Fuel system check (suggestions ?)

Second Star

Member III
Although the color is black or brown rather than red or "other", the crack case vent line can add small amounts of oil into the bilge if it is not connected to a collection bottle or the air filter ...
 

K2MSmith

Sustaining Member
As far as checking the bottom of the tank for leaks, there was a 1X4" board across the edges of the two tanks on my boat, poorly secured, fuel and waste tanks. Remove that board. Try to get your hand in between with a clean white paper towel. If not (probably not), get a skinny yardstick and tape a clean white papertowel securely around the end. Keep it thin and clean. Then, insert in between tanks as a "probe." Any red color extracted? If not, nove it over a bit and try again. Hopefully, no fuel there, especially foreword, inboard corner.
I assume the 1x4 is visible after you remove the board ( about 2’ x 6’) under the berth that is screwed down ? There are also teak trim strips around left right edge that might have to be removed. If there is a leak , I’m wondering if it is cheaper to find a shop that fabricates tanks to just make me a new one with additional inspection hatch, quality fittings etc . Have no idea how much it would cost but I should probably triple my expectations. $1000 -> more like 3 grand :)
 

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
A few years ago I had a new alum. fuel tank fabricated and it was way under $1K. If you have a decent drawing, contact the folks at
I had a baffle installed, two good sized clean out ports, and a new gauge sensor.
Link: https://ericsonyachts.org/ie/threads/diesel-tank-replacement.6303/

And: https://ericsonyachts.org/ie/threads/deck-fill-cap-question.5906/
 

Rocinante33

Contributing Partner
I assume the 1x4 is visible after you remove the board ( about 2’ x 6’) under the berth that is screwed down ? There are also teak trim strips around left right edge that might have to be removed. If there is a leak , I’m wondering if it is cheaper to find a shop that fabricates tanks to just make me a new one with additional inspection hatch, quality fittings etc . Have no idea how much it would cost but I should probably triple my expectations. $1000 -> more like 3 grand :)
Yes, your assumptions are correct. Remove board under settee cushion and trim board. That to board comes out but is a tight fit out the companion way. then you will see the 1X4", I think.

Here in So. Cal, go to Berry Marine Fabrication in Santa Anna for a new tank. Best if you take him the old one but that is not necessarily a requirement. Can work from your dimensions or actually may have the original Ericson Blueprint plans for the tank! He has many of those! It is run by Vic who is a one man shop and does great work at a reasonable price. I hope he hasn't retired! Here is a link with phone & address info. Less than $500 for mine about 6-7 years ago. Included a new fuel sending unit and was beautiful work done.

 

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
One thing to keep in mind is that the OEM tank may or may not be best fitted to the space in the boat. When I replaced our stock tank, I was able to go from 14 gallons to 19 gallons and install the new tank in the same place.
 

LutherSalt

New Member
Are engine photos aggregated somewhere? I need to see, to show my mechanic something similar to what mine used to look like (or should look like!)
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
Welcome aboard, Luther.

You need to fill out your member profile with boat model, year and engine. Such information is necessary for informed responses as there are a lot of Ericson and Olsen models and the year manufactured counts a lot for troubleshooting.

Then click on your name and add the information to your Signature line, so it will appear under each post. Username/Signature.
 

Filkee

Member III
This seems as good a place as any to pile on with my fuel filter frustration. Confession: I have never changed my fuel filter. I think a mechanic did three years ago. At the time he noted that the filter assembly wasn’t attached to anything and supposedly fixed it. And I’ve been whistling past the cemetery and thinking, “Oh, I only run through about half a tank a year…”. But I know I’m on borrowed time and when I went to look for the filter, it was swinging free and hiding behind the air intake. I’m wondering if something has sheared off back there. Any confident mechanics out there with life hacks or words of encouragement? 0CB1A586-52D0-4ABB-8A39-39A29E055F4D.jpeg28F4F9A4-8163-449F-BD38-5C43C5D01C8D.jpeg
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
words of encouragement?

You are on your way to admiration and success in all you attempt.

Words of discouragement:

Jeez Erik, I can't tell nothin' from those pictures. Maybe it's just me. Sure, it's just me. What brand filter assembly is it?

Anyhow, it's hard to find a good piece of wood in the engine bay to screw the mount to, so maybe the screws just fell out. Yeah, better not to have the thing swinging around. And I guess you should change the filter, just because who knows how old it is.

Personally, I don't change fuel filters on a schedule, I just carry spares. If the engine runs, it runs.

There are pix of a typical 32-3 Racor install in previous Message #11, and here are some more: https://ericsonyachts.org/ie/ubs/fuel-system-refit-with-a-racor-500.880/
 

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
I am not sure how to orient my meager knowledge to your pix, but the spin-on factory filter was mounted to the starboard side of our former M25XP. Solid mounting, too. Perhaps your engine has a broken attachment in a casting?
 
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Filkee

Member III
I’m sure if I were a foot shorter and 50# lighter I could just shimmy down through the lazarette and make mincemeat of the problem. There’s a spare spin on board as if perhaps the PO had been in the habit, but I can’t see a reasonable way to get back there.

I keep trying to channel my inner Tania Abie—who needs an engine anyway?
 

jtsai

Member III
You said in the post that the filter was "swinging free and hiding behind the air intake". The spin-on filter (secondary) on M25 is behind the air intake filter on the starboard side of the engine. It does take some effort but it is accessible from the front of the engine, no need to crawl through the lazarette.
 
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Tin Kicker

Sustaining Member
Moderator
Here is what it is supposed to look like and you can see the tapered flange for orientation.
20200215_163738-X3.jpg


It looks to me like yours is not attached to the L bracket on Page 38, Item #6:

It may be that the nuts came off and it may be that the bracket or flange broke. Saying the mechanic found it loose, "fixed it," and here we are again makes me lean toward the thought he didn't use lock washers or captive nuts. Feel around with your hand and hold your phone (with flash on) to the side of the engine to take some more pix.

Words of encouragment:
Should be easy to figure out and cheap to fix.
If needed (doubtful) you could make that L bracket from steel purchased at any Home Depot or Lowes.
 

Kenneth K

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
That L bracket that attaches the filter to the engine is pretty flimsy. Mine would bend significantly when screwing a filter on or off. I wouldn't be surprised if yours cracked.

While messing with it, you might as well move it. The existing location is terrible and makes it very hard to prevent fuel spills during filter changes.

Here was my fix:
 

Filkee

Member III
I concur on the L bracket theory. When I managed to get my hand on it, it felt rough on the edge. So if I take off the air intake I should be able to get at it
 

Tin Kicker

Sustaining Member
Moderator
If you lay on the floor and look with a flashlight through the door under the sink, you should be able to see it.
 
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