Query about Lifeboat EK general exam

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Arkynav
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Query about Lifeboat EK general exam

Postby Arkynav » Wed Aug 14, 2019 6:22 pm

Hi Everyone.

I came across a question, in the 2nd's EK general exam, and wondering what would be your interpretation.

"Describe the engine used in a lifeboat. What is the cycle of operation. How is it started from cold? How is it reversed"

What is the cycle of operation? as in Diesel cycle/ Compressed Ignition cycle?
There must be more to that, can't be a one-word answer. Is it expected of the candidate to describe the diesel cycle?

or Have I gone off in a completely wrong direction?

Thanks

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JK
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Re: Query about Lifeboat EK general exam

Postby JK » Fri Aug 16, 2019 3:52 am

It’s been a long time since I did my 2nds, but check SOLAS for lifeboat requirement. It will tell you exactly what is required. If you don’t have access I’ll have a look.

Arkynav
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Re: Query about Lifeboat EK general exam

Postby Arkynav » Fri Aug 16, 2019 11:42 am

Thanks JK for the reply.

I did check out SOLAS and got all the regs but there is no mention of cycle of operation. It is stated that it must be compressed Ignition but nothing about cycle.
Do you think they might mean the 'procedure of operation'?

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Big Pete
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Re: Query about Lifeboat EK general exam

Postby Big Pete » Sun Aug 18, 2019 1:43 pm

I would say if they are asking about the cycle of operation they mean the normal Suck squeeze Bang Blow 4 stroke operating cycle.
I don't think it is any more complex than that, sometimes we can look into much deeper meaning in exam questions than was ever intended,
Peter
It is always better to ask a stupid question than to do a stupid thing.

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JK
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Re: Query about Lifeboat EK general exam

Postby JK » Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:03 pm

I think the first one covers it as BP says.


Every lifeboat shall be powered by a compression ignition engine. No engine shall be used for
any lifeboat if its fuel has a flashpoint of 43 °C or less
(closed-cup test). (LSA 4.4.6.1)

The engine shall be capable of operating
when the lifeboat is flooded up to the centreline of the
crankshaft, compare Section 1, C.1.4. (LSA 4.4.6.4)

The engine shall be provided with either:
(LSA 4.4.6.2)
− a manual starting system, or
− a power starting system with two independent
rechargeable energy sources

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Big Pete
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Re: Query about Lifeboat EK general exam

Postby Big Pete » Mon Aug 19, 2019 3:18 pm

With manual starting in cold weather you have plugs in the air manifold to pour oil in to improve sealing of the piston rings, and the oil also reduces the clearance volume, both increase compression ratio hence compression pressure and temperature. A lot of engines also have a lever to put on extra fuel for cold starting, some have to be manually reset when the engine starts, others reset automatically.
Some engine makers also suggested thinning down the crankcase lube oil with 50% gas oil to reduce viscous drag and enable a higher cranking speed. An electric heater in or under the engine also helps!
BP
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JollyJack
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Re: Query about Lifeboat EK general exam

Postby JollyJack » Wed Aug 28, 2019 5:24 pm

On my Port State inspections in the winter, ships were detained regularly because the lifeboat engine wouldn't start. Education is required here, MDO has a cloud point of about -6C, so when it's 20 C below, it ain't gunna go! You have to use #1 diesel in winter, cloud point -20 or below. Same with lub oil, take the Genny 40 weight oil out and use 15/40. The genny oil is like thick grease at cold temperatures. I know, it's cheaper to use the fuel and oil available on the ship, but a detention puts up insurance rates and lowers charter rates. It also costs the Second a bucket of sweat trying to start the bloody engine! Better to spend a few bucks and do it right
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