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  #1  
Old 04-26-2006
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Universal diesel engine problem

Good Afternoon - I own a 1986 Bristol 35.5, with a Universal 3cyl, 24HP diesel with 3,500 hours on it. I bought the boat used six years ago, and although the engine starts easily, even in winter, I have never been able to go above 2100 RPM (max RPM according to the manual is 2800 RPM), even with the throttle totally opened up. I have checked the throttle linkage, and the speed control lever and they are both OK, so the problem is elsewhere. I might add that the top speed I get is 2100 RPM, for both under power, or in neutral at the slip.

I also have a second problem that is unrelated to the above. I purchased new gel batteries last summer, that I left on board this past winter. The batteries were both at 13.0 V in late February. A month ago I turned the battery charger on just to make sure the batteries were topped up. The charger registered 5 amps for a week, and I then inadvertantly discovered that the alternator was hot to the touch. I immediately disconnected the batteries from the system, and within a few minutes, the alternator was noticeably cooler. The batteries registered 12.3 V, which, for gel batteries means they are between 0-25% charged (ie, severely discharged). My question: what might be going on here, and what can I do to rectify the problem?

Any help or ideas on either problem would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 06-10-2012
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Re: Universal diesel engine problem

Hi, I have the identical problem. How did you resolve it? You can email me at calypso38@gmail.com

Barry
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Old 06-10-2012
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Re: Universal diesel engine problem

Barry, the guy posted one time 6 years ago. Don't think we will be hearing from him.
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Old 06-10-2012
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Re: Universal diesel engine problem

Thanks Chuck. This engine (45 hp) is new to me and replaces a much loved 1954 Hercules flat head gas engine of the same size. I had the compression tested when I bought it. Its so good, and the engine starts so easily that I can`t understand why he sold it in the first place. There`s no smoking or lugging whatsoever.

I just installed it and everything is new-exhaust, filters, tank, fuel lines. The prop is the recommended 15* inch, pitch 12. In neutral, the engine will do about 2400 rpm but struggles audibly after 1500. It sounds like its gasping or starving for air or fuel.

It hits 2200 at hull speed of 7.2 kts. but the same unhappy sound persists.

Any suggestions?

Barry

Last edited by BarryT; 06-10-2012 at 10:43 PM.
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Old 06-10-2012
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Re: Universal diesel engine problem

Quote:
Originally Posted by BarryT View Post
........I just installed it and everything is new-exhaust, filters, tank, fuel lines. The prop is the recommended 15* inch, pitch 12. In neutral, the engine will do about 2400 rpm but struggles audibly after 1500. It sounds like its gasping or starving for air or fuel......
As a new install, it could be that you ARE starving for fuel, or more likely sucking air into your system somewhere along the way. One way to try to eliminate this possibility would be to set up a temporary gravity feed tank of clean fuel with a real short feed line.. If the engine runs more normally that way, then you'll know there's an issue with the regular fuel delivery system.

If it's a full suction system (ie no electric fuel pump) the thing is you'll likely never see a 'leak' as the system is never under pressure.. but once running the leak lets air in. Every fitting in the system is a suspect.. including the sneakiest of all - a perforated pickup tube inside the tank.
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Old 06-10-2012
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Re: Universal diesel engine problem

That makes sense. I do have an electric fuel pump that is rated at about 7psi. It worked perfectly for my Hercules which when pushed would consume gas at a rate that the balance of power in the middle east was threatened. It is more than sufficient to do the supply.


I will check for air leaks in the line/ filters/ pump connections.
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Old 06-11-2012
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Re: Universal diesel engine problem

Here's a bunch of stuff to look for:

CRITICAL UPGRADES - DO THESE OR ELSE!!!
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