Methonol and water vs rim guard

fried1765

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Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
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I use methanol at 99.9% in the race car, for fuel. That's what it is-a motor fuel (and a solvent) and it works good for both. One major reason I don't like it for ballast is that it's flammable and you cannot see the flame in the daytime, at night you can see a faint blue flame from pure (99.5%+) methanol but during the day it is invisible. Secondly, there is pressure inside the tire which is exactly what happens inside an engine, air and fuel are pressurized before it is ignited, and when it does ignite, it expands rapidly. So basically you have sort of a bomb inside your tire. Think about that next time you drive kinda close to a burn pile, or if you drive INTO the burn pile. I've seen tractors die or stop while very close to burn pile (burns the battery cable, snags a cable, brush snags a fuel line etc) and I certainly wouldn't want methanol near a fire. Make fire bigger. And if you're standing in a puddle of it and it ignites you will burn up and never see the flame. But hey the good news is, you can put methanol fire out with water unlike gas/diesel, so in that sense and in that sense only, it's less dangerous. Yes I'm aware that it's mixed with water for ballast and that does reduce some of the tendencies for danger but it's still methanol which is a "dry" fuel, and can aid in corrosion and degradation of rims, tires, and valve stems. Old boss used to push a lot of it because it was cheap but although cheap initially, it became expensive later on when a rim was rusted prematurely or a tire basically fell apart while still in warranty. Dealer had to eat that stuff. They then switched to antifreeze/water mix and that would freeze up in cold days causing an uncontrollable tractor if driven at any speeds (like down a road). Rim guard is probably about the best for this application with all things considered.
Millions of automobiles are on the road every day, with that methanol (windshield washer fluid) hazard under the hood!
Has the EPA warned us about this?😧
 
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The Evil Twin

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L2501
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The local auto dealers are getting all hyped up about selling it to dummies. The Jeep dealer I bought from has a poster in the waiting room which always is an attention-getter... which offers to drain and refill your tires w/100% nitrogen which claims to extend tire life, improve gas mileage, and make you sexy all for only $100.
8O


The dealership service-writer had just handed that brochure and sales-pitch to the housewife sitting next to me in the waiting room …and then he walked away to get his clipboard.

The housewife was about to order that service when I asked her if she'd studied science in high-school. When she replied "YES"...I asked if she remembered how much of the atmosphere is made up of nitrogen, how much oxygen, and how much carbon-dioxide and other gases. She looked puzzled, so I reminded her that in round-numbers, 80% of the atmosphere was nitrogen and the oxygen made up most of the other 20% with a few other gases thrown in.
I then pointed out that...if the poster was correct in stating that nitrogen in tires benefit us because it has larger molecules and did not leak out as rapidly as the other gases and therefore keeps tires properly inflated better than other gases.... I asked her if the tire was already fillled with 80% nitrogen and it becomes deflated due to the other gases leaking out... and if we re-fill it with more 80% nitrogen mix... "Isn't the concentration of nitrogen automatically and quite naturally increased without paying someone $100?"
8O
8O


You should have seen and heard the scolding that woman gave the poor service-writer when he returned with his work-order to be signed by her!
I almost felt sorry for him.
:lol:
The only real benefit to N2 is that it is nearly perfectly dry. Moisture can dramatically affect tire pressure and in turn wear. That is the only reason I use it in all my vehicles. They also only see 8000 miles a year and the tires don't wear very fast. I do it myself so only cost me $17 to fill 20-25 tires. Could use CO2 also. Or even a really good dessicant/ air dryer set up on an air compressor.
 

fried1765

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Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
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Eastham, Ma
The only real benefit to N2 is that it is nearly perfectly dry. Moisture can dramatically affect tire pressure and in turn wear. That is the only reason I use it in all my vehicles. They also only see 8000 miles a year and the tires don't wear very fast. I do it myself so only cost me $17 to fill 20-25 tires. Could use CO2 also. Or even a really good dessicant/ air dryer set up on an air compressor.
I have been using "wet" air in my tires for 65 years.
Seems to be working OK.
 
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CGMKCM

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RVT-1100C, ZD323, L4760
Jan 26, 2021
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Randolph county N.C.
FWIW
In my area of N.C. methanol is added only for freeze protection. On my 4760 10 gallons of 100% methanol was added to each rear tire and topped off with water. I was told I was freeze protected to 15*.
I looked into Rim Guard and I have a dealer 60 miles away from me. No tire service places nearer to me have the pumps etc. to pump out tires filled with RG. All use Methanol. I would have to return to RG dealer to get tire repairs or replacement. For me adding wheel weights and staying with methanol was a better option.
 
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GeoHorn

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May 18, 2018
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The only real benefit to N2 is that it is nearly perfectly dry. Moisture can dramatically affect tire pressure and in turn wear. That is the only reason I use it in all my vehicles. They also only see 8000 miles a year and the tires don't wear very fast. I do it myself so only cost me $17 to fill 20-25 tires. Could use CO2 also. Or even a really good dessicant/ air dryer set up on an air compressor.
You could use a dryer/dehumidifier on your shop compressor and achieve the same result for a lot less money.
 

The Evil Twin

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L2501
Jul 19, 2022
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You could use a dryer/dehumidifier on your shop compressor and achieve the same result for a lot less money.
I did list that as an alternative. Though, for me, it's not a portable solution. Especially when I need significant volume to seat a tire.
 

jyoutz

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MX6000 HST open station, FEL, 6’ cutter, forks, 8’ rear blade, 7’ cultivator
Jan 14, 2019
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Edgewood, New Mexico
Of Course they like it better…. It has a larger profit-margin.
The dealer said that it keeps the rubber soft, instead of hard and subject to future cracking like methanol. And far easier to work with than the messy rimguard. IDK what profits are made on it. My tractor came with it as part of the purchase price. He said they won’t sell a loader tractor without bio ballast in the rear wheels as part of their business practices. His price out the door was competitive with other dealers who don’t offer this. They also weld bucket hooks to the bucket for every tractor sold. He said the bio ballast drains like water, but is non toxic or corrosive, so it’s easy to repair tires.
 

fried1765

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Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
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Eastham, Ma
The dealer said that it keeps the rubber soft, instead of hard and subject to future cracking like methanol. And far easier to work with than the messy rimguard. IDK what profits are made on it. My tractor came with it as part of the purchase price. He said they won’t sell a loader tractor without bio ballast in the rear wheels as part of their business practices. His price out the door was competitive with other dealers who don’t offer this. They also weld bucket hooks to the bucket for every tractor sold. He said the bio ballast drains like water, but is non toxic or corrosive, so it’s easy to repair tires.
Dealer said:..... "subject to future cracking like methanol".
Is the "dealer" suggesting that my methanol filled rubber tubes are "subject to cracking"?
 

jyoutz

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MX6000 HST open station, FEL, 6’ cutter, forks, 8’ rear blade, 7’ cultivator
Jan 14, 2019
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Edgewood, New Mexico
Dealer said:..... "subject to future cracking like methanol".
Is the "dealer" suggesting that my methanol filled rubber tubes are "subject to cracking"?
He said that over time, it hardens the rubber. Not that it happens right away. Bio ballast is actually designed to keep the rubber soft.
 

GreensvilleJay

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BX23-S
Apr 2, 2019
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re: He said they won’t sell a loader tractor without bio ballast in the rear wheels as part of their business practices.

If the dealer here had said that, I would not have bought from him, then asked Kubota Canada if that was their policy, if so, then I'd not have bought Kubota.
 
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fried1765

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Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
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Eastham, Ma
He said that over time, it hardens the rubber. Not that it happens right away. Bio ballast is actually designed to keep the rubber soft.
I don't think I have ever seen a tube that was hardened while inside a tire.
 

ruger1980

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L4310 w/La682, L225
Oct 25, 2020
298
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CNY
Millions of automobiles are on the road every day, with that methanol (windshield washer fluid) hazard under the hood!
Has the EPA warned us about this?😧
One of my coworkers was killed when he accidently cut into a partially full drum of windshield washer fluid with a cutting torch.
So it is flammable and very dangerous. Firestone explicitly calls out not to use alcohol based ballast in their tires for this reason.
 
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fried1765

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Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
2,615
1,807
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Eastham, Ma
One of my coworkers was killed when he accidently cut into a partially full drum of windshield washer fluid with a cutting torch.
So it is flammable and very dangerous. Firestone explicitly calls out not to use alcohol based ballast in their tires for this reason.
"Accidentally"?
 

ruger1980

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L4310 w/La682, L225
Oct 25, 2020
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"Accidentally"?
He was using barrels as a sort of table or saw horse setup cutting 1/2x6 bar stock. The flame got close to the blue poly barrel and melted through. The barrel was not clearly labeled so he was not aware of the danger he had placed himself in. I am pretty sure he not do it with intent.