(very) cold start!

alisdair4

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I am putting my boat back in the water after a break (work-imposed) of some 18 months. The engine is a raw-water cooled Volvo Penta MD11c, about 26 years old. When the boat was laid-up in Aug 09, the engine was winterised (ie, run through for 30 minutes with antifreeze and water mix). The pump impeller was removed, and the fan belt slackened. I intend to re-start the engine this coming weekend to save time when it comes to the launch week in April.
I will do an oil and filter change after the engine is running (ie, the oil is hot).

Apart from ensuring that the engine is turned over a few times with the decompression levers out (to prevent premature starting and make sure that there is sufficient oil sprayed around in the engine) is there anything else I should consider doing ?

(it goes without saying that I will provide a cold water feed to the raw water strainer...!)
 

VicS

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Lug it round a few times with the flywheel to make sure every thing is Ok and free.

make sure you have plenty of battery power available.

Might be worth bleeding the fuel system .. Cant hurt


Dont turn the water on until it starts (then do so without unnecessary delay) or you will flood the exhaust and then the cylinders.

It'll take while but it'll start My friends old one has no perceptible compression but it starts. On one cylinder to begin with but eventually the second one fires as well

we had no troubles when it had been unused for several years. Just took a bit longer.

Don't crank continuously for ages . Crank a bit, wait a bit, crank a bit more etc or the wiring and the starter motor will get a bit too warm.

Got the handle ? forget it!
 

alisdair4

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Vic, Presumably it would be worth using the handle just to turn the engine over, and lessen the jolt to the battery and starter motor (when I'm doing the preliminary bit.) (I don't have a question mark on this keyboard!)
 

VicS

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Yes probably I was really meaning don't try starting it with the handle.

We lost the handle but used to turn it via the flywheel now and then while it was not in use.

That one is now in the possession of the late owners son. He is planning to lift it out take it home and completely overhaul it this year.

Its had two new heads on it some years back so might be feasible , but it's going to cost a good few hundred pounds, assuming the parts he'll need are still available.

I have mentioned Beta engines to him!
 

Stu Jackson

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Instead of the decompression lever, just try starting with the kill handle pulled, if you have one. If not, do as suggested. No reason I see to worry about having the seacock for cooling water shut off until starting - just don't crank for more than 30 seconds at a time to avoid fulling up the muffler. If it doesn't start before 30 seconds you've got other "issues.":)
 

sailorman

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I am putting my boat back in the water after a break (work-imposed) of some 18 months. The engine is a raw-water cooled Volvo Penta MD11c, about 26 years old. When the boat was laid-up in Aug 09, the engine was winterised (ie, run through for 30 minutes with antifreeze and water mix). The pump impeller was removed, and the fan belt slackened. I intend to re-start the engine this coming weekend to save time when it comes to the launch week in April.
I will do an oil and filter change after the engine is running (ie, the oil is hot).

Apart from ensuring that the engine is turned over a few times with the decompression levers out (to prevent premature starting and make sure that there is sufficient oil sprayed around in the engine) is there anything else I should consider doing ?

(it goes without saying that I will provide a cold water feed to the raw water strainer...!)

feed the cooling water from a bucket & hose by gravity NOT a hose on a mains tap or you will flood the engine
 

Bilgediver

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Apart from ensuring that the engine is turned over a few times with the decompression levers out (to prevent premature starting and make sure that there is sufficient oil sprayed around in the engine) is there anything else I should consider doing ?

(it goes without saying that I will provide a cold water feed to the raw water strainer...!)

With these old engines the best way to start after a layup is to remove the airfilters and squirt in about 5 spurts of oil with a lever oil can to each cylinder so it gets to the inlet valve. Then wind the engine over by hand several times decompressed to spread the oil around. All this turning will also prime the bearing lubs system from the sump.

If you are starting out of the water DO NOT connect a hose to the engine or you will be back asking for help to rebuild the engine:D

You just need a bucket of water for the engine to draw from and this will last long enough for a test.

So long as you have primed the fuel system so that fuel appears at slackened injector HP fuel line nuts then the engine will start immediately after retightening them.

I usually dose the engine with oil at layup like this and have had it start when I have given it a quick blip just to turn it to check the drive couplings etc.

Do not be tempted to use easy start. It would have to be really knackered not to start imediately with well oiled pistons and valves.

Just make sure you wind it over several times after oiling to ensure any surplus oil is spread around.
 

Rafiki

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If you have shore power then use an ordinary electric fan heater to heat the engine up for quite a long time (to warm the oil up) and then really heat the engine air intake up - will probably start first time then !
 

Jcorstorphine

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Use a hot air gun

On my old Volvo MD2B, i removed one of the air filters and stuck in the nozzel of a hot air gun. Lifted the decompressors to get the engine spinning on the starter and then closed the one with the hot air gun followed by the second one. Works a treat.

John
 

alan_d

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On my old Volvo MD2B, i removed one of the air filters and stuck in the nozzel of a hot air gun. Lifted the decompressors to get the engine spinning on the starter and then closed the one with the hot air gun followed by the second one. Works a treat.

I tried this on a Range Rover some years ago....

Set fire to the paper element in the air-cleaner.
 

LONG_KEELER

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On my old Volvo MD2B, i removed one of the air filters and stuck in the nozzel of a hot air gun. Lifted the decompressors to get the engine spinning on the starter and then closed the one with the hot air gun followed by the second one. Works a treat.

John
Would agree. Heat is very good.

My volvo has no glow plug and would have to send it down an RNLI ramp otherwise.
 

alisdair4

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Not so cold engine

Well, after all the good advice from fellow forumites, I preheated the engine with a fan heater, turned it over a few times with the decompression levers off, and she started in 20 seconds. Not bad after 18 months . Thanks to all for the help.
 
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