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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i am looking now to buy a vehicle, as mentioned on another post. I am wondering about things like - what kind of fuel is the most likely that I can depend on? If I have land I can raise either soybean or corn to make either biodiesel or alcohol...etc What about emp and electronics in recent engines? and just the ability to maintain and repair and care made after 1990. I not only have a preppers mindset but also a survivalist as well. What are you doing with regards to these issues?
 

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You can basically make poison moonshine (shine so powerful it's toxic) and run it through one of those new flexfuel engines maybe cut it with a little gasoline. I have seen plenty of older Mercedes diesel engines that have been shown dozens of times to run well off vegetable oil right out of the jug. There are a few kinds of filter systems that turn waste fryer oil into something almost exactly like diesel, then I have seen systems that you mount in your garage that turn biomass (with a few chemicals) into gasoline. I myself run a Toyota FJ that is recommended to run premium fuel. I can put regular in it but it suddenly feels like 24HP weaker but funny enough gets better MPG. Running premium she's built to near 300 horsepower. Running regular she acts like the stock one with maybe 2-3 more miles per gallon. When I visited the Midwest recently I filled it up with a tank of racing fuel (some stations up there have a special pump that dispenses racing fuel- especially near racetracks) and that thing was a straight up demon all the way home. She even sounded louder and felt like a racecar. Her engine could barely handle it, and it's a real brute of an engine. They use the same engine in new Toyota log chippers and it screams like a NASCAR when they run them. A car engine is just a petrol-fueled high efficiency air pump. It sucks in air and gas, blows out power. Same could be said of almost any combustion engine.

What kind of car you got? I could give you a good appraisal of the situation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks! The new cars have way too much electronic stuff - they really scare me in the long run. I do not have a car yet. I am partial to the Chevy Astro van. It is reasonably comfortable for a long trip, can be turned into a simple camper, can tow 4-5 tons so can be a useful utility vehicle if need be. It comes with a 4.3l v6 and a wimpy transmission. I have looked at basic engines sizes and it seems that the 3.0l mercedes turbo diesel would fit into it without too much complaining I would prefer having someone put a finely tuned cummins 4bt into one but the engine is too tall and the exhausts and a few other parts don't cooperate. My basic requirement is to be able to tow at least 6,000 pounds without shortening its life, be able to cruise at 70 on the freeway and have enough space inside to be used as a simple camper for a couple of people...25 mpg would be nice.and awd as well. Considering these criteria...I have seen a couple of Scout II with diesels that meet all of them... a cherokee with a diesel would also...Isuzu trooper...medium sized pickups with "club cabs"...older toyota landcruiers w/ diesel
 

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Pengyou... I'm not sure where you are at as far as prepping... but having land does not equate to having fuel. You mentioned growing corn or soybeans... well, you have to have access to seed, a way to till the land, a way to plant, a way to water it, a way to harvest it, and after ensuring you are leaving a bit... a way to harvest seeds for next years crop so you can repeat this. Then... a way to process it into fuel... which is a different industry and area of expertise all by itself. Plus... you need a way to store unprocessed corn/soybeans that were harvested (so mice and rats don't eat it all) and a safe way to store the final fuel product. It's a heck of a lot more work than just buying land and modifying a vehicle. Since the only way to do this is to bug in... I'd suggest foot, peddle or animal transportation. Natural food or food crops for pack or riding animals are much simpler to support and will free you to grow food crops, hunt, gather wood, protect your place, scout or trade for other supplies, etc.
 

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Most of the trucks you listed weren't available with diesels in the US. There were a few Cherokees with Renault diesels, but if you could find one, parts would be an issue. A diesel 4X4 pickup is the best of both worlds. My Ram might not get 25 MPG, but it will reach 20 hwy empty and ~15 towing my RV. Any of the "Big 3" trucks have plenty of parts available and diesels run forever.
BTW: I doubt seriously that an Astro van has a tow rating of 10,000 lbs. (i.e. 5 tons). More likely around 3500-5000.
There is a good site online about diesel conversions. Next time I'm on here, I'll link it.
 
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