How was the problem solved

Derek Roger
8th June 2011, 00:03
On the mv Lucigen we had a problem that the bilges could not be pumped from the aft / stern gland area in the engine room . The pump was fine and gave a good suction . I had checked the strum box on more than one occasion and it was clear . We back flushed the bilge line from the fire pump and it was clear .
It was still impossible to pump the bilge .

How did we solve it and what was the fix ?????????????????

Derek

GlennysF
8th June 2011, 05:51
My husband had a similar problem on one of his ships.

He reckoned something was down there acting like a foot valve on the bilge suction. They poked around with broom handles and found a flat piece of wood that must have got underneath the bilge suction pipe and the pressure of the water was enough to float it up and blank the line off.

Once they'd found it, it floated to the surface and they fished it out. Problem solved.

Derek Roger
8th June 2011, 14:41
Well done Glennys F very similar but not quite the same . The problem was to do with an electrician .

Don Matheson
8th June 2011, 15:12
Derek, dont tell us an electrician was floating in the bilges and blocking the pump suction.

Don

Derek Roger
8th June 2011, 19:28
Derek, dont tell us an electrician was floating in the bilges and blocking the pump suction.

Don

No I wish he was ; he was in this case the 3rd Eng whom I was on watch with . His claim to fame was that he ( ex RN ) was in charge of the laundry of an aircraft carrier . Could not fit a lid to a biscit tin ; only use as electrician was that he could " lamp up "

Almost 100 views on the thread and so far the engineers have failed with only an engineers wife getting the hang of the problem ; come on lads dont let the Lady beat you to it ( although she has already given a big clue )

John Dryden
8th June 2011, 19:57
Surely the 3rd hadn,t washed his boiler suit in the strum box!

borderreiver
8th June 2011, 20:01
non return valve fitted back to front

kewl dude
8th June 2011, 20:15
Pump running backwards

Greg Hayden

Don Matheson
8th June 2011, 20:23
I thinik Greg has the answer, pump running backwards.

Don

Derek Roger
8th June 2011, 20:30
Nope pump was a steam up and downer lots of suction on the gauge .

Derek Roger
8th June 2011, 20:30
non return valve fitted back to front

Nope valves were all OK .

Don Matheson
8th June 2011, 20:50
Steam up and downer:- Could something have been on the bottom of the bilge which floated up when suction applied and sank slowly when suction off. Something like plastic?
Have had a problem with a sea suction which had about a mile of plastic sheeting.

Don

Not worried about Glennys beating us, I believe it was her ticket anyway. "From another post I remember her husband took her to another ship to look at the lovliest engine ever." I rest my case!!!!!!!!!!!

GlennysF
8th June 2011, 20:51
Was the bilge alarm wired up the wrong way?

GlennysF
8th June 2011, 20:52
(Can anyone believe how boring the conversations in our house can get?)

joebuckham
8th June 2011, 21:30
the bilge paint coating was loose and on suction was forming a diaphragm, or the pipe was loose and on suction was sucking on to the plating.

spongebob
8th June 2011, 21:33
Quote;
(Can anyone believe how boring the conversations in our house can get?)
http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/images/buttons/quote.gif (http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/newreply.php?do=newreply&p=517338)

GlennysF what a wonderful woman you must be, If I mentioned bilge pumps eyes would glaze over.

Bob

uisdean mor
8th June 2011, 21:55
Since electrician quoted then perhaps discarded lamp - partly holed maybe - possibly with bayonet or screw or whatever in the pipe and the lamp acting as a valve between pipe bottom and striker plate? Lamp would need to be some size or possibly small bilge pipe say 2 inch?
Rgds
Uisdean

uisdean mor
8th June 2011, 21:57
I have seen a torch cause havoc in a small bilge ?
Uisdean

GlennysF
8th June 2011, 22:11
Quote;

GlennysF what a wonderful woman you must be, If I mentioned bilge pumps eyes would glaze over.

Bob

Hah! When my husband left the sea he became a surveyor. Now, not only can I talk about bilge pumps I can talk about cranes, lifts, various pressure vessels including boilers, and assorted welding procedures.

Strangely, he doesn't talk about the history of education (a subject I taught at University) or Internet marketing (my current job).

I think I'm a gem. Not sure he shares that perception though.

Glennys

Reef Knot
8th June 2011, 22:51
I think I'm a gem. Not sure he shares that perception though.

GlennysYou're a woman who LISTENS (Whaaa) to her husband?! You're a gem! (Thumb)

Reef Knot
8th June 2011, 23:03
Ah! C'mon! I know the answer fer shor!

There was no water in the bilge and the lekkie got the flak because the "engineer" was a w@anker who thought the lekkie must have wired the level controller upside down/inside out/whatever before even checking the said water level!! (Check his palms. He's a w@nker fer shor!!) So there! QED. Simple!

You just cannot trust engineers! (Thumb)

Derek Roger
8th June 2011, 23:30
Steam up and downer:- Could something have been on the bottom of the bilge which floated up when suction applied and sank slowly when suction off. Something like plastic?
Have had a problem with a sea suction which had about a mile of plastic sheeting.

Don

Not worried about Glennys beating us, I believe it was her ticket anyway. "From another post I remember her husband took her to another ship to look at the lovliest engine ever." I rest my case!!!!!!!!!!!

Getting close Don ; keep going you are just about there .

Derek Roger
8th June 2011, 23:33
Was the bilge alarm wired up the wrong way?

No bilge alarm . You are so close Glennys . Think ; electrician and foot valve ?
Derek

eldersuk
8th June 2011, 23:41
Bilge alarm float had fallen off and was acting as a foot valve.

Derek

GlennysF
9th June 2011, 00:01
He's put the foot valve on upside down so it's acting as a non-return valve in the wrong direction.

GlennysF
9th June 2011, 00:03
Buggerlugs (husband) tells me I don't know what I'm talking about if I think an old dunger with steam auxiliaries would have a bilge alarm on it.

Derek Roger
9th June 2011, 01:59
Buggerlugs (husband) tells me I don't know what I'm talking about if I think an old dunger with steam auxiliaries would have a bilge alarm on it.

Glennys F ; You are the only one so far who has a clue . Your first post is so close ; forget the piece of wood and think electrician .

GlennysF
9th June 2011, 06:17
He dropped a lightbulb down the bilge.

Fix: Smash the lightbulb.

jmcg
9th June 2011, 11:39
Oh, I hope some engineer can solve this one quickly, otherwise you might just get an "expert" 4 ringer with an inflated ego from another department swoop in!

BW

J(Gleam)(Gleam)

joebuckham
9th June 2011, 13:08
so we go through all the things of a size to block a bilge line that a lecky would carry with him when in pursuit of his job then we fix by removing said blockage and bar lecky from the engine room. first thing that springs to mind, 'the lid he could'nt fit on a biscuit tin' then secondly a large roll of insulation tape(Thumb)

chadburn
9th June 2011, 13:44
She was built I see in 1962 by Smith's (although I was not there at the time) when valve's were on the changeover, from manual to either air/hyd or a combination of all three on some ship's. Was that type of v/v involved, manual or automatic somewhere in the system?

Derek Roger
9th June 2011, 13:52
He dropped a lightbulb down the bilge.

Fix: Smash the lightbulb.

Correct ; high 5,s for Glennys . Promoted to Chief of all the engineers .
The Chief Eng Ian May decided there was somthing odd and I was elected to go bilge diving ; managed to find the bulb stuck perfectly under the pipe but could not remove it ; smashed it with a chipping hammer . Despite many showers my skin was still giving off lub oil for a day or more causing some irritation to the messman who looked after my bedding laundry .
Ian gave me a case of beer which was dispatched forthwith by the engineers .

Happy days Derek

chadburn
9th June 2011, 14:08
So the system was on a mud box or Rose plate, as a strum box to me is what it say's, a metal box with holes drilled(perforated) in it which fit's on the very end of the pipe where a bulb would not be able to block it.

Don Matheson
9th June 2011, 14:55
I knew Glennys would get it right, as I said a while ago I am sure it is her ticket so her Knowledge is super. Well done Glennys.

By the way all you guys that think she is a GEM,did you notice she called her other half "Buggerlugs". This is a woman to watch!

Don

uisdean mor
9th June 2011, 15:54
Check post 17 Derek. off course defer to my senior officer in Glennys .
Rgds
Uisdean

Boatman25
9th June 2011, 16:10
How did the bulb get passed the strum box which you said you had checked

uisdean mor
9th June 2011, 16:56
Pipe suction in the bilge - strum box on the bilge top - lamp wedged between striker plate and pipe bottom- enough room to allow outflow but as soon as suction applied seals the end of the pipe. as in post #18 I had a similar problem with a floating (sic) torch which surprise surprise nobody actually owned.
Rgds
Uisdean

Reef Knot
9th June 2011, 19:11
Hey look guys, it's only fair that we give Glennys a chance. She is new to these parts and we don't want to scare her off now, do we?

Mmmm... That's what what I thought - gentlemen every one! (Thumb)

Derek Roger
9th June 2011, 20:38
Check post 17 Derek. off course defer to my senior officer in Glennys .
Rgds
Uisdean

My sincere regrets Hugh in having missed your very correct observation in # 17 . Glenneys however did get the idea of a foot valve effect / piece of wood or whatever so we can leave her as Chief for now ( But I suspect she is relying quite a bit on b__ger lugs ) She shall be tested again .

Cheers Derek

GlennysF
9th June 2011, 20:45
Hey look guys, it's only fair that we give Glennys a chance. She is new to these parts and we don't want to scare her off now, do we?

Mmmm... That's what what I thought - gentlemen every one! (Thumb)

You really don't think a few engineers are going to scare me off, do you? Wait until you know me better. I've been known to reduce Chief Engineers to tears (well, one anyway when he wakes up and thinks "Christ, what have I done").

GlennysF
9th June 2011, 20:54
Seriously, Derek, I wouldn't have got the answer myself except that I did remember Buggerlugs telling me of their problem with the wood, so I guessed it would be something similar.

The hints about thinking electrician were what made me think of the lightbulb. One went off in my head, so to speak.

Derek Roger
9th June 2011, 20:54
How did the bulb get passed the strum box which you said you had checked

Uisdean Mor has covered the answer very well . The Bilge suction valve ( always a non return) was mounted between the bilge main and the strum box which is always at floor plate level so it can be cleaned withn ease . The actual suction pipe which I recollect was more than 2 inch ( 2 in is the minimum diameter allowed for a bilge suction by class and reg body rules )
The suction pipe was a vertical pipe from the bottom of the strum to the bilge well . Normal ship building practice would have the distance between the bottom of pipe and ships side to be 2 inches . I suspect that it was either incorrectly installed or more likley just corroded / eroded with constant use over the years to the point where the bulb was able to lodge inverted in the pipe . Even a back flush with the fire line was not enough to clear of break it .


Regards Derek

chadburn
10th June 2011, 10:43
Not wanting to be pedantic but a Mud Box/Filter Box is not the same as a Strum Box (in regard's to their design and piping up) which is what bothered me when I read the question when it was first posted in regard's to the Engineroom's system(s).

Reef Knot
10th June 2011, 14:02
Not wanting to be pedantic but a Mud Box/Filter Box is not the same as a Strum Box (in regard's to their design and piping up) which is what bothered me when I read the question when it was first posted in regard's to the Engineroom's system(s).Wazzermarrer Chadburn? You run out of electricity? Computer's battery go flat?

Please finish this post for the benefit of us dumb-R'ess. What IS the difference?

Boatman25
10th June 2011, 19:16
A strum box in my time 1958 and 60s Mr Reef Knot was a square steel box with perforations (holes for the benefit of Mr Reef Knot), in all six sides. The end of the bilge suction pipe was enclosed within the box through a hinged lid, the hinged lid allowed the box to be removed for cleaning purposes. The strum box prevented anything blocking the end of the suction pipe acting just like a filter. So therefore a bulb or piece of wood could not have got anywhere near the end of the suction pipe. The use of the title ' strum box ' was therefore misleading in the question as the electrician would have had to open the box and put the bulb in it deliberately

From my experience a ' mud box ' is often built within a pipe system rather than at its ends and the end of the pipe does not have a filter or strum box on it. I had experiences of cleaning bilges with some with strum boxes and some with mud boxes which you had to lift plates in the bottom of the hold to get to

uisdean mor
10th June 2011, 19:23
I guess it is a question of scale - and therefore usage. A strum box as described would be worse than useless in a reasonbaly sized ships bilge well. By the time the water/oil/mystery fluid had reached the plates the strum box would actually be a danger to the ship as no one would be able to get near it for cleaning. In my limited experience the strum boxes are located as close as practically possible to the tank top prior to the pipe being led into the well- usually at 90degrees. Terminology may be different but I did understand what was being asked.
Rgds
Uisdean

Reef Knot
10th June 2011, 20:47
It seems to me that you guys are having a difference of opinion regarding terminology but, thanks, it's all very informative. I do now understand. (Hey! C'mon! That was pretty quick for me!) ;)

uisdean mor
10th June 2011, 21:35
Hey Reef Knot ,
Do not put yourself down so much - we might have some fun yet.
There could be more developed here - IF we all wanted to be pedantic - such as we never had bulbs at sea, they grow in Holland don't you know, but we did have lamps. Not worth bothering about really but I await the indignation with some glee.
Rgds
Uisdean.

Reef Knot
11th June 2011, 07:03
Hey Reef Knot ,
Do not put yourself down so much - we might have some fun yet.
There could be more developed here - IF we all wanted to be pedantic - such as we never had bulbs at sea, they grow in Holland don't you know, but we did have lamps. Not worth bothering about really but I await the indignation with some glee.
Rgds
Uisdean.Actually Uisdean, I was just wondering why they didn't call in a proper mechanic to do the job. Problem would have taken about 2 minutes to identify and a few more to repair. Said mechanic would have know the names of the bits as well! Now, if they had taken the pipe off and held it up (like a spyglass) they would have seen the light at the end of the tunnel and REALLY had something to talk about! (Thumb)

chadburn
11th June 2011, 17:54
Full explanation given by Boatman(Thumb), the only thing I would add is that Strum Boxes are "usually" fitted throughout a vessel EXCEPT in the Engine Room (which was why I was a bit puzzled) where the Bilge Mud Box/ Inline Filter Box is fitted in a position where it is easily accessable for the filter cover and element to be removed for cleaning instead of Bilge Diving in not ideal condition's as in water/oil/ mystery fluid's to clear a Strum Box. Ship designer's did/do sometime's think of the health of Engineer's. We don't want anybody ordering the wrong equipment for their vessel, do we?
Lamp's or Bulb's make's no matter but the light appear's to be fading.

jimthehat
11th June 2011, 19:27
He's put the foot valve on upside down so it's acting as a non-return valve in the wrong direction.

Dont know what the problem was(thats why we employed engineers),
but I can bet they sent an apprentice into the bilges to clean out all that rotting grain.

jim

tom.d
21st November 2011, 20:32
had similar prob.with a ballast line boat kept falling over to port with all vaves shut downtight after putting a spade blank in sw lin the valve chest's were opened and low and behold one trainer in one a part boiler suit in another and to
cap it all a part flat hat in the sw valve . after cargo of palm kernals was discharged the other trainer was found in the ballast line and the rest of the flat hat was jammed under a bilge valve

chadburn
22nd November 2011, 11:18
Any Engineer taking a new vessel from her Builder's will have experienced Tom's "finding's",it was alway's remarkable in regard's to the item's that had been stowed in the Ballast/ Bilge line's and forgotten about by the worker's at the Yard and a bally nuisance too!!

david freeman
22nd November 2011, 16:13
Question how old was the mighty vessel. One can check the bilge main for leaks and blockages? Did you retrieve the strum box and complete down bilge pipe? Was it sound or was it old and cruddy with thistlebond patches? Did it let in air when the bilge was reduced to a certain level/ Maybe some one has asked this forgive my question if I have not read every reply. Some of the old steelwork if not galvanised presented such problems in ships over some 5 -8 years old.

Ian J. Huckin
23rd November 2011, 16:09
Any Engineer taking a new vessel from her Builder's will have experienced Tom's "finding's",it was alway's remarkable in regard's to the item's that had been stowed in the Ballast/ Bilge line's and forgotten about by the worker's at the Yard and a bally nuisance too!!

True, very tue. Having done 9 builds, trials and maiden voyages it is unbelievable how much is missed. Well, not particularly true with Japanese builds but the British were terrible.

A little off topic but.....tried to trace a phenominal banging and clattering in the accomodation on the maiden voyage (North Atlantic) of one Pallion built ship. Spent days looking for it as it was p!$$1*@ people off by keeping them awake at all hours of the day and night. Eventually traced it to one of the main engine exhuast fan trunkings which, when opened, exposed scaffolding from the very bottom right up to the top!!!!!!!!

chadburn
23rd November 2011, 16:19
The awkward one was when a cut down scaffold plank which someone had been using as his prized seat (to protect him from piles no doubt) got jammed in one of the Main Ballast Butterfly V/V's which was in the confined space's of the dreaded Duct Keel.