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Old 01-14-2011, 06:42 AM   #41
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Ok... Here's a question... As I step thru the early stages of putting together a polishing system for Skinny Dippin', I am torn as to what filter I should use. I plan on using the two Racor 500's I have now for a multi-stage filtration rig for the main engine, but I am having trouble deciding what to use for the polishing circuit.

The way I see it, I have three options:

1) Use another Racor 500 (single) so I don't have to carry different filters cartridges for the app.

2) Get a Racor 900 or 1000.

3) Get a Gulf Coast filter and a larger pump.

Can the little pumps and little filters do the job? I mean, I'll have a lot of time to do continuous polishing, so I wonder if just another 500 will do the job? Space is somewhat of a premium and I like the idea of consistency among the filters, so I am on the side of a single 500 IF, and only IF, it can handle the task. (BTW... dual 150g tanks)

Opinions?
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Old 01-14-2011, 07:57 AM   #42
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RE: Fuel Polishing

To give a decent answer on whether you need one or what type of system might work, more information is needed:

Can the dual tanks be isolated or are they effectively one tank?
If one, what size is the interconnection?
How much fuel do you go through in a year?
Voltage available?
Do you have a day tank?
Typical fuel consumption in gph.
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Old 01-14-2011, 08:41 AM   #43
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RE: Fuel Polishing

I plan on adding tank isolation valves as a feature of the new system to allow for movment of fuel from tank to tank for ballast reasons and for visual tank inspection and cleaning.

I think we went thru about 200 gallons last year.

12V and 120V in bilge.

A day tank MAY be an addition in the future. I am planning on adding the plumbing to do so. That's a conversation we'll cover in the future here, but for the time being...No.

We suck about 1.75-3 gph.
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Old 01-14-2011, 10:31 AM   #44
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Delfin:
If that avatar is actually your boat, it's one of the best I've seen thus far.
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Old 01-14-2011, 10:33 AM   #45
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Gonzo, others may (will) have a different opinion on fuel polishing, but mine is that if the diesel can sit for a year plus, you'll wish you had the ability to polish it at some point.* I prefer a system that moves as much fuel as possible, since when underway, polishing the fuel means removing the crud that precipitates out of diesel as it sloshes around.* Slow flow systems don't do as good a job as those moving more fuel, so something like the Racor FPM doesn't really appeal to me both from a cost and functionality perspective.*

So, those are my biases, and based on that I'd say because your tanks aren't that large you are marginal on the need to polish, but because the fuel may sit there for awhile and you can afford to put in a system and there is room for it I'd say go for it.* There is no downside other than cost that I can think of.*

The system I would put on your boat would have the supply and return manifolds made out of 1/2" JIC fittings.* Since you only have 2 tanks I don't see the need to make up or fabricate separate manifolds.* If you think you would add a day tank later, include an additional capped port.* I prefer 120 vac motors where to voltage is available because they are quiet and last a long time, and the carbonator style mount (48YZ mount) is super easy to set up to a ProCon vane pump that you can buy to match the filter you use.* In your case, a Racor 500 will pass 60 gph, which should be plenty so the ProCon pump would be a Grainger part number 6XE80, mated to a 1/4 hp motor, Grainger part number 5XB85.* This motor pump will cost you less than $200.00.* Since 60 gph is all you need, the Walbro pumps could also be a good choice, although I think Phil said they were going to stop making them.* Make sure you use JIC fittings unless you like leaks, and you can get what you need in this department from any hydraulic hose shop.* A timer is nice so you can turn the unit on to polish for a set period of time, and you can find one at Grainger as well.* When underway and the inspiration hits you, polish away.* I run my system 50% of the time and after 4,000 gallons or so have changed filters 4 times, but never drained a teaspoon of water out of the Racor 1000s.

Just my two (three?) cents worth, although I am sure others will have a different approach.
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Old 01-14-2011, 10:34 AM   #46
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Seahorse, this photo was taken while she was in slings, and a friend (Sean Herron) photoshoped out the travelift, although you can see the shadow of the structure cast on the pilot house.
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Old 01-14-2011, 12:26 PM   #47
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Fuel Polishing

Good stuff Delfin... THANKS!

I've been on-the-fence about using AC or DC power for it. You make a good point about using AC. I'll need to decide if wiring it to the breaker panel will be something to tackle as opposed to just doing a local plug into the GFCI outlet in the bilge and a swicth on the board I was planning on mounting it all to. But the motor and pump combo sure is cheaper than what I was planning on using. Didn't I read something about "continuous duty" needs for these pumps?

Why JIC fittings? I was planning on NPT and barbed connections. Bad idea? Really? I suppose I could go the NPT route on the low pressure stuff for the new filtering rig and use the JIC fittings for the polisher. Acceptable? Or no...

(oh... can you tell me what "carbonator pump" means exactly)

Thanks,
Tom-

-- Edited by GonzoF1 on Friday 14th of January 2011 01:30:26 PM
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Old 01-14-2011, 12:47 PM   #48
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Fuel Polishing

Gonzo, the motor and pump are continuous duty, which seems to mean something different in vac motors than dc motors.* The 24vdc 'continuous duty' pumps I started with would overheat and trip after 30 minutes of continuous run time because their continuous duty was based on zero lift, which is unattainable when sucking fuel through a filter.* The 120 vac motors couldn't care less about that - they spin and the pump does the work.

I found out about the need for JIC the hard way.* I assembled my array on the bench with NPT fittings and a 30" pipe wrench with permatex, thinking that I would have any leaks.* Not so - weepers only, but they are a nuisance, and I have one or two even when the system is under no pressure other than standing column of fuel in the manifold.* Asking why I had these weepers I was told by the owner of the local hydraulics store that JIC fittings have the same pitch and threads, but are machined better than NPT so they don't leak.* And, with JIC you can use swivels, flares and tube nuts for hose end terminations, and they are tight as can be.*

Here's a picture of Delfin's system.* The pump on the left is the first carbonator pump I used to replace the first Jabsco 'continuous duty' pump that wasn't.* The Jabsco on the right has since been replaced.* I have 7 tanks, so my system is a little more complicated, but you get the picture.* I put debug units on - you can see them at the top, and there are those who think them useless and those that think them useful.* They fixed a bacteria problem I had on another boat so I used them here.* The grey box is a digital timer that will turn the pumps on for any period of time, then off for another variable period of time.* This lets me refill the boiler tank when the boat is unattended for a couple of weeks at a time - on for 3 minutes, off for 10 days, or to continuously refill the day tank while underway - on for 1.5 minutes, off for an hour.* There are two filters, one to polish at 30 microns and one to transfer to the day tank at 10 microns.*

[img]download.spark?ID=857965&aBID=115492[/img]
Hope that helps.

-- Edited by Delfin on Friday 14th of January 2011 01:50:12 PM
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Old 01-14-2011, 01:17 PM   #49
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RE: Fuel Polishing

It does... In fact, I am still in Google hell doing lots of searches for diagrams of other people's systems and stumbled across the pic of yours on the Passage Maker forum.

Quiet is good, so I am considering the AC route now (I'm easily swayed ). However, would I need to go up in motor size if I decide to use a Racor 900 for the polisher or will the 1/4 horse still suffice?

Finally, can some explain what a de-bugger does?
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Old 01-14-2011, 03:04 PM   #50
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Gonzo, the 1/4 should work fine, but the diffential in cost to go to 1/3 is neglible.* The ProCon is used to work against pretty high pressures, which will never be developed, so your call.* Just match the flow of the ProCon to the 900 and you should be good to go either way.

Some will tell you that burying a potato in the backyard will do the same thing for your fuel as installing a Debug, but the theory of proponents is that the large magnets in the Debug pull apart the bacteria that can live in diesel tanks when moisture is present, killing them.* That was the problem I had on another boat - black bodies of bacteria building up and thretening to clog things up.* I installed a Debug, and the black bodies disappeared after one tank of fuel.* Maybe it was the potato....
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Old 01-14-2011, 04:08 PM   #51
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Quote:
Delfin wrote:I was told by the owner of the local hydraulics store that JIC fittings have the same pitch and threads, but are machined better than NPT so they don't leak.
Are you sure about what he told you?

A JIC fitting is a 37* flare fitting. The other end of the fitting might be a straight thread or NPT but unless it connects two tubing fittings together it won't be JIC.

The picture you posted shows countless NPT connections and only a handful of JIC fittings associated with the hoses plus a couple of O-ring bosses for the Racors. It looks like a lot of street ells and pipe nipples connecting female NPT hardware store ball valves to me.

*
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Old 01-14-2011, 05:02 PM   #52
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Quote:
RickB wrote:

*
Delfin wrote:I was told by the owner of the local hydraulics store that JIC fittings have the same pitch and threads, but are machined better than NPT so they don't leak.
A JIC fitting is a 37* flare fitting. The other end of the fitting might be a straight thread or NPT


I should have been more precise in my language. Single fittings with JIC on one end and NPT on the other are common.* On such fittings, the NPT side is more precisely machined since they are intended for use in high pressure hydraulic installations, and less likely to leak.

*
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Old 01-14-2011, 06:30 PM   #53
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RE: Fuel Polishing

So really, NPT would be fine, I'm guessing. What kind of sealing compound or thread tape should I use?
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Old 01-14-2011, 06:54 PM   #54
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Quote:
GonzoF1 wrote:What kind of sealing compound or thread tape should I use?
NPT fittings are fine. Don't use teflon tape, use a non-hardening thread sealant such as "Rectorseal."

*
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Old 01-14-2011, 07:02 PM   #55
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Fuel Polishing

No, I don't think so, if you mean regular pipe fittings.* Go to www.fittingandadapters.com and you'll see NPT fittings designed for usage for hydraulic installations.* Regular pipe fittings will weep, at least in my experience.* Use teflon paste, which only lubricates to prevent galling.

I got bored, and drew this up for you.* No warranties, and I am sure I have forgotten some key element - guaranteed - but it might be helpful.* The mystery fittings for the Racor have to come from them, as they are somewhat unique.* The part numbers for possible suppliers and the supplier are noted in the legend, but if you have a hydraulic supply shop locally, they can fix you up with the fittings you will need.[img]download.spark?ID=858142&aBID=115492[/img]



-- Edited by Delfin on Friday 14th of January 2011 08:03:21 PM
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Old 01-14-2011, 08:24 PM   #56
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Fuel Polishing

Good stuff again! I have a diagram ready-ish. I also have a local hydraulic supply store that has a warehouse and the willingness to be patient with me. I haven't decided if I want to fab-up a manifold myself OR just buy a Reverso 3-way manifold. They are small and efficient but pricey @ $200. I still haven't pulled the trigger on a filter yet. Still have to work that out. Nevertheless, we are headed to the boat tomorrow to take some measurements and see what will fit and how much work this really might be to replumb the whole sha-bang. It is at THE TOP of the list and will be done before Spring.

Headed to fittingandadaptors.com to look around.

(Steel fittings? Really?)(and why not get the fittings fromGrainger too?)


-- Edited by GonzoF1 on Friday 14th of January 2011 09:30:36 PM
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Old 01-14-2011, 08:30 PM   #57
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Good luck!
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Old 01-15-2011, 06:43 AM   #58
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Fuel Polishing

"Regular pipe fittings will weep, at least in my experience"

We assemble thousands of fittings daily where I work. We use Loctite 242 or 271 on aluminum, brass, steel or stainless*unless a customer specifies something else.
The fittings we seal with*loctite never leak. Never.
Many of our valves are in diesel fuel or fuel oil applications.

Apply the loctite around the fitting one or two treads up, then tighten. You don't have to torque the crap out of it, just make it "snug" and when the Loctite cures it won't leak or loosen.

EDIT: On fitting material....don't know if it has already been mentioned but do NOT use galvanized. It can come off and clog things up.


-- Edited by jleonard on Saturday 15th of January 2011 07:44:57 AM
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Old 01-15-2011, 08:58 AM   #59
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RE: Fuel Polishing

JLeonard - That was probably my problem.* I used permatex on stainless steel pipe fittings, and while everything was tight, two or three very inconveniently located fittings had to be removed, cleaned and redone, a problem I was told would not have occured had I used hydraulic JIC/NPT fittings.* Sounds like the Loctite would have also worked, thanks.

Gonzo:* One thing - if your fuel level can be above the top of the Racor, isolation valves should be installed on either side....
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Old 01-15-2011, 12:56 PM   #60
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RE: Fuel Polishing

Quote:
Delfin wrote:

Gonzo:* One thing - if your fuel level can be above the top of the Racor, isolation valves should be installed on either side....
Either side of what? What can happen? It's like that now (fuel can be above Racor), but no valves.
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