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Triple Tank Trouble

I have finally managed to prove that trouble always comes in bundles of 3s.

In the last 3 weeks the whole of my Norton Bike Collection (3 bikes) has been sidelined by fuel tank problems.

First the fibreglass tank on my 650 Cafe racer succumbed to the relentless onslaught on petrol contaminated by Ethanol. This, despite two inner layers of protection using Slosh and Ethanolmate goo. Also I have religiously filled up with supergrade fuel.

Next, as a back-up plan, I sent off my steel Atlas tank (which actually came off the 650) for cleaning and painting. It only had three holes in it when dispatched. One for fuel in and two for fuel out. Now it can be used as a strainer for making tea .

Finally.....the biggest kick in the teeth came when the newest bike in my collection also decided to decorate itself and the ground in spectacular and potentially explosive fashion.

See attachments for views of the bad news.

Attachments 650-cafe-racer-dommie-jpg Atlas%20Tank.jpg
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Come on Phil, whilst I can accept issues with older Nortons I think you are being unfair to suggest that your 961 has any issues .

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Phil, I'm sorry to hear of your problems with contaminated, yes contaminated, albeit legally contaminated fuel.

These are 'my' basic rules that might keep you safe:

1) Avoid ALL Supermarket petrol.

2) Avoid Shell

3) Avoid ALL premium 95RON fuel

4) Avoid any fuel marked up as EN228

5) Avoid fuel sold in Devon and Cornwall, Teesside and Scotland.

I suspect that with the exception of Shell, the major brands such as BP and Texaco may be E0 as far as super unleaded goes BP ultimate for example. However, Esso have written to say that outside of the above areas (5) that Esso Supreme Synergy does not contain Ethanol AND they say they have no intention of adding any! That is the good bit...

However, some ESSO stations have a Tesco Express store attached, beware of these as they sell Tesco petrol. This is not Synergy and the pumps are marked up as EN228.

Thanks John for mentioning Slosh as being ethanol resistant, rather than ethanol proof. I have used Slosh in my 650 tank without issue, but then I go out of my way to only buy E0 petrol.

Gordon, J, North of the boarder (Not posted for a while) puts a wee bit of 2 stroke in his super unleaded. Hope you are OK, Gordon?

The likes of the FBHVC who are promoting the current E5 rubbish as a legacy fuel (Cometh the E10) endorse several anti ethanol agents / stabilizers you need to pay for. Just remember that these are not a cure for ethanol contamination, they just slow the destructive process down.

United we stand / divided we fall!

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Alive and well! The splash of 2 stroke oil in the various tanks seems to be doing its job. Some bikes are only raised from their slumbers a couple of times a year and yet all start OK with no gummed carb problems so far. This week I moved my wife's A10 from the storage shed where it has been sitting for 15 years (a long story) to the workshop for recommissioning. The petrol in the tank hasn't turned to sludge and seems OK.

The only problem I have encountered is in her Yamaha Diversion which was left sitting with cheap pump fuel in it and no 2 stroke oil. The jets all gunged up. Now I NEVER buy cheap fuel, petrol or diesel. Even the tractors get BP Ultimate diesel rather than red having seen the gunge that formed in the bottom of a 45 gallon oil drum.

Gordon.

P.S. Once you get north and west of Perth, the petrol stations give you a choice of petrol or diesel. Some people have been caught out by the reduced mpg from the 2 star and the distance between petrol stations. Tourists be warned!

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Good to hear from you again, Gordon. 15 year old petrol (Well before the contamination) not causing issues proves the point against the so called modern petrol that some suggest has a shelf life of only 3 weeks. No good if you lay up a bike for a month or more without draining it all out.

I hope to start up my 16H this weekend for the first time in almost 2 years. I know the petrol is OK in that because the Petseal applied in 1997 is still in perfect order.

Just remember that when the Blair / Brown government allowed for up to 5% ethanol by stealth, there was no requirement to mark this up at the pumps, no warnings and no responsibility for damage through the use of this modified / contaminated fuel! Never forget that.

Finally, no subsequent UK government has repealed the Ed Miliband 2008 Climate Change Act or the Renewable Fuels for Transport Obligation, a part of that Act.

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Previously Neil Wyatt wrote:

Phil, I'm sorry to hear of your problems with contaminated, yes contaminated, albeit legally contaminated fuel.

These are 'my' basic rules that might keep you safe:

1) Avoid ALL Supermarket petrol.

2) Avoid Shell

3) Avoid ALL premium 95RON fuel

4) Avoid any fuel marked up as EN228

5) Avoid fuel sold in Devon and Cornwall, Teesside and Scotland.

I suspect that with the exception of Shell, the major brands such as BP and Texaco may be E0 as far as super unleaded goes BP ultimate for example. However, Esso have written to say that outside of the above areas (5) that Esso Supreme Synergy does not contain Ethanol AND they say they have no intention of adding any! That is the good bit...

However, some ESSO stations have a Tesco Express store attached, beware of these as they sell Tesco petrol. This is not Synergy and the pumps are marked up as EN228.

Thanks John for mentioning Slosh as being ethanol resistant, rather than ethanol proof. I have used Slosh in my 650 tank without issue, but then I go out of my way to only buy E0 petrol.

Gordon, J, North of the boarder (Not posted for a while) puts a wee bit of 2 stroke in his super unleaded. Hope you are OK, Gordon?

The likes of the FBHVC who are promoting the current E5 rubbish as a legacy fuel (Cometh the E10) endorse several anti ethanol agents / stabilizers you need to pay for. Just remember that these are not a cure for ethanol contamination, they just slow the destructive process down.

United we stand / divided we fall!

Thank you very much for the information concerning the Esso/Tesco sites. I received a reply from Esso on this subject which made no mention of the Tesco/Esso pumps containing Ethanol. I was caught out and when I examined the pump after reading your forum post on the subject I found it was marked EN228.

True Esso garages seem to be few and far between.

Permalink

Previously Neil Wyatt wrote:

Phil, I'm sorry to hear of your problems with contaminated, yes contaminated, albeit legally contaminated fuel.

These are 'my' basic rules that might keep you safe:

1) Avoid ALL Supermarket petrol.

2) Avoid Shell

3) Avoid ALL premium 95RON fuel

4) Avoid any fuel marked up as EN228

5) Avoid fuel sold in Devon and Cornwall, Teesside and Scotland.

I suspect that with the exception of Shell, the major brands such as BP and Texaco may be E0 as far as super unleaded goes BP ultimate for example. However, Esso have written to say that outside of the above areas (5) that Esso Supreme Synergy does not contain Ethanol AND they say they have no intention of adding any! That is the good bit...

However, some ESSO stations have a Tesco Express store attached, beware of these as they sell Tesco petrol. This is not Synergy and the pumps are marked up as EN228.

Thanks John for mentioning Slosh as being ethanol resistant, rather than ethanol proof. I have used Slosh in my 650 tank without issue, but then I go out of my way to only buy E0 petrol.

Gordon, J, North of the boarder (Not posted for a while) puts a wee bit of 2 stroke in his super unleaded. Hope you are OK, Gordon?

The likes of the FBHVC who are promoting the current E5 rubbish as a legacy fuel (Cometh the E10) endorse several anti ethanol agents / stabilizers you need to pay for. Just remember that these are not a cure for ethanol contamination, they just slow the destructive process down.

United we stand / divided we fall!

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I wonder if any fibreglass tank would withstand 40+ years of petrol, irrespective of wether it has ethanol in it or not.

Phil's photo of the steel Dommie tank looks like it has been sat with an amount of water in the bottom for some considerable time. My money would be that it was on the side of the tank with the normal tap in. i.e. the tap with the stack pipe that leaves fuel, or in this case water, beneath it for use as a reserve. The problem is that the reserve tap drains from the other side and that water/fuel never gets touched unless you tip the bike on it's side to get at it. Top tip, get two reserve taps and take turns in running it on one side until it runs out.

Interpol 2 typically rot out one side of the tank because they only have one tap and a drain plug on t'other side. Graham Wilshaw sells a tap to access the other side but you have to use it now and again to rid yourself of the ageing fuel.

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David, it really depends on the quality of the fibreglass tank. Until this fuel contamination came about, because it was imposed upon us by stealth, I know of many tanks, well made tanks that had been in service certainly since the 70's.

The only way you are going to have water in the bottom of your tank is to put water in an empty tank and why would you do that? Or leave the tank standing will ethanol contaminated fuel that will attract moisture and by means of phase separation, if allowed to sit in the bottom of your tank. Won't do much good if you try to start up with that situation either. Just take a look at the knackered lawnmowers for example whose owners tried to wake them up in the Spring. It happens because people are not aware fully of the issues and believe that anti ethanol stabilsers is the cure. They are not, they just delay the damage!

Richard, true that genuine ESSO stations are not as popular as others but I pass one at least once a month and so I fill up the car with Synergy Supreme 97RON E0 and fill up a plastic can or two as necessary. The alternative is not worth considering.

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Previously james_fanning wrote:

Where did that leak on your 961 specifically come from ?

Thanks for the answer when we met at the Southern Classic Show today !

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When I used to have to refuel RAF helicopters from drum stock that had been standing, one of the checks prior to use was for water and it was nearly always there in small quantities. Someone told me that fuel was just mineralised water, not quite sure about that. I'm talking about Avtur here which is paraffin in layman's terms. I think any fuel will attract water or separate out in time.

Tanks that you have seen since the seventies Neil, may still have deteriorated in 45 years with non ethanol petrol in them. we'll never know.

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First flight of the day in a piston-engines aircraft always involves a check for water in the fuel. Inevitably condensation will occur in fuel tanks as they breathe damp air as the temperature varies. With aircraft, they are normally filled to full at the end of the day, minimising the air space and so minimising the condensation possibilities. This works for any fuel tank, so I always aim to leave petrol tanks full where a bike is left to stand for any length of time.

Phil's Atlas tank leaks closely resemble the standard Japanese tank failure - a line of rust where water has gathered at the bottom. Japanese tanks being made of thinner steel, it generally happens to them sooner.

Whatever happened with the 961? A bit disappointing.

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The last job John Denver did on dry land was to check his two fuel tanks for ethanol contamination, before he fatally crashed into the Pacific. He was stretching to switch tanks at the time with a foot on the rudder. (No ethanol) Ethanol not allowed for aviation use.

Are 961 tanks ethanol proof? Was this a one off? Should Indian tin bashers (Sorry, craftsmen) get interested?

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Previously richard_evans wrote:

Previously Neil Wyatt wrote:

Phil, I'm sorry to hear of your problems with contaminated, yes contaminated, albeit legally contaminated fuel.

These are 'my' basic rules that might keep you safe:

1) Avoid ALL Supermarket petrol.

2) Avoid Shell

3) Avoid ALL premium 95RON fuel

4) Avoid any fuel marked up as EN228

5) Avoid fuel sold in Devon and Cornwall, Teesside and Scotland.

I suspect that with the exception of Shell, the major brands such as BP and Texaco may be E0 as far as super unleaded goes BP ultimate for example. However, Esso have written to say that outside of the above areas (5) that Esso Supreme Synergy does not contain Ethanol AND they say they have no intention of adding any! That is the good bit...

However, some ESSO stations have a Tesco Express store attached, beware of these as they sell Tesco petrol. This is not Synergy and the pumps are marked up as EN228.

Thanks John for mentioning Slosh as being ethanol resistant, rather than ethanol proof. I have used Slosh in my 650 tank without issue, but then I go out of my way to only buy E0 petrol.

Gordon, J, North of the boarder (Not posted for a while) puts a wee bit of 2 stroke in his super unleaded. Hope you are OK, Gordon?

The likes of the FBHVC who are promoting the current E5 rubbish as a legacy fuel (Cometh the E10) endorse several anti ethanol agents / stabilizers you need to pay for. Just remember that these are not a cure for ethanol contamination, they just slow the destructive process down.

United we stand / divided we fall!

Despite this very good advice I've found it very difficult to find Ethanol free petrol in the Stockport area. None of the people working in the service stations had a clue.

I found an Esso garage without a Tesco outlet on Wellington Road North which stocks Esso Supreme + (plus) (Ron 97). I was unsure of this so I spoke their Esso customer services and they confirmed emphatically that this fuel was Ethanol free. Another Esso garage without a Tesco outlet about 2 miles away sold Esso Supreme (but not the 'plus'). That is clearly not Ethanol free, so not all Esso garages sell the plus..

A BP Garage stocked a Premium BP petrol but there was nothing at all to indicate whether it contained Ethanol. I telephoned their BP Customer Services and they told me equally as emphatically that all BP petrol, no matter what grade, contains up to 5% Ethanol.

I expected a long delay in making enquiries from the Esso and BP Customer services on this topic, but no, they both knew exactly what I was talking about and were well versed in their response. They have a considerable number of people asking the same question and have done their homework.

I could not find any Total garages in the places suggested on their web site.

Later 24.10.16 a reply from Texaco by email to say that both their Premium Grade and Super Unleaded now contain 5% Ethanol. They do not supply fuel without Ethanol any more.

It's a real minefield

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Hello allHave been following this thread with interest as I have been thinking about this ethanol business lately Basically I wanted to test fuel and get an idea of ethanol content Found this...http://www.autofuelstc.com/fuel_testing.phtml Tried it out using my burette with interesting resultsHaven't tested to many fuels yet but results do seem to confirm that Esso supeme is good My mate nicked my can of BP super before I could test itEsso supreme 0.3%Ordinary fuel 3.5%These can not be regarded as accurate but the difference is obvious Have a mission to go and buy cans of different grades and brands and test them but this is taking some time!BTW If you want a laugh try http://www.petroldirect.comLaurence
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Previously Gordon Johnston wrote:

First flight of the day in a piston-engines aircraft always involves a check for water in the fuel. Inevitably condensation will occur in fuel tanks as they breathe damp air as the temperature varies. With aircraft, they are normally filled to full at the end of the day, minimising the air space and so minimising the condensation possibilities. This works for any fuel tank, so I always aim to leave petrol tanks full where a bike is left to stand for any length of time.

Phil's Atlas tank leaks closely resemble the standard Japanese tank failure - a line of rust where water has gathered at the bottom. Japanese tanks being made of thinner steel, it generally happens to them sooner.

Whatever happened with the 961? A bit disappointing.

When I first started driving diesel cars twenty years ago, which then has high tolerance mechanic diesel pumps, I was given similar advice by the foreman at a diesel specialist, was to keep the tank full to minimise the about of water in the fuel which he said occurred in a part empty tank due to condensation.

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First thing, yes, this is a real dogs dinner in the UK and politically designed to be so! Esso Supreme is not good enough, it has to be Esso Supreme Synergy 97RON but not in the ethanol zones listed above.

In North Yorkshire there are stations in Tadcaster, Harrogate and Ripon all selling Esso Supreme Synergy 97RON. E0. Near Harrogate in Starbeck there is an Esso station with a Tesco Express shop selling Tesco Petrol...Supreme EN228, this is not Synergy and is E5.

Laurence, not sure what testing kit you have but there is a kit available that you only need a swab, therefore you don't even need to buy any petrol, just get some drips left in the nozzle.

It really looks like there is only genuine Esso stations left selling E0 in the UK, use them or lose them.

A year ago, Classic Bike Magazine did an article on a kit to take ethanol out of petrol. If it comes to that we need a joined up answer as to where to put the ethanol and water mix?

I'm still annoyed at the likes of the FBHVC backing E5 as their legacy fuel while endorsing some of these anti ethanol products, they are not the answer. The answer is to not have ethanol in your fuel. I became furious when I found so much damage to three of my bikes in 2006/2007 at a cost in my time and money to put right to find that the fuel had been changed in order to help meet renewable energy targets. Parliament and so called scientists didn't think the public needed to know. But just to safeguard themselves from claims they made it into law that up to 5% ethanol can be added without warning and would not be liable for any claims through the use of this solvent.

Am I furious? You bet I am. What happened to choice. Last time I drove in the US of A I could find plenty of E0, more in some states than others but in the UK we have Esso in most areas and that's it. How long before a bunch of Eco warriors have it shut down? The future is orange, rust coloured!

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The cynic in me sees a conspiracy!

ECO warriors in Germany now want no IC engines in new vehicles after 2030. As every new vehicle has to be at whatever this years emission level is, and our old vehicles have survived both time and 'government scrappage schemes' across Europe, what better way to get them off the road permanently than by inducing them to incinerate themselves by dissolving the fuel tanks!

Seriously though Neil, You are beginning to sound like a record that has stuck in the groove. Repeated ethanol disaster "rants" really isn't going to change anything. You have and do contribute lots of good, useful, pertinent information on these boards, and long may that continue, but the ethanol one is a lost cause. There are a heck of a lot more greenies about than Norton Owners! The Green movement really doesn't seem to care that it uses more energy to create ethanol than the ethanol contains (= more pollution), water waste and food shortages.

All the best,

George.

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Neil mentions that the FBHVC backs the use of ethanol in fuel; the representatives of the federation fought against ethanol on our behalf but the introduction was largely the result of EC legislation.

It's worth pointing out that the Norton Owners Club is a member of the federation and that the charges for the Club are 43 pence per member of the Club, so that's 43 pence of your Club Subscription which goes straight to the federations' funds. Other than policital representation in England, one of the primary reasons for being part of the federation is access to the public liability insurance and also product insurance policies which we require in order to operate the Club events and the Spares Scheme. Provision of insurance outside the federation would be much more expensive and time-consuming to find.

Colin Cheney, Honorary Secretary, the Norton Owners Club.

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I am suggesting that the three of you lot above begin to behave before someone sets AJD loose upon you all. Remember, she is due for parole in about 3 weeks time.

It should be me ranting and raving about damage the poxey Ethanol is wreaking with my 3 bikes.

Another 3........ here we go again. Is there no end to this pattern??? Anyway, after 3 weeks of patiently waiting for Christmas to arrive.....a man with a van turned up to take my new Norton back to its Creator for fixing. Plus if the factory hold onto my bike for 3 weeks it will be exactly one year since I paid the deposit and then excitedly waited 3 weeks for delivery. Is there no end to this spooky drivel???

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Previously Neil Wyatt wrote:

First thing, yes, this is a real dogs dinner in the UK and politically designed to be so! Esso Supreme is not good enough, it has to be Esso Supreme Synergy 97RON but not in the ethanol zones listed above.

In North Yorkshire there are stations in Tadcaster, Harrogate and Ripon all selling Esso Supreme Synergy 97RON. E0. Near Harrogate in Starbeck there is an Esso station with a Tesco Express shop selling Tesco Petrol...Supreme EN228, this is not Synergy and is E5.

Laurence, not sure what testing kit you have but there is a kit available that you only need a swab, therefore you don't even need to buy any petrol, just get some drips left in the nozzle.

It really looks like there is only genuine Esso stations left selling E0 in the UK, use them or lose them.

A year ago, Classic Bike Magazine did an article on a kit to take ethanol out of petrol. If it comes to that we need a joined up answer as to where to put the ethanol and water mix?

I'm still annoyed at the likes of the FBHVC backing E5 as their legacy fuel while endorsing some of these anti ethanol products, they are not the answer. The answer is to not have ethanol in your fuel. I became furious when I found so much damage to three of my bikes in 2006/2007 at a cost in my time and money to put right to find that the fuel had been changed in order to help meet renewable energy targets. Parliament and so called scientists didn't think the public needed to know. But just to safeguard themselves from claims they made it into law that up to 5% ethanol can be added without warning and would not be liable for any claims through the use of this solvent.

Am I furious? You bet I am. What happened to choice. Last time I drove in the US of A I could find plenty of E0, more in some states than others but in the UK we have Esso in most areas and that's it. How long before a bunch of Eco warriors have it shut down? The future is orange, rust coloured!

Neil.

It's misleading to call it Esso Supreme Synergy. Synergy is a name currently applied to all the Esso brands including the lowests grades. The fuel which is Ethanol free is only Esso Synergy Supreme + (PLUS). which is 97 RON.

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Previously laurence_king wrote:

Hello all Have been following this thread with interest as I have been thinking about this ethanol business lately Basically I wanted to test fuel and get an idea of ethanol content Found this...http://www.autofuelstc.com/fuel_testing.phtml Tried it out using my burette with interesting results Haven't tested to many fuels yet but results do seem to confirm that Esso supeme is good My mate nicked my can of BP super before I could test it Esso supreme 0.3% Ordinary fuel 3.5% These can not be regarded as accurate but the difference is obvious Have a mission to go and buy cans of different grades and brands and test them but this is taking some time! BTW If you want a laugh try http://www.petroldirect.com Laurence
Don't forget there is an Esso Supreme and an Esso Supreme Plus. Only the plus is Ethanol free according to an enquiry with Esso on 24.10.16. All these recommendations need need reviewing from time to time as it is a very fast moving market.
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That is exactly right, Richard and that is what I have been doing. Up until this Spring I was using BP Ultimate until they changed the formula and would no longer confirm E0 status. From a business point of view I'm certain that Esso will be happy to corner the veteran, vintage, classic and light aircraft market +.

Richard, my point was that the Tesco outlets marketed as Esso does not say Synergy on the pumps, at least not the one in Starbeck.

Colin, I responded to Matthew Vincent of the FBHVC a couple of times in the VMCC journal and wrote extensively on my VMCC Web site. (Not mentioning the NOC) I can give you the details if you require. But guess what: The Journal editor put a stop to discussing ethanol. Further, Mr Vincent claimed that FBHVC did not enter the ethanol debate until 2008, too late. (They back E5 as a legacy fuel and that is on record) Why were they not a stake holder?

What a stitch up. Divided we fall and the tanks will fail.

George, failure is when you give up. Should we not be working together to find E0 fuel and create demand for it OR drain your tanks and hang up your helmet for good?

Finally, I should have mentioned that much of the E5 fuel is very low grade / substandard with the octane level only raised by adding ethanol. Taking ethanol out in these circumstances might not help. A dogs dinner indeed!

What are we doing about it?

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Hi NeilWhere can one get the swab testing kit you mention, see there is one available in states My method gives a fair idea of proportion of water soluble parts in the fuelLatest test on BP Ultimate gives 4.8%BTW if you look at EN 228 spec http://www.mabanaft.co.uk/Mabanaft/images/pdf/prodspec-Regular-unleaded.pdf there are quite a few oxygenates present apart from ethanol, ie methanol etcFound this report which is well worth reading, covers issues using biofuel in aviation which also apply to mc usehttp://www.easa.europa.eu/system/files/dfu/Final_Report_EASA.2008-6-light.pdfI think this topic should be treated as an engineering problem, not a political one, but then I find politics very boring and there are never interesting solutionsLaurence
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Previously Neil Wyatt wrote:

That is exactly right, Richard and that is what I have been doing. Up until this Spring I was using BP Ultimate until they changed the formula and would no longer confirm E0 status. From a business point of view I'm certain that Esso will be happy to corner the veteran, vintage, classic and light aircraft market +.

Richard, my point was that the Tesco outlets marketed as Esso does not say Synergy on the pumps, at least not the one in Starbeck.

Colin, I responded to Matthew Vincent of the FBHVC a couple of times in the VMCC journal and wrote extensively on my VMCC Web site. (Not mentioning the NOC) I can give you the details if you require. But guess what: The Journal editor put a stop to discussing ethanol. Further, Mr Vincent claimed that FBHVC did not enter the ethanol debate until 2008, too late. (They back E5 as a legacy fuel and that is on record) Why were they not a stake holder?

What a stitch up. Divided we fall and the tanks will fail.

George, failure is when you give up. Should we not be working together to find E0 fuel and create demand for it OR drain your tanks and hang up your helmet for good?

Finally, I should have mentioned that much of the E5 fuel is very low grade / substandard with the octane level only raised by adding ethanol. Taking ethanol out in these circumstances might not help. A dogs dinner indeed!

What are we doing about it?

Esso Customer Services were quite happy to confirm on 24.10.16 that Esso Synergy Ultimate Plus is Ethanol free. They obviously have many enquiries on the same subject and were well versed on the subject.

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I fitted an alloy tank to my Commando about 5 years ago, apart from that I can't see ethanol having any effect at all, my fuel pipes are still there (tygon) and my carbs haven't dissolved. I've got better things to do than scour the countryside for E0 fuel. Just get on with thrashing the life out of your bike and enjoying it. (how much does Esso Synergy Ultimate Plus cost more than the cat piss I'm using?)

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David, your choice, if you believe in choice? Just a matter of time and you won't be the first telling me this...Good Luck.

Laurence, your method works well, I have a bag full of old Petseal I test on. (I took it out of my model 50 tank in soft strips) Only my 16H tank remains with the old Petseal. I'm not putting that at risk or the NOS 276 carb, thank you.

Thanks for the links, long but an education. The engineering solution is simple, just buy petrol without ethanol while there is limited choice. The problem is politicians and their targets + their Green bosses.

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Previously david_evans wrote:

I fitted an alloy tank to my Commando about 5 years ago, apart from that I can't see ethanol having any effect at all, my fuel pipes are still there (tygon) and my carbs haven't dissolved. I've got better things to do than scour the countryside for E0 fuel. Just get on with thrashing the life out of your bike and enjoying it. (how much does Esso Synergy Ultimate Plus cost more than the cat piss I'm using?)

David

No offence. You are entitled to your own opinion. There is an awful lot of interest in the Ethanol issue and I simply put up on the forum what I had discovered to save a duplication of effort on the part of anyone who happened to be one of those who was interested. The price is not of an consequence to someone who wants the stuff - you have to pay the going rate.

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Quite right Richard, anyone not interested doesn't have to read the ethanol discussions, that simple. Interesting though that David was looking at an Indian Alloy tank. Would that be as a spare for when the attack comes? (And it will come)

I just filled up my MG with E0 this afternoon and will buy another can to top up the bikes on Saturday. And yes Richard, it is only the Supreme Synergy + that is E0. If they ever change the formula I hope they change the label, though I am encouraged by being told by e-mail that Esso have no intention of changing this fuel. Thank goodness.

Tesco 99 Momentum is what did the damage to my Petseal. When I checked, after the event I found the spec included 5% ethanol and 3% methanol. Quite a bit of solvent in there.

Finally I'd just like to repeat what happened with an elderly VMCC member and his flat tanker. He told me that he had no trouble with ethanol, he bought his petrol from Morrisons and just added a few drops of Millers anti ethanol. So the inevitable was slowed down. He came back from holiday a couple of years ago to tell me his tank sealant had turned to goo and there was damage on another old bike too. We live and learn and I don't want Norton owners to suffer what I did back in 2006/7.

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Previously Neil Wyatt wrote:

Quite right Richard, anyone not interested doesn't have to read the ethanol discussions, that simple. Interesting though that David was looking at an Indian Alloy tank. Would that be as a spare for when the attack comes? (And it will come)

I just filled up my MG with E0 this afternoon and will buy another can to top up the bikes on Saturday. And yes Richard, it is only the Supreme Synergy + that is E0. If they ever change the formula I hope they change the label, though I am encouraged by being told by e-mail that Esso have no intention of changing this fuel. Thank goodness.

Tesco 99 Momentum is what did the damage to my Petseal. When I checked, after the event I found the spec included 5% ethanol and 3% methanol. Quite a bit of solvent in there.

Finally I'd just like to repeat what happened with an elderly VMCC member and his flat tanker. He told me that he had no trouble with ethanol, he bought his petrol from Morrisons and just added a few drops of Millers anti ethanol. So the inevitable was slowed down. He came back from holiday a couple of years ago to tell me his tank sealant had turned to goo and there was damage on another old bike too. We live and learn and I don't want Norton owners to suffer what I did back in 2006/7.

Many thanks for that. Oddly enough when I first visited the garage where I eventually bought the Esso Supreme Plus, thinking that I would clarify the issue there and then, I asked the attendant who didn't know anything about the Ethanol issue, whether Esso tankers delivered the fuel. His reply was that it was delivered by another company which I think was called Wains and Esso themselves later told me when I queried this that their fuel is distributed by independent carriers. Just another little mystery to add into the mix.

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I have now received contradictory information from Esso regarding garages which supply Ethanol free unleaded petrol. I was led to believe by one member of their customer services team that Esso Supreme Plus was Ethanol free. I am now informed by email that some Esso Supreme Plus may contain Ethanol and the nearest Esso garage selling this fuel is an hours drive away in Stoke on Trent. I have replied asking for further clarification.

This is part of their email dated 4.11.16

The majority of unleaded 95 Octane petrol sold in the UK contains up to 5% ethanol as required under the Governmentâs Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation (RTFO).There is currently no requirement for renewable fuel (such as ethanol) to be present in super unleaded (97 octane grade petrol).Due to this, Esso super unleaded petrol (Synergy Supreme+ Unleaded 97) is ethanol free in most areas. However in certain regions our UL97 fuels may contain ethanol up to a maximum of 5%.

The closest sites available within our network supplying ethanol free super unleaded 97 (E0) may be found around the Birmingham area. Please find below a service station where you can purchase ethanol free super unleaded 97:

TESCO HARTSHILL EXPRESS

HARTSHILL ROAD

ST4 7NH, STOKE-ON TRENT

All rather ambiguous

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Thanks for your update, Richard. Not talking about it will not resolve the situation so thanks for commenting. But the suggestion of E0 petrol @ Tesco or should I say a Tesco Express under the Esso brand is most certainly wrong. At least these places have the stuff marked up as EN228.

The email I have says Supreme + 97 RON is E0 except in the South West, Teesside area and Scotland. And they say they have no intention of adding ethanol in the E free zones. Strange they should suggest no requirement for 97 grade to add ethanol, this appears out of date as government struggle to meet their renewable targets and that includes burning more biomass at Drax. Burning more ethanol too BTW due to a reduced mpg...Clever! BP Ultimate went E5 during the Summer.

Politicians are catching up on reality, they are looking at curbing diesel fumes but also due to the damage and ill effects, replacing ethanol with less damaging butanol! Not hygroscopic and almost as efficient as pure petrol. Not certain yet if this attacks materials but have to make it cost efficient. Still, at least it wouldn't need to be taken to the distribution point in a sealed tanker.

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I only use EO fuel since standard fuel dissolved the tank liners on two of my bikes and the filler pipe of the wifes Merc. I also put a piece of tape (any sort) on the breather hole of the tank caps of my bikes. Not sure if this is a safe practise (sealed cans are not allowed on Manx ferry!) .I allow the bike to settle from sloshing about before taping. I think this reduces the amount of tank breathing moist air.Probably would also seek out weak fuel tap seals. Bikes that run clean plugs also get a shot of 2 stroke now and again.

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Living in Sweden, I have a solution to the ethanol problem. We have a special fuel for lawnmovers, chainsaws etc. It has a storage life of years and contains no ethanol. You can get it as 95, 98 and 102. Not cheap, but in the quantities I use per year I can afford it. I use nothing else in the Manx and the 16H.

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Update on my Triple Tank Troubles.

The 961 tank has leaked due to .......... quote 'deformation around the fuel pump mounting'. See attachment and note all the electrics that the fuel dripped onto.

The Steel tank will cost a hefty £650 plus to bring back to life.

The melting fibreglass tank has been patched up using a £9 repair kit and this should last long enough to get it through next week's MoT.

Attachments 961-tank-fuel-leak-jpg Dommie%20Fibreglass%20Tank%20Leak.jpg
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Thanks for the pictures, Phil. £650 for a tank repair, surely there must be a better way but all the more reason to be careful of what you put in it!

Mikael, I think I mentioned it earlier about the Swedish fuel designed for gardening equipment. It is available in many UK garden equipment shops. It is indeed expensive but cheaper than say a new lawnmower engine and fuel tank. Ideal for winter storage and that goes for our Norton's too.

A year ago, Classic Bike Magazine ran an article on removing ethanol from petrol. Further research shows that a lot of petrol is actually sub standard and has it's octane is boosted only by ethanol. Take the ethanol out and you may end up with duff petrol. All this grief, just to meet renewable targets!

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Previously Neil Wyatt wrote:

Thanks for your update, Richard. Not talking about it will not resolve the situation so thanks for commenting. But the suggestion of E0 petrol @ Tesco or should I say a Tesco Express under the Esso brand is most certainly wrong. At least these places have the stuff marked up as EN228.

The email I have says Supreme + 97 RON is E0 except in the South West, Teesside area and Scotland. And they say they have no intention of adding ethanol in the E free zones. Strange they should suggest no requirement for 97 grade to add ethanol, this appears out of date as government struggle to meet their renewable targets and that includes burning more biomass at Drax. Burning more ethanol too BTW due to a reduced mpg...Clever! BP Ultimate went E5 during the Summer.

Politicians are catching up on reality, they are looking at curbing diesel fumes but also due to the damage and ill effects, replacing ethanol with less damaging butanol! Not hygroscopic and almost as efficient as pure petrol. Not certain yet if this attacks materials but have to make it cost efficient. Still, at least it wouldn't need to be taken to the distribution point in a sealed tanker.

Thank you. How recent was your email?. Their replies seem to change by the minute.

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Hi Richard. it was a couple of months ago, I can find it if you want but what encouraged me was that it said outside of the E zones they had no intention of adding ethanol.

I have 3 Esso stations selling E0 Supreme+, one 22 miles South and two 24 and 33 miles North West. Thankfully I go near all of them nearly every month so filling the car and a can works out. Not so sure about a ride up to Scotland though? But I think the big problem is when you are not riding your bike for a while, so like riding on the continent, you might get away with it.

I test my Synergy Supreme+ on some Petseal I took out of a slimline tank. It is hard again now but this stuff does not soften it.

 

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