HOMEMADE FUEL

Homemade Fuel 3:23 (CNN Video)
People are converting their cars to run on alternative energy, such as used vegetable oil, to avoid high gas prices.

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{Thanks Wendy for the email alert!}

How We Got Into Homebrewing Our Own Fuel

After simple living, smoothering the lawn, growing food, raising citified farm animals and energy elements were tackled here on the urban homestead the next step was alternative transportation-fuel.

We had our bikes, did a lot of walking, staycationing, reducing trips and we had an old 1976 VW avocado colored camper, but it needed some serious work.

So, back in the summer and fall of 2003 we got to researching about veggie oil being used as a fuel for diesel cars. Should we go SVO or biodiesel? Convert the car or convert the oil? After months of reading and research we opted to convert the oil and not the car. Biodiesel was recognized by the EPA as a “fuel” and we didn’t want to go about tinkering with cars, besides, we heard some first hand horror stories from those who took SVO route. So with the information we had at the time, we started down the homebrew biodiesel path.

While searching how to brew biodiesel we stumbled onto bio-homebrew activist’s Maria Alovert’s homemade biodiesel processor which uses a simple water heater. We thought to ourselves, “hey we can do that!”  Best of all the parts for the processor were all accessible and relatively cheap.

Another search lead to some local folks who were tinkering with making the first homebrew processor in LA. So we hooked up and with the help of bio enthusiast folks in the community we built the first biodiesel reactor in LA and brewed our first batch of biodiesel in January 2004. To celebrate this event we hosted the first Biodiesel Mixin’ Mixer in LA.

From the beginning we have stressed that biodiesel is a band-aid solution. We are in no way advocating biodiesel as a solution to the world’s out of control fuel consumption. 

Our family has only one car – an old, second hand ’88 Chevy Suburban which we use with care – driving less than 4,000 miles a year. We also have a unique situation, the used/waste grease we get from our produce clients means we don’t “dumpster dive” for waste oil, almost all of our customer deliver the oil to us.

The best form of transportation now and for the future is two feet, two wheels or four legs.  Blackberry and Fairlight could do a bit of hauling

Comments(7)

  1. Chicago Mike says:

    Justin comes across well, and I really like how they make sure and point out that what Justin is doing is LEGAL. I loath the fact that what they others are doing is considered unlawful. What a joke.

  2. Chicago Mike says:

    Justin comes across well, and I really like how they make sure and point out that what Justin is doing is LEGAL. I loath the fact that what they others are doing is considered unlawful. What a joke.

  3. plantainpatch says:

    Good video! Do you have to pay any federal taxes in addition to .18 state tax?

    Thanks!

  4. plantainpatch says:

    Good video! Do you have to pay any federal taxes in addition to .18 state tax?

    Thanks!

  5. Yves RENSON says:

    Hi,

    I’m very impressed by the job done with your family.

    As I was trying to look the video about biodiesel, I landed on the CNN website instead of opening the requested video directly. You could change the link on your website, I just copied it here: http://money.cnn.com/video/news/2008/07/01/news.gutierrez.homemadegas.cnnmoney/
    Hoping to start my own european homestead as soon as possible, I’ll sure come back to you & your site to prepare my project.
    Best wishes for an endless success in your wonderfull homestead.

    From East-Belgium with admiration and respects,

    Yves RENSON

  6. Yves RENSON says:

    Hi,

    I’m very impressed by the job done with your family.

    As I was trying to look the video about biodiesel, I landed on the CNN website instead of opening the requested video directly. You could change the link on your website, I just copied it here: http://money.cnn.com/video/news/2008/07/01/news.gutierrez.homemadegas.cnnmoney/
    Hoping to start my own european homestead as soon as possible, I’ll sure come back to you & your site to prepare my project.
    Best wishes for an endless success in your wonderfull homestead.

    From East-Belgium with admiration and respects,

    Yves RENSON

  7. Brian Jones says:

    Guys, I have to hold my hat off to you all, you are a true inspiration.

    Myself and my wife are looking to move to self sufficiency on food, power, water and fuel, and this video has inspired us.

    Thanks guys, and if you are ever in the UK, pop in for coffee…

    B 🙂

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