Catalina 34

General Activities => Main Message Board => Topic started by: Lance Jones on August 24, 2013, 09:44:33 AM

Title: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 24, 2013, 09:44:33 AM
Ok, read all the bleeding posts. BTW, the link to the bleeding process doesn't work. My issue:
Returning under power from a quick run to pump out.
RPM started dropping and then quit.
Tried restart and it rumbled for a minute and quit again.
When I sailed back to the dock, I replaced the primary and secondary fuel filters (Have done this before).
Secondary (Racor): Opened vent at top of filter. Turned on pump. Let run for a few minutes. Closed vent.
Primary: Opened bleed bolt on top of filter. Ran pump until fuel came out.
Opened injector bleed knob. Ran pump. No fuel emerged from bleeder. Closed valve and tried starting. Nothing happened. Repeated, repeated, repeated.

Any ideas? Thanks in advance.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 24, 2013, 10:29:02 AM
The link to Bleeding 101 is this and it worked for me:

http://c34.org/bbs/index.php/topic,6377.0.html

No fuel should ever come out from the knurled knob.

We have always stressed that when doing two things on a boat, do one, check to make sure it works, then do the second, or else you won't know what may have gone wrong.

It sounds like you've done the right things, but still have air in the fuel system.

I never crack the vent on the Racor, which, BTW, is the primary, the engine mounted filter is the secondary.  Doing so could introduce, not eliminate, air in the system.  I only crack the bolt on the top of the secondary filter, as discussed in Bleeding 101.

Once Ken Heyman, our Bleeding Guru, reported that he'd purchased a Racor replacement filter that had a wonky top, so check that as well as the replacement O rings, which should also have been lightly coated with diesel fuel before tightening.

When in doubt, start over.  Good luck.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Steve Wormsbecher on August 24, 2013, 10:30:30 AM
Hey Lance.

Not sure where you are looking to see fuel come out when you open the injector bleed knob? (I was posting at the exact same time as Stu)

When you run the pump with that injector bleed knob open does your pump dramatically increase it's clicking rate?

Have you let the pump run in that condition for at least a few minutes? then closed it off before attempting a start?  (when my motor sits for a week or so I always seem to have to bleed like that for 20-30 seconds before I get a good start)

It sounds like you know what you're doing and the fact that the engine failed out of the blue (not just after a filter change) the pessimist in me might consider the problem is not air, rather a clogged injector, or completely clogged air filter (although that is not very likely as I'm sure you've already had a look at that).
How bad were your filters, any breaks in the elements?

Completely clogged exhaust may have the same symptoms, just don't know how that would happen.

I also ensure I give the glow plugs another 10-15 second shot before every start attempt; they seem to cool quite a bit.

Lastly, after repeated start attempts, I'm sure you're emptying that water muffler.

I look forward to other's suggestions.

Good luck.

Steve

Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 24, 2013, 10:57:27 AM
Thanks all.
Stu, I was using the link in an older post. Yours worked fine - thanks.
Steve, checked and emptied everything you suggested.
When knob is opened, the pump picks up and when closed, drops back.

Still not starting.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 24, 2013, 11:21:42 AM
How long are you leaving the knurled knob open?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 24, 2013, 11:24:39 AM
A minute or so...
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 24, 2013, 11:54:36 AM
Steve wrote:  Have you let the pump run in that condition for at least a few minutes? then closed it off before attempting a start? 

That's good advice.

I follow the Bleeding 101 links when we do ours.  Run the pump with the knurled knob cracked for at least a half a minute, then close it.  If the pump ticking remains high, open it again and leave it open longer.

It may take some time to purge all the air out, 'specially with the primary vent you opened earlier.

Good luck.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 24, 2013, 12:01:42 PM
Understand.
However, after letting pump run, I close the valve and the pump returns to its normal rate.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on August 24, 2013, 12:41:33 PM
Lance : Sounds as though you are doing the re-bleeding thing right, but the fact that the engine stopped "out of the blue" bothers me.

The slow and fast ticking of the electric fuel pump seem to indicate that fuel should be flowing, but just to make sure try this:  (reroute the returning fuel from the tank into a bucket)
Take a 2 ft piece of 1/4" fuel line and put it in a bucket.  Disconnect the return fuel line from the metal "holder/tube" on the back starboard side of the engine and attach the 2 ft line to that tube coming from the aft injector.
Turn on the ignition so the fuel pump is activated and make sure the knurled knob is open and you should see fuel coming from the hose into the bucket.
This is just a final check to make sure that fuel is really moving thru your system!!

I'm sure that you have removed the screen from the fuel pickup tube in the fuel tank. (see critical updates)

A few thoughts    
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 24, 2013, 12:43:51 PM
Actually Ron, I have not removed that screen. I'll read and follow up. Also, will go get the hose you suggested. Thanks!
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 24, 2013, 04:25:22 PM
New primary had a lot of water in it already.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ted Pounds on August 24, 2013, 05:39:26 PM
Leaky fuel cap???
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 24, 2013, 05:42:50 PM
When I put new fuel in this afternoon, cap was kind of loose and we have had a load of rain.

Any suggestions?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 24, 2013, 07:07:04 PM

Any suggestions?

Uhm, have you read the Critical Upgrades topic? 

Your article about improved access to the back of the galley sink is a great contribution to the C34 Tech wiki.

I'm simply not sure about what kind of suggestions you want us to help you out with other than what we've written so far.

A "tad" of water in your fuel should be evident in the bowl of the PRIMARY (Racor) water/fuel separator.

What am I missing?

Please help us to help you.

Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 25, 2013, 01:01:15 PM
Ok, here is what I've done since yesterday:
Pulled fuel pump screen - clean
Drained Racor - no water this time
Rebled system for 2-3 minutes
No start

Ron, I pulled the aft return line as suggested and had a solid stream of fuel
I am at a loss.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 25, 2013, 02:33:42 PM
Is the stop handle down and is the lever on the engine in the correct place?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 25, 2013, 02:38:20 PM
Stu,
Stop handle is in the correct position
By engine lever you mean in neutral, yes.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 25, 2013, 02:42:11 PM
No, what I meant, sorry should have been clearer, is the engine end of the stop lever, forward port side upper of the engine block.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on August 25, 2013, 03:16:51 PM
Lance : What Stu meant - is the nut on the cutoff lever cable on the starboard front of the engine secure.  Is the lever in the full forward position?

Even though the screen on the fuel pickup was clean I hope you removed it!!

I'm also at a loss.  Guessing, that you got a slug of water into the injection pump and injectors??

 
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 25, 2013, 03:24:31 PM
Thanks Ron,
I figured California had a different port and starboard then the rest of us :D. All is correct. If slug of water taken, recommendations?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on August 25, 2013, 05:18:18 PM
Lance : Here's what I'd try after re-bleeding the system for a couple of minutes:

Back off the nuts (1 or 2 turns" that hold the tubes from the injection pump to the individual injectors.  Wrap some absorbent material around the injector top and turn the engine over for 10-20 seconds.  The fuel & water should squirt out the loosened nut, to clear the injector.
 
Do that to each injector and hopefully all water will then be flushed from the fuel system.  Good Luck
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 25, 2013, 06:17:32 PM
Thanks, Ron, sorry, is is starboard.  Doh!
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Jim Hardesty on August 26, 2013, 05:27:05 AM
Lance,
A shot at long distance trouble shooting.  You did a lot of work close to the engine throtle and engine stop controls.  Check that they are still as they should be.  That's my shot.
Jim
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 26, 2013, 08:06:53 AM
Thanks Jim,
I already did that when Stu suggested that earlier.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ed Shankle on August 26, 2013, 09:30:43 AM
Sounds like water in the fuel initially stopped the engine. I assume when you did Ron's bleed and catch in bucket suggestion there was no more sign of water from the return hose. So, if fuel appears to be moving, and is all fuel, next up would be glow plugs? Have you confirmed that the glow plugs are getting hot?
Good luck,
Ed
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: RV61 on August 26, 2013, 09:46:56 AM
Per Ed's comment. Check you glow plugs I just had a start issue and mechanic pulled glow plugs and they did check out however after he put them back in she has started each and every time and hence we believe there was a loose connection. If that does not work next step is to have injectors checked. My step by step no start when engine will crank plan is as follows and you have done most.
 I only do one step at a time and try engine so thus can determine what the issue was.
1. Check engine stop lever both up top  and at engine.
2. Bleed and check for air.
3. Check fuel flow at injectors. If no fuel or low fuel check and replace fuel separator filter and primary fuel filter . Also check mystery fuel filter screen inside electronic fuel pump. do one filter at a time.

4 Check glow plug connections.
5. Have injectors tested. 

Good luck keep us posted.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 26, 2013, 10:39:56 AM
Thanks Ed & Rick.
H2O still is showing up at primary;but, not much anymore. None in the return. Have not checked glow plugs. Urr...uhhhh... how do I do that?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on August 26, 2013, 11:44:04 AM
Lance : When you engage the glow plugs you should see about a 2 volt drop on your volt meter.  If they were on for 20-30 seconds you should be able to feel the plug itself and feel it warm.  Careful because those plugs get very HOT!!

From the age of your boat I'd just go down to your local Kubota dealer and buy a new set about $12? each.

When you finally get that critter running, I'd make the glow plug modification (see critical updates) if you already haven't done it.

A few thoughts
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 27, 2013, 08:47:02 AM
Ok all,
Thanks for the support so far. However, Kitty's Cat is not yet starting.
I bled the injectors as per Ron would not start.
However, I did check glow plugs when button depressed. They had a 2v drop. Great! When I felt them after holding down for about 60 sec. only the back one was slightly warm. Searched for GP removal but I didn't find anything about removal and replace proceedure. Any directions or links?

Thanks!
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on August 27, 2013, 08:55:54 AM
Lance :  Remove the gang wire from the 3 plugs.  Then remove a glow plug by using a deep well socket just like replacing spark plug. 
Don't know the exact torque setting on replacing, but just make them snug - don't over tighten.  Also make sure the seat is clean before inserting a new plug.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 27, 2013, 09:03:06 AM
Thanks Ron.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 28, 2013, 08:56:28 AM
Ok, new glow plugs on order, material for the solenoid upgrade on hand. My big question about the upgrade is this: looking at the diagram Stu developed and reading what everyone says,
The white wire comes off the (+) side of starter solenoid to the new Glow Plug solenoid. It then runs from there to the aft glow plug. How does the glow plug switch activate the glow plugs since it is cut from the GP circuit?

In addition, I'm also installing a (-) Bus Bar in the engine compartment and also moving dedicated starter battery from up forward to nearer the motor.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ed Shankle on August 28, 2013, 09:46:59 AM
Think you got the wiring mixed Lance. The white wire comes off the glow plug and attaches to the new solenoid. There are 2 new #8 wires, one from the starter to the new solenoid and the other from the new solenoid to the glow plug.
The white wire engages the new solenoid when you turn the ignition switch over and the power flows from the starter, through the solenoid to the glow plug.

Ed
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 28, 2013, 12:17:14 PM
Lance, Ed's right.  Read the NOTES on the "existing" and "new" wiring.  Existing says; "remove from here..."

Anything else, let us know.

PS - I know it's your boat, but you have the option of moving the reserve battery or simply buying larger (+) and (-) wires.  Your boat, your choice, didn't know if you knew you had the choice.  FWIW, we have the OEM #4 wires from the reserve bank which lives in the battery box in front of the galley sink.  My house bank wires from the bank to the 1-2-B switch and on to the starter are also the OEM #4s.  Maine Sail has suggested many times that these are too small, but mine have been working for 26 years!  My alternator output, however, is run directly to the house bank and is #2, and I added a new negative wire also, with the alternator grounded by WIRE to the engine ground (not case grounded to the engine like the OEM).
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on August 28, 2013, 02:27:50 PM
I understand removing the wire from glow plug. On Kitty's Cat, the original WHITE wire runs from starter solenoid to the glow plug button in the cockpit. It then returns from the glow plug button as a brown wire to the aft glow plug.

So, correct me if I'm wrong, by moving WHITE wire to NEW solenoid (and not to the GP button) you remove glow plug button from the circuit. So, do the GPs stay on the entire time until the key is turned off?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on August 28, 2013, 03:44:09 PM
Lance : You need to understand what the glow plug mod is doing.
 
Right now the voltage/amperage is going from the starter solenoid stud common + connection to the glow plug switch on the engine instrument panel and then finally thru the small wiring back to the glow plugs.  Not much juice!!

The mod takes a much larger wire #8 or #6 from the +hot terminal (starter solenoid stud) and goes direct to the glow plugs (aft plug).  In between there is a new solenoid (SWITCH) to control the ON/OFF of that wire.  The new solenoid is turned ON/OFF by the wire from that glow plug switch on the engine instrument panel.  That wire from the glow plug switch is connected to the "instantaneous"  pole of the new glow plug solenoid (NOT the "continuous" pole).  The feet of the new glow plug solenoid are the ground (-) connection, so the solenoid need to be mounted on the grounded engine or a ground wire.

I wrote this up back in 1996/97? Mainsheet tech notes.  Clear as mud??
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 28, 2013, 04:17:06 PM
Ron's right.  However, like a but ( :shock:), the wiring in my sketch uses a ground wire to the engine simply because it is mounted not on the engine but on the strip of wood above it.  I don't recall if that ground wire is shown on my sketch, but there is one in real life on my boat.

Good luck, please ask if you have any more questions.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ken Juul on August 28, 2013, 04:58:29 PM
Each boat is a bit different.  If on your boat the power to the glow plug switch is the white wire, that should stay in place.   The brown wire from the switch would go to the momentary post on the selenoid.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on August 28, 2013, 06:03:21 PM
Guys : If you already haven't figured out why Catalina didn't give you a wiring diagram of the MKI  engine instrument panel - its very simple!!  They wired boats even in the same production year with different colored wires!!
 
Those of us that have done the wiring harness upgrade early on (1992) found/substantiated that Catalina used every different color wire.  The only color that you can depend on Catalina factory using for sure is BLACK for the ground wire.  

Otherwise as I have advised in the wiring harness upgrade at the old connectors - "cut a wire and reconnect to its mate.  Do NOT clip all the wires at once and then try to re-mate them"!!!

On the Glow plug upgrade Forget about sketches/colors, take the wire from the existing last (aft) glow plug and connect it to the interment pole on the new solenoid (marked "I") and make sure the foot of the new solenoid is grounded.  

When a few of us (Catalina owners) can up with this fix, all we did was copy what had been done to the newer C34/36s that had the M35 engine installed and modified that installation.
We had no internet or no sketches, just knew that what we had was pretty bad so we came up with the changes necessary to fix the problem!  The others followed in 1994/5 !!

A few thoughts
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on August 28, 2013, 06:36:52 PM
Please don't forget about sketches.  Yup, forget about colors, Ron's right.  I drew the sketch to remind me what I had done on MY boat, for future reference, and posted it so somebody might be assisted in doing theirs.  It simply shows how it works and how it's wired.  There aren't even any colors on it!  All it says is "existing" or "new," including the new ground wire.  How hard can that be?  And in addition to Ron, Captain Al Watson wrote a whole FAQ/wiki article on it.

Lance, take a deep breath, and follow the electrons.  As Ron explained, the solenoid is simply a "remote" switch from the engine panel.  That's all it does.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on August 29, 2013, 05:51:12 PM
Lance : I'd replace the old glow plugs and get the engine running first, before I change the glow plug wiring.

My thoughts
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 02, 2013, 06:36:44 PM
I am awaiting the parts that are due to arrive tomorrow. Will follow Ron's suggestion before doing the upgrade. However, I have noticed that when my bilge pump comes on, I have a slick behind the boat. What is the best way to clean up the diesel that has spilled somewhere under the filters and is making its way into the bilge?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on September 02, 2013, 07:55:34 PM
Simple Green has a good rep for cleaning.  www.pureayre.com for smells.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Jim Hardesty on September 03, 2013, 08:14:08 AM
Some smells trigger my asthma so I watch what I use.  I use a scent free liquid fabric softener about one cap-full in a half gallon of water.  Pour it where the leak was let it work to the bilge and set for a while.  Then rinse.  For the small spills I've had that worked.
Jim
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 03, 2013, 10:47:19 AM
I'd heard that about simple green and fabric softener. Thanks for the ideas.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 03, 2013, 06:01:01 PM
Lance : The best bilge cleaner I found is the low sudsing dish WASHER detergent.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 03, 2013, 06:03:25 PM
Interesting. I hadn't heard that one!
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 07, 2013, 10:48:07 AM
Ok, I replaced the Glow plugs - no joy. They do get warm even after adding in the solenoid upgrade.
Re-bled the system from primary, secondary, bleed valves, injectors, fuel return. All are "flowing."
Drained primary filter to check for water. A minor amount.
Bought a new secondary and replaced it. On inspection, it had crud and water in it.
Re-bled system - again. No joy.
Getting real frustrated.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on September 07, 2013, 11:15:16 AM
Lance, I forget if earlier in this long thread anyone had suggested that you get a jerry jug of fresh clean fuel and run the inlet to your primary filter to this jug.  This would eliminate the most likely water-sogged fuel in your tank from the equation.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 07, 2013, 11:18:13 AM
No I hadn't heard that idea. I'm picking up a friends fuel polisher either today or tomorrow. Should I do that before polishing or after?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on September 07, 2013, 11:22:56 AM
All depends on how soon you want to try to get your engine started.  :D

I'm of the belief that fuel polishing is like voodoo, but that's me.  However, if you have a lot of water in your fuel tank, as you mentioned earlier with your fuel cap and the rains you had, if it was my boat I'd buy two jerry jugs:  one to use as I suggested, and then use both of them to remove the water soaked fuel you have and start all over.  Don't know how much fuel you have in your tank.

Good luck.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 07, 2013, 11:24:46 AM
I have 1/2 tank. Why do you consider it voodoo?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on September 07, 2013, 11:31:35 AM
Because it returns what it takes out with "some" filtering.  Time consuming and expensive to have someone else do it.  You have a fuel pump and a primary filter.  Why do you need someone else to do this for you?  Based on discussions on this and many other sailing forms, the idea is to have clean treated fuel, avoid getting water into the tank, and if necessary clean the tank which is where the "critters" hang out if you have any.

Before you spend oodles of $$ for polishing, see if you can, or get them to take samples from the bottom of the tank to see if you have copious amounts of water.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 07, 2013, 11:34:27 AM
Interesting. It is a friends so it's free except for the liquid adult payment I'll give when returning it. Your other idea, primary and fuel pump. How would I do that?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on September 07, 2013, 11:44:00 AM
Disconnect the fuel line from your tank to your Racor.  Clamp it and close the shutoff valve, too. Get a length of fuel hose that goes from the inlet of the PRIMARY Racor fuel filter under your head sink to a jerry jug which you can place on the head sole.  Assuming you've corrected the plumbing so your electric pump is after your Racor - if not, do it while you're there or connect the jerry jug to the inlet of the the pump.

All you're doing is "pretending" that the jerry jug is your fuel tank.  Of course, use fresh fuel in the jerry jug, do not use the stuff from your tank.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 07, 2013, 12:31:35 PM
Guys : My definition of "fuel polishing" is to run the fuel thru a filter (series of filters even better) and remove both the growth and any water!!

Lance : I'm sure that your friends fuel polisher fits my definition above.  

You can do the same with what you've already got on your boat.
Take the output from your electric fuel pump (fuel going from tank to[thru] Racor to electric fuel pump) and connect that outlet from the electric fuel pump thru a long fuel line to the fuel return line (aft of the aft injector).  

Hank Recla and Bill Nuttall both wrote up Mainsheet tech note articles on how to build your own installed fuel polisher.  It's what I mentioned above, but with a valve that either polishes the fuel and just cycles it back to the tank or sends the fuel to the injection pump.  Simple as that.

A few thoughts

 
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 07, 2013, 12:36:29 PM
Lance : As a side thought, have you checked your plastic fuel cap to make sure that it isn't cracked.
Just wondering where or how you got all that water in your fuel tank?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 07, 2013, 12:45:08 PM
Thanks Stu and Ron. I did check the cap after reading some posts here. It's fine but, was not tight. I have my fuel pump AFTER my Racor.
 
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 07, 2013, 12:59:44 PM
Lance : Had a brain laps, as the fuel goes thru the Racor and then to the electric fuel pump. 

Thanks for catching that. 

With all of the fuel problems that you've had, you might consider removing your fuel tank and cleaning it.  You can do it like I did or find some one to clean it for you. 
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ed Shankle on September 09, 2013, 10:45:29 AM
"Ok, I replaced the Glow plugs - no joy. They do get warm even after adding in the solenoid upgrade"

Hey Lance,
At  the risk of nit picking your comment above, the aft glow plug should get hot to the touch. not just warm. Could the problem still be charging the glow plug?

Ed
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 09, 2013, 10:50:37 AM
I like nits! Not sure what you mean by charging glow plugs.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ed Shankle on September 09, 2013, 11:03:13 AM
Sorry, I should have said "energize". What I meant was when you turn the start key over, which starts the fuel pump and allows the glow plugs to heat up. If you've done the glow plug solenoid mod and hold the key over for 20 seconds, the glow plug should be hot! If not, I wouldn't eliminate that as the problem yet.

Ed
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 09, 2013, 11:09:42 AM
The mid (Cyl 2) is hot. 1 & 3 are warm (New too)
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on September 09, 2013, 12:56:28 PM
Have you replaced the wiring?  At least the wires between the glow plugs.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 09, 2013, 02:40:10 PM
Lance :hat you are saying " 1 & 3" (fwd and aft) get warm but the one in the middle gets HOT - make no sense!!
Because the new #6 or #8 gage wire upgrade connects to the aft #3 glow plug.  They all should get HOT in 10-15 seconds!!

As I recall the M25XP wiring the 3 glow plug wires are "gang wired 1-2-3" with your new solenoid upgrade going to the aft #3 glow plug. You may have some crud or a bad connection on the #1 & #3 glow plugs. 

That gang wire is a Kubota part if you want a new gang wire harness!!

Recheck your wire connections.  A few thoughts
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 09, 2013, 03:37:27 PM
Lance : Beside checking your wire connections, it should was unsaid that you need to use some "anti seize" on the glow plug threads (just like you would on the threads of a glow plug).

Not sure to the torque specs for the glow plugs, but snug is better than a "crank down".

An few after thoughts. 
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: prh77 on September 11, 2013, 05:57:15 AM
First check and clean the glow plug harness. A quick and dirty check is to jump from the big stud on the solenoid to the glow plugs with a decent sized wire. Should be nice and hot in 10-20 seconds. Just be careful. Did this for a friend on a C 36 and an engine that would not start for 3 weeks zoomed to life. He then did the solenoid mod.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 11, 2013, 07:22:46 AM
I've already done the solenoid upgrade. Can I make my own gang wire harness?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 11, 2013, 12:47:26 PM
Lance : Sure you can make your own gang wire harness.  You can make it out of #6 or #8 wire.  I'd both crimp and solder.

Or you can do like Westerbeke has done on the newer "glow plug engines" -- they took a thin 1/16" thick harrow strip 1/4" wide piece of copper and drilled 3 holes to match the glow plug connections (approx. sizes).  In between the plugs exposed strip they used heat shrink as the insulation. 

A few thoughts
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 11, 2013, 06:35:43 PM
It started! :clap :party :clap :party :clap
Not sure what it was that I did. Maybe a combination of all the above posts.
Fuel polishing was a success. No gunk or water in Primary after running motor for about 15 minutes.
Glow plug upgrade is in; but, still uncertain if they were "fouled" out due to fuel build up in cylinders (If that is possible) Will find out in the morning.
Checked and cleaned all battery, 1-2-B, and starter terminals on the cables.
Added a negative bus bar in engine compartment.
Increased guage of wire from alt output to starter.
Moved dedicated starter battery to aft of engine.
One thing I found was a battery that would not hold a charge. The minute I stressed it, it lost about 25% of its charge....?

To do:
Building fuel polishing system.
Continuation of wire inspection and upgrade where possible/neccessary.
CLEAN UP A HUGE MESS!!!!!!!!!!!

Thanks all.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on September 12, 2013, 08:10:34 AM
Congratulations!!!  :clap :clap :clap

You can be our new poster boy.  :abd:

You know, for like when we suggest you do one thing at a time so you know what the issue is that you fixed.   :thumb:

Glad it's running, too bad you don't know why.  :D
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 12, 2013, 08:21:33 AM
Understand the implication  :thumb:. However, in reality, I did only do 1 thing at a time. Clogged filters. Changed and bled. Didn't work. Bled complete system. Didn't work. Only 1 glow plug warm. Changed glow plugs. Didn't work. Upgraded GP switch. Didn't work. Polished fuel. So far had insured it had fuel, air and warm GPs. Didn't work. Inspected and repaired/replaced terminal ends of batteries and cleaned. Didn't work. Found dead battery. Used a jump and it worked.

If something you do doesn't work, and it should've, you don't repeat, repeat.....you keep tracing the issue until you find the cause or it works.

I thought I used a good process with input from the C-34 crew. Guess I'm not Commodore material anymore..... :D
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Stu Jackson on September 12, 2013, 08:28:57 AM
Lance, that's great news and I know everyone who chimed in here is always glad to help.

Only thing about these boards is that we can only read what you write, maybe not what you may have really meant.   :D :D :D

Glad you did it methodically.  If I understand your latest, then the real underlying issue was a rotten battery.  Is that right?

Congratulations again, you can't be our Poster Boy, but you sure are a great Commodore.   :clap

Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 12, 2013, 08:33:19 AM
I actually think it was a combination of events that all contributed to the issue. One great result is I am more willing to work on and intimately more familiar with the engine system.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 12, 2013, 08:45:13 AM
Lance : WOW!!  Hallelujah  :clap  I'm sure that it was some of the last things that you did with the glow plugs that did the trick!  

Of course, polishing the fuel when you found water and crud in it didn't hurt!!  When you get things settled down, I'd recommend you pull the tank and get it cleaned.  
I know that Mainsail is not a fan of the Starbright Enzyme fuel additive, but I am.  I understand that it got a good write-up in Practical Sailor.  Unlike others I use the enzyme tank cleaner every fall at layup.

Doing one thing at a time means ONE filter at a time, bleed and start engine and run for10-15 minutes.  Then do the other filter.  BTW, if you are using a 2 micron in the Racor the fuel then goes to a 15 micron filter on the engine.  I don't change that engine fuel filter for 5 years/seasons, but the Racor gets changed every spring.

Glad you had the persistence to stay with the problem and get it solved.  :thumb:

Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 12, 2013, 08:49:21 AM
Ron, I did, initially replace just the primary and bled. When that didn't work, I then pulled secondary and it too was gunked.

Thanks to all for all the input!
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 12, 2013, 12:29:18 PM
Lance : I'm afraid that you were hit with the "Ron" syndrome - multiple problems at the same time!!  That always seems to happen to me, which takes a lot more time to figure out.

It sounded like you had a big time fuel problem and the glow plugs also were pooping out.  The healthy dose of water in the fuel line didn't help maters either.

Anyway you stuck with it and solved the problems and the engine is now running.   :thumb: 
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 12, 2013, 09:06:27 PM
Even more to update. During the engine problem issue I was asking Stu what my 1-2-B should be set up for the optimal configuration..... He asked how mine was set up?  That started me thinking. I really didn't KNOW. I THOUGHT I knew; but, I didn't know for certain. So today, I decided to find out.

What I found scared the scatatoria out of me! All the red wires were connected to red terminals and black were connected to black. Good so far. I next started tracing the wiring set up. That's when I got sceeeered. I eventually pulled over 60 feet of unneeded wire from my system! I had everything from #4 to #18 wire. Some led of to no where. Others headed off and then returned to be connected back on to the same terminal. No wonder the starter turned over more slowly than other 34s in Fleet 13.

Once all the crap was removed, I basically started over in the battery compartment. When I finished, I had the set up in the battery compartment set up correctly. My on/off Perko even works now. I figured I'd try starting it cold. Held Glow plug button in for a 20 count. I can't really say it turned over. One second it wasn't running and the next second, she was purring like a kitten!!!!

Next step tomorrow is to start work in the hanging locker. That's where the charger is set up. I want to make sure the entire system is in order!

Thanks again for all of your help. :thumb:

I approve this message.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Jeff Tancock on September 13, 2013, 07:30:58 AM
Wow....great job! I'm very impressed.
Maybe you want to come by and do the same on my boat. I'm scared of getting into that rat's nest and making things worse.
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Ron Hill on September 13, 2013, 05:45:16 PM
Guys : Maybe "Cat" boats are more prone to problems than other C34s?!?   :devil
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 15, 2013, 06:48:28 PM
Here is the result of 2 days of rewiring:
Each of the battery cables was roughly 2-4 feet long. Now they are 10 inches from battery to battery. The cable from the on off switch was 3 feet long. Now it is 1 foot long. Batteries are arranged, as before in parallel. However, now the (-) side runs to a (-) bus bar and the (+) run to a (+) bus bar. Solar regulators for each battery are also mounted inside the battery box. Each battery has a 40 watt panel attached to it. My question is if it would be better to run to the bus bar instead of each individual battery?
Title: Re: Fuel issue
Post by: Lance Jones on September 22, 2013, 03:26:01 PM
I want to thank everyone for your help, patience and insight! Not only does she start, she starts better than I have ever had her start. While you kept me from making many mistakes, in several instances, you "forced" me to research what I was trying to do or what I was saying.

Here are the things that I did while trying to get her started and then after starting.
1) Glow plug upgrade
2) Shortened battery cable length and increased their gauge to 0/1
3) Installed dedicated starter battery
4) Oil breather to air intake
5) Found that the PO did NOT install harness upgrade as said. :x
6) Several MINOR electrical problems (Ghosts) disappeared
7) Finally, found Jimmy Hoffa!