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Old 15 September 2003, 08:38   #1
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Winter Use

I've done the obligatory search in order not to ask everyone to repeat themselves and have concluded that rather than store my RIB over the winter I'll keep her exactly where she is now and if able get her out on those clear, crisp still days we often enjoy.

However, we will get freezing weather so what precautions should one take to make sure the engine remains in good order ?
To pre-empt the fuel advice I always keep my 120 litre tank full as I don't pay for my petrol (Jono - I can't wait for your remarks on that one).
Of course she won't be out every weekend and at some point may lay hold up on the hard for weeks on end. Does it sound daft to wrap the engine in a hot water tank jacket ?
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Old 15 September 2003, 08:58   #2
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Winter Use

MeMe has a point as i too want to keep using my boat through the winter, mines stored in a garage when not in use, what does the fuel level have to do with anything except condensation?, petrol has a very very low freezing point and cant see it getting that cold on the south coast.

Rat
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Old 16 September 2003, 05:56   #3
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unleaded petrol starts going off in about 1 month, so you would have to put a stabiliser in it.... what about frost damage to the engine? it does happen. With a garage bilge rat should be ok epecially if he employs a heater, i would love to keep my inboard ready for use all year and if anyone can tell me how id be very greatfull however i am not prepared to risk my engine
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Old 16 September 2003, 06:33   #4
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I keep hearing about petrol going off in 30-60 days. I just have a question about this. What happens if petrol goes off. The reason I ask, is that I once had a car that I was doing project work on. It was left in my garage for nearly 2 years. After 2 years it had exactly the same petrol in as it did when I got it and still it started and ran fine.

Will the petrol affect outboard engines much differently than a car engine. I purchased my RIB around 4 months ago. I got a 4HP Mariner backup engine with it. Last weekend I tried it out and it started on the 2nd pull and got me all the way back to shore ( about 1.5 miles ). The petrol had been in there for at least 4 months and possibly longer because I dont know when the previous owner last used it. I had only ever started it when I bought the RIB.
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Old 16 September 2003, 08:56   #5
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I used my rib all through the winter (safety boating) - not had any problems with starting or 'old' fuel.

I tend to buy a gallon of unleaded every couple of weeks, add 2 stroke oil and throw it in the tank to slosh round with the rest.

Has been left for up to 6 weeks under cover only and starts first turn.

I do tend to run the engine dry on the muffs in the garden though, before putting it to bed.
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Old 16 September 2003, 13:30   #6
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The one point I reckon should be made is about the 'freezing' side..... when the engine's run in the water, there's salt going through with the water, which in theory would help prevent stuff freezing inside. However, I always flush my engine out with fresh water after every trip, and with the few really cold days that we had last year, I was concerned about that freezing inside the engine somewhere, expanding, and doing some damage.
If I remember right, the Suzuki manual also talks about this too, but doesn't give any ideas how to prevent it which is really handy
What I found out last year, was after flushing the engine out with fresh water, lifting and dropping it on the tilt a couple of times seemed to clear the whole thing out of water from what I could tell. The first tilt, there would be a load of water come out the 'piddling hole' and exhaust, the second tilt there'd be a bit more, and the third, there'd be no more water leaving the engine. I assume from this that there are a few traps around the block where water can build up (probably not very clever), but by lifting and lowering engine it seems to get rid of it.
Finally, I'd leave the engine down so any water left 'should' drain out the bottom - I guess that if there's dribbles left, they could freeze, but as long as the best part of it's gone, it shouldn't do damage.

I'd be interested to hear if anyone else does anything similar to the above, or am I just being picky with the engine again?

Apart from covering over in winter like I do all the time anyway, I can't see anything else you have to do really. I ran my boat throughout December onwards after picking it up from new last year and didn't have any problems at all.

-Alex
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Old 16 September 2003, 13:50   #7
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Live in the IoM....very few nights below zero here!
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Old 16 September 2003, 15:09   #8
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Winter ribbing

Dont worry about water expanding , unless your engine stores its own cooling water, if it does u can of course use antifreeze, think of how cold the inlets get on a motor as petrol is whizzing in at a rate of knots causing evapouration similar to a fridge system.We had a petrol leak this year and it turned the seawater on the deck to ice around the leak.It would even in freezing conditions be difficult to freeze any residual saltwater in an engine anyway.As for fuel, condensation risk is reduced dramactically in cold conditions, and what about the water that is in the fuel when u buy it, this is why it is important to use water seperators filters especially for fuel injection.Fuel is stored for long peroids on ships in tanks and often before we buy it , it has been in storage.The only thing u need to be on top of is good quality batteries, in the cold the electrolite behaves differently and u need to check the quality of the electrolite with a hydrometer to ensure correct specific gravity, cold starts are tough on batteries make sure your battery is good for winter, no need to wrap engines up, just ribbers. gavin
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Old 16 September 2003, 15:56   #9
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ok MeMe, you haven't mentioned the free fuel before! I'm down at the weekend, you can take me to your garage. Jahno will give you some earache over this well kept secret. lol
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Old 16 September 2003, 16:18   #10
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How to do during the winter

After swedish experience from 0 degrees to -30 degrees we use special spirits so the water can burn in the engine.
If you put some carburator spirit in the tank it will bind the water and the water/carburator spirit will burn very nicely in the plugs, if you are afraid of rust etc in the engine you just put a special plug that is conected to a bottle with glycol, you put the plug were the cooling water comes in (cheap to buy) and run the engine with glycol, when the boat is on land offcourse. So if you put the carburator spirit before using the boat and the glycol after using the boat during the winter you will have a nice working engine during the winter without taking any damages.

Good luck

Regards
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