HD-FTE) 20,000 on bio
    2006 Ford Courier(WLT Motor), 10,000 on bio
    2002 Landcruiser HZJ105r (1HZ motor) 250,000 on bio (sold)
    2006 Mazda B2500 (WLT motor) 80,000 on bio (sold)



  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Location
    Fort Worth, Texas, USA
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    Re: My first wash. AARGGHH

    With my purified biodiesel distilled water poured right through it to form two layers (phases) quickly. So there maybe another issue. If soap content is an issue sodium chloride, table salt, might force a quicker seperation as if it was an emulsion. But subsequently all the table salt would need to be washed out. And if soap is an issue washing with hard water may form some calcium soap which is difficult to remove from biodiesel. I would put a 1/2 teaspoon of table salt without iodine in it into about 200 milliliters of your orange juice in a beaker with warmth stirring a bit and see if your separation occurs.

  7. #7
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    Re: My first wash. AARGGHH

    That is strange, I replied a couple hours ago and it disappeared.
    Second attempt.

    A lot of water will have fallen out by the time the biodiesel has cleared during the initial heating..
    At this point you can decant the biodiesel off the settled water and continue heating until the biodiesel is dried.

  8. #8
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    Re: My first wash. AARGGHH

    Very impressed. Thank you Tilly. Quite surprised at how temperature sensitive that little reaction is. Worked an absolute treat.

    I will now order a 30 amp relay and an electronic temperature controller to manage the temperature. Can’t wait to do this regularly!
    Regards,

    Cade.

    2006 Landcruiser HDJ100 (1HD-FTE) 20,000 on bio
    2006 Ford Courier(WLT Motor), 10,000 on bio
    2002 Landcruiser HZJ105r (1HZ motor) 250,000 on bio (sold)
    2006 Mazda B2500 (WLT motor) 80,000 on bio (sold)



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    Brisbane (North Side)
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    Re: My first wash. AARGGHH

    Thanks for the comment Wesley, I didn’t try the salt as it then required to be removed as you said. It took me years to get my head around committing the sin of putting water in my fuel, let alone salt!
    Regards,

    Cade.

    2006 Landcruiser HDJ100 (1HD-FTE) 20,000 on bio
    2006 Ford Courier(WLT Motor), 10,000 on bio
    2002 Landcruiser HZJ105r (1HZ motor) 250,000 on bio (sold)
    2006 Mazda B2500 (WLT motor) 80,000 on bio (sold)



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    South Australia
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    Re: My first wash. AARGGHH

    Cade when putting in the water do it gently, a slow running hose, moving it over the surface? If you think you need to run the mixer try a max of 2 seconds rather than 2 minutes. You may have emulsified some of your bio.
    With your method listed above on morning 2 before heating drain off any settled water first thing, most of it should be already sitting on the bottom. By heating it some water will remix by convection. After draining the free water heat and leave it. It should clear in 6 or 12 hours if kept at above 40 deg or so. Drain water again or and decant off the top into another vessel and then bubble dry.
    Johnnojack
    4WD Isuzu Jackaroo 3.1 190000km on WVO,(2019) 2 tank home built system 6 solenoids heated filter, fuel line and tank pickup for thicker oil. Mk. 9 version now and no changes planned
    Mercedes W201 190D 1986 model: no fuel mods except bigger fuel line from tank, running blend of 90% oil 10% petrol 11000km to date. Motor purrs but car has electrical gremlins

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