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dasadrew
21st February 2012, 15:40
http://fbhvc.co.uk/bio-fuels/

It's all very well listing the different types of rubber which are ok and not ok, but it doen't help much if you want to buy fuel hose and the seller can only give an answer like "Well, it's a sort of rubber compound mate, innit"

Drew

BTW, Burlen Hydrin-based Stromberg Diaphragms are OK!

dasadrew
9th April 2012, 17:46
Out of curiosity I decided recently to start my own Ethanol (E10) test. The different booklets all talk of "not recommended" for some materials but I couldn't ever decipher whether this means
a) "Shock Horror your car will be going up in flames from a fuel leak within the week", or
b) "You'll have to be replacing your fuel hoses in 10 years instead of 20 years".

At a classic car exhibition in Germany in January this year I bought three different fuel hoses from one of the stands. One steel braided, one stainless steel braided, and one rubber with woven in reinforcement. All sold as purpose made and certified fuel/oil hoses.

I put sections of all three bits of rubber (steel sheathing removed) into a jar of E10 purchased from the filling station (and which will end up in the neighbours lawn mower!)

Well, it's now been less than 3 months and I'm afraid to report that hypothesis a) seems to fit the bill better than b).

Although the two rubber bits from the braided hoses are still ok with no visible signs of detrioration, the rubber hose is completely shot. The inner diameter has increased from 8mm to 9mm and the external diameter from 14mm to 16mm. The rubber itself is sort of glitschy and it seems to be separating itself from the woven reinforcement.

This rubber tube is marked as DIN 73379 Type -2A for fuel and oil. Sure, the type of rubber is Nitrile, which is "not recommended" by FBHVC, but this deterioration in a few weeks is very alarming!! If my amateur, but real, test is anything to go by, then this deserves more than a "Not Recommended".

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kryten
9th April 2012, 18:20
There could be a whole new application for 'member enlargement, that could soon be filed as a patent by a pharmaceutical company.... if only the soaking period could be reduced......E20 perhaps? Or E85 for porn star applications (although that 'afterglow' cigarette could be VERY hazardous)....

:)

BKB
16th April 2012, 21:45
Drew,

Love your initiative to test but how do you know that the problem is the E10 fuel and not just fuel in general ? Could be crap Indian rubber. Any chance of repeating the test on the remaining bit of pipe with non-ethanol fuel ?

Sorry to be a pain but I'm just having a bit of a battle with FBHVC in respect of their recent additive tests so the fuel problem is right on my front burner at the moment.

Oh, any chance of getting the results by Friday ?



Only kidding (smiley thing, smiley thing) Sorry, can't work out how to inbed emoticons

Peter

V Mad
16th April 2012, 21:55
About a year ago I bought some 8mm rubber fuel hose from the local motor factors. This started to swell within days and I took it back. They asked if fuel had got on to the outer layer, and I said probably yes. He said ah, only the inner is fuel proof. Not really suitable for classics because they often have fuel leaks etc. I thought he was joking but maybe not?

martin
16th April 2012, 22:41
Drew,

Love your initiative to test but how do you know that the problem is the E10 fuel and not just fuel in general ? Could be crap Indian rubber. Any chance of repeating the test on the remaining bit of pipe with non-ethanol fuel ?

Sorry to be a pain but I'm just having a bit of a battle with FBHVC in respect of their recent additive tests so the fuel problem is right on my front burner at the moment.

Oh, any chance of getting the results by Friday ?



Only kidding (smiley thing, smiley thing) Sorry, can't work out how to inbed emoticons

Peter




Hi Peter, I'd be very interested in your battle with FBHVC re addative tests, the results are not out yet, what are they arguing about ? Martin.

dasadrew
17th April 2012, 15:00
Drew,

Love your initiative to test but how do you know that the problem is the E10 fuel and not just fuel in general ? Could be crap Indian rubber. Any chance of repeating the test on the remaining bit of pipe with non-ethanol fuel ? .....
Peter

Hi Peter, your observation is very good. In actual fact, when I started out I was only looking for a suitable fuelpipe, so bought three different ones at the exhibition. As it is, I think, acknowledged that E10 is the most "aggressive" of petrols, I stuck the bits into an E10 jar. I can repeat the test with "normal" petrol (I think that E5 is considered normal here). The results won't be ready by Friday, but the swelling didn't take too long, so I should know more in 2-3 months.

The material (Nitrile) is already known to be E10 sensitive, it was mainly hte speed at which the degradation occurred which shocked me. I'll consider Chris' comments too though.


.............only the inner is fuel proof. Not really suitable for classics because they often have fuel leaks etc. I thought he was joking but maybe not?
That's very interesting! It's difficult to test just the inside, but I can maybe cut some pieces of the inside and outside and do the test again.

At the moment, my personal situation is clear - I have two types of hose that haven't reacted at all (yet) so I will use thos for my fuel lines. I'll leave the test pieces in the jar and so should have a few months advance warning of any future deterioration.

73stagman
17th April 2012, 17:38
Hi Dasa...
Just for your info when we do oil / hydraulic hose comparison / suitability tests we do not immerse the hose in the liquid / oil. Strangely the cover material on a hydraulic hose is never compatible with hydraulic oil. the reasoning is apparently that in theory at least the two should not meet! The cover of the hose must be able to stand up to atmospheric conditions, UV, and abrasion but the oil is supposed to stay inside. I have seen hydraulic hose assemblies used inside the oil reservoir and thus submersed in oil completely bare of cover material which had been deposited in the bottom of the tank as black gritty sludge. I think your tests should be conducted with the fuel inside the hose and suitably bunged up.
I have also seen reports that if you buy high octane unleaded fuel there is zero ethanol added to these fuels but the cost is much higher. I suspect we are being forced to go down this road!

dasadrew
17th April 2012, 20:14
That backs up Chris' info. As it is difficult to rig up a test with a hose piece sealed hermetically with fuel inside, I'll separate the outer and inner and immerse both in fuel to see where the swelling occurs although, on the sample, it does rather look like both inner and outer have swelled.

BKB
17th April 2012, 21:12
Martin,

The results were out yesterday by way of a press release - try the FBHVC website for the details. They are not arguing about anything, unfortunately it is me who is the unhappy one.

For those who are not up to speed here, the FBHVC have been running tests on fuel additives to assess which will give protection against the corrosive properties of ethanol/petrol mixes (in this case by testing additives in E10). I saw the press release, which presents the results as 'following our tests these five additives have been given a grade A rating and will receive FBHVC endorsment' (I paraphrase but not by much). I thought that this was a little bit short on actual information so I contacted the 'for more information person' by e-mail to ask how the tests were performed, what was the control and were there any failures or near misses. I was told that no further details could be released but that the control was 'straight E10' and the test probe was of steel. Apparently the arrangement with those putting up additives for test was that if they did not pass muster no further details would be issued - not even that they took part in the tests. I was also told that if I wanted to know more about the test I should buy a copy of the standard testing procedures from the NACE website at $31. Now I'm not very happy about this as I know that the Club is a member Club of FBHVC and pays nearly 1400 to them in yearly subscriptions and to be told to go away and buy the procedures annoyed me a little. They may be covered by copyright but a brief synopsis should not be breaking any trusts.

I persevered but was then told that FBHVC 'do not feel it necessary to give any further details'.

Now, I have checked the web for details of the test which they did and it is indeed a test where corrosion of the test pieces is directly measured and compared to a corrosion table which is presumably included in the test protocol papers, so point 1 is that they did measure actual corrosion - which is good. However, the test seems to be a comparative one and not an actual one (my reading of the situation) and as the first tests which they performed were scrapped part way through due to 'contamination' - and I have been told that the problem may have been that the results being obtained were not showing any difference between the control and the test fuels with additive - then I really want a bit more explanation as to what this was really put down to, how the tests were modified to alter the results being obtained and whether this was just a case of changing the tests until an expected result was obtained. I do not necessarily doubt the final conclusion but unless the results are made available, how do I really know what to make of them ? (I seem to remember a similar argument in respect of global warming and the UEA test results).

Now, there is all sorts of 'stuff' on the additive manufacturers websites and on the web in general about the effects of ethanol in fuel, it absorbs water causing corrosion of fuel lines, tanks, etc, it separates on long term storage in fuel tanks, it becomes acidic, it dissolves rubber components and deposits the remains in your carburettor, it eats babies (no, I put that in for a laugh) so I'm unsure of what to make of it all. Hence the enquiry of exactly what FBHVC was testing for. However, what they seem not to have tested for is whether normal (ie non-ethanol mixed) fuel causes the same corrosion as E10 (or even E5) fuels and whether we have been putting up with a certain level of potential corrosion anyway since the days when Stag was built, or whether the problem is greater than the problem of fuel lines corroding due to Winter salt. A simple control of 'non-ethanol fuel' would have given us so much more info.

A further point to note is that the tests are stated not to look at material compatibility issues - which is Drew's problem with the rubber hose - and I suspect that these issues will completely outrank any potential corrosion problems. In which case, I had better order a set of those steel braided hoses from Drew.

Finally, I know that Miller's market a fuel additive called Tank Safe which I understand is designed to prevent tank corrosion during lay-up of your classic car. As this is not named as an endorsed product, do I assume that it failed the test - and how close was it to a pass - or do I assume that it was not put forward for testing. It would be useful to know as laying-up cars is what I tend to do.

Any comments ?

Peter

martin
17th April 2012, 21:45
Hi Peter, FBHVC are a bit like doctors - do no harm ! If they list all those products that were tested, there would be commercial implications, possibly even legal action. I'm content to take their advice and leave it at that. I'm more than content for SOC to remain as members. :) Martin.

dasadrew
17th April 2012, 22:09
Peter,

if you want some bedtime reading and a "proper" report on Ethanol effects on fuel systems, then try this for size! From page 48 on there is a lot about the the whys and hows of Ethanol. Obviously a lot of stuff specific to airplanes, but a lot of stuff applicable to more mundane machinery!

http://easa.europa.eu/safety-and-research/research-projects/docs/miscellaneous/Final_Report_EASA.2008-6-light.pdf

Several effects are not due to the fuel mixture itself, but the storage of it and the way it separates into individual components.

Drew

BKB
18th April 2012, 13:46
Thanks Drew,

I'm downloading the report now - it's taken two minutes so far and looks like another three hours to go !

Note to self, For Christ's sake buy a better computer !

I must admit that I'm not too bothered about the corrosion problem as corrosion is always a problem to steel built cars but I am worried about the compatibility thing as I already have problems with my hedge trimmer carb gumming up and I really don't want this to occur with all my cars and tools as it's a real pain. But what to do about it ?? Stay in bed seems like a good idea. But that's just today's thought.

Ah, the report is here, best go to bed and read it.

Regards

Peter

davidf
24th April 2012, 12:00
Another thought

Back in the 60s, my Dad, who was a Chartered Engineer, always used to make sure he got a tankful of Cleveland Discol about once every 2 months or so. This was a brand of petrol that included ethanol.

His logic was that water and petrol do not mix, and therefore there is normally a risk of building up water (from condensation in the car's tank, or the petrol stations), and this could collect in the bottom of the tank, or even in the float chambers, where it could cause corrosion, or even blockages in small carburettor jets (due to the different viscosity and surface tension of water compared with petrol). Ethanol is soluble in both petrol and water, so would dissolve any residual water into the petrol, so that it would be carried away through the normal consumption.

So, it was considered a good thing.

Any thoughts as to why this does not apply to today's debates?

dasadrew
24th April 2012, 12:41
That's an interesting point. A very small part of water will actually mix with petrol and the miscibility of water and Ethanol isn't quite so perfect as you imply, but is better than petrol and water by a factor of about 10. (Ethanol can dissolve about 10 times as much water as petrol can), but you are right that this could be a positive factor for car petrol tanks.

I'm afraid any further info on this which I have access to comes from the aviation world where the exact same effect is detrimental! As you don't want any water in the combustion process, it is actually an advantage that the water separates and goes to the bottom of the fuel tank, where it is collected in special drain points which you empty before flight.

davidf
24th April 2012, 13:04
Yes, and if you are flying a B777 from Beijing to Heathrow, you particularly don't want water in the fuel collecting near the filters!!!!!

But our Stags don't often encounter -74 ambient, and if they did, a few other things would have already stopped working!

DJT
24th April 2012, 13:26
I'm afraid any further info on this which I have access to comes from the aviation world where the exact same effect is detrimental! As you don't want any water in the combustion process, it is actually an advantage that the water separates and goes to the bottom of the fuel tank, where it is collected in special drain points which you empty before flight.

We actually have to sample our Jet-A1 fuel offshore daily, as well as immediately before and after fuelling, using water detection capsules that turn from white to bright blue at the merest hint of water. Even a slight tinge of blue is a 'fail' and the fuel can't be used. Often wondered what would happen if I used one of these capsules at my local petrol station :confused:

Dave

aerosilver
29th April 2012, 12:08
A mate of mine has recently bought a half restored Spitfire (Triumph not Supermarine) and tells me he has replaced all the rubber fuel lines with "ethanol resistant" ones. Surely it can't be that simple?

Cheers,

Bob.

V Mad
29th April 2012, 13:12
A mate of mine has recently bought a half restored Spitfire (Triumph not Supermarine) and tells me he has replaced all the rubber fuel lines with "ethanol resistant" ones. Surely it can't be that simple?

Cheers,

Bob.

Ask him which material he used, most of them are not resistant. There are some resistant elastomers (rubbers) out there, such as Viton, but fuel lines are not the only concerns. The sealants used in the fuel tank seams may leak, and some metals such as brass and copper can be attacked and therefore not reccommended as compatible. Maybe he should check that he doesnt have copper fuel pipes under the car.

Check out the FBHVC website for more info.