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Thread: Biodiesel training course in Canberra, Sept 20,2008

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2008

    Biodiesel training course in Canberra, Sept 20,2008

    A Biodiesel training course is being held in Canberra on Sat 20th of September. It is being given by Jonathon Thwaites who is experienced in making his own biodiesel and also setting up large reactors for commercial users and biodiesel Co-operatives in WA.

    There is no shortage of very reliable information on the internet and thru the many experienced members of this group, who are always extremely willing to give their valuable help. This course provides an additional opportunity to access someone who is extremely experienced at making biodiesel and teaching others how it is done.

    This course is aimed at showing you how to make biodiesel consistently and reliably and give a good grounding in the theory and safety requirements as well.

    If you are interested in coming, please contact me via this forum privately or contact Jonathon Thwaites directly. The course details and location are given below. There is a fee of $100 to cover costs.



    by Jonathon Thwaites' The University of Western Australia, Alternative Technology Association
    Course No. 21, Saturday 20th September 2008, 1 pm to 5 pm Canberra - Narrbundah,

    Garden City Motel, Jerrabomberra Ave, Narrabundah. Close to the intersection of Hindmarsh Drive and Jerrabomberra Av.

    1:00- 2:00 Biofuels and Biodiesel introduction
    2:00 - 2:30 Biodiesel demo, make a 2 litre batch in class
    2:30 - 3:00 Afternoon tea and discussion
    3:00 - 3:30 Theory on biodiesel chemistry, testing
    3:30 - 4:00 Finish biodiesel lab
    4:00 - 5:00 Legal aspects, the future of biofuels, conclusion etc

    Contact: Jonathon Thwaites, Univesity of WA, 6488 7932 or

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005

    Re: Biodiesel training course in Canberra, Sept 20,2008

    How did the training go?

    I was talking to a friend that other day and we were dicussing a "Shed Day" to talk about biodiesel and I mentioned this training day.

    He was rather surprised that it was being offered at a cost??? Biodiesel knowledge we thought was always open source?

    So what was offered on this training day and those that attended... What were your thoughts?? worth the money??? and if so is there another planned in the future?
    HDJ80 (aka Kiwipete)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005

    Re: Biodiesel training course in Canberra, Sept 20,2008

    Jonathon is based in WA and he takes time out from his day job to run these courses.
    There are costs in providing the venue, printing course notes, insurance and transportation.

    $110 used to cover 3 presenters (I was one, discussing vegetable oil as diesel fuel) as well as printing, venue, insurance and travel. 5 years later, he has trimmed the cost by $10, despite being in the East.

    His motives are not "to increase his personal fortune".

    I believe that it represents good value from someone who has registered with ATO to produce biodiesel at his home and has been making biodiesel for 7 years or more.

    the last time I saw Jonathon was around 2 years ago at the last Biofuels workshop, at which I was presenting, at UWA.

    Life is a journey, with problems to solve, lessons to learn, but most of all, experiences to enjoy.

    Current Vehicles in stable:
    '06 Musso Sports 4X4 Manual Crew Cab tray back.
    '04 Rexton 4X4 Automatic SUV
    '2014 Toyota Prius (on ULP) - Wife's car

    Previous Vehicles:
    '90 Mazda Capella. (2000 - 2003) My first Fatmobile. Converted to fun on veggie oil with a 2 tank setup.
    '80 Mercedes 300D. 2 tank conversion [Sold]
    '84 Mercedes 300D. 1 tank, no conversion. Replaced engine with rebuilt OM617A turbodiesel engine. Finally had good power. Engine donor for W123 coupe. (body parted out and carcass sold for scrap.)
    '85 Mercedes Benz W123 300CD Turbodiesel
    '99 Mercedes W202 C250 Turbodiesel (my darling Wife's car)[sold]
    '98 Mercedes W202 C250 Turbodiesel (my car)[sold]
    '06 Musso Sports Crew Cab well body. [Head gasket blew!]
    '04 Rexton SUV 2.9L Turbodiesel same as Musso - Our Family car.
    '06 Musso sports Crew Cab Trayback - My hack (no air cond, no heater).

    Searching the Biofuels Forum using Google
    Adding images and/or documents to your posts

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2008

    Re: Biodiesel training course in Canberra, Sept 20,2008

    I think Tony has answered the cost part of the question. As to the value of the course, I found it valuable but the others who went would need to answer for themselves. Any money left over goes into the Perth Sunfair project, the annual alternative technology fair that Jonathon organises.

    I would say that those who attended were seeking an introduction to biodiesel. What they got from Jonathon was a good grounding in the chemistry of biodiesel, the science of it, the technology, the safety issues, the legal aspects and ecological benefits. Jonathon clearly demonstrated not only how to make it but also why you should make it.

    There are no plans for another course but I am sure it could be organised. Interestingly, almost half the attendees were from out of town.

    Only a couple of the attendees had heard of the Biofuels forum, so I sent them all home with the link as it is an extremely valuable resource in an avalanche of information out there. I am sure some of these people would be interested in a shed day.

    Thanks for your interest


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