Fuel handling for a modern wood gas car is going to be the major issue for public acceptability. Ideally the fuel should require little or no human handling and the ash and clinker should be disposed of in a user friendly manner. Here is one idea which could help to implement such a scheme. Imagine a 5 gallon drum made from cardboard , with steel endcaps, full of compressed sawdust. Down the centre of the drum is a cylindrical hole full of charcoal pieces. This could be a standard cartridge of fuel to be loaded into an automotive gasifier. The 5 gallon drum would hold enough compressed fuel to propel a vehicle from 60 to 100 miles, and remain of a size, shape and weight that is not too cumbersome for the average adult to handle. On loading, the centre of each endcap is pierced, the charcoal is ignited, and begins to burn from the centre outwards, producing heat which pyrolises (gasifies) the compressed sawdust. Sufficient air, and exhaust gases are introduced at the bottom of the can with the generated gas being collected at the top. When the full charge is consumed, the outer cardboard wall of the drum is burnt away, allowing the upper endcap to fall over the lower cap, forming a closed “tin” container with the ashes inside. At this point a new fuel canister could be added on top, and the process repeated until several canisters have been exhausted. This method would allow fuel to be handled in a compact, clean form and also allow the use of sawdust (otherwise wasted) to be used as a convenient fuel.

Average consumption of dried wood in a gasifier built and run by The Mother Earth News, consumed a pound to a pound and a half per mile traveled.  I’m not sure the “Average Man” can handle a drum the size of a 55 gallon drum, and since you say that the desired range would need to be 100 to 150 miles that makes the drum weigh 150 to 200 pounds.  I might add that their gasifier was mounted in the bed of a fullsize Chevy C-10 Pickup, and with ash cleaners needed to prevent gumming the engine as well as the  wood storage needed to travel, completely filled the bed. ( Mill ends, Hand size wood scraps, mostly hardwood, pine won’t do )  Just where did you plan to put this size load? I don’t think the average car can cope with this load.  And how do you plan to carry refill cannisters?

You may not have caught my first posting regarding the development of a C21 vehicle optimized to solid fuel propulsion. A Chevy C10 pickup is not noted for its fuel efficiency even running on gasoline, so the likelihood of it being a good vehicle to run on wood-gas are fairly remote!

Three reasons for this, big,big,big. – big vehicle – large frontal area, big tires – high rolling resistance, and big engine – used only at a fraction of its peak power and efficiency. I am thinking in terms of a lightweight vehicle optimized for highway use (not off-roading) fitted with a high efficiency hybrid power train.

My experiences with the AVT 100 electric vehicle showed that the vehicle could cruise at 60mph with just 10hp at the wheel.

A 25 litre drum of compressed charcoal will weigh in at around 13.5 kg (30lbs) and contain the same energy as 14 litres of gasoline. Even with a lousy fuel consumption equivalent to 10 miles per litre, (37 US mpg) the canister will return 140 miles. I had no notion of lugging around a 210 litre drum.

I’m not sure about the details, but I think this is the right SORT of idea. You’ve thought about reasonable range, actually I would go for 200 miles, about 3 hrs driving on clear roads, after that distance the driver needs refueling with coffee so there’s no problem about refuelling the car too. And you have produced a plausible way of handling solid fuel, though there may be others, such as having the fuel in paper bags, like sugar bags, or much smaller units of fuel, handled like machine-gun bullets. In the proposal here, are you proposing to use the gas in an internal combustion engine (in which case the heat of gasification is wasted) or as a 2-stage burn for supplying the heat for a Stirling engine. I will get round to working through your other posts, but I have taken the opportunity of this good weather to get the garden set for winter. And this morning the rain has set in!