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Old 12-04-2008, 01:24 PM   #28 (permalink)
EV test pilot
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Location: Oconomowoc, WI, USA
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I did a little more reading on Ethanol and E85.

There are several kits about there for fuel-injected vehicles to convert to being a "flex-fuel" vehicle.

Basically, it's a little computer box that connects in-line with the fuel injector signals and the ECU.

It gives a longer fuel injector PWM signal and adjusts the timing as needed.

The web site for one that I was looking at is:
E85 conversion kits FLEX FUEL CONVERSIONS - Full Flex International is now Fuel Flex International- Full Flex Gold and ECO Flex Platinum USA Distributor flex fuel - Pulstar Spark Plugs

I looked and found that they have a local distributor in Wisconsin:
Flex Fuel Conversion Kits - E85 Conversion Kits - Drive Flex Fuel - Home Page

I was able to talk to Douglas Sr. on the phone for a while today. He was a pretty nice guy and helpful in answering a few of my questions.

When I asked, he said that a drop of 5-15% in fuel economy is pretty typical, although he did have one customer with an old Ford Explorer that actually went UP a tad.

He also said that there's no reason why the system shouldn't be able to do E100, assuming that I can find a good source for it.

I did call an ethanol refiner about an hours drive from me, but haven't heard back from them yet.

This E85 kit should allow me to go pretty much straight to E85, and hopefully to E100 later. I would still need to check the fuel filter and change that a while after converting, as ethanol likes to clean out the gas tank.

There is an E85 pump about 2 miles from my house, it there wasn't, I don't think I would even be considering this.

Starting a cold engine on E85 is still an issue. This conversion kit has "cold-start technology". Basically it has a temperature probe on it, and can run the fuel rich when you are starting in the cold. I would imagine a block heater would help with this as well.

Anyone have experience with E85 conversion kits or swapping out fuel injectors to run ethanol? Please share your experience.
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