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Old 30 May 2007, 14:29   #141
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Surely a killcord should sort this problem out anyway - or am I being niave?
That is the idea. But (1) as an electrical mechanism there is a risk that it will fail - although it tends to be the otherway round and stop the engine when you don't want it! and (2) there was a case recently where the kill cord appears to have not worked as it came away from the person rather than the kill switch and (3) sods law will be that the one time it matters will be the one time that you forget to put it on.
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Old 30 May 2007, 15:05   #142
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That is the idea. But (1) as an electrical mechanism there is a risk that it will fail - although it tends to be the otherway round and stop the engine when you don't want it! and (2) there was a case recently where the kill cord appears to have not worked as it came away from the person rather than the kill switch and (3) sods law will be that the one time it matters will be the one time that you forget to put it on.
I often wonder whether these safety mechanisms don't just add another layer of complexity. On my PB2 course, I kept forgetting about the damn thing and whenever I handed over the controls would very successfully kill the engine...
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Old 30 May 2007, 16:58   #143
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I often wonder whether these safety mechanisms don't just add another layer of complexity.
No, Sarah, I would say its not unnecessary complexity - people do fall overboard, and without the kill cord you seriously risk either being minced or left behind as the boat heads into the sunset...

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On my PB2 course, I kept forgetting about the damn thing and whenever I handed over the controls would very successfully kill the engine...
When you get more experienced you will learn to explain pulling the killcord like that as testing the electrical circuit to make sure it still works!
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Old 30 May 2007, 17:19   #144
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When you get more experienced you will learn to explain pulling the killcord like that as testing the electrical circuit to make sure it still works!
I'll remember that one. With regards the killcord, I am pleased to say that the boat we are looking at has one. I know that they are a good idea, but then you need to make sure you have a second killcord - where it can be found, so that the poor bu**ers left in the boat can start the engine to come and rescue you. I have also heard of a case where the killcord has decided that it doesn't want the engine to work and a friend has to be rescued as they couldn't get the engine started in rough weather.

I will, however, be using ours, but clearly when I prematurely kill the engine by mistake I will be using your excuse... Nice one.
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Old 30 May 2007, 17:28   #145
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I'll remember that one. With regards the killcord, I am pleased to say that the boat we are looking at has one. I know that they are a good idea, but then you need to make sure you have a second killcord - where it can be found, so that the poor bu**ers left in the boat can start the engine to come and rescue you. I have also heard of a case where the killcord has decided that it doesn't want the engine to work and a friend has to be rescued as they couldn't get the engine started in rough weather.

I will, however, be using ours, but clearly when I prematurely kill the engine by mistake I will be using your excuse... Nice one.
Yes a spare kill cord is an important piece of safety kit - but some engines (etec? mercury/mariner?) can be restarted without them. We keep our spare in the bag with flares etc so its always on the boat.

The electonics involved in the kill cord mechanism are really simple and I think quite clever. Basically they short out the ignition circuit so that it can't generate sparks. If you suspect that a problem with the kill cord circuit is preventing the restart of the engine "all" you need to do is disconnect the wiring to open the circuit again (and then drive very carefully!). Might save you needing a tow one day...
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Old 30 May 2007, 17:36   #146
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Yes a spare kill cord is an important piece of safety kit - but some engines (etec? mercury/mariner?) can be restarted without them. We keep our spare in the bag with flares etc so its always on the boat.

The electonics involved in the kill cord mechanism are really simple and I think quite clever. Basically they short out the ignition circuit so that it can't generate sparks. If you suspect that a problem with the kill cord circuit is preventing the restart of the engine "all" you need to do is disconnect the wiring to open the circuit again (and then drive very carefully!). Might save you needing a tow one day...
Good advice. I'll be there one wet and windy day, trying to get on to a wireless network trying to remember what it was you said to do... Perhaps I'll do a dummy run when the weather is good...
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Old 30 May 2007, 18:42   #147
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Originally Posted by Polwart View Post

The electonics involved in the kill cord mechanism are really simple and I think quite clever. Basically they short out the ignition circuit so that it can't generate sparks. If you suspect that a problem with the kill cord circuit is preventing the restart of the engine "all" you need to do is disconnect the wiring to open the circuit again (and then drive very carefully!). Might save you needing a tow one day...
That works fine until you get a killcord mounted in the control box. You have to dismantle the box to disconnect the circuit.

There is another way of doing it (on old tech engines) but I'm not going to post it as it's basically a thieves guide to nicking a moored boat in under 30 seconds.
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Old 31 May 2007, 05:00   #148
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That works fine until you get a killcord mounted in the control box. You have to dismantle the box to disconnect the circuit.

There is another way of doing it (on old tech engines) but I'm not going to post it as it's basically a thieves guide to nicking a moored boat in under 30 seconds.
Sad thing is - they probably know that already...
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Old 31 May 2007, 05:07   #149
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That works fine until you get a killcord mounted in the control box. You have to dismantle the box to disconnect the circuit.

There is another way of doing it (on old tech engines) but I'm not going to post it as it's basically a thieves guide to nicking a moored boat in under 30 seconds.
that was why i put the "all" in quotes. I think (if you know which wire) you can disconnect the wire at the engine end too.
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Old 31 May 2007, 06:12   #150
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that was why i put the "all" in quotes. I think (if you know which wire) you can disconnect the wire at the engine end too.
In theory any engine with an electrically seperate coil under the flywheel to power the ignition circuit can be done like that. The coil that powers ignition has a low enough output not to cause a problem. I doubt it's possible on most four strokes-they have a far larger alternator and everything runs from the battery.
Not sure if you can do it on the new breed of 2 strokes-(pure conjecture-never worked on an Opti but I know Optis need battery power to run the compressor. That would make it more feasable to run everything off the battery. Shorting to kill the engine would be a bit nasty in that case!)
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