Encounters At Sea
Certificate of Merit
IMPROPER SUPPLY OF ‘O’ RINGS LEADING TO STOPPAGE AND AGONY
Mohammed Riazullah C/E
The vessel had a practice of overhauling the units on monthly basis, at a convenient port. After one such overhaul, when full away was given, it was observed that, on increasing speed and when the scavenge pressure was about 1.2 bar, heavy amount of air and fuel oil found leaking from the stuffing box leak off pipe.
Vessel was anchored in a safe place. It was suspected that stuffing box sealing rings may not be providing proper sealing, stuffing box sealing rings were replaced from the spares. Engine was tried out and again when the speed was increased, the same problem repeated.The engine was again stopped, and the ‘o’ rings were taken out and compared with original spares. Found the newly supplied ‘o’ rings were of slightly lesser dia than the old original rings.
The spare part pocket had the original manufacturer’s seal, but even then the dia was found to be slightly small. The ‘o’ ring was renewed with the unused old original rings, the engine started and found the problem did not occur.Even though the spare parts were supplied by the manufacturer himself, this drawback put the operational personnel into heavy tension and tiredness. The spare part numbers and the drawings were matching with that of the manual.
Lesson learnt :
It is always better to check the ‘o’ rings before assembling for their proper dimensions.