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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Perhaps this topic is a dead horse.
But, as a new rider, it's difficult to make this decision without some advice.

Let's say we are riding a vintage bike, from the 70's, and the bike was 100% cleaned out and has only been running ethanol free fuel since then. Then, lets say we're planning a bit of a long distance trip in mostly wilderness areas, such as 100 miles or more, in one fell swoop, then a return trip of the same amount.

Finding gas stations with ethanol free fuel will be tough in mountainous areas. However, it is possible but it will add some extra bunches of miles.

I have heard that ethanol does it's dirtiest work when let sitting for a while. But how long does that mean?

What if for our trip, we started with a full tank of ethanol-free and burned all the way through it on most of the first leg but decided to stop and fill up at a E10 gas station before pushing the limits and just before arriving that evening, knowing that we're just going to go right ahead and burn that fuel the very next morning on return trip. Then, the next morning we do in fact just head right back and burn most of it but then close to home we fill up again with an ethanol-free gas station.

We have some small amount of ethanol in our gas now once we've arrived home. And, we had a whole tank of E10 in our bike sitting overnight that one night.

Did we did damage? Or because it was pretty muted burned right away, is this a moot concern?
 

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I usually run ethanol free fuel in my bikes if at all possible. I have two 15 gallon portable fuel tanks with pump nozzles and 10' hoses in the shed that I use for local riding. They serve a dual purpose, for the generator during hurricane season. On long trips, I use this site. You just select the state that your riding in and it will list all ethanol free gas stations and locations on the map https://www.pure-gas.org/maps . There are a lot more out there than people think. Most marinas also sell ethanol free fuel for boats, so when I go to the Smoky Mountains, several times I have filled up at one of the many marinas at the larger lakes in North Carolina and Tennessee when riding the rural areas of the mountains.
 

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Mine is a 77 and run 87oct in mine, when in Colorado I can find 85. I don't let them sit with out marine type Stabil in it's tank of more than a few days and have had zero issues even after it sat for 6 months. I think your worrying too much just RTS.
 

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I've run both on big bikes and small, short trips and long -- for me the ethanol gets a few percent lower MPG, but otherwise no serious issues cruising -- all my bikes have (and will remain) carburated, so the engine isn't able to compensate -- I did rejet the Harley a tad richer when I didn't have anything but ethanol , but that was partly for other concerns... The main issue is don't let the ethanol stuff stagnate in the system unless you like cleaning/rebuilding fuel systems... as soon as I get back to where the non-ethanol gas is available, I try to run a tank or so through, especially if the bike is going to sit... the gas stabilizers help, but in my experience aren't bullet proof... best to run non-ethanol, but no panic if you have to temporarily...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks everyone.
This is going to sound overboard but since i've just flushed out the system, involving a physically intensive tank interior clean out, and am trying to preserve the work done for as long as rationally possible...
Maybe it would be beneficial in the long term to always have a few ounces of Sta-Bil stored under the seat to put in tanks while filling up on E10 occasionally? I'm just thinking about gradual gradual gradual buildup in the system. Maybe adding that extra component each time would allow for several years of occasional E10 in the system without causing as much slow harm as without the Sta-Bil added with it each time.
 

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I try to use Ethanol free as much as I can, but if you gotta get gas on a long trip you gotta get gas no matter what it is.
I just make sure that when I am back, I fill up with Ethanol free.
Also when I put the bike up for the winter I make sure to use Ethanol free.

Robert
 

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I use sta-bil in every tank. There may be pure gas somewhere near here but I don't know where. Even the marinas don't have it and they get pi$$ed if you ride out on the fuel pier looking for it.
 

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I like Sta-Bil and if I put the bike up for the winter it will have it in it. But I was just wondering if using a carburetor/fuel injector cleaner would work just as well? I think STP and Lucus makes some as well as other manufacturers and the point is to keep the fuel system clean. Just a few ounces every other tankful or something like that. :)
 

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I almost exclusively ride crusty old bikes and finding ethanol-free fuel in my area is just not worth it. So all my bikes get ethanol, all the time. You'll spend a half tank of fuel just getting to the ethanol-free station! I just occasionally run a can of carb cleaner in my tank and all is good. :)
 

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I ride a '78 Suzuki GS1000E. I run the cheapest low octane fuel I can find and it is usually E10. Not the slightest problem. Sta-Bil destroyed the tank on my parts bike (a lot of it became a solid). I guess when it was parked the tank was full. I use Star Tron. It is considered a fuel and can not harm the bike. My bike was parked for almost two years after my knee replacement in a metal building with some fuel in the tank. The only problem was the petcock diaphragm O-ring got stuck. Freed it up and greased it with dielectric grease so it moved freely and she started right up. Most of the boat guys down here use Star Tron and they abuse their fuel more than most.
 

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I ride a '78 Suzuki GS1000E. I run the cheapest low octane fuel I can find and it is usually E10. Not the slightest problem. Sta-Bil destroyed the tank on my parts bike (a lot of it became a solid). I guess when it was parked the tank was full. I use Star Tron. It is considered a fuel and can not harm the bike. My bike was parked for almost two years after my knee replacement in a metal building with some fuel in the tank. The only problem was the petcock diaphragm O-ring got stuck. Freed it up and greased it with dielectric grease so it moved freely and she started right up. Most of the boat guys down here use Star Tron and they abuse their fuel more than most.
Never heard of this ever, prior to you. Which Sta-bil did this happen with and did you put it in the tank? Or did someone else say thy placed it in the tank?
 

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I bought it from the owner of a body shop. He had kept it in his shop for years. He told me he had treated the gas with Sta-bil when it was parked. I have no idea which type it was or how much he used. I had to drill the lock to remove the gas cap. It was filled with solid chunks of brown crud and the tank was Swiss cheese. The rings to hold the tank on the rubber bumpers were even rusted off. I kept it for a form, but ended up buying a 1980 new in stock tank. The reliability of previous owners could always be in question though, so to be accurate, I really do not know for sure.
 

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Sta-bil is only good for a supposed year. I used it for 2 years to store my car and my bike when I went to Korea. No problems, but I could tell the gas was very soured. If he put it in there and it sat for years well there is limits to how much protection sta-bil can do.

A lot of people use transmission fluid in conjunction with sta-bil due to the properties of the oil and it coats things and helps prevent the ethanol from getting that crusty white residual stuff on the aluminum surfaces since leaded fuel had gone away. (sorry not familiar with this procedure or what it actually does)
 
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That soured me on Sta-bil so I went looking for an alternative. I Found Star Tron and I have never looked back. I have a friend, I should say a brother that is an amazing mechanic and Harley rider, very set in his ways. I introduced it to him and now it is all he will use. I have to say in small machinery it is quite good. Since I started using it in all my gas I have not had to rebuild a carburetor on anything. That used to be a chore every couple of years with weed eaters, chain saws and lawnmowers, and my motorcycle. Those 41 year old Mikuni VM carburetors were particularly prone to getting clogged up if they sat for any period of time (not anymore). :smile_big:
 

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I have a chipper, a rough terrain mower, and a leaf shredder that get run only once or twice a year. All, of course, have carbs. I have found that I can leave ethanol gas in the tanks without any fuel preservative and have no problems as long as I run the carburetors dry (shut-off valve in the fuel lines). If gas sits in the float bowls for a year a gummy mixture of gas and water forms in the bottom. I also have a generator that may not get used at all during the year, so each fall I drain the gas and refill with fresh gas with Stabil added.

My son and I also restored a 1965 Mustang that may sit for several winter months without being started, and we have no problems using ethanol gas.

What I'm saying is that 10% ethanol, at least, is not that big a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
What about for a week? Lets say we're just letting the bike sit with a full tank of E10 for a week in the garage, without any additives. Theoretically might some gunk/buildup occur VS if it was used up over the next 24 hrs?
This conversation is certainly making me want to order up some Star Tron and keep it under the seat.
 

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If I remember correctly Star Tron will stabilize fuel up to two years. An Evinrude forum sold me on it. Their inboards were having a stalling problem. Star Tron sent them each a bottle. It cured the stalling problem and the users also said their transoms were staying clean and not turning black. With fuel tanks the size those boats have there is no way they don't abuse their fuel more than most.
 

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I buy fuel in bulk. By that I mean I buy 350 gallons at a time. No way I can used that in a few weeks. So I'm forced to use a stabilizer. I used to use Sta-bil but it just took too much to treat that amount. I found and have been using Pri-G for gasoline and Pri-D for diesel for that last 15 years. I assumed Pri-G and Sta-Bil were similar and they are but they are also different. But even though I've started weed-eaters and chainsaws that haven't been used for 2 or 3 years, they fired right up. But I also use Star-Tron on a tank of fuel twice a year just to be on the safe side on my bikes. Or on one tank on anything used on those rare once every year or two types. I have diesel fuel that's every bit of 5 years old and still working just fine. So there must be a fundamental difference chemically between Sta-Bil and Pri-G or D. I've just never looked at MSDS information on the products. You would think if anyone would be having trouble it would be me with some of the tools I have not getting used for years. I hate work you know.:grin:
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I buy fuel in bulk. By that I mean I buy 350 gallons at a time. No way I can used that in a few weeks. So I'm forced to use a stabilizer. I used to use Sta-bil but it just took too much to treat that amount. I found and have been using Pri-G for gasoline and Pri-D for diesel for that last 15 years. I assumed Pri-G and Sta-Bil were similar and they are but they are also different. But even though I've started weed-eaters and chainsaws that haven't been used for 2 or 3 years, they fired right up. But I also use Star-Tron on a tank of fuel twice a year just to be on the safe side on my bikes. Or on one tank on anything used on those rare once every year or two types. I have diesel fuel that's every bit of 5 years old and still working just fine. So there must be a fundamental difference chemically between Sta-Bil and Pri-G or D. I've just never looked at MSDS information on the products. You would think if anyone would be having trouble it would be me with some of the tools I have not getting used for years. I hate work you know.:grin:
So you're meaning that Pri-G takes a lot less of a ratio/quantity vs treating the same amount of gas as Sta-Bil? You're putting Pri-G in your super mega 350Gal canister and it doesn't require like a gallon $$$ of the stuff?
Since i'm now feeling OCD about preserving the tank cleanout i just did (pic of resulting wash out. and yes i got it to repeatedly turn out crystal clear fluids by the end), I am leaning towards adding even literally just a squirt / half-ounce of something to each E10 tank i put in just be in the habit of it so that things stay nice for a long time to come. But based on what y'all are saying, i'm probably overkilling it!
 

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