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Borsuk said :-
Ren.
Can you confirm Sharon is back in the UK. You haven't left here here in Spain by any chance.
Got back home on Thursday and it has rained every day just about.
21/11/2018 09:03:52 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
Ahhh, that explains a lot. You see Sharon has been thinking and talking about Spain a lot so maybe she no longer actually needs to be physically in a place to bring the rain. Maybe her just thinking about a place is enough to cause a deluge.

If I encourage her to think about California maybe she can stop the wildfires they've been enduring recently. Hmmmmm...
21/11/2018 16:53:36 UTC
NigelS said :-
As I bought Benny (see Bike Reviews (Benelli TnT125) specifically as my winter ride and to save the floor on my Vespa GTV250 which is prone to rotting badly when exposed to salt, wet roads etc, I thought I'd better put the scoot away for the duration (and it'll save on tax and ins). For those new to PTWs (DVLA speak for 'Powered Two Wheelers' or bikes to the rest of us) there are a couple of tips here you might find useful. Firstly put a few litres of Esso Supreme into a fairly empty tank and run it at least 30 miles so that it draws through the carb/fuel injection system. I'll come back to this later. Secondly, clean the bike well, removing any mud/road filth from chrome/wheels/discs and dry it well, and lastly disconnect or remove the battery which should be bench charged once a month and the electrolyte level checked. Back to the petrol bit. All 91RON petrol in the UK is EO10 (10% bioethanol) almost all >95RON petrol is EO5 but Esso Supreme 97RON is the only petrol in the UK which is completely bioethanol free . . . unless you live in the SW (Devon, Cornwall, some of Somerset) which is served by the Fawley refinery, or the North East (Northumberland, North Yorkshire) which is served by the Middlesborough refinery because I'm afraid Esso do put EO5 or 5% bioethanol in the output of these two refineries. Every other area in the UK is free from bioethanol in Esso Supreme. The importance of this is that bioethanol a truly horrid substance, it is hygroscopic (takes up water from the atmosphere) which turns to an acid and attacks plastics and metals and which after 10 weeks sitting in your tank has degraded to such an extent that it will block small orifices (no, not them your dirty boy, the jets and other little 'oles in the carb body), it will rust any metal parts, it attacks brass and plastic (fuel lines etc). It also can coagulate into a green jelly substance that has the look and constituency of what would come out of a Gorilla's nose when he's got a bad cold and it is impossible to clean out of fuel lines and get the bike going again in the Spring. Hope someone finds that of use . . . . . More tips next week. Oh, just a quick one before I go - don't slam the car door on a grandchild's hand when collecting them from school, they squeal like hell and the other parents stare at you as though you did it on purpose.
22/11/2018 16:56:10 UTC
Upt'North said :-
Interesting and well written Nigel. Mine was Esso from Coldstream, Scottish Borders, haven't got a clue which depot that would come from. I naively thought all super unleaded was bio free, think I read it somewhere. Probably on a forum, they can't be trusted!
But I do supplement with Honda Pro Fuel Stabiliser for the winter, which I have now done. As an aside my ST runs much smoother after a couple of tanks of Super Unleaded, don't think it will be the Octane as much as the cleaning properties. Damn expensive though.
Thanks again.
Upt'North.
23/11/2018 10:25:51 UTC
Snod said :-
Where can I find 91RON in the UK? Is it cheaper than 95RON?
23/11/2018 19:51:40 UTC
Borsuk said :-
Don't think anyone sells 91 RON in the UK any more.
23/11/2018 20:05:12 UTC
NigelS said :-
Snod, Borsuk you're right of course, I wrote the article for Mortons a few years ago before all Regular was standardised at 95RON and just did a 'cut 'n paste' but I did check recently with Esso to see if it was still the case that Supreme is E0 and this was confirmed. I'm afraid Op'tNorth the Borders Region is supplied from Middlesbrough. You can check wherever you fill up what the bioethanol content is because the supplier is required by law to have the information either at the pump or in the kiosk where customers can view it.
24/11/2018 08:38:49 UTC
Ren - The Ed said :-
I don't stash my bikes for the winter but this is good information. Now correct me if I am wrong - but. Would it not make sense to drain down the fuel completely? This would avoid the gorilla snot issue. Correspondingly of course an empty tank through a cold and damp british winter will rust on the inside.

Would it make sense to put some regular 10w40 in the tank and swill it around? Ideally the tank would come inside but I'd CAUTION strongly against this. No tank is ever totally empty and having highly flammable substances loitering around in the airing cupboard is a recipe for disaster.
24/11/2018 10:49:23 UTC
Upt'North said :-
You are right Ed, the tank should be full and the best least bio ethanol used for the fill. I have used Big Red's Pro Fuel Stabiliser in Lawnmowers, brush cutters, hedge trimmers and even motorbikes for some years now and in the spring they all start, obviously now I've said that they'll all refuse to start this year and be full of gorilla detritus.
Upt'North.
24/11/2018 13:24:14 UTC
Ian Soady said :-
I've never encountered this ethanol problem people keep going on about. I currently have an experiment in the garage - a half full jam jar of bog-standard 95 octane petrol with a selection of Amal jets, adjusting screws, a throttle slide etc sitting in it.

After about 2 months they look exactly as they did when I put them in.......
24/11/2018 16:52:21 UTC
Rod said :-
Ian,
I have encountered the green gunge on two occasions. The last was on my sons KTM which had not been used for about one year. The green gunge was all around the float chamber, and had blocked the slow running jet.
Have you left the top off of the jam jar to allow evaporation?
24/11/2018 17:19:25 UTC
NigelS said :-
I first found Gorilla snot in an MZ TS125 which I restored a few years ago and I had to completely strip the carb and (look away now) poke bits of wire up the main jet. The tank was a right off as it had rusted inside so badly because the student who owned it couldn't afford to run it and it had stood for two years half full without being started once. The other piece of kit I've owned which succumbed to Gorilla snot was a Kipor generator which had stood for less than 4 months. I tried cleaning the carb, new fuel lines, removed and flushed the tank but nothing. In the end I took it to the local lawn mower mech and he had a go at no little expenseI might add and although I ran it was as rough as buggery and wouldn't power a reading lamp let alone a whole caravan so I'm afraid it got recycled - viz. the skip at the end of the row labelled 'scarp metal'. Henceforth I have run all garden appliances, my PTWs and in fact everything petrol on Esso Supreme and the World has run smoothly round the Sun ever since.
24/11/2018 17:48:53 UTC
Ian Soady said :-
"Have you left the top off of the jam jar to allow evaporation? "

I didn't fancy an open jar of petrol in the garage while I'm waving blowlamps etc around - but I do take the point. It is only half filled so there's as much air as petrol in there. Maybe I should put a pinhole in the lid to mimic the breather hole in a petrol tank cap?

I've been hearing scare stories about petrol for decades. Remember "Unleaded fuel will wreck your engine"? Well it didn't. I wasted quite a lot of money having the valve seats in my Commando changed even though the originals would have been fine.

Those with long memories (perhaps I'm the only one here although I struggle to remember what I did yesterday) may remember Cleveland Discol which was very popular in the 1950s / 60s, especially in the North East of England. It contained up to 20% ethanol and I'm not aware of any problems caused by it. Of course we didn't have the internet to spread fear and despondency.......

A considered view below.

www.joc.org.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=20&t=16931 ...
25/11/2018 10:52:10 UTC
NigelS said :-
I remember Cleveland Discol which was taken over by Esso in the 60's (??) I think and also another one from that era, National Benzole (Mr Mercury on the sign). In fact ethyl alcohol (ethanol) has been used in engines from the earliest times. In 1927 Henry Ford developed an engine to run on 100% ethanol because he was fed up with the Texan oil producers' cartel and their control of petrol prices . . . what goes round, comes round! I think you have a point Ian about 'scaremongering' but it should also be remembered that in the 50's and 60's engines were a lot more basic, mostly with cast iron pistons and Octel fuels which aided valve lube etc. There are also a lot of other chemicals which go into modern fuels which were never there 50 years ago. I have noticed that the smell of petrol has changed significantly over the years (and no, I'm not a 'sniffer' but if I spill it in the garage the fumes come up into the airing cupboard mysteriously!).
25/11/2018 11:43:54 UTC
Upt'North said :-
What harm could there be in a little fuel additive?

1) Water accumulation in the fuel tank - ethanol absorbs water from the air. The water condenses in the fuel tank and will pull the ethanol out of suspension with the petrol. This is bad news because it strips the octane out of the petrol, leaving you with a layer of octane-poor fuel on top and a water-ethanol layer mixture on the bottom. If this gets sucked into the combustion chamber, you will have poor starting and very rough running with potentially engine damage.

2) Deposit is like to build up - Ethanol when mixed with water readily forms Gums in the fuel system much quicker than fuel without Ethanol. These Gums coat fuel system components including filters, carburettors, injectors, throttle plates and will then form varnish and carbon deposits in the intake, on valves, and in the combustion chamber.

3) Lower fuel mileage, Decreased performance and acceleration. Ethanol contains less chemical energy than petrol does, and this means less mileage for the driver. 3-5% drops in mileage are expected.

4) Corrosion of internal engine components - Water contamination may cause fuel system corrosion and severe deterioration.

5) Contaminants in fuel system – water, degraded rubber, plastic, fibreglass and rust may get drawn in.

6) It could encourage microbial growth in fuel. Ethanol being organic and hygroscopic may allow the growth of fungus.

7) Short shelf life - as short as 90 days

8) Corrodes plastic and rubber - Ethanol is a strong, aggressive solvent and will cause problems with rubber hoses, o-rings, seals, and gaskets. These problems are worse during extended storage when significant deterioration could take place. Hoses may delaminate, o-rings soften and break down, and fuel system components made from certain types of plastics could either soften or become hard and brittle, eventually failing. Fuel system components made from brass, copper, and aluminium may oxidize. The dissolved plastics and resins now in the fuel could end up in blocked fuel filters or gummy deposits.

9) Melts Fibreglass - bikes and boats with fibreglass fuel tanks can have structural failure as the Ethanol will break down and pick-up some of the materials the tanks are made from. Again this material, dissolved from the tank, can be carried through the fuel system and can cause damage to carburettors, fuel injectors and can actually get into the combustion chambers.

Although I'll still sleep tonight and hopefully the sun will come up in the morning.
Upt'North.


25/11/2018 13:37:02 UTC
Ian Soady said :-
Hi Nigel.

Actually, by the 50s and 60s virtually all engines had alloy pistons - even my 1932 Sunbeam had one... And it's often people with "classics" who are complaining the most loudly about ethanol. But many of these are stuck in the 1960s anyway and resent anything that disturbs their rosy view of the past.

I do agree that possibly it's other additives that give people problems with fuel lines dissolving etc.

Up t'North: some of your points are valid. However, I have not (ever) had any fuel related problems whether due to unleaded, ethanol or mysterious additives. I can happily leave a bike with a half full petrol tank for 6 months and it will start first kick. But maybe I'm just lucky.

I will report on my jam jar in due course.....
25/11/2018 14:10:32 UTC
Upt'North said :-
Wished I was lucky? Maybe I am?
Jam jar blog. Classic.
Upt'North.
25/11/2018 16:24:16 UTC
Borsuk said :-
By the time I'm next in the UK my 125 will have been standing for about 5 months with a half tank of petrol in all weathers. I'll drain a pint out of the bottom of the tank before I start her and see if there is any water layer in the fuel. Unfortunately I don't have any water finding paste at home so I can't just dip the tank to see. I have a 5 liter can that's been sitting here for about 6 months now, might see if I can get a sample of that from the bottom.
25/11/2018 18:17:52 UTC
NigelS said :-
Police pursuit rules were changed back in the summer and the Met are reporting a fall of 40% in moped theft. Despite the urban myth, it never was against the rules to chase a little shit on a stolen moped/scooter if he/she/it wasn't wearing a helmet but what has changed is that the pursuing police officer can now knock them off the bike. I think we should all write to our local PCC and ask that the following phrase should be added to the latest advice to the Police "and the officer, having knocked the scumbag off the stolen bike, should stop his/her vehicle, select reverse, and run the bugger over, taking great care not to add further damage to the bike lying on the road"
26/11/2018 17:57:27 UTC
Upt'North said :-
Nigel,
I think any additional addendum would have to include no damage should be inflicted on the police vehicle. They cost money you know. Our money!
Upt'North.
27/11/2018 08:37:52 UTC
 

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