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Engine drip tray?


Guest Cattleya

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Is it worth putting a tray under the engine to catch any oil that drips off the engine (or when changing the oil filter)? Currently I have a large bilge that runs under the engine which is very dirty, when water gets in it mixes with oil and makes a mess which then spreads.

Hopefully it will all stay dry now as I have also had a shaft seal fitted which isn't supposed to drip.

Filthy mess from 35 years -

engine-bay.jpg

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A drip tray wouldn’t be a bad idea provided you are able to get at it to clean it or drain it. Another option is to fit a bilge pump in the engine bay, contrary to popular misconception this is acceptable under the BSS rules provided you fit an oil separating filter in the discharge line. At least you have good access to it now by the looks of that shot to give it a good clean and perhaps a new layer of “flowcoat†to make it easy to clean in future.

Here's one example of the filters, others are available.

http://www.oilspillproducts.co.uk/bilge_filters.asp

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Section 9 of the BSS which deals with pollution avoidance, no need for a drip tray provided the bilge area prevents oil spillage from getting to other areas of the boat and will hold the oil capacity of the engine (As must a drip tray if fitted). Obviously not possible with all engine installations but achievable with many and the provision of an oil separating filter to any bilge pumps fitted is a requirement if that arrangement is followed. From that shot it would appear that the 5l or so in a BMC 1.5 and more could be comfortably contained with a small glassed in barrier between the aft stringers.

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I was of the understanding that the BSS stated a drip tray is compulsory and has to be of a certain minimum size too ???

The BSS has been around for years on my current cruising area, the Gt Ouse. The boat passes the BSS as the bilge under the engine acts as a drip tray. The oil can't go any further forward than just past the battery box. But when the bilge has more water it can run into the bilge under the back cabin and make a mess.

Hopefully the bilge will stay dry as the shaft seal is supposed to stop any water getting in.

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Someone nicked your engine? :lol::lol:

:)

It will be back shortly after having a rebuild. At least it's a good chance to clean areas I can't normally reach.

The water in the bilge came out of the engine when it was unplumbed. It has mixed with the layer of smeared oil under the engine to leave a lovely oily puddle. I also have some lovely oily hand prints all over the cockpit, left for free by the mechanic at the boatyard.

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Our bilge under the engine is dammed off from the rest of the bilge, and raised above it, such that no oil etc can escape into the main bilge. After a clean-up, I tend to put oil absorbing pads in there, just to soak up any errant drippings. Makes the whole thing a lot cleaner at oil & fuel filter changes, as after the filters have been changed, you can just dispose of the dirty pads and put new ones in.

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cheersbar:party2: Ive seen them at about £1 each from most boat chandlers.A disposable nappy will soak up all that gunge we cant get under our engine easily but one of these (a cheap pack out of Tescos is only a couple of pounds ) worked under with a long stick soaked up every last drop leaving the bilge realy clean.
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To save buying at swindlery prices the identical thing (oil spill pillows, mats, booms etc) can be bought from most motor factors or places like Hydraulic suppliers, the link I posted above for the filters also has them though only in bulk.

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Mark, what do you mean 'borrow them'? do you wring them out and give 'em back :naughty:

I recon useing the pads is the best idea as it is difficult to get a decent depth of tray in a space like yours Cattleya, and if you have a shallow tray as soon as a bit of water mixes with the oil it will slop into the space under the tray where you cant clean

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