Acetone Fuel Additive

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blueblood

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Have an poster on another site referencing this site  http://pesn.com/2005/03/17/6900069_Acetone/

to discuss his adding acetone to improve fuel economy up to 20%. He is going to use in Cummins Dodge first to check and then plans to go to motorhome. Any opinions/comments ?????? ???
 

Ron

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I think I would rather wait until more data is available before I would even consider this item.  Could be an expensive engine repair if it doesn't work properly. ;D
 
J

jscuzz

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Acetone sounds like a way to increase temperatures to me. Cat says it is running our 3126B at the temps it was dsigned for. Guess I'll wait with Ron.
 

DonJordan

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If acetone does everything the article claims, how come the diesel engine manufacturers aren't falling all over themselves to recommend its use to their customers - particularly the long-haul truckers where a 20-25% increase in miles per gallon would be a bonanza for them? ??? ??? ???
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Well, I don't believe a word of it, but the quantities of acetone LaPointe suggests can hardly harm anything either.

I'm sure there may well be some situations where adding a substance like acetone might improve vaporization, but if there were an easy answer like this that worked across the board, the engine and vehicle manufacturers would be climbing all over each other to  introduce  an automatic acetone injection system and then fuel blenders would bring out this wondrous fuel that increases mpg by 10-15%. 
 

Karl

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According to many research papers, acetone in limited quantities (2-3oz./10 gals. gasoline) will increase mileage in the range of 5-20% due to the more complete vaporization of the gas. A secondary benefit is reduced emissions. Some years ago, a fellow developed a system that heated the fuel/air mixture to a vapor before sending it into the cylinders and got some very impressive results. Basically it was a mixing box that sat on top of or near the carburetor and was heated by the exhaust gases. However, because this explosive vapor was produced outside the engine, some very real safety issues prevented further development. A detailed explanation of gasoline, octane ratings, additives and other data (probably more than anyone wants to know), can be found here: http://chemistry.about.com/gi/dynam...tp://www.turborick.com/gsxr1127/gasoline.html. There are some concerns worth noting however: First, the un-burned gasoline serves to remove deposits from the valves and also helps cool them and the combustion chamber. You'll lose this benefit, so it becomes important that you use a high quality, highly refined gasoline to begin with. Texaco is the name that keeps popping up, but I'm sure there are others equally good. Secondly, the more complete burning of the fuel mix will generate additional heat, so the cooling system needs to be up to snuff. Thirdly, the increased ease of vaporization can cause two problems: 1) the risk of icing is increased (carbureted and throttle-body injection systems only) and 2) vapor lock can occur more readily, but this is only a problem with engine mounted fuel pumps that suck the gas thru small diameter tubing; not with modern tank-mounted fuel pumps that pressure feed the fuel rail or throttle body.? I am going to try it in my toad and will report the results as they become available.
 

Ned

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Karl,

What would be the impact on a diesel that the OP was referring to?

Don't blow up the Stealth :)
 

Karl

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Ned,
Supposedly this will work for bunker burners too, but because of their extremely high compression it is necessary to start out very small, on the order of 1/2oz. per 10 gals diesel fuel and work your way up from there until no additional benefit is seen. Because acetone has a slower flame front than gasoline, there is little if any chance that it will cause detonation or any other serious side effects. You could theoretically run either a diesel or gas engine on pure acetone, but it would be nigh impossible to start, would require a drastic change to the fuel/air ratio and ignition timing, be godawfully expensive, and produce much less power. I'd be happy to see a modest (5-10%) gain in mileage. The biggest challange will be to find fuel that is consistent wherever you travel so you don't have to keep adjusting the amount used. Another good point brought out was that few, if any, filling stations wait long enough for the water to separate out before bringing a new fuel supply on line. Maybe Pilot and Love's have a system worked out, due to the huge volume they sell. It would be interesting to hear from folks with 'war stories' about contaminated fuel. Anyone have problems with the big guys or is it just the small ones??   
 

Ned

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It sounds like a lot of work for little reward.  How does the cost of acetone compare to that of gas or diesel?

We've never had any water in our fuel/water separator and we buy from mostly large truck stops, but occasionally from a smaller vendor when we can't avoid it.  I consider it a non-problem for us.
 

Karl

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Acetone will run about $6-$7/gal at places like Home Depot. Using the $7 figure and a maximum amount of acetone at 3oz. per 10 gals., you're only adding 1.64 cents per gallon. At, let's say, $2.00/gal for fuel and an increase in mileage of only 5% that comes out to a reduction in fuel cost of almost 8.4 cents per gallon ($.1 savings minus $.0164 cost of acetone = $.0863). The calculations required are pretty straightforward. Check your mileage with 1oz. per 10 gal, up it to 1.25oz, and so on until you have reached maximum benefit.  Or use larger increments and extrapolate. You should see a flattening of the curve near maximum benefit, so your savings should remain fairly constant even if the fuel quality varies somewhat from place to place and you use the same ratio over and over. Running until near empty isn't necesary as long as you keep track of how much of what concentration you have in the tank when you fill up again, and calculating the net concentration based on that figure and how much fuel and acetone you add when filling up. Heck, I bet you could write a little program to do that in about 10 minutes, and post it here for all to use! Don't you just love the way I volunteeer your services??? ;)
 

Ned

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A natural application for a spreadsheet.  I think I'll stick with straight diesel fuel.
 

Karl

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Early results are in!

With a 640:1 ratio of gasoline to acetone, mileage increased by roughly 5% - o.k., but not great.
With a 300:1 ration, it jumped to a 17% increase!!  :D
Granted, this is after only 750 miles, but I'll continue the testing for many thousands of miles. Next ratio to be tested will be 166:1. Also noticed a significant increase in power and no detrimental side effects.

I'll keep you posted. 
 

Karl

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Bill,

In the interest of making this test as real-life as possible, I'm not using a single source, but getting gas wherever necessary; not the same station or brand. It's just not practical (unless you're Ron Ruward, who's rig can hold 300 gallons - enough to heat a house in Wisconsin all winter ;D  ;D).
 

Ron

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kkolbus said:
Bill,

In the interest of making this test as real-life as possible, I'm not using a single source, but getting gas wherever necessary; not the same station or brand. It's just not practical (unless you're Ron Ruward, who's rig can hold 300 gallons - enough to heat a house in Wisconsin all winter ;D? ;D).

I think you got the wrong Ron there.  Our Eagle only holds 1/2 of 300 gals. ;D
 

BernieD

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kkolbus said:
Bill,

In the interest of making this test as real-life as possible, I'm not using a single source, but getting gas wherever necessary; not the same station or brand. It's just not practical (unless you're Ron Ruward, who's rig can hold 300 gallons - enough to heat a house in Wisconsin all winter ;D  ;D).

And not only does he carry enough fuel, he even carries his own utilities with him.
 
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