Follow the Adventure
Questions and smart ass answers
Below are some of the answers
to some typical questions I get all the time.
- Q: If you are a
computer expert, why does your web site suck so badly?
A: Yes, my web sites are all lousy. I am a
back-end, behind the scenes web guy, not a girly-man,
pretty web site guy. My specialty is in the "nuts
and bolts" infrastructure that most people know very
little about. When I need to have a serious web
site built, I can hire any number of graphic
designers to make it look pretty. Maybe I should
have done that for this site?
- Q: Where do you
usually get your waste vegetable oil?
A: I usually try to get it from Chinese, all you
can eat buffets, which I have been told, are legally
required to be in every American Strip Mall.
- Q: Do you get the
oil for free?
A: Yes. So far, asking for a restaurant's
waste oil is still obscure enough that it is like asking
if I can have some of their trash. Of course, if
enough people start doing this, it will not be easy to
get, nor free, and I will have hated myself for ever
making a web site to promote it. I should note,
that I have, on occasion, bought pure, unused vegetable
oil in quantity from Costco, when I am first building or
testing a system. Once I am confident the system
is reliable, I can introduce the variable of unknown
dirty oil from unkown sources. The picture below is from
my first significant VO fill up. I did it on
virgin oil to test the system before I took on waste
- Q: Did anyone ever deny you their oil?
A: Only once, did a Wendy's manager (this means
18 year old, high school senior with pimples and bad
breath) not want to give me their oil. They said
that they had a contract with another person.
Apparently, it was some local freak who was running his
car on WVO?! Besides this, we never were refused
oil coast to coast and into Canada. We did,
however, refuse most oil we looked at. See question
- Q: Did you ever not take oil that was
A: Yes. At first, I pushed the limits of
the filtration and dewatering system to see exactly how
dirty I would be able to take on WVO. My test paid
off, as I took on the most vomitous, rancid fluids I
have ever seen, and it was not a good thing for Elbee.
After this experience, I learned to always examine the
oil closely before I stuck my hose into it.
Typical survial skill, I guess. Below is what "bad
oil" can look like.
Click here for a movie of
the first few fill ups and what happened...
- Q: Is your wife some type of saint to do this
project with you -- taking months longer than
anticipated, and never knowing if it would actually work
-- and not just take the kids with her and fly
back home to Providence?
A: Yes. Yes she is.
- Q: Why did you do all of this WVO stuff?
A: Many reasons. too many to list all of
them, but I love the idea that there is a clean burning,
domestic, renewable, fairly annoying waste product that
can be used to replace gasoline and oil, which America
is dependant on, like a junkie. I also think
driving on WVO is just plain funny. Seriously,
though, I could go on and on.
- Q: How much did the conversion process cost?
A: I am still paying for it, so I don't know. A
lot!. It depends on how you count it. The
raw aluminum, pumps valves heaters, fittings, cables and
secret ingredients in wholesale parts alone was about
$15K, but you can only begin counting there.... .
The cost Chris charged me for his and his
employees labor over the course of 6 weeks or so is not
something I care to discuss. I worked it out with
him after much talk about how fond he was of my middle
child. Lets just say it involves goats and land.
I should state for the record that he has told me on
numerous occasions, he will never do another one of
these type of installs again! Remember, even with
the huge cost of labor, Chris lost money on this
project, and did it, as I did, more as an art project
than a wise business decision. I respect him for
taking this on knowing full well he would regret it.
The cost of living in a bus with my family in it and
having to keep my kids and wife entertained while I had
to work on a computer project from hell for almost three
months; many thousands of dollars.
The cost of driving cross country together with your
family powered by vegetable oil, having successfully
shown your three children, your wife -- and
yourself, that Daddy was able to see the vision come
- Q: Will Frybrid make me a WVO RV too?
A: While I can not speak for Frybrid, I am fairly
certain the answer would be an unconditional NO.
- Q: Can you make me an RV like yours?
A: Technically, yes, but no. I am a skilled
welder, WVO inventor, electronics guy, and at this
point, I have a ton of experience with WVO RV's.
However, having first hand seen what it took to make
this conversion work, by people who do this every day --
I can not envision a business model where it would ever
be even close to financially prudent. As for some
crazy, rich guy, who does not care what it costs, my
response would be "Where is the art in this project.
It has already been done"
(All you crazy millionaires, send me all your wildly
generous offers to build you a WVO RV and I will see if
between Goodwin and I, we can't make another one of
these bad boys! Remember, every man has his price -
Except Goodwin, of course )
- Q: Are you looking for sponsors for Elbee?
I have a product or company that would love to tie in to
your next "tour"
- Q: Are you looking for investors for your
new, micro processor controlled Home Heating oil burner?
A: No, I don't think so. I am not taking it
that seriously. However, I am looking for more
computer consulting work. I am a web "backend"
guy. This is why my web sites all look like puss.
I have two left eyes! What I am good at is
developing new internet technology and kicking ass with
it. This is how I made my money, and I am pretty
certain that it is how I will continue to pay for food
and Elbee. WVO is simply a passion, like my music.