DIRTY DIESEL - OR IS IT?
There was a time when car buyers turned their noses up at diesel engines. They were hard to start, left clouds of black smoke behind and lacked acceleration. But times have changed. With government encouragement, diesel engines and diesel oil have literally cleaned up their act.
Today diesel engines are cleaner, quieter and give you more miles to the gallon. They generate great power and their power ratio to fuel consumption is good. Despite the fact that it is only a little cheaper, diesel engines do travel greater distances on less fuel.
In the so called 'Shell Eco Marathon', to find the vehicle with the lowest fuel consumption at given speeds, A HATZ 1B20 engine achieved 1806 kilometres on one litre of diesel - a "World Record." This would equate to travelling 5,100 miles on a gallon of diesel! A petrol engine running all day takes at least 2 to 3 tank fulls. An equivalent diesel would run on one tankful only.
These engines are providing exciting possibilities in terms of economy. At the recent Saltex exhibition in Windsor, a Hatz 1B20 fitted to a Turf Cutter caused enormous interest. And while the Honda and Briggs and Stratton petrol engines predominate this field, diesel is holding its own on construction equipment like AMMANN AVP 2920- the Benford Vibrator Plates and Wacker equipment as well.
The principle downside of Diesel is of course 'price'. According to many operators, however, this is more than compensated for with the savings in fuel. Diesel is also a lot safer to store.
The Hatz 'B' series engines fall easily into the standards set by the E.P.A. burning clean diesel and suppressing gases.
Another development in fuel is the R.M.E., a chemically modified rapeseed oil with similar physical properties to conventional Diesel oil. Its advantages include the fact that it is largely neutral in terms of CO emissions; more easily biologically de-gradable; largely free from sulphur and phosphorus; is less toxic in water and also has a higher flash point.
RME is a highly suitable fuel for diesel engines, which operate in environmentally sensitive areas i.e., boats, barges etc. This fuel, which should be more available in the U.K., is called Bio Diesel and most modern diesel engines are made from materials, which permits its use. It is true, however, that some conversion may be required.
Back on the general subject of use of diesel fuel as opposed to petrol, YANMAand ROBIN are well established but the larger part of the market is well covered by PERKINS, KUBOTA, VOLVO, LOMBARDINI, KHD DEUTZ, LISTER, and PETTER Etc.
A prominent group handling a number of well-known names including the HATZ range is Bryco of Daventry
Today with price, running costs and efficiency at every higher premiums, most operators look for less maintenance on their power sources, cheaper running costs, ease of starting and with less water cooling because of the dangers of frost etc
As the trade demands higher and higher specifications and the meeting of C.E. Standards and with an ever-increasing choice.
The manufacturers had better be listening carefully.