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1984 Bayliner Capri 19ft - Volvo Penta 270 I/O - Clunks out after 2 hours of boating

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    1984 Bayliner Capri 19ft - Volvo Penta 270 I/O - Clunks out after 2 hours of boating

    I have a 1984 Bayliner Capri 19 ft with a Volvo Penta 270 I/O. Bought it last Wednesday and took it out for the 1st time yesterday, Sunday. It ran beautifully for 2 hours - Didn't push it too hard with very leisure trolling. Then my 2 daughters wanted to tube - It was just my wife and I in the boat. Just when we started slowly pulling the tube the engine sputtered and shut off. I could not get it started and had to be towed in. The gas gauge showed 3/4 tank and I was told the gauges work. I tried it again after I was towed hoping it was flooded and it still could not catch. I pulled it out of the lake and went to the gas station and it only took 9 gallons for a 30 gallon tank. It started right up after getting gas. The mechanic is perplexed since he can start it just fine a day later. I am thinking it has to be something that is failing when running hot because I can start it anytime now and run it for awhile in a big tub - it starts and runs great. Or is there something odd with the gas tank? The previous owner suggested testing the mechanical fuel pump if that works then he suggested replacing the ignition coil. Has anyone experienced anything like this before? Any suggestions?

    Thanks for the help - Dan

    #2
    Welcocome to BOC.

    I agree with the chance it could be the ignition coil failing when it gets totally heat soaked.

    You have a couple of choices...…….wait until it dies and then check for spark while the engine is still hot (Ouch!)

    …......….Or just go ahead and buy a high quality coil and replace it.

    Then report back as to the behavior.

    Coils go bad all the time and heat/lots of usage can cause them to fail...............and then "heal" when everything has cooled down...……..but the problem never goes away and eventually they fail completely.


    Edit later in the hour:--

    A coil's lifespan is also affected by how hard it works.

    Having a fresh cap and rotor...……...fresh plug wires...…….clean, sharp edged, properly gapped spark plugs...……..all reduce the energy needed to fire a spark plug.
    Present Boat- 2018 VR5 4.5/200hp Mercruiser
    Last Boat- 1998 Capri 1950CL 3.0 Mercruiser

    Comment


      #3
      Thanks vr5200! I appreciate you taking the time. A couple more questions if you have time. 1 what is the best way to check for the spark and I am only finding one coil available online - how do you know if it's high quality? Are there certain brands or better outlets that sell them? Is Youtube my best bet for help on removing old and installing new? I agree I thought about replacing the distributor cap, wires and plugs right away too. Hate to spend the money but I need this running asap.

      Comment


        #4
        When our car breaks down it is easy to get help and there is no chance of drowning.

        When a boat breaks down...………….you know the rest!

        I am not a Volvo/Penta guy but if you can buy a genuine part then that would be the best choice.

        There is an aftermarket company called Sierra that has made parts for many makes and models for years...……..they would also be a decent choice.

        There are some actual marine dealers that either have a website or have a store on Ebay…...that would be fine as a source

        But don't buy marine parts from ebay at half price or from the same person/company that also sells headphones, LED lights, and e-cigarettes!

        Hopefully a VP guy here will speak up on a preferred source for parts for an older VP.

        There are several ways to test for spark.

        You can buy this tool to do it for less than 10 bucks...……… https://www.amazon.com/Lisle-50850-I...14540305&psc=1

        .or you can very gingerly try to place/hold a hooked up spark plug against some bare metal on the engine while someone cranks it and you look for spark (you might get bit by about 25,000 volts for a moment)

        YouTube can be very helpful even if it is a different engine or brand or year of boat.

        The good news is that if you do a "complete tuneup" with all the stuff I mentioned, those parts should last several seasons.

        Here I a pic of the tester from the Amazon link ……………..

        Click image for larger version  Name:	31zeyF9oJmL._AC_.jpg Views:	0 Size:	8.4 KB ID:	590297
        Present Boat- 2018 VR5 4.5/200hp Mercruiser
        Last Boat- 1998 Capri 1950CL 3.0 Mercruiser

        Comment


          #5
          You stated you trolled for 2 hours and as soon as you put the hammer down to pull the kids it died. I’d check the fuel tank vent is clear.
          Dave
          Edmonds, WA
          "THE FIX"
          '93 2556
          Carbureted 383 Vortec-Bravo II 2.0:1 18 1/4x19 P

          The rebuild of my 2556 https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...76?view=thread
          Misc. projects thread
          https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...56-gctid789773

          Comment


            #6
            There might also be some junk in the bottom of the fuel tank?

            The boat is pretty old now......even though we remember when they were new!


            Another method to determine why it dies is to (very carefully and with a fire extinguisher nearby) is get a small container (plastic ketchup bottle) and dribble some fuel in the carb if you don't see any sort of squirt from the accelerator pump when you pump the gas.

            If the engine is being starved of fuel it will start on the gas you dribbled into the carb.


            bunzmon

            You stated you were trolling for a long time. Were you putting around at a low RPM like 600/800/1000 or were you just driving around leisurely at engine speeds of 2000-3000 RPMs?

            Two more thoughts--- you said it started up after getting gas...…
            1) there is always the chance that adding fuel swirled the debris and loosened it from the intake hose in the gas tank (if it had previously been clogged)
            2) I want to make sure you did not try to fire up the engine without a water source......even starting it for 2 seconds while dry on the trailer can ruin the lower unit water pump impeller.

            Regarding builderdude 's comment: If the vent line is clogged the fuel pump will fight against a vacuum building up inside the tank. If this happens again, crack open the gas cap.....listen for a rush of air.....and try to start the engine again.
            Present Boat- 2018 VR5 4.5/200hp Mercruiser
            Last Boat- 1998 Capri 1950CL 3.0 Mercruiser

            Comment


              #7
              Thanks Builderdude and Vr5200 - I should have mentioned I bought the boat last week from someone who owned it for 6 years prior to it being in heated storage for 20 years. The last owner ran it each year he owned it including a few days prior to me getting it. Not sure if the matters much.

              If the fuel tank valve is the chrome valve on the back of the boat near the gas cap then I think it's fairly clear since gas came out of that when I filled it.

              I would say 60% low rpm and then 40% leisure 2000-3000 rpm's. And not sure if it matters but I really did not gun the throttle when the tube was on - I was just going to pull them slow until we all got used it so I started real slow and then it sputtered and died.

              I did and the boat mechanic did start it for at the most 1 second dry. He said that it was okay to do that because the impeller is in the front of engine....not sure what he meant he was in a rush? Hopefully we didn't damage it. The mechanic owns a similar bayliner with similar set-up. I plan on running it in a big water bin for a good 15 minutes when I get home in 20 minutes. If I get a helper I may put it in a lake and run it until it dies again or hopefully it won't! If it dies I will test the fuel pump and see if it's getting a spark. If both check out I will try to pull the gas line out of the tank to see if it has holes or clogged screen. Not sure if all these things are easy or not but I am going to try. The look on my families face when the boat was running for those 2 hours are motivating me - Really my 1st boat at 53 years old but we were looking at something to do as a family for our 4 kids.

              Thanks again!

              Dan

              Comment


                #8
                Sounds like your fuel tank vent is clear if fuel came out when you filled the tank. Your 84 will have a mechanical fuel pump. There will be a main 3/8" fuel line that feeds the carburator via a fuel water separator filter, that should be changed or added if there isn't one. There's also a semi clear tube that runs up to the top of the carburator, this semi clear tube should have NO fuel it it, if it does you'll need a new fuel pump. You'll need to verify if the engine died because of a no fuel issue or a no spark issue. It does sound like you could have an ignition issue regarding the coil so I'd look into that as well as the standard points, condenser, cap & rotor stuff. Keep us posted👍
                Dave
                Edmonds, WA
                "THE FIX"
                '93 2556
                Carbureted 383 Vortec-Bravo II 2.0:1 18 1/4x19 P

                The rebuild of my 2556 https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...76?view=thread
                Misc. projects thread
                https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...56-gctid789773

                Comment


                  #9
                  Glad to hear the boat has been cared for and exercised before you got it.

                  Your gas coming out of the vent tells us it is not clogged with insects or insect nests.

                  Thanks for the RPM info...….it seems like we still need to validate fuel delivery and the presence of a strong spark.

                  The next time the boat won't start, you should be able to look down the carb (after removing the flame arrester) and move the throttle open/closed...open.....and see a squirt of gas inside......if you do not see a squirt, then either the carb has problem or fuel is not getting to it.

                  If you start messing with raw fuel you want to make sure you work safely...….......and if this is not something you feel comfortable doing, then get a professional involved.

                  We don't want you to get hurt or the boat either.

                  I am not experienced with VP and I made an assumption that the flexible impeller is like what Mercruiser has.....I may have been wrong in that assumption. Hopefully a VP person will speak up.

                  It is really cool to hear about your family being amazed at the boating adventure.

                  I hope you are able to fix it and enjoy a great summer.
                  Present Boat- 2018 VR5 4.5/200hp Mercruiser
                  Last Boat- 1998 Capri 1950CL 3.0 Mercruiser

                  Comment


                    #10
                    May be helpful, maybe not.....my 3.0 mercruiser wouldn’t restart after being under a heavy load such as a tube for a period of time. Switched to premium fuel and no issues since. Definitely run either non-ethanol fuel or premium. Adding some Sea Foam to each tank full wouldn’t hurt either. My Volvo 5.0 in my chaparral runs best on 90 non-ethanol fuel. I also add Sea Foam to each fueling as well as a separate fuel enhancer.
                    Lake Hartwell, GA
                    2012 BR 185 - 3.0 TKS
                    1999 Chaparral 233 Sunesta Ltd., 5.0 Volvo
                    1987 SeaRay 300 - Twin 454’s
                    1993 Yamaha Waverunner III VXR
                    1993 Yamaha Waverunner III
                    1995 Yamaha Waverunner III GP
                    1995 Yamaha Waverunner III VXR PRO
                    1996 SeaDoo GTX
                    1999 SeaDoo GTX

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Thanks again guys - This is my 1st experience using a forum like this. Super impressed how helpful everyone is.

                      Ok I chickened out yesterday and did not take the boat out fearing I would get stranded. I have an old trolling motor that if I could have got it working I would have gone out. But's its only 30 lb thrust - which may not even move my 19 ft boat. I think I would need at least a 50 lb thrust?

                      What I did do was get myself familiar with the engine parts a bit. I love how accessible most things are. I have been a YouTube mechanic for my cars but always struggle getting at parts - but love learning about it all and trying if I can. The ignition coil is very accessible which will be helpful if need be and the rubber covers were off the contacts so I slid those back on - maybe that might help. I also noticed that the coil only rests in the holder angled and not tight - not sure if that matters. I ran the motor using a water tub - motor sounded off just a bit like it needed an idle adjustment. Shut it down and looked around and noticed the semi clear tube that runs up to the top of the carburetor was disconnected so I connected that again - it's pulled tight maybe that should be a bit longer so it stays on better - (It didn't look to have fuel in that line) - I fired it up again and it sounded great and fairly quiet even with the cover off the motor. I ran it for about 15 minutes - increased throttle a bit - no issues. I also got familiar with the hoses leading to the gas tank. There are 3. 1 for the vent, 1 to add gas to the tank and 1 to send gas to the engine. Someone mentioned that maybe there is a hole in the line that is inside the tank so when the gas level is low enough to expose the hole the engine would get air and not gas. I thought about disconnecting the hose clamp that connects it but I thought the inside gas line is probably connected to the brass looking fitting that the hose is connected to - I didn't want to try to loosening that yet fearing I might be opening up a can of worms until I research that a bit.

                      So it looks like I will need to either get a trolling motor or ask my wife for my pair of jewels back and get it on the lake asap. I am only 25 minutes from a lake so no excuses. Once it fails - 1st I will check for a spark. If I get a spark that could rule out a failed ignition coil. I am not sure if I will be able to tell a string spark from any spark with no experience doing this but I am going to try. Like one of you said replacing these electrical parts is just like a full tune-up - not entirely wasted $$. I then connect plug spark plug wire back on then disconnect the line out of the fuel pump and have someone turn the key again to see if fuel squirts from the fuel pump. I think that line was a solid line and not a hose. If the pump is working then remove the flame arrestor and see if the gas is squirting inside the carb - if not it could be failed carb. If spark and fuel checks out then I think I need to look at the gas line inside the gas tank. Also motor does not look to have a fuel water separator filter. I think that is a clear cylinder looking piece from other pictures. I can look into that as well.

                      I am not near ethanol free gas but I should be able to find one - we have a big agriculture push here in Wisconsin . The 9 gallons I put in was the highest octane they offered but with 10% ethanol. I will pick up and additive and sea foam to add to the tank just to be sure to eliminate that issue.

                      Also, I have been pricing out coils, distributor caps, wires - boy pricing is all over the board. No idea what is quality or not. Does anyone have an online go to or should I just go local trusted retailer and price them out 1st - if within reason just buy local is usually my way to go. The previous owner gave me some electronic ignition parts to replace the points - I will try to figure that out too. I love trying this stuff but I am super slow at it - does not come naturally to me.

                      I will keep you posted - I have to help 1 of my my daughter's move furniture tonight - 5 hour round trip so I will look at Thursday as an option.

                      Thanks again! Dan

                      Comment


                        #12
                        You have the right attitude and are planning on a methodical approach....that is good.

                        Regarding 10 percent ethanol…..getting pure gas at this point is a nice thing to do, but not a required thing to do...if you can take your boat (by water) to a marina, they will have pure gas (E0) at the pumps.....and it will cost much more than pump gas from your station near your house.

                        That semi clear tube is critical......if too short or damaged it must be replaced.....in case your fuel pump diaphragm ruptures it sends the fuel to the carb instead of into the crankcase where it can explode.....it also will make the engine run bad or stall it out--alerting you to a problem...….that tube should never lay around loose.

                        Regarding the conversion parts for the distributor.....I would wait until you get your boat 100 percent reliable configured the way it is now....no reason to add another variable to the situation
                        Present Boat- 2018 VR5 4.5/200hp Mercruiser
                        Last Boat- 1998 Capri 1950CL 3.0 Mercruiser

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Ok, it runs on the hose or in your case a tub of water, so it sounds like it’s getting fuel and spark at least at lower engine rpm.
                          You can run it for quite a while on the hose at varying rpm ranges to do some testing, get it up to temp and run it for a while to see if the issue presents itself again. I’d say plan on replacing any rubber fuel line from the tank to the fuel pump with new CG approved fuel line, old fuel line falls apart from the inside. While you’re doing that pull the fuel pickup tube from the tank and give it a look. Take a peak inside the fuel tank at that time also, verify there’s no gunk sloshing around in there.
                          A fuel water separator will not be clear, it’ll look like this and every boat should have one IMO. There’s also better quality filters available.
                          Click image for larger version  Name:	551CD2EB-2E57-4E8F-82B9-91272D00BD70.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	360.3 KB ID:	590513
                          Dave
                          Edmonds, WA
                          "THE FIX"
                          '93 2556
                          Carbureted 383 Vortec-Bravo II 2.0:1 18 1/4x19 P

                          The rebuild of my 2556 https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...76?view=thread
                          Misc. projects thread
                          https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...56-gctid789773

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Ok guys I have an update - boy some strange things some good some bad. We took the boat out yesterday - 1st time since the last episode - our 2nd time ever. Remember the only thing I changed on it was added 9 gallons of gas and pushed on the rubber boots that cover the connection to the ignition coil. I did not pull the fuel pick-up tube just yet because someone told me I could be opening up a can of worms with some screen that falls into the tank. I also wasn't sure if knew how to approach it - it looks like a brass elbow type connection. Is the tube connected to that elbow?

                            I decided to wait on that to see It fired up - just like normal started 1st try and sounded great. My thought was if I dies on me I will check for spark and see if gas is getting to the carb 1st. I also wanted to see how long it would run for before it dies - last time was about 2 hours without much high rpms. Now I have a true full tank of gas so let's see if I get more time.

                            We loved it! - drove easy for about 20 minutes then pulled a tube with 2 kids and then 2 teens / 2 adults in the boat. I was full throttle for at least 20 minutes pulling the tube with a few slows downs for turns and such pulling the tube. My speed was about 25-30 and RPMs 4000 I believe. Gas gauge was showing 3/4 to full so that seemed to work as well. Mixed in some leisure strolls along with some high RPM for at least 90 minutes straight. Parked it at the dock for 15 minutes then out again doing the same thing for another 90 minutes. Gas gauge was under 3/4 at this point and engine running strong. Parked it for 30 minutes then added traded 1 child and 1 smaller adult for 1 big adult. Trolled around for 30 minutes then tried to pull a 160 lb adult skiing with 2 bigger adults and 2 slight teens still in the boat. Not enough power to get the adult up plus she hasn't skied in awhile. Not much torque on the engine since we had to keep stopping and bringing the tow rope to the skier to try again. Then tried to pull the other bigger more experienced skier - same thing occurred. Then after about 3.75 hours total the engine died. Now I jumped into my list. Pulled off the engine cover and we noticed the bad news - it looked like oil mixed with water in the bottom of the engine compartment. I stuck my finger in and it definitely felt like oil. And we were stranded. I couldn't see oil dripping anywhere from the engine and I am kicking myself now for not checking the engine oil level by opening the oil cover so I knew what the correct level looked like. I was told that there is not a dipstick so I depended on the gauge and that always seemed fine. Of course the oil gauge reads "0" now with the engine not running. Our thought was let's still go through my trouble shooting list - see if we can determine why it shut down and if we can get it running we can check the oil gauge.

                            The boat was sitting for a good 10 minutes at this point so we tried it again and it would not start. So 1st I pulled the 3rd spark plug wire since it was in a good location from where I was sitting - I put a metal rod from an interchangeable screwdriver handle inside the plug cover - made sure the metal rod was touching the metal bottom of the plug wire and grabbed the outside of the rubber boot of the plug wire pinching the boot and metal rod with my rubber handled pliers. My friend turned the key as I put the end of the metal rod half an inch from the metal coolant cap. The engine almost started but I backed off since I was getting a good jolt through my hands. We sat for another 10 minutes thinking of what to do and trying to explain what happened. I put the plug cover back on and tried it again - it would not start. Next we took off the flame arrestor to see if we could see gas spraying in the carb to determine if the fuel pump was working and maybe rule out an issue with the fuel pick-up tube. Gas was spraying when we tried it again. I also sprayed starting fluid in the carb and tried it again - it would not start. So now everyone nominated me to try the metal rod trick again - if it starts check the oil gauge and if it is fine get it back to the dock with a leisure stroll. Trying to eliminate another Frankenstein experience I decided to add a buffer between my hands and the pliers with the thick tow harness rope. I used the engine block as my metal receiver for the rod. Friend turned the key - my hands got another jolt but the engine started. I collected myself - shook off feelings from the jolt - my friend yelled "It's alive" and I put the plug wire back on. I am sure he was referring to the boat. The engine seemed to work fine but maybe a more tinny sound but definitely not an engine knock sound like my past cars when the engine oil was low.

                            At this moment the boat is at my friend's marina's mechanic an hour from me - I am waiting for some bad news on the engine gasket issue or? I heard the seals on this engine can be very expensive - I hope not.

                            But what the heck? - to me this is so strange since I am rookie at this engine stuff. By playing Dr Frankenstein am I bypassing a bad or failing ignition coil or distributor cap or plug or plug wires or all? Since it ran after it died can I possibly eliminate issues with the fuel pump, carb, and fuel pick-up tube?

                            Did I push the boat too hard to cause a possible gasket issue? I am thinking that this motor could probably get a skier up with just 2 in the boat.

                            Any help you have is always appreciated - Thanks again! Dan

                            Comment


                              #15
                              You’ve verified fuel at the carb but we’re not sure if it’s 100% fuel. Could there be water in the tank? Seems like it was running pretty good up until it died so fuel could be fine.
                              Interment ignition issue is a possibility. This is a point type distributor correct? Have you done anything tune up wise there?
                              Dave
                              Edmonds, WA
                              "THE FIX"
                              '93 2556
                              Carbureted 383 Vortec-Bravo II 2.0:1 18 1/4x19 P

                              The rebuild of my 2556 https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...76?view=thread
                              Misc. projects thread
                              https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...56-gctid789773

                              Comment

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