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Old 10-26-2009
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Fire Extinguisher Halotron

After a false alam early this season (a smoking refrigeration complrssor in the engine compartment) and a recommendation from my insurance company I wanted to add a fire port and one of the new halon replacement extinguishers to protect the engine compartment. I was going with the gaseous / halon type extinguishers because when used they leave no residue and have no of the thermal shock issues of CO2 extinguishers (probably not good for a hor diesel).

I was considering two Kidde Halotron extinguishers as they have hoses that could be used to distribute the agent through a fire port that I planed to install between the companionway steps at the front of the engine compartment. Because of the companionway steps I don't think that any type of non-hose extinguisher would work.

I did not want to go with a fixed mount automatic type setup within the engine compartment because I don't think I have a good place to locate the extinguisher and an automatic engine kill accessory is required needed for automatic units greatly adding to the cost. The Halotron extinguishers are expensive enough. A manual fixed mount with a manual cable pull might work but I still have fitement issues with the fixed mount. Another pluse for the portable is that it would also be available for non-engine compartment use.

The problem Im having is in sizing the Halotron extinguishers. Kidde does not give cubic feet rating for these extinguishers. They provide the UL rating (1A 10B-C for the 11lb madel and 2A 10B-C for the 15.5 lb model). The fixed mount units are rated for cubic feet. I'm estimating the engine compartment at 72 cu ft (3 d' X 4' l X 6' w).

A call to West Marine obtained a suggestion to use the rating of similar sized fixed mount extinguishers. However the fixed mount units use a different type of halon replacement (agent FE-241) so I'm not sure if the agent weights and respective cu. ft. ratings translate directly from FE 241 to Halotron.

Anyone have any thoughts info? I was thinking of calling my local coast guard station to try and get some info.
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Old 10-26-2009
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I did Crash/Rescue in a former life. I'd go with the largest extinguisher practical for the installation. If you're on fire you really can't have "too much" agent. Having some extra will give you some margin in case you're not proficient in using the agent.

S/V Elnora
Pacific Seacraft "Crealock" 37 #312

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Old 10-26-2009
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I don't know much about the Halon replacement agents, in the Army we still use Halon in our vehicles.
I know you said you didn't want to, but if you are considering to install a manual pull station or 2, as I plan to do when I overhaul my future boat; take into consideration the old system has a substantial concussion effect when fired off. Depending on how close you are to the units when it fires off, it could severely injure someone, including but not limited to permanent hearing loss (I have seen this personally); let alone the damage that may result to a fiberglass structure. Even with a pull station or 2, I plan to still have at least 2 hand held extinguishers readily available on board.
Now, I since I am unfamiliar with the new Halon replacement systems this all may not apply, but it is worth considering.

Take Care!


Last edited by Sandflea; 10-26-2009 at 03:03 PM.
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