12:46 am - I've started thinking...
...and it's about something vaguely mechanical-based, and vaguely sabotage-based.
Most folks think sugar in a gas tank will nuke the engine. Well, it won't. It's been tested repeatedly, raw sugar in gasoline is no different than pouring silica sand in. It just clogs the fuel filters at worst. Even on ancient cars.
Well, most folks also know that water in your gas tank is VeryBad because it will settle 'below' the gasoline and refuse to burn. The infamous 'crank forever and go nowhere' problem.
The solution to water in the gas tank, amusingly, is to pour a bottle of denatured alchohol into the tank, as it's soluable in water and once the concentration is high enough will let the water get 'smoked out' of the engine. It'll play merry hob with the ECU's timing self-adjustment for fuel grades, but it's the generally-accepted answer to a 'watered down' gas tank.
Well... sugar disolves in water. And alchohol dissolves in water and can let it ignite. The entire way that sugar is supposedly able to ruin an engine is by getting into the guts of it, and caramelizing under the intense heat and pressure. And the whole solution is technically combustable.
So what would happen if you mixed some proportion of Simple Syrup (boil water, add sugar to saturation, cool), and Denatured Alchohol, and dumped that
into the gas tank? I think that's the 'actual' way to 'sugar' an engine in mythology, as it keeps the sugar liquid so it can get past the fuel filters, and the fluid combustable so the engine will actually turn over and keep drawing the stuff into it. And since it's heavier than fuel to begin with and still
not soluable in most gasolines, it'll settle to the bottom if given time and hit the engine just after the fuel in the fuel lines has gotten the engine running smoothly.
This is what my brain ponders at 1AM on the job site, 'obvious' barriers to recurring myths, and how to possibly make them real. Gods, I'll need to track down the Mystbusters episode about sugaring a gas tank and see if they covered this angle or not now...6 comments