My BioDiesel Processor  

Details on the benefits of BioDiesel and how to make it are covered in great detail on several web sites. My favorites are Journey to Forever  for a wide ranging discussion of biofuels, the Cooperative BD Tutorial for specifics on how to make your own, and the National Biodiesel Board for what's up on the commercial end of the industry.

Inspired by Josh Tickell's From the Fryer to the Fuel Tank, I started making BioDiesel in 2003. Each year I have expanded my production capabilities to the point that I'm now making 50 gallon batches. While many people are making these processors, the real goal is to raise awareness and get cleaner-burning, renewable BioDiesel at every filling station.

  • Pictured to the right is my blue 55-gallon oil collection barrel. The turkey cooker and pump system allow preheat and dewatering capabilities. Used fryer grease, waiting to be filtered and added to the barrel, is in the buckets and cubies piling up on the left. At the end of the process, finished fuel is stored and dispensed from the white 55-gallon barrel pictured to the right.

  • Once 50 gallons of vegetable oil has been collected, it is pumped into the Appleseed processor, pictured below. This, my latest processor, is based on a used 82-gallon hot water heater. An (110V) electric heater element in the bottom of the processor keeps the mixture at 120*F. Once the oil is in the processor and heated, 12 gallons of Methanol/lye mixture is pumped in from the (3) white cubies. The entire mixture is pump-mixed for 2 hours. Then the mixture is allowed to settle, usually overnight. A dark soap mixture, which has settled to the bottom, is drained into cubies. Once the bulk of the soap has been drained, the fresh fuel is pumped to twin 55-gallon wash tanks to the right of the processor. After several mist and bubble washings, the fuel is pumped to the drying tank to be dewatered, and lastly through the micron filter to the storage tank.

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