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View Full Version : Propane powered Dixie Chopper!!


Bull
09-19-2005, 03:02 AM
Did anyone notice in one of the latest trade magazines that Dixie Chopper had a picture of a ztr with a propane tank mounted on each side of the operator. I wonder about all of the details but I also wonder about the safety and if I remember correctly as with forklifts and such the propane many times put off an odor.

topsites
09-19-2005, 03:14 AM
The propane does put off an odor, I've worked in factories where they have propane-powered forklifts but the main thing is adequate ventilation, the odor is not unpleasant and the benefits are:
Less noise... They still go brrrrr but they are much quieter.
Less heat... Yeah, a LOT less heat, somedays I really hate it when it's 90-some degrees outside and I catch a wave of engine-warmed air in my face.
Supposedly, less pollution...

Are they cheaper? Not sure, natural gas suffers from similar shortages as petrol, it's another derivative of sorts, it is harnessed in manner similar to petrol, it comes out of the earth and I am not sure if it is time-limited like petrol but I do know it only comes out in x-quantity / day.

It's a novelty, what we need is nuclear-powered ztr's much like they have nuclear-powered vessels, power it with a tiny reactor now THAT would get me excited, LOL! Hell yeah, you never run out, just watch out don't damage the core, hehehe

MBDiagMan
09-19-2005, 10:08 AM
I fully expect that it would be no big deal to convert to propane, but I just can't think of why you would want to do that. Are you thinking that this is an economy move, or if not, what do you expect to gain from switching to propane?

Currently propane here costs $1.75 per gallon, $1.65 if you buy more than 125 gallons. Regular gas here just went down to $2.41 and seems to be dropping fast. Propane prices track natural gas prices which are expected to go up 30% this Winter, so by next mowing season you would probably be looking at $2.28 or so for propane. So, that means that next year you would save $0.13 per gallon.

Now here's the kicker, propane is not as efficient as gasoline, but I don't remember the exact factor. I think that it is something like 85%. That being the case, a gallon of propane will not run the engine as long as a gallon of gas, thus making propane MORE expensive if the propane prices go up as expected.

We still haven't talked about the cost to convert and the issue of keeping fuel available for your machinery. How many places are there in your area where you can get a propane cylinder filled. Remember that we are not talking about the cylinder types used with a barbeque grill, they are motor vehicle cylinders. You will have to keep some on your trailer and probably go out of your way to fill them.

As compared to that, how many locations are there where you can buy gasoline? Around here there are almost TOO many gas stations.

Unless you have some serious reason that makes it worth the economic loss and the hassle of keeping fuel on hand, I don't think it is a viable option.

If you are wanting to save money, is it possible to buy off road gasoline in your area on which you don't pay road tax?

My $0.02,
Doc

Richard Martin
09-19-2005, 10:21 AM
You left out the best part about that Dixie. It's a single rotor rotary engine. 40 horse. They actually have 2 of them.