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Old 04-07-2021, 08:23 AM   #1
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Abnormal Diesel oil analysis.

I made an offer to purchase a trawler. The oil analysis came back not good with some critical severe and abnormal. They are 1989 Ford Lehman 6 cyl turbo charged diesels, 275 hp with about 3000. hours. Would you buy a boat with these readings? The engines ran strong during the sea trial with no smoke. With these readings,


I am concerned that these engines are on the verge of requiring a rebuild.

What am I looking at?
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Old 04-07-2021, 08:34 AM   #2
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Appears to be bearing material. I’m looking at the picture on an iPad which makes it hard to read. I see nothing indicating hour on the oil. Do you know what the hours on the oil are?

Just seems like a lot of iron also which would indicate other issues. I’m sure other with more experience will chime in with a better understanding of the numbers.
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Old 04-07-2021, 08:43 AM   #3
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The high sodium could be from coolant or water ingestion into motor along with the high copper content. How are the heat exchangers and maintenance on them? Fresh water or salt water kept? If you are still interested in the boat, I would look into an engine survey!

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Old 04-07-2021, 08:45 AM   #4
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Were the results similar in both engines?


Have the engines been inspected by a diesel mechanic, especially knowing the oil sample results?


Personally, I would walk away. The combination of sodium and wear metals suggested salt water got in the engine with resulting corrosion. That almost certainly means new engines.


But the guy you want to hear from is Ski_in_NC, so contact him if he doesn't reply on his own.
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Old 04-07-2021, 09:16 AM   #5
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Report shows 100 hours on oil and 3000 engine hours
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Old 04-07-2021, 09:54 AM   #6
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Decent article by Steve D on oil analysis and offers some indicators of what each elevated number might indicate. He also has several pdf articles if you google "Steve D'Antionio oil analysis"

https://stevedmarineconsulting.com/oil-analysis/

High aluminum is from pistons. High iron levels is probably from the cylinders, but could be some simple rust. Copper? Not sure - might be indicative of the bearings, but I would expect Chromium to be high in that case.

The aluminum is enough for me - I'd move on to another boat myself.

Peter
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:02 AM   #7
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One engine had normal sodium ... suggesting the one with abnormal sodium brought salt water in somehow.
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:03 AM   #8
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100 hours on the oil, according to the owner.
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:19 AM   #9
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Iron and aluminum could be from pistons/cylinders. Copper usually from bushing bearings like wristpin bearings. Sodium is usually from seawater. Definitely looks like a problem engine.
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:24 AM   #10
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The engines were strong on sea trial.
I suspect the oil and water heat exchangers. Where else does tin and lead come from. Mine were '0'. The report does not present the same as Blackstone that also gives universal averages and same engine averages to give a benchmark to compare with.

I wonder how the same test would look like if the oil was changed.
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:26 AM   #11
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How much calendar time on the oil? Copper can leach from oil cooler, really nothing to worry about there. More will be present with more calendar time. To some extent Fe and Al too. Those numbers like kinda normal too.

The Na is troubling. There may be a bit of coolant weep of a head gasket, but that could be so minor to be a non-issue, especially with a lot of calendar time. A few drips a month can really add up if oil has been in there for four years.

Not likely sea water, as it has a ratio of Na to K of about 40:1 and the K reading is nil. Some coolants have lots of Na, and some lots of Na and K, but that varies with the particular coolant formulation.

Look in the oil fill caps with a good light and see if there is any corrosion on the valve gear. Should be grey shiny metal with no rust.
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:28 AM   #12
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Owner said both engines had valve jobs four years ago. Also, one turbo looks newer than the other, but must have been done by a previous owner.
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:39 AM   #13
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Ski your knowledge is impressive.
I must be the only one here that has to look up what Na, K, Fe etc is.
Any reason you cannot speak english and refer to post 1 names on the report?
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:41 AM   #14
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Quote:
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Owner said both engines had valve jobs four years ago. Also, one turbo looks newer than the other, but must have been done by a previous owner.
That would suggest an answer of 4 calendar years on the oil, as I would change the oil after doing that work to start fresh.
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Old 04-07-2021, 11:45 AM   #15
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That would suggest an answer of 4 calendar years on the oil, as I would change the oil after doing that work to start fresh.
But would you buy the boat? Could be old oil but maybe not. Not sure where aluminum came from if only a valve job.

I'd pass on the boat. Maybe it's fine. I wouldn't want the chance it's not.

Good luck whichever direction you go.

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Old 04-07-2021, 12:12 PM   #16
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But would you buy the boat? Could be old oil but maybe not. Not sure where aluminum came from if only a valve job.

I'd pass on the boat. Maybe it's fine. I wouldn't want the chance it's not.

Good luck whichever direction you go.

Peter
If I was interested in the boat I would investigate further. For instance there are aluminum heat exchangers available. I would not use one with salt water cooling, but suppose the one on the boat IS aluminum. Suddenly it changes the oil report.
Oil sample testing is becoming the norm. What if the next boat you look at had the oil changed a month before but the seller says it was done two years ago, some 200 hours ago. The oil test would come back looking good for two year old oil.
I watched the video at the end of your link, that was very informative and everyone should watch it.
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Old 04-07-2021, 01:12 PM   #17
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If I was interested in the boat I would investigate further. For instance there are aluminum heat exchangers available. I would not use one with salt water cooling, but suppose the one on the boat IS aluminum. Suddenly it changes the oil report.
Oil sample testing is becoming the norm. What if the next boat you look at had the oil changed a month before but the seller says it was done two years ago, some 200 hours ago. The oil test would come back looking good for two year old oil.
Well, there's an engine I won't own. Okay with aluminim in an outboard (no real choice), but not aluminum on the main. Some of the Perkins' 6.354s had aluminum housings for the heat exchange and it's a fragile part.

Sure, seller could be dishonest and misrepresent hours. If the boat doesn't have maintenance records or they look like they were all written-up at once, that's a problem in and of itself.

A powerboat has two basic jobs: it must float, and it must have an engine. The engine oil analysis the OP shared shows a serious flaw in one of those two criteria.

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Old 04-07-2021, 02:10 PM   #18
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Well, there's an engine I won't own. Okay with aluminim in an outboard (no real choice), but not aluminum on the main.

Sorta depends on the component. I had 2 aluminum block Jimmy 6-71’s. I would prefer iron blocks but I have to admit they were really solid even after 50 years.
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Old 04-07-2021, 02:53 PM   #19
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The 5000 hour Lehman in the boat I just sold had miniscule numbers of those elements with 80 hours on the oil.
If it were me I'd also pass on this one.
Unless you feel lucky
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Old 04-07-2021, 03:18 PM   #20
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The 5000 hour Lehman in the boat I just sold had miniscule numbers of those elements with 80 hours on the oil.
If it were me I'd also pass on this one.
Unless you feel lucky
Jay, the jury is still out. Bailing is an option.

These engines means more than one and only one oil report shown. Both engines ran strong at sea trial.

As I said if interested in the boat, I will first exhaust the investigation to ensure the test was not a false positive, misleading information. I have alluded to how a clean report can be manufactured by an underhanded seller. Most boats are sold because the current owner got tired of fixing things and may have let it go to long. So expect things to fix will be normal.

Can you buy it at that right price and solve the problems to bring it to market value, that is my approach.
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