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propane power

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by original balzer, Apr 18, 2005.

  1. original balzer

    original balzer 1/2 ton status

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    i did a search didnt come up with much but anyone KNOW much about it so far i have learned that LPG is about 112 octane and runs well with higher compression and that factory propane cars has a cam built for propane also the aussies have a 9 second propane car so my real question is does anyone actualy know how to build a propane engine with low end power?
     
  2. pauly383

    pauly383 Daddy383 Staff Member Moderator

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    I can't how to build the internals for propane , but these local guys in my area can help http://gotpropane.com/
     
  3. mr_clean

    mr_clean 1/2 ton status

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    There is also a writeup over on Pirate about a propane conversion...
     
  4. Larry_in_Tx

    Larry_in_Tx 1/2 ton status

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    Yep here’s the link Pirate

    and a couple of others I saved for my day dreaming

    gotpropane.com

    propaneguy.com
     
  5. pauly383

    pauly383 Daddy383 Staff Member Moderator

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    I have seen a truck on its side with the gotpropane kit , damn thing styed running until he shut it off :D

    The only thing is it smells like a rolling barbeque grill ;)
     
  6. Larry_in_Tx

    Larry_in_Tx 1/2 ton status

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    That and how clean it burns is really getting me checking into it. I’m waiting around to find someone with a kit on a big block to see how it’s working out for them before I open the wallet…well that and I have to put something in the wallet to start with.

    With cost in mind I think I’ll run the propane instead of doing FI on my truck.
     
  7. Nonesuch

    Nonesuch 1/2 ton status

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    Ryeguy (used to be on here) ran an Impco 425 mixer on top of his Cad 472. He said it lacked in the upper RPM range but at lower RPM's it ran like a kitten. propaneguy has an intake manifold to bolt up two Impco 425's for more CFM. I run one 425 on my 350 as well as 4 of my other buddies. We all love the 'pane. I have a 125,000 mile vette 350 in my K5. I swapped it in and it was full of carbon build up. I hooked up the propane to it and the oil comes out golden like the day I poured it out of the quart. You can check out several propane trucks at www.austink5.net if you want. I have a write up in the tech section over there with some part sources.

    On another note, I know of a guy who converted a 8.1L Cummins diesel to spark ignition and ran straight propane on it with a mixer that only flowed 460 cfm. Again, this was a low RPM motor but it still made full power with it.
     
  8. original balzer

    original balzer 1/2 ton status

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    thanks guys im deffinatly leaning twards a propane engine now and a benifit is the BBQ grill permantly attached to my trail rig lol


    balzer
     
  9. Silver84k5

    Silver84k5 1/2 ton status

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    im Seriously looking into this.. buy a couple of questions.. would like answers from Firsthand witnesses

    How does the motor sound? the same?

    Does it smell like a forklift?

    Im running a 383, with 9.5-1 compression... Would i need to bump up the compression?

    im Really curious about the power changes.. in this post it says lacking upper RPM power... Does anyone else running propane have any more info to add about the power?
     
  10. 85mudblazin

    85mudblazin 1/2 ton status

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    yes it stinks and it sounds different then a carbed truck.
     
  11. Cornfield creations

    Cornfield creations 1/2 ton status

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    I wonder, if you used it in a DD if it would increase fuel economy with gas prices being so high right now?
     
  12. Hossbaby50

    Hossbaby50 3/4 ton status

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    From everything I have heard propane gets worse mileage then gas but it is cheaper so it kind of makes up for the difference. You will loose power, economy and probably cruise range with propane but it is a great option for trail trucks that don't need alot of horsepower. It is cheap and easy to convert to propane and it will run at any angle. The systems are usually very simple which is great for an offroad truck since there is less stuff to go wrong.

    Harley
     
  13. blazin_blazer

    blazin_blazer 1/2 ton status

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    propane vs gas mileage

    you get about 9/10ths of a mile from propane...so its not horrible...you lose 1 tenth of your mileage and the cost well over exceeds that little loss
     
  14. Silver84k5

    Silver84k5 1/2 ton status

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    What about building a motor Specifically for propane... High compression... What else would it need... im not too savvy with that stuff yet...
     
  15. sledheadak

    sledheadak 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    wondetr how it would work with 9.5 comp engine with a supercharger on it.
     
  16. AussieK5

    AussieK5 1/2 ton status

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    Ive run propane engines for years and recently built another engine up (my third for LPG). If you build it specifically for LPG you wont see any power loss over a petrol engine (92-96 octane).
    They run and sound just like a petrol engine.
    Cold starts are a breeze because of the homogenous nature of the fuel and the top end is only restricted by the size of the mixer, same as a under carbed pertol engine.
    You will see power loss if you run a dual fuel setup because of the mixer having to be placed (usually) above the carb causing a constriction. I wont run a dual fuel set-up, I have in the past and recomend them to very few people.

    Some standard setup points for a straight propane engine:

    Compression: up to 10.5:1 (depends on the application and heads ie alloy heads vs iron and trail truck vs heavy hauler)

    Timing: 10 deg at crank, Full adv by 2250 - 2500, If you tow max total adv should not exceed 30 deg.

    Ignition: GM HEI considered a minimum standard, good leads and plugs also required.

    Plugs: at range colder, maybe 2 depending on where and how you drive

    Heat: Get rid of any heat risers etc that transfer heat to the fuel, LPG is gas and does not need it. This is a big thing, cool the intake charge and you will see a good change in power and economy.

    Intake: Any single plane manifold with raised runners will give good service. It will idle like petrol factory manifold and run to what ever RPM you want. The raised runners help reduce intake charge temps.

    Heads and Valves: Hardend seats and a good valve job, concentric seats, 45 deg face angles, no interference angle. Valve seats between 1/16 - 3/32 depending on the application

    Rings and pistons: Whatever pistons you want for your application and if you want chrome rings break them in on petrol for a 1000 miles first otherwise it will take anywhere up to 60K to bed them on propane.

    Cam: whatever suits you application really, you can get LPG specific cams here but they cost $$$ and the gains are almost negligible.

    My K20 gives 11mpg on the highway with 4.56 and no OD. Unleaded is $1.30 AUD a litre at the moment and LPG is 42c.... :D

    HTH If you want any specific questions answered I'm more than happy to advise.

    Jason
     
  17. kgblazerfive

    kgblazerfive keymaster Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    My set up is dual fuel and the only difference that I can tell is the gas has a better throttle response. My truck has not been tuned to run on Propane either I think it was installed from day one and thats it. There aren't too many things that I don't like about the system.
     
  18. tiger9297

    tiger9297 1/2 ton status

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    Lots of farmers around here run propane trucks but I have noticed they have a huge tank in the bed. How big does the tank really have to be to get decent range? LxWxH?? Would it be something that could fit under a K5?


    I have even seen some of them blow up a flat tire with it. Guess that's good if ur in the middle of no where.
     
  19. Silver84k5

    Silver84k5 1/2 ton status

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    Thx.. that was very helpful

    Although... Gas is only a 1.30 in austrailia? Wtf is that all about.. .
     
  20. gotmud77

    gotmud77 1/2 ton status

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    Thats $1.30 per liter :D
     

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