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Old 12-17-2012
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

I completed my first major project on my new boat, whew! And since it was a low buck project I thought I would publish.☺ This is not ground breaking or earth shattering stuff but I feel great about it. The boat came with the primary fuel filter (500MA) placed where it literally could not be serviced. The T-bolt was too close to the ceiling of the engine room so it could not be removed without UNSCREWING a panel from the aft berth storage cabinet. The bowl of the filter was 1.5 inches straight above the exhaust hose and draining would turn into a huge mess every time. As I do not carry a crew of Lilliputians that could pull this off I needed to move it. The dealer offered to move it over 5 inches and lower it but this would only be a slight improvement as the access doors to get in this space are tiny and would require a longer reach to get at it. The end solution was to put it on the outside engine room bulkhead in my storage/shop area.

I had to extend the both fuel lines about 18 inches so I bought (two) two barb fittings, eight hose clamps, wall grommets, hose clips, and a yard of A1 fuel line. Then there was the bolt that I dropped into never never land that had to be replaced (need to find that someday). Also the 500MA required a 23mm wrench that I didn’t have. Additionally, I decided to change to 10 micron filter (was 30) because it is much easier to replace now. So, (only) three trips to the local hardware/marine store. I also ordered a quick drain valve fitting, from KTI Systems, which replaces the drain bolt on the Racor, not installed yet. All in all, spent $50 on a setup that is 10x safer.

The end goal is that my wife or I will be able to drain the bowl and change the filter in less than 30 seconds, without fuel in the bilge or a single bruised knuckle. I will also be able to easily drain out an ounce or so prior to every use to remove any standing gunk in the bowl. I was able to validate the low-pressure fuel line bleeding process, easy, worked perfectly.

Future fuel system upgrades
- Vacuum gauge with alarm
- New fuel tank selector manifold, the current one is brain dead and does not allow you to select which tank receives the fuel return. I will at that point make all the lines continuous without the dual barb connector.
- Maybe a dual filter system, thinking about that, not sure that it is needed now.

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UPDATE!
I just received a note from my dealer, Beneteau is going to give me a check for $65 for parts/effort to move the filter while my boat is under warranty! It makes sense, but hugely unexpected!
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Attached pictures are the before and after.



Attached Images
File Type: jpg Old Position.jpg (76.0 KB, 41 views)
File Type: jpg after.jpg (39.8 KB, 47 views)

Last edited by kellysails; 12-17-2012 at 03:35 PM. Reason: Update
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