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Wood powered El Camino
Wood powered El Camino
Wood powered El Camino

The "El Kamina" is the product of Juha Sipila, a Finnish entrepreneur and politician.

The El Kamina is a 1987 Chevrolet El Camino which has been converted to run on wood gas. The name is a play on words in the Finnish language with "kamiina" meaning "stove".

The idea of using wood gas for powering vehicles isn't anything new. In fact the technology was first invented in the 1920 by a Frenchman. But it wasn't until the second world war when fuel supplies - especially in the UK - were severely rationed that they became popular.

Engineers of the time figured out that wood gas generators were perfectly suited for use with conventional internal combustion engines, with just a few minor modifications. Today's wood gas generators are even more efficient, and they manage to extract around 75 percent of the fuel energy from the wood.

The system used in Juha's El Camino allows him to cover a respectable 125 miles on one tank of wood pellets - which weighs in at around 175 lbs (80 kgs). Although thanks to the El Camino's extra storage space it can carry enough wood to cover 800 miles!

The added weight of the wood gas generator, coupled with the lower power output means the El Kamina isn't quite as fast as when it left the factory. But it can still top 87 mph, making it easily capable of motorway cruising.

The downsides to the system are the fact it takes around 20 minutes to get the burners hot enough to produce the necessary gas, and when its all done you've got the messy job of cleaning them out.

However if as fuel prices continue to rise, that'll be a small price to pay for an affordable, renewable and efficient source of fuel.

Similar and related vehicles:
Splinter Wooden Supercar

Source: Juha Silpa via dailymail

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