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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 7:12 pm 
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hello

I used to have a Hyundai santa fe lpg till it died a year or so ago. I have been hunting for a replacement LPG vehicle but need a van. i spotted a Iveco 'natural gas' van, is it expensive to convert it to LPG?

and i am based in Cardiff and Telford, can anyone recommend someone to do the job?

thanks in advance for your help


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 9:22 pm 
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Its probably a factory fit - If you knew the front end you might be able to reuse the injectors and ECU. The reducer and tank/filler are different. If you had to take the whole lot off (if its a front end off a manufacturer you can't get software for easily for example) it would be more work than starting from scratch.

TBH you'd be better off starting with an unmodified van and fitting LPG to it. The trouble with natural gas is finding somewhere to fill it, unless you want to get a homefill setup as theres only a handful of sites across the UK.

Theres only 2 regular installers on here - one of them is Dai (Classicsweede - Anglesea) and the other is Simon (LPGC - South Elmsall/Yorkshire)


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 9:45 pm 
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many thanks brian, i am looking at an ex tesco factory fit Iveco. i figured if it was a CNG engine its used to gas so might not need a liquid dripper.

i have friends on anglesea, might be an excuse to go visit.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:32 pm 
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funkybob wrote:
many thanks brian, i am looking at an ex tesco factory fit Iveco. i figured if it was a CNG engine its used to gas so might not need a liquid dripper.

i have friends on anglesea, might be an excuse to go visit.


That should be the case as they fitted hardened valve seats to the heads on the lpg ones. Assuming it has the original head of course! So that would be a benefit. But you'd still be looking at a load of work to remove the kit - where is the current tank setup on the van? Theres an irregular poster on here that is after tanks etc so disposing of them shouldn't be a major problem if they are easily removed.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2017 11:02 am 
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Agreed with Bri's advice. I've had a few people over the years ask me about converting CNG Iveco's to LPG, it is at least as much work as converting a standard Iveco to LPG, only hardened valves might make it worth it, none of the factory CNG parts would be re-usable as part of an LPG install.

An alternative (in case of the CNG kit working) could be to keep it CNG. There are few places to refuel with CNG in the UK, yet CNG is piped directly to most houses. It is possible to buy a CNG compressor to fit at home to allow slow refuelling at home, such kit is expensive and would need plumbing to the domestic gas supply, to stay legal you'd need to pay duty on it, but if you could find a cheap working compressor and don't travel far from home this could be a viable option. At least the fuel would then be very cheap indeed.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2017 3:18 pm 
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LPGC wrote:
Agreed with Bri's advice. I've had a few people over the years ask me about converting CNG Iveco's to LPG, it is at least as much work as converting a standard Iveco to LPG, only hardened valves might make it worth it, none of the factory CNG parts would be re-usable as part of an LPG install.

An alternative (in case of the CNG kit working) could be to keep it CNG. There are few places to refuel with CNG in the UK, yet CNG is piped directly to most houses. It is possible to buy a CNG compressor to fit at home to allow slow refuelling at home, such kit is expensive and would need plumbing to the domestic gas supply, to stay legal you'd need to pay duty on it, but if you could find a cheap working compressor and don't travel far from home this could be a viable option. At least the fuel would then be very cheap indeed.


i live in a flat, would be difficult to pump the gas.

You say however that none of the CNG parts would be re-useable, would that include the tank? thing is, i was under the impression CNG was at much higher pressures than LPG so i presumed the tank and pipes would at least be ok. Was i wrong in assuming this?

and do you know the Iveco engine in question? i used to run a Santa Fe with a BRC lpg kit on, do these engines also run on petrol? if they do, then i could run a line from my kitchen and cope


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2017 6:08 pm 
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It would include the tank not being compatible with LPG. CNG is stored as a vapour in the tank, the tank stops filling when a certain pressure is reached (much higher than LPG), LPG is stored as a liquid, they stop filling when the tank gets to 80% full when a float closes a valve and shuts off incoming gas. LPG tanks have very different excess pressure relief valves etc to CNG tanks.
The Iveco will also run on petrol.
Not sure what you mean by 'run a line from kitchen and cope'.. You wouldn't be able to refuel a CNG vehicle like that.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2017 6:22 pm 
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LPGC wrote:
It would include the tank not being compatible with LPG. CNG is stored as a vapour in the tank, the tank stops filling when a certain pressure is reached (much higher than LPG), LPG is stored as a liquid, they stop filling when the tank gets to 80% full when a float closes a valve and shuts off incoming gas. LPG tanks have very different excess pressure relief valves etc to CNG tanks.
The Iveco will also run on petrol.
Not sure what you mean by 'run a line from kitchen and cope'.. You wouldn't be able to refuel a CNG vehicle like that.


you said it was possible to fill a CNG car at home, im presuming using some form of compressor with CNG being a gas. surely it wouldnt matter how long the pipe was cos if i used natural gas in my flat and used the cut off valve to the home the compressor would suck all the excess out of the system? i could just as easily run a large pipe from my cooker supply to a compressor in close proximity to my vehicle again using the shut off valve to suck all the gas out of the hose, either way i dont see there being an issue with gas being stuck in the pipe


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2017 10:09 pm 
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funkybob wrote:
LPGC wrote:
It would include the tank not being compatible with LPG. CNG is stored as a vapour in the tank, the tank stops filling when a certain pressure is reached (much higher than LPG), LPG is stored as a liquid, they stop filling when the tank gets to 80% full when a float closes a valve and shuts off incoming gas. LPG tanks have very different excess pressure relief valves etc to CNG tanks.
The Iveco will also run on petrol.
Not sure what you mean by 'run a line from kitchen and cope'.. You wouldn't be able to refuel a CNG vehicle like that.


you said it was possible to fill a CNG car at home, im presuming using some form of compressor with CNG being a gas. surely it wouldnt matter how long the pipe was cos if i used natural gas in my flat and used the cut off valve to the home the compressor would suck all the excess out of the system? i could just as easily run a large pipe from my cooker supply to a compressor in close proximity to my vehicle again using the shut off valve to suck all the gas out of the hose, either way i dont see there being an issue with gas being stuck in the pipe


The pressure on mains gas is approx 18mbar - a quick google search shows the following

"Compressed Natural Gas or CNG is stored on the vehicle in high-pressure tanks - 20 to 25 MPa (200 to 250 bar, or 3,000 to 3,600 psi). Natural gas consists mostly of methane and is drawn from gas wells or in conjunction with crude oil production."

The homefill setups would need to run overnight to stand any chance of filling from mains gas, as you'd have to increase the pressure. I suspect, but don't know for sure, that you'd have to get a professional to install your homefill setup to take gas off a separate meter (the meter in a domestic setup also does the pressure regulation) running at a higher pressure. But your still talking several hours to fill up. And significant cost I'd suspect as well, its the kind of kit you'd need to have permanently installed and secure.

Tanks wise they are completely different - They look more like welding cylinders than LPG tanks do usually. You probably wouldn't even get the one way valve on the filler valve to open with the pressure in a LPG pump on it. They are just wrong for LPG


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2017 9:37 am 
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As Bri said.

The compressor would have to be near the car, the low pressure gas piped to the compressor from your gas supply, the high pressure gas from the compressor goes through a short length of pipe to the car, the compressor needs an electrical supply. If you live in a flat where would you site the compressor and how would you run a gas pipe or electrical cable to it? Even if there was some safe way, the compressor might cost more than the Iveco. Living in a flat and costs are the problem.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 1:38 pm 
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I saw some advertisements in Canada about such compressor a few years ago. If i recall correctly the cost just for the compressor was in excess of 1200£, on top of that it would take very long to fill up the tank to pressure and use a fair amount of electric power.
A tank filled at 250 bars has a notable energy content and I'd not want one in my garage :)


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 5:01 pm 
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Yes it would cost some in terms of electricity to compress mains CNG into a vehicle CNG tank... But you could power the compressor from a little engine that ran on CNG ;-)

Various model CNG compressors have various prices and performance.. could buy a small one for £1200 that might take ages to fill a tank, or as memory serves I saw some at around £5k that had better performance to match the higher price tag (though would still be slower than filling with LPG).

I agree CNG at 250 bar should be more of a worry than an LPG tank (maybe 10 bar which is no worry at all really) but we could compare the CNG tank to oxy acetylene welding tanks which plenty garages store, in comparison the CNG tank seems safer than the oxygen tank but both types of tank are well up to the job.

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PostPosted: Thu May 24, 2018 2:20 pm 
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Sorry to double-post, just spotted this thread. I'm after the cylinders from an ex-Tesco van. Did any of you decommission these? The OP says there was one lurking in Angelsey. That's Dai's home-turf. I wonder if he saw any?

viewtopic.php?f=33&t=14353


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PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2018 4:57 pm 
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CNG wrote:
Sorry to double-post, just spotted this thread. I'm after the cylinders from an ex-Tesco van. Did any of you decommission these? The OP says there was one lurking in Angelsey. That's Dai's home-turf. I wonder if he saw any?

http://lpgforum.co.uk/viewtopic.php?f=33&t=14353


While you're around would you mind writing a bit about your CNG setup with focus on the refuelling? Think you said before you fill with gas that comes from a landfill site.. what do you use to compress it etc?

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2018 10:49 pm 
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It's not really an option in this country unless you're one of the big boys, and even Tesco seem to have dropped it. They cite the provision and maintenance of their own infrastructure as too costly. They're right! My set-up was not cheap. For public access, you can fill in Daventry and Crewe, and that's about it. But even with those two, you can't jsut rock up and expect a fill. Account only. There is a fill in Nottingham somewhere, and another down in Wincanton, but you have to book/ call first.

Me? I have my own home-fill set-up, the fella in Wincanton produces his from his farm, it really is cow-poo. GasRec (DIRFT in Daventry) do it via their landfil sites, hiving off the methane, which is where Tesco, Waitrose, DHL, Stobarts, Tenen etc fuel from. Along with the Chive network, that really is you lot. And these outfits run LNG into their HGV fleets.

It works for me, largely because I have a background in similar fields, and sourced a factory-fit Volvo. Volvo dabbled in it, back in the day. Dai narrowly missed putting a new front-end on for me a few years back, only I have my head around the Necam system.

Frankly my set-up, even 20 years old now, aside from the Guardian-reader, cool-factor, makes the current crop of EVs look a joke. With LPG regarded as fringe actively, my approach really is left-field. For me, it works great, it certainly isn't for most people. And it certainly will never run-out wholesale in this country - for much the same reasons LPG doesn't. Uncool and not simple enough to understand. This, despite the fact, that it could be argued it's the front-runner of all the ALT fuels. You need to know why you are doing it, and how. There's a bloke running a steam Ford Zodiac. I suspect he does it because he can. He's my hero.

Only Mr Musk and his disciples are going to win this one, and the fall-out when it comes will make the deseasel-scandal look like a picnic, but don't get me started.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2018 11:37 am 
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Thanks CNG.

I did look into CNG and home filling a while ago, works out very cheap in the long term but ROI will take far longer than LPG for MR Average due to the high cost of the home fill facility. Vehicle conversions wouldn't be much more expensive than an LPG conversion and users could retain most under bonnet and electrical components if switching a vehicle between LPG and CNG conversion.

Particularly interested in your home fill setup... Does this involve filling from mains gas? If so, what's your setup and how could others do the same (parts / compressor / connecting to mains gas / do you store pressurised gas or compress direct to the vehicle tank / etc) ?

Simon

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