Detroit Diesel Generators

 The large hatch to the engine room is how we plan to get the generator sets in and out.

The large hatch to the engine room is how we plan to get the generator sets in and out.

During the 1950s Fir was refit with two 671 Detroit Diesel generators producing 100 KW of AC electricity at 440 volts, 3 phase, 60 cycle. Our plan is to rebuild one unit, and use the other for parts.  In place of the "parts" generator will be two new 16KW generators running in parallel.  See our Generator page for more detail.

We started working with our Detroit Diesels in the Fall of 2017.  A shipyard could simply cut a hole in the side of the boat, and using a forklift remove the old generator.  We don't have this luxury.  With each generator set weighing close to 5,000 lbs we will need to disassemble each unit, bring the parts to the second deck of the engine room, then hire a crane to manipulate the parts up through an opening designed for ventilation.  We will reassemble the motor to seal it, and move our "parts" generator to the old buoy deck so it can be lowered to the hold.

We chose to keep generator #1. For the following reasons: First, because it was recently fitted with a new cylinder head.  Second, and possibly most important, generator #2 will be easier to move.

There were no plans for an extensive rebuild, However, all wear parts external to the engine were replaced, along with the injectors, seawater pump, fresh water pump, blower, starter, fuel pump, all hoses and gaskets.  The strainer, and heat exchanger were cleaned, and all the local gauges replaced with appropriate liquid filled industrial gauges. We replaced the lubricants, all the filters, painted the engine, polished the brass water pipes, and reapplied original decals.  

Detroit Diesels are known for their reliability. With the above modifications, a complete set of replacement parts from generator #2, we expect this generator to service FIr well into the future.  This generator that will probably not run more than a couple of hours a month, and is not our primary system but we feel it is a great backup.

 The two Detroit Diesel generators on the port side of the lower level of the engine room. Generator #1 is in the foreground.

The two Detroit Diesel generators on the port side of the lower level of the engine room. Generator #1 is in the foreground.

 Generator #1 after refit.  

Generator #1 after refit.  

 Joe disassembling generator #2.

Joe disassembling generator #2.

 The engine block for generator #2 has been moved to the center of the engine room. The catwalk has been cut out and we are moving it up to deck #2. The block probably weighs 1,000 lbs

The engine block for generator #2 has been moved to the center of the engine room. The catwalk has been cut out and we are moving it up to deck #2. The block probably weighs 1,000 lbs

 Lifting the Detroit Diesel. It has to be "walked" down the corridor then up to the second floor of the engine room.

Lifting the Detroit Diesel. It has to be "walked" down the corridor then up to the second floor of the engine room.

Melton McGuire

The Lighthouse Project LLC