Tag Archives: fuel injectors

2010 Week 22 in Review

Washington injectors, finished!

This week, OTM Inc finally finished rebuilding the injectors for the Timber Heritage Association‘s Estep yarder. Two of the three operate well, but the third has a smashed tip that I hope they’ll order replaced soon. In the meantime, all three injectors look great!

Enterprise injectors, begun

Martin from Hatch & Kirk is working on a new injector nozzle for a G Enterprise, so we dug up one of our spare heads to check the spray angle and tip depth into the cylinder.

Martin and I also disassembled four injectors from the Maris Pearl, then inspected, reassembled, and tested each. It turns out that even though they were leaking, three of them were within specs. The fourth was ruined and it’s a good thing we changed it out: the pintle had been badly scored, possibly from dirt. We’ll discard the worn parts and save the rest for spares.

Lightship 83 Request for Proposals

In the office, we’ve made a bunch of revisions to the draft Request for Proposals for the Lightship project. Hopefully, it will go out on the street soon.

Work on the Arthur Foss

OTM Inc is assisting Ocean Bay Marine in buttoning up the Arthur Foss. We’ve decided to pull the tarp and seal up the wheel house as best we can with the funding available. This will bring the work on the wheel house to a good stopping point, but not a finishing point. We hope to tackle it again next summer with renewed funding dedicated to the project.

Work on the Maris Pearl

Meanwhile, back on the Pearl, we’re looking for water leaks in the engine, as it seems a few cylinders are leaking water into the base – not enough to turn the oil milky or anything, but still a few drips when it’s cold (none when it’s warm). It looks like we will be changing out some cylinder heads soon.

California Planning

In future news, OTM Inc is planning a trip south to see the Portola and the Sobre las Olas. We got a request to perform an engine survey for the Portola, in addition to doing a few repairs and acting as engineer for a few trips. A potential buyer who obviously has really good taste fell in love with the boat and wants some technical advice and assistance. I’m looking forward to seeing her out cruising again, so I hope the sale works out.

While in California, I’ll do some more work on the Sobre, another beautiful heavy-duty yacht. This ought to be a fun trip. Details soon.

OTM Inc, the educators

For years, we at OTM Inc have been using heavy-duty diesels as training aids to people new to diesels. Our collaborative high school classes have won high praise, and now we’re working with The Anchor Program to design more educational opportunities for those interested in engines and boats. More on this later.

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2010 Week 21 In Review

This week, OTM Inc finished changing out the injectors on the Maris Pearl and bled all the air out with a big pry bar under the injection pump. With the fuel rack at full, I manually pumped a bunch of fuel through the lines. Then we very cautiously took it out on a short trip around the bay. It fired on all eight cylinders without even a hiccup.

More work on Washington injectors

We’re also working this weeko n fitting all the parts on the Timber Heritage Association‘s Washington injectors.

Boats and Parts for Sale

The J.S Polhemus is for sale again, if anyone’s interested in a worthy project. It runs and floats – what more do you want?

If it’s extra engine parts you need, that’s okay – theCaptain Reino‘s DMG8 is being parted out. Contact us for more info if you’re interested.

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2010 Week 19 in Review

OTM Inc started this week cleaning up after M4. What a great show.

More fitting parts

We’re also still working on fitting parts on the Timber Heritage Association fuel injectors. I actually got an email from the machinist we use to have Washington tips made. He said:

“I’ve been working on the numbers pretty hard, I didn’t think you’d like a $300 price for tips. Our biggest hurdle has been fixturing, keeping the concentricity of the sac within .0015″ at that depth isn’t easy. The best I can do is $150.00 each in 12 pc lots with six drilled & six not, 6 drilled comes in at $214. If you have the fixture to hold these while drilling the spray holes (that we can use) knock off $50.00 each.”

Seattle Tug Boat Races

This year’s Seattle Tugboat Races were this Saturday, and although the race results were anticlimactic for the heavy duties, the Maris Pearl won the Tugboat Annie Award. Yay! The Chief finished the race under its own power. Another yay!

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2010 Week 18 in Review

Cleaning parts for the yarder

OTM Inc spent some time this week cleaning parts for the Timber Heritage Association’s diesel yarder injectors. Fitting all the parts is a huge task, but it really makes a huge difference when they go together smoothly.

M4 Event

OTM Inc spent most of its time this week working on M4, an event it sponsors every year. This year’s M4, on May 1, was themed “The Revolution” – very appropriate given the state of the union, economy and the date of the event being May Day.

M4 this year featured art, music and pageantry throughout the entire six hours of the show.

Check out more photos at m4show.com

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2010 Week 17 in Review

Finished on the Maris Pearl

This week, we finished painting the Maris Pearl‘s Enterprise diesel engine and cleaned up so the owner and his family can get under way. It feels good to have the job done.

The Timber Heritage Association sent three more injectors to the shop and so just like the last set, we tore them down and cleaned all the parts made a list of missing or broken parts and started fitting all the parts for interchangeability.

Tug Boat Party

The International Retired Tugboat Association had a very nice gathering this week on Tracy and Giles’ tug the Olmsted in Ballard. It’s a great party where representatives of several old tug boats shared stories and advice.

I’ve been going to the party for years and can’t help but notice the association evolving to more of a family-friendly support group from the can-crushing machoism I remember. I don’t know if it’s the slowed economy or the aging boats we like or the dozens of other maritime pressures affecting the old tugboat community. I admit I am only loosely connected to the IRTA, but I remember more chest-thumping pulling contests and heated arguments about race statistics.

Even without the machoism, though, the IRTA is a wonderful group and I know that old tugboat owners love company.

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2010 Week 10 in Review

We spent this week working on the Lightship project in the office, putting together the Specifications and Requirements documents for the Request for Proposals. We have plenty of specifications and requirements, but the hard part was fitting it into the Department of Transportation’s format. Since the project is funded by a federal grant, we have to use really long templates and try to figure out where all our information goes. I feel like we’re making good progress, but we are two weeks into it and a month behind.

Work continues on the yarder injector

I also spent some time this week on cleaning fitting all the parts of the Washington injectors for the Pacific Yarder in California. Once I got all the parts to fit interchangeably and the packing sized, I lapped the stems to the tips, which were really beat up. I hope they work. I sent examples of the tips I need to a great machinist in Colorado to give an estimate on making some new tips, because I think they’ll need them soon.

Painting on the Maris Pearl

We got the word this week to paint the Enterprise in the Maris Pearl. It’s been a cartoony light green forever, but the owner made a request for a “heavy-duty green” that led us to try out Rustoleum’s dark hunter green. I think it will look nice.

It’ll also let me get a good close look at the engine while I’m prepping.

Pacific Fishermen Shareholders

The annual Pacific Fishermen Shipyard shareholders’ meeting was this week. It went well and as always the sea food was amazing and plentiful. It sounds like the yard is doing well and everyone’s hopeful for a grant to help build new competitive equipment.


Insurance is a big concern for maritime businesses, and it is very expensive and misleading. I have heard insurance requirements misquoted all over the place and to meet my needs, I’ve misrepresented my position, too.

There are so many insurance requirements that they will sometimes overlap or conflict with each other to the point that businesses who can’t afford the effort to sort the laws out just say “It’s not applicable to us” and move on, underinsured or in some cases overinsured.

OTM Inc recently completed an annual audit with the underwriter for our USL&H policy and learned that workers on "pleasure vessels" of any size can be insured by Labor and Industries at a much lower rate (unless it’s in a shipyard). This new law saved many businesses a lot of money but here’s the rub: OTM Inc is required to have USL&H insurance for only a few jobs a year, so we only pay the minimum premium of about $3,000 a year. Now I also have to pay Labor &amp Industries premiums for the time spent on pleasure vessels and museum vessels. I can’t pay any less to USL&H because I am at the minimum so the new law actually costs OTM Inc more.

Well, you can’t please all the people all of the time… all you can do is under-report, argue , read the fine print, and file a claim.

Enterprise Engines for sale!

Russ at American Pipe sent me an email this week; he has six model DSM-6 Enterprise diesels for sale. They’re all identical and according to the mechanic on site, could be run today.

If you want one (and you know you do), contact Russ at (661) 987-5868 or russ@americanpipe.net. Then send OTM Inc an email to let us know what you’re doing with your brand new old engine.

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2010 Week 9 in Review

Work continues on the Arthur Foss

This week, we finished resealing the Arthur Foss‘s number four cylinder head, with lots of help from The Anchor Program.

Every year the Arthur‘s engine gets better and easier to work on. The last five years of classes and some very involved maintenance has gotten all the parts freed up and we’ve acquired more of the tools required to easily accomplish repairs and maintenance. The engine sounds great, too – when running unloaded and slow we still have every cylinder firing.

Preparing for Engineer for a Day

Nothing focuses a group like urgency.

I began work with the Anchor Program on Tuesday to prepare the Arthur Foss the fireboat Duwamish and the Historic Ships Wharf at Lake Union Park for the annual high school Engineer for a Day class on Friday. The class teaches kids from the Ballard Maritime Academy about marine engineering and goes from the Arthur to the Duwamish to the steamer Virginia V to learn about each system. Like Arthur, the class gets a better every year.

With TAP’s help, we got all the engines running on both the fireboat and the Arthur, despite dead batteries, broken fuel lines, and dirt and grime everywhere. We had the main and both generators going on Arthur and both generators and the three mains on the Duwamish all going. It was great!

TAP also helped us get the wharf cleaned up and the fireboat pressure-washed and the tug scrubbed. Thanks for all your help, guys – we’ll have more work days like that soon.

High school on the wharf

On Friday morning, three engineers stood on the Historic Ship Wharf next to three historic ships open and inviting with eight diesel engines warming up for class. We were more prepared to day than the previous 3 high school classes down here.

For the fourth year, our Ballard High School class got to experience a marine engineer’s work and realize that the is the same even when the engine room is wildly different. They visited a reciprocating steam plant, a direct-reversing diesel plant, and a diesel electric plant all in the same day visit. They prepped and started up many engines throughout the day to give them the full experience and demonstrate how to operate the engines.

We did have one setback: the starter in the fireboat’s main generator went out, so the class exercise was a little limited, but part of why we hold the class is to exercise the equipment and try to find problems before they become larger issues. I would call the class a great success and we’ll fix that starter soon.

Work continues on the yarder’s injectors

We kept working on the fuel injectors diesel yarder in Eureka. This is the part of the job that is hard on the hands and fairly boring, since I insist that all the parts thread together interchangeably and entirely. It’s common for parts of these antique diesel engines to distort: the threads stretch, they rust, and tips flare the mating surface. Also, years of using pipe wrenches instead of spanner wrenches and hammers instead of heat beats the parts up further. I machine and lap everything and test every part against every other part to get them all fitting right. The process is tedious but it increases confidence when assembling, since every part fits the way it should.

Work begins on the Lightship No. 83

We dove into the Lightship No. 83 project this week: OTM Inc’s first task as Project Manager is to assemble a plan and supporting documents (like charts and tables) and prepare specifications for when we request bids for the work. It’s not like hammering on the hull or tracing leaks in the plumbing, but it’s really important work and it’s great to finally start on it.

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