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Old 13-02-2019, 08:27   #1
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Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

My freshly rebuilt Perkins Prima T80 turbo is smoking and spitting diesel, and I need some help please. i know I'm always the one asking stupid questions and being annoying, but the guys are telling me this is either "normal" or "dunno" or "it'll stop eventually" and I'm getting a bit fed up. I've worked on engines before, tho never diesels...it can't be normal to smoke worse than the 50 year old fishing tubs going past my bow every morning... It cost a lot of money I don't have and I'm not leaving without a properly done engine. Please, any diesel mavens out there chime in and let me know where / how to start diagnosing this....

Ever since the rebuild, the engine has been smoking no more and no less than what's in the video. Initially it spat some oil, but probably this was leftover due to a leaky old turbo which was replaced with new. On startup a few days ago (cold start, not run in a few weeks) it spat diesel enough to slick the water a good 5 meters all around the boat (see pic), never before and not again. But it never stopped smoking like this. Where should I start looking???

Here are the facts: 1991 Perkins. Rebuilt and rebored, this was the first rebuild. Everything looked good. Injectors checked out good. New turbo installed. Ran about 20 hours, 14 of which were under 2/3 load in the water, the rest idling at the marina. No change in smoke based on temps outside or in engine, or hours run (six hour under load run, still the same). Engine temps normal (80 C). Engine sounds fine, no vibration or off-beat rhythm. Just the smoke.

Anyone, I would very much appreciate some tips on where to get started.... Thanks so much!
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Old 13-02-2019, 08:38   #2
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

Since my video is processing forever, the smoke is fairly thick and white/blue, it's hard to tell which and almost seems to alternate....
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Old 13-02-2019, 09:18   #3
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

White is unburned fuel, blue is oil. Offhand is sounds like a bad injector. Bores and rings should be good. You need a mechanic and a leak down test. Maybe a compression test to start looking for major issues.
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Old 13-02-2019, 09:30   #4
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

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Originally Posted by Lepke View Post
White is unburned fuel, blue is oil. Offhand is sounds like a bad injector. Bores and rings should be good. You need a mechanic and a leak down test. Maybe a compression test to start looking for major issues.
I thought white was water vapour and grey/black was unburned fuel??
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Old 13-02-2019, 10:23   #5
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

Can’t see video. Check injector timing. Bet it’s way off.
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Old 13-02-2019, 10:49   #6
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

Injectors if it is white it could be the wrong needle valve. some times you can loosen the bolts on the injector and turn it a bit to adjust. I know this from a replacing an injector on a bobcat it ran bad and lots of white smoke could not adjust when it was brought back to Bosch they found that it had too small of valve. it was replaced and all was good.
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Old 13-02-2019, 10:49   #7
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

here's the vid again...
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Old 13-02-2019, 11:43   #8
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

It sounds as though the injection pump timing is late, retarded. (Whte/gray smoke, especially at cold start, and spitting raw fuel) This often happens when CAV pumps are removed and reinstalled. Look at the top of the mounting flange on the injection pump and the corresponding engine mounting surface. There should be 2 marks, one on the engine and one on the injection pump. They should be aligned. The injection pump needs to be rotated in the OPPOSITE direction of rotation in your case. Look at the blue tag on the side of the injection pump, the injection pump needs to rotate in the OPPOSITE of the arrow on the tag. Loosen the 3 injection pump mounting nuts slightly, and rotate the pump, ENGINE NOT RUNNING, until the marks align. In your case you may have to rotate about 1/16" more than the mark alignment, because it sounds like it is quite retarded. The injection pump can be timed by lining up the engine timing marks with the engines #1 piston on compression stroke and aligning the timing marks under the tear drop shaped cover on the injection pump. SEE MANUAL.
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Old 13-02-2019, 22:14   #9
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

I should have said pump
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Old 13-02-2019, 22:34   #10
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

Crack each injector nut one at a time while running. There should be a noticeable difference. If no difference or little difference (should be a noticeable drop in rpm and should be the same for each) check the corresponding injector and get bench tested or replacement. If they are all working, move to timing as mentioned above.
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Old 13-02-2019, 23:35   #11
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

Thank you all so much for the quick suggestions.... I will get on them.

One last thing I need to know 100% for sure: a puff of white is normal for a diesel at startup, a puff of black on acceleration. But continuous white/blueish smoke is absolutely NOT NORMAL no matter what kind of engine, correct? Especially one that is rebuilt properly? There is no break in period where the engine will smoke for, say, 50 hours then the rings will seat properly etc? After 20 hours it should be going away or gone if there at all, right??

I don't want to insist they strip this engine down if otherwise a freshly rebuilt engine is expected to smoke for a while. This just seems like way too much.
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Old 13-02-2019, 23:38   #12
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

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Originally Posted by Sojourner View Post
One last thing I need to know 100% for sure: a puff of white is normal for a diesel at startup, a puff of black on acceleration. But continuous white/blueish smoke is absolutely NOT NORMAL no matter what kind of engine, correct? Especially one that is rebuilt properly? There is no break in period where the engine will smoke for, say, 50 hours then the rings will seat properly etc? After 20 hours it should be going away or gone if there at all, right??
Correct, the engine should not smoke. A guess is that they got the timing wrong.
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Old 14-02-2019, 08:22   #13
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

As noted above it shouldn’t smoke but you should use the proper break in procedure after the rebuild. Usually it’s vary the rpm, do an oil change after 50 hours and re-tighten head bolts (and most others) after 50 hours, but check you manual for exact procedure.
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Old 14-02-2019, 08:59   #14
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

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Originally Posted by Sojourner View Post
My freshly rebuilt Perkins Prima T80 turbo is smoking and spitting diesel, and I need some help please. i know I'm always the one asking stupid questions and being annoying, but the guys are telling me this is either "normal" or "dunno" or "it'll stop eventually" and I'm getting a bit fed up. I've worked on engines before, tho never diesels...it can't be normal to smoke worse than the 50 year old fishing tubs going past my bow every morning... It cost a lot of money I don't have and I'm not leaving without a properly done engine. Please, any diesel mavens out there chime in and let me know where / how to start diagnosing this....

Ever since the rebuild, the engine has been smoking no more and no less than what's in the video. Initially it spat some oil, but probably this was leftover due to a leaky old turbo which was replaced with new. On startup a few days ago (cold start, not run in a few weeks) it spat diesel enough to slick the water a good 5 meters all around the boat (see pic), never before and not again. But it never stopped smoking like this. Where should I start looking???

Here are the facts: 1991 Perkins. Rebuilt and rebored, this was the first rebuild. Everything looked good. Injectors checked out good. New turbo installed. Ran about 20 hours, 14 of which were under 2/3 load in the water, the rest idling at the marina. No change in smoke based on temps outside or in engine, or hours run (six hour under load run, still the same). Engine temps normal (80 C). Engine sounds fine, no vibration or off-beat rhythm. Just the smoke.

Anyone, I would very much appreciate some tips on where to get started.... Thanks so much!
When did you have the high pressure diesel pump overhauled?? Looking at the age of it I would say the seals are gone and timing off. New diesel does not have Sulphur for lubrication in it so wrecks the old seals. Did the injectors meet the specs for opening and closing pressures? Sounds to me like both pump and injectors need checking again. This happened to me a while ago and I had the same symptoms. Take the injectors to the shop first and they can check them while you wait. If they are the problem OK. If not then take the pump in for checks. Are you getting any diesel in the lubricating oil? A bad pump will leak into the crankcase. Check the dipstick. Good luck and let me know what you find! Dave
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Old 14-02-2019, 10:06   #15
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Re: Smoking rebuilt Perkins Diesel help needed!!!

My guess is one or more broken rings causing low compression and unburned fuel to be pushed out the exhaust. Was the rebuild done by a reputable engine builder? If so they should stand behind their work and correct the problem, not try to blow smoke up your ass. This is not normal for a freshly rebuilt engine.
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