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That tractor looks suspiciously like a converted car with a wood gasifier as a fuel source. Interestingly, when I taught Introductory Physical Science back in the late '60s, which was a lab based curriculum, one of the experiments involved heating wood splints in a test tube with a glass tube delivering the products into a bottle with water. One of the chief products was methyl alcohol as vapor, but that was after condensation. It would likely have been possible to run a small internal combustion engine off the evolved gas with a proper carburetor. The other main product was charcoal in the tube, which was almost impossible for me to completely clean. Those test tubes got set aside for the same experiment the next year.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Jul 30th, 2012 at 05:46:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
with that kind of experience have you thought of making biochar for your garden soil?

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Mon Jul 30th, 2012 at 10:55:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, but in a smothered bondfire, not a test tube. My neighbor's father in law used to run charcoal kilns about 10 miles from where I live, but that would be overkill.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue Jul 31st, 2012 at 12:57:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
if i have my facts right, don't you live in the most deciduously biodiverse region on the planet?

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Tue Jul 31st, 2012 at 09:34:07 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It is mixed forest with cedar, oak, hickory, ash, walnut, etc., etc. along with introduced species, including various pine, spruce, and fir trees along with ornamentals such as white magnolia, pink magnolia, tulip trees, ornamental pear trees, redbud, dogwood, and various cultivated fruit trees and bushes. From or on my property I have seen deer, turkey, roadrunners, red tail hawks, turkey vultures, grey squirrels, possums, racoons, woodchuck, rabbits, and, from what the cat has drug in, a chipmunk, wood rats, mice voles and a star nosed mole. We have robins, cardinals, titmice, mocking birds, house wrens, blue jays, brown thrashers piliated, redheaded and ladderbacked woodpeckers pretty much year round and seasonally I have seen painted buntings, indigo buntings, bluebirds, juncos, along with red and bluebreasted nuthatches. In addition I have heard owls and whipporwills as well as coyotes and have seen bats sweeping the twilight summer sky for insects. That is just what I can remember off the top of my head. We are part of the Eastern Woodlands fauna area, almost at the boundary between the northern and southern areas.  

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue Jul 31st, 2012 at 02:53:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
As I recall, all the flora of North America got concentrated there during the glaciations, hence the decidedly diverse deciduosity.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Wed Aug 1st, 2012 at 06:02:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The Ozarks have been above sea level and ice free for 400 million years, if I recall correctly. So, at a minimum, there would have been no glacial extinctions here, even if the ice sheet had reached this latitude elsewhere, which it did not. But we are part of a very ancient ecosystem, relatively.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Aug 1st, 2012 at 10:32:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But then you can't run a generator on the gas.
by njh on Fri Aug 3rd, 2012 at 12:43:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It is an EPA-tractor, which is apparently a particular Swedish cathegory. Started during the 30ies but really took off during the war.

Tractor - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

During World War II, a shortage of tractors in Sweden led to the development of the so-called "EPA" tractor (EPA was a chain of discount stores and it was often used to signify something lacking in quality). An EPA tractor was simply an automobile, truck or lorry, with the passenger space cut off behind the front seats, equipped with two gearboxes in a row. When done to an older car with a ladder frame, the result was not dissimilar to a tractor and could be used as one.

After the war it remained popular, now not as a farm vehicle, but as a way for young people without a driver's license to own something similar to a car. Since it was legally seen as a tractor, it could be driven from 16 years of age and only required a tractor license. Eventually, the legal loophole was closed and no new EPA tractors were allowed to be made, but the remaining ones were still legal, which led to inflated prices and many protests from people who preferred EPA tractors to ordinary cars.

IIRC, wood gas was once also used in some places instead of coal gas (way before coal gas was replaced by natural gas as the gas of preference).

My grandfather had quite a few stories about his experiences with wood gas (he drove deliveries during the war). Often involved getting stuck at a steep hill.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Tue Jul 31st, 2012 at 04:18:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Just what I was thinking.  No way that's a tractor.
by rifek on Sun Aug 5th, 2012 at 11:33:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Next you will tell me that this is not a tractor concert:

Sveriges första EPA-konsert på Tjörn - Nyheter P4 Väst Sweden's first EPA-concert at Tjörn - News P4 West
I går hölls Sveriges första EPA-konsert i Skärhamn på Tjörn. Traktorkonserter har satts upp tidigare på ön, men det här är första gången EPA-traktorerna tog sig in på scenen.Yesterday was the first Swedish EPA concert in Skärhamn Tjörn. Tractor Concerts have been set up earlier on the island, but this is the first time EPA tractors made their way onto the stage.


Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se
by A swedish kind of death on Mon Aug 6th, 2012 at 01:19:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You ever get the feeling something's getting lost in translation?  I see now that what we're talking about is that peculiarly Swedish phenomenon, the A-traktor (Norwegian cousin tipped me off.).
by rifek on Wed Aug 8th, 2012 at 12:03:16 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Actually, the A-tractor class was introduced to replace the original EPA-tractors, but after protests the existing EPA-tractors remained although no new EPA-tractors can be registered.

A-traktor - Wikipedia A tractor - Wikipedia
Den principiella skillnaden mellan EPA- och A-traktorn är att A-traktorn måste vara konstruerad för en maxhastighet av 30 km/h +/- 10% medan EPA-traktorn skulle vara konstruerad med ett visst utväxlingsförhållande (10:1).The principal difference between the EPA and A tractor is that the A tractor must be designed for a maximum speed of 30 km /h /- 10%, while the EPA tractor would be designed with a specific gear ratio (10:1 ).

A-tractors are often called EPA-tractors too, so your Norwegain cousin was almost right.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Wed Aug 8th, 2012 at 08:04:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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