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Thoughts an unexpected breakdown?


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11 minutes ago, AndrewIC said:

Filter porn as promised… Top is the original filter, a Beta branded one, after approx 150hrs. Bottom is the one I subsequently swapped after about 40hrs (a Baldwin). Some of the dust will be from the Dremel cutting disks. I’ve never opened up a diesel filter before: Is the amount of crud on the top filter really enough to stop an engine, or should I be looking elsewhere as well? Note that this is the only filter on the engine, there has never been any pre-filter.

 

Sorting out the bits to try to clean up the bottom of the tank.

4207CD3D-B0D2-41FB-B44B-9A2BD016BA99.jpeg

 

 

Is that a fried egg with black-pepper in the bottom of the lower filter ?

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3 hours ago, AndrewIC said:

Filter porn as promised… Top is the original filter, a Beta branded one, after approx 150hrs. Bottom is the one I subsequently swapped after about 40hrs (a Baldwin). Some of the dust will be from the Dremel cutting disks. I’ve never opened up a diesel filter before: Is the amount of crud on the top filter really enough to stop an engine, or should I be looking elsewhere as well? Note that this is the only filter on the engine, there has never been any pre-filter.

 

Sorting out the bits to try to clean up the bottom of the tank.

4207CD3D-B0D2-41FB-B44B-9A2BD016BA99.jpeg

What about in the lift pump

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Is there an easy way for a layman to gauge the condition of a BV1305 lift pump. I'm aware that I do have more crud in my tank than ideal, but starting to stall on half a tank would also be consistent with relying on gravity to feed the engine?

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18 minutes ago, enigmatic said:

Is there an easy way for a layman to gauge the condition of a BV1305 lift pump.

 

 

I've just replaced one of my lift pumps (not a BV1305).

The suction on the 'presumed poorly one' was reasonable when put against the palm of my hand.

The suction on the replacement one was tremendous, and when put against the palm of my hand it resulted in a 'love-bite' on my palm.

 

A non-scientific test but there was a very noticeable difference.

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1 hour ago, enigmatic said:

Is there an easy way for a layman to gauge the condition of a BV1305 lift pump. I'm aware that I do have more crud in my tank than ideal, but starting to stall on half a tank would also be consistent with relying on gravity to feed the engine?

 

Typical lift pump test. Take both the inlet and outlet pipe off. Thumb over the out let port and pump priming lever. It should hold pressure for abut 30 seconds or more. Ditto over the inlet, but this time it should hold vacuum.

 

If this is the disk type pump, then they do clog the valves. I have cleaned they with care. Take the pump off and put witness marks on the base, body and cover so you get them all back correctly aligned. Then undo the six screws and take apart so you can see the valves and what is clogging them. When reassembling (ensure everything is lined up) just nip the screws, so the diaphragm can still move a little and use the priming lever to pull the diaphragm down while you tighten it.

 

 

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FWIW turned out to be neither the fuel mix nor the lift pump, but a small air leak in the fuel lines (union connection next to the lift pump hadn't been tightened properly)

 

The clue was the fuel leak, although since it was slowly leaking fuel right under where I bled it and checked filters when stalling, it wasn't obvious where it was coming from until I cleaned everything up. There's a lot to be said for having a dry bilge and drip tray again.

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So hard to find. My fuel system is full of potential problems and the slightest leak can result in a failure to lift fuel from the tank. (Can't blame anyone else, I fitted it) I don't think I have ever had a failure with a clogged filter but its water getting in that has caused the only problems.

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On 19/09/2021 at 14:13, magnetman said:

All of these problems and oil etc will be history once everyone has an electric boat in 2027. 

 

It's bizarre that humans have relied on such dirty and complicated non rotary machines for so long when all you need is an electric motor decent batteries and go slower. 

 

Diesel is king. 

And think about all the short circuits, dodgy connections and blown fuses that will bring. One can fix/bodge many diesel engine faults by the side of the canal. I wonder if that will be possible post 2027.😇

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An afternoon with the vacuum pump and a long bit of copper tube yields this lot… For scale these are 10 litre containers. Probably only a couple of litres of water in total, but a lot of muck - the first lot out is on the right, by the time I got to the one on the left all I was getting was clean fuel. So my hope is that the agitation of filling up put enough of this into suspension to clog the filter and that nothing worse is wrong. I’ve left them to settle out for a couple of weeks, presumably I can re-use the clean parts if I decant it carefully? As to where the water came from, I have my doubts about the o-ring on the flap that covers the key way on the locking fuel cap; the collar screws are not exposed and the main o-ring looks ok.

 

 

 

 

EAC5CDDB-2151-41F1-93A2-16185E03DE65.jpeg

88CF115C-15D6-470A-8696-26F16FF16112.jpeg

756B2254-5389-47C3-9D4F-2FE25C0341D3.jpeg

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27 minutes ago, TNLI said:

I'm trying to find one of these, as they are cleanable and will even stop water. I normally prefilter fuel to save on the cost of primary fuel filter changes. Alas I sold my Baja with my last yacht over 10 years ago.

Baja Filter - MyBoatsGear.com

 

Practical sailor magazine undetook a complex test of several filters Vs the Baja with 'cleanish' and very dirty diesel.

 

The result was that there are better, more effective filters at a fraction of the price of the Baja.

 

Conclusions
The new $29 West Marine filter emerged triumphant, the best by far and a good buy in any of the three sizes. The expensive Baja filter we’ve long touted also did very well, but it was beaten by a very simple move by the designers of the West filter: Keep the water away from the screen in the first place. While the Baja’s finest filter is probably just as good, it inevitably lets more water through.

Also surprisingly effective were the fine-screened filters from Griot (model 44797 at $25), and Attwood (model 8888-1, at $7.25).

The awful truth is that none of these filters yield pristine clean fuel. Some water remains, even if but a tiny bit. And that leads inevitably to HUMbugs. Nor can they clean up really dirty fuel, like Batch B. Luckily, you’ll probably never encounter such fuel at a fuel dock.

The best of these filters extract a lot of dirt that normally might wind up in your primary or secondary fuel filters. As an example, the worst filter showed a particle count of 12; for the best filter, the particle count was 1, a 12-fold difference.

So, is it worth the hassle of filtering fuel at deck level? The tests strongly indicate that as a routine safeguard, the answer is a resounding “Yes,” and the filter of choice is the West Marine Model WM-F8C.

 

Deck-Fill Fuel Filters - Practical Sailor (practical-sailor.com)

 

 

 

Reports by MyBoat Gear 

 

WM-F8C

WM-F8C these filters from West marine were tested by Powerboat Reports (March 2003) and rated better than other more expensive funnels.

Teflon-coated, stainless-steel filter separates water and dirt from gasoline, diesel and kerosene fuels. Made from industrial standard electro conductive polypropylene that can be grounded for extra safety. Fuel flows quickly through the filter into the tank and water stays in the funnel. Practical-Sailor did a test and found it to be the best despite its low cost. $35

 

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On 18/09/2021 at 20:56, magnetman said:

My mum had a BV1505 on her narrow boat and one day she had a mechanic working on it and he stepped on the lift pump. Tiny little crack in one of the pipes. 

 

I hate so called professionals going near my engine. They often step or sit on things that weren't designed to take the weight of a human. It always amazes me how little mechanical sympathy some mechanics possess. 

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On almost all boats the fuel tank is the  primary water settling chamber, by virtue of the take off being a distance above the bottom of the tank.

So any water that leaks in around the fill cap, plus any water that splashes up into the tank vent, plus the atmospheric moisture in the make up air that condenses into the fuel, and  occasionally, plus moisture delivered from imperfect retail storage, will settle in the bottom of the tank until eventually this water level will coincide with the fuel outlet to the engine. Splutter die scenario.

This is unless you do something  regularily to get rid of that water.

Some narrow boat tanks have a second outlet right on tank bottom, valved and capped, to drain the tank bottom, ours did.

But getting the cap off and a container under the outlet was difficult in the confined engine hole.

It was hugely easier to use a very cheap plastic bulb pump and an extended suction tube to pump the tank bottoms from the fill point into a soft drink bottle to leave to settle and return clear fuel into the tank and discard the crud. We got ours from Wilcos I think.

On the veteran yacht I am associated with we bought a much more expensive brass lift pump and fitted a length of detachable 5/16"  copper tube to accomplish the same task.

Some fuel additives contain an emulsifier to emulsify and entrain the water to take it right through the engine. 

This actually defeats the separator component of the fuel filter that should be installed in the fuel line.

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2 hours ago, DandV said:

 

Some fuel additives contain an emulsifier to emulsify and entrain the water to take it right through the engine. 

This actually defeats the separator component of the fuel filter that should be installed in the fuel line.

This is worth bearing in mind. I am not a scientist and I have never read the small print on a bottle of fuel treatment - in fact I no longer use any treatment - but I wonder if the usual treatment, i.e. just chuck a bit of snake oil in the tank from time to time actually emulsifies far too much water, damages the engine, makes gallons of fuel unburnable and makes it pointless to try to syphon water out of the tank as the whole tank is actually an emulsion that can never separate? And another thing. I have often said on here that so called 'boatbuilders' ought to fit an inspection plate to fuel tanks. Well as Alan de Enfield pointed out, they should, it is a requirement of the RCD.  This raises a lot of interesting points and should give 'boatbui;ders' something to think about. The quotes around 'boatbuilders' is because being a steel fabricator does not make someone into a boatbuilder. Oh my, I do seem to be remarkably grumpy this morning. 

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10 hours ago, Alan de Enfield said:

 

Practical sailor magazine undetook a complex test of several filters Vs the Baja with 'cleanish' and very dirty diesel.

 

The result was that there are better, more effective filters at a fraction of the price of the Baja.

 

Conclusions
The new $29 West Marine filter emerged triumphant, the best by far and a good buy in any of the three sizes. The expensive Baja filter we’ve long touted also did very well, but it was beaten by a very simple move by the designers of the West filter: Keep the water away from the screen in the first place. While the Baja’s finest filter is probably just as good, it inevitably lets more water through.

Also surprisingly effective were the fine-screened filters from Griot (model 44797 at $25), and Attwood (model 8888-1, at $7.25).

The awful truth is that none of these filters yield pristine clean fuel. Some water remains, even if but a tiny bit. And that leads inevitably to HUMbugs. Nor can they clean up really dirty fuel, like Batch B. Luckily, you’ll probably never encounter such fuel at a fuel dock.

The best of these filters extract a lot of dirt that normally might wind up in your primary or secondary fuel filters. As an example, the worst filter showed a particle count of 12; for the best filter, the particle count was 1, a 12-fold difference.

So, is it worth the hassle of filtering fuel at deck level? The tests strongly indicate that as a routine safeguard, the answer is a resounding “Yes,” and the filter of choice is the West Marine Model WM-F8C.

 

Deck-Fill Fuel Filters - Practical Sailor (practical-sailor.com)

 

 

 

Reports by MyBoat Gear 

 

WM-F8C

WM-F8C these filters from West marine were tested by Powerboat Reports (March 2003) and rated better than other more expensive funnels.

Teflon-coated, stainless-steel filter separates water and dirt from gasoline, diesel and kerosene fuels. Made from industrial standard electro conductive polypropylene that can be grounded for extra safety. Fuel flows quickly through the filter into the tank and water stays in the funnel. Practical-Sailor did a test and found it to be the best despite its low cost. $35

 

Thanks for that interesting test article. I have a lot of respect for practical boat owner and West Marine products are real good, BUT the size of the plastic filters is a fraction of the 3 different elements in the Baja filter, so they block very quickly. Also ally filter units are a tad tougher than alloy ones. Alas I can't find a BAJA even in the used Fleabay and Amazinon lists. So it looks like the West Marine job will have to suffice!

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4 minutes ago, TNLI said:

...........the size of the plastic filters is a fraction of the 3 different elements in the Baja filter, so they block very quickly.............

 

That seems an odd statement, as surely the intention is to catch any muck, having a filter with a coarse grade of filter is just going to let the muck straight thru and is a waste of time.

 

Very small bits of dust, rust and dirt are enough to stop your engine, so surely it is worth taking a bit longer before setting off on your transatlantic voyage and ensure your fuel is as clean as possible.

 

Everone can make their own risk assessement.

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27 minutes ago, Bee said:

This is worth bearing in mind. I am not a scientist and I have never read the small print on a bottle of fuel treatment - in fact I no longer use any treatment - but I wonder if the usual treatment, i.e. just chuck a bit of snake oil in the tank from time to time actually emulsifies far too much water, damages the engine, makes gallons of fuel unburnable and makes it pointless to try to syphon water out of the tank as the whole tank is actually an emulsion that can never separate? And another thing. I have often said on here that so called 'boatbuilders' ought to fit an inspection plate to fuel tanks. Well as Alan de Enfield pointed out, they should, it is a requirement of the RCD.  This raises a lot of interesting points and should give 'boatbui;ders' something to think about. The quotes around 'boatbuilders' is because being a steel fabricator does not make someone into a boatbuilder. Oh my, I do seem to be remarkably grumpy this morning. 

 

It seems that you are correct to view the additives with a good dose of scepticism. Yes, using an emulsifying additive with anything but a tiny amount of water in the tank is likely to create excessive fuel/water emulsion. The biocide types and emulsifiers may also be implicated in the "sticky diesel" thing and the wax like substance that has blocked some diesel filters, as reported by RCR. I am not sure anyone properly understands the processes.

 

I am sure that annual or half-yearly sucking whatever lurks in the bottom of the tank is vital before adding an additive. If after a couple of cleanings I only found a minimal amount of water I would not use an emulsifier but would use a biocide in the autumn ready for the winter layup.

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3 hours ago, Tony Brooks said:

 

It seems that you are correct to view the additives with a good dose of scepticism. Yes, using an emulsifying additive with anything but a tiny amount of water in the tank is likely to create excessive fuel/water emulsion. The biocide types and emulsifiers may also be implicated in the "sticky diesel" thing and the wax like substance that has blocked some diesel filters, as reported by RCR. I am not sure anyone properly understands the processes.

 

I am sure that annual or half-yearly sucking whatever lurks in the bottom of the tank is vital before adding an additive. If after a couple of cleanings I only found a minimal amount of water I would not use an emulsifier but would use a biocide in the autumn ready for the winter layup.

Using fuel Biocides, (Potential damage to HP fuel pump seals), is one bad idea, just prefilter the fuel and clean the tank out once a year. I have had to install inspection plates into both water and fuel tanks so they can be properly cleaned out. 

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49 minutes ago, TNLI said:

I have had to install inspection plates into both water and fuel tanks so they can be properly cleaned out. 

 

I guess the rules for lifeboats are very different, but, for all recreational boats built to RCD compliance they must have inspection hatches incorporated into them.

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3 hours ago, Alan de Enfield said:

 

I guess the rules for lifeboats are very different, but, for all recreational boats built to RCD compliance they must have inspection hatches incorporated into them.

That's interesting, I wonder how many Narrowboats out there have inspection hatches built in?

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9 minutes ago, ditchcrawler said:

That's interesting, I wonder how many Narrowboats out there have inspection hatches built in?

 

It was discussed in a thread a few weeks ago - the answer of the small number of participants in the thread showed just one (and that was a 'self-fit' hatch.

 

 

It was first discussed in 2013 when a customer made Ally aware that her boats were not compliant, and there is a thread on the subject.

 

This was what I posted a month or so ago when the subject was again raised (RCD Extract) :

 

Fuel system and fuel tanks

 

ER 5.2.1 The filling, storage, venting and fuel supply arrangements and installations shall be designed and installed so as to minimise the risk of fire and explosion.

 

ER 5.2.2 Fuel tanks -

Fuel tanks, lines and hoses shall be secured and separated or protected from any source of significant heat. The material the tanks are made of and their method of construction shall be according to their capacity and the type of fuel. All tank spaces shall be ventilated. Petrol shall be kept in tanks which do not form part of the hull and are:

(a) insulated from the engine compartment and from all other source of ignition;

(b) separated from living quarters. 

 

Diesel fuel may be kept in tanks that are integral with the hull.

 

Harmonised standard: BS EN ISO 10088:2013 Small craft - Permanently installed fuel systems BS EN ISO 21487:2012 Small craft - Permanently installed petrol and diesel fuel tanks

 

The requirements for installation of a fuel system on a boat with fixed fuel tanks are given in the harmonised standard BS EN ISO 10088 Permanently installed fuel systems and BS EN ISO 21487:2012 Small craft - Permanently installed petrol and diesel fuel tanks.

The requirement for petrol fuel tanks to be ‘insulated from the engine and all other sources of ignition’ is deemed to be complied with if

a) the clearance between the petrol tank and the engine is greater than 100 mm and

b) all electrical parts on the engine which could create a spark, and any other electrical components in the engine/fuel compartment, are ignition protected. To ensure that these components are ignition protected the boat builder should use a petrol engine that complies with BS EN ISO 15584 Inboard petrol engines - fuel and electrical system components (the engine manufacture should provide this confirmation) and for other parts, e.g. blower fan or electric bilge pump, use only components that have been CE marked in accordance with Annex II 1. The clearance between a petrol tank and any dry exhaust components must be greater than 250 mm, unless an equivalent thermal barrier is provided. For diesel engine installations, the engines used should comply with BS EN ISO 16147

Inboard diesel engines – Engine-mounted fuel and electrical components to ensure that the fuel components fitted on the engine by the engine manufacturer are safe. The engine manufacture should provide confirmation that the engine complies with this standard.

Fuel hose used in the system must be fire resistant if used in the engine compartment and Where fuel hose is used the standard requires that only fire-resistant hose to BS EN ISO 7840 may be used in the engine compartment. Such hose should be stamped to indicate compliance

 

This appears to be a requirement in  BS EN ISO 21487:2012

 

If there is a drain in a diesel oil tank, it shall be fitted with a shut-off valve having a plug that can be removed only with tools. Each tank shall have an inspection hatch with at least 150 mm diameter. The inspection hatch shall, as a rule, be located on top of the tank, but for diesel oil tanks it may also be on the tank side. There shall be access to the inspection hatch when the tank is in position.

Edited by Alan de Enfield
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2 minutes ago, Alan de Enfield said:

 

It was discussed in a thread a few weeks ago - the answer of the small number of participants in the thread showed just one (and that was a 'self-fit' hatch.

 

 

It was first discussed in 2013 when a customer made Ally aware that her boats were not compliant.

 

This was what I posted a month ofr so ago when the subject was again raised (RCD Extract) :

 

Fuel system and fuel tanks

 

ER 5.2.1 The filling, storage, venting and fuel supply arrangements and installations shall be designed and installed so as to minimise the risk of fire and explosion.

 

ER 5.2.2 Fuel tanks -

Fuel tanks, lines and hoses shall be secured and separated or protected from any source of significant heat. The material the tanks are made of and their method of construction shall be according to their capacity and the type of fuel. All tank spaces shall be ventilated. Petrol shall be kept in tanks which do not form part of the hull and are:

(a) insulated from the engine compartment and from all other source of ignition;

(b) separated from living quarters. Diesel fuel may be kept in tanks that are integral with the hull.

 

Harmonised standard: BS EN ISO 10088:2013 Small craft - Permanently installed fuel systems BS EN ISO 21487:2012 Small craft - Permanently installed petrol and diesel fuel tanks

 

The requirements for installation of a fuel system on a boat with fixed fuel tanks are given in the harmonised standard BS EN ISO 10088 Permanently installed fuel systems and BS EN ISO 21487:2012 Small craft - Permanently installed petrol and diesel fuel tanks.

The requirement for petrol fuel tanks to be ‘insulated from the engine and all other sources of ignition’ is deemed to be complied with if

a) the clearance between the petrol tank and the engine is greater than 100 mm and

b) all electrical parts on the engine which could create a spark, and any other electrical components in the engine/fuel compartment, are ignition protected. To ensure that these components are ignition protected the boat builder should use a petrol engine that complies with BS EN ISO 15584 Inboard petrol engines - fuel and electrical system components (the engine manufacture should provide this confirmation) and for other parts, e.g. blower fan or electric bilge pump, use only components that have been CE marked in accordance with Annex II 1. The clearance between a petrol tank and any dry exhaust components must be greater than 250 mm, unless an equivalent thermal barrier is provided. For diesel engine installations, the engines used should comply with BS EN ISO 16147

Inboard diesel engines – Engine-mounted fuel and electrical components to ensure that the fuel components fitted on the engine by the engine manufacturer are safe. The engine manufacture should provide confirmation that the engine complies with this standard.

Fuel hose used in the system must be fire resistant if used in the engine compartment and Where fuel hose is used the standard requires that only fire-resistant hose to BS EN ISO 7840 may be used in the engine compartment. Such hose should be stamped to indicate compliance

 

This appears to be a requirement in  BS EN ISO 21487:2012

 

If there is a drain in a diesel oil tank, it shall be fitted with a shut-off valve having a plug that can be removed only with tools. Each tank shall have an inspection hatch with at least 150 mm diameter. The inspection hatch shall, as a rule, be located on top of the tank, but for diesel oil tanks it may also be on the tank side. There shall be access to the inspection hatch when the tank is in position.

As I said, I wonder how many Narrowboats out there have one?

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