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Old 04-07-2012, 05:15   #16
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Re: Ethanol and Outboards

My modus operandi:

Fresh gas (week or less old). Add a bit of SeaFoam to the tank. When not in use, close the tank vent. After use and flushing, drain the carbs. Draining the carbs is more thorough than running them dry, and is better for the seals/gaskets. Usually there's some sort of knob or screw to turn to drain the bowls.

Works for me.
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Old 04-07-2012, 08:34   #17
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Re: Ethanol and Outboards

The best use of ethyl alcohol is to drink it. I have ruined hoses, seals, gaskets, rubber & plastic parts, that have dissolved to goo in contact with ethanol.

Acohol is a solvent, a very good one. The basic problem is there are two classes of solvents, and two classes of plastics, the first is resistant to petroleum, the second is resistant to Alcohols.

Very few substances are resisitant to both. Although there are some blends that are a little resistant so they disolve slowly.

Oil doesn't mix with water, alcohol does, alcohol mixes with either water or oil, but not both. water mixes with alcohol, it also mixes with salt, but adding alcohol to water precipitates the salt....Try it at home, you will see. Take a glass of water, slowly add a cup of salt while stirring until no more disolves, then add a cup of alcohol, the liquid becomes cloudy, and the salt settles to the bottom.


The concept of using alcohol as fuel, comes from the old westerns, that comically would add a jug of moonshine to the tank, when they ran out of gas, and for comic effect, the car would run impossibly better on the moonshine.

In real life the concept doesn't work that way, 1. Alcohol burns too fast for internal combustion engines. 2. It has lower energy content; 80K btu's vs 114K BTU's for gas. 3. It burns hotter, disolves lubricants, (like the 2 stroke oil you added to save your rings), and destroys seals, like head gaskets, fuel lines, etc...

Not to mention the cost, around $8.00/gallon, if it wasn't for millions in subsidies, ethanol fuel would never have happened.
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Old 04-07-2012, 14:02   #18
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Re: Ethanol and Outboards

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Originally Posted by capn_billl View Post
The best use of ethyl alcohol is to drink it. I have ruined hoses, seals, gaskets, rubber & plastic parts, that have dissolved to goo in contact with ethanol.

Acohol is a solvent, a very good one. The basic problem is there are two classes of solvents, and two classes of plastics, the first is resistant to petroleum, the second is resistant to Alcohols.

Very few substances are resisitant to both. Although there are some blends that are a little resistant so they disolve slowly.

Oil doesn't mix with water, alcohol does, alcohol mixes with either water or oil, but not both. water mixes with alcohol, it also mixes with salt, but adding alcohol to water precipitates the salt....Try it at home, you will see. Take a glass of water, slowly add a cup of salt while stirring until no more disolves, then add a cup of alcohol, the liquid becomes cloudy, and the salt settles to the bottom.


The concept of using alcohol as fuel, comes from the old westerns, that comically would add a jug of moonshine to the tank, when they ran out of gas, and for comic effect, the car would run impossibly better on the moonshine.

In real life the concept doesn't work that way, 1. Alcohol burns too fast for internal combustion engines. 2. It has lower energy content; 80K btu's vs 114K BTU's for gas. 3. It burns hotter, disolves lubricants, (like the 2 stroke oil you added to save your rings), and destroys seals, like head gaskets, fuel lines, etc...

Not to mention the cost, around $8.00/gallon, if it wasn't for billions in subsidies, ethanol fuel would never have happened.
There,.
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Old 04-07-2012, 14:23   #19
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Re: Ethanol and outboards

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A cheap carnival trick based upon obvious physics and a bit of subterfuge. A bit of good salesmanship for his business, but he should be ashamed. He's probably selling a water-absorbing chemical, which the OEMs are very unhappy with (some have been shown to cause engine damage).

1. The solubility of ethanol in gasoline is strong function of temperature; see this EPA document, but there are other sources.
http://epa.gov/oms/regs/fuels/rfg/waterphs.pdf

2. The air cools the gas, causing the water to fall out of solution. The descending currents are more cold than water. Also note the condensation on the glass; not water from the air, but gasoline condensing on the cooled glass, coming from the gasoline vapors on the warm side. Obviously you could blow air on glass all day and make no drops. Note they are on the inside, but there are NONE on the outside.

Your gas tank is not going to cool from air blowing inside that tank. No way. Neither is the carb. That is clearly a false test.

3. I suspect he pre-saturated the gas with water. He may have done this on purpose. He may have used old gas (it looks old) from tanks, which is probably saturated.

So he has lied (though he may honestly not know how he did) and watchers may be hoodwinked. I hate this sort of bad-science video. While separation is surely possible, his model has no validity.

For your own home test, take a quart mason jar (no plastic lids--the gas will go through the plastic), add a lid with a 1/16" hole to simulate a tank with a vent, and wait a season. It won't separate. If you use a larger hole or no lid it may separate. The gas will evaporate down to nothing, losing ethanol first, and the water will then drop. But the gas must evaporate to the point (at least 50%) where the gas is clearly bad already. This is why carbs are more vulnerable and should be run dry... not the carnival trick.

Please, don't take my word for this; try it yourself.
OH YA! He lied like a rug - and my late model outboard only died because it was lied to. Water is trouble and so is the corrosion. OH! lets not forget about the fact that the elastomers that make up the seals on the fuel system are not tollerant to ethanol, same as most plastic tanks on our boats.

After multiple failures of my Merc 2-stroke 15 HP, I switched to marina gas certified as NO ETHANOL. End of problem. This is a no-brainer.

It is utterly baffeling that our idiots in government thinks its totally OK to destroy your boat motor (money $$$) and leave you stranded miles offshore (possible death).
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Old 04-07-2012, 15:06   #20
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Re: Ethanol and Outboards

I know a guy who repairs and sells small two-cycle engine machines. He says ethanol in gas has been very, very good for business....

I'm from Iowa, so I appreciate some of the challenges farmers face, but putting ethanol in gas is just bad policy in my opinion. In terms of alternative fuel, I think biodiesel has more promise and I think plastic type products are a better alternative use for corn.

It's all about the politics and despite the government subsidies I know many farmers who wish the government would get out of the farming business. Many I know say that the inefficiencies just about equal the subsidies, but once the policies are in place, most simply have to play by them.
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Old 09-07-2012, 07:55   #21
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Re: Ethanol and Outboards

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Originally Posted by Therapy View Post
There,.
Fixed it for you.

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Thanks, I meant to hit the 'B'.
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Old 09-07-2012, 08:06   #22
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Re: Ethanol and outboards

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Originally Posted by Nicholson58 View Post
OH YA! He lied like a rug - and my late model outboard only died because it was lied to. Water is trouble and so is the corrosion. OH! lets not forget about the fact that the elastomers that make up the seals on the fuel system are not tollerant to ethanol, same as most plastic tanks on our boats.

After multiple failures of my Merc 2-stroke 15 HP, I switched to marina gas certified as NO ETHANOL. End of problem. This is a no-brainer.

It is utterly baffeling that our idiots in government thinks its totally OK to destroy your boat motor (money $$$) and leave you stranded miles offshore (possible death).
I'm sorry I was unclear. I thought the video was a false demonstration. I like good science. However, I agree that ethanol in fuel is poor public policy and troublesome in outboards. Read some of my posts:

Sail Delmarva: Ethanol and Gasoline and Diesel - References

Sail Delmarva: Al Gore and ethanol--So, now it's not a good thing, now that I'm out of politics?

Sail Delmarva: Gasoline Filtration... and Vent Filtration Too?

And yet some folks do fine with it. Some is practices. Some is difference in engines. Some is additives (a few really do stop e10 corrosion). But I would rather it just went away.
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