Fueling tractor

   / Fueling tractor #82  
What you guys find to be the better way of fuel transfer to get away from lifting 5 gal jugs to fill tractor
Don’t use enough for 50 gal drum with pump
Use drum with drain hose, no pump.
   / Fueling tractor #83  
What you guys find to be the better way of fuel transfer to get away from lifting 5 gal jugs to fill tractor
Don’t use enough for 50 gal drum with pump
I have a plastic (lighter weight) 55 gallon drum with a hand cranked rotary pump (Harbor Freight) that I take to the fuel dealer a couple of times a year. I put in 25-30 gallons each time because that's about the max weight an old guy (78) like me can manage down the ramps from my pickup truck on a dolly. That much is too little to have delivered, but enough to bush hog about 3 acres every couple of weeks throughout the growing season, and plow a few hundred yards of driveway a few times a year. Each bush hog session, it takes about 50 cranks to refill the tank. This is a "vintage" MF35 with Perkins diesel.
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   / Fueling tractor #84  
I also found lifting the 5 gallon cans a real chore so went to two 15 gallon poly drums and hand pump. The pump has a 6 ft. hose which is plenty long enough and I strapped the drums to dollys so moving around the barn is simple, and refilling the drums with 5 gallon cans is easy.
   / Fueling tractor #85  
Well, I'll be 90 in November and I can still lift 5 gal diesel atop the tractor. I put a boat cushion on the metal and a red plastic funnel into the fillup, then tilt the yellow jug to fill. By the time no more diesel runs out, the jug is light enough to levitate sufficient to finish the job.

I will admit that, like everything, it's a lot harder than with my former 1970s International Harvester 284. There was an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal recently: "A Tractor Shouldn't Cost the Farm to Fix." I never saw such a badly designed piece of machinery as the Mahindra. Even checking the oil is the work of a quarter-hour.
   / Fueling tractor #86  
I use a siphon with hand primer from an outboard fuel hose. Set the 5 gallon jug on the hood, run siphon hose from jug to tank, pump it a couple times and it's running. Takes about 3 mins to drain the jug.
   / Fueling tractor #87  
I use a couple of 55 gal barrels with a small 13gpm flow-rite for Diesel - use 1-2 barrels red fuel a year - and an IBC tote (275 gal) filled w/~150 gal for unleaded also w/a 13 gpm flow-rite but with auto nozzle (wife wouldn't use manual nozzle). I usually have the co-op fill the unleaded every 6 weeks or so but at the beginning of this year I filled the tote to the brim.

As far as used tanks are concerned. There was a post stating they are readily available and cheap. I've noticed here in Arkansas anyway, that since the election, the used ones are neither available or reasonable. Most farmers I know are buying up as many as they can find and have been stockpiling fuel.

IBC totes (around here) are ~$45 for either 275 or 330 gal versions - 330 gal will need a longer suction tube. I cut a hole next to the large fill cap that will fit a 2" chase nipple, with a homemade washer and gas rated putty, in from the inside of the tote (why it's next to the 6" cap) and fix it in place with a 2" rigid coupling. The 13 gpm has a 2" npt (typically used to attach to bung hole) that will easily attach to coupling - suction tube is 1" so it will easily fit through coupling/chase as well. The large (6") cap has a built in bung hole with a vented bung plug.

And before anyone states the obvious, yes, I know IBC totes aren't rated for fuel, and Yes I know PVC parts can swell in gasoline. But this has been working well for 10 years without any leaking. I do have a spare tote just in case and my "fuel farm" (diesel & unleaded) is stored in my pass thru barn that doesn't have doors (60 x 125 w/two, 30' door openings - one on each 60' side) so it has plenty of air flow. The pumps are hooked up to a small agm battery that has a solar charger/maintainer - wifey didn't like having to open the hood (to hook on to battery) to get gas in her car. Total cost of pumps, filters, battery, solar panels & storage containers under $500 this year (had to replace both pumps and found a really good deal on these) and less than $350 ten years ago. Maintenance items (filters, seals, pump overhaul kits etc) average $50/year. Buying red fuel and unleaded before the massive price increase this year saved over $250 already - I bought 200 unleaded @ $1.72, current price is $2.69 & 100 red fuel @ $2.35, currently $3.15. Buying in bulk over the last 10 years saved over $3,500. Not having to haul tanks to from co-op (fuel/labor) saves ~$100/year. Co-op gives 10% discount & free delivery if total fuel is over 150 gal.

Might not be for everyone, but our closest regular gas station is 20 miles away and charges a premium price (currently over $3/gal), the co-op is 25 miles away.

If you are really concerned about storage issues, consider putting in some fuel conditioner - I'd only consider that for unleaded, diesel should be good for a period of years as compared with gas at 6 months or so.

Just my 2 cents
   / Fueling tractor #88  
Just use an el cheapo HF battery powered pump in the 5 gallon jugs. Sure, it's slow but I am in no hurry.
I use the same kind of pump & I have 2 of them 1 for fuels Gas & Diesel & the other one for water, Make sure to remove batteries when not being used, They could corrode! & they are cheap & easy to use.
   / Fueling tractor #89  
Gravity plus fuel = bad idea.

Some years back one of the major aircraft engine manufacturers had a building way out in the woods where they could test run engines and not annoy anyone with the noise. They had a 500 gallon tank of AvGas on the roof, with a copper fuel line leading down to the test cell. Copper eventually gets brittle from vibration . . .

One fine day, the copper line broke upstream of the shut-off valve. Alas, there's no way to turn off gravity, and the entire building and contents promptly and enthusiastically burned right to the ground.

Gravity feeds for fuel systems are easy and cheap (gravity is free), but I'd prefer a little more complexity so I can shut off the fuel flow if something breaks.

Nowadays, spilling a few hundred gallons of diesel on the ground often winds up involving the EPA, and the few hundred gallons of wasted fuel becomes the very least of your problems.

There is no appeal with the law of gravity, you can't get a continuance, you can't get a pardon (from anyone), it ALWAYS works. Be careful ;-)

Best Regards,

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   / Fueling tractor #90  
What you guys find to be the better way of fuel transfer to get away from lifting 5 gal jugs to fill tractor
Don’t use enough for 50 gal drum with pump
This works great for me, turn the pump handle in reverse to suck fuel out of the 5 gallon cans.