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Old 12-18-2017, 07:59 AM   #1
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Engine Surveys and Oil Analysis

For anyone interested I have uploaded to my web site a couple of engine surveys I have had done over the last couple of years as well as an oil analysis and oil report definitions.

Sonas Surveys | AtAnchor.com

BTW, if anyone wants to share copies of theirs just email them to me and I can add them.
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Old 12-18-2017, 09:19 AM   #2
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The engine wear metals are very low. Congratulations, they should last almost forever.

David
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Old 12-18-2017, 12:49 PM   #3
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Interesting story : Have been doing oil analysis on my almost 2 year old John Deere (still under warranty) with each oil change. Blackstone who does my tests, was concerned about some elevated levels. Contacted my dealer who went up the ladder in JD. Their engines are designed for industrial use first and marine use second. In agriculture, logging, and mining, these engines run at a much higher percentage of maximum output. Part of routine engine analysis and preventative maintenance is oil analysis. To that end JD has their own internal document for dealers regarding acceptable levels, elevated levels, and warning levels. The engine models are broken down into groups with similar wear numbers. My dealer is kind of old school and generally doesn't do oil analysis, so he just forwarded the document to me. While I like the people at Blackstone and thick there lab work is good, having the manufacturer's recommended values gives a real baseline based on a lot of research.

The elevated numbers in my oil analysis are between 1/4 and 1/2 of what JD consider normal.

Ted
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Old 12-18-2017, 01:04 PM   #4
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Interesting story : Have been doing oil analysis on my almost 2 year old John Deere (still under warranty) with each oil change. Blackstone who does my tests, was concerned about some elevated levels. Contacted my dealer who went up the ladder in JD. Their engines are designed for industrial use first and marine use second. In agriculture, logging, and mining, these engines run at a much higher percentage of maximum output. Part of routine engine analysis and preventative maintenance is oil analysis. To that end JD has their own internal document for dealers regarding acceptable levels, elevated levels, and warning levels. The engine models are broken down into groups with similar wear numbers. My dealer is kind of old school and generally doesn't do oil analysis, so he just forwarded the document to me. While I like the people at Blackstone and thick there lab work is good, having the manufacturer's recommended values gives a real baseline based on a lot of research.

The elevated numbers in my oil analysis are between 1/4 and 1/2 of what JD consider normal.

Ted
One reason I liked using the analysis service branded by the engine manufacturer. The key to OA being any good is to do them regularly, I did mine with every engine oil change too, including the transmissions which had a longer change cycle. Came in very handy in the case of the latter. Helped out once on the generator too. Along with my detailed maintenance and repair logs and receipts, helped make the engine survey when I sold the boat very positive.
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Old 12-18-2017, 01:52 PM   #5
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Question: if the seller has the oil changed immediately before a survey will the fact that the boat was running for a couple of hours before the oil is drawn still mean an analysis is accurate or could the clean oil mask the actual state?
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Old 12-18-2017, 02:26 PM   #6
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Question: if the seller has the oil changed immediately before a survey will the fact that the boat was running for a couple of hours before the oil is drawn still mean an analysis is accurate or could the clean oil mask the actual state?
A poster over on boatdiesel asked the same question. My answer was that there are three causes of high metals: wear, corrosion and one time events. Wear is proportional to hours; corrosion is proportional to hours and time; and one time events are well one time like contamination while pulling the sample.

Also even if the oil is changed and the hours are zero, there is often 10-25% of the oil left behind which will contaminate the new oil. So it is impossible to say what is from left over oil vs new wear metals with only an hour or so running time on the oil.

That is one among several reasons why smart mechanics don't pay much attention to one time oil analyses.

David
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Old 12-18-2017, 02:32 PM   #7
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I would take an oil change immediately before a survey as a big bright yellow flag.
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Old 12-18-2017, 02:59 PM   #8
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I would take an oil change immediately before a survey as a big bright yellow flag.
The point I was making is - how would you know?
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Old 12-18-2017, 03:26 PM   #9
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Well, that is the other side of the coin. You would have no way of knowing when the oil was changed just by looking at the results of the oil analysis.

You can make some guesses by soot content, but that is easily obscured by, well soot.

Again, why good mechanics don't pay much attention to a one shot oil analysis, especially if you don't know when the oil was changed.

David
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Old 12-18-2017, 04:13 PM   #10
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The point I was making is - how would you know?
Maintenance records and questions.
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Old 12-18-2017, 04:35 PM   #11
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Maintenance records and questions.
I suspect if he had an issue and changed the oil in the hopes of masking it he sure would not be adding the change to his records or telling the buyer.

Wonder if the analysis itself can give an approximate indication that it is "new" oil
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Old 12-18-2017, 07:14 PM   #12
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I suspect if he had an issue and changed the oil in the hopes of masking it he sure would not be adding the change to his records or telling the buyer.

Wonder if the analysis itself can give an approximate indication that it is "new" oil
There are some ways to suspect, such as if the Total Base Number is the same as new oil. Or if all of a sudden the oil results are much better than the last analysis. Somebody crooked like that will probably make other lame attempts to conceal things. All the more reason to get good engine and hull surveyors involved. Remember, one-off analyses are not given much weight by most surveyors unless they are really bad in some measurement.
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Old 12-18-2017, 07:41 PM   #13
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One reason I liked using the analysis service branded by the engine manufacturer.
I prefer to use an independent lab while my motor is still under warranty. While I haven't tried John Deere's oil analysis, I thought the OA report I got from the regional Cat service was on the level of kindergarten.

I also do the transmission and generator. Oil analysis spotted a failing transmission cooler (high sodium level) when the boat was being surveyed for purchase.

Ted
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Old 12-19-2017, 11:02 AM   #14
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"I would take an oil change immediately before a survey as a big bright yellow flag.

Same as demonstrating "cold start and smoke" level on a warm engine.
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