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Random Thoughts

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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby Carl Spackler » Tue Apr 11, 2017 9:01 pm

For those with any small equipment powered by gasoline engines, beware.

Small-Engines vs. Ethanol Regs
Thomas Gallatin · Apr. 11, 2017

As spring begins to spur lawns and trees into full grow mode, many folks find themselves heading into the garage or shed to crank up the old mower and weed whacker that have been sitting dormant since last fall. After the seemingly hundredth pull on the starter cord with not even the slightest sputter of engine life, a frustrated individual may wonder if the culprit is ethanol.
Ethanol has been around for quite some time. But especially since the passage of the Renewable Fuel Standards in 2007, the debate over the benefits or drawbacks of ethanol-infused gasoline continues, and nowhere does it rage more than within the world of small-engine equipment. Kris Kiser, the president and CEO of the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute, is no fan of the supposed enviro-friendly regulation. Kiser says, “You’re putting alcohol into the fuel. They’re different atoms. They don’t like to stay married.” He continues, “This is a big deal, and everybody wants to downplay it. But we’re pretty sensitive to it.”
And while proponents of the ethanol blends point to the fact that manufactures are developing engines better suited to handle the higher percentages of ethanol, the truth remains that ethanol negatively impacts gasoline engines. Anyone who has recently bought a small engine can attest to the fact that most warranties are voided if a higher-than-10% ethanol blend of gasoline is used.
The ethanol fuel standards are a classic example of government-forced industry adjustment aimed at artificially propping up an industry that would otherwise cease to exist if not for the mandate. Not only are ethanol blends consistently less fuel efficient, they also heavily impact other aspects of the economy, such as food prices. When the government attempts to pick winners and losers, the result is more losers. Let’s revoke the ethanol regulations and allow the free market to determine if the industry thrives or dies.

“Frankly I’m tired of carburetor rebuilds and replacements due to ethanol destroying diaphragms and other sensitive parts never intended for ethanol and the corrosion it causes in the engine. Small engine makers must be doing cart wheels as the parts sales, the most lucrative part of their business has to be thriving.”
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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby Blue&White » Tue Apr 11, 2017 9:10 pm

This is the reason I run my generator and tractor for about 20 minutes every few weeks. I use gas stabilizer but no way I'm just letting it sit for 6 cold months. That's just begging for trouble.
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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby psu_dad » Tue Apr 11, 2017 10:55 pm

As spring begins to spur lawns and trees into full grow mode, many folks find themselves heading into the garage or shed to crank up the old mower and weed whacker that have been sitting dormant since last fall. After the seemingly hundredth pull on the starter cord with not even the slightest sputter of engine life, a frustrated individual may wonder if the culprit is ethanol.

Yes, it probably is. Gas with ethanol only has a shelf life of about 3 months. Stabilizer will extend that to a year or two (depending on who you believe) but not indefinitely. I mostly use gas around the house for my snowblower, but any gas left in the can when snow season ends gets dumped into my car just to be safe.
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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby LioninVa » Tue Apr 18, 2017 3:59 pm

So, the so called facebook killer was located, chased, and ultimately committed suicide in Erie this morning. Having grown up right where this happened, my immediate though was that it doesn't bode well for my hometown that a killer from Cleveland heads to Erie and kills himself. Then a friend commented that he hasn't seen the Erie news folks this mobilized since the pizza bomber bank heist, maybe 12-15 years ago and I thought that maybe being a sleepy little town isn't so bad.
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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby reincarnatedlama » Wed Apr 19, 2017 8:29 am

Full story is he pulled in to a McD's for nuggets and fries and drive through worker recognized him and called police - the McD's workers tried to delay him by telling him fries would take another minute and by time he pulled out of parking lots cops were on his tail. After a short chase he killed himself.

Is it me or is there a very ugly side to social media / humanity - seeing more and more people committing extremely violent / hateful acts (beyond just trash talking type stuff) and the obsessive need of some people who need to run to social media and have a pity party whenever they receive the slightest bit of negative feedback or criticism.

Has social media created a society of attention needy, insecure, self absorbed narcissists or did they always exist and technology has simply provided them a platform to put it on worldwide display.
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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby PittGradPSUMad » Wed Apr 19, 2017 8:52 am

psu_dad wrote:As spring begins to spur lawns and trees into full grow mode, many folks find themselves heading into the garage or shed to crank up the old mower and weed whacker that have been sitting dormant since last fall. After the seemingly hundredth pull on the starter cord with not even the slightest sputter of engine life, a frustrated individual may wonder if the culprit is ethanol.

Yes, it probably is. Gas with ethanol only has a shelf life of about 3 months. Stabilizer will extend that to a year or two (depending on who you believe) but not indefinitely. I mostly use gas around the house for my snowblower, but any gas left in the can when snow season ends gets dumped into my car just to be safe.


And yet the old Toro mower that I inherited from the previous homeowner starts on the first pull despite my forgetting to drain the gas tank last fall. I abuse that mower, and it keeps on keeping on.
Yeah, well...you know...that's just like, uh, your opinion, man.
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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby Nat@PSU » Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:00 am

reincarnatedlama wrote:Has social media created a society of attention needy, insecure, self absorbed narcissists or did they always exist and technology has simply provided them a platform to put it on worldwide display.



Honestly, I think it is the latter of the two. As a teacher, I see kids who are in many ways no different than the kids I went to High School with. Same demographics, same cliched groups, etc. But social media, technology, etc, has really exacerbated the types of self centered and self serving behaviors that can develop in kids and young adults. I look at the growth of mental health issues (i.e. depression, anxiety, . . . ) in our student population and can't help but think of how true it is that we are the most connected society every and simultaneously we have the least sense of community through actual person to person interaction.

I base all of this on anecdotal evidence and not really any substantial research but that's my general opinion.
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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby LioninVa » Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:13 am

I think that Nat is onto something. While the ease in 'getting yourself out there and/or noticed' comes from these devices on the internet, for some reason it makes people think that their choices are important to all of us. I mean, we have these pseudo-celebrities who are famous simply for being famous (Kardashians, Milo...) who really have little experience and less to contribute. But because they get so many likes or retweets, they become relevant. Get an effing job and put in a hard days work, then tell me what you think. Maybe I will care, but probably not.

So, I guess to answer Llama's question, I have to think that the platform of instant contact and social media has played right into the hands of otherwise insignificant needy people. On the flip side, that same connectivity may have allowed for the worker at McD's to recognize the killer, so it isn't all negative.
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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby Blue&White » Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:45 am

Social media really sucks. When I was 15, if my friends went out and ditched me, I could only imagine what was going on. Today, you know instantly because they post pictures on instagram. I watch my kids go through this and it's tough.
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Re: Random Thoughts

Postby Carl Spackler » Wed Apr 19, 2017 12:34 pm

I visit Facebook occasionally to pics of the grandkids as that is the only place our daughter will put them and all I really see beyond the pics are a bunch of self absorbed attention fixated people who demand you reply to their plaintive posts for attention or they won't like you any more. It's sure is sad to see so many self absorbed people but it gets to the problems in society in general if this represents the populace. Too many needy people seeking attention, eventually acting out or doing other mayhem to get their attention fix. We watched our grandson pull this crap for a a day and then assisted our daughter in helping him grow up a bit and learn some self control. Hoping it lasts and she and the SIL continue the direction of his little soul that easily gets out of hand. If they don't they will have a far larger problem later on in life. We all know people who need to get a reality check and that soon too. Too much self love and not enough appreciation for what you have in this great nation and what you really have in life which is very privileged if you take a look at the worlds treatment of their citizens. We have it great and far greater than most.
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