Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Going through the licensing process ? Have queries, comments, or do you need an answer to that obscure exam question ? This is the place to post.
Brian Brooks
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Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby Brian Brooks » Tue Dec 29, 2009 8:41 am

Hi all:

My name is Brian. I am presently writing course syllabi and manuals for a new (and pretty mickey mouse compared to regular marine engineering certificates) SVMO training facility at Hamilton Harbour.

I guess the main positive thing about all of this is that, finally, some kind of technical standard, accompanied by written and oral examinations, has been implemented for people employed in the tour and excursion boat industry. They carry - or put at risk you might say - more than 2 million passengers each year in Canada.

I will be putting the new school together and making it run, hopefully. My employer is Waterfront Trust, a corporation involved in the redevelopment of Hamilton Harbour. I would appreciate any advice I can get as this thing unfolds.

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby The Dieselduck » Tue Dec 29, 2009 10:05 am

Hello Brian,

I am actually at Pier 12 right now in Hamilton, if you want you can drop by and we can chat, perhaps we will find something your looking for.
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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby Brian Brooks » Tue Dec 29, 2009 11:07 am

Hello Martin:

I'd like to meet you but I'm presently in Port Dover. My wife and I spent Christmas with my brother-in-law in Montreal (a marine casualty insurance guy, formerly with HALCO) and we just got home last night. Gregg sent me this link.

I'm originally from Vancouver, a number of years offshore in 18 countries under Transport Canada master certificates, pushing 64 yoa. Now living in Simcoe, managing two passenger vessels in Hamilton. Largest vessel 262 grt. Also chief of training and our new training facility, now under construction at Pier 8.

What I'd really like to do is to post some sample exam questions to give you a feeling for the level of tech competence required. This whole thing is really quite interesting and important from a ship safety standpoint.

Best of the season, and good luck in the new year.

fw,asp (fair winds, all sails pulling).

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby The Dieselduck » Tue Dec 29, 2009 1:39 pm

You can post here, or send them to me by email if you wish. I'm in Hamilton for a few more days, then I will be back for three weeks at the end of January.
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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby Brian Brooks » Tue Dec 29, 2009 2:19 pm

Thanks for the reply, Martin. I'll post a few items in the next couple of weeks if you don't mind, then stay in touch for an "eyeball" in Hamilton at the end of the month. One of our vessels is going into drydock shortly for its quinquennial (Heddle Marine). I'm up to my armpits in that right now. Talk later.

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby Brian Brooks » Thu Dec 31, 2009 10:23 am

SVMO rating may act as chief engineer or watchkeeping engineer on;

Passenger vessels up to 1 499 kW (><2 000 hp) on sheltered waters, limited near coastal Class 2, voyages less than 6 hrs for higher engine power, radio contact with home base, twin engines controlled from bridge.

Cargo vessels up to 2 000 kW (>< 2 700 hp), similar rules as above.

Tugs from 500 grt doing harbour work up to 3 000 kW (><4 000 hp), not carrying passengers, similar rules as above.

Canadian Passenger Vessel Association will attempt to lobby for "dumbed-down" requirements in mid-january, but our hamilton training facility, BCIT and Georgian College will go ahead with original syllabus requirements.

Sample exam questions to come. Comments welcome.

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby Brian Brooks » Thu Jan 07, 2010 2:21 pm

Sample SVMO exam questions. Comments and additional information welcome.

1) High pressure fuel injection lines fitted to diesel engines are often doubled. What is the purpose of doing this?

2) Galvanic corrosion wastage of metals occurs when electrons of one metal are "picked out" by the ions (atoms missing an electron) of another metal which is electrically connected to it, often by being emersed in the same electrically conductive liquid.

3) How could a misaligned shaft be apparent in a vessel while in operation? What are the typical symptoms of a damaged or out-of-balance propeller?

4) How much spare hydraulic oil for the steering system should be stored on board?

Thanks in advance for assistance with these items.

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby The Dieselduck » Fri Jan 08, 2010 12:23 pm

1) High pressure fuel injection lines fitted to diesel engines are often doubled. What is the purpose of doing this?

The purpose is to prevent high pressure fuel (2000-4000 psi), being atomized while escaping a broken fuel line, and making contact with hot engine parts and causing a fire. The shielding will capture and direct the fuel into a small collecting pot, often fitted with an alarm, typically named "fuel pipe breakage" or the likes

2) Galvanic corrosion wastage of metals occurs when electrons of one metal are "picked out" by the ions (atoms missing an electron) of another metal which is electrically connected to it, often by being emersed in the same electrically conductive liquid.

I am not sure where the question is in this one. But it is a good definition of galvanic corrosion. My Jeopardy answer though will be " Well Alex, What is the purpose of a sacrificial anodes?"

3) How could a misaligned shaft be apparent in a vessel while in operation? What are the typical symptoms of a damaged or out-of-balance propeller?

Typically these misalignment will manifest themselves as vibrations. Any vibrations on a vessel is an indication that the system is not in alignment, whether it be the shafting, alternators, or pumps, etc. More severe out of alignment or damage to the propeller will manifest itself as loud noise, akin to someone taking a sledgehammer to the hull. Of course, shaft breakage is not an uncommon result of misaligned shafting being ignored.

4) How much spare hydraulic oil for the steering system should be stored on board?

I don't know this one actually, I guess it would depend on how critical the system is to the safety of the vessel and its mission. We carry a considerable amount 300-400 liters, while any one of our system can take 200 liters. I am not sure if there is actual regulations on this.
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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby Brian Brooks » Fri Jan 08, 2010 1:15 pm

Martin...thanks for the replies.

The "doubled high pressure lines" was most often answered by candidates as "so you can switch one off-line in case of line failure". Fortunately, all recognized the fire hazard involved. I think this question needs to be refined so that the objective is more clear.

Sorry about the galvanic corrosion "statement". It was supposed to be answered true or not true. I also think it is a good description. The new SVMO manual includes a Nobility of Metals scale, and includes lowdown on newer Magnesium sacrificial anodes for use in the Great Lakes, and why.

The hydraulic oil quantity question seems to try to extract the answer... "Enough to refill the system if you have a catastrophic failure", but I'll have to ask Bruno Duguay about that.

Here's a deceptively simple one:

What is the difference between a Pressure and a Vacuum Gauge? The common logic seems to be...One measures pressure on the positve part of the scale while the other measures pressure on the negative part of the same basic scale. What's your take on this?

Brian

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby Brian Brooks » Fri Jan 15, 2010 3:29 am

Here's another question that gives SVMO candidates grief. Better, simpler ways to answer this welcome.

What is meant by the term "valve lash" on a diesel engine?

Also, the compressor rears it's ugly head again. Here's a problem-causing exam question.

Air compressors are arranged to start up with the:

a) Compressor drains open slightly
b) Air relief valve on the receiver open
c) Air receiver drains opened
d) Compressor unloaded

Obviously, b) and c) are throw-aways, however, most condidates have been led to believe that opening the drains is the same thing as the compressor in an unloaded condition (because the machine will not compress air with the drains open). Is there an obvious correct answer, or does this question aslo need revision? I believe d) was supposed to be the correct answer.

Brian

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby The Dieselduck » Sun Jan 17, 2010 12:16 pm

What is meant by the term "valve lash" on a diesel engine?

I am not sure where exactly the "valve lash" term originated, I am sure someone else will have some input on this, but it means the space, clearance, between the rocker arm or valve bridge and the valve's stem, exhaust or intake and sometimes even injectors. Usually this clearance is something like .025 of an inch or the likes, depending of what the manufacturer demands. This clearance is usually done with a cold engine, and is to allow for the thermal expansion of the valve stem when the engine is at operating temperature. Failure to set this probably, will result in a valve staying open, causing incomplete compression = bad running, or close meaning not enough scavenging being done = bad running.

Also, the compressor rears it's ugly head again. Here's a problem-causing exam question.

Air compressors are arranged to start up with the:

a) Compressor drains open slightly
b) Air relief valve on the receiver open
c) Air receiver drains opened
d) Compressor unloaded

Obviously, b) and c) are throw-aways, however, most condidates have been led to believe that opening the drains is the same thing as the compressor in an unloaded condition (because the machine will not compress air with the drains open). Is there an obvious correct answer, or does this question aslo need revision? I believe d) was supposed to be the correct answer.

I understand where you could get confusion, but to me the question is very straight forward, I answered it with out reading your take on it without any second guessing. I am not sure how you would rephrase it to prevent the confusion you mentioned, I will maul it over and see if I can offer any further advice.

Regarding your previous question on pressure gauges...

What is the difference between a Pressure and a Vacuum Gauge? The common logic seems to be...One measures pressure on the positve part of the scale while the other measures pressure on the negative part of the same basic scale. What's your take on this?

My answer is that the markings on the gauge are the only difference, technically both measure pressure on the same scale. I am assuming your are talking about a round type (Bourdon type) gauge and not a u tube manometer. Zero pressure as we know is generally referred to as atmospheric (the most common reading), zero on this gauge (engine oil pressure gauge on your engine) is actually about 15 psi (14.69595 psi - or 101.325 kPa in SI units, or one atmosphere, or 1.01325 bar) above absolute pressure, which is 0 psi. Anything less than atmospheric pressure is considered a vacuum, so the markings on the gauge are marked as negative, but in fact just measure the actual 0-14 psi scale. I hope that is not too confusing, I write this with my two year old on my laps, so I will have to reread later and make sure I am not full of it. eheheh - you can read up for a more technical explanation of vacuum at wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vacuum
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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby JK » Sun Jan 17, 2010 4:16 pm

These are pretty good questions.
Are you doing boiler ones as well? Just re-read the requirements. Probably no boilers.

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby Brian Brooks » Fri Jan 22, 2010 8:24 am

Martin and JK:

Excellent replies on all counts.

Transport Canada has already changed the compressor question. Answer (d) now reads "Compressor unloaded, drains open" and answer (a) has been replaced by a throw-away.

I had to answer some steam questions on my instructor's exam (how to blow a boiler sight glass, draw a steam trap, what is water hammer, etc.) but regular candidates don't. The instructor exam also had questions on larger ship engines, including air starting, fuel processing and more.

Regular candidates do have to answer a number of questions on power train, deck machinery, steering gear and electrical systems (synchronizing generators). This is interesting considering that the old R-Engineer certificate had no written exam at all.

Anybody will be welcome to visist the new instructional centre on Pier 8 in Hamilton once we're up and running. That will be a little while yet.

I'll have more.

Brian

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby JK » Fri Jan 22, 2010 6:01 pm

Bring the questions on Brian.
Martin beats me to the answers, he's closer to the machinery. :mrgreen: and faster on the keyboard.

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Re: Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SVMO)

Postby Brian Brooks » Mon Feb 08, 2010 1:05 pm

There is a 8" diameter Dahl fuel filter/ water separator unit on an 8V71T Detroit Diesel engine No. 2 diesel fuel feed line. The bottom third is comprised of a clear sediment bowl with a ball cock valve under for draining water or crap out of the bowl. Shrouding the bottom half of the bowl is a stainless steel cup.

Clearly, the cup couldn't contain the contents of the sediment bowl if the bowl should crack. The cup is mounted above the ball cock valve so it wouldn't contain leakage from the valve.

What is this cup for?

Brian Brooks


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