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OT: Death of a Lucas CAV injection pump
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Go figure, the only diesel that I have not run biodiesel in *yet*, has had a fuel failure.
The cummins 4B on my zoomboom seems to have grown algae in the diesel fuel, it clogged my IP pump and sheered off the shaft. Frown
The new hydraulic head, rotor and 4 new injectors (they were cheap) are on the way and I intend to clean the crud out of my tank before I attempt to rebuild the pump.
Does anybody know of an easy way to break up and remove this terrible sludge from the tank?
Carb cleaner works to clean it out of the IP but that is not practical in the big tank. I was thinking maybe acetone or maybe a mix of methanol and caustic might break it up? Anybody ever dealt with this before?
Here is inside of the tank, it has about 3/4" to 1" of black/brown sludge in it.

There is even some gravel in there lol... Roll Eyes

Here is some of the sludge I scraped out.


Any suggestions here would be appreciated, in the mean time I will continue to scrape out the crap...
Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Here are some shots of my poor IP;
I know it looks like rust but it is not, it is a slimy greasy crud, it washes off pretty well with carb cleaner, biodiesel does not touch it.
\

Here you can see the broken rotor shaft in the hydraulic head, I tried to beat ti out with a drift and 5lb mash with out it moving lol

This the the pumping element where you can see the other end of the broken shaft:


Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'd probably just take a pressure washer or a steamer to that tank. It's obviously open enough to be accessible and to dry out before put back into service, isn't it?

A 4BT could turn a pretty big hydraulic pump. What kind of machine are you running? I'd love an all-manual 4BT for a generator set.

Cheers, John
 
Registered: June 17, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Jon...hope you had a good holiday...

The cummins 4BT is popular and very common south of the border...

Hey...I know 2 guys at Henniger's Diesel here that rebuild injection pumps...they have rebuilt a couple for me...
and the good news is...that they're on the chicken list...lol
 
Location: Ontario | Registered: April 13, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hey JH, that is some nasty looking stuff, I've never seen anything like it, I'd be willing to bet that lacquer thinner would wipe it out, that's what I use to clean my fuge and all things bio related, pour a half gallon in there and brush it around and it'll be good as new, soak the rest of that stuff for a while and then brush it clean.
 
Location: West Michigan | Registered: April 26, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'll bet steam doesn't touch it either. Oh boy. Try household cloudy ammonia cleaner followed by a water blaster. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ammonium_hydroxide This looks like exactly the problem I had, and it is interesting to know it came out of the diesel and not biodiesel.
 
Location: New Zealand | Registered: August 15, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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Thanks for the reply's gentlemen.
Duke, Its running a 1986 Carelift zoomboom forklift, it will lift 5k# to 24'. I got it for a song and use it to move around my totes. It ran great when it ran Roll Eyes
Dan, You made my day man! I already have the rebuild kit and seals for it, when the head and rotor come in I will give you a shout. I got a quote of $1500 minimum for the rebuild here (including the new head that I have now sourced myself), that's when I started gearing up to do it myself lol.
I am still on vacation! Big Grin We spent last week up at the old boys in Nairn, then went camping and hit Santas village on Monday and Wonderland on Tuesday with the rug rats and just got home last night. Tomorrow morning we are heading up to Grand bend till Sunday... phew, I will need a vacation when this is done lol Back to the grind on Monday...
Fab, I will give that a try, though I will have to pick some up. I was thinking since the stuff is biological some lye and methanol or even lye and water may break it up/dissolve it pretty well... Will maybe give that a shot when I get home on Sunday.
Paul, I thought I remembered seeing this stuff before... I did quite a bit of research and am confident it is algae. It is very common in diesel powered boats, apparently it grows at the water diesel interface and then sinks to the bottom of the tank forming the sludge...
I wonder if the spores are in the pump diesel the algae will grow with biodiesel in the mix without water being present.... hmmmm....
I should have had a clue when I gave it a service in the spring, when I changed the fuel filter (looked 20 years old lol) it had a coating of the goo at the filter head, I wrongly assumed it was rust from the tank or whatever, I didn't give it enough thought... Roll Eyes
How did the ammonia work on your sludge?
Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Jon, mine was a gum and it was everywhere - tank, IP, fuel lines, but the injectors still worked. Practically nothing would touch it, but like magic the carb cleaner liquified it instantly and so did the ammonia cleaner which is alkaline. It was tricky cleaning the tank but lots of alternate soaking with the ammonia and pressure wash got most of it out.
 
Location: New Zealand | Registered: August 15, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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OK great I will try some caustic and ammonia and see how it works.
I think my injectors are OK too but I got new ones cheaper than I could get these rebuilt so what the hell eh.
I fired it up to load up my super sucker, it had almost no throttle response but I was short on time and it was raining so I pushed it. It died suddenly at full RPM right when I had the sucker about 6' in the air... Booo... I guess that's when the shaft sheared off...
Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hey Jon...I will drop by there today and get you the chicken and turkey price on that rebuild...lol
Did you acquire all the parts...including the broken shaft?
 
Location: Ontario | Registered: April 13, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thats great Dan, much appreciated!
Yes I got the complete rebuild kit including the extra shaft seal needed for this pump.
The hydraulic head and rotor (the broken shaft) is on route from China, I just checked the tracking number and it hit Cincinnati OH this morning so I should have it early next week, I figure.
Due to the communication barrier I was unable to determine if the new head and rotor comes with the transfer pump head or not, if it doesn't I will have to fart around to get the old one off the existing head (my allen wrench broke off in the set screw) but hopefully it will be complete.
The best price I could get locally for the head was $550 and the china price is $55 lol. Though it could be a piece of junk I am hopeful it will be fine for my light duty usage.
I got the head, rotor and injectors ($25 each) from here: http://www.starsdiesel.net/
It took about 20 emails back and fourth with the sales rep before I would commit and pay via paypal but for the difference in price i figured it was worth the gamble... FWIW I have been happy with the service from them, they even want a follow up when I receive the part which seems rare nowadays.
Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Looks like I have convinced the wife to stay home for the weekend! That gives me time to get this thing cleaned and brew a batch of bio!
I mixed 30 grams of KOH into 1L of warm water on the stir plate and dropped in some of the goo...Nothing, it didnt even fizzle. Next I added about a cup of NaOH to a mix of about 700ml of methanol and 300Ml of water and that seems to be the trick, it dissolves it fairly quickly leaving the solution brown and just bits of rust and clean gravel left in the bottom of the flask...
Next I am going to see if its just the methanol that dissolved it and if the caustic is even needed...
Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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Methanol is one of the components of carb cleaner, along with toluene (toluol) and acetone - about a third each.

Gasoline didn't touch my goo, nor ethanol (methylated spirits).

Are you sure this is algae? I've never seen it before.

Good work with the wife, lol.
 
Location: New Zealand | Registered: August 15, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hey Jon...my guys looked at your pics and determined that you would also need other parts that wouldn't be included in your replacement kit. He mentions the transfer pump liner and blades, a trust washer and metering valve, a throttle shaft and governor link as well as rollers and shoes...
He says it shouldn't be more than $400.
 
Location: Ontario | Registered: April 13, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks Dan!
FWIW, the transfer pump blades and liner look like new, they cleaned right up with carb cleaner. The metering valve also cleaned right up and looks good as does the cam ring, rollers, shoes and all the linkages. Though it looks like rust it is not, it cleans right off leaving clean parts with no rust behind.
I will take some pics of it all cleaned up at some point this weekend and post them.
Paul, I am certain this is algae, or at least some kind of bug/growth as it is growing in the fuel system, the filter would have stopped it if it was just contamination from the tank.

Looks like what I have also, the stuff in the bottom of the tank is mostly black just like in the pic, I think thats the dead algae and the brown is stuff still growing...
Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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sheeee-it what a mess lol
 
Location: New Zealand | Registered: August 15, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You can say that again!!
I tried just methanol and that seems to work somewhat, it dissolves some of the gum but not all. It seems to bleach the algae or whatever it is and separate it from the gum as there is all this suspended white jello looking stuff in the sample where as the stuff with the caustic has nothing suspended, just clear brown liquid with solid bits at the bottom.
So I mixed 16L of methanol with several handfuls of KOH and poured it in, I agitate it every time I walk by and will drain it and see what I have tomorrow. Right now the methanol is an opaque dark brown...
Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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UPDATE:
Its definitely working on something, its generating quite a bit of heat and you can see what looks like soap foam forming on top, the liquid is generating its own agitation too, I think convection is causing it to boil/roll around on its own lol
This will either kill or cure it. Big Grin
Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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Looks like I am making biodiesel lol
I see nice bare metal on the sides now too and don't feel any gum or sludge when I scrape the bottom with a spatula now either... Looking good!
Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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It worked a treat!


I found a couple bullets in there that some nudnik must have tried to shoot through the bottom of the tank, one looks like a .38 and the other looks like a .177 pellet but it is pretty mushroomed to come from an air gun, there may have been more too but they may have come out when I dumped out the water and gravel. This thing must have been parked out in the sticks somewhere where people could tamper with it lol


Cheers,
Jon
 
Location: Wellington County, Ontario Canada | Registered: February 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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