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  1. #41
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    759
    Location
    Trent Hills, ON
    Tractor
    Kioti DK40SE HST

    Default Re: Use of ether for starting

    Quote Originally Posted by JohninCT View Post
    I use starting fluid on gas engines all the time... weed wacker, push lawnmower, chain saw. If they sit around and won't start after a half dozen or so pulls a little squirt of starting fluid gets them going. Never experienced any knocking, explosions, etc. Maybe I'm just lucky.
    I use it liberally on my old motors for the first start of the season, the 25 year old lawnboy and the really old B&S rototiller. No issues so far but those motors are a bit worn anyways. I won't use it on my 372xp, but it starts pretty easily.
    I use to use it on my old snowmobile too, with no bad experiences. I'm sure it wasn't great for the motors but if I got 50 hours of running a year in, I was lucky.
    2011 DK40SE HST

  2. #42
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    40
    Location
    ND
    Tractor
    Case IH DX25E, Case 444, JD440I, JD510

    Default Re: Use of ether for starting

    What I will say here is probably ancient history, for I have not seen it done in 30 years. When I worked construction in the oil fields we left equipment out overnight at the location. When actual temps are from zero to 40 below F, some engines simply will not start, with or without ether.

    What we had was water jumper hoses. We tee'd into the cab heater circuit of our pickup with pioneer hydraulic quick disconnects. Each end of the jumper hoses had the QD's. On the diesel engine we wanted to start, we had similar connections so we could get water to flow through the block.

    So what we did was drive close to the cat or backhoe, connect the jumpers, sit back in the pickup and watch the pickup engine temp guage. The temp guage would immediatey drop to it's coldest position. After about 15 - 20 minutes the temp guage would be close to normal. We'd then get into the equipment and the engines would fire right up.

    I used this system on my own truck mounted snow blower, which had a chevy six for the truck and a pontiac V8 for the blower.

    I also worked for a oil rig moving company where the boss told new drivers if they were caught with a can of ether they'd be fired on the spot.

  3. #43
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,252
    Location
    Balls Creek, NC
    Tractor
    New Holland 1720

    Default Re: Use of ether for starting

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Fowler View Post
    I have to agree here. Many farm tractors had ether systems for starting rather than glow plugs. IIRC our 9000 Ford had one and the operators manual warned not to push the button more than 2 seconds. It usually started without any starting fluid (ether) unless it was bitter cold in Louisiana which means below freezing. Excess of anything is bad, even water can kill you if you drink too much.
    That is true for our 1984 8050 AC. We hardly ever use either due to the southern climate.

  4. #44
    Gold Member Buckgnarly's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    466
    Location
    West topsham VT
    Tractor
    Kioti DS3510

    Default Re: Use of ether for starting

    Quote Originally Posted by ilander View Post

    I used this system on my own truck mounted snow blower, which had a chevy six for the truck and a pontiac V8 for the .
    Oh we GOTTA see a thread with pics about this!

  5. #45
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    4,044
    Location
    Holland, PA
    Tractor
    Kubota L5740, Case IH 255, Gravely 8199G

    Default Re: Use of ether for starting

    So what we did was drive close to the cat or backhoe, connect the jumpers, sit back in the pickup and watch the pickup engine temp guage. The temp guage would immediatey drop to it's coldest position. After about 15 - 20 minutes the temp guage would be close to normal. We'd then get into the equipment and the engines would fire right up.

    what a smart idea. Bring your own heat...
    No thermal shock to the truck engines going cold so fast? I wonder if they shivered...
    2012 Kubota L5740HSTC3 with FEL and Long grapple, 1986 Case IH 255, Land Pride PD10 PHD, Land Pride RCR60 & RCF2084 mowers, Land Pride 4' box blade and rear rake, Fred Cain subsoiler, County Line potato plow, County Line 1 bottom plow, 1986 Gravely 8199G with tow behind DR rototiller, 50" deck+40" Gravely wing mower, Gravely snowblower, Swisher 44 rough cut mower,Ariens snowblower, Echo 450-18 & 600-24, Echo PPT280, 2006 JD LX280, , 1968 Cub Cadet 125, Husky-Speeco 35 ton splitter

  6. #46
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    40
    Location
    ND
    Tractor
    Case IH DX25E, Case 444, JD440I, JD510

    Default Re: Use of ether for starting

    Buck: Sorry, no pics of any of this, it dates back to the late 70's/early 80's and we never though to take pics of the water jump system. I do have pics of the old snowblower, but don't know where. The blower unit was 8 ft wide, 4 ft high, could blow snow 50-60 feet away. Powered by a 1957 347 ci pontiac V8. The truck was a 1942 chevy 4wd army truck.

    daugen: Nope, no thermal shock on the pickup. But what this did do was eliminate all that clatter and banging those old diesels did when started that cold. If you were lucky enough to get one started that cold without preheat, they'd miss on one or two cylinders and pump out clouds of grey smoke until warmed up.

    When I was a kid, my dad's Austin-Western motor grader would miss on a couple cylinders when it was that cold and put out perfect smoke rings from the muffler. What he did was have a drive shaft connected from the pto of a tractor to the motor grader engine with a slip clutch and rotate it that way until started. It was complicated and dangerous, he only used it one winter. The slip clutch did not work once and when the motor grader started it over rev'd the tractor - so that was the end of that idea. The hot water idea was much simpler, cheaper and safer, but he never thought of it.

  7. #47
    R.I.P.
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    5,883
    Location
    North Carolina
    Tractor
    Kubota BX2200

    Default Re: Use of ether for starting

    Quote Originally Posted by ilander View Post
    What I will say here is probably ancient history, for I have not seen it done in 30 years. When I worked construction in the oil fields we left equipment out overnight at the location. When actual temps are from zero to 40 below F, some engines simply will not start, with or without ether.

    What we had was water jumper hoses. We tee'd into the cab heater circuit of our pickup with pioneer hydraulic quick disconnects. Each end of the jumper hoses had the QD's. On the diesel engine we wanted to start, we had similar connections so we could get water to flow through the block.

    So what we did was drive close to the cat or backhoe, connect the jumpers, sit back in the pickup and watch the pickup engine temp guage. The temp guage would immediatey drop to it's coldest position. After about 15 - 20 minutes the temp guage would be close to normal. We'd then get into the equipment and the engines would fire right up.

    I used this system on my own truck mounted snow blower, which had a chevy six for the truck and a pontiac V8 for the blower.

    I also worked for a oil rig moving company where the boss told new drivers if they were caught with a can of ether they'd be fired on the spot.
    I like your story. I have often wondered whether in some climates, whether the waste heat of a back-up generator could be put into the dwelling through a similar method. Pull up with the tractor and PTO generator, hook up the power leads and the water hoses, and go to powering and heating the dwelling.
    Which is bigger?: a) $100 per month since the Big Bang or b) the US National Debt.

  8. #48
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    40
    Location
    ND
    Tractor
    Case IH DX25E, Case 444, JD440I, JD510

    Default Re: Use of ether for starting

    EE-Bota: With the cost of fuels now, putting to use any of that waste heat is a good idea and worth rigging up something like you mention to get that heat into a building.

    Which brings to light another story. I worked at a Air Force facility once that had a standby generator in a room off to the side. The exhaust was piped outside. The heat pulled from the radiator heated that room quite warm, and a door could be opened to the rest of the building. It was very noisy, but warm. Your idea is better and safer by bringing the warm water only into the building. There would be little noise and no chance of exhaust gas poisoning.

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