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Gas Saving Gizmos & Gadgets

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Comments

  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 25,716
    thanks for entertaining my curiosity.

    zaken - your mention of smoothness is why I've never tried one of these myself. I have read (possibly just rumors) that the difference in pulleys' weight/balance could be detrimental to the life of the bearings, as well.

    '18 BMW 330xi; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 47-car history and counting!

  • texasestexases Posts: 8,813
    Now that the HHO thread is (rightfully) gone, I figure this is the best place to post this link. It describes how the FTC has required Dennis Lee to stop making any claims regarding HHO.
    They froze his assets, too
  • gagricegagrice Pahrump, NevadaPosts: 31,432
    Guys like that pitch their Ponzi schemes on church goers that have trust in man kind to be honest. Think Amway. Bottom line is man is not honest by nature.

    For a better understanding of man's deceptive nature, read Mark Twain's "What is Man".
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Your link dates back to 2006 - not much breaking news about this latest home built scam kit is there?

    This Turkish homemade student kit gets amazing mpg. Of course it's also cost $170,000, so far. :shades: (popsci.com)
  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    Here's another one for you skeptics and iconoclasts: There is now a gadget called the FD-47 Fuel Doctor; which is being sold online, and also in the Heartland America catalog. It plugs into the cigarette lighter socket; and claims to increase engine and transmission efficiency and fuel economy 15-25% by "improving firing and reducing friction" through electronically filtering and regulating current in the car's electrical system. Their website states that the use of this product "will reduce your car's toxic emissions by over 1,000 pounds per year." They have a list of impressive testimonials, and they sponsor a race car (which doesn't seem to be doing well). The main product sells for $79.95; and comes with the standard FTC required 30 day money back guarantee.

    I would be interested in feedback from anyone who has ACTUALLY USED IT. Speculation and theories don't move me. And I'm not going to risk my money to see if they honor their warranty. If this thing works; lets get some credible proof; and if it is a scam; they ought to be shut down.

    www.fuel-doctor.com
  • texasestexases Posts: 8,813
    I would trust no posted comment that said it works (which it can't, there is no interaction between the 12v system and the engine managment computer). You'll either get the scammer operating under some other name to claim how well it worked for them, or some sucker who paid $80 and changed their driving habits, and can now claim it works (the placebo effect). If something can't work, why do you need proof? This thing is just like the thing you plug into your exhaust tip, claiming major benefits. Hogwash.
  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    I expect you probably are right. But there are two reasons I want proof: One is that, if this thing is a scam; I want to see these people prosecuted and the ad taken off the internet and removed from the Heartland America catalog (where it sells for $10 less, and comes with one of the "extras" that the promoter charges money for).

    The second reason I want proof is that there are too many people on this site who have been educated in science; and who as a result claim that what they have learned is absolutely infallable. Such people refuse to question their education; in light of the fact that scientific beliefs are constantly being revised and changed to account for new discoveries; and overlook the inconvenient fact that sometimes "laws of science" which used to be accepted as gospel have subsequently been overturned. When you go to the doctor; do you request that they only treat you with the original protocols which were first used to treat a condition? Many established medical treatment protocols have been invalidated or even reversed; when the original studies have been proven to be based on false premises or inaccurate observations. The ideal scientist is one who is always open to considering new information or possibilities; regardless of how unlikely they seem. The ideal lay person is one who does not treat the findings of science as if they were infallable religious beliefs which came from God; but is open to the sometimes uncomfortable possibility that what they have been believing can still be proved wrong. And the real limits of science include not only technological limitations; but also the consequences of human error and arrogance.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,148
    A few points:

    1) With no study at all, even a semi-learned person can see that this thing is a scam and will never work.
    2) Please do not confuse technological advancement with overturning "laws of science". There is (and always will be) a great divide between "learning" and/or "state of the art technology", and the "physical laws of nature" such as the "second law of thermodynamics" and the "law of conservation of energy". Those two "laws" have never changed and will most likely never-ever change regardless of how far state of the art technology is advanced. This device appears to infringe greatly on one or both of the above laws.
    3) Common sense, if something sounds too good to be true, then the odds of it being "true" are stacked hugely (as in millions or even billions to one) against it.
    4) It is often difficult to prove a negative, and in this case even if test after test after test result in a conclusion of zero efficacy, it is unlikely that its advocates will admit that it doesn't work. That said, I'll lay odds and cash money that no verifiable scientific test will ever show this device is anything other than a scam.

    Best regards,
    Shipo
  • texasestexases Posts: 8,813
    In addition to Shipo's excellent comments, the only tests I will believe are documented 3rd-party tests, such as by the EPA or periodicals such as Popular Mechanics. I have reviewed all I can find, and have found none, zero, nada reviews of any add-ons that improved milage. So, for this to be the first such device to ever work, I will required a very high level of proof. Not a comment from a satisfied user, heartfelt as it may be. I will need a documented test by an independent and authoritative source.
  • oregonboyoregonboy Posts: 1,653
    If one of these third-party, fuel saving devices actually worked to the tune of 10-20% savings (or more), it would be big news... REALLY BIG NEWS. It would be documented by respected publications and reported by all the major news outlets.

    The inventor would undoubtedly negotiate deals with ALL the major auto manufacturers and it would become standard equipment within a couple of years. :)
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,148
    Nah, the inventors of these devices are all too altruistic for that; they simply want to give the magic away for a few bucks so as to save the Earth. :P
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Here's a new one, sold by "Always Over-Priced" HAMMACHER & SCHLEMMER:

    The Current Regulating Fuel Efficiency Booster.

    This is the device that improves a car's fuel efficiency by up to 18%. An independent automotive testing service showed the unit increased an automobile's average fuel efficiency from 23.8 to 28.1 miles per gallon in two weeks. The device simply plugs into a car's DC outlet and stabilizes the electrical current flowing to the electrical control unit (ECU)--the computer that controls the engine's fuel injection and ignition systems--to improve gas mileage. The device mitigates electrical interference from the stereo, lights, air conditioning, and more that can negatively affect the ECU's ability to optimize fuel injection and fuel efficiency. Includes an adapter with two DC outlets that accommodate the fuel efficiency booster and another device. For use with automobiles that are at least two years old and have 12 or 24-volt systems; not for use with hybrid cars. 4" L x 1 1/2" W x 1" D. (4 oz.)

    Oh, but not for use by Hybrid Cars. Foiled Again Am I !!!
  • texasestexases Posts: 8,813
    Ugh. Let's see if they respond to this message I sent them:
    "I'm amazed you're selling a worthless product. The "Current Regulating Fuel Efficiency Booster", item 78387, cannot possibly work. Things like this are sold by scammers - why are you selling it? The EPA has tested dozens of such devices, found them all to be worthless. I'm very disappointed you would put your good name behind such a product."
  • What production car has a 24 volt electrical system? Some of the high end cars probably need 24 volt systems but none of them have them yet.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,148
    "Oh, but not for use by Hybrid Cars. Foiled Again Am I !!!"

    Are you serious? I mean, you actually sound as if you believe the BS in that ad. Say it isn't so. :confuse:
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Um, yeah, that was sarcasm.....:)
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,148
    Thanks, that's good to know. :)
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    edited February 2010
    Yeah, your car already has one of those, it's called a voltage regulator. ;)
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 13,561
    lars, people here just aren't used to you being humorous.
    me likey. :)
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2017 Ford F-150 Limited
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    This is a good development. Just a lab gizmo until they figure out how to put it into production vehicles.

    Ultra-Efficient Gas Engine Passes Test - A novel fuel-injection system achieves 64 miles per gallon.

    Transonic Combustion, a startup based in Camarillo, CA, has developed a fuel-injection system it says can improve the efficiency of gasoline engines by more than 50 percent. A test vehicle equipped with the technology gets 64 miles per gallon in highway driving, which is far better than more costly gas-electric hybrids, such as the Prius, which gets 48 miles per gallon on the highway.
    Efficient exotic: Transonic Combustion put its new fuel-injection technology into this sports car, which weighs about as much as a Toyota Prius hybrid and has similar aerodynamics. It’s not a hybrid, but it gets better gas mileage than a Prius.

    The key is heating and pressurizing gasoline before injecting it into the combustion chamber, says Mike Rocke, Transonic's vice president of business development. This puts it into a supercritical state that allows for very fast and clean combustion, which in turn decreases the amount of fuel needed to propel a vehicle. The company also treats the gasoline with a catalyst that "activates" it, partially oxidizing it to enhance combustion.

    The technology is one of many being developed to squeeze more efficiency out of existing engines to meet new fuel economy standards and other regulations--without making vehicles more expensive. "It's a time of renaissance for internal combustion engines," says William Green, a professor of chemical engineering at MIT. Improvements include smaller engines boosted with turbocharging, improved valve timing, and direct injection, in which fuel is injected directly into the combustion chamber rather than into an adjacent port. He says Transonic's approach "may be a promising way to improve on conventional direct injection."
  • texasestexases Posts: 8,813
    Interesting. Certainly in a reputable publication. I'll file this under "I'll believe it when I see it tested by others while meeting all pollution regs." I struggle to understand how it would get 50% increases in economy without addressing the major thermal losses that cause IC engines to get poor energy outputs for the energy released by the burning gas. It's not like 1/3 of the gas leaves the combustion chamber is unburnt.
  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    edited March 2010
    Sounds super high tech; doesn't it. But the thing is that Smokey Unick did essentially the same thing to a 4 cylinder Pontiac about 25 years ago, and got the same 50% mileage increase; when he installed a supercharger, a smaller radiator, and a heat exchanger on that motor. The supercharger was used to pressurize the air fuel mixture; and the heat exchanger recycled the normally spent heat from the radiator to more thoroughly vaporize the fuel mixture after it was compressed. He subsequently put the system up for sale; but no major company ended up buying it. Interesting how all the sidewalk superintendents are quick to praise a genius like Smokey; who so rightly earned a reputation for repeatedly outperforming the leading experts by coming up with innovations which were outside the traditional box; but when he went so far as to upset the commonly accepted belief (in 1985) that a 2.5 liter engine cannot possibly get 45 miles per gallon and produce 250 HP; these same people suddenly decided that they all knew more than Smokey. It is also curious that, when I taught engine theory at the highly respected Motorcycle Mechanics Institute in 2001, it was accepted that internal combustion engines only burn the relatively small portion of the fuel which is in a vapor state at the time the fuel enters the combustion chamber; and the typically incomplete vaporization of fuel is one of the factors which result in the fact that internal combustion engines only achieve less than 50% of the efficiency which is in their fuel. So I would like to know where Texases got his figures about it being impossible to waste 30% of the fuel in an engine. Better call Shipo for backup on that one!!!
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 25,716
    Not to dispute or confirm any statements, but just to make a point that is sort of related.

    Any possible magic devices from the past, if they worked, would have been passed up because it was seen as an added cost that consumers wouldn't pay for. Given the upcoming CAFE regs, all of that is changing. Costly updates will become a necessity rather than a curiosity.

    '18 BMW 330xi; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 47-car history and counting!

  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 25,716
    Could be interesting, but that article leaves alot of open questions.

    We know the weight of their vehicle and its fuel efficiency. Great. But what else? How much power is that engine putting out? What other fuel efficiency devices are being employed on the vehicle?

    50% improvement? Based on what? It says at the bottom they are currently testing it in existing engines. So, if that is underway, what was previously done to come up with this 50% number?

    I'm sure the list goes on.

    '18 BMW 330xi; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 47-car history and counting!

  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,148
    edited March 2010
    - Smokey's experiment, while a success, was onerous from a manufacturing perspective.

    - Smokey's 50% increase in fuel economy was compared to engines of the mid 1980s, not exactly a golden age of fuel economy. Said another way, I dare say that the 2.0T currently in the VW GTI would very nearly match (if not exceed) the performance and economy of Smokey's engine without all of the extremely complex plumbing.

    - From the perspective of this "New technology" being worked on by Transonic, nothing even remotely new, and like texases said, I'm thinking that the thermal losses are a much larger hurdle than more efficiently burning the gasoline. Think about it this way, I recently read a very detailed dissertation on the state of the art of combustion technology, and we find that very little of the gasoline that is injected into a combustion chamber (ala. the VW engine I mentioned before) is actually wasted. Is the combustion as efficient as what is derived in a Perfectly Stirred Reactor (PSR)? No. Is it over 90% as efficient? Yes.

    - So, if modern combustion science is able to atomize fuel to a level that is approaching the PSR, then where does Transonic think they're getting this 50% gain?

    - With the above in mind I'm going to go out on a limb here (in my mind a very short and strong one) and say that what the folks at Transonic are touting is bordering on a scam.

    As a fellow member (markcincinnati) is known to say from time to time, "I'm often wrong but never uncertain." That's my story and I'm sticking to it. ;)

    Best regards,
    Shipo
  • oregonboyoregonboy Posts: 1,653
    Good post, however, I am not usually wrong but generally uncertain. :P

    To quote the late Michael Crichton, (Author of Jurassic Park, among others):
    "I am certain there is too much certainty in the world."
  • Hi, I know this is an old post, but was interested in it. I have heard only of a few things on the market that changes your mpg's so I am sure many of you know more than I know so I won't argue with any of you without knowing what I am talking about!! Anyway I have come across a product just a few months ago & tested it on my own car & my husbands 18 wheeler. On my car I have a 1998 Chevy Lumina over 200,000 miles on it. I got a baseline of 18mpg in town driving & 22mpg highway. So I started testing it while my car needed repairs on it (husband didn't want to change anything on it) It needed spark plugs, fuel filter, oil change, air filter etc. All of the normal things that needs to be cared for. So I used the product for 2 fill ups, first thing I noticed was increased horse power. Could pass cars without being scared!! Then I noticed that there was a decrease in mpgs down to 17-16mpg Then by the second tank it went up to 20mpg town & 24 highway. Then we changed the spark plugs etc & ran the car without any treatment in it for 2 tanks. Even with all the new spark plugs we dropped back down to where we were before & no horsepower again. So then I started using it again & we are now up to 21 in town & 26 highway. Oh & I also forgot to mention I have something wrong with the cadilliac(SP) converter. We are planning on replacing it. So I feel like it's worth it to have this product in my car. I can buy 4 packets for 17.95 & save about 80.00 a month because I fill up less. I dropped about 2 to 3 tanks a month. I was filling up 9 times & now I am down to 6 to 7 depending on the month. Then we got my husbands 18 wheeler no big detailed letter there, but he went from 4.8 to 6.1mpg loaded & 5.5 to 8mpg empty & increased horsepower. So there are products out there that does save on fuel. :D
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,148
    "So there are products out there that does save on fuel."

    Ummm, yeah, you have me convinced. NOT!

    Sorry, there is absolutely zero chance that the miracle product you "tested" did anything but waste money.
  • You know what I am just telling you what happened to my car & my husbands rig. I believe it cause I am the one driving the car daily. I'm not claiming it to be a miracle product, but I am guessing by your reply you think it sounds to good to be true. Everyone that I have talked to that has tried it (cause I told a few friends about it) they all have simulair results. I have been using it 3 months & I haven't wasted any money on it. But hey I'm not trying to convince you, just help save people on fuel cost.
This discussion has been closed.