Simple Biodiesel - A first Experiment

A video of myself producing biodiesel for the first time.

No doubt there will many criticisms, people saying I should have done this, that, or the other, but I dont care - what I did worked well, and actually it was quite a good grade of biodiesel. Beginners luck perhaps? Or maybe I just had some good advice.

I'm sure I will be criticised for not having narrated this, mostly by people that have never narrated anything, at least nothing worthwhile.

So, here are the steps as shown in the video - not that anybody ever bothers to read the video description.

(1) 0:00 to 01:35 Filter whatever used vegetable oil you have - I filtered down to 10microns. In future I would only use bedsheets or old denim to filter the oil.

(2) 01:35 to 02:22 Heat 1Litre of oil to above 100°C to drive off any water.

(3) 01:35 to 03:30 While the oil is cooling, mix up some methoxide. I used 7g of potassium hydroxide in 250mls of methanol.

(4) 03:30 to 05:35 When the oil has cooled to 55°C, ad the methoxide, and agitate gently. Allow time for the process of transesterification to complete. I wrapped the mixture in insulation to keep the temperature up for as long as possible, but left it alone for 48hours.

(5) 05:35 to 06:35 Once the transesterification process is complete, drain off the sediment or carefully pour off the biodiesel.

(6) 06:45 to 10:00 Wash the diesel. Add hot water to the diesel and agitate it gently, then drain off the water. I repeated this process five times, but I only show two (because it gets rather boring). The first wash was full of particles, but the third, fourth, and fifth washes were crystal clear.

(7) 10:05 to 11:25 Heat the diesel to dry it, you will need to stir it continuously during this process. I took my diesel up to 130°C.

(8) Burn your diesel using the method of your choosing.

Be aware this can be a dangerous process. It is up to you to make yourself aware of the dangers.
Be the first to comment