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  #1  
Old 18 Dec 2007
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Fuel computer

Hello,

I am looking for a solution to measure more accurately the amount of
fuel used/left in the tanks. Typical fuel gauges are notoriously inaccurate as they measure level, not volume. There are systems such as this ( DIESEL 3200 ) which calculate the volume by monitoring fuel flow.

Would anybody have information about a similar product, only without the need for re-mortgage?
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  #2  
Old 18 Dec 2007
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Even then are you going to believe it...?

If it is critical the best gauge is a visual one. I don't know it you can do this but a clear hose run from the bottom of the tank to the top will give you a level check.

There is a bit more involved than just this one line answer but we can expand it if you think it's an option.

Keep it simple.

Steve
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Old 18 Dec 2007
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expensive...

Roman,
we looked at this subject in a fairly massive amount of detail for two reasons:
- to accurately measure truck consumptions to try to prevent theft
- to get accurate consumption figures for large diesel generators burning about 200 litres per hour...

We looked at solutions like the navman one whereby they differentially calculate the flow (i.e. one on flow line, one on return and calculate the difference). Unfortunately they are expensive. Accurate flow meters are and there is no real way around this that we found. Of course if you have a nice fancy engine with electronic injection (CAT c-9 is one such engine we have) you can plug in the laptop and get realtime fuel burn, number of stop/starts, % under full load, etc etc.

We ended up buying a system here:
GEMINI PD METERS : Engine Fuel Consumption Flow Meter Range : Fuel & Oil Flow Meters : Bell Flow Systems Ltd

but unfortunately second mortgage pricing applies... Sorry but we are also still looking for a solution that doesn't break the bank.

Gil
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Old 18 Dec 2007
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keep it simple

Keep it simple gets my vote. find out how much your tank holds, then fill up when your gauge says half empty, if that is half of total capacity then it is accurate. if not you can calculate. always fill up when you are half empty is a good habit. and work out your range. take one full gerry can for emergencies.

Graeme
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Old 19 Dec 2007
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Gil,

Thanks for your input. While searching for products I've come across dozens of patents, but it appears very few have found their way into the market. It is a bit surprising that such a relatively simple process control solution should be so expensive to implement.

Graeme,
I think I have a general idea how to use a dipstick, too. All I am trying to do is make dipping the tank even simpler for me.

As for the 'keep it simple' train of thought, Einstein said: "Things should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler."
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Old 19 Dec 2007
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Just an idea.
Check out companies that make or supply data loggers, they may have something you could put together.
I don't know if they have any liquid sensors or flow metres, but I used a company called Pico Technology, they had an excellent support service.

Steve
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Old 19 Dec 2007
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link

try this?

Digital Flow Meters: Fuel Flow Meters, Water Flow Meters, Digital Flow Meters

graeme
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