Running a T on alcohol

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2013: Running a T on alcohol
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Cameron Whitaker on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 02:37 pm:

Long story short, I have some real strong hootch that someone gave me. I want to show that you can start and run a T off of it to the museum that I volunteer at for tomorrow. I'm not talking much, just a float-bowl full of it. Enough to get it started and run for a few moments to give the crowd a good demonstration.

What does it take to start a T off of alcohol? Is there anything different that I need to do? Anything to be aware of?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 02:49 pm:

If the carb float is cork covered with shellac, the alky will dissolve it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 02:53 pm:

Oh, be ready for this one:

"Henry Ford designed his first car, the Model T, to run on ethanol."

Pure BS, and here's evidence: . . shellac carb floats, low compression ratio, etc.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry Horlick in Penn Valley, CA on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 03:17 pm:

I haven't tried this trick... yet. But if your car is set up to handle the "modern" ethanol containing fuels I believe it should handle the high ethanol content liquid you are proposing to use.

You will need to open the mixture a bit (I don't know how much). The liquid is not as volatile as gasoline/ethanol mix so you may not be able to start it on the "hooch". If you have a vaporizer carburetor you might be able to take a torch to the center of the carburetor to heat things up and then run the alcohol. Otherwise you will probably need to fill the bowl with gasoline to start the car and warm things up, THEN switch to your bottle of recreational ethanol. That way you can crank the mixture control open to keep the car running.

I suggest the above and that you record the opening you use for gasoline and the setting you use for alcohol. Then drive the car hard (warm it up) and do your presentation quickly. Perhaps you can shut the fuel off whilst the car is running and let it run out of fuel. Then quickly open the carb to the alcohol setting, and attach your fuel line to your jug (or pour some into a funnel attached to your fuel line), then quick before the car cools down start it and run it on alcohol. To make the demonstration a bit more dramatic you can drink some of the liquid from your jug (caveat... do you trust your supplier to be making ethanol and not methanol?).

My last suggestion is to test this out before you have an audience because you may be unable to start on the ethanol.

IMHO, TH


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Cameron Whitaker on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 03:31 pm:

Terry, thanks for your your helpful advice.

My car is set up to run on alcohol. Nothing but brass and copper all the way, including the float and fuel line.

I will certainly try to see if I can get the car started on the stuff or if I have to start it on gasoline, and do my demonstration accordingly. The last thing I want is to have a disappointed audience!

I already figured that I would at least pretend to take a sip before the actual demonstration, just to get the audience going! :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dennis Seth - Ohio on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 03:51 pm:

Be careful if you are holding the jug so you don't get burned if you have a backfire. You can't see an alcohol fire and could be on fire and not know it! keep the spectators at a safe distance.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry Horlick in Penn Valley, CA on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 03:56 pm:

Cameron, perfect! If you do take a sip before, be sure to fake additional sips along the way a-la Julia Childs, then do your best Foster Brooks impression throughout. You can't help but be the hit of the museum. I'd love to come and see the performance.

Be sure to watch any Foster Brooks performance to get the idea!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=brYfm0ktJ3E

TH


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Davis-SE Georgia on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 04:00 pm:

I ran my TT off of E-85 (85% ethanol/15% gasoline) for a year. Starts OK in the Summer. Winter required preheating the manifold with a torch. It needed a 1/4 to 1/2 turn more on the mixture.

What 'proof' is your 'hooch'? What may seem pretty strong to the tongue may not be that pure in the grand scheme of things. 100 proof has a pretty strong taste, but is only 50% ethanol, the rest being mostly water. It will likely take some of the first to come off your still to run an engine. 'High wine' ain't gonna do it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Harold Schwendeman - Sumner,WA on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 04:00 pm:

To add to what Ralph Ricks said above, if you do a Google or key word search, you'll find that some time ago, a thread about the Model "T" being originally "designed to run on alcohol" started what became quite a "war" here on the forum!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Cameron Whitaker on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 04:19 pm:

Hal, thanks a lot for your response.

I must admit, this stuff burns almost like pure ethanol. I put some in a spoon, and it gave me a nice blue flame for quite a while. I certainly don't dare drink this stuff, so why not make my car run off of it? The nice thing is that it's summer here in Texas, so I don't think that warming up the manifold will be necessary.

All I can say is that this stuff is smooth! *Coughs and hacks*


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By A. Gustaf Bryngelson on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 04:30 pm:

Be very careful if you are sipping alcohol that is high proof (above 150) as it is likely to cause tissue damage. Pure alcohol is anhydrous and will cause very bad damage is it comes in contact with delicate membranes.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Stefan Schaller on Friday, July 19, 2013 - 04:57 pm:

i run my car for years with alcohol and it work fine. just make les miles then with petrol


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mattthew G California on Saturday, July 20, 2013 - 12:34 am:

Cameron,
What kind of hootch do you have?

If you look on the forum you will find Tom Mullin posted Henry Ford's Interview on Alcohol as a Motor Fuel from The Detroit Evening News (sometime in November 1916)
http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/118802/Interview_between_Henry_Ford_and_the _Detroit_Evening_News-300-165480.pdf

In it you will find the following quotes:
"We have found that 160-proof alcohol works very well in the ordinary gas engine on our cars and tractors. But of course, better results could be obtained by modifying the engine somewhat to make it capable of much larger compressibility and, therefore, more adaptable for alcohol."

"Using alcohol in an ordinary Ford car, we are able to get 15 per cent more power than with the present gasoline, although the mileage covered was not quite so high. However, that is a matter of consumption which can be adjusted and regulated."

"We found 160-proof to work better than most any other grade. That combination of spirit and water seems to burn best in a gasoline engine."

I know that a number of folks on the forum have shared about their experiences with ethanol, but I believe the are referring to E-85 (i.e. 15% gasoline). Please share what results you get. It would be interesting to hear how 80% alcohol with 20% water does (i.e. 160-proof). Some people on this forum don't accept what Mr. Ford stated in 1916.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mattthew G California on Saturday, July 20, 2013 - 12:36 am:

Cameron,
I thought you might find the following interesting:

Agricultural Advertising, Volume 16 January 1907 Page 54 (see: http://books.google.com/books?id=NDs3AAAAMAAJ&pg=PA54&dq=%22henry+ford%22+alcoho l+auto&hl=en&ei=68vDTIiJNIussAOCs9TnCw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4&ve d=0CDwQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q&f=false )

[The following is all a direct quote from the Ford Motor Co. in January 1907:]
"Is automobiling merely a fad or has the automobile come to stay?" It would seem as if this question had long since been thrashed out on the roads and that it no longer calls for an answer. Perhaps some of the various phases of automobiling will prove to be fads, and we think the high speed craze has already about run its course. This is not to say that high speed automobiles will no longer be in demand, for we believe the very spirit of the times calls for speed and vitality, but in the early days the average man drove at the highest speed his car was capable of, in season and out of season, alike on country roads and crowded city streets.
In the form of commercial vehicles for the delivering of goods in the city, we believe the automobile will almost totally displace the horse within the next five years. It occupies less space—a factor that is becoming of greater importance every day in our congested cities— it is more cleanly, infinitely more sanitary and more economical in the sense that one truck will perform the work of three teams with their several drivers.

Mr. Henry Ford was a farmer before he was an automobile builder, and he still works the farm on which he was born, forty-one years ago.
Unlike other men who have made a financial success, farming is not a fad or a pastime with Mr. Ford. He takes quite as much interest in it as he docs in his automobile business and it is his boast that the Ford farm, augmented during the last few years by leasing adjoining properties, is not only self sustaining but pays handsome dividends. Not one dollar has ever gone from the automobile business to the farm, but on the contrary the farm supported Mr. Ford during the years when he was conducting expensive experimental work preparatory to building his first practical automobile.

Based on the experience indicated above, Mr. Ford asserts that the automobile in the form of a motor tractor will, in the near future, cut a greater figure in farm work— plowing, seeding, cultivating, reaping, threshing and finally marketing the produce—than it does today as a pleasure vehicle in the cities.

The only thing that remains to bring to a realization this prophecy, is a broader interpretation of the free alcohol bill on the part of those into whose hands the regulation of denaturing alcohol rests.

It is within the power of any farmer today to make his own alcohol at a cost of six to eight cents per gallon but the regulations for denaturing it are so stringent and are so bound round with red tape that it brings the cost up to thirty-five or forty cents a gallon— a prohibitive figure.

It is Mr. Ford's earnest hope that a more rational interpretation of the bill will be made in the near future, and from that moment he believes will date the emancipation of the farmer from much of the drudgery which is now associated with his life, and the automobile, in forms best suited to the use of the ruralite, will become quite as familiar a figure on country roads as jaded dobbin is today.— Ford Motor Co."


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Davis-SE Georgia on Saturday, July 20, 2013 - 07:48 am:

The 1916 quote about 15% more power from an 'ordinary Ford car' is interesting. That was not my experience on E-85. I don't recall the difference now, but my performance was less on E-85 than on gasoline. Perhaps this is a testament to the quality of the gasoline of the day?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Rob Heyen - Nebraska on Saturday, July 20, 2013 - 08:05 am:

From "The American Machinist", June 1906:


"Henry Ford, the Detroit automobile manufacturer, is evidently determined to be "in it" when the denatured alcohol bill is passed. He has for some time had his experimental force conducting exhaustive experiments to determine the best type of carbureter or mixing valve for vaporizing alcohol for internal combustion motors, with, it is stated, very satisfactory results. They have been able to get 60 horse-power in several tests on a six-cylinder motor, which showed only 52 horsepower when using gasolene. Instead of using a Prony brake, the power is determined electrically, a dynamo being directly connected to the shaft of the engine."


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve in Tennessee on Saturday, July 20, 2013 - 10:48 am:

send it to me so I can age it in a small barrel for a few years first. I will let you know how the test works out.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nathan Bright on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 12:19 pm:

i know that gas tank sealer made in past years before the introduction of ethanol in our gas does not stand up to ethanol/methanol. So if you do this you should consider bypassing your tank and filling up the bowl on the carb manually/not via the tank. Also, shellacked carb floats do not stand up to ethanol. i dont think one running of this stuff would do it in but i would suggest taking a wire brush and taking off as much schallac as you can. then dip the float 3x in modern gas tank sealer giving it 3 light and even coats. i am of the persuasion that thinks henry did make his model t to be able to run on methanol. Someone brought up the topic of low compression. keep in mind early cars had higher compression when access to fuel may had been less available and hence a need to run on moonshine. Just my thoughts. I like thinking my T was the first "flex-fuel" engine haha!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Henry Petrino in Modesto, CA on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 12:51 pm:

A few days ago I was watching a movie on TV. It was set in the '20s and was about a couple of brothers who got into the moonshine business (sorry, I don't remember the name of it). At one point they were hauling a load of 'shine in a TT. They ran out of gas, so one of the brothers took a jar or two of the cargo out and poured it into the gas tank. The other brother, who was driving, started it right up and off they went.

That proves a T can run on almost anything! :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 01:07 pm:

The early T has 4.2:1 CR, hardly the CR you would want for alky. I believe about 12:1 is needed to get good efficiency out of alky. You cannot optimize for one fuel, and get good results with the other.

Gasoline has improved over the years, as it is refined out of a barrel with a wide variety of components.

There is ethanol, and its cousin, highly corrosive methanol. I have not heard of any modifiers that will improve their efficiency.

Henry visualized the farmer producing his own fuel, but I doubt he ever thought it would compete with gasoline in road vehicles.

Unlike kerosene fueled steam, and electric, ethanol was never a serious contender as the preferred fuel for road vehicles in the first ten years of the horseless carriage.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By William L Vanderburg on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 01:10 pm:

That movie was called "Lawless" and I've heard similar tales first hand how T's ran out of gas and the only combustible material was 'shine. Just poured it in and away they went.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Rob Heyen - Nebraska on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 04:00 pm:

This news account appeared in June, 1906 in a New York newspaper. In the story, Henry Ford promotes alcohol fuel and talks about his desire to build a farm tractor. I've seen another article (can't find it now) where HF says every farm can provide it's own fuel and eliminate big oil company's controlling the price of fuel. (sound familiar?)



Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nathan Bright on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 05:36 pm:

Henry Ford owned industrial hemp farms for ethanol production.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kenneth W DeLong on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 05:52 pm:

I have seen the Soybean procesing plant and it was very extensive! Not shure of the hemp part but if you read it on the internet or see it on tv it must be true? Bud.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 06:36 pm:

When you get a chance to visit the OCF, Nathan, you will learn that somebody took the soybean display at Greenfield Village and changed it to hemp and posted it on the internet. More BS. We've had long threads on this in the last 3 years, which you can find in the search, including my pix of the soybean experiments at Greenfield Village.

I have nothing against hemp, or Pot itself, Nathan, but in favor of the truth about history, and not that the T was designed to run on ethanol, etc.

I was called all kinds of names on an economics forum several years ago for dispelling these myths.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 06:41 pm:

How did the demo go, Cameron? Considering the false history on this topic, I would rather you had used any other car than a T. A 1964 T-bird with a carb and its 10.1:1 compression ratio would do better.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kenneth W DeLong on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 06:47 pm:

RD,I can't rember the name of the town but the soybean plant was far from the Henry Ford.A few years ago there was a tour in the country by Yepsi and other places all about the Ford Industries involvement locally.Jerry Van would be a much better source than me.Bud.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nathan Bright on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 06:48 pm:

hmm. I dont have anything to really back this up but the plants i saw in the picture regarding a hemp farm was way taller than soybeans. each plant was at least 15ft tall. I will investigate. Until i return with proof please disregard my previous post haha.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 07:04 pm:

I would like to see some *proof*, Nathan. If Henry had indeed experimented with hemp, you can bet the govt would have prevented Greenfield Village from showing its benefits.



Ford made buzz coil cases Ford with soy for awhile.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Royce in Dallas TX on Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 08:49 pm:

I've read a LOT of Ford history and never seen any reference to Henry growing hemp. Henry's unsuccessful experiments in trying to power tractors with alcohol used corn to make the ethanol.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hal Davis-SE Georgia on Monday, July 22, 2013 - 07:39 am:

Perhaps hemp was an experiment to expand his artistic innovation.:-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Thomas Mullin on Monday, July 22, 2013 - 09:30 am:

Without checking any notes, I recall Henry and Edsal used the entire corn plant in producing alcohol. Why waste the husks and stalks. No wonder modern ethanol costs so much.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Monday, July 22, 2013 - 11:07 am:

Hey, corn farmers! Please tell us your perspective about whether ethanol would have been competitive with gasoline in the early 20th Century, had the politics not been against it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nathan Bright on Monday, July 22, 2013 - 11:20 am:

Ricks,

I figure that the reasons for why it wouldnt work in yesteryear is the same reason why it doesnt work today. Ethanol produced by corn competes directly with the food supply. If Corn/ethanol had been our number one fuel supply in the 20's I imagine the great depression would have been much harder than it was. Also keep in mind that by todays standards, Gas was cheap! While a select few did control the supply here in the US we didnt have a foreign cartel really squeezing us. Also, I have seen research by the CAO showing it took the 4 gallons of diesel to harvest enough corn to make 4 gallons of ethanol. (I have seen these numbers change study-to-study in regards to whom is doing the study but this is the moderate answer and likely biased as well due simply as this was done during the democratic hold on the US House) This essentially counts the farmers time and effort at zero. The only reason that ethanol is profitable today is due to government subsidies. I imagine the reason it wasnt profitable back in the day was there were not any govt subsidies.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Monday, July 22, 2013 - 12:41 pm:

Don't forget, fellas, the subsidized push for ethanol started under Bu$h, at least partly to distract from the fact that the Iraq war disrupted world oil supplies and caused the rise from $28/bbl at end of 2000 to a peak of $147/bbl in 2008.

Just saw on Bloomberg that Iraq shipped 70 million bbl last month. Guess which govt has the contracts?

from wiki:


Brent barrel petroleum spot prices since May 1987.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nathan Bright on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 08:47 am:

.... i never blamed Obama for the ethanol push. However, Do keep in mind that Obama was the one that increased the ethanol fuel mandate requiring more ethanol in our fuel. Obama is also responsible for earmarking funds to other alternative energy, primarily solar, that would be unprofitable w/o government subsidies. Although it is equally his fault for not putting an end to it. We are paying farmers more than what their crops are worth. Its a destructive cycle.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Rob Heyen - Nebraska on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 09:22 am:

Ethanol efficiency (or lack of) studies and results are as numerous as opinions about Henry Ford, Edsel, etc. etc.

Some of the points often lost in the discussion about ethanol efficiency:
1. Corn used for ethanol is not food. At least, not human food for the most part (exclusions include your corn flakes). Most field corn is used for livestock feed. Many of those arguing against ethanol production from corn also argue against commercial livestock feeding (feedlots), go figure.

2. The byproduct from corn ethanol production, distillers grain, is used for livestock feed, and is an excellent feed source. Many anti ethanol researchers conveniently "forget" to count the use of distillers grain, a major byproduct of corn ethanol production.

Of course, the ethanol discussion often does not take into account environmental and economic factors, such as, without ethanol productions, would fuel prices be higher than the numbers currently used?

Regardless of your opinion, the link below offers many studies, and it is always good to look at different views before drawing conclusions.

my two cents,

Rob
Nebraska Corn Farmer :-)


http://journeytoforever.org/ethanol_energy.html


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 09:55 am:

OK, Nathan, look at US oil production. We are now the world's 3rd largest, largely under Obama. See wiki.

The US govt funded Solyndra with a couple of $Billion with a new technique for making better solar panels. After that, the ChiComs funded their solar panel production with $30 Billion, and the price has fallen by 80%. That has put the Germans out of the solar panel business, too.

Rob, what is distiller's grain used for?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kenneth W DeLong on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 09:59 am:

Nathan,Now is the time for [You] to start buying land,or renting for the 2014 corn crop.Factor in the cost agnst the high price of corn but don't forget the Vast sum's of money from the taxpayer!PS don't try to double crop by adding hemp.Bud


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Rob Heyen - Nebraska on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 04:53 pm:

Ralph,

Livestock feed, same as corn. Only a portion of the corn kernel is used in the ethanol production process, most is still available as feed (same as before ethanol production).

Rob


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nathan Bright on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 05:00 pm:

However, due to the increased demand on this corn, the price has gone up. Hence increasing the price it takes to feed the cattle. The corn, by far, makes better feed than the stalks. Beef producers have to get those nutrients from somewhere. I think i will lead to more artificial ingredients in our meat.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Rob Heyen - Nebraska on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 06:32 pm:

Nathan,

About one third of corn remains and is used for feed after ethanol production. Furthermore, the price a consumer pays at the store for beef (as with most agriculture based food) is only based minimally on the cost of the underlying commodity.

In other words, the price you pay at the supermarket for food includes the cost of the commodity, but is affected dramatically by transportation, packaging and the distribution network to be placed on your store shelf.

This paper estimates that the price of the commodity (beef, corn, etc) only affects the retail cost by a small percentage.

http://www.ethanolacrossamerica.net/pdfs/FoodFeedandFuel08.pdf

I'm not defending ethanol production or mandates, just pointing out the fact there are many factors involved.

Rob


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nathan Bright on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 08:36 pm:

Im open to new ideas, particularly good ones, but i dont feel ethanol is one of those. Rob- consider that the paper you cite was produced by a pro-ethanol group. Also, my main argument for ethanol is that it is unsustainable w/o government intervention. To me, that is the govt picking winners and losers. The secondary arguement is certainly up for debate. Consider also that while Americans can afford the small increase on meat products those in other nations cant. The US is still one of the largest producers of grain but many farmers have switched to growing the corn due to increased, and artificial, demand thanks to the govt. This lack of grain could produce regional instability for regions that lean on the US for grain. (should we give foreign aid? thats another conversation however sometimes its cheaper to give aid then roll in the military when we/our leaders feel a nation has spiraled out of control)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Rob Heyen - Nebraska on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 09:50 pm:

Nathan,

One problem I have with any research and subsequent articles is, was the information biased? It's almost impossible to know. I do know the marketplace usually sorts things out (even with government intervention). Anyway, I really don't have a definitive study to rely on, nor an opinion "fixed in stone".

Always good to have an open discussion. I have found it quite interesting that HF was a proponent of ethanol. He claimed results that were better than gasoline, however I've also learned that the early automotive industry leaders seemed to gravitate to "embellishment" in the media.

Rob


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bill Everett on Wednesday, July 24, 2013 - 12:14 pm:

I want to weigh in here, but also state, up front, that I am somewhat biased because our customers are fertilizer dealers and aerial applicators, all of whom depend on farmers for their livelihood; consequently, I depend on fertilizer dealers and aerial applicators for mine.

With that said, I also want to point out that there are three, and only three, ways to create wealth.

1. Manufacturing
2. Mining
3. Farming

There's no fourth way to create wealth.

Ethanol is made from a renewable resource, grown by farmers here in the U.S., contributing not only to wealth creation, but also to our reduction of dependency on imported oil.

The use of ethanol increases our fuel supply by 10%. I'll allow that it's ALMOST 10% due to ethanol's not having the same amount of energy (btu's) as gasoline.

Farming consumes about 25% (I'm open to correction here) of all manufactured goods. Go to a farm sometime and see the equipment there. See the capital that's invested in it. See the maintenance required to keep it operating. See the fickle weather that can destroy a crop. See the regulations that farms are required to operate by. See the prices farms pay for crop insurance, now required by most farm lenders.

New paragraph here to make a point! Look up the financial devastation that occurs when commodity prices slide. Look up the bankruptcies and resulting auctions in the past. See the one of very few places in the world marketplace where there are lots of sellers, but only a few buyers. See the loss of political influence that farming has endured due to so few people working directly on farms.

Farming, one of only three ways to create wealth, is a seriously capital intensive business that for decades has operated at a virtually break-even point. No farm product, be it livestock, poultry, broadcast crops, row crops (or even marijuana in Colorado!) is immune from the fickleness of weather, worldwide economic shifts, or politicians' whims.

Yes, ethanol in gasoline gripes some of our customers who use single cylinder air-cooled gasoline engines to power their pumps. I hear that gaskets and o-rings require replacement more often. Yet, every one of these guys is thankful that they have to do these chores because it means that their customers, FARMERS, are better off financially because of ethanol.

We are all connected financially. When one group of us suffers, we all suffer eventually. Exporting our capital out of the country for raw material such as oil or finished goods sold at WalMart is the same; our standard of living declines.

I know there's nothing currently like the carbon atom that has the energy stored in it. Until wind, solar, etc., becomes more efficient, it makes good sense (o.k., at least to me!) to use ethanol.

Those of you who know a fertilizer dealer and/or an aerial applicator (cropduster), just ask if they feel that using ethanol in fuel is good; I believe you'll see a smile and hear a "Oh, yes!"


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Derek Kiefer - Mantorville, MN on Wednesday, July 24, 2013 - 12:49 pm:

"just ask if they feel that using ethanol in fuel is good; I believe you'll see a smile and hear a "Oh, yes!""

Ask a welfare recipient if he thinks government handouts are good for the nation, and he'll probably say "Oh, yes!" with a smile too.

As with any government boondoggle, you have to follow the money... farmers themselves don't have enough lobbying power to push ethanol, but Monsanto, Cargill, and ADM sure do.

IMHO, farmers are being set up to fail. The high price of corn has created massive inflation in input costs of farming. Land prices have skyrocketed, seed prices, chemical prices, equipment prices, etc. Tax code discourages them from saving their profits, so it's mostly reinvested at inflated prices back into the farm. It's a perfect storm brewing for the banks and large multinational corporations to get land out of the hands of private landowners, and make more people dependent on those who want to control everything.

Farming is one of the last remaining vestiges of true Liberty. They've set up the dependency on government, and will pull the rug out when the time is right.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Wednesday, July 24, 2013 - 02:04 pm:

Baldenar Velasquez, 65, grew up in a migrant farmworker family, following the crops up the west coast. In fact, in my high school summer jobs, I may have rousted some of the pears his family picked and packed in Medford. Migrant farmworkers have to live in as bad conditions as any third world population, and in spite of that, Baldenar managed to get an education and became a migrant farmworkers' advocate.

Baldenar was interviewed by Bill Moyers recently. He said the likes of RJReynolds and the $460 Billion Walmart deal directly with the family farmers and beat them into marginal prices. The farmers have no choice but to pass a share of their struggle onto the farmworkers.

That's how MaoMart sells at lower prices than Kroger, et al. MaoMart beats it out of the family farmers and farmworkers.

And that's why one of the big grocery chains in the east has been weakened by MaoMart, and is about to be bought up by the ChiComs. I would be scared shiftless if my only choice of food was controlled by the ChiComs.


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