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SOLAS compliant fuel pipe savings

SOLAS compliant fuel pipe savings

The saying goes that “you can’t put a price on safety”. But here’s the reality: to comply with the latest safety regulations, there is usually a significant investment, and at times, it can seem pretty extortionate. Take the example of one of the marine operators we work with. He needed to upgrade to SOLAS compliant double skin fuel pipes, and for their inline 6-cylinder engine (375hp) were quoted €6,000. Granted,...

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Engine power shortfall: where to start

Engine power shortfall: where to start

Where would you start if one of your engines was down on power? This is the question we were posed with the other day when a rebuilt engine was not performing on test. Against an expected output of 608 BHP, the engine was only delivering 413 BHP.The logical starting point for investigation is the fuel and air systems because without them operating properly, combustion will be inefficient and you won’t get the power. If your engine is...

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Tappets issue on Cat 3508B-DITA

Tappets issue on Cat 3508B-DITA

The other day we were carrying out some inspections on a client’s Caterpillar 3508B-DITA engine when we came across the following.  (Recognise them?) The item at the bottom of the picture is the push rod from the engine we were working on, and the other is a serviceable part. Clearly there’s a bit of a difference between them, with significant wear on the client’s push rod. With these particular push rods (like most push...

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Cat 3508 water in fuel – the cause

Cat 3508 water in fuel – the cause

Did you see the last post about the problems caused to an operator by water in the fuel of his Cat 3508 propulsion engine? It sparked a lot of interest. Some people shared similar experiences. Others had questions on what the root cause was, so thought I’d share this with you. If you’re not sure what I’m on about, you can see what happened to the vessel in the shipping channel here. Whilst in port the superintendent arranged...

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Water in fuel

When would be the worst time for your engine to fail? The answer to that question will be different depending on your industry, and for one of our clients the answer is definitely “during peak scallop season” and whilst the vessel is in a major shipping lane. And sadly, that’s exactly what happened – with their Cat 3508 propulsion engine failing, they had to be towed to port!! The owner had recently bought this vessel,...

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Major concern in this crankcase.

Major concern in this crankcase.

One of our service engineers is on a client’s site working on their Cummins KTA50 engine this week. Nothing unusual about that, but had he arrived a day or two later, he’d have faced a MUCH bigger problem. Initially, the operator called to let us know that a lot of smoke was coming from the crankcase breather, and that can be caused by various things – most commonly it’s the piston rings not sealing against the cylinder...

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