Author Topic: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?  (Read 12590 times)

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Offline nomad

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Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« on: February 27, 2011, 09:46:39 PM »
Ok.  We all know that today's fuel (laced with ethanol) is bad all around for our older engines.  I've been looking and have found some additives that supposedly help to counteract the harmful effects of ethanol.  Has anyone ever used (or even heard about) these... or others?

Formula X2 - I saw them demonstrate this stuff on Ship Shape TV today.  They mixed it with a beaker of fuel that had water at the bottom.  When the product was mixed with the fuel/water mix, the water supposedly broke apart.  The guy said that the H was separated from the O2 (thus... no more water).  They also used the Sta-Bil marine version (below) and after mixing, the water settled back out into the bottom of the beaker.  They also had a piece of rubber fuel line they submerged in a jar for a month in regular gas (with E10) and a jar treated with this stuff.  The hose in the E10 was breaking down while the fuel treated with the Formula X2 was fine.  This could be snake oil... I just don't know.  I wasn't very good at chemistry.
http://formulax2.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=50


Sta-Bil Marine Formula - Like I mentioned above - when this stuff was mixed with a fuel/ water mix, the water settled back out at the bottom of the beaker. 
http://www.goldeagle.com/products/product3CC6.aspx


Sta-Bil Ethanol Treatment - I know nothing about this stuff.
http://www.goldeagle.com/products/10_oz_ethanol.aspx


So, what can you tell me about any of these additives?  Do any of them work?  Are they all snake oil?  Any other additives out there that you think works?  I really want to find a solution to this government induced problem before I get my bike back up and running.

'74 CB750K



Offline Nortstudio

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2011, 10:19:53 PM »
Forum member Gaither told me a while back to try techron.  He uses it to counteract the effects of ethenol.  I haven't tried it yet, but I thought about it again just today when I was staring at the 10% ethanol sign on the pump.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Techron

It's available as an additive.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2011, 10:24:35 PM by Nortstudio »
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Offline Gaither

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2011, 11:44:26 PM »
Nort +1. It is available at auto parts stores (likely also at big box stores). From what I can learn, Techron is a good useful product. I try to keep some in the tank. The mechanic I use occasionally recommends using it to counteract the ethanol crap.

Nomad, I saw part of that same infomercial. They made it look very good. Like you, I wonder about it. Seeing isn't always believing.

Ethanol has been giving outboard engines some terrible troubles! It is bad for any aircooled engine.

I am very disappointed IF what they demonstrated with Sta-bil is true. I (and LOTS of people) use it - particularly in winter months to preserve fuel condition.

That most of us are searching for ways to counteract what greed and congressional "voter bait" has forced upon us! Something is very rotten and it isn't in Denmark - it is in Washington!!!! Ethanol if gasoline is way past rediculous! We need a major public reaction on this ethanol mess!

Please let us know if you learn more about Formula X2. I'll be attempting to learn more for us, too.

Thanks
Gaither ('77 CB550F)



Offline nomad

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2011, 07:07:14 AM »
I've read a few good things about SeaFoam and it's ability to help older engines run ethanol.  I've also heard good things about this stuff for years (on automotive forums), but nothing specifically for it's gas/ethanol application.

http://www.seafoamsales.com/e-85-fuels-and-sea-foam.html

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Offline Nortstudio

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2011, 07:36:29 AM »
Nomad,

I have used the SeaFoam in my bike occasionally (I have been putting the red Sta-Bil additive in my tank regularly all winter at fill-ups) . 

I had read good things on this forum about Seafoam use as: a fuel additive, a way to free up stuck pistons, and even one member giving me tips on clutch issues recommended it for use in the oil to clean the clutch plates. 

I'm usually pretty skeptical about miracle 'snake oil' products, but based on the educated suggestions from forum members, this stuff seems to be the real deal.  Just not sure if it addresses the concerns for Ethanol.

In doing some quick research, it seems a lot of the info on the web is aimed at marine/boat owners.  A couple other names I found addressing Ethanol concerns are: Startron and Soltron. 

I have to admit that I have been acting on 2 parts trust, 1 part laziness with this issue.  Or maybe it's the other way around :)  I guess I have been hoping that if I am not getting excessive gunk in my carbs, and bad acting engine performance, that maybe these additives I have tried are actually working.

I'd love to hear more definitive answers though...

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Offline nomad

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2011, 07:45:05 AM »
I'd love to hear more definitive answers though...

Yeah, I would too.  But we'll probably never get anything that's truly definitive.  What we're stuck with is either the marketing info/ demonstrations from the companies selling the stuff, or we have end user testimonials and recommendations.  And like I mentioned before, SeaFoam seems to get a lot of praise from the end user.  That, more than anything else, is making me think I may be going the SeaFoam route when the time comes.

I also have several pieces of lawn maintenance equipment that probably could benefit from some sort of additive.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2011, 07:46:47 AM by nomad »
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Offline MRieck

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2011, 08:03:09 AM »
I have been using Star Tron for the past 18 months. It works well. Several of my bikes sit for extended periods. This is the only product that prevented clogged carbs. Stabil Marine Formula etc did not work. Techron is a injector cleaner. It is a good product but does not address the problems caused by fuel evaporation in the carb bowls.
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Offline Nortstudio

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2011, 08:04:19 AM »
I'm hoping that one of the old timers will chime in.  

I know that after reading many posts on the subject, TwoTired schooled me about the facts and myths of different motor oils.  I know that this has the potential to be a raging debate, like the oil one.  As you have mentioned, the fact that so many people seem to have experienced benefits from SeaFoam, makes it appealing.  

That's not to say that public opinion has never swayed consumers down the wrong path, but here's hoping that this one is for real! :)
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Offline 333

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2011, 08:09:31 AM »
Sea Foam absolutely deals with the ethanol issue.  You should be using it in any air cooled engine, 2 or 4 stroke.  The smaller the engine is, combined with higher revs, creates more heat.  The ethanol turns into carbon in these situations, and the Sea Foam helps in stopping this from happening.
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Offline 736cc

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2011, 08:13:34 AM »
Here's a technical synopsis on ethanol; summed-up, its bad for high-performance motors, older motors, aircraft, and reduces fuel economy in all vehicles by 25%
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethanol_fuel
My buddy runs a boatyard and its a constant problem for boat owners (but not for the repairman, of course!) as it doesn't store for long because it absorbs water from the air. A typical boat fuel tank needs to be completely pumped-out if its not used for a couple of months, and older tanks need replacement, along w/ fuel pumps, lines etc. What does he do w/ all that bad gas from all those boats? Well, he pumps it into a 50 gallon translucent drum, lets the fuel/water separate (its quite visable), sets up an osmosis seperator fuel pump and puts the now separated gas into his pickup truck- FREE GAS!

He also told me a good winter motorcycle storage tip- add some 2 stroke oil to your gas tank, run it a while and it will stabilize your fuel and coat some oil to your gas tank, motor cylinders and exhaust. I tried this, bike runs  fine when I start her up occasionaly, and have no plug-fouling. Runs as usual, maybe a little rich.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2011, 08:19:41 AM by 736cc »
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Offline fmctm1sw

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #10 on: February 28, 2011, 08:22:50 AM »
If you are lucky, you can still find a station that sells 100% gas.  It's puregas.com or something like that...
re: burnouts thread 
Quote from: 754
Dude is that a tire ? or an O-ring..??

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Offline kayjohn

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2011, 08:49:45 AM »
Star Tron for us here in AZ. We rode all summer with no probs. in the fall we went for a ride after putting some Marvel mystery oil. two of our bikes started having sticking throttles. we filled up that night with premium for the next morning ride. the gray fuel line that slips on tight with no clamps swelled up and was leaking all over on one  bike. left on a 60 mile round trip with nothing but problems. more bikes with sticking throttles, missfires, more grey hose leaks and very poor fuel mileage. having two bikes run out only a couple of miles from the shop.
Thought we would go for one last ride two weeks later and not one of the five bikes would start and run. figuring bad gas and the mix of MMO I start pulling racks and cleaning. after doing three of them I read about Starbright's Star Tron. picked some up and added some to the other two bikes after adding some fresh gas because the left over gas that WAS their mysteriously disappeared. got them running but rough at first but with some riding around town they seem to be coming back around plus all the petcocks are working smoother.
After sitting for 6 weeks I fired up three over the weekend. they ran! rough at first but clear up after a few minutes.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2011, 08:54:27 AM by kayjohn »
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Offline Johnie

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #12 on: February 28, 2011, 08:52:34 AM »
We are getting more and more stations here with no ethanol blends. We have at least 2 now that are 100% ethanol free. Sure feels good to put the no ethanol in the bikes now.
John
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Offline Skunk Stripe

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2011, 08:57:53 AM »
There are actually a number of stations selling gas without ethanol. Around here, a common way to tell is price. If the price of midgrade is the same as regular or lower, in almost all cases, the regular is straight gas. Around here anyways, other states may vary. Premium is always straight gas but our bikes do not do premium well unless you have done engine mods changing the compression.
In some states, I think they have to inform you if the gas has ethanol but I do not know which states that is.

Although, aside from minor mpg loss(no where near 25% in any vehicle)I have had no issues with ethanol.
I HAVE noticed that in very cold weather, engines using gas with ethanol start better and do not suffer from gasline freezing.
So I can't stand with you guys on your reasons as I have just not seen it and lab tests are different from real world.
I still think ethanol is a bad idea as it requires more energy to make than it gives back and these plants producing ethanol receive LOADS of government subsidies to operate. Better starting in winter does not outweigh these cons and that is why I think ethanol is bad.



Offline Deltarider

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #14 on: February 28, 2011, 09:32:23 AM »
Quote
Premium is always straight gas but our bikes do not do premium well unless you have done engine mods changing the compression.
?
I do join you in the idea that producing ethanolfuel by subsidizing is a bad idea. It is wrong from an ethical point of view as is the subsidizing of the national cotton production.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2011, 09:34:31 AM by Deltarider »
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Offline Nortstudio

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #15 on: February 28, 2011, 10:11:52 AM »
Figures none of the stations listed on that site for NY are in new York City, or brooklyn.  Seem to be mostly upstate.  I will up my use of the SeaFoam, and hope for the best.  As I stated earlier, I have not had issues, as far as i can tell, but since I am a newb on all things CB, I defer to the wisdom here and the "better safe than sorry" route...


If you are lucky, you can still find a station that sells 100% gas.  It's puregas.com or something like that...
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Offline Skunk Stripe

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #16 on: February 28, 2011, 11:21:25 AM »
Delta, our bikes in stock trim, do not seem to benefit from high octane fuel. now if you increase the compression, then that can change.
Your octane ratings may be different, for us, premium is 92-93 octane at most stations.



Offline Deltarider

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #17 on: February 28, 2011, 12:02:18 PM »
Already in the 70s Honda Netherlands advised to tank super (premium) while - even then - our regular had a higher octane than in the US. Our bikes were usually tuned with a few extra degrees advance to enjoy extra bite and better drivability.
I don't know why in this forum this idea exists that regular is better than premium for our bikes. It's nonsense IMO. It's just because I can't see how much carbon there is in the combustionchambers, that I prefer to be on the safe side and tank super which parallels Honda's advice back then.
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Offline Skunk Stripe

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #18 on: February 28, 2011, 12:09:07 PM »
Fuel composition has changed since the 70s. But our bikes will not benefit from a higher octane. See a higher octane burns slower but with our weaker ignitions and lower compressions, unless you are running greatly advanced timing, high octane does not help.
I have tried it myself and while it is not a controlled environment, high octane did nothing to increase acceleration or mpg. Starting was not better and warm up times were no better.
Also, after reading a bunch of this, it seems to be the conclusion of Mike Reick, tt, and hondaman that without engine mods that increase advance or compression, higher octane is not needed. As such, why waste the money?



Offline Deltarider

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #19 on: February 28, 2011, 12:29:20 PM »
I do not state premium is better for our bikes than regular, but it is certainly not worse.
Quote
See a higher octane burns slower

That's academic and I challenge anyone that states this, to show that effect is noticable.
Every Honda mechanic I've known used to tune our engines with a few extra degrees advance.
 
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Offline Skunk Stripe

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #20 on: February 28, 2011, 01:49:45 PM »
Well then challenge accepted and blow away. I will post numerous links stating what I just said.
http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/2565/whats-the-difference-between-premium-and-regular-gas
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Octane_rating
http://www.state.mn.us/mn/externalDocs/Commerce/Gasoline_Octane_Facts_102902052227_OctaneFacts.pdf
http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/2003-07-30-premiumgas_x.htm
http://www.michigan.gov/mda/0,1607,7-125-1566_1733_23370-63247--,00.html
All these state that higher octane then what the engine requires will do nothing. Even with a few degrees of advance, the engine may not need premium.
Not only that but ratings are determined differently in the US compared to the rest of the world. The cb was designed to run just fine  on the fuel in the US, even regular.
Hey if you want to dump in premium because you think it is better, be my guest. I KNOW my bike runs absolutely fine on regular and so I save my money and give it what still works.



Offline Deltarider

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #21 on: February 28, 2011, 01:59:04 PM »
I will certainly read what you've posted,
Have you read what I wrote?
Quote
I do not state premium is better for our bikes than regular, but it is certainly not worse.
I've read more than once in this forum that regular would give better results. That's just bs IMO.
But I'll certainly go through your links.
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Offline 736cc

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #22 on: February 28, 2011, 02:16:31 PM »
Quote
I've read more than once in this forum that regular would give better results. That's just bs IMO.
Because regular costs less than premium it gives better economical results (duh)
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Offline Gaither

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #23 on: February 28, 2011, 11:38:01 PM »
FWIW

My Owner's Manual states, "Use low-lead or regular gasoline with a Research Octane number of 91 or higher or a Pump Octane number of 86 or higher. NOTE: Pump Octane is the octane formula specified by the Cost of Living Council."

Now, I gotta research "Research Octane" and "Pump Octane" to see which is which!

Now regretably, you can no longer buy leaded gasoline.

Around here, "regular unleaded" with or without ethanol is 87 Octane, by which standard, I don't know. Perhaps the sticker on the pump will state. I'll check and see.

I can find only one station within 10 miles that sells gasoline without ethanol and they charge 7 cents more for it. I use it when anywhere near practical. Hard to find here.

***IMHO, we collectively need to find out which additive is best to offset damage caused by crappy ethanol.
Gaither ('77 CB550F)



Offline TwoTired

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Re: Additives to counteract effects of ethanol fuel?
« Reply #24 on: March 01, 2011, 12:13:23 AM »
Now, I gotta research "Research Octane" and "Pump Octane" to see which is which!

See:
http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=78193.msg872153#msg872153

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