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post #1 of 6 Old 05-07-2007 Thread Starter
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C270 shut down.

I've got a vessel with a 60hp Isuzu QD C270 in it. While sailing around today, some of the times she was under auxiliary power I noticed that she would slowly reduce speed, and I would have to give it more fuel - although so far as I know my throttle has always held true. While tearing down and getting ready to come back into my slip, we were rolling around in gear at an idle. Suddenly, she stopped running. Just out of the blue, as if someone had pulled the kill switch. Only, after that, she wont turn over. And I was terribly close to the marina across the lake from me. Thank god my neighbor was around and managed to tow me back into my slip before I drifted into the marina or had to deploy my anchor (which, coincidentally, has a hydraulic windlass powered by - you guessed it - the motor).

After sitting in the slip for a while, praying I had just managed to run her battery banks dry and that I had put my alternator to work enough to kill the motor, I decided to try and start her up since the voltage meter seemed healthy. Except now, she doesn't turn over. Not in the least, even marked the belt wheel on my water pump it's hasn't moved but about 3° in several attempts to turn her over.

Tried to grab a hold of it with a pipe wrench and turn it, but it wont budge. She had about 4.25 quarts of oil in it, which is about .25 more than it needs. She was running at about 175°F, had about 55 PSI of oil pressure when I had checked about 10 minutes before that. I'm quite doubtful that it would seize under those conditions, but what could it be? Has anyone had anything like this happen to one of these motors?
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post #2 of 6 Old 05-07-2007
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I am guessing that this is a diesel, not a gasoline powered engine. In that case, the batteries being dead have little to do with the engine not running... since most marine diesels are fairly simple and do not rely electronics or electricity to remain running.

If she didn't overheat, the two most common problems with diesels running poorly or dying out are fuel problems and air problems.

However, if you've tried to start her repeatedly, you may have hydrolocked the engine, if you've got a water lift muffler on it. That may be why the engine hasn't moved... one that is hydro-locked can't Hydro-locking occurs when you crank an engine with a water-lift muffler for too long a period of time and the water from the muffler backups and flows into the engine via the exhaust valves. This is very bad for the engine.

BTW, the windlass being hydraulic has little effect on you being able to drop your anchor... so it doesn't really matter that it is powered by the motor until you go to retreive it.

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post #3 of 6 Old 05-07-2007
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Did you check the gearbox (aka transmission)? If the crankshaft doesn't turn the gearbox may have seized; you can narrow it down further by checking if the prop shaft spins by hand when in neutral. If the prop is fouled the shaft will also fail to spin, but in that case the engine should still start when in neutral. I ask because I had a gearbox failure just last week where a gear seized such that when in neutral the shaft spun in reverse, and when in forward the engine locked up as you describe (disclaimer: this is my sole experience debugging diesels). New gearbox on its way...

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post #4 of 6 Old 05-07-2007 Thread Starter
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Yeah she's a Diesel. Well that was kind of my point, if I can't get it to start I don't want to deploy an anchor - especially when I'm 1) 300 yards from my slip and 2) In a no-anchor area. My neighbor fetched me so it worked out, if I would have gotten too close to the marina, I would have just deployed my anchor anyway.

So I didn't get a chance to try and start it repeatedly after it died. From the first time I tried, she didn't turn over. I don't think that'd get her to back up any water.

This morning I got the motor to turn over 1/2 turn. So I'm guessing, hoping and praying that it would be a combination of fuel/air problems causing her to die - and maybe this old 750 cold crank amp starter battery is dead. As for the gearbox suggestion, I grabbed a hold of my axle and spun it - she spins freely when in neutral.

I'll try draining my fuel filters, and buying a new higher powered starter battery. Even if this doesn't solve my problems she could probably use both. And at least I got the motor to turn over. :-)
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Actually, sounds like you've got a few problems going on.

First, is a dead or weak starting battery, which has little or nothing to do with the problems that you run into when the engine is running.

Second, is an air or fuel system problem that causes the engine to die after running a short period of time. I'm leaning towards it being something in the fuel system.

Replace the fuel filters and then run it from a portable tank, and if that seems to clear up the problem, the culprit is the fuel tank or hoses. Might be a good idea to try and run the system from a portable fuel tank. Don't forget to add the lines for the fuel return to the portable tank, so you don't accidentally over fill the main tank.

If it doesn't clear up the problem, it could still be in the fuel tank and hoses, but you've also got an air problem.

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his motor doesn't turn over.
thats either starter circuit, battery circuit, or mechanical.
the "odd" thing is it quit b4 it got to the dock. That doesn't sound like battery. Doesn't sound like starter either.

"I noticed that she would slowly reduce speed, and I would have to give it more fuel"


hmmm, maybe.
Why it doesn't turn over is the first issue. Check your voltage on your battery, then try to check between the battery and the hot side of the starter solenoid. Should be real close to 12.6. if not, charge or replace battery or clean conections/find cause.

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