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Old 01-18-2018, 10:51 AM   #1
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Diesel not run for 4 years

How long can a diesel sit? It was winterized, but has not been run for a few years. Rust issues in cylinders?
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Old 01-18-2018, 10:54 AM   #2
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If it's in Minnesota too, you are probably ok since diesel is a very thin oil. If the boat is in a salt water environment, then you might have a problem.
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Old 01-18-2018, 11:02 AM   #3
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Thanks, Yes it is in MN. Wondering about long-term issues with rings, seals, etc. I am skeptical of anything that does not get used. Nothing, animal or mechanical, should sit for years.
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Old 01-18-2018, 11:17 AM   #4
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What engine is it?
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Old 01-18-2018, 11:20 AM   #5
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Volvo Penta, inline 6, do not have model # with me. 1994 boat.
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Old 01-18-2018, 11:56 AM   #6
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Yes you might have some rusting going on. I would start it and run it for a few hours and the change the oil.
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Old 01-18-2018, 12:05 PM   #7
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Thanks.
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Old 01-18-2018, 12:16 PM   #8
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Before starting I would also change the raw water impellers (if so equipped)--the rubber vanes will most likely disintegrate upon start up.
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Old 01-18-2018, 12:27 PM   #9
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Before starting the engine bring the oil pressure up by engaging the starter without fuel going into the engine, After so much elapsed time all of the oil has drained down to the oil pan, you want oil in the lines and in everywhere else that normally gets oil. You may also want to remove at least one injector and look inside the cylinder for rust. You can buy a small remote camera that will fit into your smart phone to do your own boroscope.
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Old 01-18-2018, 12:34 PM   #10
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Good idea, thanks. This is a project houseboat, basically just a hull and engines. Have heard 2 wide-ranging valuations on engines. Anybody else with guesstimates... '94 Volvo 6 cyl, not run in 4 yrs. Doubt it was run much before. Was a liveaboard floater. Will get engine model info when i get home.
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Old 01-18-2018, 01:10 PM   #11
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Borescope is good idea. Would likely spray some solvent in cylinders to free up rings
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Old 01-18-2018, 01:17 PM   #12
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Borescope is good idea. Would likely spray some solvent in cylinders to free up rings
You mentioned that the engine had been winterized. Do know what was done? The rings shouldn’t be seized. You could pull the injectors and put some lubricate into each cyclinder and bar over the engine. Maybe we’ll hear from Ski (Eric) who has done this before.
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Old 01-18-2018, 01:27 PM   #13
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SeaFoam is excellent for freeing up rings.

Most diesels have a dished piston crown so it’s very likely anything poured into the cylinders will not cet to the rings unless the engine is cranked.
I’d pour in the SeaFoam, then crank for 2-3 seconds several times. Best w the compression release engaged. The cranking should disperse the SeaFoam all over the cylinder walls. Let it sit for a day or so to release hard varnishes and other similar deposits down to the bottom of the ring grooves.
Then for start-up you could put in alittle 50/50 2 stroke lube oil and diesel. Put back in the injectors and or cylinder heaters. Start up.
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Old 01-18-2018, 05:23 PM   #14
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Thank you very much for all the valuable info. Ive learned a lot in one afternoon. I do not own this boat, but am trying to discern how problematic engines could be. Will not get to run engines, and am worried what steps, or lack of, current owner would take. Thank You again to everyone for their input and help.
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Old 01-18-2018, 06:11 PM   #15
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Bar over crankshaft with a wrench at least two turns. If it turns smooth, unlikely that there is significant corrosion in any of the holes.

After that, I would have no problem trying a normal start.

Much more stuff to check out before buying, but that is another topic.
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Old 01-18-2018, 06:51 PM   #16
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Thanks, also wondering about resale $value of engines...best guesses? Not my intention, but at odds w owners valuation.

Volvo Penta inline 6 cyl.
220 hp - 700 hrs ?
Model AD41P-A
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Old 01-18-2018, 06:58 PM   #17
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Mystery Oil ??
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Old 01-18-2018, 10:23 PM   #18
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Mystery Oil ??

I’ll second Marvels Mystery Oil for the presoak job.
I started a Perkins 6/354 that had sat for seventeen years, just changed the fluids and rubbers, soaked the cylinders with Marvels and barred it over a few revs with injectors out, and it fired up instantly, though not without smoke!
Note that I still do not use mystery oil or any other snake oil concoction in my fuel or oil.
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Old 01-18-2018, 10:39 PM   #19
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WOW !! Seventeen years !!
Guess the engines are worth a gamble. THANKS !!
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Old 01-18-2018, 10:50 PM   #20
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Bar over crankshaft with a wrench at least two turns. If it turns smooth, unlikely that there is significant corrosion in any of the holes.

After that, I would have no problem trying a normal start.

Much more stuff to check out before buying, but that is another topic.
I agree with Ski. There was a 1920 tug behind our moorage and hadn't been started in a long time. Once the above stuff is checked. Crank her up. It will fire over. After starting expect lots and lots of smoke.......
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