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Removing alcohol from gasoline

Discussion in 'XJ DIY How-To Instructions' started by KA1J, Jul 14, 2019.

  1. KA1J

    KA1J Member

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    I have been removing the alcohol from gasoline and it works perfectly, zero issues and the bike absolutely runs better. I didn't figure it out, I'd come across it while looking for ideas on how to maybe do so. In case you didn't know how to do this and how easy it is, here's some youtube links on how it's done.

    In short; Alcohol likes water better than it likes gasoline. Alcohol will migrate to the water instantly and leave the gas.

    So you add tap water to the gasoline in a container (I use a 6 gallon glass carboy so as to do 5 gallons at a time), mix the water well, let it set 10-15 minutes after shaking well, so the water/alcohol separates from the gas which settles out above. Siphon the water/alcohol out and you have pure gas left behind.

    It's so easy to do that I now only use this in my bikes when gassing up from home (I try to only gas up from home & if I gas up outside of home, I try to only add as much gas as I need to get back home with an empty tank) & this pure gas is what I use in all my lawn & 2 cycle equipment.

    IMPORTANT: Use the highest octane gas available, you loose a couple octane points when you remove the alcohol. I have 93 available so I use that.

    I like this link for explanation.


    Here's how to determine how much alcohol is in the gas. I'd personally use larger amounts, it's more easy to get worthy numbers, but this procedure is exactly right.


    Here's the youtube search, pick any, some are better than others, watch several, but the two above are all you need to see.
    https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=removing+alcohol+from+gasoline

    There you have it.

    Gary
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2019
  2. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    my higher octane gas has no ethanol in it. we only have a 10% max on ethanol here so I stand to lose up to 10% of my fuel converting …….or thinking the other way paying 10% more for my fuel .

    what do you do with the water and methanol mix when your done "extracting it from your fuel?

    waste the precious water pay more for fuel and have hazardous waste to dispose of to accomplish what?
    Why is ethanol in gasoline?

    Ethanol is added to gasoline because it is a renewable source of energy and helps to decrease carbon emissions and reduce America's energy dependence on other countries. It also acts as an oxygenating agent, which reduces carbon monoxide and soot emissions produced when fossil fuels are burned.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
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  3. cgutz

    cgutz Well-Known Member

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    Fortunately they still sell regular gas with no alcohol where I live. My XJ has only had one tankful of alcohol laced gas in its life (I am the original owner).
     
  4. Polock

    Polock Well-Known Member

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    where does the chlorine and iron go that was in the water? will i have to soak my pistons in vinegar?
    maybe use distilled water that i make over in my other laboratory :)
     
  5. k-moe

    k-moe Pie, Bacon, Bourbon. Moderator Premium Member

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    It stays in solution with the water.

    I don't get the issue with just burning E-10 as intended. It's never caused me any bother, and the XJ series were built to be able to run it to begin with.
    90% of carb trouble can be traced to an improper Winter storage routine, regardless of what fuel is used.
     
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  6. Polock

    Polock Well-Known Member

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  7. KA1J

    KA1J Member

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    There's zero methanol in the gas in Connecticut, it's all ethanol and it's added at the distributor when the trucks are loaded for delivery to the stations.

    One of the youtube videos shows the accurate way to determine how much ethanol ( determining methanol would be the same process). But in short... take 10 ml of gasoline in a graduated cylinder, add to it 2ml of water, agitate/shake the container. When the water & gas have separated, look at the height of the water/alcohol. Subtract the 2 ml & what you have left that has separated is the alcohol and you now have the %.

    Here's a video showing that & that the gas they tested had 10%

    All our pumps say up to 10%, I tested the premium from my local Citgo and Sunoco, and both had 10% alcohol in it.

    The answer above regarding the iron and chlorine is correct, it's staying in the water. If someone still had doubts, use water filtered with Zerowater or Brita (Zerowater is more eeffective than Brita).

    Cheers!
     
  8. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    but why do it?
    , then I am going to lose 10% of my fuel
    stepping up a grade in fuel is 30 cents more a gallon for me. I pay 2.58 for the low grade and ans 2.88 to step up 30 cents plus 28.8 cents(10%loss of fuel) 58.9 cents
    if I want to be anti alcohol I would just get the super without any alcohol.

    Then what do you do with the waste product?
     
  9. k-moe

    k-moe Pie, Bacon, Bourbon. Moderator Premium Member

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    I'm not advocating the practice (ethanol removal from fuel) but the alcohol and water can just be left out to evaporate. None of the other components of the process will be present in enough quantity to be of concern for the hobbiest (there will still be some water in the gasoline, but not enough to cause too much trouble). Now if you're running a farm or business and using this precess that is a different ballgame.

    The one factor (but not the only factor) that keeps me from recommending the process is that the hobbiest (e.g. us fellas) have no way to test the octane of the resulting gasoline other than by burning it in the engine and hoping that it doesn't detonate. If our bikes had modern engine management systems then it wouldn't wory me at all, but they don't. Even guesstimating by starting with a higher octane fuel is no guarantee of hitting your target. Chemistry is fun though.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
  10. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    it was interesting enough but I would liked to have some solid numbers from his demo. how much gas he started with how much alcohol he removed . something more than everything above the bottom of the line



    12.8 oz alcohol per gallon is max to be expected.
     
  11. KA1J

    KA1J Member

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    Around here the "Super" still has 10% alcohol, 100% of the gas at the pumps has 10% alcohol.

    After all the reading I have done on it ( I did a lot ), 10% alcohol added gives between 2-3 octane boost. The 93 octane here has 10% so minus that and you end up somewhere between 90-91 octane with pure gas. Stewart's shops in NY sell 91 octane pure gas at every pump, I'm assuming it's the same as the 93 octane here, minus the alcohol octane boost.

    If you look here https://www.pure-gas.org/ and click on "stations" & the states & provinces open below. Click on CT ( my state) you see all the high octane numbers, that's racing fuel & I wouldn't use that in my tools or bikes. Now click on NY and see all the 91 octane pure gas & those are for vehicles/tools. So again, I take the 93 octane minus alcohol to be around 91 octane, same as in NY.

    Why do it? For me, I get more MPG with it and that makes it attractive, especially because I'm not doing anything negative to the rubber parts of the fuel line/carb.
    Another reason is pure gasoline does not attract water, water settles in the lowest part of the XJ tank and causes rust issues eventually. Alcohol in the gas attracts water and it separates, just like in the removal process.

    I just pour the water/alcohol out on the driveway. alcohol evaporates as does the water. I do wait till there's 100% separation before draining the water so a small amount of gas comes out as I remove all the water & impossible to get all the water & not loose a tsp of gas. You lose that much gas from the hose when it drips after a fill-up.

    As the X has a much higher compression that the standard Maxim, and it doesn't ping and has a noticeably better start, MPG & power than I get with 10% alcohol gas, I'm just fine with it and it works great.

    I'm enough of a doubter to wonder just how accurate the gas octane is compared to the stated amount. Some gas was in the hose when you fill the small tank, how did that affect the final octane # that you ended with. Just too many variables for it to be a reliable #.

    All I can say is with my higher compression engine, the bike loves it.
     
  12. Polock

    Polock Well-Known Member

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    i looked up the station closest to me
    "Updated by casey, July 02, 2019 10:03 CDT
    4.59 a gallon for ethanol free gas as of july 2 2019"
    yeeow, no thanks
     
  13. McTavish

    McTavish Member

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    ethanol free $3.29 9/10 here. 3 stations in a 3mi. radius. 2 wawa, 89 oct. 1 shell 90 oct.
     
  14. KA1J

    KA1J Member

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    There's a racing shop 15 miles from me, in Taftville, CT that sells 105 octane alcohol-free from a 55 Gal drum, but at $10/Gal. The Hardware store sells 91 oct pure gas at something like $18/gallon can for your chainsaws & mowers. They also sell it pre-mixed for 2 cycle at the same price. None of us need 105 octane and I'm not convinced racing fuel is good for our engines.

    The filling stations with 90-91 pure gas at the outdoor pumps are where you get the fair & noninflated prices.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2019
  15. ShootyMcBang

    ShootyMcBang New Member

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    I use STA-BIL 360 ethanol treatment and stabilizer. one ounce for 5 gallons. It is about $4-$5 for a 10oz. bottle
     
  16. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I use sea foam about 10$ for 16 oz. when I winterize my bike I start running tank low then fill with nonethonol super about 3 tanks.
    much easier than doing the removal thing and considering our bikes where built then carbs rebuilt in the era of ethonol gas it is not a big deal.

    of course if I owned an old indian or HD from the 20s 0r 30s it may be a different story
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2020
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  17. ShootyMcBang

    ShootyMcBang New Member

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    .........sea foam is an excellent product. it does what it says it will do.
     

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