BioDiesel. A viable Alternative???


With the recent painful hikes in fuel prices, it is getting harder to get out and about and enjoy our sport/passtime. There does not seem to be an end in sight to these rises, so the situation is only going to get harder. So, now I am looking into a viable alternative for my vehicle. I have looked into changing over to a petrol engine, and then gas, but I will lose the flexability and the control of the diesel, plus the expense of doing this conversion is out of my reach....

My situation, I own a HJ60, Diesel, with 9 seats. I have a large family, 8 kids, so it is either have this truck, or go to a van:eek:, which limits where I can go. My family and I enjoy going camping, and all but the wife thoroughly enjoy going 4bying. This is a passtime the whole family enjoys, and we get a buzz out of being outdoors. It is hard to find anything the WHOLE family enjoys, but this is a definite "Hell Yeah" from all when we go out.:D

So, now I am researching Bio Diesel. This seems to be a viable and do-able alternative, so I can keep doing what I enjoy. This seems to be a reasonably easy process once setup. You use oils from fish and chip shops to make the Bio Diesel, convert it, and then use it in your vehicle. As most of these shops have to pay to get rid of their old oils, the shops I have spoken to will gladly let me take it for free, it saves them money, and once converted, wil also save me money, and get me back out there. Here is an excert from the The Biodiesel Association of Australia, BAA Home which outlines this is not a new technology, this information has been around for a LONG time. Here it is;

" Biodiesel is the name for a variety of ester-based oxygenated fuels made from vegetable oils or animal fats. The concept of using vegetable oil as a fuel dates back to 1895 when Dr Rudolf Diesel developed the first diesel engine to run on vegetable oil. Diesel demonstrated his engine at the World Exhibition in Paris in 1900 using peanut oil as fuel.

The production of biodiesel, or alkyl esters, is well known. There are three basic routes to ester production from oils and fats:

Base catalyzed transesterification of the oil with alcohol.

Direct acid catalyzed esterification of the oil with methanol.

Conversion of the oil to fatty acids, and then to Alkyl esters with acid catalysis.

The majority of the alkyl esters produced today are done with the base catalyzed reaction because it is the most economic for several reasons:

Low temperature (150 F) and pressure (20 psi) processing.

High conversion (98%) with minimal side reactions and reaction time.

Direct conversion to methyl ester with no intermediate steps.

Exotic materials of construction are not necessary.

Recent increases in crude oil prices and resultant petrodiesel prices have escalated interest in biodiesel and accelerated production plans in Australia."

Now, my question is, if this was proven soooo long ago, why in the hell arent we doing it now. This is ludacrous to expect families to keep paying these prices for fuel, when there is another means to make the reasonable facsimile, that is cheaper to make, and does the same job, thus ease the burden on families. I understand the Petro Chemical companies will lose millions, but if we keep going the way we are, they will lose anyway as people will find other means on transport, or more efficient means.

Which is why I am looking into it, so I can keep doing what I, and my family, enjoy. I would love to know everyones thoughts, and if anyone has done it, would like to know how much it made a difference.


4x4 Earth Contributer
Bio response

I have a friend who has been making his own bio for some time. It started getting to much having to wash it. He has now resorted to straight vege oil (filtered). His Mitsubishi has been running well until recently. The oil has caused a build up on the lines. this isn't a big deal as you can use other products to cut it back. There was a survey around not too long ago asking about whether or not we would buy bio if it were cheaper. Turns out they are looking at supplying at a slightly reduced cost to shat we are paying now. The stats show that consumption is higher on Bio, my opinions they need to drop the price at least 50cents per litre for it to even be considered. The other option they say is to add gas, Gas seemes to be a good aditive to diesel. I'm however seriously considering following suit with my mate and collecting oil from the local fish & chip shops and filtering it to burn. I'll let you know how successful it is for me. Currently cost Dave approximately 12 cents per litre. good compared to the current 179.9 per litre/


Well-Known Member
Great , have been wanting to hear from someone who actually runs on the vegie oil basis . Would like to know more of the pitfalls if any , also on filtration do you use the high pressure dunny roll set up or are there more efficient systems.

Thankfull for any information.