?Old Trucks Are Like Old Friends

Sometimes people give me strange looks when I get out of my old truck in parking lots. It’s as if they’re saying “”Boy, can’t she afford something better than that?””

And I’ll admit, my truck does look rough. It definitely needs a new paint job, and the upholstery is worn. But the only way my truck will get traded in on a new one is if the day comes when it’s just impossible to make repairs. I don’t have to drive very far and don’t go anywhere very often because as a freelancer, I work from home. So I think and hope that we have a few more years together before that happens.

So what if I have to use a key to unlock the door, and the seats aren’t heated? The heater and air conditioner work perfectly, so I’m always comfortable.

My truck is an old friend. It’s a 1991 Chevy � Ton, four-wheel drive with a 454 engine, and it has gotten me places other people are afraid to go. Like through deep mud and snow berms and up steep dirt roads. We’ve been together so long that I don’t have to think about how much to accelerate to make it up an icy hill or how much power I’ll need to slog through a muddy stretch of road. We work together – just like old friends should.

Not only that, it fits me perfectly. From the size and shape of the seat, to the angle of the steering wheel, to the distance to the foot pedals – my truck and I fit each other. And it handles and rides like a dream – so smooth. If that wasn’t enough, any time I want to really get moving all I have to do is touch the gas pedal and we’ll be zooming.

The only problem comes when I try to drive some ordinary car, or my husband’s diesel truck. I keep thinking there’s something wrong because nothing happens when I touch the gas. Then I remember, “”Oh yes, on this vehicle I have to push on the gas pedal.””

Over the years my truck has had to have a few repairs – and right now there’s a pesky oil leak. But hey, after traveling over 223,000 miles, it’s entitled to an ache or a pain here and there.

I’m in favor of keeping old friends – whether they’re humans, old horses, or trucks that have served me well. I see no point in trading them in for new ones, but instead choose to nurture and care for the ones I have.

Now when it comes to old computers – I’m not so loyal.

?Duramax Diesel Performance & Economy

The Duramax Diesel trucks are known to be powerful. They are built with heavy duty engines with a lot of power and the famous Allison transmission that all the ford and dodge drivers wish they had. There are still those out there that don’t know that there are ways to boost their power and more importantly, boost their fuel economy significantly. Now is more important than ever that duramax owners learn about these things with the rising fuel prices and demanding jobs for their trucks and in many cases their businesses and livelihood.

The first thing that anyone should do to their duramax to increase fuel economy and power is a tuner or module. With the addition of a tuner or module to the duramax, fuel economy can be increased anywhere from one to five miles per gallon. Most people gain right around three or four miles per gallon. Results do vary though, depending on driving habits and the truck configuration. Another nice feature of a tuner is that the speedometer can be recalibrated for different size tires and the speed limiter can be removed for the weekend track people. The tuners and modules increase engine efficiency by altering and optimizing the fueling parameters. Power and fuel economy increases go together except on the race modules and tuner programs that are made for racing. In those cases the truck is being tuned just for power. Most tuners and modules are available with multiple programs to suit the needs of everyone.

Another popular modification for power and fuel economy increases is the cold air intake. Getting air into the engine is extremely important. If you don’t have enough air getting into the engine, the result is black smoke, which equals fuel and money out the tail pipe. Tuners or modules and air intakes work well together by optimizing the fuel and the air to get the most power and biggest fuel economy increases. The last thing that people do is an upgraded exhaust system. This does a couple of things. It helps keep exhaust gas temperatures down. This is important especially for anyone that has to tow something. You don’t want to melt your engine parts. There are a lot of options for exhaust upgrades. One of the most popular as of late is diesel smoke stacks. They put the exhaust up and away from where it will get all over the trailer. It gives the truck a big rig type look. They also give a bit of a power and fuel economy increase be relieving back pressure. The Diesel smoke stacks can be found in single and dual configurations. The most important thing of any of this is saving dollars with a tough economy.

?Are Diesel Engines More Efficient?

When many people think of diesel engines, they think of huge semi-trucks and huge gas prices. However, diesel engines can be very efficient. An increasing number of high-end vehicles are creating their cars to run on diesel fuel. Mercedes and Jetta are two companies that have done so.
Vehicles with diesel engines tend to have increased fuel efficiency. In fact, many of the are on par to smaller cars when it comes to gas mileage. Diesel engines are able to burn fuel at increased temperatures, higher then traditional gas engines. This helps the engine become more fuel efficient. The more efficient the fuel is, the greater it lasts. Drivers will be able to drive longer or less fuel. As gas prices, including diesel fuel, continue to rise, the more miles a car can run, the money that has to be spent on fuel.
Diesel is also more dense then regular gas. It takes a lower amount of fuel to achieve the same power as traditional gasoline. This greatly increases the efficiency of diesel fuel which makes it an attractive alternate to regular gasoline.
Even with all of these benefits, diesel engines have not become especially popular in the United States. For one thing, prices for diesel fuel are higher then regular gasoline. Also, not every fueling station has a diesel pump, although more and more then are popping up. Diesel engine vehicles may also get a bad rap from problems associated with earlier models, namely that they were loud and gave off a lot of soot. Technology has sensed remedied a great deal of these problems. Diesel engines which are manufactured today are quite, burns clean and not much soot is anywhere to be found. Also today, only clean diesel fuel is used in the United States.
While diesel fuel is more expensive then regular fuel, there are some real advantages. Diesel fuel burns clean and is more efficient then regular gasoline. However, the high prices of diesel fuel make purchasing a diesel engine car less attractive. There are diesel engine alternatives that can make fuel cheaper. Biodiesel is one of those options.
Because diesel fuel is more dense then regular gasoline, it takes less of it to achieve the same power. This accounts for its’ better fuel efficiency. However a major disadvantage to using diesel fuel lately is that it is more expensive.
It will cost more to purchase diesel fuel. For many people, with gas prices already being so high, the idea of purchasing a car that runs on diesel is unappealing. This was not always the case. Diesel, historically was cheaper then gasoline. It has only been the last few years where diesel costs have eclipsed those of gas.
Individuals that already have diesel engines may be looking for alternatives to decrease their costs. Biodiesel is one of the options that is receiving increased consideration. Biodiesel uses cooking oils to fuel diesel engines. These oils can be gathered free from restaurants or include left over oil that a person has used themselves. Because the materials to create biodiesel can be had cheaply, it is becoming an attractive option for more and more individuals.

?Dodge Sprinter Offers Great MPG

Times are tough and fuel prices are high, but some of us can’t transport all we need to transport in a fuel-efficient economy car. Luckily, we don’t have to, because Dodge Sprinter offers an average city MPG in the upper-20s, which is great for a cargo/passenger van of its size. Though, admittedly, it is no Prius in fuel efficiency, it offers the passenger capacity to handle large church or school groups in comfort, or enough cargo capacity to make any plumber, painter, contractor or flower delivery person happy as can be-all of which a Prius cannot offer.

According to Car and Driver, the Sprinter 2500 diesel passenger van offers 26 city MPG and 30 highway MPG, combined with the ability to carry up to 12 passengers comfortably, Sprinter blows its competition out of the fuel-efficiency waters. The GMC Savanna offers 13 City MPG and 16 Hwy MPG according to recent EPA figures, and the popular Chevrolet Express offers the same.

Sprinter’s main cargo van competitors are also the GMC Savanna, and Chevy Express, along with the popular Ford E series, all averaging 12 MPG compared to Sprinter’s upper-20s. Much of the fuel efficiency comes from its diesel powered engine. In the past, diesel engines emitted an unpleasant odor and black smoke that made them undesirable to many, but today’s diesel engines burn much cleaner and no longer produce these unpleasant effects. Of course, Sprinter also offers a gasoline engine, though the fuel efficiency will not be a good, it will have a little more get-up-and-go than the diesel model.

As hybrid engines gain popularity in smaller cars, such as the Toyota Prius, they are still very much in the development stage in cargo and passenger vans. Chevrolet has announced they will offer a 2009 hybrid Silverado, the only full-sized hybrid truck set for release as of yet, but no hybrid cargo or passenger vans are yet on the horizon. So, as of yet, Dodge Sprinter still stands as the most fuel efficient vehicle of its class.

Sprinter offers numerous options, which makes creating the van to best fit your needs a snap. It offers up to 547 cubic feet of cargo space, or seating up to 12 passengers in the passenger variety. It also offers a taller body than other vans, allowing one to stand up inside. And though they tend to look utilitarian and top-heavy, they handle like a much smaller vehicle, and provide ample safety features such as traction control, anti-lock breaks, and braking distribution regulators.

A great, fuel efficient option for large families, church organizations, and schools, as well as plumbers, contractors, caterers and other businesses, Dodge Sprinter offers unbeatable cargo and passenger space and will save you money at the gas tank. So why not have it all, fuel-efficiency and a roomy interior to accommodate all your transportation needs. Until bio-fuels become more attainable and hybrids are developed in larger vehicle classes, Sprinter offers the most fuel efficient van of its class.

?New Features of the 2011 Chevrolet Silverado Heavy Duty Trucks

The 2011 Chevrolet Silverado heavy duty trucks have some exciting new features that make them the most exciting models to hit floors for awhile. From new frames to new technology, you will be surprised at how much you want this new Chevy heavy duty truck.

The 2011 heavy duty truck models all have new frames to improve ride and durability. Eleven all new full boxed frame assemblies with increased cross sections and more high strength steel give the trucks a higher towing capacity. The front sections are also hydro formed.

They also have a completely redesigned independent front suspension system that offers a greater front axle weight rating. This enables a snow plow to be used on all four wheel drive cab configurations. This improved suspension uses a pair of urethane jounce bumpers on each side instead of one for improved load management.

The heavy trucks also sport a new asymmetrical leaf spring rear suspension. It minimizes axle hop and enhances traction control efficiency. The 2500 models feature a two stage design, while the 3500 models have a three stage design.

There is a new powertrain combination of the Duramax 6.6L diesel and Allison 1000 six speed automatic transmission. This combo helps enable new features such as the exhaust brake system. This combination is expected to deliver the best fuel economy for this truck segment.

A powertrain also returns to the heavy duty trucks. The Vortec 6.0L gas V8 with variable valve timing with the strengthened version of the Hydra-Matic 6L90 six speed automatic transmission delivers excellent performance and efficiency. It also gives a greater emphasis on low rpm power.

Another new feature, only on the Duramax models, is an exhaust brake system. This is a driver selectable feature that uses the turbine control of the turbocharger and the compression of the engine to generate backpressure which slows the truck without applying the brakes. The brake system allows for effortless driving and teaming and prolongs the brake life and prevents overheating.

The brake feel and performance is also improved as the standard four wheel disc system was revamped to deliver smoother, immediate and confident feeling performance. The front and rear rotors are larger in diameter and width to support their increased capacity, weight ratings and trailering ratings.

The longer wheelbases and wider front/rear tracks also enhance the ride and handling characteristics of the 2500 and 3500. This gives them a greater feeling of smoothness and control.

There are many new safety features included now such as StabiliTrak electronic stability control system on the single rear wheel models, new high strength steel tubular frame cross member, seat pelvic/thorax and head curtain side air bags, available rear backup camera, trailer sway control system on single rear wheel models, hill start assist and segment exclusive OnStar 9.0.

?Dodge RAM 2500 Review

In 1994, the Dodge Ram changed the truck industry by showing customers that full-sized pickup trucks could resemble more than cinderblock shape. The Ram 2500 boasts rugged, muscular appearance that was inspired by big rig trucks, especially the prominent grill and shouldered fender design. When the Ram introduced revamped look in 1999, it caused sales to double in the US.

The Ram 2500 is the 3rd generation of this truck and boasts an even stronger engine and body lineup, along with a variety of cab styles. Aside from the standard cab, buyers can choose the four door cab or mega cab for extra space. The V8 5.7 liter engine is capable of 600 pound-feet of raw torque, making it the perfect truck for hauling heavy loads or driving through difficult terrain. The imposing style and impressive power of this vehicle has gained it a loyal set of fans amongst serious truckers.

Styling Options

Ram diesel trucks for sale come with four wheel or two wheel options. Buyers can also pick a variety of trim configurations and body styles. The mega cab will have a short storage bed, while the standard cab has a longer bed. The crew cab can be equipped with either one.

There are three trim levels: luxurious Laramie, volume-selling SLT, and basic ST. The higher trim levels provide optional and standard niceties such as a hard-drive navigational system, leather upholstery, Bluetooth, and automatic climate control. If you are buying used diesel trucks for sale, you can equip your ram with off-road packages for outdoor driving.

Engine

All Ram 2500 trucks are equipped with the standard 5.7 liter V8 engine. This hefty motor features a five speed automatic transmission, making it fairly easy to drive if you are not used to trucks. If you want additional towing capability, purchase the 6.7 turbo liter upgrade that produces 350 horsepower. Buyers can choose between a six speed automatic or manual transmission.

Conclusion

In summary, the Dodge Ram 2500 is an extremely capable and versatile heavy-duty truck. Its comfortable ride, wide variety of body style, and powerful engine make it a favorite amongst diehard truckers. The interior is better than most trucks, with materials and designs that you would expect to find on a luxury car or SUVs. An abundance of attractive accents and soft-touch materials almost make it too fancy for a utilitarian truck. However, it is more than able to survive in the roughest of environmental conditions.

?Anybody Can Own Property in Brazil

Foreigners (non-Brazilians) are permitted to own property outright in Brazil. Also, foreigners have the same property rights as Brazilians and will obtain a free & clear title to the property. It is no different than owning real estate in Europe or the U.S. Brazil is quickly becoming the world-leader in attracting foreign investment and immigration. There are literally millions of foreign nationals in Brazil who own property and businesses. There is no risk since property ownership is guaranteed by the Constitution for Brazilians and foreigners. Land ownership is in perpetuity and always includes full mineral and water rights, since these cannot be separated from the land in Brazil. Title insurance is available from a USA based title company.

OK, so you can own property in Brazil. Why would you want to?

Brazil is home to the largest rain forest on earth, the largest river on earth, and to “”Carnival”” which is like a super version of Mardi Gras.

Brazil has the sixth largest population in the world. Because of its size, there are only 15 people per sq. km, concentrated mainly along the coast and in the major cities, where two-thirds of the people now live: over 19 million in greater Sao Paulo and 10 million in greater Rio. Sao Paulo is arguably the most populous city on earth, having more than twice the population of New York City.

Few countries offer as great a variety of environments. Brazil has more land mass than any other country in South America. In terms of area, the nation is fifth in the world, exceeded only by Russia, Canada, the USA and China, occupying almost half of South America. Brazil has contrasting ecosystems such as the Amazon Forest and the Atlantic Forest with their incredibly luxuriant woodlands, the Cerrado (scrublands) and the Caatinga (arid lands), the Pantanal (marshland) with its flood plains teeming with an amazingly rich chain of animal reproduction.

Still not impressed? OK, would you be impressed if you could buy 50 acres of Brazilian Highlands for $15,000? Owner financing is available with no credit check and 10% down-payment.

Area Description

Unlike nearby Western Bahia state, SE Tocantins has seen little development. W. Bahia, with similar climatic and agronomic conditions as SE Tocantins, today (along with Matto Grosso) is the most developed agricultural area of frontier states, with highly productive farms, fertile soils (after correction) and conducive economic environment for agriculture. City of Louis Eduardo Manghales, center of farming activity of W. Bahia, is only about 120 km away from this farm. Farmers from south of Brazil, and American/Europeans discovered the area, and run very profitable farms, growing soybeans, beans, corn, rice, cotton, coffee. While climatic and agronomic prerequisites in SE Tocantins are similar with W. Bahia, uncleared land in W. Bahia is very expensive, while uncleared land in SE Tocantins is cheap and overlooked by prospective investors. Today SE Tocantins remains largely undeveloped. Ninety percent of land in my estimation is uncleared/unused. The rivers here are of exceptional natural beauty, and largely overlooked by Brazilians. Its only a matter of time before farmers and tourists discover the area and pave the way for a land boom of Matto Grosso and W. Bahia.

Description of town…..20km (12 miles) away, Rio do Conseicao (Conseption River), pop. 2000. Brand new highway was built to connect this town at the end of the line. There is very little traffic. Town has all the basic necessities: two schools, medical clinic,- school and clinic are free (Brazil has free national health care available to all residents regardless of income level); supermarket, a couple of restaurants and bars, land phone line, cell phone coverage; no landline internet though, nor is there a gas station. Satellite internet service is available in even the most remote locations in Brazil, but it is expensive. Satellite internet service costs about $100 a month. A simple home can be bought for about US$10,000. In center of town, there is a river, Manuel Alves, with a rock beach; water is shallow, clean, and fast; beautiful waterfalls are just behind the bridge. On Sundays the whole town comes to this riverfront plaza.

Dianopolis, a town of 20,000, is 40km (25 miles) from this farm. This town has everything, including modem and DSL internet access.

Farm description…..Brazilian owner made available this 7500 acre farm to be sold in smaller parcels, 50, 100, 200 acre interior parcels. Scenery is of gently undulating grassland/scrubland, with view of mesas, and of a distant W. Bahia escarpment. Scenery is not unlike that of Arizona, but with 1500mm annual precipitation. Vegetation, shrubs and sparse grasses. It seems as though, to clear this land, one would only need a pass with a disc.

Access…..A 12km wide sand road leads to this farm from a paved highway. To get to the farm you will need: 4×4, or…pick-up, high suspension FWD, motorbike, or horse/burro. Access to lots within the farm, a tractor or other farm vehicle will easily override the terrain/vegetation. All lots have passage easements. Riverfront lots have 8 meter passage easement, for all to enjoy. Unfortunately, you will not be able to drive or ship any of your cars, motorcycles, trucks, or farm tractors from the USA to Brazil. Brazil is a major manufacturer of motor vehicles. The world’s largest Volkswagen production facility is located in Brazil, plus many other car, truck, and tractor companies are also located in Brazil. Brazil has strict import quotas and restrictive tariffs to discourage imported motor vehicles. If you buy property in Brazil and move here, you are allowed one household move, duty free and tariff free. It would be financially beneficial for you to take advantage of this generous allowance because normally all imported goods are subject to stiff import taxes. However, you may not include any motor vehicles in the household move. It would be best to just sell your motor vehicles where they are, and buy new ones in Brazil. The importation of your new or used motor vehicles into Brazil would be prohibitively expensive and problematic.

Soil, is acid, low PH, quartzenic; sandy soil requires much less lime application than clay soil; white color on top, then several inches of gray sand with some organic matter, undersoil has a peach color. To correct fertility of this soil, two tons of limestone added to a hectare, and 800kg of fertilizer. I have observed local ranchers growing in their gardens: bananas, cassava/manioc, lemons, oranges, papayas, coconuts, cashews, mango, -without any soil correction. A wide variety of tropical fruits, nuts, spices, and other crops can be grown in this tropical area.

This soil, as is, would be well suited for rice. Rice has a high domestic price. This soil is well suited to grow castor beans (mamona) with no soil correction. Mamona have 40% oil content and are used in Brazil for oil extraction to produce commercial grade bio-diesel fuel. These beans will grow in any soil, as is!

Reforestation. Eucalyptus trees, southern pine, teak, and bamboo, – will grow in this soil as is, and are fast growing, can be cut in as little as 5 years, an acre will yield about 500 trees, can be used locally for fence posts, and beams.

Grasses/cattle. Existing natural grasses are sparse and not liked much by cows. Seeded grass, one variety I saw in Tocantins, ‘brachiaria’, grows over 6 feet tall. Otherwise, land as is, can be grazed by sheep and goats.

By state law, 35% of this land needs to be left in native state. This rule though, seems to be widely disregarded.

Property taxes – Fortunately property taxes are very low in this area. Annual property taxes on a rural property here valued at $50,000 USD would be in the vicinity of $50 USD.

Altitude, about 750 meters at higher elevation of farm, allowing for coffee plantation.

Rivers in SE Tocantins, like I never seen before, are of exceptional natural beauty. River on this farm, Manuel Alvinho. About 10m wide, 1.5m deep; current, 5km/hour; small fish. One waterfall, several rapids. Water clarity, excellent. The river banks are of pink sand, and pink sandbars with palms, making for exceptionally attractive scenery. This farm has a waterfall, about 30 feet high, and several small rapids. You have to see the pictures, or visit, to believe. There are several springs along riverfront. Some riverfront spots are of waterlogged, but firm sand. Water from higher elevations percolates slowly down into the valley, feeding the river year-round. These perpetually wet sands would make for a unique irrigated field, making for unusual plantations. Well water, depending distance from the river, from 5m to 60m deep. Highest vs. lowest elevation on farm, I estimate about 150 feet difference.

There is a ‘pion’, farm worker, who lives nearby, and he keeps an eye on this farm.

Climate. Rains a lot for 5-6 months, October to April. Rains hard for about an hour every, every other day. Then sunny. Annual precipitation about 1500mm, which about the same amount of rainfall as Florida usually receives. Dry period, May to October, rains little or not at all. Temperature, no difference winter to summer. Daytime average highs, 29C (84F); nighttime average lows, 19C (66F). This land is located in the tropics, but is in the Brazilian Highlands so it is not so terribly hot and humid here. The year round temperature in SE Tocantins is similar to the temperature in Hawaii.

You may be asking “”What is the catch?”” This is good potential farm land. This land is natural grasslands but can easily be developed into productive farmland. Only 20% of the arable land in Brazil is being cultivated at present and less than 10% in the State of Tocantins. The soil and growing conditions are very similar to Southern Florida. Local farmers currently use nearby land for grazing, growing citrus fruit and row crops including soybeans, castor beans, corn and cotton. Local people grow many of the same vegetables in their gardens that we are familiar with in the USA. There is plenty of rainfall and a long growing season.

It is a simple matter to obtain permanent resident status in Brazil. You can keep your USA citizenship and U.S. passport and still obtain permanent resident status in Brazil. Permanent residents of Brazil are allowed to hold both USA and Brazilian passports. This bonus could come in handy some day. USA passport holders are sometimes targeted by terrorists, but Brazilians are not.

Finally, if you were to buy land in Brazil and become a permanent resident in Brazil you can ship your entire household to Brazil duty free. This would make the transition more comfortable and practical.

?Diesel Versus Gasoline: Why a Diesel Powered Car Might be Your Better Choice

The word “”Diesel”” should no longer make you picture semi-trucks, or loud, clunky broken down cars. Diesel over the past twenty years has changed by leaps and bounds and has become more popular now than ever.

If you rode around in a diesel vehicle in the 80’s, you are probably screaming “”gasoline is better”” at the top of your lungs. This is excusable due to the fact that twenty years ago diesels were extremely loud and unreliable. Luckily for us, technology has come to the rescue in the form of reliability. Diesel cars are now commonly seen running with over 250,000 miles of use. Though gasoline engines can hang in there for quite a long time themselves, getting to the quarter million point, with proper maintenance, is unlikely.

Life expectancy is definitely a plus when comparing diesel and gas cars. What about maintenance? Well, diesel engines don’t use an ignition so you have no tune-up costs or worries. They use glow plugs rather than spark plugs which generally need to be changed every two years or so plus or minus a few months depending on the vehicle. As far as oil changes, they work the same as gas engines—change the oil every 3,000 miles and you’ll be fine. Fuel and air filters should be changed regularly as needed, of course.

Now, the all important numbers. If we start with upfront costs, the diesel seems more expensive, and a comparison of the same make and model car yields a cost difference of about three thousand dollars between the diesel and gasoline versions. But is diesel really more expensive? Let’s examine the question.

Diesel fuel is almost always cheaper than unleaded gas, and how much cheaper varies of course with rising and falling gas prices. But The cost savings do not stop at the pump; they continue as you drive down the road and by this we are talking fuel economy. The diesel is the king of this domain. With some diesels getting over 70 mpg, this is by far the best bang for the buck.

So the diesel wins in fuel economy and maintenance. But are there disadvantages to diesel? Well, diesel engines aren’t perfect. They can be a little noisier than gas engines, though this small amount of noise usually fades at cruising speed. They also lack a bit in acceleration compared to gas engines.

However, despite these small shortcomings, diesels are certainly becoming more user friendly and more economical and each day more and more people are choosing to go this route. It’s even quite possible that one day the majority of our motor vehicles will be diesel powered. However, until then you have the information needed to consider whether or not the diesel will be a contender for your next vehicle purchase.

?Making Biodiesel at Home – Part 1

Hi! On behalf of Parleys Diesel Performance and Utah biodiesel supply we’re now going to show you how to make a large batch of biodiesel. We’re going to show you how we collect out oil, we’ll talk a little bit about how we filter our oil, how we transfer that oil into a biodiesel processer, how we do the process, and then how we use the fuel. We’re going to talk about various things along the way so let’s get started.

First of all we have a shop, that we go out and collect oil in 55 gallon drums. We put these drums behind restaurants that we’ve contracted with, and they put oil into these drums, and then we bring them back to this shop on the back of a truck. We have a lift-gate on the back of the truck so it makes it really easy to swap them in and out. A lot of people try to collect oil using pumps, they’ll go and they’ll actually pump the oil, and we tried that for a little while, but a lift-gate was just so much easier. They’re about 2,500 to 3,500 dollars but they are the best thing in the world. If you get one be sure you don’t let your uncles, aunts, friends, and everyone else know because soon you’ll be transporting pianos down the street. They’re just a wonderful piece of equipment to have on a truck. However, what we have when we go to collect oil is, we’ll bring a barrel back here, bring it right to about here, and then we’ll get out a filter. And this looks nice and kind of grimy. It’s a four-hundred micron baron filter. We put it over the barrel, and we filter the oil. Once our filtered oil is done we’ll haul it to a production facility that I’ll show you in a moment, and we make the biodiesel.

I want to tell you a little bit about what we use here. Remember in our smaller setting we talked about using methanol, lye, and oil. Well, up here is our methanol. This methanol is a 325 gallon tank. Most of you won’t need anything this large, but we make so much fuel we get this delivered to us. Then we go through it and we take it back to our area. You can get it pretty cheap when you get it this way. This is a 55 gallon drum. This is typically how methanol is purchased. This is one common way. The easiest way to transport it home, it can be put on the back of a pick-up. And then when you get it home you get to transport it into the back of your biodiesel processor.

These are our glycerin barrels, and as we produced our fuel if you’ll remember right we had our byproduct of glycerin. So we just take that glycerin out of the machine and we’ll come over here and we pour this glycerin right into these barrels. The glycerin’s going to contain crude glycerin, some soap, some catalyst, and some methanol. We cap these barrels up, we use our lift-gate, we throw it on the back of the truck, and we haul it over to a waste water treatment plant where they take it off our hands. They add it to their methane digester which produces methane gas they use to run their generators. We get rid of it that way. They don’t charge us for it, we don’t get paid to get it taken off our hands, but it’s a nice way to get rid of it. Once we get the glycerin out of here we then can take the fuel out of here and make biodiesel with it. I’ll show you in a moment how we make the fuel.

After we have our oil filtered, in a drum such as this, we get a sump pump. And all this is is a good old cheap sump pump from Home Depot, Lowe’s, what have you. We’ve mounted a big pipe on it, and a tube, and we use this to fill the machine full of oil. We just turn it on, it works great, we put these drum on dollies so that we can move them over to our equipment, and we’re able to make biodiesel. A moment ago we showed you some methanol. This is a methanol drum right here. This is just a pump that we’ve attached to it so that we can quickly pump methanol into our machine. We’re going to make a batch today so you can see how that works as well. Methanol, oil, and then if he pans over to my side over here, this is lots and lots of catalyst. This particular catalyst contains potassium hydroxide, and we use it to make biodiesel. Remember it takes methanol, oil, and catalyst to make fuel. Behind me is on the right is fuel. This is biodiesel that we have produced in our machines. We’ll show you how that’s done, and this fuel is ready to use in diesel pickups. Again remember it’s being made for about a dollar a gallon, and we are able to save ourselves a lot of money by using what normal people would throw away. Welcome to biodiesel, we’ll show you how to filter, we’ll make a batch, and be on our way.

Once we’ve brought our oil into our warehouse we have to filter it. In order to make biodiesel it’s a really good idea to filter it so you get all your crustys and crunchys out. This is just a 55-gallon drum strainer. It’s a 400 micron. It’s the one that we personally use. It looks kind of gross and uky but we’ve probably put about 3,500 gallons of fuel through this filter. So they’re really durable and they last long. It’s just a poly based filter. You can get them on most sites. Take a look at my site I carry them as well. We’re going to put the filter on, we’re going to take our oil and just simply poor it through it. Now, oil coming from restaurants is really gross, and nasty. As you see there are some crustys and stuff in here, and as you notice it doesn’t like to go through this really quick so we get ourselves a spatula with rounded corners, and we just scrape back and forth to let those crustys go out. So this oil is just going to filter through. Can you hear it filtering down in there? Once it’s filtered we’ll take it into our lab or into our shop and make biodiesel. So we’re going to kind of let this sit here for a while while we go do that. One thing I want to show you though, a lot of times you’re going to get really thicky crap oil and you need to get rid of the crustys. So we cut a car boy open which is what your going to typically get oil in, and we just scrape it into there. So again I’m just moving back and forth real slow. You can see some of those chunks that I’m getting out of that. It’s usually food particles and stuff from the grill, it’s French fries, just all that stuff they put in the oil over at the restaurant that you really don’t want in your fuel. Particularly in your truck, okay? I’m just going to filter that out, and our next step is showing you how we load our machine, full of oil. Then we’re going to make a batch. So we’ll see you in a second.

Our next step is we’ve filtered the oil so now it’s time to make the biodiesel. Remember from before, to make biodiesel you need a heated mixture, so I happen to have sitting next to me one heck of a heated mixture. This is a stainless steel piece of equipment with a giant mixer in it, and a big heater on the bottom. It allows me to make biodiesel very quickly, and in a fairly automated fashion. Now to make biodiesel you don’t need something like this, but we make so much that we like it. Let me tell you just how much we make. You’ve seen the fuel sitting behind me a minute ago. Last year alone we made 6,800 gallons of fuel that we used in a wide variety of diesel pickups. Anything from an 07 Duramax down to a 93 F350 to the stapid large DT466 with an international harvester engine, and we’re running biodiesel in all of those. We have a Ford, Chevy, and a Dodge that we run it in so we’ve got it all across the gammit.

We know about what it’s going to do. We’re in Utah here and we are cold outside and in the winters we are starting to blend. We make primarily our biodiesel from canola oil, canola is wonderful cold flow added diesel properties, so when it gets down to about 50 degrees we start blending. Before that we can pretty much handle it. Some of our diesels are a little bit more sensitive, others aren’t. Pretty much if it’s a diesel it will handle biodiesel, and handle it really well. That’s anything from dump trucks, to big earth movers, to farm equipment, to tiny little TIs. You name it if it’s got a diesel engine in it and it’s direct injected or indirect injected chances are it will run on biodiesel. Believe it or not, Rudolph Diesel when he made the biodiesel engine his goal was to have an engine that was ubiquitous with all sorts of oils, and biodiesel just happens to be one of those that will run in it.

?Diesel Vehicle Offerings Poised To Expand

Diesel powered vehicles have never been popular in the US, despite previous attempts to promote this technology by leading manufacturers. Indeed, many motorists recall GM’s failed bid to market diesel engines during the late 1970s to mid 1980s as a big reason to stay away from diesels. As you may recall, GM had to recall and replace the engines as they were plagued with crankshaft bearing problems. Many motorists cited other problems too including, blown head gaskets, warped heads, and bad fuel injectors. A well publicized class action suit against GM shut down the company’s diesel program and resulted in GM replacing thousands of diesel engines with gasoline engines. Despite the earlier problems, many automakers are now poised to offer diesel engines as engineering changes have made diesels much more reliable and environmentally friendly. Let’s take a look at the diesel engines powering current and future vehicles traversing America’s highways.

Mercedes Diesels – With five diesel models offered, Mercedes is leading the way. Its 3.2L 24-valve inline-6 diesel engine powers the E320, resulting in fuel savings of up to 30% and lower greenhouse gas emissions.

Dodge Trucks – Cummins has been producing turbo diesels for Dodge Ram trucks for years. The current 610 model offers best in class horsepower, excellent torque, and terrific towing capacity.

Jeep Liberty – Using Mercedes technology, the Jeep Liberty common-rail diesel powering some models helps to boost torque by 45% and bump up fuel mileage by about one third. The Liberty diesel has been a strong seller for the Jeep brand.

Volkswagen – Mentioning “”diesel”” and omitting “”Volkswagen”” would be a travesty. Indeed, the German automaker is one of the largest producers of diesel engines in the world. For the U.S. market, a 1.9L four cylinder powers the cars while a humongous ten cylinder diesel can be found in the Touareg, the automaker’s luxury SUV.

Honda – New to the game, Honda is promising that diesel versions of several of its cars will be made available by 2009. Along with its hybrid emphasis, Honda is pushing diesels to bolster its already well earned “”green”” image.

BMW, Range Rover, Ford, GM, and Chrysler all offer diesels although with the first two they are only sold in Europe. Ford taps Navistar for its big diesels while GM uses Duramax, a joint venture between it and Isuzu.

Smaller diesels have yet to grab hold, but that may all change. Talk of smaller, lighter diesels built for American cars have been circulating for years with joint ventures involving Isuzu, Honda, VW, and Mercedes mentioned as possibilities.

Demand for diesels is increasing as fuel prices continue to surge. Auto registration records are indicating that diesel purchases have doubled in the past five years alone. With cleaner technology in place and all of the kinks worked out, consumers can be expected to demand diesels in greater numbers. This is good news for those who are concerned about America’s over dependence on foreign oil.

?Annual Blow-By Test On Your Heavy Diesel Truck For Peace Of Mind

One of the most helpful inventions ever created by the human creativity is the heavy diesel truck. And keeping your heavy diesel truck’s good condition requires you to take care of your engine from negative events such as Blow-By. It is without a doubt that to clear out your mind from engine anxieties, you need to have an annual Blow-By test on your heavy diesel truck. Getting your truck tested annually will maintain the truck’s optimum performance and your ultimate production.

So, what do you mean by Blow-By anyway? The answer is simple. When there is wear in a diesel engine, then Blow-By is the result. Normally, Blow-By negatively affects the vehicle’s performance and any other machines’ performance that make use engine power. When the engine is new then the rings and cylinders need to exactly match each other otherwise, there will be unwanted functionality.

By making use of the oil from below the crankcase, the rings create a seal which prevents the oil from going out of the combustion chamber. To fully push the piston downward, the combustion energy of the engine is totally used. You need to know further about engines in order to have an effective Blow-By test. And you may even need to know the engine parts and other systems which are involved in its functions.

To start with, you need to take a closer look at rings and cylinders. The ring involved is actually a spring that effectively presses against the cylinder wall. When you view it from the top, you will notice that the cylinder is round. Whenever there is the piston that moves up and down, there is a functioning ring that rotates around the piston in its groove, and this reduces the uneven wear. The round shape of the cylinder is purposely design that way to give the ring its rotational capability. The ring plays a vital role in every heavy truck’s engines because this seals the oil below and the energy above.

Stuck rings can also cause Blow-By. As what is tackled, the ring is fabricated to rotate around the piston in its groove but when there is excess carbon deposits which are left in the combustion process, rings could not rotate and are stuck. One can also effectively determine the presence of Blow-By with old engines since there could be oil dripping from the engine’s breather tube. Another reason for Blow-By to take its occurrence is excess oil usage or burning oil – oil leak that past the ring and burns in the combustion chamber.

These are just few of the causes and reasons of Blow-By because there are some more. Mentioning all the possible causes may take us more than a day. For now, what you need to do is to know at least the most common causes and learn to prevent them. You have to remember that prevention is still the best remedy even on engine matters. Fortunately, there are lots of ways for Blow-By test for your truck’s engine.

?The selection of a pickup truck where gigantic range availability in the market is there like brands from Chevy to Dodger and to Ford and so on makes it pretty much complex to go for right choice that suits you from all aspects and fulfill the requirements at your best

The issue that comes into existence when a buyer goes for purchasing a truck either Gas or Diesel is that, what is the type of engine? And this ambiguity can be remove when we considers some of the factors like power, gas mileage ,completion available, how many miles you expect the engine to run for and other important factor is noise produced.

There is no hard and fast rule that this any specific thing is good for any specific engine but although a pile of issues must be taken into consideration and will be greatly impacted on the last best decision that you will made .

Things to focus on are: the performance of Gas vs Diesel truck. If your purpose is that a truck must be suitable for long journeys instead of long distance then you should go for a gasoline truck and it would be more capable to match your requirements while diesel truck tends to be economical to cover long distances. Moreover diesel truck is also good if you want to attach additional equipment and to carry heavy stuff.

The resale value of any vehicle reduces as many times, as much mileage you cover but the diesel truck retains its economic value because of long term and longer life span of a diesel engine than that of a gasoline truck. Diesel engines are also very strong and because of its ever growing market you can easily get and sell a used diesel truck when you decide it.

Apart from beneficial factor ofdiesel vehicle, it’s also very noisy as compared to gasoline engine but it may not be great deal for businesses. But for many years diesel engine came up with a lot of advance technologies even if uses a really exhaust system while gasoline engines can easily start in cold season.

Gasoline is comparatively cheap from diesel in US. Forlong distance with efficiency, diesel engine makes it cheaper .the prices for oil for both gas and diesel engines fluctuate.

The vehicle causes damaging effect to the environment is more prone to charge high taxes. Old diesel engines tend to release stream of thick smog but now they are replaced with the new style produce less smog. Gasoline releases carbon dioxide, harmful for environment.

?Last Days of the 2010 Ford F-250 Super Duty 6

A quick glance at the 2010 Ford F-250 Super Duty engine options reveals three potent power plants. The factory offers a 5.4L V8, a 6.8L V10, and a 6.4L turbo-diesel V8. For performance enthusiasts, the 6.8L V10 continues to provide exhilarating performance. Regardless of the success of this lineup, the selection within the truck series is about to change.

The 3-valve SOHC V10 was originally introduced in 2005. Initially, power output was rated at 310 hp and 425 lbs.-ft. torque. Over the last five years, continuous factory improvements increased maximum output to 362 hp and 457 lbs.-ft. torque. The original aluminum head design used three valves per cylinder that were actuated by a single overhead camshaft. Because of the success of the unique head design, current models continue using the same configuration.

According to factory representatives, production of the V10 power plant will be phased out later this year. The 6.2L Boss V8 will replace the legendary V10. The 6.2L Boss should produce approximately 500 hp. Perhaps the substitution is intended to regain dominance over the top-performing power plant available in the GMC 2500HD now rated at 360 hp.

The new 6.2L Boss will also be available in F-150 and F-350 series trucks. Because of the large horsepower increase, industry watchers anticipate record performance gains in all weight classes in 2011. Other 2010 Ford F-250 Super Duty engine options will remain unchanged next year. For heavy industrial use and towing, the 3-valve turbo-diesel delivers a stump-pulling 650 lbs.-ft. of torque.

Truck fans across the country regret seeing the V10 vanish. Nevertheless, full factory support is assured through all applicable warranty periods. In addition, the availability of aftermarket parts guarantees continued support for years to come. As always, as one champion disappears into history, a new champion appears to regain dominance.

?Diesel Trucks – What Makes a Good Diesel Truck?

In the automobiles market today, drivers are lavishly spoilt with large variety
of diesel trucks to pick from than what they had previously. All this fierce
competition between manufacturers has led to an important question for the
prospective owners. Which diesel truck should I spend my money on?

To get to the root of this puzzle, one must first asked the foremost question
“what makes a good diesel truck?” Factors like performance, comfortability,
practicality, and economical all comes into play and only the perfect balance
between all these factors will you find the most suitable truck for your
needs.

As we all know, the soul of the any vehicles including diesel trucks is the
engine for it power the entire vehicle to move. Thus, it is what you should
consider before anything else. Even though there are a few types of diesel
engines such as the common-rail diesel engines, turbo-diesels or in some cases,
a combination of both, most trucks have the same type of diesel engine under
its hoods which differ only in its cubic capacity. Before choosing the right
engine, you must first decide how much power is adequate and how much is
overpowered or underpowered to give a sluggish driving experience.

Apart from the basic purpose of getting you and your load from destination A to
destination B, diesel trucks nowadays also has increased in its comfortability
with some offering luxuries such as cup holders, armrests, leather seats and a
lot more. But do remember, all these do not comes cheaply and will be added to
the overall cost.

The next important consideration is whether to buy a diesel truck with a single
cab or a double cab. Although this is not a hard decision to be made, one must
realize the pros and cons of having an extra row of seats. Surely it will be
handy when you have passengers to carry but when you don’t, the extra weight will decrease the performance and mileage of the diesel
truck.

In terms of practicality, the accessibility and space of the trucks’bed must also be taken into consideration as some trucks do not has sufficient
surface friction to prevent the cargo from moving around during the journey or
the beds suffer from space intrusions from the rear wheels. In addition,
availability of support for canopies must also be thoroughly considered.

In a nutshell, a good diesel truck is one with an engine capable of powering
the vehicle even under the harshest driving condition combined with good fuel
consumption efficiency and providing great comfort at the same time.

?An Insight to the Chevrolet Silverado

The all new 2009 Chevrolet Silverado falls under the category of the large-size pickup trucks. The vehicle will be powered by the latest V8 turbo diesel engine, but its release has been delayed due to the weak financial position of the General Motors. There won’t be too many extra changes in the 2009 Silverado and comes in three different styles like the crew cab style, extended and the regular cab style model. The models shares most of the features from the GMC Sierra.

The extended cabs come with the rear hinged doors that do not independently open the fronts. The regular cab model comes with the 3-passenger capacity while the crew and the extended models provides up to 6-seating capacity. The new Silverado provides two different types of interior designs, luxury inspired and the pure pickup styles. Based on the model and design configuration of the model, it offers 4.3 liter V6 that produces 195 hp, 4.8 liter V8 that produces 295 hp, 5.3L V8 that produces 315 hp, 6.0 liter V8 367 hp and the 6.2L V8 that produce 403 hp. The 5.3 liter V8 versions and all the 6.2 liter V8 engine models come with the capability to run on the E85 ethanol blended fuel.

The rear wheel drive will be standard in all the models. Different types of suspensions will be made available to provide the added comfort. The proposed safety features in the vehicle include traction control system, ABS, curtain side air bags and the anti skid system. Other features expected in the 2009 Silverado are wireless cell phone link, remote engine start and new navigation system.

Here are some sizzling Chevrolet Silverado Pictures released by Chevy in last few weeks.

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