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rickety
rickety

Posted: Sun May 15, 2011 8:30am

Post Subject: Engine - multiple symptoms one cause ?

Hi, I have a 18hp twin cylinder Lister engine on a 40' narrowboat. Yesterday whilst crusing noticed some 'steam type' vapour coming from engine area. Then saw bilge chucking out horrible rusty brown fluid speckled with white bits. Carried on slowly for 10 mins to mooring. Lifted engine cover to discover traces of diesel everywhere. Then looked in water expansion tank to find black looking water. Engine was serviced in March and has been running very well. I am worried. Any help re further exploration / diagnosis much appreciated. Thanks Rick

Tony-B
Tony-B

Posted: Mon May 16, 2011 9:27am

Post Subject: Engine - multiple symptoms one cause ?

Dear Rick - for future reference please try to give me the engine model - Listers have been made from at least the 1920s so your engine could be anything. I really need to know what the white vapour smelt of because we have three possibilities. The two most likely are steam or fumes from vaporised diesel. I am not going to worry about the third at present. As you say you see black looking water in the expansion tank (whatever the expansion tank may be in your particular case) suggests the vapour was not steam from an overheating engine otherwise I would have expected you to comment at a low or non-vissible water level. At present I can not attribute the "black" to anything apart from little light and blue antifreeze OR products or corrosion caused by a lack of antifreeze. The only other likely cause of steam is if the bilge filled so much it overflowed the engine drip tray allowing the engine pulley and flywheel to throw water and the much from the drip tray all over the engine. Some of this would steam on the exhaust and it may well leave an oily film over the engine. Without being able to feel and smell the diesel that is everywhere I can not rule out misidentification. If this is the case I would suggest that you check the stern gland for leaks and if it is not leaking see how long the bilge takes to fill up again. There just might be a slight hull leak. MY suspicion is that a diesel pipe has worked loose or broken so it is spraying fuel all over the engine but if this is the case the white vapour would have smelt like diesel. I can not help any more without seeing the boat. I will be in the Braunston area on Wednesday so if it is located around there email me so I can look at it. Tony@TB-Training.co.uk Tony Brooks

rickety
rickety

Posted: Wed May 18, 2011 11:05pm

Post Subject: Engine - multiple symptoms one cause ?

Many thanks. Checked today and found broken fuel pipe. Point noted re engine model but I've been scouring the engine for information and can find nothing . There is a number stamped on the gearbox but not much elser. Might a photo help in future? Rick

Tony-B
Tony-B

Posted: Thu May 19, 2011 6:47am

Post Subject: Engine - multiple symptoms one cause ?

A photo might help but not on the forum because it will be too small to see properly. If you want to send a photo then send it to Tony@TB-Training.co.uk, preferably before Monday. Tony Brooks

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