Xylene/Toluene into the Tank for octane boost. Bad Idea? - ClassicOldsmobile.com

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Old September 10th, 2009, 08:20 AM   #1
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Xylene/Toluene into the Tank for octane boost. Bad Idea?

Just want to gather the wisdom before I do or don't do an experiment:

I've been reading up on Octane boosters and come to the conclusion that many of those little bottles are blends of xylene, toluene and unspecified other stuff - perhaps lubricants.

I conclude these chemicals are a way to boost octane, but with the condition that the boosters are not more than 10 or 20% of the tank so you don't destroy rubber and other components.

So I have a gallon of Xylene and thought I'd put it in the tank and see if I can run more advanced timing. What do you all think?

Dumb idea?

thanks in advance

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Old September 10th, 2009, 08:39 AM   #2
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A while back I had a 50 dollar beater car with a 307 motor. I worked at a laminating shop for commercial cabinetry and we used toluene to clean up the laminate glue. All the toluene that was contaminated with used glue and wood chips would be poured in a disposal drum. I used to run it through a paint screen and into the poor little 307.

I wouldn't use it to try and bump your timing though.

If you want to go faster, build a faster motor is a good rule of thumb.
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Old September 10th, 2009, 08:58 AM   #3
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This guy says it's okay but do it at your own risk and be careful of rubber and plastics and yourself.

There is a mixing ratio chart for a few octane booster chemicals down the page.
It does boost octane.

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Old September 10th, 2009, 10:02 AM   #4
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So I have a gallon of Xylene and thought I'd put it in the tank
I've never heard that before. How do you get a gallon of Xylene anyways? Are you a chemist?

I would run it in the lawn mower before I put it in my Oldsmobile. Lawn mowers will run on anything.
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Old September 13th, 2009, 04:44 AM   #5
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Not a chemist...

Not a chemist. Sort of a banker. That's why I'm gathering conventional wisdom. Seems that Xylene and Toluene are ordinary ingredients in gas. I'm just looking for cheaper alternative to the $11 bottles of booster I use occasionally to boost octane a bit.

After a bit of googling, there are posts on most car brand forums about various homebrew octane boosters (Ford, Chevy, BMW, etc,etc). Reading these posts has made me curious about whether it will make my cars run a bit better, even if only for a tank or two.
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Old September 13th, 2009, 06:00 AM   #6
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Here is a formula on making your own octane boost

MAKE YOUR OWN OCTANE BOOSTHow to make your own octane booster (this is the basic formula of one of the popular octane booster products). To make eight 16 ounce bottles (128 oz = 1 gal):
100 oz of toulene for octane boost
25 oz of mineral spirits (cleaning agent)
3 oz of transmission fluid (lubricating agent)

This product is advertised as "octane booster with cleaning agent *and* lubricating agent!". Diesel fuel or kerosene can be substituted for mineral spirits and light turbine oil can be substituted for transmission fluid. Color can be added with petroleum dyes.

Here is a formula for blending fuel also - it is (#oct x gals) + (#oct x gals) / total gals = oct - an example using the (r+m)/2 rating and a ten gallon tank - we will figure the toluene to be 112 octane - (87 oct x 8.5 gals) + (112 oct x 1.5 gals) / 10 gals = 90.75 octane - simple as that!!

I've uses toluene for years as an octane boost - it makes up 15-20% of todays fuel - it use to be a higher percentage than that "back in the day" - 10% won't hurt a thing - personally I prefer to blend oxygenated (with MTBE) race fuel with pump gas - really brings a motor to life!! Click the image to open in full size.
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