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Bio-Diesel and Alternative Fuels Discussion of biodiesel (homegrown or store bought) and other alternative fuels for diesel-powered vehicles.

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Old 04-14-2006, 12:34 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

Please share your cost per gallon wth us...
Lye/KOH + methanol Cost =?
Electric est = ?
Water Est = ?
Transportation cost = ?
WVO Cost = ?
Other cost = ?
Thanks,

Here is mine

Lye/KOH + methanol Cost = .46
Electric est = .06
Water Est = .02
Transportation cost = 0
WVO Cost = 0
Other cost = 0
That comes to .57 per gallon

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Old 04-14-2006, 12:49 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

Lye/KOH + methanol Cost = .285(this is with using 15% methanol and the lye that i use is at no cost to me, hence why my production cost is so low. Also the electricity and such are covered by the parents and the water is well water, so very little money for that)
Electric est = .06
Water Est = .02
Transportation cost = 0
WVO Cost = 0
Other cost = 0
That comes to .365 ~ .37 per gallon

I figured though if i did go with how everyone else does and stuff like what I get isn't paid for, .60 is a very fair price. I've also been trying to look into now ways in order to seperate when i get a chance, but havent had a lot of time lately. Also, I have spoke with many of the professors here in the ag and bio engineering departments on what they are doing. But as for myself, I'm an aeronautical engineering major so i just do this stuff on the side when i get time. The biggest thing that I have found with my oil is the fact that 22% is not neccessary for me. I've had great results with where I am at on the meth. One more thing i will be attempting on my batch tonite is to recylce the old glycerin to see if i can decrease my numbers even further. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/shrug.gif[/img]
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Old 04-14-2006, 05:41 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

Ok so zero cost on the Lye makes the cost per gallon understandable.
Consider figuring in the water and electric as someone has to pay for it!
I had been using 22% methanol, guess if I had time I would run some test batches and see just "How Low I Can Go". I know methanol is going to be going up so that might motivate me to do the testing.
Anyone else got some numbers to post?
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Old 04-14-2006, 07:20 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

That is awesome, I just gotta ask though guys, how much does it cost to get set up to brew your own? I've heard 10k from some, but I'm sure that is buying a complete system, I know you can make one with water heaters and some things.
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Old 04-14-2006, 10:29 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

New water heater 190 bucks (50 gallon size makes about a 35 gallon batch).
Pump 50 bucks fittings well you get the picture.
Good scrounger, under 200 bucks!
Some other things needed like scale and some testing equipment but still all thats way under 100 bucks.
I'll bet if you use both tanks of fuel per week, you cold pay for what ever you build in 2 weeks time.
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Old 04-14-2006, 11:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

[ QUOTE ]
Please share your cost per gallon wth us...
Ok. I buy frm a chemical company with a business license. I sure don't know how you guys are getting such a low price...but here is mine. I pay 194.00 for 55 gallons of methanol ($2.56 a gal) AND 50 pounds of KOH at $ 1.07 a pound. Maybe my math sucks or the spreadsheet I'm using is wrong but this is how it seems to work out per gallon of biod. My base for KOH is 7.7 (90 percent pure) Grams and my oil tritrates at 1.25. I use 20 % Methanol. According to my spreadsheet (well somebody's on the web?)for a 30 gallon batch

KOH == $ 2.67
methanol Cost = $ 15.36
Electric est = $2.00
Water Est = ? $1.00
Transportation cost = $ 2.00

WVO Cost = ?0
total for aprox 29 gallons of output== 79.4 cents a gallon ($23,93 / 29 gallons).
I probably am high on my transportation, but I'm guessing..to include picking up the methanol/KOH from the chem factory & driving to pickup oil. Also guessing (high?) on elect I hope. I also figure a gallon wasted due to washing/draining. Hope this helps ya'll.
David
Thanks,

Here is mine

Lye/KOH + methanol Cost = .46
Electric est = .06
Water Est = .02
Transportation cost = 0
WVO Cost = 0
Other cost = 0
That comes to .57 per gallon

Rick H...

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Old 04-15-2006, 12:51 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

My batches are 55 gallons of oil, using 12 gallons of methanol. From this I usually get 45-50 gallons of finished biodiesel.

After the reaction has settled I transfer 50 gallons to the wash tank/dry tank after taking off the 17 gallons or so of the "glycerin".

Each wash uses 50/50 water/biodiesel and lasts from 2-12 hours, the first one is a mist. This usually takes about 300gallons per batch over 5-7 washes to achieve the neutral and clear water. I would like to know how you only use 20gallons. By the way, we usually are washing 2 batches at a time so we can stagger them and recycle the water from the cleaner batch in the wash cycle.

That being said, here is how I calculated the breakdown for the price:

$31.20, for 12 gallons of Methanol @ $2.60/gal
$5.63, for KOH (averages 3100g/55gal, about 8 batches per 55 pound bag)
$4 per batch for filters*
$3 per batch for propane (we use a burner to heat the oil instead of water heater elements)
$4 per batch for electricity (during the wash and dry cycles the biodiesel is kept at 90F for optimum efficiency)
$2.63 per batch for biocide (3oz, for shelf life of 6 months)
$2.86 per batch for 300 gallons of wash water**
$1.00 per batch for misc (paper towels, titration supplies, ...etc.)
---------------------------
$54.32 for 45-50 gallons of biodiesel, $1.09 - $1.21

* filters: 200 micron -> 30 micron -> 15 micron (water block) -> 10 micron -> 6 micron
** The city charges $9.54/1000gal, for water and sewer, sewer is not optional, they assume sewer if you use the water.

If someone can help me improve the process to save money I would welcome your input.

One of the things I have found to GREATLY save time in the process is purchasing a manly air pump, not an aquarium pump, but a hydroponics pump, mine is 80 watt @4.2 PSI. The more bubbles, without making an emulsion is the best, also, from my experience, the more water the better too. These decrease the time involved, not necessarily the cost of the process.

Updates: I have found a source for methanol locally for $1.95/gal so that should lower my costs some, and I'm also looking into methanol recovery to further lower my cost.
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Old 04-15-2006, 01:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

Im gonna check into this, between me and all my diesel driving frieds and family I could definately pay for the system in no time.

As for a cheap methanol source...If you know any tire shop guys that fluid tractor tire, may talk to them about buying some extra and you paying of course, they use quite a bit and may get a qauntity discount.
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Old 04-15-2006, 01:32 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

$.85 per gallon.
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Old 04-15-2006, 09:11 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

JDB,
Just a note...
You can not sell it as you have to be a registered fuel or fuel blender producer. Technicallity. You can sell barrels.
You can make 400 gallons per quarter for personal use.
Thems the rules!
But do not let that stop you!
Just do it, you will get hook!
Then making black smoke dont hurt your wallet!
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Old 04-15-2006, 07:52 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

You may be able to sell it as bio heating fuel.
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Old 04-16-2006, 07:35 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

rick, how good is your wvo? the kind i get has no water at all in it and is a nice clear honey color. also with the using less methanol, i am also using a flat rate of 3.75 g/L lye along with a prewash. All of these combined and I am gettin perfect bactches that wash easily with no soap and are getting a full reaction. might want to do some testing as well seeing as how the price of everything seems to be exponentially increasing nowadays.
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Old 04-16-2006, 10:21 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

.5 titration no water. I consider it very good oil.
I do plan on doing some adjusting on the methanol amounts, but so far, 22% has consitantly produced excellent fuel.
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Old 04-16-2006, 11:05 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

You call that just good oil?!?!?![img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/eek.gif[/img]

That's fantastic, your supplier must just put the fresh oil in the fryer and then take it right out[img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/biggrin.gif[/img]
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Old 04-17-2006, 08:50 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: Your Biodiesel production cost per gallon?

I have oil under .5 all the time. .3 and .2 most of the time.
I guess thats why my wife's funnel cakes and elephant ears are so good! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
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