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propane powered antique and collector cars.


jim43

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Is anyone running their collector car on propane these days. T. Boone Pickens is advocating a major switch to propane power for our truck and general transportation fleets as a means of reducing both emissions and our dependence on foreign oil. Gas is cheap now, but we all know what is coming when the world economy picks up again, and not too far down the road $4.00 a gallon for gas will look good to us

Like the electrics and hybrids, the propane powered vehicle is not new technology, but old technology being revisited. When I was a kid my Grandfather ran a bottled propane gas plant in Michigan. This was 1950. The delivery trucks all ran on propane, and when my Grandfather bought a new yellow and black Dodge car in 1955, he immediately had the top painted white to make it a tri-tone colored car, and he had it converted to propane too. All of this fleet ran on both gasoline and propane, giving them great range of travel, not too necessary for the short range delivery vehicles, but perhaps handier for passenger cars. These vehicles ran very well, and nothing odd was thought about it. A GMC, an International and the Dodge. The big delivery bulk trucks ran on it too.

So I am wondering if anyone is running their old cars on propane. Another advantage to propane is its clean burning. Much cleaner exhaust emissions and when the engine is eventually torn down, it will be spotless inside. No carbon buildup.

Well, down the road I intend to give it a try in a caravan kind of car, just wondering if anyone else is thinking along these lines. jim43

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I have a 65 Ford pu that has run on propane since 68. I personally feel this is the reason that it is still running as it now has over 250k miles on the 352 engine and the heads have never been off. You don't get the fuel economy or the power with propane and with todays engines it won't run as efficantly as propane likes HIGH compression.

The local propane dis removed the propane conversion from both his 02 Ford trucks as no one could make them properly run or adj the computer to let the engine right.

Bill

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I understood that the Pickens Plan was for Compressed Natural Gas rather then LP or propane gas. Either way, it seems it can be done, but you have to have room for the tank, and would take away from "original" for those to show. Depending on your driving amount, why not consider converting your regular car to propane or CNG, and "save" the gasoline for the old car, or cars.

Just my opinion.

John

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Hi Bill;

That is great milage out of a 352. That was the experience at my Grandfathers too, as I recall. My Dad used to say the pickups weren't quite as powerful when running on propane too. But they got by just fine, and I now realize they were seriously over loaded when ever they left the plant with their load of 100# propane tanks in the back. They never left with less than a dozen tanks, and the tare wt. on the tanks was around 75# plus the 100# of gas in each meant quite a load. Of course they came back with just the tare wt. on board. I don't think any of them were ever torn down either.

jim43 Lompoc High Grad, a long time ago.

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I run my 07 Dodge crew cab on Natural Gas. I now have about 32,000 miles on it. It can be a little quirky and finding someone to work on it is difficult. Your average mechanic is baffled when you take it to the dealer. Can be quite comical. Here in Utah the price of CNG is 88 cents. I does make it very economical to run. But I can't imagine putting it on my 30. The octane rating on CNG is 130 and the pressure to fill is 3000 psi. The tanks are large and the cost of the conversion would be around $6,000. I don't think the engine would handle it well. Also I don't think you would save enough in driving this car to pay for the added expense. Although it has crossed my mind.

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