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T: Fuel Tank VOC Spares Company Ethanol Proof Ewarts Plunger

Rob H

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
I tied to post this in the VOC Spares company forum to ask the question but it seems we are not allowed to.

The question is that does anyone have any experience of using these plungers and what is the material used that replaces the cork? I am guessing that this is not Viton

From my experience, I fitted these with a little oil and they had a nice smooth action but as soon as the petrol came in contact they began to become tight and now after a couple of weeks they are very difficult to open and require a firm grip of fingers from two hands to operate

Robert Watson

Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
We have 3 places that supply non ethanol fuel in this part of the world. The trouble I have, if one was to be completely anal about the whole situation is that at 2 of the 3 it is delivered on the forecourt through a blender pump. This means the first 1,2,3????? litres are whatever the last guy pumped. Only one has a dedicated hose only for their high octane non ethanol fuel.
My attitude is that if I am out and about and using the bike consistently I will run the (10%) ethanol fuel but try to top up with non ethanol if I am going to leave it parked for a while - like the winter. My C Rapide ran about last Feb 2020 and 2 weeks ago I started it up. Second kick on the fuel that was in it for 16 months. That was the stuff from the non blender pump.


Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Here in Canada we are lucky to have Chevron 94 octane with no ethanol. And, as Mr. Dan S points out, because it has a dedicated hose, your not going to get the first litre of whatever the last customer purchased.


Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Peter, I´d be very interested to hear from you about a test of NBR material , like o-rings , shaft seals, fuel hoses that you soak in fuel for one week with this Esso. I have posted elsewhere photos of rubber footrests soaked in auto fuel to show the swelling. My believe the ethanol is NOT the problem, it is all sorts of thinners in modern fuel, like toluol, butane, acetone and all. So that bashing of ethanol is just no matter - but it is not great too, less energy in ethanol and hygroscopic. So you cannot really escape modern fuel, E 10 or not, maybe avgas would do in special cases - when you accept the price.
Basically you are not likely to find much of ethanol in non E 5 or 10 as it is not liked by fuel companies for its higher costs so any super 95 or 98 is allright.

I don’t know if swelling foot peg rubbers really tell you anything definitive. Ethanol causes the plastic tank on my Moto Guzzi to swell up to the point where the fork tubes come in contact with the tank. It also makes the tank extremely difficult to reinstall. Consistently filling the tank with ethanol free fuel allows the tank to shrink back to what appears to be its original state. In other words it’s not the toluol, butane, etc.. Personally I think (in this particular situation) it’s not actually the ethanol itself that is directly causing the problem. It is the fact that the ethanol is as you say hygroscopic and it it the water that is causing the tank to swell. Just my opinion..... but the ethanol does cause problems. Storing small engines for any length of time without draining the E 10 is asking for trouble.


Well Known and Active Website User
VOC Member
Footrest rubbers were just an example, you can do same test with any NBR hose or seal. You will get a lot of swelling and I think it is no different if E 10 or Super 95 or 98. But waiting for reports from here about various sorts of "ethanol-free" .
Interesting experience with your Guzzi tank, wonder what sort of plastics they got. No GFR epoxy maybe, but attacked by water content in ethanol - strange.


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