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FResh Water Cooling

 
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rickforth
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Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 9:36 am    Post subject: FResh Water Cooling Reply with quote

I am purchasing a 26' 1978 flybridge sedan that has a new Mercruiser 5.7
It is not FWC and I will be using it exclusively in salt water. This engine has about 3 hours of use and is new. Should I consider adding the FWC, or a fresh water flush? Input would be appreciated.
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merwin10
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Joined: 11 Oct 2006
Posts: 440
Location: Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts

PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Most definately add FWC kit right up to the risers - Kits come in two forms one just for the engine and the other does the exhaust manifolds also leaving only the risers in contact with Raw water - Being that the engine is new I would do it ASAP - If you have run it in Salt water run some Salt's Away thru it bofore doing the conversion - that will remove and neturalize and salt remaining - You just flush good with fresh water then treat with Salt's Away - then do the conversion - THe cost of the conversion is about $3000.00 but over time it will pay for itself - I have done several engines FWC conversions and they have worked out well -

I am not a big fan of fresh water flush systems - Two reasons first and foremost is that you are introducing another place to cause leaks and a leak in the raw water cooling system will sink the boat - The more connections you have the more likely something is going to go wrong - Second - is the chance to flood the cylinders with water is far greater if your not careful - You see the water is under pressure and if it gets by the pump while the engine is not running there is nothing to stop it from backing up the riser and go into the exhaust manifold any exhaust valve that is open at the time will flood the cylinder with the pressured water - Of course if you are careful and turn the water on after the engine is running and shut the water off before the engine is shut off the chances are far less -

If I was doing it I would install a start switch in the engine compartment along with temperature and oil pressure gauges - So that I could control the process from the engine compartment - you don't want a hot engine to run long without water cooling it - Furthermore the raw water impellers don't like it very much - The incoming water acts a cooler agent and a lubrication for the impeller rubber on metal with out water causes wear!

IMHO - yes go with the FWC and Forget the Fresh wate flushing system -

Hope this helps -

Mike - Very Happy
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changeofpace
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Joined: 12 Oct 2006
Posts: 599
Location: New Haven CT - Long Island Sound

PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 11:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Mike, the closed full cooling is far better and worth the extra cost. It also make winterizing the engine much easier as you only have to run the antifreeze through a smaller area. I use a bucket hooked to the raw water pump, fill the bucket with antifreeze start the engine and the pump sends the antifreeze through the risers and out the exhaust.
I have water alarms now hooked to my engines in addition to the temp gages. I didnt install them initially when I first put the new engines in. as luck would have it, I had a small leak from one of the plugs in the manifold that would only leak when the engine was hot and the system was pressurized. The temp gage showed me that one engine was running around 180F, the other was running over 200F. I checked the engine and sure enough as soon as I opened the hatch I could smell the antifreeze as it would hit the manifold and vaporized into steam.
My plug was factory installed and wasnt tightened all the way, so much for Barr Marine quality control!
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leokow
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Joined: 12 Oct 2006
Posts: 415
Location: Osborn Island, NJ.(Little Egg Harbor)

PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Three for three. .I agree with both Mike and Terry, my previous boat was fresh water cooled and once I had it straightened out I wouldn't want it any other way. The boat I just got is raw water cooled and the engines are 3 years old, they have the perko flusher installed on each engine which makes things a little easier,but as Mike said more places for leaks. When they were starting up the boat to test it for me they turned the marina water on full force without opening the the sea water ball valve to relieve the extra pressure, bingo, one 3 year old perko flusher(made of some type of plastic)now in 3 pieces and no water into yhe engines,all over them but not in them. Thankfully they saw the problem before they tried to start them. Had to do a direct hose on the port engine from the ball cock to the pump to bring the boat home, then to flush out the port engine I had to disconnect the hose from the ballcock and put the fresh water line into it to flush. What a pain. I will change the system over before next season. The only down side to the fresh water cooling is the engines run at about 160 degrees vs around 130 for raw water cooled. So when there's a problem it doesn't take long to get the heat up, but as long as you change the risers every 4 or 5 years you will very rarely have a problem.With brand new engines,you would be foolish not to protect them.
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merwin10
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Joined: 11 Oct 2006
Posts: 440
Location: Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts

PostPosted: Sat Oct 28, 2006 6:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now just think if you where in 3 to 4 footers crusing along and that broke - first the engine would have probabla seized form over heating - then you would have rush down from the flybridge pulled open the engine hatch - and seen water about a foot deep and growing - OF couse the source of the water would have been under water so it would not be obvious as to where it was coming from and now would be a good time to panic - Call in a MAYDAY - because if you don't stop it in the 3-4 footer it won't be long before the scuppers are under and you know what that means - Shocked Exclamation Arrow

This is the exact senario as to why I don't like to many things attached to the raw water intake - and if there is something attached it needs to be brass or bronze - NO PLASTICS - Reenforced hoses -

Enough Said -

Mike - Very Happy
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Last edited by merwin10 on Sun Oct 29, 2006 8:53 pm; edited 1 time in total
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rebait
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Joined: 27 Oct 2006
Posts: 482
Location: Bayville, N.J.

PostPosted: Sat Oct 28, 2006 11:05 pm    Post subject: FWC Conversion Reply with quote

Do not hesitate. Saltwater is your engines enemy. My other boat is an 18' center console that I purchased new in 1980. When I changed the exhaust baffle (exhaust manifold) in 1992 I could not believe the clogged water passages with salt & corrosion. This engine was flushed after each trip. In 2002 the engine started to run hot. this engine was well maintained. In the Spring of 2003 I pulled the baffle and found quite a few clogged passages. I replaced the engine and flush it with salt away. I know 23 seasons is a lot to ask for an outboard, but this 115 Mercury was almost trouble free. The new 125 Merc has been a great engine with outstanding fuel economy. My 270 Crusader is FWC. It is a 1978, ready for a rebuild and so far it is corrosion free. Morale of the story: install the FWC cooling system. John
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leokow
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Joined: 12 Oct 2006
Posts: 415
Location: Osborn Island, NJ.(Little Egg Harbor)

PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 1:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You guys don't have to convince me, just find me a pair of knees I can borrow for about a month and I'll straighten out this danged boat!!!LOL
Thanks ,fellas, there really isn't any thing to compare regarding the two cooling systems, if anyone has any doubts just go an get a pot of sea water and boil it away , what's left is what is inside all your engines water jackets everytime you use the boat,and rarely does it ever come out, and that green stuff isn't spinach it's sea weed strained thru the strainer from the water pressure. It make a real good stop leak in your water passages ,right where you don't want it to be. Later everyone...Leo Very Happy
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