110LL Avgas "Horrid thing to do. Avgas is no bueno for a motorcycle"

Discussion in 'Trials' started by Jonny360, Jan 19, 2018.

  1. tomatoe333

    tomatoe333 Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,619
    Location:
    Back on the east side
    Ryan Young recommends 91 octane or better pump gas for the Sherco bikes that he sells. We're lucky here in eastern Upstate NY to have a chain of gas stations that carries 91 octane ethanol-free gas, so I run that.

    My old air-cooled Beta would ping a little bit on 93 octane with 10% ethanol, but it was happy as a clam on 91 ethanol free. The plastic Acerbis gas tank that it had would swell slightly with the ethanol-laden gas, enough to make it hard to put the gas cap back on. Same with the plastic Acerbis gas tank in my Gas Gas enduro bike.
    #61
    Champe likes this.
  2. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 49 years Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2013
    Oddometer:
    7,484
    Location:
    ABQ NM & Wichita Mountains OK
    Champe, I use a lot of E10 in various machines, so I have it around to blend with racing fuel.

    After splash bending with racing fuel the ethanol fuel is maximum 5% of the mix.

    An upside is I never have water globs rolling around on the bottom of the float bowl. Whatever little bit of water does get into my fuel is integrated and passes through.

    My most vintage bike is my '89 Fantic. I've noticed the Acerbis fuel tank has grown a bit in 29 years, but not enough to cause problems. The front mount hole's rear edge is hard up against the frame post. There are so many constituents in my fuel that I don't know, really, what would be the cause.

    This bike has sat for up to three years at a time with fuel with ethanol fuel in the tank. It ALWAYS starts second kick, but then again I ALWAYS run the fuel completely out before parking it.

    Any bike parked more than a few weeks is better off having the carburetor fuel run or drained out or the fuel chemistry of the low volume of fuel will evolve in negative ways. This, due to the interaction with the atmosphere via the float bowl vent(s).

    I have had no problems storing E10 longer term because my containers and fuel tanks are sealed, and I buy my fuel from the family business which moves E10 in very high volumes.

    Water already in E10 or introduced, such as poorly-sealed fuel tanks or containers left out in the rain, is a long-term storage disaster for fuels, especially fuels containing the fuel ethanol. Once ethanol has absorbed it's maximum of water, which if memory serves is around 7% by weight, it will 'saturate' and nasty things will start happening over time.

    I have come to live with - more like put up with - E10. Ethanol is a simple fuel. It has unfortunately become a whipping boy to blame for all sorts of problems, and its dogmatic avoidance can border on the religious.

    Ethanol is not as energy dense as gasoline, and it is hydrophilic, so I don't welcome being forced by government to use high percentages of it.

    We and markets find ways to comply with or go around government decrees, and in both cases costs usually increase. Thankfully trials bikes don't use a lot of fuel!

    And Hoss' observation has been mine as well. I have had to deal with problems related to use of 100% exotic fuels, and had resolutions just by changing the fuel.

    The customer likes the thought of exotic fuels sometimes too much. Only the best! I suggest cutting 'the best' by half with regular gasoline and the problems usually cease.
    #62
  3. Champe

    Champe Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2015
    Oddometer:
    803
    Location:
    Belmont, NH
    Right on. It's no use badmouthing any of the available fuels. They all serve a purpose. None are totally safe. Pick your poison.

    I have an 84 Fantic and a 78 Maico with plastic tanks, and a TLR200 with a fiberglass tank No alcohol for them - but I think running some E10 and draining it right after use would be ok. Too much work though. I always have avgas on hand for lawn equipment and chainsaws. I have lost 2 pro level Husqvarna chain saws to ethanol ( so says my repair shop). The carbs got ruined and are no longer available.

    Why are you using racing fuel as opposed to avgas ? You know you are paying a lot more for it, right ?
    A lot of the riders I know that use race gas just do it out of convenience. The airport may be too far away or unfriendly to outside sales. But after paying $75 for a 5 gal drum, I would think they would make the effort.
    #63
  4. I use race fuel because there's nowhere I can get avgas nearby. I also don't buy it in drums because I can get it at the pump, and pay 10/gallon. If I couldn't pump it, I'd just run E10 because I don't really want to deal with all the 5 gallon pails, or pay the extra for it.
    #64
    motobene likes this.
  5. Kiharaikido

    Kiharaikido Long timer Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Oddometer:
    1,060
    My county doesn't allow non-aviation avgas sales. I am lucky to be able to get it. We do have a few gas stations with pumps that are non-ethanol, though.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #65
    slicktop likes this.
  6. Champe

    Champe Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2015
    Oddometer:
    803
    Location:
    Belmont, NH
    What country is that ? I thought we had the lead in stupid laws here in the USA.
    #66
  7. Kiharaikido

    Kiharaikido Long timer Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Oddometer:
    1,060
    County aka Rutherford county NC, USA


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #67
  8. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2011
    Oddometer:
    12,108
    Location:
    nm
    Trying to keep them Dukes of Hazard boys from getting any good fuel.:imaposer
    #68
    slicktop, Norman Foley and jonnyc21 like this.
  9. Champe

    Champe Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2015
    Oddometer:
    803
    Location:
    Belmont, NH
    OK, it is the USA. No surprise. But a pipsqueek entity like a county banning avgas sales to the public ? Boo.
    Oh wait - I think I see a grey market money making opportunity here. Goverments are good for something.

    You fly that chopper ? What is it ? Kind of dark in the hangar.
    #69
    jonnyc21 and Norman Foley like this.
  10. rubicon1979

    rubicon1979 Private Dancer

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Oddometer:
    225
    Location:
    Alexander City, Alabama
    Yea my local airport tries to act like that. I told them I've got an ultralight that's a never ending work in progress.
    #70
    fprintf, jonnyc21 and Hoss Cartright like this.
  11. Kiharaikido

    Kiharaikido Long timer Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2016
    Oddometer:
    1,060
    I don't fly it. Marine Corps decommissioned the CH-46 Sea Knight, sadly.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #71
  12. PMK

    PMK Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    Oddometer:
    609
    Location:
    SoFlo, USA
    FWIW, many times they will not sell Avgas because of certain taxes that are to be collected for road vehicles.

    As I mentioned, pretty easy to get for me as I am around the airport. If not, some of the Lake Okeechbee marinas have Avgas for the airboats, or the local specialty fuel supplier has it also.
    #72
    Hoss Cartright and slicktop like this.
  13. PMK

    PMK Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    Oddometer:
    609
    Location:
    SoFlo, USA
    This is a good video about what happens to ethanol additives in fuel.

    Yes it is a Yamaha ad. As I mentioned previously, this has been the one product that has prevented internal carb corrosion in the lawn equipment.



    Our road machine is a Can Am Spyder. On trips where we burn full tanks of fuel I do not add Fuel Med RX. Anytime I know the Spyder will have fuel in the tank more than 2 weeks, the fuel is conditioned with Fuel Med RX.

    I prefer Avgas for the dirt bikes, but anything except cars that runs pump gas most times has the fuel treated.

    Here in SoFlo we have almost constant high humidity. Pump gas just sucks up the moisture in the air. The moisture held in the fuel causes corrosion issues. Most people never see this, as the rubber parts have issues too.
    #73
  14. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 49 years Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2013
    Oddometer:
    7,484
    Location:
    ABQ NM & Wichita Mountains OK
    I watched the Yamaliquid video and listened carefully.

    The information is mostly factual and somewhat embellished, to sell product, obviously.

    If the mystery Yamaliquid does indeed allow long-term storage in carbureted bikes without draining float bowls it has value as a tool to use in road bikes with vacuum fuel cocks and very hard to get to float bowl drain screws.

    The discussion, however, passed right over a major issue of float bowls with their very low fuel volume relative to atmospheric exposure, addressing only a generic 'fuel system.'

    Emphasized was fuel tank vents, but venting with valves, and the large amount of fuel in a full gas tank (if fuller or full) greatly reduced atmospheric exchange relative to fuel volume. If one sources E10 from a place that moves a lot of fuel volume, and where tanks do not get rain and ground water in (trusted source), there should be very little, or no, appreciable water in the fuel.

    My KLR 250s at a NM cabin, for example. E10 in the tanks, mostly full or full. I drain the float bowl via the bowl drain at end of season. I store the bikes in an uninsulated garage. Storage times of 9 months a year are typical, and couple of times over 2 years.

    And every time it has been turn on the fuel cock and fully open the choke. Kick twice key off. Turn on the key. Kick and they start on the first or at most second kick, and go on to run the same as before storage. Being at 9,000 feet, however, storage temperatures are lower, and humidity is lower, except during storms.

    On fuel injected systems you can't drain anything, but the fuel is very protected from the atmosphere throughout the system. I've had fuel get a little off in the injector and high pressure fuel line when we stored an BMWF650 2 years. Oops! Didn't run 100% a few minutes minutes, then straightened up with the fuel from the tank.

    In the above situation, there could be value added with a 'stabilizer' product, but I never intended to let the bike sit that long!

    The additives industry thrives on feel good and assurance. Sometimes additives do positive things and are worth the money. Yes, I am more of a skeptic, and often have no great way to personally test claims other than to long-term store with fuel in float bowls, which is something I avoid doing.
    #74
  15. PMK

    PMK Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    Oddometer:
    609
    Location:
    SoFlo, USA

    Aside from the preservation of the fuel, do you have an opion on the salts and corrosion associated with ethanol fuels. The corrosion is often the greater problem in float carbs, whereas rubber failure is more common in non float diaphragm carbs such as in chainsaws or lawn equipment.

    Not sure of the truth or accuracy of the exact reduction in octane, however that seems acceptably accurate.
    #75
  16. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 49 years Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2013
    Oddometer:
    7,484
    Location:
    ABQ NM & Wichita Mountains OK
    PMK, I've never had corrosion issues with 10 to 5% ethanol by volume or weight. If there is any corrosion, it is quite small.

    Ethanol is chemically simple, no? I thought corrosion is primarily ionic in nature. I should look up metals corrosion and refresh on what does and does not do that and why.

    More evils are attributed to the fuel ethanol than are actually caused by ethanol. As much as I dislike the government's RFS scheme, I do not detest ethanol, per se.

    Are any special precautions taken against corrosion of metals in fuel systems in machines that burn 100% methanol? Methanol, perhaps, but not that far off chemically.

    In Brazil I found many a ratty old vehicle running 100% ethanol. I looked under the hood of one. Same old carb and fuel components from ancient history. Ethanol in Brazil is cheaper than gasoline, even considering the reduced mileage from lower energy density, so some run it exclusively.
    #76
    jonnyc21 likes this.
  17. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 49 years Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2013
    Oddometer:
    7,484
    Location:
    ABQ NM & Wichita Mountains OK
    Looked at a Czeck paper on corrosion with ethanol fuels. Corrosion was once again a problem evolving from water contamination and not directly from ethanol.

    A couple of years ago I forgot to drain the float bowls on a KLR650 and KLX, which sat a year. No start on both resulted in opening up the carbs.

    I found the brass nozzles green and corroded and with whitish gunk here and there.

    I blamed me, not solely E10, for allowing the low fuel volume in the bowl to be exposed many months to atmospheric water absorption via float vents.

    In pre-E10 days a brown resinous gunk would have resulted, with less tiny nozzle hole clogging. Yes, less severe relative to the months of exposure, but still a problem and still my fault :-)
    #77
    jonnyc21 likes this.
  18. Buschog

    Buschog Long timer

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    Oddometer:
    1,289
    Location:
    Carson City, NV
    >>> clipped >>>

    I think that's the point that gets left off of most evil ethanol discussions.
    #78
  19. Norman Foley

    Norman Foley Devotee of the Husqvarna Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Oddometer:
    4,629
    Location:
    New York... The Finger Lakes
    It used to take much longer for old gas to mung up a carb, than ethanol gas does now.
    #79
    Bonalan65 likes this.
  20. motobene

    motobene Motoing for 49 years Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2013
    Oddometer:
    7,484
    Location:
    ABQ NM & Wichita Mountains OK
    True.

    But with so much of the stuff around it pays to know why.
    #80
    Norman Foley likes this.