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-   -   Homemade Octane Boosters (https://ls1tech.com/forums/advanced-engineering-tech/642102-homemade-octane-boosters.html)

Ferocity02 01-17-2007 12:58 AM

Homemade Octane Boosters
 
Not sure if you can consider this "advanved" or not, but perhaps we can get into the molecular properties and what not of these relavent chemicals. I know a lot of you guys use racing fuel that high in octane, like 96-120 in that range. In California, it's very difficult to get high octane fuel without driving long distances or paying insane prices for shipping. I have seen at some automotive stores "octane booster" that claims to boost your octane level anywhere from 5-20 points, where a point is a tenth of one octane.

It has come to my attention that octane boosters are mostly toluene, which is avaliable at your local Home Depot or paint shop. A little research on the internet brought up some chemicals that can be used as an alternative to off-the-shelf octane boosters. These chemicals include...

-Toluene(C6H8)

-Xylene-(C8H10)

-Methyl-tertiary-butyl-ether(MTBE)(C5H12O)




Of these three, Toluene seems to be the one best suited for the job as it's inexpensive. It's normally used to dissolve paint, rubber, and glues. It's flash point is also very low, at 4C, meaning you run it in a wide variety of temperatures. Xylene is very similar to toluene in it's uses, but it's flash point is high at 32C, meaning it may not combust as efficiently as toluene. It as also slightly more expensive. Both toluene and xylene can be bought in bulk locally. MTBE is an oxegenate, as you can see above, which is known to produce more power. It's is pretty much only found in gasoline and it very combustible, but it's more expensive than the previous two. Other options I read about are methanol, ethanol, or isopropyl alcohol.

Now, I've also read about adding transmissions fluid as a lubricating agent and "mineral spirits" as a cleaning agent, in small quantities of course. I don't see the point of adding mineral spirits, as toluene and xylene are forms of cleaning agents themselves.

As a side note, this will NOT be used in my car. I am thinking of running it in my YFZ450 which will have a big bore motor with an SCR in the 14-15:1 range.

What is everyone's thought on making homemade octane boosters? Do you think it's safe? Have you ever done it? Would you do it?



xpndbl3 01-17-2007 03:12 AM

Toluene is 116 octane IIRC. What octane are you shooting for and I can dust off the old chemistry brain here and make a formula for toluene plus ....what is it out there 92 i think? Anways what octane do you want to make and I'll set it up. Next jetting may be different due to the difference in available energy in Toluene vs regular old 92 or 100 race fuel etc.

Ferocity02 01-17-2007 11:53 AM

I'm aiming for around 100 octane starting with 91. I will be mixing it in a 5 gallon jug. I think 30% toluene will be about right. Re-jetting will definitely need to be done, but that's no biggie.

1997bird 01-17-2007 12:23 PM

If you use low octane fuel it seams to mix better. The following is a formula that a freind gave to me that likes to play with chemistry:

10 gallons mix

-1 pint of Tolulene
-1 pint Naptha
-1 5oz bottle of Rosenal lighter fluid (highest Benzene content)
-1 bottle of fuel injection cleaner for trace chemicals

With this formula a guy asked if he could buy some fuel off of them at the track since the VP gas truck had left for the day. He had been running the C16 VP race fuel, after putting 5 gallons of the above mix in his car, he ran 0.2 of a second faster in the 1/4 mile.

Camaroholic 01-17-2007 12:52 PM


Originally Posted by 1997bird
He had been running the C16 VP race fuel, after putting 5 gallons of the above mix in his car, he ran 0.2 of a second faster in the 1/4 mile.

"Too high" of an octane will slow you down as well. There is a 'sweet spot' for your tuning on octane. He ran faster because the C16 was burning slower than the 'new stuff', and he made more power with the new stuff. He was closer to the "edge of detonation" though.

The 'goal' should be to run your car on the lowest octane you can run it without detonating. That will be your 'sweet spot'. :)

1997bird 01-17-2007 01:19 PM

I don't know that he was running close to detination. With this same formula in my 79' Camaro I was running 44* total timing on a 355 SBC with out detination. My quench on that motor is .029"-.030" (I know that this will also help reduce detination). The compression ratio on the motor is 9.4:1 (old ported 882 heads). I was racing this car at Bandemere Speedway in Denver, CO and in Albuquerque, NM. Bolth are high altitude tracks. I continued advancing my timing until my time slips were affected. I am useing a solid flat tappet cam that is Adv dur of 274/280, @.050 236/242, net lift is .485/.494 w/1.5 RR, LSA is 110*+4*. I hope that this info will help with the fuel comparison.

NiceTry 01-19-2007 11:33 AM

Are you wanting to do this because a GOOD octane isn't available to you?

Old Geezer 01-19-2007 12:06 PM

A pint of tol in 10 gallons does not raise the octane, a significant amt.. Not even close to 116.
Our turbo Buicks use it at as much as 30%.. That works well.

Ferocity02 01-19-2007 05:56 PM

91 is the most octane you can get here. Race gas is very expensive, tough to find, and a lot to ship. I am looking to run around 30% toluene to get around 98 octane or so.

chris mac 01-19-2007 06:17 PM

just take the # of gallons of toluene that you're wanting to mix and multiply that by the octane of the toluene. then take the number of gal. of fuel that you're wanting to run and multiply that by the octane of the fuel. add them together and divide by the total number of gallons in the mix.
1 gal. of toluene = 116
3 gal. of gas at 91 oct. = 273
273+116= 389
389 divided by 4 (total # of gal) = 97.2 octane mix :secret2:

pretty sure that's right...

mac

GR33N GoblinM6 01-20-2007 01:51 AM

you need to call around to your 76 stations.. because here in SoCal.. i know of 3 station that carry 100 octane on the pump.. right off hand the one i always go to is the 76 station in Norco CA.. usually stop there on the way to Fontana raceway.. there is also a station close to Downey.. and the last one i know of is near santa clarita

mcamp001 01-20-2007 12:28 PM

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
1 gal. of toluene = 116
3 gal. of gas at 91 oct. = 273
273+116= 389
389 divided by 4 (total # of gal) = 97.2 octane mix
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

how can adding more 91 octane gas increase the octane, thats insane. One gallon of 91 is 91, 100 gallons of 91 is still 91. Octane doesn't add up as you increase volume. Or I'm I just totally missing something here?

mrdragster1970 01-20-2007 02:07 PM

He's averaging octane, we do the same around here when we can't get what we need. It has worked fine for me in the past. I only do it with fuel, never additives, so it might not be the same.

hepcat 01-20-2007 07:00 PM

i love this site, and i love corvettes.

Ari G 01-21-2007 04:51 PM

2stroke engine oil is used for lubrication in the fuel mix

The maximum content of toluene is about 40-45% in DD Street Cars

Toluene damages rubber(the rubber gets dry and cracks)

M3 Muscle 01-21-2007 05:01 PM


Originally Posted by mcamp001
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
1 gal. of toluene = 116
3 gal. of gas at 91 oct. = 273
273+116= 389
389 divided by 4 (total # of gal) = 97.2 octane mix
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

how can adding more 91 octane gas increase the octane, thats insane. One gallon of 91 is 91, 100 gallons of 91 is still 91. Octane doesn't add up as you increase volume. Or I'm I just totally missing something here?

Same as (116 X .25) + (91 X .75) = 97.25 octane

Ferocity02 01-21-2007 11:33 PM

I can do 35% toluene and 65% 91 and turn out with a 100 octane mix.

(35%*116)+(65%*91) = 99.75 :D

Is Toluene 116 octane for sure? Any sources you guys have for this? How about Xylene?

xpndbl3 01-21-2007 11:59 PM

yes it's 116 for sure. ;) Or else my college has some explaining to do. :lol:

ezrollin 01-22-2007 12:05 AM

ok, so putting in a bunch of octane on a lower compression (like N/A) engine is a ricer move.
Is there any way to REDUCE OCTANE? So that it burns Faster, Stronger?
For like a 9.4:1 N/A engine? :hijack: :hail:

Ferocity02 01-22-2007 01:02 AM

You probably don't want to run anything lower than 91, or else you might get some detonation.


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