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Old 5 Jan 2007
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How to estimate fuel requirements?

I’m looking for some advice on estimating the amount of fuel a vehicle needs to carry on an overland trip.
I’m looking at a trip through Kazakhstan, Mongolia, China and Russia, but how can you find out the availability and reliability of filling stations? (In Russia, we are planning to go Vladivostok to Magadan, then back west to Moscow somehow, so potential I think this could be the remotest part of the route).

And is LPG available at all?

Tri NZ
[if it helps, the vehicle will probably be a typical Land Rover (110 or 101 forward control) or Nissan Patrol (or similar)]
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Old 5 Jan 2007
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I don't know about fuel availability in the more remote parts but diesel, petrol and LPG are widely available in western russia, and indeed through any of the countries you may travel through on the way.
I usually try and aim for a range of about 800 miles (tarmac driving). the best way to check more detailed availability on the road is to ask people coming the other way.
In russia many of the lorries are petrol, due to cold winter temperautures so you don't get the same availability issues as in, say, Africa, where diesel is available but not petrol.
petrol is about 35p a litre and LPG even cheaper.
I think that generally you will find fuel is fairly easy to come by, especially if you aren't too fussy on the quality. guys have done these trips on bikes, which have a lot less range than a 4x4 with a few jerries.
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Old 5 Jan 2007
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If you have to carry your own fuel, Tom Sheppard in "vehicle dependant expedition guide" reccomends:

work out your fuel average, add 25%, then add "100 miles" (approx one jerrycan)
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Old 6 Jan 2007
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thats ok, if you know where you can get more fuel!! the system I use for off road, if I do have that information, is to look at the distance in kilometers (Easy as most maps or route guides are in km), then take that number, say 450km, assume it was 450miles, calculate how much I would need on tarmac for that distance (as I know that figure exactly, wheras fuel consumption off rd is rather hard to judge) and then add 20%. I find it fairly easy to work out that way and it has always given me an appropriate margin of spare fuel, but the original question was about fuel availability.

incidently, LPG is so widely used it is all some garages sell in Poland and to the east of there
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Old 7 Jan 2007
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I lashed out on a Russian Road Atlas which shows towns with Autogas outlets. http://www.themapshop.co.uk/ I'd expect there to be more problems with getting fittings to match up rather than actual availability. I think Europe has about 4 different fitting styles - so god only knows what Russia has.

Seeing as so many Russians now drive their used/imported Japanese cars back across Siberia from Vlad. the availability of all fuel must be reasonable.

I've always found that my fuel consumption remains about the same for driving along dirt roads versus driving along bitumen roads. But that said the condition of the dirt road is the all important thing - if you are trying to plough through deep mud or doing a lot of winching then expect your fuel consumption to be about 4 times what you usually get. (Bear in mind that chewing up a dirt road by driving over it while too muddy may well upset the locals who rely upon the road in drier times)

Completely off road - hmmm should you being do that at all?
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Old 7 Jan 2007
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Completely off road - hmmm should you being do that at all?[/QUOTE]

that rather depends on circumstances!
you could say the same about

'if you are trying to plough through deep mud or doing a lot of winching'

off road is generally taken as being off tarmac, in the UK at least. even in heavy sand on the piste I have never used 4 times as much fuel!! about double is the max

If you don't have the right adapter when you leave you will almost certainly find it when you get there. I haven't tried to get LPG in Russia, but my vehicle that has LPG fitted carries three adapters, which cover all european variations, and were bought from my LPG fitter.

with regard to your choice of vehicle a landy would give you a good choice of reasonably priced long range tanks which enables you to carry fuel accross borders ( a lot less than the £700 I was quoted for a long range tank for my 'cruiser). generally I have found that most borders limit you to one 20ltr jerry can.. load up before you come back into western europ and you would probably recover a good chunk of the cost of your tanks!!

Last edited by moggy 1968; 8 Jan 2007 at 23:47.
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