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Diesel Power Becoming More Attractive
|Author||Topic: Diesel Power Becoming More Attractive|
posted 06-02-2015 07:15 PM ET (US)
This morning for the first time in many, many years I saw diesel fuel selling for less than gasoline.
The Murphys (WalMart) fuel station in Fairhope, AL was offering diesel at $2.62 per gallon while regular gasoline was priced at $2.66.
A couple of weeks ago in Gulf Shores, AL a Shell station was selling diesel for $.05 more than regular gasoline.
Is this a trend and are we seeing it in other parts of the country?
posted 06-02-2015 09:28 PM ET (US)
Well not in Ft Lauderdale, diesel is about .50-.60 cent more a gallon than gas[soline]. You would think it would be the opposite since diesel is a byproduct of gas[oline].
posted 06-03-2015 12:26 AM ET (US)
Every one in a while a Diesel Powered I/O Classic Outrage pops up. Always thought that would be a cool boat.
This one was around a few years ago
Here is another
posted 06-03-2015 07:54 AM ET (US)
I wonder if it would be feasible to put a modern VW TDI diesel in an I/O Outrage?
posted 06-03-2015 08:28 AM ET (US)
Probably feasible. If not the VW engine there are many other light automobile diesels out there. Generally one will find automobile diesel variants in other applications, mostly generator sets.
The greatest challenge would be adapting the cooling system. Turbochargers can get pretty hot and used in a marine application when the engine is virtually pushing up hill continuously could get extremely hot.
posted 06-03-2015 10:24 AM ET (US)
For an inboard diesel you would be best to use fresh water engine coolent with a saltwater heat exchanger for the oil and water. Having a saltwater cool engine just eats it up to much.
posted 06-03-2015 10:33 AM ET (US)
I disagree. Both diesel and gasoline are refined from crude oil. See
posted 06-03-2015 02:06 PM ET (US)
Today’s rack price of Diesel is 5 cents more than 87 octane unleaded 10% ethanol in the Pacific Northwest. The Federal excise tax on Diesel is 6 cents per gallon more than gasoline. .243 for Diesel and .183 for gasoline. Washington State adds another .375 on for both gas and Diesel. On road Diesel has .618 tax on it. Off road Diesel does not but is subject to sales tax. At today’s price sales tax is about .22 cents. The only Diesel I have seen at marinas is off road Diesel, no road tax. All the gasoline has the road tax in it at Washington marinas. You have to file a claim to get the State tax back on boat gas. You cannot claim back the Federal tax unless you are a commercial fisherman.
Off Road Diesel is about .30 cents less than gasoline today. On road Diesel is about .06 cents more than gasoline today.
posted 06-03-2015 02:20 PM ET (US)
Hoosier asks -- I wonder if it would be feasible to put a modern VW TDI diesel in an I/O Outrage?
I believe this www.mercurymarine.com/en/us/engines/diesel/mercury-diesel/20l-tier-3/ is a marinized VW 2.0 TDI. Can't think of any good reason why this wouldn't work.
posted 06-03-2015 06:36 PM ET (US)
If I had a larger boat (for example, a True North 34 Express), I would definitely opt for diesel inboards. In my area, diesel is less expensive and if I go to Mexico, there is better availibility.
In a smaller boat, practically speaking, diesel means inboard or I/O. To make it fit in a small center console means dealing with a large enclosure, often occupying most of the aft deck. You lose room for a decent bait tank. In the west coast, most small east-coast transom bait tanks are not sufficient, and the bait dies off quickly.
Edgewater had a 22" diesel and I thought the placement of the engine was clever. I went to their website today and saw that model no longer included in their lineup. The engine was under the seating area and the deck was clean. Fuel capacity took a hit to make room for the engine. I was intrigued because I like clean transoms. Standing at the transom was essentially the same as standing at the gunwales. Clean access from a fishing perspective.
As for outboard diesels, I would be interested in what the companies come up with. I think I have plenty of time to wait.
posted 06-03-2015 07:24 PM ET (US)
Cool! That really opens up some interesting repower/conversion ideas....however at 800+ lbs for a package it may not work in a classic Whaler hull.
posted 06-04-2015 07:29 AM ET (US)
I don't think 800 lbs would be a problem because that 800 lbs is not hanging on the transom. The center of gravity for that 800 lbs is probably at least one foot forward of the transom. Their Inline 4, V6 and V8 gas models weigh more.
posted 06-04-2015 07:31 AM ET (US)
One other note -- Even the V6 TDI model is within the weight range of the V6 and V8 gas models.
posted 06-04-2015 07:37 AM ET (US)
More than ten years ago, I recall seeing an innovative center console boat powered by a diesel sterndrive. The boat was about 18-feet long. The diesel was mounted amidship. I believe it was under the seats at the center console helm. A jackshaft connected the engine to the outdrive, and it ran under the deck. I can't recall the boat builder's name. The local dealership where I was keeping my boat in storage had one on their showroom floor. I thought it was a very interesting concept.
posted 06-04-2015 01:24 PM ET (US)
JimH- that 18 foot center console which you are referring to may have been a Shamrock. They were very innovative in putting the engine forward, and then using what they called a keel drive to protect the shaft.
I personally am a huge fan of clean transoms. When it comes to outboards, I really like the 1993 through 1997 outrages, the early 2000's Grady White Experss 265, the current Grady White 230 center console. And there are others. All of the aforementioned boats have outboards but at the same time when a fisherman is at the Stern, they are relatively close to the water. On so many boats today, there is a fixed Stern seat, fish storage, notched tran some, etc. and when you look at it, there is so much "stuff" between the farthest place aft that someone can stand, and the waters edge behind the engine. It seems like fishing from a third row seat. So for me, whenever anybody comes up with a relatively small, 17 to 27 foot center console which has an inboard diesel, I take serious notice. Unfortunately, a lot of times, the engine sits higher than the deck and that forces a large enclosure which oftetimes limits deck utilization. So when anybody pulls off having an inboard diesel with little or no impact on the deck, and there is a clean transom where somebody is basically at the waters edge, I call that innovation with the fisherman truly in mind. Those Shamrocks were that, as was the Edgewater 22 foot CCD diesel (which appears discontinued).
posted 06-04-2015 03:24 PM ET (US)
My "crude" understanding is that Diesel is actually cheaper to refine than gasoline as it requires less distillation. The reason for the increase cost at the pump versus gasoline (the norm the last 10+ years) is purely from a distribution volume factor.
Put simply, the volume of gasoline being refined is so much larger than that of diesel affording much larger economies of scale. Like most things of this nature, it all boils down to demand and the bulk cost associated with those demands.
Now, why diesel didn't always cost more at the pump, I don't know...I can't imagine that there has been that great a disparity between the uses of these fuels over recent years.
posted 06-04-2015 03:42 PM ET (US)
When comparing gas prices to diesel, you cannot compare gallon for gallon. 1 gallon of diesel has more energy than 1 gallon of gas, so all other things equal, your boat will go farther on 1 gallon of diesel than 1 gallon of gas. So you'll buy less diesel than gas for the same boat trip. So instead of dollars per gallon, compare dollars per mile or per hour of operation.
posted 06-04-2015 04:45 PM ET (US)
Having been in the oil production and refining business for nearly 40 years. You could write a book about the historical presence diesel has had, but more accurately NOT had in our country.
I am a diesel advocate in automotive application. I currently drive a Mercedes Bluetec diesel and it is one of the cleanest production engines available and one of the finest automotive powerplants ever. Mated to a seven speed transmission, it is both powerful and economical.
I once co-owned an old 39' Post powered with twin turbo diesels, and looking back I'm not sure the lower revving diesel is the best application for boating, in this day and age.
With the advent of the high tech E-TEC two stroke technology you get a high torque, high revving, clean burning engine, even cleaner than comparable sized gasoline engines.
In my mind the E-TEC engine is the Bluetec equivalent of outboards.
Why would anyone want to power boats with diesel anymore?
posted 06-04-2015 09:34 PM ET (US)
I've owned a diesel car in Canada since 1998, diesel has been cheaper here 75% of that time since 1998. Today it is about 5-7% cheaper, for the last 2 or 3 months or so.
Gas and diesel prices are set based on an oligopoly, it is sold for whatever it can be sold for. Based on the cost of a barrel of oil, it is much higher today than when a barrel was US$150.
The reasons for a price increase are many, a hurricane may hit the gulf, Iraq war, Iran sanctions, shutdown for oil refinery refit, Libya issues, Yemen issues, attacks in Nigeria, etc. You can add some more I am sure.
The reasons for a price drop are very few and very hard to remember for some reason.
I think there are some great diesel inboards, lots of torque, run low RPM and a big prop. A good diesel outboard doesn't exist because there is little motivation to invent one.
posted 06-05-2015 03:38 AM ET (US)
Stingray Boats built a center console I/O version, w/ a jackshaft. It was 20' long, and the engine was under the console. I almost purchased one back in 2001. Diesel was an option if ordered from the factory. Intrepid has a beautiful 24' CC I/O diesel Check the website and drool!
posted 06-05-2015 10:15 AM ET (US)
When I have travelled outside of the USA and Canada, I have found that diesel is a much more common fuel for highway passenger cars than is seen here.
posted 06-06-2015 05:55 AM ET (US)
I recall seeing a Chris Craft fiberglass open model with a console, along the side of the road around the Traverse City area years ago. It had a jack shaft setup from a stern drive unit to an engine under the console. What caught my attention was the shear line was identical to our Sportsman model.
Never was able to locate a model name or subsequent pictures.
Regards - Don
posted 06-09-2015 01:46 PM ET (US)
Saw a Diesel Merc Cruiser inboard outboard on a Military RIB on Saturday at Fleet Week in Portland, OR. It was on the Canadian boat I think.
The American RIB's had E-TEC 90's and the Coast Guard was running Honda.
posted 06-09-2015 05:12 PM ET (US)
Jim if you want to be correct you are right diesel is not a byproduct of gas[oline] however, if you look at your own post, diesel needs one step to be process were as gas[oline] needs 4-5 steps, so why is it more expensive?
posted 06-09-2015 11:04 PM ET (US)
There are 2 steps:
1. Refine into diesel
2. Price gouge the customer.
Come to California and watch it happen
posted 06-10-2015 12:24 AM ET (US)
CONTENDER directs these comments at me:
CONTENDER--it goes without saying that I want the information provided in these discussions to be correct. Incorrect information is not of much value if it is passed off as correct information.
CONTENDER I did not offer anything of my own about the process of distillation or refinement of gasoline and diesel from crude oil. I pointed to articles on other websites that explain that process. Those articles are not "my post." Those articles are the work of their authors, which I think are identified on those other websites. Also, you should not ask me any questions to explain the price differences between diesel fuel and gasoline fuel. I have no really good ideas about fuel prices, and, up to this point in the discussion I have not mentioned anything about fuel prices. Also, I have no information about the price mechanism or the market forces. I can just make speculations. See the remarks above from DON SSDD. They appear to offer exactly the information you are seeking from me.
CONTENDER--which fuel, diesel or gasoline is the fuel you reference with "it" in your statement? I can't tell if you are saying the diesel is more expensive than gasoline or vice versa. I think you meant to say why is diesel more expensive than gasoline when diesel needs fewer steps in the refinement. What I have noticed recently is that at marine fuel docks the price of a gallon of marine grade diesel was about $3.75 and REC90 gasoline was $4.54. In other words, gasoline was more expensive than diesel, the opposite of your claim about the prices. On the highway diesel is often more expensive than gasoline, but the price difference is slight, and diesel is only more expensive than the lowest grades of gasoline. Premium grade, high-octane gasoline is about the same price or more expensive than diesel.
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