Author Topic: Flammable vs Combustible  (Read 6512 times)

Offline TomC

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Flammable vs Combustible
« on: March 08, 2008, 09:14:00 AM »
From the cold weather in the mid west now (it's 75 hear in L.A.) many are talking about blending fuels.  Many get the term flammable and combustible mixed up.  A flammable liquid needs a flame or spark to ignite it (like gasoline, kerosene, alcohol, methanol, ethanol, etc).  A combustible liquid needs compression or heat to ignite it (like kerosene, Diesel, veggie oil, animal fat oil, etc).  The flash point of veggie oil and Diesel is around 650 degrees, so with the 1000 degrees of combustion temperature created inside the Diesel engine, it is easy to see why the engines work so well.  If you heat Diesel up to about 120 degrees, then you can also ignite Diesel with a spark (point at which it gets fumy enough).  Good Luck, TomC
Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.

Offline Sean

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Re: Flammable vs Combustible
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2008, 12:09:47 PM »
So don't even get me started on how "Flammable" isn't even a real word, and didn't exist until the DOT decided in the 1960's that Americans were too illiterate to understand that the word "Inflammable" meant stuff could burn, and mandated the signage on trucks to be changed to drop the "In" from the start of the word.

If you really want to make yourself crazy about the difference between inflammable, combustible, explosive, etc. (or make yourself nervous about what all those trucks are carrying), here's the DOT's hazardous materials list, which will tell you what all those numbers really mean:

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Re: Flammable vs Combustible
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2008, 02:58:25 PM »
Flammable, inflammable & nonflammable... Why are there three? Don't you think that two ought to serve the purpose? I mean either the thing flams or it doesn't! ~ George Carlin