Diesel to woodgas

diesel truck to woodgas

It’s possible but harder than gasoline conversions. You need a source of ignition.

Try searching for “diesel”: http://driveonwood.com/search/node/diesel

Thinks chris i see its possible but alot more than i wont to get into, i need to get a ram v10 im pulling a 28 ft camper that weighs about 8000 lb, thinks again ,

Hi Jim
It’s easy to convert if you use pilot injection
Gives about 80% wood gas 20% fuel
I did a cat saw mill once and they claimed to have it almost 90% but thats a steady load
Good luck

BTW if you want to try it you need to limit the diesel input
The easyest way to do that on a power stroke is get a dummy manifold pressure guage (boost sensor) and plug the wire into it instead of the one on the truck that way you can go stock by just a wire change when you do this it limits the fuel to no boost condition//about 20–27% you can then trim it more by temp and map pressure adjustments
If I can find them i will post the drawings if you want to try it I did a good bit of work on powerstrokes for the gov doing EGR research
hope this helps

Hi Tom,

What compression ratio was that Cat when you converted it to run on wood gas? I read that you don’t want to go much over 17 to 1. I have a compact tractor with 23 to one that I wish I could convert but I don’t think it will work.

Don M

Hi tom thanks for the info ,I was just kicking around the idea, i dont know what the comprission ratio is;think its pretty high,

Hi Jim and Don
That cat was only about 16:1 or so the power strokes are higher but you can limit your boost to help we mainly did nat gas in the lab but i think wood gas will stand more comp then even nat gas
Intake temp plays a big role in that also we did research for the EPA WASTE OF TAX DOLLARS on HCCI homagenius charge compression ignition we actully controled the timing by the intake temp

Interesting your experience base ThomasMc
Mine has been servicing EFI systems out in service after years and even decades of use and neglect. Seen every sensor now age, contaminate and skew things - some times even favorably for either more power or better milage. But then always system was a bit unstable and tweeky. Bet that is what you ran into with HCCI strategy. Same thing made the “100 mpg” vaporizing carburetors impractical to safely use in real word driving.
Was Chris Seymour introduced me to the hacker dedicated EFI sensor Tweeker boxes.
Remapping the controller would be the ideal, but complicated and expensive and technically illegal for on road use.
Sensor tweeking is fun for many of us highmilers. Just have to invest the time to know what each sensor is doing, why, and when.

Steve Unruh

Hi Steve
Yes the hcci was tricky
It worked really good for stationary power the epa had dreams of having cars and trucks run it was as there line of thought usually is full of crap just a way to milk more tax money
Hcci works really good on #1 fuel or kerosene Super milage almost 0 nox and 70% of gasoline power but it doesnot like veriable load cause it changes the temps and pressures and there goes your timming control
yes i had fun working in research even found the oem’s were cheating on there emission controls
if you put the hood up on a dodge it ran real clean but shut the hood and drive 20 miles things got dirty and a cummins in a semi going up and down like the gov test had low nox but put it under steady load like pulling out west or climbing a mountain and the milage would go up 10% but the nox would increase 400% BAD BOYS LOL
But it was a fun 6 years

Hi everyone
I found out my 7.3 ps is 17.5-1 compression . im concerned about what woodgas will do going through the turbo.

1 Like

Hi Tomas MC
just now getting back to the idea of converting 7.3 to wood. sounds like you have alot of experience and good information on the 7.3.i would really appreciate all the infomration you could give me.
i have researched but cant come up with anything good.

I have done some research on pilot injection only one wood gas unit and i didn’t get to see it much
The cool thing about a woodgas diesel is you set the max restriction and then all you need is a butterfly for woodgas if the mixture is to rich it might be a little rough but if it’s lean well thats a misnomer no such thing as to lean in a diesel as it gets lean the power goes down but no roughness or backfires a normal diesel at full power is still somewhere between 19 and 30 to 1 if it was stoic you couldn’t see it for the smoke i’ll try to find some paper work and post it
bad thing is it always uses some diesel but then yOU haft to use some gas too so anyhoo
good luck

hey jim i forgot mention you can scew your timming with volume control pots on the oil,air and fuel temp sensors if you need a little more advance
the thing with a diesel is it only gets to about950–1000* with compression i’m not sure about woodgas but nat gas /methane needs about 1250 if i remember right hence the pilot injection comes in
diesel wil lite at 850 to 900* so it will lite and take the gas with it
They used to very the penatration of injection to taylor it but it seemed to work just as well with stock injectors i’ll try to find that info tonight
see ya

Tom, are you saying that I could run my Yanmar compact diesel tractor on woodgas with just a butterfly valve for speed control and pilot ignition? it has 23 to 1 compression. Is there enough vacuum to draw the gasifier and make gas?
Don M

hi don
yes but you need a second butterfly or some way to add restriction you could use a blower but then it would fume you a low power I have a 24hp yanmar that’s what i’m building my 8" WK to run
if you have any gasifier just stick the hose up to the intake and experiment with it
however depending on the model the new ones will shut the idle fuel off at about 1400 so you would have to give it a little throttle just to give it idle fuel at high rpm"s i don’t think you could run full rated power for it may knock but i have only run mine full power 2 or 3 times in the 30 years i have owned it sometimes i run full rpm’s but almost never full rack
good luck

Hi TomM.
Is your 30 year old 24hp Yanmar also a 3T90J like mine perhaps?

Steve Unruh

hi steve
I think it is a 240D
It’s a twin cylinder it’s not fancy but i would be lost without it
I probably won’t run on wood gas all the time but just wanted to have it in a pinch It doesn’t use much fuel anyway

What about using a Powerstroke diesel engine to sit stationary and run a sawmill? We have an extra one just sitting around doing nothing right now. We took it out of a Ford Superduty and put in a Cummins instead. De-stroked the Ford. :slight_smile: Works good, too! If the engine is just sitting under a shed and not in a truck, would that take care of some of the issues? What about using used veg. oil with the wood gas instead of diesel? Running a bandsaw isn’t going to be as bad of a load on the engine as having it in a truck with a full load of something…right?

Hi Clarence,

Diesels are harder. It’s not an issue of the load on the engine, or any additional complexity with the gasifier. The only difference is controlling the engine. You need a source of ignition, either a small stream of diesel as a pilot, or convert it to spark ignition. These are both non-trivial for the beginner.

Also keep in mind the compression ratio. Some newer engines run very high, around 22:1. Above 17:1 the woodgas will detonate, which will throw off the diesel’s timing and make it run very rough, even damaging the engine. The compression can be lowered using thicker headgaskets. Again non-trivial for the beginner. But it can be done.

Veggie oil will not make any difference to the woodgas, however it has its own issues for cold starting. I’d stick with plain diesel for the pilot stream unless you know exactly what you’re doing.