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Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

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  • Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

    Hey y'all how ya doing?

    I've been driving my '91 Explorer bi-fuel for about 5 years now and am about to upgrade my '06 Ram 2500 to be a bi-fuel. I'm pretty mechanically inclined and am going to attempt it myself. I'm sure I'll find lots of good "builds", info and tips around the forum.

    Feel free to chime in...I'm planning to take as many of the parts from my functioning '91 explorer 4.0 6 cylinder and put them on my '06 Dodge Ram 2500 5.7 Hemi.

    I'm pretty sure I'll be needing a new regulator? and of course run new gas lines from my tanks to the regulator, etc.

    Any url links that y'all think might help me?

  • #2
    Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

    Body4Change, welcome to rhe group. Please let me start out by letting you know that what you are trying to do is both a violation of EPA regulations, as well as dangerous.

    Unless you are installing an EPA certified conversion kit onto your Dodge Ram, one that can properly control the vehicles computers and emissions equipment, and have an EPA certification sticker under the hood, you will fail any State required emissions testing that you attempt.

    Secondly, unless you have specific training on how to work on a sealed high pressure fuel system, we could well end up hearing about your efforts on the 11:00 news. 3600 psi, when released unintentionally can literally kill you. Please do not attempt to try this at home.

    No one on this site (that is legitimate and trained on cng systems) will assist you in this effort, if for no other reason than the legal liability of offering you assistance. I would urge you to SERIOUSLY reconsider your plan and purchase a vehicle that has legally been set up to run on cng, or bi-fuel, whichever suits your needs.

    There are lots of trucks on the market that are available that are already converted, both new and used. There is no EPA/CARB approved kits available for your vehicle that I am aware of.
    Best of luck.


    • #3
      Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

      There is a definate vested interest bias on this blog. There is no correlation with certification (and questionable training resources) to safety. Use the correct materials, parts, and tools and you will be fine.

      Personally, I have no problem with the (foreign) kits, if they are appropriately designed and proven. I would love to see discussions that compare the relative strengths and weaknesses of each of the systems currently available, and less about whether EPA has approved them or not. I personally have had too much experience with EPA bureaucrats to give them more credit than they deserve on real cutting edge issues.

      IMHO, we should spend more time training our own to be safe and less trying to beat our own drums. We need to establish a reasonable safety standard. I dont trust the epa/govt agencies to do any of this constructively- just look how the vested parties have screwed up the global warming issues and destroyed real science in the process. Politicians have little interest in truth anymore, it seems; it's all about dollars and ideologies.
      Last edited by rtry9a; 01-25-2010, 09:01 AM.


      • #4
        Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

        Originally posted by rtry9a View Post
        Personally, I have no problem with the (foreign) kits, if they are appropriately designed and proven.
        There in lies the problem. The "foreign kits" that you mention are not CERTIFIED for use in the US. I'm not talking about EPA. I'm talking about NFPA 52, ANSI NGV2, DOT FMVSS 304, ANSI NGV3.1, ANSI PRD-1.

        Most foreign tanks are not NGV2 nor DOT FMVSS 304 certified, they are ISO 11439 certified, but DOT FMVSS 304 is the legal certification for the US.

        I would bet that most foreign valves are not NGV3.1 certified and most foreign PRDs are not PRD-1 certified. And according to NGV2 and DOT FMVSS 304, these valves and PRDs must be approved by the tank manufacturer.

        The main document that wraps it all up is NFPA 52. This is the installation document. NFPA 52 mandates the use of approved (certified) components. Most US kit manufacturers (Baytech, BAF, Fueltek, etc.) provide extensive training to their approved (certified) installers to be able to purchase and install their equipment. And tank manufacturers follow the same guidelines.

        Now, I'm not saying that foreign kits are junk, but where is the specialized training and mandates for use of approved (certified) components? There in lies the safety of the CNG fuel system.
        Mountain Green, Utah
        2003 CNG Cavalier
        2003 CNG Silverado 2500HD


        • #5
          Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

          I appreciate your notes, but My problem is the certification process! In the US, the process is not driven by reason, its driven by vested interests through bribes and collusion to and power-hungry politicians and the agencies who excel at placing legal hurdles, hurdles that dont often make a lot of sense other than to block access to our markets, keep prices excessively high, and usership low.

          Reason tells me that opening up reasonable conversion kit pricing and improving availability to all vehicles would greatly increase your overall business volume. The current system needlessly chokes expansion off, and will soon kill off public availability to used cng vehicles and access to replacement parts completely- the big blow to the industry will start in 2012 when all of our tanks will needlessly expire without a reasonable replacement source. If we want to drive cng vehicles, it will only be in busses, dump, and garbage trucks if you follow path laid out by the stupid epa rules.

          FWIW, I dont see a lot of problems overseas where there are infinitely more natural gas consumers, users who apparently are doing just fine and not blowing themselves up in the process.

          The US govt says one thing while they block all progress on the conversion front, thereby keeping us liplocked to the foreign oil teat.
          Last edited by rtry9a; 01-25-2010, 12:52 PM.


          • #6
            Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

            Originally posted by rtry9a View Post
            I appreciate your notes, but My problem is the certification process!
            The certification process for NGV2, NGV3.1, and PRD-1 is NOT the same certification process as the kits go through with the EPA.

            NGV2 for example:

            Once you complete all the required tests (i.e. burst tests, cycle tests, gunfire, bonfire, etc.) through a licensed DOT 3rd party inspection agency and provide all the required quality control documents, you can begin fabrication and selling of NGV2 and DOT FMVSS 304 certified tanks. The certification process is only approx. $50k. The certification lasts a lifetime (the tanks themselves have a service life of 15, 20 or 25 years), but the certification does not. Also, if you want to change the design (say longer length or something) then only a few tests are required and you're off and running.

            Maybe you can elaborate on why you think the certification process is the problem.
            Mountain Green, Utah
            2003 CNG Cavalier
            2003 CNG Silverado 2500HD


            • #7
              Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

              I to feel it is one way here or the HIWAY.
              For the NFPA 52 mandates the use of approved (certified) components.
              I think you need to read it your self about 4 times to know what it says I did.

              4.9.1 page 52-13
              Valves,valve packing and gaskets shall be designed or selected for the fuel over the full range of pressures and tempperatures to which they can be subjected under normal operating conditions. X 3 rating.

              It says if designed for the use and follows spec. it can be used.
              The word Exception is used through out this book.

              For people to say (foreign) kits or unsafe they have been doing this a lot longer than the USA has.

              Bob Mann


              • #8
                Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

                "Maybe you can elaborate on why you think the certification process is the problem."

                I for one have no doubt that a kit for sale in the European Union would be safe to use. The certification process is surely different but I have no doubt it is safe. I'm also sure kits certified for sale in the US are also safe. I believe it is the lack of any reciprocity between various certifications around the world that is the problem.

                More often than not, lack of reciprocity for these types of certifications is based on economic protectionism. In other words it is a form of non-tariff trade barrier that masquerades as a safety requirement.
                Last edited by Adrian; 01-25-2010, 05:33 PM.

                Navy 2008 Civic GX (wife's)
                Silver 2012 Toyota Prius
                Grey 2012 Civic Natural Gas (mine)


                • #9
                  Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

                  You make a good point Adrian. Well put. I've always felt that the ability to cross borders with respect to standards makes no sense. European standards are probably equal to, if not superior to, American standards in most regards.

                  The problem is... how do you crack that nut?

                  As far as a vested interest biased on this site; there have to be rules. Whether we like them or not is not the issue. If we don't like the rules, we work as a team of 7,000+ to get them changed, as we have in several notably instances. We are the foundation of a powerful lobby, a grass-roots catalyst.

                  There are doers and whiners in the world. Which shall we choose to be? Do we whine about laws that make no sense in a world ripe for change? Or do we whine about the way things are and disregard the rules and go our own way?

                  There are sites out there that are all for disregarding the rules and regulations. I neither condemn, nor recommend them, that's personal choice. Those of us that created this site have chosen to take the high road and play within the rules... as well as change them when we can.

                  The true power of this group is that there is strength in numbers, and our numbers grow daily. How many does it take to spark a change? The answer is ONE! When we have the numbers to genuinely create change, as we do here, the question is; what are you going to do with it?

                  A good example is member Thomas Stoflet, who is currently trying to do battle with the CPUC and CE in relationship to the impending rate change that CE is trying to force (in their favor as always). Follow the thread here:
                  How many of the PG&E customers on this site, or other interested parties have rallied behind his battle cry after 1,700+ views? Pathetically few would be the correct answer. I applaud those who have contributed their time and efforts to helping him on all our behalves.

                  So, as a member of the cng community, are you going to chose to be a doer and help us help you make a difference? Or do you chose to disregard the rules of law that govern us and hang out at someone else's website?


                  • #10
                    Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

                    Adrain and Curtis have the crux of the problem; no correlation between ANSI NGV2 and ISO (or other EQUIPMENT COMPONENT) standards. If we could get copies of the testing procedures minimum qualification criteria I would work with a GROUP on trying to run a comparative correlation. We would also need some qualified engineers on the the project.

                    I heard several years back that there was group trying to accomplish the task. AFV man, do you remember any such comments?, I think you were there at the time. IANGV or NGVC??

                    Getting old



                    • #11
                      Re: Utah CNGer, Been Using 5 years, new to Forum

                      Good points all... Rules often grow from specifications when coupled with political pressure and money; specifications are often written by vendors with the objective to promote their particular product and exclude others, which may be every bit as good, and possibly better or cheaper.

                      You can also add the common practice in govt that involves the adoption of rules from other sources, rules commonly conceived for purposes other than the one at hand. Very common problem with Mil Specs. The result is run away rules that unnecessarily restrict other reasonable applications. For example, I see no need to triple design parameters when available pressures are capped. In aerospace, 115 to125% is common, as is 150% elsewhere in industry.

                      Id be quite happy with a simple rule: use materials for the pressure and chemical compatibility with a 50% safety margin. Tell us what tubes and fittings to use for 4000 psi, 100 psi, 5 psi that we normally see. Add a leak testing procedure and we are ready to roll. All else is unnecessary. PS... high pressure gas is not something to take lightly, but the fact is, gasoline is a lot more dangerous than natural gas is in many respects. This is not rocket science folks.

                      Back to my original note, Id like to have a data source available which could compare parts- what is the best regulator, tank, valves, electronic controls, software available, what are the strengths / weaknesses of each kit/system. When we have data to compare and the ability to chose independent of vehicle and epa certifications, the market will drive quality thru competition and the industry will grow naturally when it has something valuable to offer consumers. The current system is rigged and susceptible to corruption and deep pocket dominance, and therefore doomed to eventual failure.
                      Last edited by rtry9a; 01-26-2010, 11:10 AM.