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  #1  
Old 01-28-2008, 09:47 PM
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Multi-fuel engine question

http://reno.craigslist.org/rvs/552027981.html

If you scroll down thru the pictures at the bottom you can see that the engine will run on either diesel or gasoline. Can anyone explain how this is possible? Does a person need to make mechanical changes to the engine in order for this to happen?

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  #2  
Old 01-28-2008, 10:20 PM
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A turbine will burn anything, but this is some sort of (spark assisted?) compression engine...

The M1A1 will "burn anything you can put in the tank", so one of my co-workers got the first one in Germany. They burnt diesel, kero, JP4, JP8, gasoline, and alcohol (which produced a 20' flame jet), along with motor oil (I think cut with gas), hydraulic fluid, etc.
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  #3  
Old 01-28-2008, 10:25 PM
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That's the way the engine was designed. The military needed an engine that would burn practically any fuel you put in the tank. If you do a web search you'll lots of interesting information on the Continental multi fuel engines. They didn't produce much power. If you take a good look in one of the photos you'll notice one of the tags on the dash says not to exceed 56 MPH in top gear. Also the speedometer tops out at 60. And they only get about 7 MPG!
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Last edited by lietuviai; 01-28-2008 at 10:42 PM.
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  #4  
Old 01-28-2008, 10:41 PM
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How does it run on such a wide variety of fuels when putting gasoline in our diesels will ruin them?
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1977 300d 70k--sold 08
1985 300TD 185k+
1984 307d 126k--sold 8/03
1985 409d 65k--sold 06
1984 300SD 315k--daughter's car
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1999 Fuso FG Expedition Camper
1993 GMC Sierra 6.5 TD 4x4
1982 Bluebird Wanderlodge CAT 3208--Sold 2/13
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  #5  
Old 01-28-2008, 10:46 PM
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There's a basic explanation of the principle behind the operation of the multi-fuel engine.
http://www.tpub.com/content/engine/14081/css/14081_20.htm
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84 300D Turbodiesel 190K with 4 speed manual sold in 03/2012
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Old 01-28-2008, 10:50 PM
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Part of it has to do with the fact that the rated power is pretty low for the size of engine that it is. Also, the engine has (trying to remember here) a "viscosity compensator" or something like that in the fuel system. The tech manuals I've read aren't very specific on how it works. I do remember labels on those trucks warning not to run them on AvGas, or maybe it was not to exceed a certain percentage which I want to say was 30%, but that may have been the limit for regular gas. We always ran them on diesel or once in a while JP-8, though I've heard someone from another service mention that multi-fuel trucks are a good way to get rid of the results when someone mistakenly fills a gasser with diesel or vice versa.

No mechanical changes needed when running different fuels, just fill and go.
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Old 01-28-2008, 10:53 PM
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The fuel pump (American Bosch) has a viscosity adjustment on it, can be adjusted to run a thin fuel like gasoline, and thicker oils.
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Old 01-28-2008, 11:09 PM
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Originally Posted by kerry View Post
Can anyone explain how this is possible?
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  #9  
Old 01-28-2008, 11:26 PM
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The technology has been around for 50+ years. Unfortunately because of it's emissions, it's not a technology that could be used anymore today.
If you have ever seen a convoy of these trucks on the road, the smoke trail was not unlike that of a locomotive.
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84 300D Turbodiesel 190K with 4 speed manual sold in 03/2012
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  #10  
Old 01-29-2008, 12:44 AM
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It's a little sad that the guy put so much work into the camper -- which looks like it never got used.

This would make a good hunting camper - could navigate logging roads, etc.
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  #11  
Old 01-29-2008, 12:57 AM
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When I was in the Army back in the mid 60s, our 2 1/2 and 5 ton trucks had the Continental multi-fuel engines. They would run, without adjustment, on any fuel but 100 octane AVgas. The 5 ton truck was turbocharged and had the highest top speed of any of our vehicles, somewhere around 73-75 mph. It also made big smoke and the exhaust pipe which came out behind the cab, pointed towards the ground; giving nearby pedestrians a great clue as to which fuel we might be burning that day.
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Old 01-30-2008, 01:20 AM
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That's a cool rig!
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  #13  
Old 01-30-2008, 02:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Chas H View Post
When I was in the Army back in the mid 60s, our 2 1/2 and 5 ton trucks had the Continental multi-fuel engines. They would run, without adjustment, on any fuel but 100 octane AVgas. The 5 ton truck was turbocharged and had the highest top speed of any of our vehicles, somewhere around 73-75 mph. It also made big smoke and the exhaust pipe which came out behind the cab, pointed towards the ground; giving nearby pedestrians a great clue as to which fuel we might be burning that day.
The fuel injection pumps (made by American Bosch) on these engine had a device inside called “the fuel density compensator” that worked off of the specific gravity of the fuel that was being used. This helped the fuel injection pump to further regulate the amount of the various concoctions of fuel that would be available for injection.
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Old 01-30-2008, 10:53 AM
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I have wondered how they did that. We always had diesel on hand because other vehicles didn't have a multifuel capability, so we never tried to run them on gas. A few of our gas engined vehicles did try to run on diesel, with no success.
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Old 01-31-2008, 12:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chas H View Post
I have wondered how they did that. We always had diesel on hand because other vehicles didn't have a multifuel capability, so we never tried to run them on gas. A few of our gas engined vehicles did try to run on diesel, with no success.
Running the multifuel diesel on straight gas will ruin something;the fuel injection pump first as gasoline will not lube the fuel delivery part of it. There is a/are formul/s on what to mix with the gasoline to make it more compatiable. The most commonly avaliable one was motor oil.
There was a thread several months ago on alternate fuels and the multifuel engine came up, there was more detailed info in that thread.

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