View Full Version : Boats running on WVO (waist vegetable oil)

09-07-2004, 05:02 PM
I am contemplating doing an vegeteble oil conversion on my car.

I reallized that boats would be the ideal place for a WVO conversion.

I was wondering if anybody had done this on thier boat, or knew of somebody that had done this to their boat.

for info about Biodiesel and WVO conversions go to http://www.biodiesel.org/


imported_Steven Bauer
09-07-2004, 05:09 PM
I know a guy who runs his VW Rabbit on Waste Vegetable Oil. He gets it free from Susan's Fish And Chips restaurant. He offered to pay for it but they won't let him. :D


Dave Fleming
09-07-2004, 05:12 PM
Susan's Fish And Chips restaurant.I bet he has every cat/raccoon/possum within 20 miles following his car!

09-07-2004, 06:36 PM
Two comments, I remember reading a while ago about someone doing a long distance--possibly transatlantic--on biodiesel, possibly the chemically cracked kind and not the heated and filtered kind (although I have not figured out if there's a difference). I think it was a high funded thing--the boat was a RIB and there was a support vessel for the fuel seemed pointless at the time, still does really (the transat I mean).

The second point: A fish and chip shop in portland???? I'm going tomorrow.

09-07-2004, 06:45 PM
There is a WB article on a Harry Bryans boat named Rambler which is run on biodiesel. He gives ashort side bar on running with biodiesle versus regular diesel and lists some contacts for how to get started. Check out the magazine index onthe main page.

09-07-2004, 06:46 PM
Originally posted by Dave Fleming:
I bet he has every cat/raccoon/possum within 20 miles following his car!And me!

09-07-2004, 06:46 PM
Relevant to my musing above, this is the website I found that mentions chemical cracking (with lye) http://www.veggiepower.org.uk/page208a.htm seems like a lot of work.

I've read about peheating, but never seen any instructions.

09-07-2004, 06:49 PM
Peheating might adversely affect the aroma. :D

Dave Fleming
09-07-2004, 07:00 PM
Peheating might adversely affect the aroma. Yeah, don't burn the garlic!

Scott Rosen
09-07-2004, 07:21 PM
A few years ago, Oldport Marine in Newport, RI, ran a launch that used biodiesel. It sure did smell strong and food-like. Imagine the smell of a greazy spoon diner firing up its grill at the begining of the day.

I couldn't get used to it in the short time I was there.

imported_Steven Bauer
09-07-2004, 08:26 PM
Susan's Fish and Chips is a funky place. It's in a converted transmission shop, concrete block walls, picnic tables, toys and games for the kids. You can get deep fried lobster tails, or clams or even ice cream! :D Yep, deep fried ice cream. And if you have a good day fishing they'll serve up whatever you bring in for 5 bucks. But the best of all is on Mondays and Tuesdays you can get two fishburgers for two bucks! A hamburger roll with lettuce, tarter sauce and a fresh piece of fried haddock. Yum. Good chowder, too. See you there.


09-08-2004, 10:09 AM
You have to remember also, that biodiesel is NOT Waste Vegetableoil , and biodiesel MADE from waste vegetable oil is NOT the same as from virgin oil.

All of them work nicely, and if you filter and preheat waste oil you can power a diesel just fine. You have to keep some regular diesel around to start and stop the motor with though. Using biodiesel, you do not have to preheat it. You can run on it 100%.

If you use biodiesel made from virgin oil, it has little odor and puts out almost no particulates. i.e. no black soot. In fact it's so clean, you have to check your fuel filters to make sure they havent been clogged because the old gunk in your diesel system is coming out!

Here is a site with LOTS of references to biodiesel:


PS: The website referenced, http://www.biodiesel.org/, is for the National Biodiesel Board, an organization run by the Soybean lobby. They are suspect in some ways with regard to how they obtained certification with tax payer money, and are now charging for membership. Browser beware.

[ 09-08-2004, 11:11 AM: Message edited by: TimothyB ]

09-08-2004, 10:09 AM
Toronto Hydro (the electrical distribution company in Toronto) runs all of its diesel trucks (including the big stuff) on bio-diesel. I've heard them comment that the only possible issue is that using it in older engines will degrade rubber gaskets.

Biodiesel fuel

In September 2001, we began a large-scale pilot project using biodiesel in about 80 fleet vehicles. By July 2002, we had extended this project to include our entire diesel fleet of 400. As a result Toronto Hydro-Electric System received the 'Award of Excellence' during National Transportation Week 2002. The award is presented to an individual or corporation that has made an outstanding contribution to the betterment of the transportation industry in areas such as safety, environment, education, technology, policy or corporate development.
Toronto Hydro Green Fleet (http://www.torontohydro.com/corporate/initiatives/green_fleet/index.cfm)

09-08-2004, 02:42 PM
There's a local autocrosser going to nationals with his bio-diesel VW Jeta.

Don't know if he's planning to refill at McDonalds as he goes. smile.gif

09-09-2004, 03:43 PM

couple of things.

First, Biodiesel is not straight vegeteble oil. it is a fuel that is made by mixing methonal with vegetable oil (with lye as a cytalist). Biodiesel can be poured directly into any diesel. (check out From the Fryer to the Fuel Tank (http://www.joshuatickell.com/))

In order to run a car only on WVO you must have the engine warm. and preheat the vegetable oil. try greasecar.com (http://www.greasecar.com/)

dmede Which issue are you refering to?

sorry about the biodiesel.org link


09-09-2004, 04:39 PM
Looks like biodiesel has the following advantages and disadvantages:

- keeps the engine cleaner (this is really good for marine engines that are used infrequently)
- reduced environmental impact, including marine spills

- May clog filters etc. when put into existing engines.
- May degrade gaskets/hoses made of natural rubber or older synthetic rubber.
- Difficulty in finding/transporting the fuel in sufficient quantities.

I noticed that biodiesel.org has a page on marine applications.
Biodiesel marine (http://www.biodiesel.org/markets/mar/)

Full marks to these people for having a honest discussion of the problems involved in their pilot project. (There was a sidebar on "Introducing Biodiesel in the Great Lakes".)

09-09-2004, 06:14 PM
Originally posted by Hwyl:

The second point: A fish and chip shop in portland???? I'm going tomorrow.Thanks for the indirect tip Steven, MMM Good, even my kids liked it. Three people $23

09-10-2004, 10:25 AM
The reason I spoke ill of the NBB is for 2 basic reasons:

1) They spent a few million of taxpayer money to get EPA certfication for biodiesel, and now charge thousands of dollars per year to be a member to have access to that certification. Without it you can't make biodiesel (though the judge is still out on that) and have the EPA not fine you. Personally, I think the certfication should be released into the public domain.

2) They lobby for Soy Diesel. Sounds great right? However Soy is actually an inefficient oil producer and this is being done solely to benefit the big Agro interests that have large investments in soy growing and harvesting equipment. In reality, rapeseed (canola) is the best seed to use in semi temperate climates for oil production.

Essentially, I believe if you were to REALLY get into this business to make FUEL you would be leveraging everything you could, including the fact that rapeseed produces much more oil than Soy:

<font face="courier" size=2> kg oil/ha liters/ha lbs/acre gal/acre
corn (maize) 145 172 129 18
cashew nut 148 176 132 19
oats 183 217 163 23
lupine 195 232 175 25
kenaf 230 273 205 29
calendula 256 305 229 33
cotton 273 325 244 35
hemp 305 363 272 39
soybean 375 446 335 48
coffee 386 459 345 49
linseed (flax) 402 478 359 51
hazelnuts 405 482 362 51
euphorbia 440 524 393 56
pumpkin seed 449 534 401 57
coriander 450 536 402 57
mustard seed 481 572 430 61
camelina 490 583 438 62
sesame 585 696 522 74
safflower 655 779 585 83
rice 696 828 622 88
tung oil tree 790 940 705 100
sunflowers 800 952 714 102
cocoa (cacao) 863 1026 771 110
peanuts 890 1059 795 113
opium poppy 978 1163 873 124
rapeseed 1000 1190 893 127
olives 1019 1212 910 129
castor beans 1188 1413 1061 151
pecan nuts 1505 1791 1344 191
jojoba 1528 1818 1365 194
jatropha 1590 1892 1420 202
macadamia nuts 1887 2246 1685 240
brazil nuts 2010 2392 1795 255
avocado 2217 2638 1980 282
coconut 2260 2689 2018 287
oil palm 5000 5950 4465 635 </font>

So, soy produces about 48 gallons per acre, as opposed to rapeseed which produces about 127 gallons per acre. I'd say thats a hell of a difference and reason to use rapeseed as the primary seed crop for biodiesel.

The rest, including the sultry Oil Palm, produce oil that tends to gel too much in cold weather, whcih is why rapeseed is at the top of the list for temperate growing climes. The next step would be something like an additive for Palm Oil that would make it not gel in cold weather. An additive that was also vegetable derived. Then we really would have something.

09-10-2004, 04:31 PM
I agree about finding an vegetable based additive that would the fuel from jelling in cold temperatures, I thought about setting up to make it for my TDI but decieded against it as it is only usable for half the year.