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Cat 3412 1997 problems

Discussion in 'Engines' started by jim schorn, Jul 14, 2023.

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  1. jim schorn

    jim schorn New Member

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    Hey guys Thanks in advance for any advice. Was getting ready to change oil today. Tried starting port motor to get oil warm before draining it. Starter turned the motor but barely. Oil pushed up the dip stick about 5 inches past full. The starter or the engine sounded horrible likes it’s under a lot of pressure. It was the 1st time I tried to start it this season. Sat 5 months since last start. Starboard motor popped right off.
    things to know
    1. Very slow turning starter/engine
    2. Sounds like it’s under a lot of pressure
    3. High oil on stick
    4. Oil is very dirty
    5. Not turning fast enough to start

    ‘thanks
  2. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Sounds like you have water in there. Pretty much the only thing that can explain the high oil level besides diesel but you d have smelled the diesel in the oil
  3. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Oil full of fuel or water.
    Both bad news.

    I hate offering a new member bad news.
    Especially on one of our favorite engines.
    Please don't keep turning the engine over. Bent rods come from this.
  4. jim schorn

    jim schorn New Member

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    thanks for response. Couple things.
    1. Before I tried starting oil level on stick was low so no intrusion I don’t believe
    2. Took cap off and antifreeze is completely full
    3. Boat ran no problems last November for 240 mile run.
    thoughts?
    Could starter be bad?
  5. ranger58sb

    ranger58sb Senior member

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    Batteries?

    If you find it safe to turn over...

    Check battery voltage? If you have a parallel switch, check with that too? Load test battery?

    -Chris
  6. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    First thing I would do is drain the oil to see what you have. That will tell you if you have too much and what you have in there.

    Sure it could be the starter wiring or the batteries but that doesn’t explain the high level on the dipstick
    Capt Ralph likes this.
  7. DOCKMASTER

    DOCKMASTER Senior Member

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    Start with the simple stuff: what’s the voltage on your port starting batteries? What does your battery charger show? Did you try your emergency parallel crossover to give the batteries a boost from the stbd side? What does the oil on the dipstick look like? Is it milky? Is it black? Any smell of diesel? When you say the reading on the dip stick is high, how long did you let motor sit after trying to start it before checking oil level? Assume you wiped off dipstick then checked oil again? Sorry, not trying to insult you with simple questions and issues but you didn’t mention any of these so just verifying before everyone jumps to big problems.
  8. gcsi

    gcsi Member

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    When evaluating mechanical issues I always try to keep Known Fiasco Potential (KFp) in mind. In this instance, the KFp couldn’t be much higher. Do the most conservative thing by draining and evaluating the oil before taking any other steps. If the oil change decision is wrong, your only down side is completing an oil change with cold oil…. Seems like a no-brainer
  9. jim schorn

    jim schorn New Member

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    So I drained some oil off today. Oil looked old but was just oil. No fuel or water in it. I pulled the valve cover and everything on this bank was rusty. Not sure what happened. Only thing I can think of is last trip my raw water pump sprung a slow leak and was hitting the belt which made a mist in the engine compartment. Then I pretty much parked it. I’m so disappointed. I know enough mechanical to get myself in trouble but not enough to do this type of repair.
  10. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Do you have any evidence of a raw water leak near the water pump or elsewhere in the area? Isn’t the raw water pump gear driven on the 3412?

    water being sprayed around still doesn’t explain rust inside the valve cover on one bank or the higher oil level. Speaking of which, is it still high? Are you sure the oil is pure and not emulsified / milky?

    you should sent an oil sample for analysis before doing anything

    next step would be to pull the injector and scope the combustion chambers.
  11. 993RSR

    993RSR Senior Member

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    is the dip stick tube rusty inside?
    did you notice crank case pressure while cranking?
    have you had the after coolers off in the last 2 years? (pressure testing can weaken them)
  12. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    The gear driven Sheerweed raw water pump is isolated from the engine.
    Any water leak on the drive shaft would leak out as any oil leak would leak out thru the same dribble hole.
    If a pile of water was spraying over Walker Air-Seps, some water may drain into the sump.

    Witch valve cover, there could be 6, 4 or 2 of them pending the model?
    Valve cover with an open vent?
  13. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Yes, any leak would come out of the weep hole but it is unlikely to be sprayed by the belt as if it was a belt driven pump
  14. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Belt driven alternator and/or aux device?
    Raw water pump and weep hole would be to the port side of the engine. Other stuff would be low or to stb.
    Hummmm..
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2023
  15. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    What did the coolant recovery bottle level look like??
    Low or dirty?
  16. jim schorn

    jim schorn New Member

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    the stick had some sludge like material on it but not rusty. Wiped right off easily.
  17. jim schorn

    jim schorn New Member

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    the bottle was fine. The liquid clean and pink
  18. jim schorn

    jim schorn New Member

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    belt driven alternator. Water pump to part above belt for alternator
  19. jim schorn

    jim schorn New Member

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    Here’s a video under valve cover
    i believe there 4 covers. It was right forward one. The spray was not heavy more like a mist
  20. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Lets review;
    Oil level was down. Now it is up. Oil is not yellow.
    Oil seems old and some sludge.
    Light rust under one of the valve covers.
    Was this a vented valve cover???
    Expansion tank and coolant recovery tank are at normal filled levels.
    A water mist may have landed on the engine, lil drip from the Sherweed pump onto the alternator belt. Don't forget to spray the alternator down with WD40 and let dry.
    Air filters should not have received a heavy amount of water????

    Engine will not starter turn over.
    Have you tried baring the engine over? Harder to turn that the other engine??

    I'm still thinking fuel washing the liners.
    You may not smell the fuel in the oil. And it won't take much.
    You can send the oil to a lab.