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Old 19-04-2015, 14:42   #31
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Re: How big of a deal is hydrolock?

I filled a Perkins 4-108 almost full during a hard downwind run coming from Hawaii to Calif. The exhaust system had been replaced and the exhaust rise at the transom was not as high as was originally designed for the Peterson 44. Went to charge the batteries in the morning, and just got a clunk. The dip stick showed way over full, so I knew I was screwed. I had insisted that the owner supply a case of oil and several filters for the delivery, so I drained the oil and added fresh oil (plus filter) pulled the injectors and did a real stupid stunt. I went up to the cockpit and hit the starter with the injectors out. It turned over fine for about a minute, so I knew the water was out of the cylinders. I went back down to the engine room and was greeted by a horrible mess. I had sprayed salt water and diesel all over the side of the engine room. If you ever spin an engine without the injectors (or glow plugs) , put a sacrificial towel, rags or something to keep from spending hours cleaning your mess. Learn from my stupidity. The engine took a lot of cranking to start banging on one cylinder, then two, then smoothed right out and ran perfect for the rest of the trip. Did another oil change when we reaches shore, and dont think that the engine sustained any damage. Contrary to many opinions here, I feel that you are less likely to get major damage to an engine if a cylinder is almost full as opposed to a slightly filled cylinder, because the motor will come up against the hydrolock before the rotation forces have built up much speed. Worst case would probably be an engine with a big heavy flywheel that fired on one cylinder before the one with the water came up an locked up. That would be expensive. Best of luck. _____Grant.
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Old 19-04-2015, 16:14   #32
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Re: How big of a deal is hydrolock?

Thanks to all who replied, and the OP for bringing the topic. This should be "required reading" for all new sailing vessel owners!
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Old 19-04-2015, 21:17   #33
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Re: How big of a deal is hydrolock?

These stories are great! Good to know I'm not the only one.
Pretty sure it was water in the cylinders. It is a diesel (a small one, the 5411) and not an issue with anything else. But, when I get the new water pump in we'll see! It's sort of ironic that by clearing the water passages (my first problem) I set myself up for the second! If only they'd stayed clogged!


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