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A “Club” for Fuel... & “Sport Fuel”

Most aviators are aware that 100 Low-Lead AvGas (100LL) has a cloudy future due to the vanishingly small percentage of all motor vehicle fuel it represents. Most readers of SPLOG also know that the vast majority of Light-Sport Aircraft can use — indeed prefer — automobile gasoline, often abbreviated as mogas. What most pilots do not seem to realize yet is that a far larger market of vehicle enthusiasts stand with sport aviators in a preference for zero ethanol fuel, often stated as “E0 (that’s E-zero) mogas.”

To expand availability of E0 mogas at airports and to lock arms with boaters, motorcyclists, and millions of others who want the E0 go-juice, a new club has formed to mobilize support. Welcome to a club you never knew you should join: the Aviation Fuel Club (AFC).

This group is promoting the idea of “sport fuel,” which deliberately avoids “aviation” or “aircraft” as a vastly larger market exists with which to share this fuel. I support these initiatives as I see immense value in aligning aviation with other recreational pursuits. We are too few pilots and we need the solidarity of many millions more.

AFC is emerging as a well-spoken voice. Here’s what they have to say: “With the ever changing government regulations for types of fuel that can and must be sold (labeled or unlabeled), U.S. consumers are left wondering what type of fuel they placed in their vehicle.

At best, they are getting poor performance at a greater cost than was available a few years ago, and at worst, their vehicle needs repair and will not last as long as expected. This is particularly true for the new class of Light-Sport Aircraft, which generally uses engines certified for high octane, pure auto gas without ethanol.”

AFC continues, “To solve this problem, Aviation Fuel Club (sponsored by U-Fuel, Inc. a supplier of  automated fuel stations) has developed a brand of gasoline called ‘Sport Fuel’ and is working with fuel suppliers around the U.S. to make this new fuel available in all states.”

To sell Sport Fuel, U-fuel stipulates that a dealer must first be inspected to insure their facilities meet minimum quality requirements and provide filtration meeting aircraft fueling standards. Then the dealer’s fuel supplier must have their fuel tested to insure it is pure with the proper octane rating. Each dealer must agree to have their fuel tested quarterly by their state Bureau of Petroleum Inspection or an independent laboratory and send the results to U-Fuel to insure that minimum quality standards and labeling are being met.

As Sport Fuel stations are added at airports, marinas, race tracks and other locations, members will be informed and directed to those locations. Aviation Fuel Club’s goal is to provide an economical source of fuel and quality assurance to members for their sport and aircraft engines. That will be Sport Fuel.

While so-called “high performance aviation” continues their work to solve the 100LL challenges, AFC’s grass roots effort may help to provide economical fuel for the 70-80% of all U.S. registered planes that can use lower-cost “Sport Fuel.” With good luck, both goals will be met so all of aviation can stay aloft.

Light Aviation Edition March 2011

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