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Old 09-26-2017, 09:32 PM   #21
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...BTW, what are your thoughts as to why the engine in question stopped? In less than 500 words.
For me it was a loose ignition switch wire. Tightening the terminal screw fixed it. As for the fuel filter suggestions though, if it started and ran just fine thereafter, maybe it is a migrant spec of crud in the fuel line. SeeVee's Mainship 400 is diesel of course so I really should shut up. I know you diesel guys are always bleeding air out of your fuel lines and cooties and other slime grows in your fuel tanks, but other than that diesels are foreign territory to me. Okay, is that less than fi
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Old 09-26-2017, 09:51 PM   #22
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I keep my boat in Long Harbour in the warm months. recently, the private dock I rent space at has had to be renovated. I have had to vacate, when the barge was supposed to arrive. This happened more than once. I violated the basic rule: when starting the engines, put them under load for long enough to bring the temperature of the oil up enough to boil off any condensation and vaporize any volatiles. I simply motored the 1/4 mile up to the YC outstation and shut them down when I arrived. I did not idle for any appreciable time. I doubt that those few minutes of running at 4 knots, while still cold, will tweak the needle on abuse of the cylinder walls, but I still feel guilty about it...enough to bare my guilt here.

My first 1/2 of my boating life was in sail. There, engines don't last at all well. That is primarily due to so many startups being for just long enough to get out of the marina and get the sails up. No chance of getting the temperature up. I know of many sail boats being re-powered. I only know of few power boats being re-powered. It is not a coincidence.

Underloading is not the issue. If you underload, then maybe you will benefit from "blowing out the cobwebs" I am not convinced this is really an issue, as I characteristically run at 8 knots, using 4 GPH, so based on 20hp/gal/hr, I am using 80 hp to do so. That is 80 out of an available 400, so is the definition of underloading. A couple of years ago I had a catastrophic failure of my port engine. I believe it was due to a fire that occurred 15 years before, but took that long to make its damage known. When torn down, there was no glazing of the cylinder walls, the classic symptom of underloading, so I will continue to be sceptical of any advice to "blow out the cobwebs".
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Old 09-26-2017, 11:12 PM   #23
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Our boat's batt bank charger went on the fritz Memorial day weekend.

So... I started stbd engine each morning for approx 1-1/2 hrs.; cause its alternator also charges our batt bank. She reached full temp, purred sweetly, ran quietly and was smoke free at just above idle [1,300 rpm] to get full charge rate from the alternator. There are many pluses to gassers!

Since then I purchase a charger to work with gen set and shore power. Plan to soon install it.
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Old 09-27-2017, 12:24 AM   #24
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When I am preparing to leave the dock, I'll fire up the engines, untie dock lines and slowly idle out of the harbour. I will bump up the rpm's every few minutes thereafter til engines reach operating temp or close to it before opening them up to my cruise rpm's. I try to keep unloaded idle times down. As far as opening up to WOT to clear the pipes, I do that too, on occasion, but it is to clear the exhaust pipes, as soot builds up when the engines are under lighter loads as when cruising along at 6-8 knots. On my previous boat, with single diesel and dry exhaust stack, when I put the hammer down (WOT), large flakes of soot would blow out the exhaust, littering the deck. Also, there were times during the winter tie up, when I would start the main (monthly or every other month)and run it til the oil got up to temp, but I always had extra dock lines on and kept the boat in gear or else it would take forever to get up to operating temps.
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Old 09-27-2017, 06:04 AM   #25
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"If you must idle for long periods of time and you wish to get your temperatures, put it in gear."

YES!

In gear , under load, and never tied to a dock as you can move lots of material with the prop wash.

The slip or channel you wash closed may be your own .
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Old 09-27-2017, 09:52 AM   #26
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A lot of interesting replies...

I don't believe idle operation causes glazing. Glazing is almost always caused by improper break in procedures, and not operating at high enough power to break in the cylinders. Idle at break in time is not good and cause glazing.

As for operating at high power to remove carbon deposits, Yanmar has a procedure for that which I subscribe to and keeps the engine running cleaner, evidenced by the cleaner smoke out the exhaust. This is necessary for a lot of low power operation, which is typical of trawler operation.

Now, idling for an hour is not SOP, but should not be a reason the engine quit, nor am I convinced that any harm is done, and the opposing comments here don't make sense. But if you can back them up with real data, I'm listening. Yes, there are probably more carbon deposits with idle operation but a non issue is one does the racing procedure. Glazing? No way.

Ski's answer seems the most logical, and if someone has other possibilities to contribute, would be appreciated.
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Old 09-27-2017, 10:02 AM   #27
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S

If this was a genset the answer would be - it shut down due to a safety device trip. So here is the question, what engine (model and year) and what safety device trips are on it, if any.
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Old 09-27-2017, 10:07 AM   #28
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Mechanical injection engine, no safety trips on it at all. Typically no such shutdown system on this class of engine.

To the OP, was ignition still on and buzzer going off when you got back on the boat?
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Old 09-27-2017, 10:18 AM   #29
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Mechanical injection engine, no safety trips on it at all. Typically no such shutdown system on this class of engine.

To the OP, was ignition still on and buzzer going off when you got back on the boat?
Ski,

Yes, ignition on, and buzzer on.... which is normal for a engine that's not running.
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Old 09-27-2017, 10:48 AM   #30
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Seevee,

Once had a similar issue happen to me on a call out, wasn't at idle but low RPM , any way found nothing, but happened at the dock again a week later similar to your issue, after a lengthy search I deduced there was a temporary fuel line blockage, cleaned the tanks and did find some material large enough to temporary block the lines, any way cleaned up the tanks/system and never happened again.

I fully agree by the way regarding glazing issues from idling, infact IMHO it's quite the opposite as due to long periods of idling you get was is known as Cylinder Wash Down caused by the un burnt diesel washing away the oil or at least thinning the oil down thus causing premature wear between the rings and liner walls followed by loss of compression and finally failure altogether,(Long term)

This can be pretty much alleviated if you run at high idle, say 1000 rather than the normal 650-750 , also to mention that the more modern engines with their more precise timing and fuel delivery systems helps stopping this issue, the more of an issue for me is the clogging up of risers and the exhaust system generally,

Cheers Steve
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Old 09-27-2017, 11:26 AM   #31
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Here you go - read Steve on this topic. Maybe his opinion carries more weight?

The Perils of Chronic Under-Loading | Steve D'Antonio Marine Consulting
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Old 09-27-2017, 12:32 PM   #32
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There's lots of opinions on this, maybe because diffetent types and ages of engines live different lives.

We have discussed it here many times with no definitive answers eiter way.

But without cutting and pasting a bunch of stuff to lead newbies in tbe wrong direction, all I can say is learn as much as you can about your particular engine(s) from various sources.

We have seen even some experts here are suspect in their overall knowledge.
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Old 09-27-2017, 12:46 PM   #33
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For all of you who want to bury yourself deep in the study of the subject with data and expert opinions, have at it with this:

https://daim.idi.ntnu.no/masteroppga...teroppgave.pdf
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Old 09-27-2017, 01:50 PM   #34
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For all of you who want to bury yourself deep in the study of the subject with data and expert opinions, have at it with this:

https://daim.idi.ntnu.no/masteroppga...teroppgave.pdf
Good link BB. But the article and thesis focuses on low load, not NO load.

As example, there are studies and guidelines for no load engine operation when heavy equipment is purposely left running at idle during extreme cold weather. External oil and coolant heating can be utilized as well at these -40 conditions.

In Seevee's case doubtful you'd find any worthwhile data to support or counter his practices since no one recommends a prolonged cold start idle and walk away at the dock. Of course everyone has the opportunity do as they wish, no matter the rationale.
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Old 09-27-2017, 02:03 PM   #35
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There's lots of opinions on this, maybe because diffetent types and ages of engines live different lives.

We have discussex it here many times with no definitive answers eiter way.

But without cutting and pasting a bunch of stuff to lead newbies in tbe wrong direction, all I can say is learn as much as you can about your particular engine(s) from various sources.

We have seen even some experts here are suspect in their overall knowledge.
This is my believe too. I don't trust the experts and the generalizations. Know your own engine. Educate yourself. Then proceed. I read everywhere information on generators which is completely contrary to what the manufacturer has said on some of our gens.

I wouldn't personally run an engine and hour at idle but if Seavee feels ok doing it then fine. I have far more problem with leaving the engine running on an unattended boat for that length than any danger to the engine. I don't know how his temperatures look doing what he does or how clean his exhausts are or anything else pertinent. I wouldn't do it out of being extra cautious and not knowing if it might hurt or not, but that's just me and not something I can say he's right or wrong on. I also wouldn't be surprised or upset that run at idle and engine shut off.
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Old 09-27-2017, 02:32 PM   #36
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I don't think it is the best thing for the engine to idle, especially from a cold start, but I would not worry a bit about it.

I have logged LOTS of hours on my Cummins 6CTA 450 trolling at 600rpm, just a touch over base idle of 550. I know it is not the best thing for it, but I want fish and that's what it takes. So be it. If I need to put cylinder kits in, I will. And continue afterward to run it exactly the same.

One thing I do is right after cold start I kick up rpm to about 800 til I get the lines off. Do the same if I need to idle it in neutral. Quiets and smooths it out, and might keep oil moving a bit more.

Lots of engines have idled and idled and idled without any apparent harm.

Worry not.
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Old 09-27-2017, 02:34 PM   #37
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I think this issue is overblown at both ends.

IMO idling for 5 minutes or so won't do any damage to any diesel engine. And I do believe slowly warming up an engine is important. I usually take 15 minutes or more to reach normal cruise rpm. And if I accidentally take 15 minutes to get underway it I'm not going to be the least bit upset about it.

Coolant wise my little Mitsubishi S4L2 (37hp) idles after less than 10 minutes running from cold at 180f. It tops out at 190f at cruise. But just the coolant has warmed up .... not pistons, oil, camshaft or most other moving parts.

The reason for slow warmup is to allow engines parts to expand slowly and as close to evenly as possible. Exhaust valves for example warm very fast compared to camshafts.

I think the old saying "blow her out" is an old expression that has nothing to do w modern engines gas or diesel. Mechanical diesels propably do "load up" w excessive unburnt fuel under certian conditions that would only require 1/3 to 1/2 load to clear them of unburnt fuel .. not "let-er-rip" type running. None of the running mentioned above has ever caused any black smoke or anything similar.

Just my opinions.
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Old 09-27-2017, 02:48 PM   #38
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Regarding the engine quitting ...

I had that problem for years. Mostly just slowed down a little or a lot. It finally quit in Georgia Strait. Got towed by a passing boat - lucky me.

Later I concluded that bits of sealant was the cause (causes) of the slow downs/quitting. I took apart the entire fuel manifold replacing thr hoses, fittings and throughly cleaned all the pipe fittings using sealant sparingly and only on the upper threads. Hasn't missed a beat since.

I offer this as an engine quitting story but don't belive it's the OP's problem.
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Old 09-27-2017, 03:30 PM   #39
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Here you go - read Steve on this topic. Maybe his opinion carries more weight?

The Perils of Chronic Under-Loading | Steve D'Antonio Marine Consulting
Xsbank,

Good read, and I totally agree with it, as I do the report posted by BandB.

In the case of my idling for an hour, I must emphasize that it's not the norm, in fact this was the only time any one of my boats has idled for a hour... ever. It was one of those things... thought she was ready to board... just a few more minutes... a few more, and next thing it was an hour. I'll probably never do that again.

But, if the idling caused the engine to quit, I'd like to know. Will look deeper into things, just to try to confirm something.

Also, an hour of idling is not the best operation (same in cars and planes), but doubt that it hurt anything, unless it was the bulk of the operation.

BandBs article addresses "low load" as operations below 40% of max rated power, which isn't far from where a lot of us cruise. And the problems with continuous operation at low power are real, but not hard to avoid. One needs to have the temps up to burn off the contaminants, especially water. Surprising, it's about the same with aircraft engines (and that's my field as an A&P and AI), similar, but different.

As for glazing, I'd bet that the vast majority of the time, glazing is a result of poor break in, as noted by BandBs article.

How the heck did we get so far off topic :face palm:

But, appreciate all the comments.....
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Old 09-27-2017, 03:41 PM   #40
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But, if the idling caused the engine to quit, I'd like to know. Will look deeper into things, just to try to confirm something.

Also, an hour of idling is not the best operation (same in cars and planes), but doubt that it hurt anything, unless it was the bulk of the operation.

.
I doubt it hurt anything myself, but I'm not at all surprised the engine quit at some point in the process. Engines stop while idling a lot for different people, sometimes bad cases when they're docking. I have had cars in the past where the idling was set too low and they'd stop at lights occasionally, but as soon as the idle was set right, the issue was gone.

I think it could be one of a million things and unless it happens again with you on the boat you'll never have an idea. Even then you might not. Only if whatever caused it gets worse and more identifiable. Still my guess is it's nothing and as you say, you'd never left it for an hour of idling before so not like you can say this was unusual for it to quit. I wouldn't worry about it.

You could leave it idling and sit in the boat and wait to see how long it will run before it quits, but personally I think that would be sort of dumb to do.
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