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May 26, 2017, 06:55 PM
flyin' Dude
fastphil_v's Avatar
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Discussion

E0 Gasoline


Just curious what your experiences are with gas without ethanol. Pure gas (E0 for short) is available and there is a list of stations nationwide at www.pure-gas.org. As a gearhed with a lot of experience with gas engines big and small, old and new, I've seen the destruction ethanol can cause. So I recently bought a couple gallons of E0 93 octane when I visited my folks in rural Texas. The best thing by far is that the E0 smells like gas as I remember as a kid, not the pungent aroma of modern gas that you can't wash off. The downside is that, so far, I am not getting the same rpm on my DLE20 as with E10 (~200 rpm less). Caveat that with the fact that I am using it on a new engine that only has a little over an hour of runtime so of course is not optimally tuned. Further complicated by the fact that I've switched back and forth between E0 and E10 (and I do have to adjust the needles when I switch) - but I'm doing that on purpose to figure out if I want to make the switch before I retune my other engines.

So for me, the jury is out. If power ends up similar, I'd quickly give up the smell of E10, but I'd probably put up with the smell of E10 if it makes more power.

What are your experiences?

Phil
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May 26, 2017, 08:01 PM
AMA 537620
ChillPhatCat's Avatar
I would first suspect that you're monkeying with the needle too much... try getting it broken in first and then run it a bunch of flights on each, consecutively and make a determination on performance. It could be the 93 octane is less energy dense than the E10... If you are not already, you should try running E10 93 octane against E0 93 octane to get the best comparison.
May 27, 2017, 01:08 AM
UAS Pilot - FAA# *******HRK
CryHavoc's Avatar
My first question is what is the octane of the E0 you are running? I suspect its lower than 93 which stands to reason as our model airplane gas engines are not designed to gain anything from higher octane fuels. Another reason is that you have to run more fuel through the engine when running methanol so the net is a gain in power. The reason for octane is to delay the burn to prevent pre-ignition in high compression engines. Since our engines compression is not high there is no net gain from high octane fuels.

However, if your goal is better smelling, long shelf life, and cleaner running fuel then "pure-gas" is the way to go. I run VP SEF94 for this reason and if I notice a few hundred RPM less so be it (actually I'm doing some other things with my engines but that's another story). I have to transport my gas can in a closed vehicle so gas that doesn't smell is priority.

Mike
May 27, 2017, 02:28 AM
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I can only agree to the "stick with it and don't retune"....

I am mostly playing with really tiny gassers (modified glow engines, smallest a 5 cc fourstroke) but if there is one thing I learned from all that, is that if you make a change to the tune of the engine (and that includes EVERYTHING you change) it takes a couple of tanks before the engine has settled, even if the engine itself has plenty runhours to be considered completely broken in....
May 27, 2017, 09:37 AM
flyin' Dude
fastphil_v's Avatar
Thread OP
Thanks all for the advice. I am indeed after better smelling, longer shelf life, etc. I'm confident in getting it tuned with either gas and I understand the chemistry, octane, etc. I'm more interested in others' direct experience with E0 gas vs E10 in these small engines. Do you typically retune if you switch? Do you gain/lose rpms? Is the E0 you use consistent in quality or have you had issues? I'm trying to decide whether to make the switch permanently. Phil
May 27, 2017, 08:39 PM
flyin' Dude
fastphil_v's Avatar
Thread OP
Well, I switched over my other gas plane to E0 today and ran it a good 10 minutes in the garage. On this well-broken-in engine, I actually saw a few more rpm on the tach but did need to tweak the needles. But this engine has also been finicky of late after months of smooth running, so I'm still not sure I have a good baseline for comparison. Too windy to fly here lately but I am making the switch and will give it some time to see how it goes. Still interested to hear from others on the subject. Mind you, this is E0 pump gas, not the $16/gal stuff sold in big box stores. So nice to not stink after spilling a few drops on refuel...
May 29, 2017, 01:25 AM
UAS Pilot - FAA# *******HRK
CryHavoc's Avatar
The thing is, its not the ethanol that smells. Its the additives that they add to the gas itself like detergents and all the other crap. Its also what causes the gas to gel and turn to varnish faster just sitting. There are other reasons one may not want Ethanol but if its because of the smell of the gas its the wrong reason. Now I don't know whats in your "pure gas" from a commercial pump but I suspect its going to have some stuff in it. That's why I use VP from a can. Its more expensive but has ZERO additives of any kind. Having said that, I have seen VP 100 octane fuel available directly from pumps out in Arizona for things like all the off-roaders ( dirt-bikes, atvs, buggies, pro-trucks etc.... as well as the boaters) so maybe "pure gas" is something like that???

Personally, I don't have any problem at all with Ethanol and know that VP sells C85 which is a true 85% Ethanol ( Commercial pump E85 is not very consistent, anywhere from 51-83%) but have never seen a can of it. At some point I want to start playing around with some if I can get a hold of it. I may just end up making my own though as I can do it in small batches as I need it.

Mike
May 30, 2017, 10:00 AM
flyin' Dude
fastphil_v's Avatar
Thread OP
I agree it's probably all the other crap that smells and causes problems. The pure-gas is generally sold in farming communities as there are lots of old tractors, trucks, etc around there. Farmers come fill up their 55gal barrels and take it back to the farm for their old machinery. And at $3-4/gal it is reasonable.

At any rate, I'm not claiming this is magic potion - just thought I'd give it a try and ask others if they have had any experiences with it. As for me, both my 20cc engines are now using it and running fine. And my fingers don't stink, lol.


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