CNG conversion

Discussion in '80-Series Tech' started by livelarg, May 25, 2013.

  1. livelarg

    livelarg

    Messages:
    226
    Location:
    OKLAHOMA cITY
    Howdy all.

    I am in the very starting phases of doing a cng conversion on my 96' cruiser. when I say starting phase, i mean I am searching google to figure out how to do it.

    I would like to start a write up on hoe to do this for anyone else that would like it too.

    So this is what I am looking for:

    1. Any info on parts needed
    2. any source for said parts
    3. if you have done a conversion to an 80, or any other cars, your opinion of the conversion
    4. any info to help this get done.

    NOT, a long discussion on the pro/cons or stupidity of even trying this. I know the tanks are big and can be a mounting/weight issue. And yes, it is not always easy to tind fill up places, and home fill-up kits are slow and expensive.

    Not trying to be a jerk, just want the discussion to focus on information for those that want to do it.

    thanks
    Kent
  2. greentruck

    greentruck

    Messages:
    3,513
    Location:
    flat earth Midwest
    The Australians do this a lot with their LandCruisers. Look Down Under in your searches and plenty should come up.
  3. george_tlc

    george_tlc SILVER Star

    Messages:
    1,805
    Location:
    Sunnyvale, CA
    Just a detail, but we primarily run LPG in oz, not CNG.

    There is a huge LPG filling infrastructure over there - MANY petrol stations have LPG dispensing equipment.

    cheers,
    george.
  4. Funner

    Funner SILVER Star

    Messages:
    1,134
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    I would love to be able to run both LPG and petrol. Looking forward to this development.
    :popcorn:
  5. landtoy80

    landtoy80

    Messages:
    4,948
    Location:
    West Slope Colorado
    I looked into doing the conversion passed due to no CNG station in area. Unless you have a CNG station near you the cost and maintenance of a home fueling station is about cost ineffective. It also takes about 10 +/- hrs to fill. Now that there is a station in my area I am considering the conversion again.

    Tanks should fit in the tire carrier area. I see the new CNG/LNG buses have the tanks on the roof. Not sure how that would work on the 80 but it would be safer on the roof as CNG is lighter than air and if there is a leak it goes up into the atmosphere. With the tank under the vehicle in tire carrier area, you would probably want to seal the cargo area so that if there is a leak, it doesn't leak into the vehicle and go boom.

    You should get on several CNG forums as they can be source for parts, kits new and used. They can be a wealth of info.

    For a used tank, look into used forklift tanks.

    There are EPA approved and unapproved kits. Of course the approved ones are more $$$ and most of them are only sold to approved installers, more $$$. There are DIY kits but they were not street legal when I looked into them.

    Utah is the king of CNG as they have stations everywhere and it dirt cheap per state regulations. Used parts and installers should be found there more than anywhere else.

    Fueling stations and prices. http://www.cngprices.com/station_map.php I see OK has great prices and plenty of stations.
    Last edited: May 25, 2013
  6. scotia

    scotia

    Messages:
    496
    Location:
    Houston Tx
    Not sure what part of the country you are in but friend here in Houston area is doing DOT kits for CNG. They are really not that complicated and have seen them a Taco, Ford Raptor and Ford 6.3 diesel.
    You can fill them locally in a nearby station for about $1 gallon or at home. If you have gas at your home...cost about $65 a gallon.
    Now this is for a dual fuel system. Switches back over to gasoline or diesel when the CNG has been consumed.
    The Ford Raptor has like a 750 mile range with NO loss in power.
    If.interested, PM me and I will give you his info.
  7. Riad

    Riad SILVER Star

    Messages:
    1,827
    Location:
    Charles Town, WV
    Doesn't each state has different inspection (emission and state) regulations for this which makes this legal and/or illegal or partially legal (i.e. for firm use and etc)? Which is stupid but I guess all for the sake of safety :hillbilly:. I have seen some scary configurations in 3rd world countries, like LPG tanks are mounted right under the seats or behind the seats, literally :eek:.
  8. greentruck

    greentruck

    Messages:
    3,513
    Location:
    flat earth Midwest
    George,
    Yeah, LPG was what I was referring to, but I guess CNG is sumtin' different :hillbilly::confused::hmm:???
  9. 86tuning

    86tuning

    Messages:
    2,558
    Location:
    Vancouver BC
    LPG is liquified propane gas. It is under pressure at about 150psi in a steel tank. Pressure stays at that pressure until its all used up. Tanks are basically oversized BBQ tanks with special valves for filling. They need to be installed at the proper level and not upside down, there has to be a spit valve at the 80% height so that the tank isn't overfilled with liquid.

    CNG is compressed natural gas and is under extreme pressure because it doesn't liquefy under pressure. The tanks sit around 2000psi and the pressure decreases as the bottle is used up. These bottles are basically the same bottles used for welding gases and stuff. Much more expensive tanks as they're holding higher pressures.
  10. greentruck

    greentruck

    Messages:
    3,513
    Location:
    flat earth Midwest
    Brian,
    Gotcha. Thanks!:beer:
  11. MikePL

    MikePL

    Messages:
    764
    Location:
    Warsaw, Poland
    Definitely if you have a choice, go for LPG and not CNG. Over here almost every gasoline vehicle runs on LPG and almost every gas station has it. The vehicle maintenance costs are reduced by around 30-45% depending on vehicle.

    CNG is said to be even cheaper because this type of gas is cheaper, but the equipment costs are higher mainly because of the extremely high pressure of CNG. The weight of a CNG tank is also much much higher than LPG tank.

    The 1FZ-FE engine runs well on LPG/CNG. It's a forklift engine after all :)

  12. george_tlc

    george_tlc SILVER Star

    Messages:
    1,805
    Location:
    Sunnyvale, CA
    You got it pretty close to correct.

    It's actually Liquified Petroleum Gas. The exact 'makeup' of the 'Petroleum' part depends on where you are. In some places it is mainly Propane, in some it's a Propane/Butane mix with possible a few other things mixed in for good luck.

    So LPG 'may' be the same as Liquified Propane, depends where you are...

    Just a technicality and I'm sure the real experts know even more subtle details.


    cheers,
    george.
  13. tomcat

    tomcat

    Messages:
    64
    Location:
    Melbourne
    I put my car on LPG when i first got it, the spare Tyre comes out and the tank goes in there. we have LPG at all station to fill up so it make life easy.. cost is all most half too run. i see some times kits on ebay second hand, you just need to get them to post to the US.
  14. scotia

    scotia

    Messages:
    496
    Location:
    Houston Tx
    Meant 65 cents a gallon....not dollars. And CNG is high pressure. Lpg gives you poor mileage. CNG is the same as gasoline for mileage. Carbon fiber tanks are ultra light but costly. If you drive a lot, well worth it.
  15. livelarg

    livelarg

    Messages:
    226
    Location:
    OKLAHOMA cITY
    LPG may be a great gas, but here in oklahoma, there are no LPG stations for vehicle fill. That's why this thread is about CNG conversion.
    So any more great info on how to accomplish the CNG conversion?
  16. Golgo13

    Golgo13 SILVER Star

    Messages:
    272
    Location:
    Ann Arbor, MI
    I've been stalking around on this forum for about 2 years now.
    I actually bought a '92 with the 3F-E because of this forum.
    Shortly after I bought the truck I started making a list of all the stuff I want to do to it... One of those things is a CNG conversion.The others, well, they're taking some time.

    I work for "Mr. T" and from talking to some of the guys there I was able to find out that there is already an LPG ready 1FZ available. You just have to know where to look. Apparently they use this engine for a serious Fork Lift. If you do some poking around on Google you'll find some info about Toyota Industries and their seemingly strange line of products.

    A quick visit to www.ToyotaForklift.com and you can find a dealer who may have access to the parts one would need for an LPG conversion.

    Enough on that, livlarg is asking about CNG...

    I've tried to dig up information on this too and can't seem to find anything definitive. There are a lot of sites, including cngnow.com, which talk a lot about the benefits and how there is equipment available, but it doesn't have good links to tell you where to buy a system or kit or anything.

    I believe each state has their own regulations on this sort of thing. Since you are basically installing a bomb in your rig, most states try to "certify"systems for legal, on-road use.

    I know there is a company in Plymouth,MI called EMER (www.emer.it)who specializes in just this sort of thing. They even have ECUs available to go with it.
    www.VenchursCNG.com is another company which specializes in fleet conversions out of Adrian, MI.

    Unfortunately, since most of my time is spent making sure everyone else's Toyota lasts as long as my LC has, I haven't had much time to dig any deeper.

    Good luck with your search! I'll keep up my research and post here again if I find anything of real use.
  17. Howard705

    Howard705 TLCA 5505

    Messages:
    430
    Location:
    Central Illinois
    CNG in many ways more safe than gasoline in vehicle-Heavy protection installed over valve. Tube installed over valve for tanks in passenger compartment vented to outside. Super heavy duty tanks that a 9mm won't penetrate (in 90s was filled to 3000psi.-depends on tank construction/filling pressure) All high pressure stainless steel lines/fittings. Such high pressure that can't light major leak at point it leaks (like lighting torch turned up too high). Higher flash point. Tighter fuel/air ratio to ignite. VS-gasoline in sheet metal tank that almost anything cam poke through, gasoline accumulates on ground and pools as liquid when leaked. CNG lighter than air dissipates up.
  18. itbrokeagain

    itbrokeagain SILVER Star

    Messages:
    963
    Location:
    Amelia (east of cincy) ohio
    Any idea what cost is from start to finish?

    Edit: Just looked. Closest station is 90 miles away and prices range from $1.94 to $5 per gge.
  19. Howard705

    Howard705 TLCA 5505

    Messages:
    430
    Location:
    Central Illinois
    May be able to find home fueling compressor cheap-someone giving up on it, sold car, too much trouble, surplus, etc. Get your best value on vehicle that runs through a lot of fuel (that's covered) on a regular basis but always stays within range of it's fueling station. Good for vehicles like cop cars, post office, delivery ,etc. Octane is WAY high-120-130?. Slight loss of mileage with lower compression dual fuel vehicle but if compression raised, mapped, etc ("optimized") more power and mileage, but can't gun gasoline anymore if changed too far.
  20. landtoy80

    landtoy80

    Messages:
    4,948
    Location:
    West Slope Colorado
    Home fueling stations require costly maintenance and certain number of hours. So if you find a used home fueling station, make sure you dont pay top dollar and then have to pay top dollar again to get it serviced.

    There is liquid natural gas LNG, its what commercial trucks and buses use.

    The cost of an approved and installed system is $11,000 and up from what I found.
    Sounds like a lot but if you drive 150+ miles a day like I use to in the 80, it pays for its self in about a year or two depending on gas prices.
    Last edited: May 26, 2013

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