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UK Caravanning (uk.rec.caravanning) A forum for the discussion of caravanning undertaken by residents of the United Kingdom, whether in the UK or abroad. It encourages the interchange of views on the merits of models of caravan, makes of tow car, accessories, caravan sites, caravan clubs, and other related topics. The term caravan is to include trailer vans, motor caravans and trailer tents.

Towing with Bi-fuel car



 
 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old August 5th 03, 08:32 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Mike Draper
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 5
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car

I've got a fair bit of experience of towing with various diesel cars -
& I find that I've usually got plenty of torque to pull my 1250kg van
along. However, the company car taxation rules are starting to bite &
I'm thinking of trying a bi-fuel (petrol/LPG) car next time.

There are only a couple of marques available - Volvo & Vauxhall -
where bi-fuel is a factory option. The Volvos are a bit expensive, but
the Vauxhalls only seem to be available with a 1.8L engine.

Anyone got any experience of towing with either of these? I know that
the power from LPG's a bit down on what you get from petrol, but what
about the torque?

Mike
Remove socks before replying.

Mike
Ads
  #2 (permalink)  
Old August 5th 03, 11:29 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Paul Robson
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 72
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car

Mike Draper wrote:

Anyone got any experience of towing with either of these? I know that
the power from LPG's a bit down on what you get from petrol, but what
about the torque?


Much the same. Not massively significant though. I've a duel fuel Explorer ;
it's affordable on LPG. Having said that I'm towing a folder.
  #3 (permalink)  
Old August 6th 03, 12:03 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
DaveK
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 151
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car


"Mike Draper" wrote in message
...
I've got a fair bit of experience of towing with various diesel cars -
& I find that I've usually got plenty of torque to pull my 1250kg van
along. However, the company car taxation rules are starting to bite &
I'm thinking of trying a bi-fuel (petrol/LPG) car next time.

Check the newsgroup- lpg uk (whatever)

Seem to be more questions than answers. I'd go for hdi diesel..
DaveK,.


  #4 (permalink)  
Old August 6th 03, 12:25 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Peter Milnes
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 191
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car

As long as you do not need to use the Eurotunnel service you should be OK, but
beware, there are already rumblings in the Government that LPG is not so good as
they thought and it is soon time to re-hike the duty payable. Stick with a good
diesel car preferably one with a turbo AND intercooler. Depending on the car you
use, 1250kg behind the towbar is a bit heavy for safe towing. I did not say that
you shouldn't as you did not say what car you have. Provided the kerbweight is
more than 1300kgs you should have no trouble.

Cheers, Peter.

"Mike Draper" wrote in message
...
: I've got a fair bit of experience of towing with various diesel cars -
: & I find that I've usually got plenty of torque to pull my 1250kg van
: along. However, the company car taxation rules are starting to bite &
: I'm thinking of trying a bi-fuel (petrol/LPG) car next time.
:
: There are only a couple of marques available - Volvo & Vauxhall -
: where bi-fuel is a factory option. The Volvos are a bit expensive, but
: the Vauxhalls only seem to be available with a 1.8L engine.
:
: Anyone got any experience of towing with either of these? I know that
: the power from LPG's a bit down on what you get from petrol, but what
: about the torque?
:
: Mike
: Remove socks before replying.
:
: Mike

  #5 (permalink)  
Old August 6th 03, 10:08 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
David Thornber
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 5
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car

In article , Mike Draper
writes
There are only a couple of marques available - Volvo & Vauxhall -
where bi-fuel is a factory option. The Volvos are a bit expensive, but
the Vauxhalls only seem to be available with a 1.8L engine.

The last time I looked into the Vauxhall one, the supposed 'factory fit'
option is basically an after-fit system that they bung in at the
factory. As with most after-fit LPG conversions, they stick a donut
tank in your spare wheel well, leaving the spare wheel to eat up a huge
proportion of your luggage compartment. I'd have thought they'd have
the sense to fit, say, a half-sized petrol tank and use the remaining
space for the LPG tank, but they've chosen the 'easy' option instead.
You could dispense with the spare and carry a can of Tyre-Weld, but that
won't get you home in the event of a disastrous tyre failure.

From what I remember of the Volvo, they'd stuck the tank in the boot,
behind the back seats. The result was a serious reduction in load
space, and complete loss of the ability to fold down the back seats for
large loads. I consider that to be an even greater compromise than
using the spare wheel space.

It's been a few years since I looked into it though. They may both have
changed their designs.

One of the reasons I ruled out LPG (apart from the fact that it wasn't
available on the car I eventually chose) was range. The LPG tanks are
invariably tiny, and on a long journey, I'd wind up running using more
petrol than LPG just to avoid constant stops to fill up. Diesel is
probably a far more sensible option, especially if you can find a
suitable car with one of the new low-emissions engines that doesn't
carry the 3% Diesel tax penalty.

--
David Thornber

The 'nospam' address is a double-bluff, and any e-mail sent to it should
actually reach me. Failing that, send mail to 'dthornber at' instead.
  #6 (permalink)  
Old August 6th 03, 12:23 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Robin Dumpleton
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 27
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car

A modern dual-fuel vehicle will easily go between "relief" stops and fuel is
easy to get it just takes a little knowledge. A list of filling stations is
available from the LPGA and www.lpgmap.co.uk provides an overlay for sat
nav/Autoroute.
Given the truly horrendous MPG of most 4 x 4's dualfuel is cost affective.
The 4 x 4 's have often got their tanks underneath. Ours has 88ltrs of gas
capacity plenty for 300miles which is as far as I would want to go without a
rest

Robin

"David Thornber" wrote in message
...
In article , Mike Draper
writes
There are only a couple of marques available - Volvo & Vauxhall -
where bi-fuel is a factory option. The Volvos are a bit expensive, but
the Vauxhalls only seem to be available with a 1.8L engine.

The last time I looked into the Vauxhall one, the supposed 'factory fit'
option is basically an after-fit system that they bung in at the
factory. As with most after-fit LPG conversions, they stick a donut
tank in your spare wheel well, leaving the spare wheel to eat up a huge
proportion of your luggage compartment. I'd have thought they'd have
the sense to fit, say, a half-sized petrol tank and use the remaining
space for the LPG tank, but they've chosen the 'easy' option instead.
You could dispense with the spare and carry a can of Tyre-Weld, but that
won't get you home in the event of a disastrous tyre failure.

From what I remember of the Volvo, they'd stuck the tank in the boot,
behind the back seats. The result was a serious reduction in load
space, and complete loss of the ability to fold down the back seats for
large loads. I consider that to be an even greater compromise than
using the spare wheel space.

It's been a few years since I looked into it though. They may both have
changed their designs.

One of the reasons I ruled out LPG (apart from the fact that it wasn't
available on the car I eventually chose) was range. The LPG tanks are
invariably tiny, and on a long journey, I'd wind up running using more
petrol than LPG just to avoid constant stops to fill up. Diesel is
probably a far more sensible option, especially if you can find a
suitable car with one of the new low-emissions engines that doesn't
carry the 3% Diesel tax penalty.

--
David Thornber

The 'nospam' address is a double-bluff, and any e-mail sent to it should
actually reach me. Failing that, send mail to 'dthornber at' instead.



  #7 (permalink)  
Old August 6th 03, 09:16 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
hugh
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,616
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car

In message , DaveK
writes

"Mike Draper" wrote in message
.. .
I've got a fair bit of experience of towing with various diesel cars -
& I find that I've usually got plenty of torque to pull my 1250kg van
along. However, the company car taxation rules are starting to bite &
I'm thinking of trying a bi-fuel (petrol/LPG) car next time.

Check the newsgroup- lpg uk (whatever)

Seem to be more questions than answers. I'd go for hdi diesel..
DaveK,.


Unless you want a big engined vehicle such as a Range Rover or Jeep I
would stick with a diesel.
--
hugh
LR 4.0 litre Defender 90 on LPG.
  #8 (permalink)  
Old August 6th 03, 09:21 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
hugh
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,616
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car

In message , David Thornber
writes
In article , Mike Draper
writes
There are only a couple of marques available - Volvo & Vauxhall -
where bi-fuel is a factory option. The Volvos are a bit expensive, but
the Vauxhalls only seem to be available with a 1.8L engine.

The last time I looked into the Vauxhall one, the supposed 'factory
fit' option is basically an after-fit system that they bung in at the
factory. As with most after-fit LPG conversions, they stick a donut
tank in your spare wheel well, leaving the spare wheel to eat up a huge
proportion of your luggage compartment. I'd have thought they'd have
the sense to fit, say, a half-sized petrol tank and use the remaining
space for the LPG tank, but they've chosen the 'easy' option instead.
You could dispense with the spare and carry a can of Tyre-Weld, but
that won't get you home in the event of a disastrous tyre failure.

LPG tanks are pressure vessels hence shape is limited. Load of ********
to talk of the "easy" option.
From what I remember of the Volvo, they'd stuck the tank in the boot,
behind the back seats. The result was a serious reduction in load
space, and complete loss of the ability to fold down the back seats for
large loads. I consider that to be an even greater compromise than
using the spare wheel space.

It's been a few years since I looked into it though. They may both
have changed their designs.

One of the reasons I ruled out LPG (apart from the fact that it wasn't
available on the car I eventually chose) was range. The LPG tanks are
invariably tiny, and on a long journey, I'd wind up running using more
petrol than LPG just to avoid constant stops to fill up. Diesel is
probably a far more sensible option, especially if you can find a
suitable car with one of the new low-emissions engines that doesn't
carry the 3% Diesel tax penalty.

Tanks are not "invariably" tiny. eg a 90 litre tank (holding 72 litres
of LPG) will fit in the boot of a Vectra and still leave a fair amount
of luggage space.
--
hugh
Reply to address is valid
  #9 (permalink)  
Old August 7th 03, 06:21 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
David Thornber
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 47
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car

In message , hugh
] writes
In message , David Thornber
writes
In article , Mike Draper
writes
There are only a couple of marques available - Volvo & Vauxhall -
where bi-fuel is a factory option. The Volvos are a bit expensive, but
the Vauxhalls only seem to be available with a 1.8L engine.

The last time I looked into the Vauxhall one, the supposed 'factory
fit' option is basically an after-fit system that they bung in at the
factory. As with most after-fit LPG conversions, they stick a donut
tank in your spare wheel well, leaving the spare wheel to eat up a
huge proportion of your luggage compartment. I'd have thought they'd
have the sense to fit, say, a half-sized petrol tank and use the
remaining space for the LPG tank, but they've chosen the 'easy' option
instead. You could dispense with the spare and carry a can of
Tyre-Weld, but that won't get you home in the event of a disastrous tyre failure.

LPG tanks are pressure vessels hence shape is limited. Load of ********
to talk of the "easy" option.

I agree with what you're saying, but there are still various tank
configurations which could effectively use most of the space liberated
by fitting a smaller petrol tank. Fitting a donut tank in the spare
wheel well does not count as an elegant or sensible solution for a
supposedly 'factory duel fuel' vehicle.

From what I remember of the Volvo, they'd stuck the tank in the boot,
behind the back seats. The result was a serious reduction in load
space, and complete loss of the ability to fold down the back seats
for large loads. I consider that to be an even greater compromise
than using the spare wheel space.

It's been a few years since I looked into it though. They may both
have changed their designs.

One of the reasons I ruled out LPG (apart from the fact that it wasn't
available on the car I eventually chose) was range. The LPG tanks are
invariably tiny, and on a long journey, I'd wind up running using more
petrol than LPG just to avoid constant stops to fill up. Diesel is
probably a far more sensible option, especially if you can find a
suitable car with one of the new low-emissions engines that doesn't
carry the 3% Diesel tax penalty.

Tanks are not "invariably" tiny. eg a 90 litre tank (holding 72 litres
of LPG) will fit in the boot of a Vectra and still leave a fair amount
of luggage space.

If that's what Vauxhall are fitting now, then I stand corrected. If
they're still bunging the donut in the spare wheel well, then I'd like
to see you stuff 72 litres of LPG into one of those! We were talking
about factory conversions here, not after-fit options where the owner
can decide just how much load space will be sacrificed in favour of
range.

If you're going to invade the luggage compartment, then sooner or later
the tank(s) will make the difference between being able or unable to
carry the required payload. Not only do you have the overall reduction
of load space volume, but the decreased dimensions could mean that
certain large objects simply can't be fitted in around the tank. Using
the spare wheel well is preferable in that instance, as you could move
the spare wheel around to best accommodate the load, or even chance
leaving it behind on a particular journey and taking your chances with a
puncture. Not that I'd recommend it.

Snooping around, I found some figures on estimated range for various
tank configuration. http://www.fleetautogas.com/fsy_tank.htm.

Bearing in mind that my car struggles to break the 30mpg barrier when
running on petrol, the 25mpg figure would probably be most realistic for
me when running off LPG. Even the biggest donut on this page (and I'm
not sure that would even fit inside my spare wheel well) would barely
get me the 250 miles down to London one-way - a journey that I often
make non-stop. I have even managed to get there and back without
refuelling before now, although admittedly that wasn't with my current
car. Looking at it another way, I suppose if I could do 90% of the
journey before running out of LPG and continued for the remaining 10% on
petrol, I'd still be saving money. On the other hand, having paid for
the conversion, I think I'd feel compelled to go out of my way to run
the vehicle exclusively on LPG.

--
David Thornber
  #10 (permalink)  
Old August 7th 03, 03:34 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Robin Dumpleton
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 27
Default Towing with Bi-fuel car

If you do a lot of miles you can fill at home with even greater savings.

Robin

"David Thornber" wrote in message
...
In message , hugh
] writes
In message , David Thornber
writes
In article , Mike Draper
writes
There are only a couple of marques available - Volvo & Vauxhall -
where bi-fuel is a factory option. The Volvos are a bit expensive, but
the Vauxhalls only seem to be available with a 1.8L engine.

The last time I looked into the Vauxhall one, the supposed 'factory
fit' option is basically an after-fit system that they bung in at the
factory. As with most after-fit LPG conversions, they stick a donut
tank in your spare wheel well, leaving the spare wheel to eat up a
huge proportion of your luggage compartment. I'd have thought they'd
have the sense to fit, say, a half-sized petrol tank and use the
remaining space for the LPG tank, but they've chosen the 'easy' option
instead. You could dispense with the spare and carry a can of
Tyre-Weld, but that won't get you home in the event of a disastrous tyre

failure.

LPG tanks are pressure vessels hence shape is limited. Load of ********
to talk of the "easy" option.

I agree with what you're saying, but there are still various tank
configurations which could effectively use most of the space liberated
by fitting a smaller petrol tank. Fitting a donut tank in the spare
wheel well does not count as an elegant or sensible solution for a
supposedly 'factory duel fuel' vehicle.

From what I remember of the Volvo, they'd stuck the tank in the boot,
behind the back seats. The result was a serious reduction in load
space, and complete loss of the ability to fold down the back seats
for large loads. I consider that to be an even greater compromise
than using the spare wheel space.

It's been a few years since I looked into it though. They may both
have changed their designs.

One of the reasons I ruled out LPG (apart from the fact that it wasn't
available on the car I eventually chose) was range. The LPG tanks are
invariably tiny, and on a long journey, I'd wind up running using more
petrol than LPG just to avoid constant stops to fill up. Diesel is
probably a far more sensible option, especially if you can find a
suitable car with one of the new low-emissions engines that doesn't
carry the 3% Diesel tax penalty.

Tanks are not "invariably" tiny. eg a 90 litre tank (holding 72 litres
of LPG) will fit in the boot of a Vectra and still leave a fair amount
of luggage space.

If that's what Vauxhall are fitting now, then I stand corrected. If
they're still bunging the donut in the spare wheel well, then I'd like
to see you stuff 72 litres of LPG into one of those! We were talking
about factory conversions here, not after-fit options where the owner
can decide just how much load space will be sacrificed in favour of
range.

If you're going to invade the luggage compartment, then sooner or later
the tank(s) will make the difference between being able or unable to
carry the required payload. Not only do you have the overall reduction
of load space volume, but the decreased dimensions could mean that
certain large objects simply can't be fitted in around the tank. Using
the spare wheel well is preferable in that instance, as you could move
the spare wheel around to best accommodate the load, or even chance
leaving it behind on a particular journey and taking your chances with a
puncture. Not that I'd recommend it.

Snooping around, I found some figures on estimated range for various
tank configuration. http://www.fleetautogas.com/fsy_tank.htm.

Bearing in mind that my car struggles to break the 30mpg barrier when
running on petrol, the 25mpg figure would probably be most realistic for
me when running off LPG. Even the biggest donut on this page (and I'm
not sure that would even fit inside my spare wheel well) would barely
get me the 250 miles down to London one-way - a journey that I often
make non-stop. I have even managed to get there and back without
refuelling before now, although admittedly that wasn't with my current
car. Looking at it another way, I suppose if I could do 90% of the
journey before running out of LPG and continued for the remaining 10% on
petrol, I'd still be saving money. On the other hand, having paid for
the conversion, I think I'd feel compelled to go out of my way to run
the vehicle exclusively on LPG.

--
David Thornber



 



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