Fuel Conversion: An Experimental Dual Fuel Truck

With the right tools and know-how, you can carry out an alcohol fuel conversion in a few hours.

| September/October 1979

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    The truck that underwent the alcohol fuel conversion was nothing exotic—just a regular Chevy.
    PHOTO: MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
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    Then remove the float assembly and unscrew the brass main jet.
    MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
  • 059-alcohol-fuel-conversion-step1.jpg
    The first conversion step is to remove the air horn from the float bowl.
    MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
  • 059-alcohol-fuel-conversion-step3.jpg
    If possible, use part of the carburetor as a "mount" while you enlarge the jet about 40%.
    MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF

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  • 059-alcohol-fuel-conversion-step2.jpg
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There's certainly nothing special about a 10-year-old pickup truck, but when that same vehicle can drive—indefinitely—without ever having to stop at a gasoline station to fill up ... well, then the highway veteran becomes something worth writing home about!

No, MOTHER EARTH NEWS hasn't developed a perpetual motion engine, but her researchers have succeeded in adjusting the above-mentioned vehicle's powerplant so that it runs on pure homemade alcohol fuel. The fuel conversion wasn't at all difficult, either. In fact, it can be done (in less than two hours!) on just about any vehicle manufactured today with tools you'd find in most anyone's workshop.

Alcohol Basics

There's no reason for alcohol not to be used as motor fuel. Some of the earliest "horseless carriages" ran on it exclusively, and even in modern times, aircraft and racing cars have taken advantage of the fuel's several benefits:

[1] Alcohol burns clean.



[2] The distilled fuel also acts as a cleaning agent within the engine.

[3] An alcohol-burning engine tends to operate at slightly cooler temperatures than does its gasoline-powered counterpart.






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