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Old 07-13-2008, 02:06 PM   #1
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Replumbing fuel system

Just spent a miserable few hours trying to unsuccessfully bleed my canister type off engine fuel filter using the engine lift pump (>1400 strokes) whilst drifting up the St Mary's River en route to Sault Saint Marie.
I want to move to spin-on filters for the 2 off- engine and the common on engine filters and would also like to permanently install outboard engine squeeze bulbs between each tank and its dedicated off engine filter. Has anyone done this and are there any cautions on what I'm proposing.
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Old 07-13-2008, 06:45 PM   #2
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

Hiya,

Bummer Mr. Jon, what engine? American Diesel is the usual source for Lehmans and I have heard that Trans Atlantic Diesel stocks Perkins parts. Have you considered Racor filters rather than the spin on types? With a Racor system you can "see" dirt in the bottom of the filter bowls.
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Old 07-13-2008, 08:53 PM   #3
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

You might want to install an electric fuel pump to prime bleed and transfer fuel. I turn on the electric pump to pressure up/prime the fuel line before starting, use the pump to bleed the fuel engine lines, transfer fuel between tanks, and polish/clean the fuel when tied to the dock.

I carry a 2 gallon fuel tank of diesel to fill the filter canisters to the top, so there is little/no air to bleed. Every with the twist on filters you still have to fill the filters and bleed the air out. You might want to install Racor double fuel filters with a vacuum gages so you can check the vacuum gauges and see if the filters needs to be change way ahead of time, and switch to the second filter while changing out the dirty filter. I change the engine canaster filter at the dock every years but the Racor filters are the primary filters that are check every time we leave the dock and even while underway as we carry extra Racor filters.
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Old 07-14-2008, 12:05 AM   #4
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

Parker-Hamlin (sp?) (parent company of Racor) has a conversion kit to change the multi-part cannister secondary fuel filters on a Lehman 120 or a Perkins (don't know which model) to a spin-on. On the FL120, two kits are needed since there are two secondary filters in line on that engine. The kit retains the original top casting, the part that's attached to the engine and contains the bleed screws. The kit mounts in place of the cannister filter itself. We did this to our two FL120s a bunch of years ago. One big advantage is that the spin-on filters can be filled with fuel before installing them, thereby considerably reducing the amount of pumping with the leverl on the fuel lift pump. At the time we did this, one of the kits cost about $50. It includes two mounting bolts, one short for the FL120 and one long for the Perkins. The instructions make it clear which one to use.

If the cam that drives the fuel lift pump on the FL120 is in the "wrong" place you can pump all day on the manual pump lever and not accomplish anything. If this is the case, "bump" the engine with the starter to get the cam turned to the right place to allow a full stroke with the manual lever.
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Old 07-14-2008, 05:54 AM   #5
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

I used the spin-on adaptors from this place on my FL120.* A bit pricy, but they went on as advertised and have been working ever since.* And this was the first time I changed the filters and bled the system on my new-to-me 1974 MT.* The whole operation went off without a hitch - and without an electric fuel pump.

http://www.abcprecision.com/
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Old 07-14-2008, 09:30 AM   #6
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

Many thanks for the prompt responses.
Decided to pull the off-engine filter apart and the inlet connection was plugged with "stringy" material. (The PO had it down south a couple of times). This was probably the reason for the 1400 strokes (I had ensured the cam was correct by bleeding the "good "parallel filter).
I've managed to accumulate the various fitting I'll need to install the bulb, which I have so I'll give it a shot.
Phil, the electric pump would be ideal but I need to lay out the correct pipe routing then order the parts - rather than my normal Rube G. bodge-ups.
Still would be interested if anyone has used an outboard bulb!
I found some people in Michigan*who carry the conversion for *the single CAV on-engine for my Perkins HT6354 but want to really think it thru. I need to find replacement cannisters with 10 and 2 micron sizing - not sure what size is the generic I'm using for the 3 locations now.
Updates to follow.
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Old 07-14-2008, 12:27 PM   #7
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

"The stringy stuff was probably "Teflon Tape" used on a fitting.* Diesel dissolves it really fast. "

Diesel doesn't dissolve teflon tape. If it did you wouldn't find any wandering around where it shouldn't be.

Improper use of teflon tape is what leads to it being distributed throughout whatever system it's used on. Too much tape wrapped the wrong direction too close to the end of a pipe thread or use on a straight fitting is normally what happens. It's not the tape it's the taper, no pun intended.

It is easy to look up the directions on how to use the stuff. The best advice is to not use it on any system where improper use can lead to system failure.
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Old 07-15-2008, 03:57 AM   #8
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

For fittings that NEED tape as sealant , simply use the Yellow colored teflon , which is made for hydrocarbons.

At your local box store.

The Yellow tape is 4 times thicker (my guess) and if wrapped a thread in from the end of the pipe or fitting will not tear out and give hassles.

Biggest mistake is not cleaning both surfaces of old tape when reusing a fitting.

The extra strong Yellow usually just unwinds intact.

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Old 07-15-2008, 06:15 AM   #9
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

I don't believe "unwinds intact" is what is supposed to happen. Seems to me 1 1/2 wrap of tape is whats called for. Then when tightened the tape is cut by the threads and takes up the space between the peaks and valleys of the threads to seal them. A great alternative to tape is Loctite 567 thread sealant.
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Old 07-15-2008, 12:41 PM   #10
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

Fitted a primer bulb to one side (the side that was plugged) and in less than 5 minutes,all bled and running like a charm.
The "stringy stuff" laid on a paper towel, turned to black dust over the course of 4 hours so I presume it was organic.
I pulled off the other side filter(the one that had run successfully for the last 10 hours), and it was filled with a black jelly like substance, which filled the head space on the filter base and was oozing out of the inner anulus of the filter. On that happy note. I relocated my oil change pump and pulled 100 litres out of the bottom of each of my cylindrical tanks - looked like the creature from the Blackk Lagoon. I then returned it thru a Racor Baja filter which screened out about 4 litres of water contaminated diesel and about a litre of black snot and strings.
Not sure if I got it all as I'm not sure of the baffle config in the tanks so I 'll try changing one of the Off engine filters in 10 hours.
The blessing is it happened where it did and not between 2 harbours of refuge in Lake Superior.
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Old 07-16-2008, 03:55 AM   #11
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

Yuk! I'd suggest shocking the tank with Startron's diesel additive, or even PRI-D, then using either to maintain the tank. I've used Startron for years with great success, and I hear that the PRI-D works well too. Startron is sold at West, etc., it was formerly Soltron and that name is still sold as well. Same stuff.

http://www.navstore.com/soltron.aspx
http://www.priproducts.com/
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Old 07-16-2008, 04:01 AM   #12
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

and it was filled with a black jelly like substance,

At least you can use it to pave a driveway!

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Old 07-16-2008, 09:14 AM   #13
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RE: Replumbing fuel system

It sounds like the fuel needs to be filter/polished/cleaned* If the old fuel is darker in color than the color of new fuel then the fuel is probable turning back to tar/asphalt which will gum up the filters and fuel lines.* A clean fuel system is only 2 to 7 PSI. **I would not venture very far before installing double Racor filters with several spare filters and cleaning/polishing the fuel.* If you want I can e-mail you a fuel polishing diagram that you can use as a reference.

*
Do you know how much fuel your engines draw and return back to the tank?* A 671 DD will draw about 60 gallons per hour and return what is not used which is about 50, so the fuel is filters/clean when the engine is running.* The best time to filter/clean the fuel is when the fuel has been shaken up so the dirt/stuff is suspended in the fuel and not settled out.

*
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