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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 07-05-2009
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Need confidence in my diesel

Have a Sabre 34 with a Westerbeke 27. Over the winter, had the fuel tank cleaned and fuel polished (obviously was having problems last fall). Went out this weekend and engine kept dying underway. Changed Racor filter and it looked pretty bad and got a bit of sediment off the bottom drain of the filter bowl. Bled engine and it would start but kept quitting within minutes. Kept changing filters and the filters didn't look too bad. Engine kept quitting. Finally today, I realized that I hadn't changed the O-ring on the t-handle. Perhaps it was pinched and drawing air into the system while running leading to the shutdowns? Engine runs better in idle than when trying to take a load. Anyway, changed the o-ring this afternoon and ran the boat in the slip at 1500 rpm with transmission in forward and at about 1350 rpm in reverse for about 20 minutes. Engine ran fine. Could the engine have been drawing air in through the filter? Filters still look very clean, so I'm starting to think it is not a problem with the fuel.

Advice welcome, confirmation if I am on the right track eagerly sought!

Thanks.
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Old 07-05-2009
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just the one filter? usually secondary filter on motor
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Old 07-05-2009
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The O rings will do that. Air coming in anywhere is not a nice thing

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  #4  
Old 07-05-2009
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Rikhall - I feel your pain, but these are reliable systems and Sabre did a great job. Since you had the tank cleaned, I also don't think that you have a problem with the fuel. However, I'll strongly recommend that you pull the fuel pickup from inside the tank and remove the screen that Sabre installed there. I've had a problem with the screen clogging on both my Sabres. I removed the screen on both and have had no problems since. The thread follows (I think that my post is something like #23 on page 3).

Primary fuel filter

I think that you solved the problem with the o ring. Any air in the system will shut it down. I've never had a problem with pinching, but it's possible. You should have seen the pinch when removing the old o ring. If the Raycor isn't the problem, then check the primary and secondary filters for clogging or air intrusion (motion300 - Sabres have 3 fuel filters - a Raycor, a lift filter and a secondary filter). I replace all three filters, magnet, and gaskets at the same time which is yearly. I always keep at least one spare of each on board.

You sound like you have a classic fuel starvation problem. One item of concern is that if the tank was properly cleaned, then the Raycor should have been spotless. Is it still clean? I usually drain the Raycor and flush it before installing a new filter. I usually use Raycor 10 micron filters (blue), and stay away from 2 micron filters (brown) although I've used them with no prtoblem.

Good luck and PM me if you have any other questions.
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Last edited by Sabreman; 07-06-2009 at 01:20 PM. Reason: clarity, spelling
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Old 07-06-2009
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I have a perkins that acted the same. The last thing I did was change all the fuel lines and hose clamps. It seems to have solved the problem. There might be a hairline crack in the hose. I don't know about a Westerbeke, but Perkins are not very forgiveing and make bleeding the engine a pain in the @$%!
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Old 07-06-2009
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Orings, crush washers...I've become paranoid about diesel fuel systems and try to treat them all as biohazards. You know, if you TOUCH it? Throw it out and replace it. If you didn't touch it but just LOOKED at it? Throw it out and replace it anyway. Damned little three cent parts are all conspiring to shut your engine down, all the time. (G)
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Old 07-06-2009
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Thanks to all for the advice. Will take Sabreman's recommendation and replace all 3 filters this coming weekend. Feeling better now.
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Old 07-06-2009
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I just reread my post. Sorry for the misspellings. Wow. I clarified my post by adding a note to drain and flush the Raycor before installing a new filter. I drain the Raycor into a coffee can and let the sediment settle. I then pour some of the clean fuel back into Raycor to flush any sediment in the housing, making sure not to pour any sediment from the can.
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Last edited by Sabreman; 07-06-2009 at 01:23 PM.
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