fogging Honda 50 and winterizing Mac X

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Bilgemaster
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Re: fogging Honda 50 and winterizing Mac X

Post by Bilgemaster » Sun Nov 06, 2016 10:33 pm

Phil M wrote:The Honda 50 is more prone to having the carburetor Jets clogging up than other engines and therefore winterizing is more important on a Honda 50. :(
Fortunately, squaring away and tucking in a Honda 50 hp outboard for a winter snooze is about as easy as I imagine it must get. The manual is very straightforward and freely available online for all model years by serial number at http://marine.honda.com/support/manuals/models/BF50. My specific 2001 BF50A manual (serial numbers BAZS-3210001 through 3219999) is found at http://cdn.powerequipment.honda.com/mar ... ZW4604.pdf, but really there seems very little if any substantive difference among them.

Each of the Honda 50's three carbs has an easy-to-get-at screw to drain their little fuel reservoir bowls, and they take only a few seconds to drain, so that the fuel in them doesn't evaporate over time, leaving a cloggy gummy residue--made truly super-craptastic if there's even a hint of ethanol in the fuel. I will personally only run ethanol-free "real 100% gasoline" treated with Sta-Bil 360 Marine and just a dash of Marvel Mystery Oil (say, about 4 ounces per 10 gallons) in my outboard and other small engines, like lawn mowers and generators, that may ever sit around more than a couple-few weeks unstarted. Ethanol is just the kiss of death for that, even treated with Sta-Bil. I'll grudgingly use the blended 10% ethanol spew in my daily drivers that burn it off quickly, but make a special fuel run down to rural Fauquier County (about an hour south of here) every now and then for the good stuff for those motors I feel I need to pamper. If you're wondering where you might find ethanol-free gasoline, check out the definitive list of stations that sell pure, ethanol-free gasoline in the U.S. and Canada maintained by the good folks over at Pure-Gas.org. I guess it's a good thing that Vermont isn't first batter up in the presidential party primaries instead of Iowa, or maybe the rest of us would all be forced to pump maple syrup derivatives into our tanks instead of corn-based ethanol.
Pop Quiz! Guess which carb bowl was using ethanol-blend fuel:

Image

And yes, I do have a "Say NO to Ethanol" bumpersticker on the tow beast. Why do you ask? But enough ranting...

As for changing the engine oil and lower unit drive fluid, this is also pretty straightforward, and described quite well enough in the manual. The oil drain plug access cover held in with a single screw, once removed doubles as a perfect little drain tray spout which directs the flow neatly and handily to your waiting bucket. I spilled nary a drop. I would only offer the following tip for a slightly trickier mess-free oil filter change, which I picked up from some other forum:

Having first let the oil drain from the main drain plug a good long while with the unit trimmed fully down (prop close to ground) and having temporarily replaced the drain plug finger-tight and moved the bucket with the used oil out of harm's way and tipping range, once you get the filter just loose enough to turn easily by hand, trim up the unit (prop away from ground) and turn the engine so that the filter is pointing downward (threaded side of the filter up). Now take a regular flexible plastic cup of about the right size and place it over the filter so that the lip of the cup goes all the way up to and touches the engine block. Squeeze the cup and turn to remove the filter. Any oil that spills will go into the cup. So will the filter once it spins free. All nice and tidy. I had tucked a few paper towels strategically under and around the filter area, but since I didn't lose a single drop with this Plastic Cup Technique, I ended up using them later to just sort of wipe down this and that around the engine, as I treated it to a little silicon spray here and there. Just for the hull of it, once I had the new filter on (in my case a Napa Gold 1365, though a "cardboard-instead-of-steel-construction" Fram PH6017A might also do, as well as an OEM Honda 15400-PFB-014), and before putting in the new oil, I trimmed the engine back down and pulled that main drain plug again and got maybe another ounce or two of used oil out that the trimming up and down and moving side to side must have coaxed out of the motor's nooks and crannies. After buttoning back up the drain plug and cover, just add 2½ quarts (American) of 10W30, and she's all honey gold for next season.

I've only had my 26X in the drink beginning this year, and have already drained and refilled the drive unit twice this season--the second time just to size up if there may be any problems down there once she'd had a few hours on her There weren't, so I might pull just the bottom drain plug for a looksee at a few slow drips. If milky or watery, I'll drain and refill. If not, then not. I'll pull the spark plugs for a looksee and maybe fog up the cylinders while I'm in there anyhow some weekend soon. I might even run a quick cylinder compression test. Then again, I might not.

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seahouse
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Re: fogging Honda 50 and winterizing Mac X

Post by seahouse » Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:27 pm

paul I wrote:
seahouse wrote:If you run the engine until it stops from lack of fuel (after disconnecting the fuel hose) – have you found that you still need to drain the carb bowls? At least one of them should be empty, and the remaining ones nearly so, and if you’ve added a Sta-bil type product ahead of time, you should be good also.
Tomfoolery wrote:Yes, I get some gas out of all three of them. A little out of the bottom, and more from the other two, and not just a few drops, either. So I treat the 6 gallon gas can with Stabil, shake it up, run the engine to warm it up (garden hose for cooling water), disconnect the fuel line, run it out of gas, then (after changing the oil and filter) drain the float bowls. .
I've never drained the bowls of my :macx: . So after reading this thread, and having to change the fuel filter anyway, I decided to have a look at it.

Some background. What I typically do, and already completed a couple of weeks ago, is: run the engine with water hose attached (all water intakes taped). I empty the gas tanks leaving only a few quarts of gas in one of the tanks. I tip the tank upright until the motor runs out of gas. By tipping the tank upright the motor uses all the old fuel in the primary line and can only suck air into the system. I then treat the remaining gas with a cleaner/stabilizer (this year I used Seafoam). Pump the bulb and restart the engine, this time using the treated gas. Once it has a steady idle again, I shut the motor down and go change the oil. This allows the cleaner to marinate in the carbs for a while. When I'm ready I restart the motor and let everything stabilize again. Then I again tip up the tank to empty the primary fuel line of treated fuel until the motor shuts down.

So today I located the carb drain lines. Two of the three had worked loose and were just entwined in the other stuff. The topmost one was still attached. I plugged them all back in and one by one, opened the drain screws. I got nothing out of any of them. Not a drop. I backed out the drain screws half way at least.

I did get a major surprise when I got to the fuel filter though. I think its spent 3 seasons in there now, and there were chunks of what seem like crystalized brown rocks in it. Some of the were dime sized. Apparently the fuel filter never completely drains.

Tomfoolery wrote:I changed the gear lube three times this summer. At the first change, I found a lot of water in it (I didn't change it when I winterized the first time). I changed it again a month later, and found only a small trace of water. The third time, when winterizing last month, I found no water, and in fact, have the drain oil sitting in my shop in a bottle, just to give it time to settle out. Still no signs of water or dirt. I suspect the water got in when the Honda marine shop changed the impeller for me after doing the engine survey. They didn't change the lube, and didn't ask me if they should (I would have said yes, but hadn't thought of it). I'm not seeing any signs of water now, but it's something I'll monitor very closely.
I had the seals replaced three seasons back. I experienced the same thing the first two years after that. It looked like a milkyness to the oil, certainly not what the oil looked like when new, but no where near as bad as it was prior to the seal replacement. At the start of this last season I needed to replace the impeller. I noticed the impeller housing has a fitting in the bottom of it. This fitting press fits with an O-ring into a socket on the lower unit. When I removed the impeller housing I realized this was another place water could seep into the lower unit oil. I replaced the O-ring when I replaced the impeller. I also replaced the gear lube. When I replaced the gear lube again at the end of the season, there was no milky oil to be found at all.

I also left the water contaminated oil to sit. After many weeks, it never separated.


Glad to hear your solution and that you got that solved Paul.

When water first enters the gearcase (being less dense than the oil) it will fall to the bottom where the drain screw is located and be discovered by its removal on inspection. In time it will (particularly when helped with the agitation, heat and friction of churning gears) mix with the oil and somewhat dissolve in it forming the milky emulsion “mousse”. Once the oil is saturated with the water any excess water will remain at the bottom to again be seen if the drain screw is removed for inspection.

Of course, the mouse is not good for the bearings (less lubrication, accelerated corrosion) or any other friction surfaces in the gearcase.

I write this because I realize that I might have inadvertently implied in a post above that in time the two would separate, but since the mousse has been decanted so no free water is present, the water remaining is bound to the oil and will not normally settle out on its own. I would expect though, that heating the emulsion for a period of time (temp relative to 100C + the boiling point of water) will drive the water off and you will be left with the water-free oil. (Not that I would suggest re-using it after that, lol).

- B. :wink:

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Bilgemaster
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Re: fogging Honda 50 and winterizing Mac X

Post by Bilgemaster » Mon Nov 07, 2016 7:59 am

On the topic of water ingress past the seal into the gear oil, this happens to be one of the weak points that bears watching in one of my other nautical vehicles, my Amphicar. If a quick peek into the engine compartment at what we web-toed motorists call the "water tranny" (No, we're not actually talking about RuPaul in a fabulous green sequined mermaid scuba suit) reveals a frothy beige-brown mess erupting out of the fill hole up top, then there'll be no cruising that day. You see, the water mixes up with the gear oil and really "froths up" and expands. Accordingly, with a Honda outboard I would imagine that if one removed just that topmost oil level screw and a whole bunch of snot drained out, you'd have a problem with water getting into your drive...probably through a raggedy seal.

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Re: fogging Honda 50 and winterizing Mac X

Post by Tomfoolery » Mon Nov 07, 2016 8:28 am

paul I wrote:I had the seals replaced three seasons back. I experienced the same thing the first two years after that. It looked like a milkyness to the oil, certainly not what the oil looked like when new, but no where near as bad as it was prior to the seal replacement. At the start of this last season I needed to replace the impeller. I noticed the impeller housing has a fitting in the bottom of it. This fitting press fits with an O-ring into a socket on the lower unit. When I removed the impeller housing I realized this was another place water could seep into the lower unit oil. I replaced the O-ring when I replaced the impeller. I also replaced the gear lube. When I replaced the gear lube again at the end of the season, there was no milky oil to be found at all.
Did you also replace the two seals under that housing that has the o-ring? Or are those the seals you had replaced three years prior?

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Re: fogging Honda 50 and winterizing Mac X

Post by paul I » Mon Nov 07, 2016 12:14 pm

Tomfoolery wrote:
paul I wrote:I had the seals replaced three seasons back. I experienced the same thing the first two years after that. It looked like a milkyness to the oil, certainly not what the oil looked like when new, but no where near as bad as it was prior to the seal replacement. At the start of this last season I needed to replace the impeller. I noticed the impeller housing has a fitting in the bottom of it. This fitting press fits with an O-ring into a socket on the lower unit. When I removed the impeller housing I realized this was another place water could seep into the lower unit oil. I replaced the O-ring when I replaced the impeller. I also replaced the gear lube. When I replaced the gear lube again at the end of the season, there was no milky oil to be found at all.
Did you also replace the two seals under that housing that has the o-ring? Or are those the seals you had replaced three years prior?
I didn't replace 2 additional seals. But I cant really say. I have to assume when I took the lower unit to the Honda dealer and asked for a seal replacement they were replaced? No? What seals do they replace when they do a standard seal replacement job?

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Re: fogging Honda 50 and winterizing Mac X

Post by Tomfoolery » Mon Nov 07, 2016 12:44 pm

paul I wrote:
Tomfoolery wrote:
paul I wrote:I had the seals replaced three seasons back. I experienced the same thing the first two years after that. It looked like a milkyness to the oil, certainly not what the oil looked like when new, but no where near as bad as it was prior to the seal replacement. At the start of this last season I needed to replace the impeller. I noticed the impeller housing has a fitting in the bottom of it. This fitting press fits with an O-ring into a socket on the lower unit. When I removed the impeller housing I realized this was another place water could seep into the lower unit oil. I replaced the O-ring when I replaced the impeller. I also replaced the gear lube. When I replaced the gear lube again at the end of the season, there was no milky oil to be found at all.
Did you also replace the two seals under that housing that has the o-ring? Or are those the seals you had replaced three years prior?
I didn't replace 2 additional seals. But I cant really say. I have to assume when I took the lower unit to the Honda dealer and asked for a seal replacement they were replaced? No? What seals do they replace when they do a standard seal replacement job?
I couldn't say. There are two on the vertical input shaft, and two on the horizontal propeller shaft, and I believe they face away from each other, in pairs - one side to keep water out, the other to keep oil in. The top ones are easy. The prop shaft seals, not so easy.

But if the gear oil is staying clear, then it's all good in the 'hood. At least, that's how I justify mine. The last thing I want to attempt is replacing those prop shaft seals. :P

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