Watch people convert a diesel engine to burn gasoline



  • Garage 54 addresses some of the strangest automotive questions you never thought you would have to answer.
  • The Garage 54 team converts a Toyota diesel engine to run on gasoline.
  • The team tests the diesel engine before modifying it to use all the hardware required to run gasoline.

    Gasoline and diesel engines are similar in many ways: both use internal combustion to move pistons, which then move a crankshaft that changes the direction of that energy. The hardware is also largely similar. Though there is important differences in the way these engines generally operate, and huge differences in what each respective fuel likes inside the combustion chamber. As such, it’s generally difficult to run an engine on fuel that it basically wasn’t designed to burn. Well, the mad scientists at Garage 54 are trying to do just that, exactly the way you’d expect.

    For those who do not know the crazy adventures of Garage 54, the team got down to see-through engine covers to show us how oil works in an engine, welded two cars together and put hilarious undersized wheels and tires on a Hummer. This wacky YouTube channel has touched on some interesting issues but has yet to touch on an engineering experience like this.

    The folks at Garage 54 are testing the compression of a Toyota diesel-powered four-cylinder engine, only to find that it has at least a damaged cylinder. Even with this damaged cylinder, this diesel engine has far too much compression so that the gasoline does not explode. The Garage 54 team then dismantles the engine to measure the combustion chambers. Reduce an engine static compression ratio is easy on paper. Basically you need to make more space between the piston and the combustion chamber. You can solve this problem by replacing the pistons, changing the cylinder head, or thicker cylinder head gaskets. Of course, best-case scenarios rarely happen in the Garage 54 workshop, and the team decided to modify their engine pistons to lower the compression ratio.

    Garage 54 too had to solve two other problems: induction and spark. Older diesel engines use fuel to control engine speed and do not have a carburetor or throttle body. Diesel engines too lack of spark ignition. Clever reuse of some Lada intake manifolds and a Lada distributor solved these issues, at least academically.

    Now the big question: does it work? Well check out the video above to take advantage of all the chaos and see if this old diesel burner can run on a different type of fuel.

    Have you ever tried a wacky engine experience? Tell us about your wildest internal combustion dreams below.

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