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Old 17-10-2017, 20:10   #31
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

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thanks Ken, Pete, and David.
just what I needed to know.
milk carton.
wall paper scraper
CAV filter bolted on a board with a Facet 12V pump.

The Reverso module looks excellent
+1...Thanks for the tips guys. Much appreciated.

Gos
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Old 17-10-2017, 23:43   #32
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

Our system is set up completely separate from the engine and generator fuel systems with it's own send and return at opposite ends of the tank, which are placed near the tank bottom.

Here's a CF thread on our install from a few years ago. Fuel Polishing System Installation
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Old 18-10-2017, 03:07   #33
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

Most fuel polishing systems are simply filter systems, and no different from the filtering system you have on your engine, pump and filters.

The good systems agitate the fuel in the tanks assuring that contaminates get stirred up and filtered.
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Old 18-10-2017, 03:22   #34
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

Dale,

When are you expecting to arrive here in the Adriatic so I can show you the correct way to do all things cruising?
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Old 18-10-2017, 03:45   #35
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

A while yet I'm afraid, I'll just have to stumble along until then.
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Old 18-10-2017, 04:19   #36
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

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Most fuel polishing systems are simply filter systems, and no different from the filtering system you have on your engine, pump and filters.
The difference is that the engine filtration system only returns a small amount of fuel, relative to the tank volume, back to the tank. So the engine filtration does very little to filter the fuel the tank.

A polishing system's only job is to filter the fuel in the tank, hopefully keeping this fuel and more optimistically the tank clean. This means the engines filtration system has an easy time.

As you point out the actual polishing filter is much the same (or in some cases exactly the same) as the primary engine filter.

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The good systems agitate the fuel in the tanks assuring that contaminates get stirred up and filtered.
Sailing is great way to agitate the fuel in the tank. It is something that every sailboat owner should try occasionally .
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Old 18-10-2017, 04:51   #37
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

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Would it be possible to run the intake and output hose of the homemade polisher both in the access panel? one hose to the bow end, the other hose to the stern end. polish fuel right in the tank without disconnecting any existing hoses.
Yes it would. I have a sight tube on the side of the tank so use that for the supply hose and stick the return in the deck filler. However, if a more permanent option is required I could tap into the engine return line near the tank.
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Old 18-10-2017, 05:17   #38
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Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

I lightly polish fuel when needed by removing the gauge sender and inserting a copper tube to the bottom. I hook the tube via fuel Hose to a small fuel pump. Pump to a clear jug and back to the tank. Small pump means slow speed so water settles - with lots of the crud. Every few hours, I decant the fuel part of the jug back into the tank and store the rest for hazardous waste disposal.

I pulled off as much as 3 gallons of water and crud when we added water to the Diesel tank.

It isnít perfect, it isnít as good as polishing, but itís 30 bucks and got me going when I had bad fuel on a Caribbean trip. You can do it at night in the Anchorage, it doesnít draw much off your battery bank, and it doesnít take much space. The rest of the crud and water and probably be handled by a normal Racor in the normal way.
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Old 18-10-2017, 07:08   #39
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

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Thanks for the details on how to clean the tank. I hate reinventing the wheel, and now I have a place to start. In a couple of weeks the fun will begin.
Hey Dave. Would you take pictures and post them here?
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Old 18-10-2017, 07:55   #40
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

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Hey Dave. Would you take pictures and post them here?
I will be happy to post pictures of the tank cleaning. The fuel has been in the tank for ten years and because I am a catamaran, I have two fifty gallon tanks. I have been fearing the worst and hoping for the best.

I have previously had fuel in the tanks for three years without a problem, but ten years could be a pandoras box of unanticipated challenges. I suspect that it is going to be very messy and one of the less fun jobs on the refit. I hope I am wrong.
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Old 18-10-2017, 08:30   #41
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

So if the engine fuel filter doesn't filter fuel what does it do? 10 micron is 10micron. Don't miss interpret me, I'm all for a good polishing (separate fuel filtration) system but there's no magic to these things.
On my last boat I put in two three way valves and a cube pump which enabled me to bypass the engine and clean the fuel prior to passage. Running all my fuel through a 2micron racor insured my fuel was clean, this was important cruising Asia. But it wasn't a great system as the pump and line size weren't large enough to return enough fuel both in volume and pressure to agitate the fuel in the tank, it was adequate but not great.
I agree sailing agitates the fuel in the tank but check out a tank that hasn't been cleaned in years and there's often alot of sludge. My point is some fuel polishes (BTW who makes these names up) are better than others, the ones that return greater volume and preferably under some pressure imo are the ones to get, filters are filters.

What am I missing, happy to learn.
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Old 18-10-2017, 08:42   #42
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

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How much is polishing now days? The thing is, they do it significant pressure, removing much of the debris clinging to the tank etc. And it's done and ready in a few hours. These low flow units will clean the fuel, but not the tank much.
Just read this, it's the point I'm trying to make.
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Old 18-10-2017, 08:52   #43
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

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I was hoping that fuel polishing would clean the tank, but this thread seems to say that tank cleaning and fuel polishing are two separate things.

So I am going to have to pump out my tanks, get the goop out of them, and then put the polished fuel back in.

But how do you get the goop out once you scrape it off the walls of the tank? Do you put rags on a stick and wipe it off a bit at a time? Is there any easy way to suck the goop out.

I guess i will have to bend a big metal putty knife into a goop scoop. This sound like a slow and probably challenging job.
On my last boat I just did it the dirty way, I sponged it out and squeezed it into a bucket. Made up a temporary polishing system using a 10 micron water filter, garden hose and pump and filtered all the fuel back in. This was done off a beautiful tropical island right on the equator, my first ever experience regarding dirty fuel. That's what you get when fuel is delivered to you via canoe.. Lol.
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Old 18-10-2017, 10:54   #44
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

I highly recommend the Racor P510. This, or a similar on-board polishing system, is standard on high end motor and sailing boats. The owner is advised to install a 7A fuse. Instead, I recommend a 7A breaker. The purpose of the fuse is to blow when the motor works too hard because the filter is clogging. So, it would be easier to just reset a breaker than to keep changing fuses. Also, I recommend a DC microcontroller unit (can be bought for $25 or so) be installed so that you can program the unit.
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Old 18-10-2017, 11:29   #45
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Re: Fuel Polishing- Racor P510

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So if the engine fuel filter doesn't filter fuel what does it do? 10 micron is 10micron.
The engine filter filters the fuel entering the engine (unless it becomes overwhelmend with debris or water) but it does very little to filter the fuel in the tank itself.

In practice the tank gradually acumulates debris and water with time. This largely goes unnoticed until it overwhelmes the primary engine filter. Often this is at the worst time when an offshore pasage stirs up the fuel in the tank.

Polishing is not the only solution. The tank can be physically cleaned (about every 5-10 years seems the average necessary for reliable deisel operation, but this is very variable depending on the quality of the fuel etc).

Other steps such as trying to buy the best quality fuel, checking the quality and filtering the fuel before it even enters the tank are all important steps.

Cleaning a diesel tank is not easy or pleasant so fuel polishing is worth considering, especially as the combination of bio fuels, larger tanks, and engines that are less tolerant of poor fuel, seem to have resulted in large increase in fuel related problems.
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