Vapor fuel technology's clear advantages
Jun 1, 2004 12:00 PM
I was with San Diego Truck Center for many years. We converted diesel engines over to “vapor” fuel for less than $1,000. We ran them on methane, butane, propane, and natural gas.
It is called “pilot fuel” or “dual fuel,” and most diesel engines can be run on diesel and any of the vapor fuels. The diesel engine needs to run on at least 10% diesel for ignition, and the remainder can be any of the above. The nice thing about it: If one runs out of the other, the diesel injection pump makes up the difference with straight diesel with no adjustments. Running vapor fuel in a diesel engine as pilot fuel doubles or even triples engine life. The engine runs cooler and quieter.
The “old boys” from the '40s use to carry a propane tank in the cab of the truck. When they needed extra power, they had a hose to the air cleaner and just opened the propane valve and got extra power for the pull.
I would like to see the trucking industry get into this technology. It is only the inconvenience of carrying another fuel tank and putting the IMCO regulator on for the duel fuel setup.
Engine application engineer
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