Last post on Nov 19, 2012 at 7:45 AM
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Car Safety, Exterior, Fuel System, Performance Mods, Auto Body, Engine, Fuel System, Oil, Paint, Transmission, Alternative Fuels, Diesel, Hybrid Cars, Fuel Efficiency (MPG), Car Warranties, Coupe, Convertible, Hatchback, Truck, Sedan, Wagon, SUV, Van
#78 of 117 Re: Blue Sky part 2 [dialm4speed]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
May 22, 2005 (12:06 pm)
Well you go to the same pump so that your car sits on the same ground at the same level. Also you are using the exact same calibration.
20 more miles on a tank won't prove anything---the wind could cause that on any given day. Unless you record gas mileage over many fill ups there is really no evidence here.
Jun 06, 2005 (4:07 am)
What I know about diesel engines you can write on the back of a cigarette packet, however I'm a business man who has told about a potential opportunity involving a new invention. I wonder if I could trouble anyone who would care to reply for their advice concerning the following questions. All answers gratefully received.
Here is some basic background information
2 engineers one an electronics expert and the other a petrol chemical engineer claims to have developed a product which when fitted to any haulage truck will guarantee a minimum of 20% diesel fuel consumption as well as reduced emissions.
So far they claim to have it installed on 100 trucks which have provided them with the data that supports their claims.
They are now seeking to market the product commercially and have appointed a small marketing company which knows nothing about diesel engines. the cost of the product is anticipated to be in the order of $20,000.
They went to a major truck manufacturer who they claim was very interested in the product but required a two year validation period. They were not prepared to wait and are now considering road hauliers.
I need to know the following
1. If their claims are true would 20% decrease in fuel consumption be of major interest to road hauliers with a $20,000 price tag?
2. What technical questions should I ask them to validate their claims ?
3. I am considering entering into a franchise or direct sales agreement with them but I need to make sure that I'm not being sold down the river and given the price that there is a market for their product.
Thanks in advance for your replies
#80 of 117 Re: Need Advice [epicentre]
Jun 06, 2005 (4:47 am)
Based upon your information, it sounds suspicious to me and I would probably not invest. However, here are the questions that I would have:
1. What is the mechanism for which fuel economy increases? If it is a simple computer chip swap, the markup would be about 20-fold (personal trucks sell chip setups for $1-2K) and the results are typically haphazard. If it is an actual device, tell them you will need to see the schematic and US patent #.
2. How long is the product guaranteed and who will honor the guarantee after 3 years (i.e. are the owners moving to the Virgin Islands at the end of year 1)? A semi truck probably gets about 5 mpg with a 20 % gain resulting in 6 mpg. To pay off an initial investment of 20 K, a minimum of about 250,000 miles would have to be driven with gas in the $2.50 / gallon range. Is the device transferable to another engine? What is the expected life of the device? Thus, there is the potential for money savings, however, the 20 % gain must be guaranteed for at least 250,000 miles and preferably indefinitely with no additional maintenance costs. Remember that a diesel engine can last about 300,000 to 500,000 miles if taken care of, significantly longer than a gas engine,
3. What is the cost of the part? The 100 vehicles that have been fitted would have cost possibly over $1,000,000 already and $2,000,000 if they are selling at cost. How long have the vehicles been tested (surely over 250,000 miles if they expect to get $20 K) and who paid for the testing?
4. The description about two engineers also makes me leary. The "electronics expert" makes me think this is a computer chip based device, which makes $20 K absurdly expensive. I am not aware of any chemical engineers that know a hoot about diesel engines. Mechanical engineers would be responsible for designing machined parts to be fitted to an engine.
#81 of 117 Re: Need Advice [john500]
Jun 06, 2005 (5:09 am)
Very good response. I say it is Voodoo. Diesel engines as a whole are very efficient. I would want to see the device installed & patent before even thinking about putting out a dollar of my money. If it is for real they could buy trucks install the device and undercut the competition on cross country hauling. It is a tough business and 20% drop in fuel cost would assure them big profits. Be wary!
Jun 06, 2005 (6:44 am)
Personally I have never seen any device plugged into or poured into any vehicle at any time that resulted in a reliable and consistent 20% increase in fuel mileage. Such a substantial increase would, IMO, require significant mechanical modification.
However, let's presume that there IS this chip and that it DOES give a 20% increase.
Now the question I would ask as a fleet manager is WHAT does this chip do to get that mileage? Am I leaning out this engine dangerously? Am I screwing around with something that shouldn't be screwed around with?
From my experience, reliability is a far more significant factor with fleets than a couple MPG. They can usually pass the fuel costs on to the consumer (and they do, which is why your apples cost more than two years ago), but if the apples don't ever get there, they "eat" them so to speak.
So I agree whoeheartedly with the others---if the inventors will not fully disclose to you the engineering principles behind this device, I wouldn't touch it. And the price is VERY suspicious. It sounds like a grab and run scheme based on that alone. A fleet could fit all kinds of aero devices, better lubricants and filters and higher maintenance to get better MPG, for less money per truck than that.
Jun 06, 2005 (6:48 am)
Every few years someone comes out with one of these "inventions" and it's usually timed with gas price increases.
Voodoo...pure and simple!
#84 of 117 Ref Need Advice......Thank You
Jun 06, 2005 (12:50 pm)
Many thanks to all of you who responded to my request for advice concerning this new invention. Your replies were excellent and gave me plenty to think about. I've since spoken to the marketing company and they have been able to give me more information which I would be grateful if you could let me have your further opinions on.
1. The device uses a combination of LPG (Liquid Pressurised Gas) with diesel, I know this is nothing new, however they claim the electronics optimises the firing cycle in combination with LPG.
2. They claim they have run tests with a single truck over 150k miles and the resulting diesel consumption was reduced by 37% therefore they guarantee a minimum of 20%
3. As for the price of the unit, they do not intend to sell them, rather they insist on a monthly lease over three years and wish to retain ownership of the device after the lease period and charge only a peppercorn rent thereafter. Apparently the electronic control also contains some sort of satalite vehicle location tracking program which can be software upgraded.
4. Apparently Mercedes Benze Truck division have expressed an interest to license the product but require 2 years to evaluate it within their quality system which is too long for the inventor.
5. Apparently upon emission testing, the emissions where so low that they could hardly be detected. The testers thought the emission equipment was faulty but concluded this was not the case and the emissions were simply extremely low.
Does this sound more feesable or more worrying ?
Thanks one again in advance for your thoughts on this
#85 of 117 I still say hogwash...
Jun 06, 2005 (2:00 pm)
But I suppose I could be wrong...
#86 of 117 Re: Ref Need Advice......Thank You [epicentre]
Jun 06, 2005 (2:41 pm)
It may be legit. If so why not incorporate and sell stock over the counter? I have had several friends get into get rich quick schemes and none are rich. Most of the time it is just a scam someone put together. Some very elaborate. If they incorporate and sell stock they have laws to abide by that protect you the investor. That does not mean it is a sure thing. It is just a bit safer than owning a piece of paper that was printed on someone's deskjet.
One other thing. They said the diesel consumption was 37% less. What was the LPG consumption?
Jun 06, 2005 (4:03 pm)
yeah, how do you save fuel by using more fuel exactly?