Remote operated fuel shut-off valves

dcr

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Hi, I wonder if someone may be able to advise on how best to fit the above.

My boat is a twin Volvo TAMD40 engined Corvette 32 and my insurer wants me to do this along with other mod's as they were recommended by the surveyor at purchase. Currently there are two fuel tanks (one per engine) not interconnected, sited below the wheelhouse floor. The fuel lines from each tank to each engine have isolating ball type valves hand operated by levers. The surveyor suggested some form of cable operated method to close the lever from above in the wheelhouse, but I do not think this is practical. We could fit motorised 12v valves, but this could prove expensive for something that is very unlikely to be needed. No mention was made about the cooling water inlet valves even though they could present a similar problem and we need to lift the wheelhouse floor to open/close them, which currently is when the fuel is also turned off/on.

So, has anyone any other ideas - has anyone already done this - what type of valves would be best?

I look forward to hearing from you.
Many thanks,
dcr
 

jrudge

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They are usually ball / lever valves as you suggest that have a wire attached to the end. The sleeve is secured so that when you pull the handle the value shuts.

All boats I have owned have had them, as in a fire you need to shut off the fuel. For that reason motorised valves would seem to introduce complexity and issues if they would work in a fire when you would also have shut down the electric system.

The closest I can find on Google is

https://www.google.com/imgres?imgur...O_gAhWxqHEKHRrjD6cQMwhlKBcwFw&iact=mrc&uact=8
 

Plum

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They are usually ball / lever valves as you suggest that have a wire attached to the end. The sleeve is secured so that when you pull the handle the value shuts.

All boats I have owned have had them, as in a fire you need to shut off the fuel. For that reason motorised valves would seem to introduce complexity and issues if they would work in a fire when you would also have shut down the electric system.

The closest I can find on Google is

https://www.google.com/imgres?imgur...O_gAhWxqHEKHRrjD6cQMwhlKBcwFw&iact=mrc&uact=8

Or this https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Canton-A...ot-Cable-24-506-/281493535777?redirect=mobile

I have a short length of 4mm stainless rod that engages on a hole in the end of the ball valve lever with a knob on the other end. The knob is visible when i open a locker with a big label next to it.

Www.solocoastalsailing.co.uk
 
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superheat6k

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On my Corvette 32 I fitted fuel pre filters in the deep fwd floor locker, with ball valves on the inlets to the filters. To these I have fitted some cycle brake cable inner cables, linked on a simple fulcrum and led back to a manual choke handle on the dash front.

A tug on the handle and the ball valves are pulled shut.

But I did this for my own requirements. Never heard of an Insurer requiring this, so suggest you find another surveyor who isn't such a dick.
 

Assassin

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Never heard of an Insurer requiring this, so suggest you find another surveyor who isn't such a dick.


Totally agree, the fuel shut off solenoid does this and in the event of a fire it burns through the insulation and shorts it out or it burns through the cable and you lose power and it shuts off. Most engines have some sort of fuel shut off and most are manually operated valves and most are mounted near to the tanks, some other forms of fuel shut off valves are key operated and you have to turn them on and off with a specific key and these are more security biased.
 

Portofino

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Totally agree, the fuel shut off solenoid does this and in the event of a fire it burns through the insulation and shorts it out or it burns through the cable and you lose power and it shuts off. Most engines have some sort of fuel shut off and most are manually operated valves and most are mounted near to the tanks, some other forms of fuel shut off valves are key operated and you have to turn them on and off with a specific key and these are more security biased.

There’s engine shut offs , that the electro +ve open solinoid on the pump .

Then there’s remote operated tank cocks which is what this is about , as WELL as not instead of .

Interestingly we have a bit more ( came with the boat ) .
Remote handles with Bowden type cables for
-Fuel cocks on the tank
-Air vent flaps
-Detonate the inert gas cylinder .
- Engine stops .......................all in a row by the side of the helm .

Then as well as ignition ( turn the key off ) we have a seperate electronic pull off knobs .

So to stop the engines 3 ways from the helm seat all independently
Turn the key back to the LHS .
Pull a manual stop - in the row of other fire ex
Pull a red stop knob positioned on top of the ignition on the dash ,

Come to think a 4 th the red emergency stops in the ER on the MAN black boxes / main ECU s


So it seems odd the surveyor has majored on just one aspect the tank cock wanting that remote ?
 

jrudge

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Totally agree, the fuel shut off solenoid does this and in the event of a fire it burns through the insulation and shorts it out or it burns through the cable and you lose power and it shuts off. Most engines have some sort of fuel shut off and most are manually operated valves and most are mounted near to the tanks, some other forms of fuel shut off valves are key operated and you have to turn them on and off with a specific key and these are more security biased.

To suggest that you rely on the fire to burn through the wiring to then shut off the fuel is I fell one of the more obscure suggestions to cross the forum.

Perhaps - just perhaps it might be better to shut the fuel off before it has go to the stage of engulfing the engines for however long it takes to burn through the electrical cables ( which might be never if they are well spaced and hence don't short when the insulation melts.
 

rosssavage

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On my Corvette 32 I fitted fuel pre filters in the deep fwd floor locker, with ball valves on the inlets to the filters. To these I have fitted some cycle brake cable inner cables, linked on a simple fulcrum and led back to a manual choke handle on the dash front.

A tug on the handle and the ball valves are pulled shut.

But I did this for my own requirements. Never heard of an Insurer requiring this, so suggest you find another surveyor who isn't such a dick.

Your last sentiment is definitely my quote of the week!!

And I agree... never heard of a surveyor suggesting this, and the vast majority of boats won’t have it!

My old Princess has a rather neat, simple as it gets solution - the tank cocks are located at the rear of the saloon, under hatches by the patio doors. As you leg it out of the saloon, just reach down, lift the carpet and close the valves.

No lever, Bowden cable, solenoid, just really sensible citing of the fuel cocks that every boat has
 

petem

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There’s engine shut offs , that the electro +ve open solinoid on the pump .

Then there’s remote operated tank cocks which is what this is about , as WELL as not instead of .

Interestingly we have a bit more ( came with the boat ) .
Remote handles with Bowden type cables for
-Fuel cocks on the tank
-Air vent flaps
-Detonate the inert gas cylinder .
- Engine stops .......................all in a row by the side of the helm .


Then as well as ignition ( turn the key off ) we have a seperate electronic pull off knobs .

So to stop the engines 3 ways from the helm seat all independently
Turn the key back to the LHS .
Pull a manual stop - in the row of other fire ex
Pull a red stop knob positioned on top of the ignition on the dash ,

Come to think a 4 th the red emergency stops in the ER on the MAN black boxes / main ECU s

So it seems odd the surveyor has majored on just one aspect the tank cock wanting that remote ?

In the event of a fire, what's your sequence?
 

Portofino

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In the event of a fire, what's your sequence?

They are actually lined up in a row ( sorry can’t find a pic ) labelled in Italian and in the owners manual also in IT

Port + stb air vents - that’s the first two
Engine stop s
Inert gas discharge - one
fuel cocks last , two cocks .

Based on not wanting the engines to gobble up X cubic meters of inert gas and fresh air drawn in to fan any flames .
 

Portofino

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My old Princess has a rather neat, simple as it gets solution - the tank cocks are located at the rear of the saloon, under hatches by the patio doors. As you leg it out of the saloon, just reach down, lift the carpet and close the valves.

No lever, Bowden cable, solenoid, just really sensible citing of the fuel cocks that every boat has

Depends , depends
I prefer the main out to engine cock to be as low as poss on the tank .This means in the ER .This is because I can occasionally pull off the pipe / rubber fuel hose to drain / inspect the bottom area of the tank , check all is well .
So “down there “ it needs a Bowden cable .

So let me get this straight you are turning of a cock just under saloon / cocklpit level - right ?
Is there a hose to that ? From lower down which might burn through?
Or is the out to engines drawn from the top of your tanks ? Hence the high cock just under a floor board??
If so how would you say draw it bit off checking for water or bug etc ??
 

rosssavage

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Drawn from the top of the tanks via internal stand pipes, copper pipe work to cocks - no rubber hoses.

Both tanks have sump drains, so fuel contamination checks easy peasy :)

The sump drains are also connected across ship with a tank balance pipe, which is closed both ends with cocks again. I only open the balance pipe valves whilst fuelling.
 

PilotWolf

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KISS.

A simple pull system that requires nothing other than someone pulling on the lever/wire.

Even in our big vessels it is a valve that is 90 degrees to off by one simple turn.

W.
 

Uricanejack

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I think I would be asking the insurance company. why?
Certainly I agree with getting a difrent surveyor who is not such a dick. I would be tempted to ask which standard he is referring to if requiring a fuel shut off.
If your boat is compliment with EU or British requirements at time of build why is it a requirement now.
Your boats a 32 ft diesel power boat. I would think this would be a rare fitting in most boats of this sise. Certainly not an easy retro fit.

If it were a new build I would say it was a good idea. Fit a proper remote closing valve. Preferably activated from the same location as your remotely operated fire system.
I don’t know if you would say they are the best. Most quick closing fuel valves are spring loaded gate type valves activated by a hydraulic or pneumatic activator which release the spring. Standard on comercial vessel fuel systems. Expensive overkill for a 32ft pleasure boat. Unless you intend to upgrade the entire fuel system.
I would think it’s kind of pointless putting an expensive remote operated spring loaded quick closing valve into a rubber fuel line.

You can bodge it with a simple wire pull. Ball valve, Which will require a hole drilled through something. Probably at least 1 wheel to get the direction of the pull right. I suppose this is in keeping with my bodged hole to put a fire extinguisher nozzle in.
Still just a bodge it job. Not something I would realistically expect to work in an actual fire.

There are electrical solenoid valves for water systems. I couldn’t see any rated for fuel system. Even so I think it would work much better than a ball valve. Though eventually may lead to starting problem if it’s tied to ignition. When the solenoid or current to the solenoid fails your engine will shut down.
 
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PilotWolf

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I think I would be asking the insurance company. why?
Certainly I agree with getting a difrent surveyor who is not such a dick. I would be tempted to ask which standard he is referring to if requiring a fuel shut off.
If your boat is compliment with EU or British requirements at time of build why is it a requirement now.
Your boats a 32 ft diesel power boat. I would think this would be a rare fitting in most boats of this sise. Certainly not an easy retro fit.

If it were a new build I would say it was a good idea. Fit a proper remote closing valve. Preferably activated from the same location as your remotely operated fire system.
You can bodge it with a simple wire pull. Which will require a hole drilled through something. I suppose this is in keeping with my bodged hole to put a fire extinguisher nozzle in.
Which is still just a bodge it job.

It really is not that of difficult after fit and may well save the boat in the even if an engine room fire. It's a valve per supply line, a few feet of wire cable and a posh pull handle if that's what you want.

In the event of a fire remove the oxygen and now remove the fuel source and use the extinguisher of choice.

W
 

scottie

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I am not sure of the effectiveness of using “plastic “ sheathed cables in the event of a fire having seen them afterward but the alternative is galvanised outers which unless regularly moved can seize.

Many surveyors do have certain almost hobby horses it would appear I wonder if they have the bite marks also?
 
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