• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Biodiesel as a heater fuel?  RSS feed

 
Idgarad Lyracante
Posts: 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Taking a liking to Perfection oil heaters and their design. I know some people have used diesel in those instead of kerosene. I am wondering, would forms of bio-diesel burn clean enough to use as a heater fuel?

Would be nice to resurrect a new generation of fuel heaters in the style of the old Perfection heaters. With new laser cutting technology I was thinking of a single glass cylinder with a laser cut, enameled outer shell that slides over the glass. The key is redesigning the fuel tank with modern sensibilities like tip over protection. Any thoughts on resurrecting that style with an open hardware style movement for a generation of decorative, but functional bio-diesel burning heaters (or for that matter Kerosene.) Better yet a selection of heating elements that can be placed in the base.

Base + Heating Option + Riser Option + Top Cap Option.

Be nice to see that style come back. I digress. Bio-Diesel viable as a heater fuel?
 
allen lumley
pollinator
Posts: 4154
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
58
books fungi hugelkultur solar wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Idgarad Lyracante : Yes, But- Speaking as one who has helped make Biodiesel, it is very important that every stage of the process is closely followed.

Many of the steps in making bio-diesel require letting the Product stand, and allow the various weights of the processing to settle out and seek its own level!
I strongly suspect that just a little of the glycerin that is Also made at the same time will prove to turn your final product into gel on cold days this will happen
anyway, but the affect of the glycerine will be to make it happen sooner and at a warmer temperature than that of pure Bio-diesel.

Carefull watch over the Bio-diesel as it settles out in super clean and clear glass jugs will allow you to separate the layers, giving you very pure bio-diesel,

The initial affect of glycerine mixed in Bio-diesel should be to increase the Viscosity of the bio-diesel, I can think of a couple of possible field tests for viscosity
that might tell you if you had Glycerine contamination, but it would task my abilities as a simple wordsmith to describe. Allowing the Biodiesel to be warm and
given time to settle out is about the surest one !

Finally, every batch of used cooking grease will vary from batch to batch, and you could very well find that in order to get a good clean burning flame today
you might need to add 20 - 30 % Kerosene with this batch and more with the next tank full from the next batch !

Short version, I have used the old perfection wick hero heaters, and may do again, many of the local Amish use them by preference and several local hardwares
stock the wicks and glass parts, even some Isenglass but I personally would be a little scared to give Bio-Diesel or admixture a try, expecting that I would end up
cold dirty and to many peoples minds smelling nasty ! Y.M.M.V. For the Good of the Crafts !
 
Brett Andrzejewski
gardener
Posts: 318
Location: Buffalo, NY
29
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
allen lumley wrote:
Short version, I have used the old perfection wick hero heaters, and may do again, many of the local Amish use them by preference and several local hardwares
stock the wicks and glass parts


Yeah, it seems like extra work to make biodiesel when you can get heat from a cleaned vegetable oil/grease.
 
Abe Coley
Posts: 96
Location: Missoula, MT
3
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
i heat my house with straight veggie oil, filtered through old tshirts and bed sheets, burnt in a Norge oil stove. Works great and i don't have to mix nothin.
 
allen lumley
pollinator
Posts: 4154
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
58
books fungi hugelkultur solar wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Abe C. : Yes, but! The original topic was used (cheap ) veg oil ! Used oil, already exposed to high temps, needs additional and carefull treatment to make Bio-oil!

This in no way diminishes the clean burn you get with new veg oil, plus- to use any used vegy oil requires a few steps a pure unheated oil may be used without !

This in no Way diminishes the work done by those who are working hard to re-cycle a used, waste-stream component ! For the good of the Crafts ! Big AL
 
Abe Coley
Posts: 96
Location: Missoula, MT
3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
used veggie oil from restaurants is all i burn. some of it is almost black and full of charred bits, presumably because they're frying things really hot. do a search for "waste oil evaporation heater" and you'll see people burning old motor oil, tranny fluid, movie theater popcorn butter, old candles, tarm just about anything oily or greasy.

again, no treatment necessary other than filtering. just pour in some old fryer oil, light it up with 1/2 cup kerosene, and within a few minutes it'll be ripping hot.

here's a vid i made of my heater in action: http://youtu.be/RG7sEb_amq4
 
allen lumley
pollinator
Posts: 4154
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
58
books fungi hugelkultur solar wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Abe : Statistically, the most common reasons for black Veg oil is/are 1) Going to long between changes , often there is one night a week where the closing,
clean-up crew changes the oil. 2) Too high a cooking temp (and tired oil) and 3)not cleaning the system well with oil change! 4 ) other contamination, If
the fry baskets rest on the counter or are chromed, or nickel plated and not stainless steel !

I am able to high grade the oil I get by selling it to the restaurants, and buying it back by its color, leaving a sample of the used oils color and the virgin oil
I supplied ! This allows me to be able to reclaim a very pure glycerin which I trade for sealed top 55 gal drums, which i re-sell to bulk honey places !

My comments on viscosity still stand ! Perhaps you are storing All your filtered oil indoors and not in an outside tank ?! Otherwise I can not account for your
success rate in winter temperatures without using a pour point depressant ! For the crafts ! Big AL !
 
Abe Coley
Posts: 96
Location: Missoula, MT
3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Idgarad, I'd say go for it. Find an old heater you like, mock up a copy of it, and start selling them locally, see where it takes you. I know tons of folks want oil burners for their garage or shop so they can burn used motor oil. I sold two old coleman oil furnaces on craigslist this spring and got like 30 calls from people who wanted to buy them, and I had 'em priced at $350 and $450!

I personally am not a huge fan of the "smokeless" Perfection-type heaters because they don't have a chimney to vent the combustion gasses. Especially if I was gonna be burning motor to heat a garage or shop, I'd definitely want a chimney.

Allen, what do you do with your oil once you've processed it?
 
allen lumley
pollinator
Posts: 4154
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
58
books fungi hugelkultur solar wofati woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Abe Coley : I really had given up on this as not worth all the effort when I fell into a deal that lets me have access to my land-locked piece of property, Another neighbor
works my sugar bush and a third neighbor runs everything through His Sugarhouse !

This has become a very hush hush operation, so as to not offend family friends of many generations ! Big AL
 
Hey! Wanna see my flashlight? It looks like this tiny ad:
FT Position Available: Affiliate Manager Who Loves Permaculture & Homesteading
https://permies.com/t/69742/FT-Position-Affiliate-Manager-Loves
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!