Archive for October, 2008

Alaska to Argentina with the Oil and Water Project DVD

October 30, 2008

Well, the Oil and Water Project SVO-Kayak road trip fellas have released their DVD and I must say I chuckled out loud a few times while watching their journey.

It’s a popular theme: Driving from the top of the world to the tropics (and to the bottom of the world in their case).

There’s a number of folks up here who just finished veg-fueled drives up the Alaska highway, and a more are converting their rigs for lower-48 and beyond journeys.  These guys may be the first, however, to film a veg-trip all the way from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego.

I ran into the Oil and Water rig while they were up at the Girdwood Forest Fair in 2006, and we compared biodiesel and salmon oil information.  They had a really cool Toyota mini-firetruck that they converted not only to run on vegoil, but to serve as a camper/party truck, and even press seeds into oil on the fly.

As far as the film goes, I was impressed how they showed some intense kayaking, a lot of camraderie with their rotating travelling crew and a ton of connections with school groups and local governments along their route – all the while promoting sustainable local biofuels.

It’s a fun, lighthearted journey.  There’s no talking head interviews like so many of the SVO-flicks out there, no preaching.  Just a couple of guys and their friends out to have fun and teach about renewable fuels as they travel the world – burning used chicarrone pig fat and raw palm oil along the way.

Maybe I liked it because I could identify with them.

The Alaska scenes go by quickly in the first ten minutes or so, but they do see a bunch of wildlife, run their rig on salmon oil, and take some runs on the Susitna River.  In addition, Seth’s brother Damien is a local Alaska boy, and he makes a cameo appearance close to the equator.

Looking for a easygoing and wanderlust inspiring veg-trip flick?  Try this one.  It’s $30 (with shipping) from the Oil and Water Project.

Veg On!

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Biodiesel on Alaska Independent Radio.

October 30, 2008

Hey folks, we’re going to be interviewed on Alaska Independent Radio this Sunday November 2nd, 7-8pm Alaska Time (8-9pm Seattle/Pacific).

AIR is the University of Alaska Anchorage’s (UAA) weekly progressive news show on KRUA 88.1 FM – “Bringing you free thought on Sunday afternoons, discussing national, international and local political news.”

We’ll be talking about sustainable local biodiesel, fish oil biodiesel prospects, upcoming biodiesel courses, the Alaska biodiesel scene and more.

Feel free to call in with your questions or rants (we love a good rant) 907-786-6805.

If you’re not near Anchorage you can stream it online at krua.uaa.alaska.edu.

And yes, I’ve got KRUA programmed into my veg-mobile radio.  You should too.

Veg On!

“Historic SVO Trip to Alaska” on YouTube

October 24, 2008

Charlie Anderson over at Golden Fuel Systems just posted a 10 minute video about his SVO-fueled trip to Alaska this past summer.  Although it doesn’t have a whole lot of vegoil content in it, it is a fun family-friendly montage/slideshow of an Alaska Highway road trip.

I had the honor of chatting with Charlie in the parking lot of the new LEED-certified Homer Public Library during his trip.  He’s a great guy and I wish I had more time, but both of our families were waiting in the veg-mobiles.

There’s a growing pile of SVO-road trip films out there.  Even the Oil and Water Project guys have made their 2006 Alaska to Tierra del Fuego trip into a DVD.  (And don’t forget “Fat of the Land” the first backyard biodiesel road trip flick.)

So, maybe it’s not the first SVO Alaska Trip, nor even the first filmed one, but it’s a nice little 10 minute family road trip video that happened to be fueled by waste vegetable oil.

Veg On!

Hands-On Biodiesel Brewing Class – Sat Nov 8 – Anchorage

October 15, 2008

Saturday November 8, 2008 – 12:30pm

Anchorage Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
3201 Turnagain St, Anchorage, AK 99517

$49 fee – $39 for AUU Fellowship members.

Join us for a hands-on all-afternoon class to learn how to gather quality used vegetable oil, test it for production, and make your own biodiesel to take home.

Registration is required, class size is limited, and the course fee includes the use of all safety equipment, lab supplies and ingredients for a test batch.

It is recommended, though not required, that students attend the Backyard Biodiesel Basics presentation on Sunday November 2nd in Eagle River.

Call Will Taygan at Arctic Vegwerks 688-5288 or email will@alaskabiodiesel.org for more information and to register.

You can also register online by clicking here or by visiting the Alaska Biodiesel events page.

Other upcoming events:

Sunday November 2, 2008 2:00pm
Backyard Biodiesel Basics
Free at the Eagle River Nature Center

Biodiesel Educator Will Taygan provides an overview on how to make any diesel petroleum-free. Participants will explore the science behind biodiesel and SVO (Straight Vegetable Oil) systems, compare emissions, learn how to collect oil responsibly, and watch biodiesel being made.

$5 parking for non-members – no registration required.

Backyard Biodiesel Basics – Sunday Nov 2, 2008 – Eagle River

October 6, 2008

Sunday November 2, 2008 – 2pm

FREE at the Eagle River Nature Center; $5 parking fee for non-members.

Biodiesel Educator Will Taygan provides an overview on how to make any diesel petroleum-free. Participants will explore the science behind biodiesel and SVO (Straight Vegetable Oil) systems, compare emissions, learn how to collect oil responsibly, and watch biodiesel being made.

Seating is limited, so arrive early to guarantee your spot.

Backyard Biodiesel Basics is the first in a two part series of biodiesel and vegoil classes this November. See the events page at AlaskaBiodiesel.org for more information.

This seminar is based on the biodiesel program offered at the Bioneers conference. Those folks who attended the session at Bioneers are encouraged to sign-up for the second class in this series, offered November 8th in Anchorage, where participants will be making their own batches of biodiesel.

Eagle River Nature Center (32750 Eagle River Road) is located at the end (mile 12) of Eagle River Road in Eagle River, Alaska.

Sponsored by Arctic Vegwerks and The Eagle River Nature Center.

Call Will Taygan at 907-688-5288 or ERNC at 907-694-2108 for more information.

More upcoming events:

Nov 8, 2008 Sat 12:30pm – Hands-On Biodiesel Brewing
$49 Anchorage Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, $39 by Oct 8th.
Join us for a hands-on all-afternoon class to learn how to gather quality oil, test it for production, and make your own biodiesel to take home. Registration required. Call 907-688-5288 or email will@alaskabiodiesel.org for more information.

Veg My Ride, an excellent SVO Installation DVD.

October 5, 2008

Veg My Ride is probably the best DIY Installation Documentary out there.

I first saw the DVD a couple of years ago and was blown away.  Franklin Lopez from submedia.tv is one of the best independent-diy video producers out there, and Veg My Ride is better than many of those Sunday-morning Do-It-Yourself TV shows.

Rob del Bueno is a good-looking, well-spoken, educated and informative host, and his band Man or Astroman? provides a great indie-punk soundtrack to the show.

Rob uses a mix of parts from Greasel (now Golden Fuel Systems) and Neoteric Biofuels (now PlantDrive), and runs you through practically every step in the installation process.  He covers parts/tools, tanks, fuel and coolant hoses, wiring, priming the system, starting the car and even takes a look at other folk’s conversions.  Quite comprehensive.  The show runs just over an hour, and is about the right length to give you the visual walk through so you can pull off your own install.

My only critique is that SVO technology is advancing so quickly that the system installed is a bit dated.  Even so, if you upgraded the valves and filter, and maybe threw on a VOControl, you’d have a solid Mercedes 240D setup.

For all of you who want to “help” install a system and learn the nuts and bolts of SVO conversions, this is the DVD for you. Don’t believe me?  Check out this review at vegcar.net.

Need it today?  It’s $20 from vegmyride.tv.

Veg On!