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Old 21-10-2014, 20:49   #46
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

Ya know, yytrill,

It might be worth your while to see if any of the Aussie CF members would be interested to come along to help you deliver the boat back to Sydney or split the journey, Gladstone to Brisbane, Brissie to Sydney. Just a thought.

Ann
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Old 21-10-2014, 21:55   #47
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

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Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
Don't misunderstand--I'm not advocating a complete engine overhaul unless that's what it needs. You might have to learn to do some of it yourself. But I do think that a single-handed Roberts 53, with no motor, is unseaworthy. And I do hope you won't rely on emergency services to help you complete your trip.

The picture you painted through your numerous posts left me with the impression of an older, home-built boat, cluttered with aging, failing and redundant gear, which has begun to fall on hard times due to insufficient funds for proper and timely maintenance, and whose systems have been jury rigged or abandoned and replaced, just to keep going. Things were falling apart. So the owner asks for help...and there we were...trying to envision what the problem might be, with a boat we've never seen, based on information that is so often difficult to extract and harder to interpret.

Figured I'd be safe going with the "make it seaworthy" first routine.
I would be totally paranoid single handing without a motor! But it does have a working motor, which has just done 150nm without an issue. the only problem is that it doesn't start as it used to which is triggering warning bells! I hope investigating the issue is something you'd praise :-)

As to the build: the hull was home built. The builder made a number of mistakes like not cutting limber holes under the stringers. The boat was then bought by an experienced sailor and shipwright and the fittout completed. She was launched in 1998. The fitout was unquestionably done to a very limited budget: the fellow was Dutch and he could weld, even the sliders (cars) that run the mainsail up the mast track were hand made. i will comment that this system worked a lot better than my current professionally built mast track: the sliders jam and break. [The old rig used galvanised wire with a wooden mast bought on the cheap .. actually it came off the Winston Churchill which sank with loss of life in the 1998 Sydney to Hobart .. possibly because they put a rigid alloy mast on an old wooden boat].

So the boat was only 10 years old when I bought it, not new but certainly not old. Since buying it I have replaced almost everything. It's been well maintained. The one thing I haven't been able to afford is new sails. I also haven't been able to complete building the second autopilot. The old one only started to play up on this trip.

So you are partly right: there were issues with many of the systems but most have been fixed: it's not an old boat falling into disrepair, but a relatively new boat built on the cheap where some of the builds were good and some were not so good. By far the worst things at the moment, IMHO, are: concrete ballast in the keel, a badly constructed in-keel fuel tank, an unreliable autopilot, and a missing Mermaid.
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Old 21-10-2014, 22:26   #48
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

If your engine starts and runs after heating the glow plugs, but refuses to start properly otherwise, then it is likely your engine is a little worn and compression is low for some reason.
As an earlier post suggested, just use the glow plugs on starting until you have a chance to troubleshoot the engine.

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Old 21-10-2014, 22:47   #49
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

Is this the injection pump on your engine?



If so, it's a Bosch VE type injection pump (or a Bosch knock off), and it has an internal rotary vane pump that will pull fuel. The pump itself is lubricated by this fuel; operation without fuel will destroy it.

A brief description of the pump and its' operation can be found here:

Bosch VE-type Distributor Pump (Automobile)

and here:

Robert Bosch VE-type Injection Pump


I don't think running the engine low on oil would have caused the problem you describe. My first guess would be like others, fuel supply problems.
Like others, my simple solution would be a cheap inline fuel pump like this



installed just before the filters. It would make changing the filters and bleeding the system much easier. The pump shown is 19.99 on ebay.

That being said, the symptoms might be pointing to some internal wear on the injection pump, maybe poorly seating check valves or something along those lines.

Unfortunately, we can't answer that via an online forum.
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Old 22-10-2014, 01:01   #50
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

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Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Ya know, yytrill,

It might be worth your while to see if any of the Aussie CF members would be interested to come along to help you deliver the boat back to Sydney or split the journey, Gladstone to Brisbane, Brissie to Sydney. Just a thought.

Ann
There's not really anywhere to stay in Gladstone except the boat harbour which costs money. It's hard to get into in a N wind too, and going in brings me Westerly when I really want to go far out to sea to cope with any SE winds that come along. It's also too close to Yeppoon to really bother. I might stop at Lady Musgrave if I need a rest.

I am probably stopping at Southport, Gold Coast: Brisbane is a bad idea, it's hard to get out of. Used to live there on the boat at RQYS. However if I have N winds I may just keep going, otherwise the SE trades may set in again and I will have to wait again for a N'thly break.

Last time I advertised here for crew I was ridiculed for asking for money. I'm not rich enough to pay for anyone else. So I won't be doing that again: I use Gumtree to try to find backpackers. It's actually cheaper for them than staying in a Hostel. Whereas an Australian would be paying for their land accommodation and also for the trip. I can understand: I have done some deliveries myself and of course I charge for that
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Old 22-10-2014, 01:45   #51
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

Sorry, I hadn't followed your travails about crew.

What I was thinking was different. I had it in mind no exchange of money, though they might pay for their own food, if needs be. I had thought, they'd get an adventure, you'd get another pair of eyes to help you take advantage of the northerlies. And maybe if you go 5 or 6 degrees East, you'll be able to sail straight through to SYD. Remember, the farther off the coast you are, it's easier to singlehand.

Good luck with it, mate.

Ann
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Old 22-10-2014, 16:59   #52
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

Quote:
If your engine starts and runs after heating the glow plugs, but refuses to start properly otherwise, then it is likely your engine is a little worn and compression is low for some reason.
As an earlier post suggested, just use the glow plugs on starting until you have a chance to troubleshoot the engine.
There is another possible cause of the problem and that is fuel with a lower cetane rating. You mentioned that you are in the tropics and you may have added some fuel that is not up to snuff compared to what you had been using. You might try adding a cetane booster.
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Old 22-10-2014, 20:20   #53
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

Some diesel engine fuel pumps have limits on lift. A day tank as suggested by others might help. The maximum lift of the engines fuel pump s/b available from manufacturer. Or perhaps an electric fuel pump feeding the rail but proper return w/b required.

Best of luck, Don
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Old 22-10-2014, 21:31   #54
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

Simply the best system I have seen, for a cruising sailboat, uses a day tank which gravity feeds fuel filters, and to which fuel is returned. A high capacity manual pump is used to transfer fuel to the day tank from any tank. Gravity feed virtually eliminates air leak problems. And any fuel leaks are easily found and corrected. Another advantage comes from the easy and accurate management of fuel supplies, as the day tank easily accepts a sight gauge. Also a water drain is easily incorporated.
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Old 23-10-2014, 00:03   #55
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

FYI: sorry not replying to some posts but my internet got very flaky. I had to move the boat today and the engine started without faltering and without glo. Don't you just love intermittent faults?

I want to thank everyone that contributed discussion on this issue. I certainly learned a lot! I'm planning to go to sea in a couple of days when favourable N winds arrive for several days, and I'll be heading as far offshore as I can. [You know, land is dangerous stuff!] So I'll be out of contact for a while (Track my yacht "Love of Gaia" with any AIS tracking website).
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Old 23-10-2014, 00:31   #56
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

Good luck on your trip.
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Old 23-10-2014, 03:08   #57
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

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Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
Simply the best system I have seen, for a cruising sailboat, uses a day tank which gravity feeds fuel filters, and to which fuel is returned. A high capacity manual pump is used to transfer fuel to the day tank from any tank. Gravity feed virtually eliminates air leak problems. And any fuel leaks are easily found and corrected. Another advantage comes from the easy and accurate management of fuel supplies, as the day tank easily accepts a sight gauge. Also a water drain is easily incorporated.
I agree. Down the track I hope to install some extra tanks, and replace my 30 litre generator tank with a larger "day" tank (i.e. one that can hold enough fuel to motor for an actual day). In fact I'm thinking a couple of "44 gallon drums" might be a cheap way to do this. My 300 litre plastic fuel tank cost over $1000.

Has anyone tried this?
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Old 23-10-2014, 03:29   #58
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

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Originally Posted by DeepFrz View Post
There is another possible cause of the problem and that is fuel with a lower cetane rating. You mentioned that you are in the tropics and you may have added some fuel that is not up to snuff compared to what you had been using. You might try adding a cetane booster.
Oh, thanks for that reference! Had no idea about any of that, Wikipedia to the rescue.
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Old 23-10-2014, 03:52   #59
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

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Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
I had it in mind no exchange of money, though they might pay for their own food, if needs be. I had thought, they'd get an adventure, you'd get another pair of eyes to help you take advantage of the northerlies. And maybe if you go 5 or 6 degrees East, you'll be able to sail straight through to SYD. Remember, the farther off the coast you are, it's easier to singlehand.
Ann
Needs be: I can't pay for someone else's food. The problem here is that most people reading this forum own their own boats. So they'd be doing me a favour, rather than having an adventure. It would seem rude if I charged them to help me, but that's the way it has to be.

On the other hand backpackers save money sailing with me, and also get an adventure.

It's not just food. Other things cost too: cleaning materials, fuel i wouldn't use unless pressed into someone else's schedule, and of course maintenance burden accelerates. I charge about $25 per day to cover everything. I'm sure you agree the real cost is very much higher.

Love to meet you two, you're famous
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Old 23-10-2014, 05:55   #60
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Re: Diesel dies on startup

before the hell broke loose inside ka lunk, it was doing this shut off after 15 min of working.. we found out the pick up was allowing a bubble of air into the injector pump and shut off engine.
we reshaped the pick up to allow that bubble to rise to surface of tank instead of going up the tubing into engine.
fixed that problem.
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