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Old 02-21-2009, 08:01 AM   #1
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HI All

On Blue Lady we have a 47hp Yanmar with an SD31 saildrive. The problem is kind of small right now but not knowing our lady all that well we both worry that it may potentially become a life threatener.

The problem is that evry now and again when shutting down the engine she doesnt. You turn the key to the off position then hit the stop button. She will stall like she is shutting down then burst back to life. After a couple of these moments we discovered that we just turn the key to the on position then back to off and she will then stop, but not always. One time she stayed running till we had stopped at anchor before she would shut down.

The converse discovery was whenever we had one of these moments we couldnt get the motor to start after the shutdown. On one occasion we got caught by a nasty wind shift/bullet that found us on a lee shore with a wind that went from 5 kn from the NE to 35+KN from the SW. Whilst our anchor was holding quite comfortably it was bloody diconcerning when the motor refused to even make a noise. This has happened a few more times since then but none more scary than that one.

Has anyone had a similar experience and how did you solve it, as my mechanic has told me he has no idea.

Cheers

Rob & Annette

S/V Blue Lady
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Old 02-21-2009, 08:23 AM   #2
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I'm sure that others will be along shortly to offer some suggestions. In the meantime, THIS TOPIC (Runaway diesels) will also be of interest.

Good luck in sorting out the problem.
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Old 02-21-2009, 10:48 AM   #3
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Ho Folks from Tawoomba - my favourite garden city.

What model Yanmar do you have, and how old is she ?

As you are aware Yanmar as with many other diesel engines, shuts down via a solenoid which cuts off the fuel supply, no fuel = stop, as the high compression alone ignites the fuel vapor (mixture of air and diesel - no spark required)

So check all the electrical connections to and from the solenoid. (including the on/off switch !)
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Old 02-21-2009, 11:20 AM   #4
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Hi

She is a 1998 model but the actual model number I couldnt tell you offhand. Other than this problem she doesnt miss a beat.

Cheers

Rob & Annette

S/V Blue Lady
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Old 02-21-2009, 11:36 AM   #5
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Is the engine using a fair amount of oil?

Is the engine "making" oil? i.e. Is the sump oil level rising and/or thinning at all?
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Old 02-21-2009, 11:38 AM   #6
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Hello Rob and Annette,

From the HP and the year I guess she belongs to the, 4JH2SERIES Model Engines.

Is she turbo charged ? if so, when was the last time the turbo had a wash ??

Richard
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Old 02-22-2009, 11:51 AM   #7
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I second the person who said to check out the connections to the solenoid, and possibly the solenoid itself. I had a similar problem on a Vetus P.409 which gradually got worse to the point where the engine would no longer stop when turning off the key. Fixed the problem by replacing the solenoid and the wiring to it.
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Old 02-22-2009, 12:01 PM   #8
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Also: This is a relatively common problem as far as I can tell. Not starting is relatively easy to diagnose too -- as long as the fuel is going in and the shaft is turning and there is no fall in compression, all of which are easy to test, a diesel engine must start. If your mechanic can't diagnose this, find a new mechanic.
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Old 02-22-2009, 09:50 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qldcruiser View Post
You turn the key to the off position then hit the stop button. She will stall like she is shutting down then burst back to life. After a couple of these moments we discovered that we just turn the key to the on position then back to off and she will then stop, but not always. One time she stayed running till we had stopped at anchor before she would shut down.
I am not sure if this is the problem, but the manual of my Yanmar 3MY30 clearly states not to turn off the key before shutting the engine by pressing the stop button. Turning off the key while the engine is running can damage the alternator.
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Old 02-22-2009, 11:16 PM   #10
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I suggest that either oil blow by (going into pistons and burning) or fuel getting by the fuel shut-off valve/solenoid. Somethin's getting in there to burn
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Old 02-23-2009, 07:57 PM   #11
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Hi All

Yes, she is a turbo model. She isnt making oil or anything like that. My first thoughts were electrical and are even more so now. The solenoid option to me certainly fits the bill. The no start is exactly that, no turn, no anything just unwanted silence. I have decided rather than my mechanic try ot myself for that matter, I will have an Marine electrician check it and install a remote starter button that bypasses everything as a hail mary feature.

Thanks for the great advice.

Cheers

Robert & Annette

S/V Blue Lady
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Old 02-24-2009, 03:35 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qldcruiser View Post
The no start is exactly that, no turn, no anything just unwanted silence. I have decided rather than my mechanic try ot myself for that matter, I will have an Marine electrician check it and install a remote starter button that bypasses everything as a hail mary feature.
This is an electrical problem, probably caused by a burnt out or corroded lead going to the starter motor or its solenoid (like a heavy-duty on/off switch that can be operated remotely), or more likely a connection on one of those leads. Those problems are easy to diagnose with a multimeter -- a marine electrician should be your first point of call (or go over the connections yourself with a multimeter, a wire brush, and a can of spray lanolin or similar).

The starter motor wiring is remarkably simple. One set of heavy leads going from the engine battery posts to the motor itself, and another set of wires going between the solenoid, the switch, and the battery posts. This wiring has to be simple because of the high current that it carries -- can be several hundred amps for a large engine. If you try to make the cabling too long, complex, or undersized, then it just won't work. So being that it's all simple enough, you may want to invest in a good digital multimeter and get in there with the probe ends and check it out yourself.
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Old 02-25-2009, 09:49 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by delatbabel View Post
This is an electrical problem, probably caused by a burnt out or corroded lead going to the starter motor or its solenoid (like a heavy-duty on/off switch that can be operated remotely), or more likely a connection on one of those leads. Those problems are easy to diagnose with a multimeter -- a marine electrician should be your first point of call (or go over the connections yourself with a multimeter, a wire brush, and a can of spray lanolin or similar).

The starter motor wiring is remarkably simple. One set of heavy leads going from the engine battery posts to the motor itself, and another set of wires going between the solenoid, the switch, and the battery posts. This wiring has to be simple because of the high current that it carries -- can be several hundred amps for a large engine. If you try to make the cabling too long, complex, or undersized, then it just won't work. So being that it's all simple enough, you may want to invest in a good digital multimeter and get in there with the probe ends and check it out yourself.
Hi like others i seemt to point to solenoid
  • Solenoid earthing i not good(disconnect and clean earthing)
  • Low voltage solenoid is DC powers needs 12VDC flux is 10% any lower ore above will start to rattle (measure voltage to solenoid)
  • Key switch contact is sticking or burned internal contact ( to test run separate 12V+ wire direct to solenoid(disconnect old wire First) of starting and stopping when you disconnect wire)replace key switch

This way you can make the right decision ( my bet is key switch)

Good luck
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Old 02-25-2009, 10:38 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lynger1 View Post
Hi like others i seemt to point to solenoid
  • Solenoid earthing i not good(disconnect and clean earthing)
  • Low voltage solenoid is DC powers needs 12VDC flux is 10% any lower ore above will start to rattle (measure voltage to solenoid)
  • Key switch contact is sticking or burned internal contact ( to test run separate 12V+ wire direct to solenoid(disconnect old wire First) of starting and stopping when you disconnect wire)replace key switch
This way you can make the right decision ( my bet is key switch)

Good luck
Yes, this is good advice, I would say it's 80% chance of key switch contact, external or internal, 10% chance of contact actually at the solenoid end of the wire from the key switch, and 10% chance of corrosion being a problem somewhere in that wiring. As lynger1 points out just run wires from the battery direct to the various contact points and that will isolate your problem.

All of those problems will mean you will have < 12 volts at the solenoid. Disconnect the wiring across the solenoid, plug it into a multimeter, and turn the key on, and see what happens. If the multimeter reads 12 - 12.8 V or so then you're in business. If the multimeter reads something like 9V or 10V, or if it flickers up to 12V then back to 0 and up to 6 and then 10 and then 0 and all over the place like that, then you've found your fault.
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