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Another Newbie Question


Floaty Me Boaty

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What did Benny Hill say in one of his sketches, "Learning. all the time" ūüôā¬†

 

On speaking to Dick Goble, currently laid up, and picking his brain, he mentioned to check the oils level by the dipstick. 

Now i must be losing the plot, as there is no dipstick anywhere to be seen except on the gearbox.

So two parts to this,

 

a) How do i maintain the correct oil level and

b) After the oil change, how does one refill, is it a question of topping up when the side panel is still removed?

 

Second silly question.

 

I have been advised to adjust the tappets at TDC to around 6 thou, when cold.

Here it comes, What is the best way to ensure i am at TDC?

When is was a kid it was a question of screwdriver in the head, once a plug was removed, but not on a Kelvin me finks.

 

Once again, thank you in advance and looking forward to getting up to the Boat on Friday 28th, to do some maintenance etc.

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What engine?

 

A Kelvin of some sort I would imagine, given you have been consulting Dick Goble. 

 

If so, I'd suggest you can feel where compression is and judge TDC as you turn it over vereeeee slowleeeee on the start handle. Open the primer valves and listen, too. 

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Can we assume this is on a Kelvin, but if so which model. I will leave it to the Kelvin experts to advise on the dipstick.

 

If you intend to adjust the valve clearances at around TDC you need to ensure it is TDC compression, not TDC between exhaust and inlet. 

 

I can't see Kelvin differing from any other engine so my advice would be to do the following for each valve (we don't know how many cylinders you have).

 

Turn engine until one valve is fully down (open).

Chalk mark the front pulley or flywheel against any sort of datum point.

Turn the engine one complete revolution and adjust that valve.

Rub out chalk mark and repeat on the other valves.

 

Note, this assumes the Kelvin drives its front pulley from the crankshaft. If it is from the cam shaft (like some Listers) rotate the engine half a turn, but a full turn if marking the flywheel.

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P.S. both my Kelvins have engine dipsticks. One in a pretty obvious place and the other, tucked in behind the starter motor.

 

 

1 minute ago, Tony Brooks said:

Note, this assumes the Kelvin drives its front pulley from the crankshaft.

 

On a K series (and J too IIRC), the 'front pulley' is the flywheel! 

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Tony Brooks said:

Can we assume this is on a Kelvin, but if so which model. I will leave it to the Kelvin experts to advise on the dipstick.

 

If you intend to adjust the valve clearances at around TDC you need to ensure it is TDC compression, not TDC between exhaust and inlet. 

 

I can't see Kelvin differing from any other engine so my advice would be to do the following for each valve (we don't know how many cylinders you have).

 

Turn engine until one valve is fully down (open).

Chalk mark the front pulley or flywheel against any sort of datum point.

Turn the engine one complete revolution and adjust that valve.

Rub out chalk mark and repeat on the other valves.

 

Note, this assumes the Kelvin drives its front pulley from the crankshaft. If it is from the cam shaft (like some Listers) rotate the engine half a turn, but a full turn if marking the flywheel.

Sorry, Should have stated, It is a J3 Three cylinder 33Hp in total.

3 minutes ago, MtB said:

What engine?

 

A Kelvin of some sort I would imagine, given you have been consulting Dick Goble. 

 

If so, I'd suggest you can feel where compression is and judge TDC as you turn it over vereeeee slowleeeee on the start handle. Open the primer valves and listen, too. 

 

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2 minutes ago, MtB said:

 

P.S. both my Kelvins have engine dipsticks. One in a pretty obvious place and the other, tucked in behind the starter motor.

 

 

 

On a K series (and J too IIRC), the 'front pulley' is the flywheel! 

 

 

 

Yes, I was not certain, but this method will still work. It puts the cam follower right on the back of the cam and there is a fair degree of tolerance on getting the one turn exact. Ona flywheel diamter I suspect 1" either way.

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4 minutes ago, MtB said:

 

P.S. both my Kelvins have engine dipsticks. One in a pretty obvious place and the other, tucked in behind the starter motor.

 

 

I will check again but cant find it anywhere.

I found the small tap, which drips oil when she is running, which is a good sign. 

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1 minute ago, Floaty Me Boaty said:

I will check again but cant find it anywhere.

I found the small tap, which drips oil when she is running, which is a good sign. 

 

Hmmm mine are both K rather than J, but seem to be the same thing but bigger. The dipstick on one is very close to the oil tap. The other might be on the opposite side but I can't clearly remember, other than it is very accessible. Far easier to get at than the one behind the starter motor. J series engines might be different. 

 

Given your gearbox has a dipstick (which is not standard) we can surmise a previous owner was careful and thoughtful to have fitted it. So the chances are almost certain there is an engine dipstick too, you just haven't spotted it yet.

 

If you take off one of the side cover plates for a peer inside the crank case (surprisingly easy and educational), you'll prolly be able to see the dipstick from inside. 

 

 

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It is a tad unusual, i have to admit.

It has a dipstick for the gearbox and pump out Tap to remove sump oil.

I'll post some pictures at the weekend so people can see what i am up against.

I honestly can't say if this was the norm for a 1953 J3.

Looking through the manuals left with the boat, Seaward Engineering do not give anything away.

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1 minute ago, Floaty Me Boaty said:

It is a tad unusual, i have to admit.

It has a dipstick for the gearbox and pump out Tap to remove sump oil.

I'll post some pictures at the weekend so people can see what i am up against.

I honestly can't say if this was the norm for a 1953 J3.

Looking through the manuals left with the boat, Seaward Engineering do not give anything away.

 

If you fancy removing the J3 and fitting something more sensible, I'd be interested in buying it :) 

 

 

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18 minutes ago, MtB said:

Given your gearbox has a dipstick (which is not standard) we can surmise a previous owner was careful and thoughtful to have fitted it. So the chances are almost certain there is an engine dipstick too, you just haven't spotted it yet.

 

I know some old marine engines had the same oil for engine and gearbox, with both being connected internally, so I wonder if the dipstick on the gearbox could be the engine oil as well - just a wonder. I suppose if the oil goes black, then that would tend to suggest this is the case. Please get it confirmed, though.

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2 minutes ago, Tony Brooks said:

 

I know some old marine engines had the same oil for engine and gearbox, with both being connected internally, so I wonder if the dipstick on the gearbox could be the engine oil as well - just a wonder. I suppose if the oil goes black, then that would tend to suggest this is the case. Please get it confirmed, though.

The gearbox oil is very clear, but the engine oil not so. 

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Just now, Floaty Me Boaty said:

Wouldn't know where to start ūüôā¬†

 

8 minutes ago, Tony Brooks said:

so I wonder if the dipstick on the gearbox could be the engine oil as well - just a wonder. 

 

Not the case on the K series Kelvins, so probably not so on a J either.

 

 

 

 

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The engine dipstick on a  Kelvin J should be on the starboard side, between the front side door and the next one back, about 4 inches below the top of the crankcase. Have a look at the parts book, crankcase group for a picture of where.

 

The oil filler is at the front, a pipe sloping forward in between No 1 cylinder and the timing case.

 

Depending on how the pipe work to the injection pump has been run the dipstick can be a bit hidden.

 

The engine oil (10 pints according to The Book) is wholly separate from the gearbox oil (1/6 gallon- equal to  1 whisky bottle full or 26  2/3 fl oz  / 750ml.)

 

If there is no dipstick in the hole,  pump out the oil and take a side door off. Bale out the rest of the oil.

  Then put 10 pints in through the oil filler at the front of the engine- the pipe that slopes forward between the front cylinder and the timing case.  That will give you the maximum level.  The minimum level is the top of the strainer on the oil pump.

 

Setting the tappets.

 

Do not dismantle the mundungus on the top of the rocker covers  until you have set TDC. You need to be able to open the starting valves.

 

The flywheel has timing marks on the rim for the firing point and TDC.

 

  To find TDC No 1 set up for a petrol start (changeover levers down) and open the priming valves.  Turn the engine slowly with the handle or by pulling on the flywheel rim until the No1  priming cock hisses. Then set the timing mark at the very top of the flywheel. There is no mark on the engine, only on the flywheel, so it is not precise!  The No1 TDC mark is the right hand one of the two looking from the front.

 

The firing order is normally 132, so after setting No1 turning  the flywheel will bring No 3 to TDC. Again No 3 priming cock will hiss at the piston comes up.

Repeat for No 2. There may be TDC Mark's for each of the cylinders, or there may not.

 

Alternatively take a side door off and you can see where the crank is.

 

Once you have set TDC No1.

 

 Remove the inlet manifolds, the starting valve rockers and the oil well covers. Then remove the rocker covers and you can set the tappets.  You need at least two open ended spanners of size  3/8 BSF IIRC.  There is a lock nut under the head of the pushrod, a hex on  the head of the pushrod and a hex on the pushrod below the adjustment thread.  I find it easiest to just ease the lock nut so the top is stiff to rotate, set 6 thou with a feeler and then nip up again before re checking.

Otherwise you will want three spanners and four hands.

I find the posture needed for setting tappets is bloody uncomfortable.

 

 N

 

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25 minutes ago, BEngo said:

The engine dipstick on a  Kelvin J should be on the starboard side, between the front side door and the next one back, about 4 inches below the top of the crankcase. Have a look at the parts book, crankcase group for a picture of where.

 

The oil filler is at the front, a pipe sloping forward in between No 1 cylinder and the timing case.

 

Depending on how the pipe work to the injection pump has been run the dipstick can be a bit hidden.

 

The engine oil (10 pints according to The Book) is wholly separate from the gearbox oil (1/6 gallon- equal to  1 whisky bottle full or 26  2/3 fl oz  / 750ml.)

 

If there is no dipstick in the hole,  pump out the oil and take a side door off. Bale out the rest of the oil.

  Then put 10 pints in through the oil filler at the front of the engine- the pipe that slopes forward between the front cylinder and the timing case.  That will give you the maximum level.  The minimum level is the top of the strainer on the oil pump.

 

Setting the tappets.

 

Do not dismantle the mundungus on the top of the rocker covers  until you have set TDC. You need to be able to open the starting valves.

 

The flywheel has timing marks on the rim for the firing point and TDC.

 

  To find TDC No 1 set up for a petrol start (changeover levers down) and open the priming valves.  Turn the engine slowly with the handle or by pulling on the flywheel rim until the No1  priming cock hisses. Then set the timing mark at the very top of the flywheel. There is no mark on the engine, only on the flywheel, so it is not precise!  The No1 TDC mark is the right hand one of the two looking from the front.

 

The firing order is normally 132, so after setting No1 turning  the flywheel will bring No 3 to TDC. Again No 3 priming cock will hiss at the piston comes up.

Repeat for No 2. There may be TDC Mark's for each of the cylinders, or there may not.

 

Alternatively take a side door off and you can see where the crank is.

 

Once you have set TDC No1.

 

 Remove the inlet manifolds, the starting valve rockers and the oil well covers. Then remove the rocker covers and you can set the tappets.  You need at least two open ended spanners of size  3/8 BSF IIRC.  There is a lock nut under the head of the pushrod, a hex on  the head of the pushrod and a hex on the pushrod below the adjustment thread.  I find it easiest to just ease the lock nut so the top is stiff to rotate, set 6 thou with a feeler and then nip up again before re checking.

Otherwise you will want three spanners and four hands.

I find the posture needed for setting tappets is bloody uncomfortable.

 

 N

 

 

Thanks for the specific information, but can you explain (by PM or email if preferred) why my method will not work on a Kelvin. Every day is a school day.

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10 minutes ago, Tony Brooks said:

 

Thanks for the specific information, but can you explain (by PM or email if preferred) why my method will not work on a Kelvin. Every day is a school day.

I see no reason why your method won't work, and I dont think I suggested that it would not.  If I have, then it was unintended. 

 

 The method I espoused follows but expands  the makers  suggestions.  These I think are there because the  arrangement of the heads on a petrol start  Kelvin is such that if you can see the valve rockers then you have dismantled the  facility for decompression and it can be awkward to get to TDC with the engine on compression. Either you wind it from the rear on the starting handle or you pull the flywheel at the front round  by hand.   In neither case can you easily depress a valve and at the same time  turn the engine.  

N

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39 minutes ago, BEngo said:

I see no reason why your method won't work, and I dont think I suggested that it would not.  If I have, then it was unintended. 

 

 The method I espoused follows but expands  the makers  suggestions.  These I think are there because the  arrangement of the heads on a petrol start  Kelvin is such that if you can see the valve rockers then you have dismantled the  facility for decompression and it can be awkward to get to TDC with the engine on compression. Either you wind it from the rear on the starting handle or you pull the flywheel at the front round  by hand.   In neither case can you easily depress a valve and at the same time  turn the engine.  

N

 

Thanks, I am sorry if you thought I suggested that you implied it would not, I just wanted to know more about such engines.

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Most  of the time the Kelvin J and K are "standard" indirect injection engines with an included roller cam  fuel injection pump, pintle nozzles and a spherical Ricardo Comet diesel combustion chamber. Other foibles include a reciprocating water pump, a hydraulic governor, spring loaded to full chat,  and a plunger oil pump which supplies a 'spit and hope' oil gallery.  There is neither oil pressure nor filter,  only a tap which dribbles oil if it is working. All somewhere near state of the art  for  1932  but today pretty basic, not to say agricultural.

 

Then, in order to start them on a cold Clyde morning Mr Bergius added a simple carburettor, a petrol inlet manifold, a petrol combustion chamber with spark plug and  a magneto to make the sparks.  Then, in order to go from petrol to diesel or vv, he added a suitable system of levers, cams and valves so that the inlet is swapped between diesel and petrol inlet manifolds, the petrol combustion chamber is isolated from the Ricardo chamber by a rocker and valve and the injectors can be turned on or off individually.  It all makes the cylinder heads a bit complicated.  Easy enough to work out though, once you have established which bit does what.

 

They were designed to be easy to work on by unskilled persons.  The cylinders are modular  and each has a  door on either side of the crankcase, so you can get at all the moving parts readily. The  pistons come out through the crankcase doors, without disturbing the cylinder heads. The water distribution is all external copper pipework, without any thermostat other than a spring loaded bypass, and the are no internal  fluid passages between the cylinder and the head.  The head  gasket is made from steel sheet.

 

The gearbox is equally "interesting".  A double sliding cone clutch either engages the ahead cone, on the back of the crankshaft or the astern cone, which is gear driven from a lay shaft which in turn is driven by a duplex roller chain off the ahead cone.  The thing is meant to be held in gear by propellor thrust. There are versions with lined cones and versions with metal-to- metal cones.  The latter can be hard to get out of gear.

 

As a consequence of the gearbox arrangements the whole of the propellor shaft slides fore and aft as ahead/astern is selected.

 

N

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  • 2 weeks later...

Finally got to the boat and found the elusive Dipstick and Oil filler. Thank you to you all for pointing me in the right direction.

Also, i am told there should be a dipstick for the injector pump, but that will have to wait until i go back up.

I did see a Blue headed button looking thing, but did not want to force it.

 

Did find the engine oil level was dangerously high, so starting removing some to get it down to the max. Hope no damage has been caused.

Next time i will be on the boat, i am going to service her and make sure all the oil levels are correct.

Someone mentioned SAE 30 is the correct oil for all three components, Engine, gearbox and Injection Pump.

 

I also found some great reading matter whilst rummaging around in the bag.

A copy of the Original build receipt was very interesting reading. Apparently the engine cost £860.00 in 1953.

Also found a little Maroon book on the J3 , pages of info on the Strip down and servicing of the Injectors and also pages relating to the Kelvin History.

 

Edited by Floaty Me Boaty
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The little maroon book is The Kelvin Bible.

  Owners manual, workshop manual and  mine of fairly useful information, especially when combined with the pictures in the parts list.

 

SAE 30 is the recommended oil for everything.   

 

  10 pints in the sump and  1/6 gallon (26 2/3 fl oz or one whisky bottle full) in the gearbox.

 

A dipstick on the injection pump seems to be optional but common. If it exists it is usually  in the centre of the outside  (starboard)  face of the pump.  The head is a knurled knob about  3/8 or 1/2 Iin diameter.  It is a fairly tight fit.  The drain plug is on the other side of the pump and can be awkward to get back in.   Do not allow the pump to run short of oil.  This wears the pump camshaft and camshafts for these pumps are very scarce. If there is no dipstick there is often a level plug in the same place.

 

The pump oil level can also rise.  That is caused by diesel  leakage past the pumping elements.  It wants fixing so the camshaft is not running in a mixture of oil and diesel.  Fixing it is a specialist job unless you have a Hartridge test bench or similar.

 

Generally worth leaving the injectors well alone, if the engine is going OK. Taking them out once a year is not a bad idea as they tend to rust into the hole they fit in. Then they can be a b@$¥ard to get out.  Plenty of copper grease on the fat part when refitting helps.

 

If you overfill the oil the big end bolts and the balance weights splash it around inside the crankcase.  The cylinders get too much oil and the engine smokes.  Badly.

 

Ten pints of fresh  oil does result in an over high level according to some  dipsticks!  If the oil level is below the big ends and the balance weights I would not worry until the next oil change. ( Once a month in daily use). If it *is* too high pump some out with the sump pump. Do not wear good clothes whilst doing this.

 

N

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1 hour ago, BEngo said:

Do not wear good clothes whilst doing this.

 

 

Surely this applies to all boating activities.

 

But especially when checking battery SG using one of them spectrometer devices. Snapping the little clear plastic lid shut sprays the very finest mist of battery acid all over you every time you do it (like, once for every cell). The two weeks later, whatever you were wearing turns into the most perfect, wonderful lace for all your portholes.

 

DAMHIK. 

 

 

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10 hours ago, BEngo said:

The little maroon book is The Kelvin Bible.

  Owners manual, workshop manual and  mine of fairly useful information, especially when combined with the pictures in the parts list.

 

SAE 30 is the recommended oil for everything.   

 

  10 pints in the sump and  1/6 gallon (26 2/3 fl oz or one whisky bottle full) in the gearbox.

 

A dipstick on the injection pump seems to be optional but common. If it exists it is usually  in the centre of the outside  (starboard)  face of the pump.  The head is a knurled knob about  3/8 or 1/2 Iin diameter.  It is a fairly tight fit.  The drain plug is on the other side of the pump and can be awkward to get back in.   Do not allow the pump to run short of oil.  This wears the pump camshaft and camshafts for these pumps are very scarce. If there is no dipstick there is often a level plug in the same place.

 

The pump oil level can also rise.  That is caused by diesel  leakage past the pumping elements.  It wants fixing so the camshaft is not running in a mixture of oil and diesel.  Fixing it is a specialist job unless you have a Hartridge test bench or similar.

 

Generally worth leaving the injectors well alone, if the engine is going OK. Taking them out once a year is not a bad idea as they tend to rust into the hole they fit in. Then they can be a b@$¥ard to get out.  Plenty of copper grease on the fat part when refitting helps.

 

If you overfill the oil the big end bolts and the balance weights splash it around inside the crankcase.  The cylinders get too much oil and the engine smokes.  Badly.

 

Ten pints of fresh  oil does result in an over high level according to some  dipsticks!  If the oil level is below the big ends and the balance weights I would not worry until the next oil change. ( Once a month in daily use). If it *is* too high pump some out with the sump pump. Do not wear good clothes whilst doing this.

 

N

 

 

4 minutes ago, Floaty Me Boaty said:

 

 

Hoping the 'Dipstick' is the little 'Blue' cap

Injector Pump.jpg

Edited by Floaty Me Boaty
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