Speaking of High Gasoline Prices…

 Posted by on 26 May 2006 at 1:42 pm  Uncategorized
May 262006

As another example of the free market in action, business is booming for Dogwood Energy, a small company in Tennessee that makes home “stills” to allow owners to distill their own ethanol for use in automobiles. According to the article:

An upstart Tennessee business is marketing stills that can be set up as private distilleries making ethanol — 190 proof grain alcohol — out of fermented starchy crops such as corn, apples or sugar cane. The company claims the still’s output can reduce fuel costs by nearly a third from the pump price of gasoline…

Dogwood Energy says it costs about 75 cents per gallon to make ethanol at home. Adding 15 percent ethanol to $3 gasoline reduces the cost of a fill-up to $2.40 per gallon, [company spokeswoman Shelley] McClanahan said.

A blend with 85 percent ethanol cuts the cost to $1.09 for a blended gallon, she said.

Sasher’s stills, which stand about 6 feet tall and easily fit in an airy garage corner, sell for about $1,400 each. Blueprints each sell for about $45 and buyers who are good salvagers can build a still themselves for less than $1,000, McClanahan said.

Potential customers should be aware of one legal caveat:

Buyers of stills need a federal permit to make ethanol on private property. In what amounts to an honor system, they are to add a poison to their homemade alcohol so it isn’t white lightning.

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