California Reformulated Gasoline Program

                       Performance Subcommittee

                        Final Meeting Summary

                          February 14, 1996 

I.   Introduction

          The performance subcommittee discussed the following key issues

     regarding the California Reformulated Gasoline (CaRFG) performance and

     compatibility testing program:

          API Flammability Study

          Holley Performance Products Test Results

          Off-Road Test Program

          US DOE Long Term Mileage Accumulation Update

          CaRFG Test Report Edits

     No comments were received regarding the summary of the previous meeting.

     Copies of presentations or materials given at this meeting are enclosed 

     with this summary.

II.  API Flammability Study

     Mr. Steve Welstand presented the findings from the American Petroleum

Institute's evaluation of the flammability of fuel tank vapors from low RVP

gasolines.  The study evaluated two base fuels without oxygenates and five

reformulated gasolines with varying amounts of MTBE and ethanol.

     The test results show that the upper temperature limit of flammability

increases as RVP is reduced.  They also show that the base fuel composition 

does not affect the temperature limits of flammability significantly.  Adding 

MTBE to a base fuel did not show any consistent increase in the upper 

temperature limits. However, ethanol blends may increase the upper 

temperature limit by about 4oF on average.  The study should be available 

some time in March.  For further questions or details on the API flammability 

study, please call Mr. Welstand at (510) 242-4150.

III. Holley Performance Products Test Results

     Holley Performance Products Company tested several fuel system elastomer

components and power valves used in their products.  Some of the materials 

tested were Viton(R), Buna-N, and chemprene. In its report Holley Performance 

Products Company concluded:  "As a result of contact and operation tests, it 

has been found that California Phase 2 reformulated gas has no detrimental 

effect on Holley fuel handling products." 

        NOTE:  Viton(R) is a registered trademark of DuPont Dow Elastomers

IV.  Off-Road Test Program

     The off-road test program is made up of 14 separate test programs, some 

of which are still in progress.  Overall, 255 units were tested using CaRFG.  

To date, Dolmar-Makita has not found significant differences in multi 

position stability tests in chainsaws and brush cutters.  Homelite has not 

noticed power differences between using CaRFG and conventional fuel in their 

evaluation of trimmers.  Poulan found that the performance of their trimmers 

has been similar using CaRFG and conventional gasoline.  However they have 

reported two incidents on trimmers in field testing.  The cause of the 

incidents is currently under review.

IV.  U.S. DOE Long Term Mileage Accumulation Update

     The Department of Energy completed testing in their long term mileage

accumulation test program, but some of the data is still under review.  The 

test program comprised five 1994 model year vehicles with a starting odometer 

at approximately 20,000 miles.  Each vehicle accumulated 30,000 miles using 


     The results of the test show that no fuel compatibility or performance

issues were raised, and fuel economy decreased about four percent.  The 

federal RFG fuel used probably does not represent an average federal RFG and 

thus produced a greater fuel economy effect than expected on average.  

Considering this information, the results do not represent a significant 

deviation from the fuel economy results in the On-Road test program.

The subcommittee agreed to include the U.S. DOE test results in the final 


V.   Other

     The CaRFG test program report is being reviewed by subcommittee members. 

Final comments are due by March 6, 1996 and the completed report is expected 

to be available in late March.

CBG Program Advisory and Subcommittee Activities