Not been on here for a while, like a lot of folk i found some of the negativity tiresome ... but thought I would drop in and tell you a story on this wild and windy afternoon, and hopefully get some input from the engineers on here
So, I finally decided to replace my knackered old BMC 1.5, with a reconditioned one, with a warranty, from a well known company. What could possibly go wrong.....
The engine was fitted, and had major timing problems so after a bit of argy bargy, the suppliers agreed to replace it with another unit, to enable me to get underway ... all good. The replacement was fitted by one of their engineers, started and ran ... it was a bit noisier than my old engine, but no knocks or smoke.
Next day I decided to get moving and it wouldn't start. Turned over lumpily, tried to fire, puffs of white smoke but just faded and died. The suppliers sent an engineer, diagnosed some residual air in diesel system, bled it, finally got it going ... and off I went.
Next day, checked oil and water, topped both up ... about 1/2 litre of oil .... again it wouldn't start, same as before. Called suppliers, who told me I couldn't keep calling every time I couldn't start my engine and that I should join RCR. They finally agreed to send engineer, if I agreed to pay if it was not a problem with the engine, and same as before ... diagnosed air in system, bled through, checked for leaks, got her started ... and I went on my way. The engine vibrates more than I am used to and is noisy, no knocks, just sounds like a doggy old BMC, no smoke. Stopped a couple of times, and started fine when warm.
Next day, checked oil ... nothing at all showing on dipstick, no sign of oil in engine bay .... engineer is sent, checks it over, tops up oil and eventually gets it running so that I can charge batteries etc and says I'll probably be ok to cruise and someone will be in touch. I stay put. the company get in touch and say it is not unusual for a new engine to get "gunked up" and this causes piston rings to stick and they would come and put some oil treatment in. I asked if the term "gunked up" was a technical term as I had not come across it in the context of a reconditioned engine.
Another engineer comes out, does compression test, which he says is fine, fixes a few alleged leaks in my fuel system, removes bell housing and .... hey presto, there is the missing oil. He diagnoses that the engine has overheated, and melted the crank seal. There was nothing to suggest it had overheated, water in header tank fine, temp gauge steady .... he points out a slight kink in one of my pipes, which has allegedly been there for ages as they don't bend easily and this is the cause of the overheating luckily I have photos of offending pipe, without twists, prior to the fitting of the second engine
The company then decided they need to investigate all "environmental factors" that could causing these issues. So next, there must be a problem with my gearbox, PRM160, They come and remove it, scratch their heads, put it back, go through everything possible, including my fuel system .... and find a possible breach in the injector pump gasket ... it's not unusual for them to "work loose" apparently after an engine has been bench tested .... but surely all the oil would be in my engine bay if this was the case ... apparently not. What about the oil in the bell housing? ... gearbox overfilled (it wasn't)
So, it all went back together, they eventually got her to fire up, it vibrated and juddered to such an extent that stuff was falling off shelves, there was some black smoke .... then it settled down, a bit ... problem solved, apparently air in the system can cause excessive vibration on start up ... I can now continue my journey i am told
Next day, wouldn't start ... same as before ... called company ... must be a fuel leak somewhere in my system letting air in over night. There is an engineer currently replacing all my diesel pipes as I type this. I have suggested that perhaps the problem lies in the engine, but they refuse to consider this until all "environmental factors" are eliminated. I asked if they could arrange a tow to enable me to fill up with water, empty loo and charge batterys ... no, let the engineer sort out my dodgy fuel system first
So, here I am, in Oswaldtwistle, on the L&L, in the snow, low on water and coal, have had no power or hot water for weeks, and indeed no income as I have been unable to trade, on the friday before a bank holiday weekend feeling as if I have slipped into some Kafka-esque nightmare. I have not discussed this publicly till now, and been as reasonable as i can be BUT .... i have omitted some details, like their failure to supply a copy of the warranty in writing until yesterday ....
Now, I'm no engineer ... and there may well be a leak in my diesel system, my gearbox may have dropped some oil into the bell housing, all the engine oil may have been lost through the injector pump gasket ... but could there may be a problem elsewhere, maybe with the crankshaft? it seems to me that this would explain most of the symptoms ... and would only have manifested when the engine was first put under load by the engineer after fitting
Any thoughts? ... I'm not looking for sympathy, and not naming and shaming at this point, as the company are still trying to resolve the problem .... just looking for some light entertainment and genuinely trying to get my head round this situation and understand what is going on ... also concerned that this engine was run without oil for some time. The oil pressure gauge was left off when it was fitted as it was "missing a splitter" ... I was told it would be ok to move, as it was a new engine, but to get it sorted at next boat yard ... I haven't got there yet ...
and if anyone is heading west on the L&L and could offer a tow to rishton / water / drop me some coal ?
or suggest boat yard between Oswaldtwistle and Wigan that might come and tow me ...