Alpine diesel availability late at night?

iGlenn

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Jun 20, 2007
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Generally i find myself heading to Hotham (from Melbourne) late on a Friday or Saturday night. The last servo i see open is the BP/McDonalds at Glenrowan. They don't sell Alpine diesel afaik.

Does anyone know of somewhere (i'm guessing either a station at Myrtleford or Bright) that has 24 hr Alpine diesel?
 

currawong

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I think the caltex in Myrtleford has a machine for after hours, or at least it had one. you might want to ring them and double-check that it is still operating.

BTW the first servo in Mt Beauty (previously Pyles) also has an after hours machine.
 
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iGlenn

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Thanks, will keep Mt Beauty in mind for Falls trips.

I seem to recall the caltex having 24hr but it always looks so dark there when i go passed. Will check out again tonight. Worst case, i have 1200 cranking amps to get the bugger started tomorrow.
 

Seth

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You could always buy the additive to put in the tank separately.

In autumn the bp in bright didn't have it pre mixed and you had to add it in yourself.
 
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Shrek

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iGlenn said:
Worst case, i have 1200 cranking amps to get the bugger started tomorrow.
this indicates a misunderstanding of what alpine/winter diesel is.
normal diesel fuel starts to gel at about -5. it will not flow. Extra amps in the starter motor will not help if the fuel will not move from the tank to the fuel pump.
winter diesel remains liquid to much lower temps. 25% heating oil will give you the same effect.
 
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iGlenn

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Stopped into Caltex Myrtleford Saturday night. 24hr pay machine was out of order so no good. Also noticed that the pumps said regular diesel. Was signs up saying that the additive could be purchased in-store (doesn't help when they are closed).

Must be more margin in the additive than alpine diesel.

And Shrek, in marginal conditions having good batteries does make a difference. Completely gelled is another instance, but it was way too mild for that over the weekend.
 

Azz

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Shrek said:
this indicates a misunderstanding of what alpine/winter diesel is.
normal diesel fuel starts to gel at about -5. it will not flow.

I have learnt lots about diesel and waxing. Over three winters living at Dinner Plain and one camping trip on the Dargo High plains road in January.

After the January episode which happened to a mates cruiser, we did some testing.
We brought fuel from various servos in town and used a car fridge/freezer we could control temperature on to see what happened when.

Safeway fuel started to wax at +4.5 and we could not suck it through the inline filter that is in the fuel tank at 3 degrees.

Mobil, Shell and BP were good to 0 degrees and completely stopped flowing at -3.

The waxing starts around the edges of the container, similar to ice forming on a glass of water. When we tried to suck the fuel through the filter the waxing pulled onto the filter and blocked it amazing fast.

When living at Dinner Plain for seasons '07, '08 & '09 we could not get reliable Alpine Diesel on the Omeo side of the hill. When I say reliable, we were running two 4x4's, a 200 series cruiser and a '04 Hilux (last of old shape and engine)
If we filled the cruiser at any outlet on the Omeo side of the hill with "Alpine diesel" it would run like a pig, when it got below -2 would stop running completely.
Pete Canning would arrive with his heater and then the bloody computer would spit the dummy, requiring disconnection of the batteries to reset the computer. Once the computer had a problem, it would go into "safe mode" not allowing the engine to go above 2000rpm.

The Hilux would still run, just. Because a diesel fuel pump, pumps more fuel than consumed by the engine, it recirculates the unused fuel back to the tank, each time it goes around it gets a little more heat and will slowly correct itself.
The drive from DP to Hotham was enough to clear it out and the truck would be running fine again.

As we were on and off the mountain each week, we ended up just buying Shell fuel on the coast and putting our own additive in. Toyota told us, that by us putting the additive in ourselves we were voiding our warranty on the cruiser.

These days we can buy Alpine diesel at Safeway in Lakes Entrance and Bairnsdale and over the last three seasons have not had an issues with it at all.
We now run two diesels, a Hyundai i30 and a VW Amarok.
 
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Ubiquitous Steve

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Yes Claude Cat is right on. Get bottle of kero.They told me to add no more than 3percent by volume.It will thin your fuel and not harm your engine.Put it in before you drive up Hotham to allow it to mix and so is present all along to injectors of fuel system.
Also from Bunnings get foam insulation pipes and attach to fuel lines if possible to insulate them and if you like put wollen beanie around fuel filter in truck then place blankie over engine on side of fuel intake pipes to further protect from chill(when parked o/n) If your tank has stone protector maybe put insulation between stone guard and tank too!!
 

skinit

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Aug 25, 2011
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Hi all i have been reading with interest and i will put my 2 bobs worth in. i hope i will not get in trouble here but to bad
i am the local distributor for lucas cold weather extreme diesel treatment i am in bright at ovens valley parts centre (PM for details) if any one wants any we can organize.give me a call
with alpine mix from the servo and approx 400ml per 100lt of this you should be ok.
the big problem with freezing is the diesel that comes from the bass strait refinery has a low sulphar content which is the ingredient to help prevent freezing.Anyone who knows or knew peter canning he is suffering from motor nuerone and is not very well and he is living in porepunkah at the moment.
 
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Slushii

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---------------mod's note--------------
Hi Skinit,

Welcome to the forums! You won't get into trouble for contributing constructively to any of the forums. Thanks for your advice and tips re: diesel treatment, I'm sure our readers will appreciate that info.

However, please do not post contact details or phone numbers - instead, ask readers/members to send you a private message to obtain your contact details. To this end, I have deleted your phone number from your post above.

If you wish to advertise, there is a range of options including the noticeboard or ads - for these, I encourage you to contact the owners of this website/forums for more details.

--------end mod's note-----------------------

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I'm sorry to hear about Peter Canning, all the best to him and his family. There are forum members who know him personally.
 
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trappers

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What sad news
frown.gif
I have spent a lot of time with Peter ,as has most people who have spent time at Hotham. I have so many stories about my time with Peter it is not funny..., most not repeatable here for various reasons but all are good!
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Peter is atrue legend of Hotham
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I'll never forget the day I was stuck in DP at a party with no way home to get to my then girlfriend (now wife) who was similarly stuck at Hotham at about 3am. Peter gave me a lift home for a can of drink and the promise of a burbon at the genny. Or the timewewere at the gunny and he got a call about a buss that had gone over the edge near blowhard ...

I hope he is comfortable and with family and friends.
smile.gif
 
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skinit

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thanks for that advice slushi i will take on board i thought there was probably a better way.
to all that know peter i am sure will have many a tale to tell
and are right not to be printed hahaha.
he is as comfortable as possible but is not happy he is not on the hill but he he loosing all his strength and can not walk un assisted so the snow is not the right place for him at the moment.
jane his wife is caring for him and he is getting out and seeing a few of us in bright when he can.
we visit him regularly and he is still enjoying a beer.
 
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Slim

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If we filled the cruiser at any outlet on the Omeo side of the hill with "Alpine diesel" it would run like a pig, when it got below -2 would stop running completely.

Anyone with an update on Aline Diesel reliability on Omeo side? Anyone filled up this year and been ok in cold temps? if so what servo did you use? cheers
 
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Slim

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Thnaks Azz, what temps you been parked at with that fuel? Well into negs?
 

FlatLander

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Hi Slim ...what Azz says above, and on the Bright side I think all stations in Myrt and Bright stock alpine diesel.

Bearing in mind that retail Alpine mix is really only good down to about -2, due to legistration changes about 5-7 years ago and the amount of heating oil that can be added - or something like that.

If you aer going to spend more that a day or so in the mtns and forecast is for cold, then I would reccomend buying yourself some additive and throw in about 200ml to a full tank, more if you want as cant hurt.

You will never have an issue, and its cheap insurance.
 
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Slim

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cheers might go for that option. Considering 1st trek Omeo way with forecast looking a bit wild thurs night
 

The Plowking

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Azz said:
Bairnsdale Woolies / Caltex, no problems
The alpine diesel at the servo in Omeo was bollocks for me. Car wouldnt start last friday or saturday morning. Glad I didnt tempt fate parking in the day park and getting on snow quicker. Got it going later on.
Additive next time. Or Kero as per CC
 
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bdenny4

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The Plowking said:
Azz said:
Bairnsdale Woolies / Caltex, no problems
The alpine diesel at the servo in Omeo was bollocks for me. Car wouldnt start last friday or saturday morning. Glad I didnt tempt fate parking in the day park and getting on snow quicker. Got it going later on.
Additive next time. Or Kero as per CC

Hey PK, do you always drive the Omeo way to Hotham?
Reason I ask is I'm in Aspendale and always go Hume.
 
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The Plowking

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bdenny4 said:
The Plowking said:
Azz said:
Bairnsdale Woolies / Caltex, no problems
The alpine diesel at the servo in Omeo was bollocks for me. Car wouldnt start last friday or saturday morning. Glad I didnt tempt fate parking in the day park and getting on snow quicker. Got it going later on.
Additive next time. Or Kero as per CC

Hey PK, do you always drive the Omeo way to Hotham?
Reason I ask is I'm in Aspendale and always go Hume.
If heavy snow is forecast or to avoid rush hour city traffic, especially fridays.
Usually do a loop. Going via Omeo tomorrow night. Not a fan of GAR convoys....
 
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mr

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there is a 24 hr self service in Romeo selling alpine. just need to plug in amount and pay prior. in town, on right, half way
 

Xplora

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there is a 24 hr self service in Romeo selling alpine. just need to plug in amount and pay prior. in town, on right, half way
The 24hr servo in Omeo is now owned by the same people as the other and gets the same crap fuel that has let lots of people down. Buy some kero or some Lucas additive. Double dose the Lucas or 5% Kero. Lucas can be bought at the Auto Barn in Bairnsdale. When Mike and Karen owned this servo they always put additive into the diesel and we never had a problem. I never buy fuel in Omeo without adding more Lucas.
 
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mr

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I only use lucas additive myself...but i did answer a question to help a man out. Local politics are all yours! :)
 

Xplora

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I only use lucas additive myself...but i did answer a question to help a man out. Local politics are all yours! :)
Was not picking on your post just clarifying the current state of play with some local knowledge. The man you were helping bought fuel from the other place and got stuck so to buy it from the 24hr will only put him in the same position. Get it from there and add some Lucas by all means. I believe it may be highland or icebreaker diesel not true Alpine.
 
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Ubiquitous Steve

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In light of the diesel fracas .....it would be good if Consumer Affairs gave some direction to help consumers navigate thro the problem

Servos should be displaying clearly exactly what grade of fuel they are supplying ......should diesels get stuck at Hotham it will do the reputation of the business no good and will also harm the local towns reputation as well.
The Hotham Resort could also start making some noise too......Roads and carpark getting stuffed by immobile vehicles.RACV up and down like to Yo yos ....Flat topping vehicles out on Hotham Rd is not a brilliant idea either.

Hotham should also be making recommendations as to the grade of diesel that is suitable and the additives necessary to bring Melb diesel upto that grade..

Highlander,Icebreaker or Alpine ....how are the punters meant to understand that bullshit.
Obviously the locals in Omeo and Benambra know the story and know what additive is required .....Bears say you are selling fuel that is meant to be fit for the purpose..clearly it's not..........so the punters need some protection here from whatever Govt Dept that has responsibility in the area.
Bears do wonder if this is the so called Knowledge Nation or not....it can surely not be so difficult to help the public with whatever regulations that need tightening.

Maybe we need a recognised standard of diesel.......we suggest ..." Hotham Super Dupa Diesel" thence no further confusion will arise ...knowing it is fit for purpose down to minus ten or thereabouts!:emoji_face_palm::emoji_face_palm:
 

Charlie

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I just spent 4 hours thawing vehicles on Baw Baw
Only one I couldn't fix was a rodeo, managed to get it running reasonably quickly, but it kept blowing hose connections on the return line, which was frozen and I couldn't get to it
Said vehicle is stuck on hill until the road is totally free of ice, RACV won't send tow truck up after scary ride down previous day
The Rodeo driver said he filled up a full tank at a servo that advertised Alpine Diesel???
 

Ubiquitous Steve

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Good work Charlie....it's becoming a huge debarkle this season.
With the correct additive or kero to thin the diesel it should be no problem unless the Melb Diesel or Alpine Diesel has different specs than previous years....

I was almost going to suggest a "hot shed" at Hotham were diesel Vehicles get towed to and then warmed in a forty deg C environment but that sounded a bit "silly"but now I am starting to wonder if it wasn't such a silly idea after all.

It's beyond a joke.....so many vehicles getting stuffed up.
And with right fuel it's should not be a problem ....others can suggest what action needs to be taken by whom?
If I was working on a Resort ticket office I would be telling diesel drivers to put in additive ....and have some stuff in the office to sell them....and make them idle engine for fifteen mins at least.
 

Charlie

Still the most depraved poster here
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Good work Charlie....it's becoming a huge debarkle this season.
With the correct additive or kero to thin the diesel it should be no problem unless the Melb Diesel or Alpine Diesel has different specs than previous years....

I was almost going to suggest a "hot shed" at Hotham were diesel Vehicles get towed to and then warmed in a forty deg C environment but that sounded a bit "silly"but now I am starting to wonder if it wasn't such a silly idea after all.

It's beyond a joke.....so many vehicles getting stuffed up.
And with right fuel it's should not be a problem ....others can suggest what action needs to be taken by whom?
If I was working on a Resort ticket office I would be telling diesel drivers to put in additive ....and have some stuff in the office to sell them....
I suggested this very thing to the guys at the Baw Baw intersection, a certain money spinner, but so far, nothing!
BTW, I believe the RACV has banned tow trucks on the Hotham road too, until further notice.
 
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Ubiquitous Steve

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We see FlatLander's post that....minus two maybe the limit for so called Alpine Diesel after some changes to legislation some years ago...if that is the case then it's a real worry if Alpine Diesel alone will not cut the mustard in our Alps....the pulblic are being sold short by the authorities,petrol stations and the manufacturer of the product.
And the Resorts obviously must be aware a problem exists.Buller,Hotham,Falls Ck Baw. Baw so they should be shouldering some responsibility to advise their customers of the possibility that Alpine Diesel may not be sufficient alone.
 

neilmny

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You'd only have to live in Coldstream for a -2 limit to be useless.
 

Ubiquitous Steve

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Well I am certainly not across the specifics of Alpine Diesel but the winter is producing many diesels that don't like the cold as the fuel has jelled....so there is a problem .We see break downs across the Vic Alps.It is not as if we are seeing minus 15 or more.
 

telecrag

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Must be a Vic thing, have not heard of any problems in NSW alps.
 

mr

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i think when spring thaw actually comes, and they dig them out, they might find a few NSWelshman diesel cars @telecrag
 

Ubiquitous Steve

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:emoji_anguished:I googled Alpine Diesel and it's very confusing.......it doenot seem like anybody will readily find out what negative temperature the Alpine Diesel they buy will go down to before waxing occurs at the cloud temp!

So I will continue to bang in half a litre of kero even with its blue dye into my tank regardless of what I fill up with or where I obtain it from.

And I am sticking with the insulation I use to as much of the system I can get my hands on.

Certainly Charlie has hands on experience in getting them to run.......
And I will continue to put a blankey in the engine bay when I put it to sleep.

Maybe one could run some metho onto the splash pan under the engine and light it like they do to the bar at Kittens ..............:emoji_anguished:
 

Xplora

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Highlander,Icebreaker or Alpine ....how are the punters meant to understand that bullshit.
Obviously the locals in Omeo and Benambra know the story and know what additive is required .....Bears say you are selling fuel that is meant to be fit for the purpose..clearly it's not..........so the punters need some protection here from whatever Govt Dept that has responsibility in the area.
Bears do wonder if this is the so called Knowledge Nation or not....it can surely not be so difficult to help the public with whatever regulations that need tightening.

Maybe we need a recognised standard of diesel.......we suggest ..." Hotham Super Dupa Diesel" thence no further confusion will arise ...knowing it is fit for purpose down to minus ten or thereabouts!:emoji_face_palm::emoji_face_palm:
There is a recognised standard for diesel - you can read about it here.
https://infostore.saiglobal.com/store/PreviewDoc.aspx?saleItemID=354727 or google AS 3570-1998

Extract
This Standard was prepared by Standards Australia Committee CS/48, Automotive Diesel Fuel to supersede AS 3570—1988. This edition specifies a new set of limits for cloud point in order to provide better control of vehicle operability in cold conditions by more closely matching the fuel specification limits to the fuel distribution areas and the local weather patterns in those areas. The new limits for cloud point were developed not only following detailed computer analysis of long term weather data (‘Climatic Averages Australia’) provided by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology but with a more conservative allowance above the 14 percentile minimum temperature. Although the new specification is still based on cloud point it has taken into account that some refineries have been successful in the use of wax modifiers to reduce Cold Filter Plugging Point. The main benefit to consumers is the inclusion of 12 supply regions and 12 (monthly) periods. Regional boundaries have been re-drawn to ensure that each supply point delivers the required grade into its appropriate region at the appropriate time. A winter season lead time has also been incorporated. Accordingly, diesel fuel used within two or three months from the date of supply should not present cold weather operability problems. The specification recognizes cold weather problem locations and indeed the list in this edition has been extended. The terms ‘normative’ and ‘informative’ have been used in this Standard to define the application of the appendix to which they apply. A ‘normative’ appendix is an integral part of a Standard, whereas an ‘informative’ appendix is only for information and guidance.

Benambra is supplied true Alpine diesel (this from the tanker driver) delivered by United who also do the farm bulk contracts in the Omeo area. Not sure who supplies Omeo. Yes it is a joke and has been for many years i.e. this servo is supplying fuel not to the standard of Alpine diesel. All the locals are aware of it. Highland diesel is a term used by Caltex and they also use a product called ROX as an additive. Some Biodiesel is produced in Australia and United have purchased a refinery to do that but 3 crude oil refineries in Australia have closed recently and Australia now imports more fuel than it makes. This is sourced from Japan, Sth Korea (who get their crude from the Middle East) and Singapore. All of the imported fuel must meet the standard as well as Commonwealth legislation (Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000).

Something is clearly wrong with fuel coming into Victorian suppliers. Now I could say it was not the fault of the servo operator but given the number of complaints regarding the fuel in Omeo over the years you would think something would be done by the owner. Yes it is likely there are avenues for complaint to an authority but I just refuse to buy fuel there and have no problem naming and shaming stations not supplying what is advertised. A forum such as this could set up a page where people can also list stations providing quality product.
 
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