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Thread: E85 Vs 93 Octane?

  1. #1
    Senior Member TDSapp's Avatar
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    E85 Vs 93 Octane?

    I have seen on some other cars that they get better horsepower and output when running E85 through their car. What does it take to tune your car for E85 when you are not running fuel injection? I have a Holley carb and will be running around 10.5:1 compression. I was wondering if it will do any better with E85 or if I should stick with 93 octane.
    Tim Sapp
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  2. #2

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    Do you guys still have the option of non-ethanol gas in TX? If so, I'd stick with that if your car isn't driven almost daily. No idea if you'll get better performance with E85, but gas with ethanol SUCKS. Ethanol will absorb moisture from the air and you get phase separation, which is a fancy way of saying that you get a nasty ethanol/water mixture at the bottom of your tank. It's more of a problem for EFI cars, but I can't imagine that it's good for anything. Even my '67 Mustang hates it. I've had it kill multipe fuel pumps on motorcycles when they've sat for as little as a few weeks. Stabil claims to help, but at best it slows it but doesn't prevent it. If we had the option for non-ethanol gas in CA I'd go out of my way to find it.

    OK, rant over. Sorry. I hate that ****. It makes zero sense from an economic or environmental standpoint. Purely a concession to the corn industry. OK, rant really over now.
    MkIV Roadster build: Coyote, IRS, TKO600. Ordered 10/24/18. Delivered 1/29/19. Build thread here.

  3. #3

    Steve >> aka: GoDadGo
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    If you want to go down this path, then be my guest:

    https://www.jegs.com/p/Quick-Fuel/Qu...26991/10002/-1

    Just don't see any advantage other than eating up rubber parts with the joy of some added corrosion thrown in for fun!

  4. #4

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    E-85 a great fuel that burns clean and cool, and can make a boat load of power. My previous FFR had an ECU that could switch back and forth between the two. We went to Moab on year, and it was HOT. Like, Africa Hot. And - it being early summer - there was a lot of construction along the way. The other cars were having trouble keeping cool. But my car just hummed along and never got over 200*; even through the stop and go construction sites.

    I currently use it on the race track in a slightly warmed over LS6. Same thing. It makes a boat load of power, and never gets hot. Last year we raced in Pueblo, CO, in July. The hotter it got, the faster my car went - it was awesome. Other cars were overheating and coming in early, but I didn't have any trouble. I think about 210* was the highest I saw. Oil temps stayed about the same, while others were running over 300*.

    Ethanol is also an excellent solvent. Your fuel system will stay amazingly clean through the years. Same with your spark plugs, I change mine once a year, and that's probably too often.

    The down side is that it can be difficult to find. I don't know of any place in the state of Utah that sells it, so I have to carry every gallon I need when I race at Miller.

    And, you'll use about 20-25% more e-85 than gasoline because of the lower BTU's. With a carb, you'll need bigger boosters, pumps, and jets. Might need a bigger needle and seat, fuel pump, and lines, too. Since you have a carb, you won't be able to switch back and forth, and that sort of limits your driving.
    Last edited by Bob Cowan; 06-24-2019 at 12:58 PM.
    .boB "Iron Man"
    NASA Rocky Mountain, TTU #42
    FFR MII: Dart 427W, Momar 8 stack EFI, Tremeac TKO, IRS, Red with Ghost Flames, 600'ish HP.
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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by GoDadGo View Post
    If you want to go down this path, then be my guest:

    Just don't see any advantage other than eating up rubber parts with the joy of some added corrosion thrown in for fun!
    Common misconception. In the early years of alcohol fuel, methanol was used. I believe some race classes still use it.

    e-85 is ethanol. If you used quality parts in the build, corrosion is not a problem.
    .boB "Iron Man"
    NASA Rocky Mountain, TTU #42
    FFR MII: Dart 427W, Momar 8 stack EFI, Tremeac TKO, IRS, Red with Ghost Flames, 600'ish HP.
    -- Gone, but never forgotten
    BDR 1642: Coyote, 6 Speed Auto, Edelbrock Supercharger
    www.RacingTheExocet.com

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnK View Post
    Do you guys still have the option of non-ethanol gas in TX? If so, I'd stick with that if your car isn't driven almost daily. No idea if you'll get better performance with E85, but gas with ethanol SUCKS. Ethanol will absorb moisture from the air and you get phase separation, which is a fancy way of saying that you get a nasty ethanol/water mixture at the bottom of your tank. It's more of a problem for EFI cars, but I can't imagine that it's good for anything. Even my '67 Mustang hates it. I've had it kill multipe fuel pumps on motorcycles when they've sat for as little as a few weeks. Stabil claims to help, but at best it slows it but doesn't prevent it. If we had the option for non-ethanol gas in CA I'd go out of my way to find it.

    OK, rant over. Sorry. I hate that ****. It makes zero sense from an economic or environmental standpoint. Purely a concession to the corn industry. OK, rant really over now.
    Well, we've had e-10 nationwide for how many decades? Millions of vehicles use it for billions of miles. It's really not that bad, and doesn't cause that many equipment problems. And it does have some advantages. SOme states have even gone to e-15, and I haven't heard much about it since it came on the market.

    As for the economics of it, you're right. It doesn't make economic sense to use our food supply to power our vehicles. That's why it needs gov't sponsorship.
    .boB "Iron Man"
    NASA Rocky Mountain, TTU #42
    FFR MII: Dart 427W, Momar 8 stack EFI, Tremeac TKO, IRS, Red with Ghost Flames, 600'ish HP.
    -- Gone, but never forgotten
    BDR 1642: Coyote, 6 Speed Auto, Edelbrock Supercharger
    www.RacingTheExocet.com

  7. #7

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    E10 or E15 may not be a problem for cars built in the last 20 years that are daily drivers, as the gas will get used quickly enough that phase separation is not a problem. However, for older cars or cars that sit for any length of time ethanol is still a big problem.
    MkIV Roadster build: Coyote, IRS, TKO600. Ordered 10/24/18. Delivered 1/29/19. Build thread here.

  8. #8

    Steve >> aka: GoDadGo
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Cowan View Post
    Common misconception. In the early years of alcohol fuel, methanol was used. I believe some race classes still use it.

    e-85 is ethanol. If you used quality parts in the build, corrosion is not a problem.
    Bob,

    I don't understand why would you eat or in this case burn the food that my food eats?

    https://youtu.be/z0O_VYcsIk8

    Oil comes from dead animals so it really is like my car runs on meat.

    Steve
    Last edited by GoDadGo; 06-24-2019 at 01:46 PM.

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  10. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by GoDadGo View Post
    Bob,

    Oil comes from dead animals so it really is like my car runs on meat.

    Steve
    Maybe.
    .boB "Iron Man"
    NASA Rocky Mountain, TTU #42
    FFR MII: Dart 427W, Momar 8 stack EFI, Tremeac TKO, IRS, Red with Ghost Flames, 600'ish HP.
    -- Gone, but never forgotten
    BDR 1642: Coyote, 6 Speed Auto, Edelbrock Supercharger
    www.RacingTheExocet.com

  11. #10
    Seasoned Citizen NAZ's Avatar
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    Wish we had true high octane E85 at the pump here in AZ. But not a lot of corn grown here like the mid-west, 47% of our agriculture is beef and the greenies would love to see that disappear.
    33 Hot Rod Super Pro Drag Racer
    33 HR NHRA Cert Roll Cage Build

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