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Original Article:
Ethanol raises safety concerns

Please discuss the Motorcycle.com article Ethanol raises safety concerns in our Motorcycle Forums below. Use the reply button to let others know your comments or feedback on the article. Constructive criticism is always appreciated, along with your thoughts and personal opinions on the bikes and products we have tested.
 

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Ethanol is a total joke and it just shows how wrong the gov't is when it picks winners and losers in the marketplace.

Now we're going to pi$$ away billions on windmills and other crap that doesn't work.
 

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Snuggles
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Ethanol is a total joke and it just shows how wrong the gov't is when it picks winners and losers in the marketplace.

Now we're going to pi$$ away billions on windmills and other crap that doesn't work.
Interesting article. But I wonder how this conclusion has been made as higher blend ethanol fuels are used in other countries.

Not saying that Ethanol is the cure to B.S. speculative crude pricing, but it seems odd that safety concerns have been raised when there are larger test cases in other countries.
 

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The Toad
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Interesting article. But I wonder how this conclusion has been made as higher blend ethanol fuels are used in other countries.

Not saying that Ethanol is the cure to B.S. speculative crude pricing, but it seems odd that safety concerns have been raised when there are larger test cases in other countries.
Well, let's see. I takes a gallon of petroleum to make a gallon of ethanol from corn. It also takes hundreds of gallons of water. When you add it up you lose a lot of energy making ethanol form corn. It's only "profitable" because of the fed subsidy. This means that the taxpayers are paying huge prices to subsidize the farm conglomerates. Plus the price of wheat has gone up because of the switch to corn by farmers seeking to cash in on the public teat.

Ethanol is made cheaply in other countries from cane sugar. Cane sugar is subsidized in the USA and imports are highly taxed.

Ethanol from corn is just another scam foisted on us by the corrupt republicrats. Sorry for the redundancy.
 

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Snuggles
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Well, let's see. I takes a gallon of petroleum to make a gallon of ethanol from corn. It also takes hundreds of gallons of water. When you add it up you lose a lot of energy making ethanol form corn. It's only "profitable" because of the fed subsidy. This means that the taxpayers are paying huge prices to subsidize the farm conglomerates. Plus the price of wheat has gone up because of the switch to corn by farmers seeking to cash in on the public teat.

Ethanol is made cheaply in other countries from cane sugar. Cane sugar is subsidized in the USA and imports are highly taxed.

Ethanol from corn is just another scam foisted on us by the corrupt republicrats. Sorry for the redundancy.
Right, right, right. I know that part. You know I know that part. The "safety concern" is what I am questioning.
 

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Well, let's see. I takes a gallon of petroleum to make a gallon of ethanol from corn. It also takes hundreds of gallons of water. When you add it up you lose a lot of energy making ethanol form corn. It's only "profitable" because of the fed subsidy. This means that the taxpayers are paying huge prices to subsidize the farm conglomerates. Plus the price of wheat has gone up because of the switch to corn by farmers seeking to cash in on the public teat.

Ethanol is made cheaply in other countries from cane sugar. Cane sugar is subsidized in the USA and imports are highly taxed.

Ethanol from corn is just another scam foisted on us by the corrupt republicrats. Sorry for the redundancy.
Don't forget ethanol can't be transported in current pipelines because it picks up water in the process. Which means pollution spewing trucks get to transport it.

Your vehicle also gets way less fuel mileage on ethanol.
 

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The Toad
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Aging Cafe` Racer
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No NO NO, you've got it all wrong.....those helpful family farmers who run ADM and Carghill are graciously turning away from basic food crops and switching to enviromental sh*t-bomb corn crops because they want to help us.......Do you honestly think at this point our Government would lie to us?


Ethanol based fuels are the key to halting Global Warming, Foreign oil dependence, obscene oil company profits, the encroaching march of Global Communism and 9-11

Less gas millage, rougher running and increased emmissions are a small price to pay for supporting conglomerats that contribute so heavily to the current administration
 

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Ah, a topic close to my heart (& liver too).

When I was in Brazil in '05 visiting the in-laws we got to visit a Kachasa plant/distillery in Vitoria, near Receife in NE Brazil.

Since the whole north east of Brazil is covered with acres and acres of Sugar Cane, they have seen fit to run cars in Brazil on the stuff, or drink it for years now.

They have "flex" cars that start up on gas, then switch over to alcohol, or cars designed to run on straight alcohol with no gas needed.

I'm running on alcohol now too, since I got my new still. Sugar cane is perfect for making ethanol, because you don't have to convert the starch in something like corn, to sugar, by boiling it for a few hours at 172 degrees, before yeast can ferment the wort into alcohol.

Sugar Cane is full of natural unrefined sugar, that all they have to do is put in a press, and squirt out sugar cane juice, throw it in fermenter (with air lock so it doesn't turn to vinegar) and in a couple of weeks you have a 12 to 18% wash of alcohol that can be triple distilled into 50% alcohol (200 proof).

Then they have two oulet pipes in the distillery, one goes to the bottling plant for the Kaschasa, and one goes to the tanker trucks for the Ethanol stations run by the govt. Brazil is self sufficient energy wise now, no more need for foreign earl.
 

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When I was in Brazil in '05 visiting the in-laws we got to visit a Kachasa plant/distillery in Vitoria, near Receife in NE Brazil.

Since the whole north east of Brazil is covered with acres and acres of Sugar Cane, they have seen fit to run cars in Brazil on the stuff, or drink it for years now.

They have "flex" cars that start up on gas, then switch over to alcohol, or cars designed to run on straight alcohol with no gas needed.

I'm running on alcohol now too, since I got my new still. Sugar cane is perfect for making ethanol, because you don't have to convert the starch in something like corn, to sugar, by boiling it for a few hours at 172 degrees, before yeast can ferment the wort into alcohol.

Sugar Cane is full of natural unrefined sugar, that all they have to do is put in a press, and squirt out sugar cane juice, throw it in fermenter (with air lock so it doesn't turn to vinegar) and in a couple of weeks you have a 12 to 18% wash of alcohol that can be triple distilled into 50% alcohol (200 proof).

Then they have two oulet pipes in the distillery, one goes to the bottling plant for the Kaschasa, and one goes to the tanker trucks for the Ethanol stations run by the govt. Brazil is self sufficient energy wise now, no more need for foreign earl.
I'm sure the one car that is shared between a billion people runs just fine on the stuff.
 

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No NO NO, you've got it all wrong.....those helpful family farmers who run ADM and Carghill are graciously turning away from basic food crops and switching to enviromental sh*t-bomb corn crops because they want to help us.......Do you honestly think at this point our Government would lie to us?

Ethanol based fuels are the key to halting Global Warming, Foreign oil dependence, obscene oil company profits, the encroaching march of Global Communism and 9-11

Less gas millage, rougher running and increased emmissions are a small price to pay for supporting conglomerats that contribute so heavily to the current administration
Ha ha ha, you said ADM and Cargill! My pizza just jumped 10%. Bastards.

What's really funny is when that Hippy college professor from Cornell put all of this out awhile ago and was "Swift Boated". Why am I laughing? Let's see how much money did I flat out "give" to any politician last year, none. What the political impact of any of my thoughts, statements or letters to my legislators, none. Go figure.

Nice copper, just a sip please, that's the way it starts don't ya know.
 

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As one of our member's signature said so well: using food for fuel is like cutting off your leg to lose weight. Corn is $1 an ear at the store now. All the meat products we like are going up accordingly, as they use corn for feed. Meanwhile, me and the kid saw gas last night at $3.76/gal for high-test. Regular is about $3.40.

Recently I read that several trials are being started up on hydrogen fuel vehicles. Apparently GM has put almost a billion bucks into the technology. I haven't seen or heard of a better alternative yet; I'm rooting for small, safe nuke plants that charge cars and produce hydrogen for mobile fuel use. I'd like to see us conserve petroleum for plastics, building materials, roads, and other high-value applications. It's a waste to burn the stuff when it's so uniquely capable of providing much more significant benefits to us.
 

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There is a fire concern with ethanol to consider.

I have heard that the foam used to extinguish a conventional fuel fire (via smothering) will not work effectively against a fire when the fuel source contains a high percentage of ethanol. The ethanol essentially dissolves the foam.

I don't think this is a concern with most fuel mixtures, but instead can be a concern with the increased demand for ethanol (and hence increased potential for accidents involving "pure" ethanol transportation).

Would 20% formulations be enough to not let a conventional foam smother out a vehicle fire? I dunno. I thought Longride was (is?) a firefighter. Maybe he could chime in? Or someone with some hazmat experience?

Found a source:
The Associated Press: Ethanol Fuels Fire Concerns
 

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MsCuddy, that is a nice still. Copper is such a cheery metal.

You may get better results actively chilling your distillation column via a water jacket.

Or so I heard. Or didn't hear. These are not the droids you are looking for.
 

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The Toad
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Nice.

When I was in Brazil in '05 visiting the in-laws we got to visit a Kachasa plant/distillery in Vitoria, near Receife in NE Brazil.

Since the whole north east of Brazil is covered with acres and acres of Sugar Cane, they have seen fit to run cars in Brazil on the stuff, or drink it for years now.

They have "flex" cars that start up on gas, then switch over to alcohol, or cars designed to run on straight alcohol with no gas needed.

I'm running on alcohol now too, since I got my new still. Sugar cane is perfect for making ethanol, because you don't have to convert the starch in something like corn, to sugar, by boiling it for a few hours at 172 degrees, before yeast can ferment the wort into alcohol.

Sugar Cane is full of natural unrefined sugar, that all they have to do is put in a press, and squirt out sugar cane juice, throw it in fermenter (with air lock so it doesn't turn to vinegar) and in a couple of weeks you have a 12 to 18% wash of alcohol that can be triple distilled into 50% alcohol (200 proof).

Then they have two oulet pipes in the distillery, one goes to the bottling plant for the Kaschasa, and one goes to the tanker trucks for the Ethanol stations run by the govt. Brazil is self sufficient energy wise now, no more need for foreign earl.
Are you going to be offering samples of your new patented furniture polish?
 

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"There is a fire concern with ethanol to consider."

Foam and Ethanol is sorta moot.

I was the Fire Marshal on an aircraft carrier for a year or so. A very entertaining year or so.

OK, Firefighting 101. Fire requires three things: Flammable material, Oxygen and Heat. Some say there is a fourth, called "Free radicals" or some such, but that's in the 200-level course.

Aqueous Film-Forming Foam ("A-Triple F") is not the first choice for any fire except where you are facing a pool of the flammable substance.

The foam acts by sealing the burning "stuff" off from air. CO2 works the same way, but has very limited time before it disburses. This was vividly illustrated in the recent racebike crash video somewhere on this site. CO2 is the preferred application for electrical fires, since it doesn't destroy the circuitry.

Powder (like Potassium BiCarbonate, or PKP "Purple K") works by getting between the flammable molecules (those "free radicals") and the oxygen. It's mostly effective in knocking down flames, so you can get to what is actually hot enough to burn, which takes us to:

Water. Water extinguishes fire by removing the heat. The most effective application of water is called "high velocity fog," which absorbs a terrific amount of heat.

However, petroleum products tend to float, so water doesn't work so well, and hitting "delicate" equipment with water tends to destroy it. Also, with Class 'A' ("Alpha") fires (which leave an ash) the flammable material must be watched carefully to make sure the fire is really, truly out to prevent what is called a "re-flash". This is the same thing you do to a campfire when you spread all the ashes out to make darn sure there are no live coals left.

Class 'D' ("Delta") fires are metal fires. Like magnesium. Water, and a bunch of it, is the only thing you can use to try to put out a Delta fire.

Hope this helps.
 

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Super Duper Mod Man
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I can assure you that most towns probably have no foam, the wrong type of foam, or degraded foam in their stocks as we speak. It is just too expensive for most communities to store and replace, so they don't bother. That is what Mutual Aid is for. Call the people in that have the stuff, but then it is pretty much too late. Another factor is that most firefighters and officers just don't see this type of fire very often, and when they do they don't have the equipment or manpower to fight it effectively. In my experience, every fire is a learning experience. We see what goes wrong on one fire and fix those problems and the next fire has another set of things that go wrong. I doubt that ethanol is any more dangerous than the thousands of other chemicals that run our roads daily.
 

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Aging Cafe` Racer
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I was on Repair 5 for GQ when you were Fire Marshall, I was the AFFF Station Operator and Burnerman for the Relight Team on the '77 Med Cruise. On the '75 Cruise I was BT Messenger...

I keep thinking of that chubby Ensign or JG with the red hair and beard but he was M div. Officer not A gang. We had Ensign Burns for awhile then LT.JG. Dan Mutty, he was pretty cool as I recall.
 
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