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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi folks,

I got into a very serious problem the other day.
I have a new Yanmar 4JH57 the new common rail engine. 300 hours on the clock. It has a new pre-filter replacing the Racor 500. The inlet on the new Yanmar pre-filter has a Banjo bolt where the fuel must turn at 90 degrees and go through a hole in the bolt about 1mm wide.


This turn gunked up and the engine stopped.... in a remarkably difficult and dangerous location with a contrary current of 5 knots and me being only able to sail at 1.3 knots - directly towards the rocks!!! With another 6 hours of current sucking me into the infamous Alderney race with currents up to 9 knots.

If it had stopped 15 minutes later there is no way I could have turned around and been able to sail into the current.

So I had a fun few hours trying to sail and locate the fuel fault.
Also the filter needs a spanner/wrench far larger than I have so I couldn't change the filter at sea!

On a brand new engine its not expected to stop!
Anyway I finally traced it back to the Banjo Bolt and its tiny hole. A tiny piece of orange plastic has gummed it up then crap built up around it.
I though a pre-filter was meant to suck anything out of the tank and filter it before the primary fuel filter mounted on the engine.

I do not want / and will not have this possible situation again. Cruising boats can often pick up dirty fuel (I've fuelled in Venezuela, Egypt, Oman, Indonesia, Malaysia etc) or some goop can get in or grow, no matter the additives etc.

My solution is to buy a new Racor 500 as a pre-pre-filter and to mount it in the aft cabin on the external riser for the bunk, adjacent but on the outside wall to the Yanmar filter. Thus I will be able to ensure gunk the size that blocked the Banjo Bolt will not cause a problem, and that I can visually see the Racor from the Saloon, and change that Racor filter in less than 1 minute.

I found the problem and cleaned the Banjo Bolt and was able to get back to harbour no problems... but by then another bit of gunk was in the bolt.
I pumped out the whole tank and filtered the fuel and its clean as a whistle.

I will upload a pic of the problem off my phone in a few moments... but heres a location snap of exactly where you do NOT wanna have the engine clag up.

Your comments appreciated.


Mark
 

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Good job on making without scratching up the rocks off the cape at Cherbourg! I had the space in the engine compartment and put in a dual Racor system before the engine fuel filter and so far it has done a good job (apart from the episode where I had more water than fuel - no filter can keep up with that). I had a lot of gunk in the lines as well despite the fuel tank being clean.

Could the plastic piece have come into the system during the commissioning/installation process ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
The black goobie bits are flattened.

I 'think' the orange it came in from a gerry can. Dunno how.

The filter show shows how much gunk I got out of the fuel tank. Negligible.

BTW, the passage was a major shake-a-thon and I only had about 50 litres of fuel in the tank, so classic stirred up sediment.

[most spelling corrected :) ]
 

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Lol Mark - either you've been sipping at the medicinal alcohol or your spell-checker has :)

I does look nasty - did that black stuff also make it past your filter? Is that electrical connection under the filter for the water-warning buzzer?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Lol Mark - either you've been sipping at the medicinal alcohol or your spell-checker has :)

I does look nasty - did that black stuff also make it past your filter? Is that electrical connection under the filter for the water-warning buzzer?
Spelling corrected :)

The black stuff was stuck in the Banjo Bolt before getting into the filter.

Yes, the wires below are for the water alarm. Its that part I cant unscrew at sea without a better tool.

With your dual racors:
Do 2 Racors slow down the fuel flow?
What micro filters are you using?

I was thinking the 30 micron... but if fuel flow isnt slowed down could I use 10 micron or even 2 micron?
With 2 micron the pre-filter and the engine mounted fuel filter would never need to filter anything.

Mark
 

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So these new fangled Yanmars come with both an engine mounted and remote pre-filter?

Sounds like I'd lose the Yanmar pre-filter altogether and replace with a Racor. Intuitively, those bango fitting are not the best inlet for a fuel filter.

I'm not a fan of dual 2 micron filters in series. That means that everything clogs the first filter and nothing ever gets to the second. If you had real sediment, I think that shuts off the fuel sooner.

I use a 30 micron Racor and a 2 micron engine mounted. The big stuff is caught first, as well as the Racor separating any water, then the 2 micron gets anything left over. Change them both on schedule, which is annual for my use. I would change every 6 months, if I was full time and taking on suspect fuel.
 

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Mark - As someone has already noted, the dual Racor doesn't run the fuel through both filters, just one. But if that filter becomes clogged I can switch over to the other filter with the engine still running and then have time to replace the other. I did this so that I can, when necessary, run the engine with bad fuel as long as I have sufficient clean filters for replacement. I have 30 micron filters in the Racors and the filter on the engine is a 2 micron one. When I replaced that filter it was still clean so the Racor is doing its job. The whole assembly is pretty big and you might not have enough room on your boat for it, but a single Racor with shut-off valves on both sides of it should be sufficient.

I have an electrical warning as well for water, but that didn't work when my engine ingested water or the wires might have worked but I heard no buzzer or alarm. Do you know if your water alarm is functional?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Fuel line going INTO the pre-filter has a right angle turn into this tiny hole in the Banjo Bolt.

Crazy!
 

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Fuel line going INTO the pre-filter has a right angle turn into this tiny hole in the Banjo Bolt.

Crazy!
Crazy is right. I'd remove the whole thing and replace it with the Racor, rather than just add a Racor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Crazy is right. I'd remove the whole thing and replace it with the Racor, rather than just add a Racor.
Yeah I think you're right. But I am wondering about the wires out of the yanmar filter that give the water warning. If they are not used does it effect the electronics in some way? I doubt it but I will ask before removing it.
Or I could just bypass the yanmar filter.
 

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You can get a water alarm for a Racor as well. I'm not sure, but suspect it would be the same wiring. If not, I doubt the boat stops working, if the alarm is inop. YMMV.
 
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One thing I substantially prefer about the Racor 500, over the Yanmar filter in your pic, is the clear bowl. You can visually see sediment and water.

You probably know this, but the 500 comes with and without a metal cup under the clear plastic bowl. I understand the metal cup is necessary, if mounted in the engine compartment. I'm really not sure if it's to deflect heat or catch a drip. It's nearly impossible to ignite dripping diesel fuel, unless a fire is already raging, in which case, I don't see the cup helping. :eek
 
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Mark,

A question.

Does this troublesome Yanmar filter have a hand pump on its top? I think I see one in the picture. That might be a nice feature to retain if possible.

Is there a way to replace the banjo fitting with something more straight forward? I’ve had good success with a Parker dealer helping me out with odd fittings.
 

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I had the dual racors and never found them clogged etc. from bad fuel. I decided to remove one and so have on single pre filter. Maybe I use so little fuel which is clean that I don't get logged and clogged filters. Engine filter is changed each year regardless.

How much fuel do you use before you you need to replace a racor?
 

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Almost unheard of to pump bad fuel in New England. Water maybe, but still uncommon.

I've been in third world countries, where fuel has been hand cranked out of 55 gallon barrels off a flat bed truck. Into an aircraft! Guess how long you sit there on the ramp, running up the engines to insure the fuel isn't contaminated. :eek
 

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Almost unheard of to pump bad fuel in New England. Water maybe, but still uncommon.

I've been in third world countries, where fuel has been hand cranked out of 55 gallon barrels off a flat bed truck. Into an aircraft! Guess how long you sit there on the ramp, running up the engines to insure the fuel isn't contaminated. :eek
I think the fuel I buy at the dock is clean and high quality and super filtering should not be necessary except for breakdown and gunk which may accumulate in the tank. Of course it's not a bad idea... but likely a but of overkill. Offshore is a different story.
 

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The water alarm is triggered when the resistance between the two wires drops. I'm not sure if diesel conducts much or not at all, but any water in the fuel will be contaminated enough to be a good conductor - so the alarm will go off when the resistance goes towards 0Ohm. This makes it easy to test if you can access the plug end of the alarm cables, just turn on the ignition (the engine doesn't have to be running) and short the two cables and listen to see if a buzzer goes off. I didn't test this on my engine because I couldn't get at the plug for the cable and wasn't going to drain the fuel filter again just to check this.
 
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