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Doug Ireland17/06/2008 18:07:00
2088 forum posts
42 photos

Hi Guys, is there a storage life for opened containers of Glow Fuel?

I have a gallon container (5% Nitro) that has had maybe two tank-fulls taken out of it about a year ago. My question is, is it still good to use or should I dispose of it?

Tim Mackey17/06/2008 20:21:00
20920 forum posts
304 photos
15 articles
Use it....or send it to me
Doug Ireland17/06/2008 21:07:00
2088 forum posts
42 photos
Not much use as a de-greaser for electric motors though!
Simon Chaddock18/06/2008 13:42:00
5710 forum posts
3034 photos
It really depends on how well sealed the container was. Methanol evaporates pretty easily (Nitro even more so) but the oil will not, so you can end up with a slightly higher ratio oil and less nitro than you started with but that should not be too serious. If it works ok use it, it too expensive to waste!
Doug Ireland18/06/2008 22:46:00
2088 forum posts
42 photos
Yeah, tell me about it! Just paid £15 for a gallon of Model Technics
Eric Bray19/06/2008 09:49:00
6600 forum posts
2 photos

Methanol also absorbs water, so if the can wasn't tightly sealed, atmospheric moisture could have migrated into the fuel.

I read somewhere that it can be removed quite easily. Shove the can of fuel into the freezer. The water settles out and freezes, then carefully pour the fuel off into a spare can, leaving the water-ice behind! 

YakMad20/06/2008 08:53:00
518 forum posts
I can just imagine the comments if a gallon of fuel was found sitting beside the Sunday roast in the freezer, rather you than me Eric!
Eric Bray20/06/2008 12:10:00
6600 forum posts
2 photos

There isn't a smiley of someone getting the boot!

(But then, one day she couldn't find the tv remote. I found it in the freezer, next to her purse, which she had also mislaid, after going on a spending spree!) 

Terry Whiting23/06/2008 06:57:00
387 forum posts


 I am pleased to say as I now become fully electric I no longer have that problem.

When I was all I/C I managed to aquire plenty of 1/2 gallon containers, all my fuel was transferred into  1/2 gallons immediately on purchase, reason being 1/2 gals fitted my model box which I would use in one or two flying sessions.                                                                                                                                          As Eric just stated it will absorb water from the atmosphere, (methanol is hygroscopic) but  I would certainly use it, what that has absorbed is negligible, it  might even enhance performance.

Use it and have fun 

PS  storage........As I always had  6 gallons on hand at any one time,I stored it in a fuel locker (locked) in my garden tool shed. 

Phil Claridge23/06/2008 10:09:00
1924 forum posts
32 photos
i use picnik cooler boxes for storing fuel standard size takes 2gallon bottles. they keep the fuel at a steady temperature, clean and stop any leaks from making any mess. pluss you can stack them up in a corner of the shed and it protects them from damage from sharp objects. they are very good to take lots of fuel in a car as they are more stable than the bottles
Mark Lubbock23/06/2008 11:21:00
313 forum posts
13 photos

I agree with Eric, the problem with stored (glow) fuel is water ingress-I have found that small engines (.049-.15) suffer from cutting at low revs with old fuel but it does not seem to affect the larger .40+ engines to the same degree.

I have heard of the freezer trick, but I get enough grief for cyano in the fridge, so probably better for batchelors!!!

Seriously, if you keep the fuel in a cool dry place with little temperature variation (next to the fine wines??) & a well sealed lid there shouldn't be any problems. Transferring the fuel into smaller containers is an idea (less air+less moisture) worth considering if you only use your fuel slowly.

Well sealed fuel keeps for ages-Iast week I started a diesel on four year old fuel that had been kept as above (the issue with diesel is the ether evaporating).

Owen Hailey05/07/2008 21:32:00
391 forum posts

Hi all.

I am about to go back to I C motors as I whent to Galaxy models in Ipswich to day to pick up a .91 S C ABC motor for the sea fury and guess what I forgot to pickup some fuel so I will have to go again soon, that will be a pleasure as there shop is crammed full of goody's, and the service is very friendly.

good luck Owen. 

Alan B07/07/2008 21:16:00
680 forum posts
92 photos

Hi Doug

You never need to chuck out old fuel. I personally think that one year is not that old providing it has been sealed. I worked in the petroleum enviroment for years. Basically light fuels loose there light ends over a period of time.  Older fuel is never binned - it would not be cost effective.  So basically the older fuel  is drowned out in proportion in a new fuel. i.e: this then lowers the specification slightly of the new fuel but it still  remains within spec and operational.

So basically the principal is the same with the glow fuels if you are worried about it then - basically mix it with a higher grade of glow fuel to perk it up.


Myron Beaumont07/07/2008 21:29:00
5797 forum posts
51 photos
I might add that I took a tip off the forum a while back & filtered some year old fuel (unopened) through 'er indoors' coffee filter set up .I was suprised what I got out !
Alan B07/07/2008 21:44:00
680 forum posts
92 photos
So does that mean Myron after your morning cup of coffee you were pulling about 4 G when you went around corners !
Myron Beaumont07/07/2008 22:22:00
5797 forum posts
51 photos
Alan B  Dont ever drink coffee. It was only the filter I used
Doug Ireland08/07/2008 17:32:00
2088 forum posts
42 photos

Hi Alan B,

What I was particularly worried about was the Nitro content of the fuel would evaporate and leave nothing but straight mathanol. If I did as you suggest then all I'd be doing was to dilute new fuel with old.

Alan B08/07/2008 18:16:00
680 forum posts
92 photos

Thought you might ask this . without the means of a pet lab to test the quantities. It is basically  not all that critical.

You can add the old can in parts over a series of say 6 cans of new 5% nitro mix without much adverse  effect to save wasting it.

Or for aurguments sake you take the pecentage weight or SG of the fuel as of water. 1 gram = 1cc

So if you have a can of fuel  of 4.5 ltr with 5% by weight nitro then that would be 225 g of nitro

So if you were to buy 4.5 ltr with 10% nitro that then should be 450g of nitro content.

So if you added a 4.5 ltr can of zero nitro to the 4.5 ltr can of 10% nitro you would have 9 ltrs with 450g of nitro content which would then equate to 9 ltrs of 5% mix     -  ish!

Although you have used a couple of tanks (quantity unknown) I think your engine would forgive you !


flytilbroke08/07/2008 19:08:00
2083 forum posts
5 photos
Use it and enjoy. To get much water into a standard container of fuel a person would need to work at it, or leave the container open for a prolonged time. A completly EMPTY of fuel container, holds five and a bit litres of air. Now how much water is in that amount of air? So, water contamination has been exagerated with no foundation in a practical sense. We do not cycle the amount of air in our container so water ingress is minute. Other degredation may take place if not kept in a dark-ish environment, perhaps some other aging will too, but it will take quite a long time.
cymaz17/07/2008 10:06:00
9251 forum posts
1195 photos
If you have fuel over a year old then you're not flying enough!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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