Previous in Forum: Aluminum Alloys 3105 and 3004   Next in Forum: Fedding
Close
Close
Close
22 comments
Active Contributor

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 14

Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/05/2008 12:54 PM

Any chemists reading this?

I have a marine diesel engine that has a small amount of salt water emulsifed oil "stuck" around various internal "pockets"

Is there a "solvent" that I can formulate, that will dilute the emulsification readily? That will break down the salt water goo?

I have tried various petroleum based solvents and "flooded' the engine /crankcase with minimal success. These petrol based "degreasers" clean out some Oil but don't have much effect on the emulsified goo!

__________________
><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'>
Login to Reply
Interested in this discussion?
You can "subscribe" to this discussion to be notified of new comments.
Click on the Subscribe menu at the top of the page.

Comments rated to be Good Answers:

These comments received enough positive ratings to make them "good answers".

Comments rated to be "almost" Good Answers:

Check out these comments that don't yet have enough votes to be "official" good answers and, if you agree with them, rate them!
Commentator

Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Connecticut shoreline
Posts: 67
Good Answers: 5
#1

Re: Solvent to Dissolve emulsified Oil

03/05/2008 1:06 PM

Dawn dishwash soap.

Login to Reply
Active Contributor

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 14
#6
In reply to #1

Re: Solvent to Dissolve emulsified Oil

03/06/2008 2:16 PM

Yes I did try Dawn. was not very effective over several applications

__________________
><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'>
Login to Reply
Guru
United Kingdom - Member - Indeterminate Engineering Fields - Control Engineering - New Member

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: In the bothy, 7 chains down the line from Dodman's Lane level crossing, in the nation formerly known as Great Britain. Kettle's on.
Posts: 29990
Good Answers: 811
#2

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/06/2008 3:52 AM

"Swarfega"?

"Gunk"?

(usual disclaimer)

__________________
"Did you get my e-mail?" - "The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place" - George Bernard Shaw, 1856
Login to Reply
Associate

Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Beaumaris, Ynys Mon
Posts: 54
#3

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/06/2008 5:40 AM

Can I suggest steam cleaning?

Login to Reply
Active Contributor

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 14
#4

Re: Formula to break molecular bind orSolvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil or

03/06/2008 11:54 AM

The Engine is not apart so "steam cleaning "is not an option. Commercial "solvents" not particularly adequete as they need to be sprayed (impossibly) inside the engine. Dawn has a small effect, "Oven Cleaner " a bit better! "Scrubbing Bubbles" bathroom cleaner a bit better. So far the effect I seek has not materialzed

I am looking for a formula to break down the molecular binding of the salty, areated water with the oil in a form that I can make up by the gallon and flood and drain the engine repeatedly until the bulk of goo is "MELTED/ DISSOLVED into less cohesive molocules! and breaks its adherance to the metal "bulk" of the engine components.

Sincerely...

__________________
><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'>
Login to Reply
3
Power-User

Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 441
Good Answers: 20
#5
In reply to #4

Re: Formula to break molecular bind orSolvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil or

03/06/2008 1:23 PM

Here is a way to de-rust and clean any conductive part or assembly using Boraxo Laundry detergent. Borax will ionize under the stress of electrical current and add to the electrolysis which does the cleaning.

1. fill the crankcase with water and about a third cup of Twenty Mule Team Boraxo Laundry detergent.

2. Devise an anode which will plunge into the soapy mixture without touching anything conductive.

3. Connect your battery charger negative to the crankcase and the positive to the anode.

The current will flow from the negatively charged material taking rust, grease and contaminants depositing all onto the positive anode. The process will clean any conductive surface and is used by museums to remove corrosion and embedded debris from metallic artifacts.

Try cleaning an old part first just to give yourself confidence in using this museum relic restoration system. Get a conductive tub or bucket and suspend the part completely submerged into the solution. Hook up your battery charger (+ to the bucket & - to the part) and watch the suds form as the part is cleaned by the current flow. The suds will become dirty as the process continues.

I've cleaned many parts and also the interiors of cases using this system.

You engine case will become the cathode (-) and the crud will be collected on the anode (+). You will need to clean the anode often because of it's small surface area. Be sure to turn off the battery charger when doing the cleaning. If it is possible to gain access to the engine's interior by removing a part or component such as a fuel pump then I suggest doing so to accelerate the cleaning process by using a larger anode.

__________________
intellectuals solve problems, geniuses prevent them ~ Einstein
Login to Reply Good Answer (Score 3)
Guru
United Kingdom - Member - Olde Member!! Engineering Fields - Instrumentation Engineering - New Member

Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Dunstable, England
Posts: 2821
Good Answers: 45
#9
In reply to #5

Re: Formula to break molecular bind orSolvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil or

03/07/2008 9:22 AM

Now that is an extremely good answer!!

John.

__________________
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing - Googling is far worse!
Login to Reply
Power-User

Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Posts: 313
Good Answers: 7
#10
In reply to #5

Re: Formula to break molecular bind orSolvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil or

03/07/2008 11:46 AM

I understand the concept of electrolytic cleaning to remove corrosion, and I know that an aqueous borax solution helps to emulsify oil, but can you offer an explanation as to why grease/organics would migrate to the anode?

Bill Morrow

__________________
Bill Morrow
Login to Reply
Power-User

Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 441
Good Answers: 20
#12
In reply to #10

Re: Formula to break molecular bind orSolvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil or

03/07/2008 3:08 PM

Hi Bill, the stuff on top just gets blown off by the vigorous action of the current flow. Try it and you'll see the turbulence 12 volts and around two amps can cause in a conductive medium.

When the biological crud, grease and salt deposits overlay the rust and corrosion underneath the whole mess is driven off the surface by the current flow. The first time I saw this in operation was in a museum where they had recovered shipwecked items which were encrusted with organic material from crustaceon like organisms.

My friend manually cleaned an area on the artifact large enough to attach a large alligator clip. She then put the item into a plastic tub containing the cathode and the solution. I was surprised to see the borax soap solution immediately begin to foam and become dirty with residue.

We went to lunch and later she turned off the battery charger and extracted the item, rinsed it off, and I was amazed at the cleaned surface. Only a few areas remained to be cleaned so she returned it to the tank for another period of electrolysis.

I think this system will clear out most of the scale and organic substances. The oil filter will gather up the remains of the loosened debris before it can clog the bearings if the engine has a properly designed oil filtration system..

Anyway its worth a try for the few dollars being spent of 20 Mule Team detergent. If it fails to remove most of the crud then the left over detergent can be used to wash those dirty overalls after taking the engine apart LOL.

__________________
intellectuals solve problems, geniuses prevent them ~ Einstein
Login to Reply Score 1 for Good Answer
Power-User

Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Posts: 313
Good Answers: 7
#13
In reply to #12

Re: Formula to break molecular bind orSolvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil or

03/07/2008 4:20 PM

Hmm, interesting. Thanks for the response.

Bill Morrow

__________________
Bill Morrow
Login to Reply
Active Contributor

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 14
#16
In reply to #12

Re: Formula to break molecular bind orSolvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil or

03/08/2008 3:47 PM

I would be eager to try this but the access opportunities are extremely limited.

Also, what material(s) constitute a "good" or acceptable anode? When I think of anode my first option is zinc as in sacrificial anode but that does not seem like proper use in your description. Thanks for the input.

__________________
><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'>
Login to Reply
Power-User

Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 441
Good Answers: 20
#20
In reply to #16

Re: Formula to break molecular bind orSolvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil or

03/10/2008 12:34 PM

A good anode would be made of stainless steel. This is what they use in the museum and I have used a stainless steel sink. The residue just wipes or rinses off.

As I suggested in a previous post, try to get the largest anode into the crankcase without short circuiting the battery charger. The size of the anode will determine the length of time required to remove the debris from the interior of the engine.

I have seen steel wool used as an anode especially when used in a rusty or cylinder such as an antique gun barrel. I suppose one could use the same technique to remove rust from an engine cylinder also.

The steel wool is wrapped in an insulating cloth which is soaked in the borax detergent solution and then slid into the gun barrel. The reason for using steel wool is it's phenomenal surface area for collecting residue.

__________________
intellectuals solve problems, geniuses prevent them ~ Einstein
Login to Reply
Active Contributor

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 14
#22
In reply to #20

Re: Formula to break molecular bind orSolvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil or

03/10/2008 12:52 PM

Thank you for the expansion of knowledge.

I am assembling the components to work this action.

Yo have been very helpful.

Look us up if you are ever in Honolulu

__________________
><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'>
Login to Reply
Power-User

Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Posts: 313
Good Answers: 7
#7

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/06/2008 2:53 PM

e-

What you are wanting to do is disperse the water. Auto parts stores sell alcohol-based solutions to disperse the water in a gasoline tank. I presume there are similar products for marine diesel. In addition to methyl, ethyl or propyl alcohol, these products usually contain a little acetone and toluene.

If you have a "goo", you probably have a biofilm (bacteria, algae) which has grown at the fuel/water interface. If there is not too much biofilm the worst that may happen is plugging the fuel filter. If there is a lot, draining and washing the tank with some of the cleaning solutions that others have mentioned may be required. The tank can then be dried by rinsing with alcohol followed by a thorough airing. Biofilm can cause a mess, but if you can keep water out, it should not form again.

Bill Morrow

__________________
Bill Morrow
Login to Reply
Associate

Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Beaumaris, Ynys Mon
Posts: 54
#11
In reply to #7

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/07/2008 12:27 PM

I used Shell Ensis fluid whenever I had a diesel engine that had been immersed in salt water, this got rid of all the water without any after effects, but don't know if this gets to grips with the other stuff, such as solids that is mentioned.

Login to Reply Score 1 for Good Answer
Guru
Popular Science - Weaponology - bwire Hobbies - Car Customizing - New Member

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Upper Mid-west USA
Posts: 7503
Good Answers: 96
#14
In reply to #7

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/08/2008 1:11 PM

bmorrow492,

Tank = vessel fuel tank = fuel vessel

case = box gear case = gear box

__________________
If death came with a warning there would be a whole lot less of it.
Login to Reply Off Topic (Score 5)
Active Contributor

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 14
#17
In reply to #7

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/08/2008 4:06 PM

Bill,

These alcohol based solutions might work great or merely help!

The goo is not from a biofilm but from the oil and water being mixed under pressure from the oil pump circulating the oil under pressure as it flows through the pressure galleries of the engine.

It becomes as thick as grease, and this is the mixture I am trying to break down.

__________________
><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'>
Login to Reply
Guru
United Kingdom - Member - Indeterminate Engineering Fields - Control Engineering - New Member

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: In the bothy, 7 chains down the line from Dodman's Lane level crossing, in the nation formerly known as Great Britain. Kettle's on.
Posts: 29990
Good Answers: 811
#8

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/07/2008 6:09 AM

A mix of 50:50 methylated spirits and battery water?

__________________
"Did you get my e-mail?" - "The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place" - George Bernard Shaw, 1856
Login to Reply Score 1 for Good Answer
Guru
Popular Science - Weaponology - bwire Hobbies - Car Customizing - New Member

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Upper Mid-west USA
Posts: 7503
Good Answers: 96
#15
In reply to #8

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/08/2008 1:19 PM

er..? methyl ethyl silicate mix with distilled water?? Love that smell (:

Yes that will but time intensive, and over night soak would probably due.

__________________
If death came with a warning there would be a whole lot less of it.
Login to Reply
Active Contributor

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 14
#18
In reply to #15

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/08/2008 4:13 PM

The use of methayled spirits and methyl ethyl silicates seem like good "solutions. Obtaining these chemicals in Hawaii is problematic but I am looking into the ideas with interest.

At this point, i have utilized # 2 diesel mixed with a propriearty petroleum engine flush and flooded (that is, overfilled the crankcase) the engine and left overnight and engine was pumped and fluched with a bit of fresh oils and seems to be showing no sign of more circulation of any emulsion. Please keep the ideas coming as this is a failrly common occurance in marine engine.

Sincerely

__________________
><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'>
Login to Reply
Guru
Popular Science - Weaponology - bwire Hobbies - Car Customizing - New Member

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Upper Mid-west USA
Posts: 7503
Good Answers: 96
#19
In reply to #18

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/08/2008 4:45 PM

methyl ethyl silicate is essentially 'oil of wintergreen' which ironically is easily attainable from an apothecary and last I used it was to free a rusted part at Pearl Harbor (:

My best suggestion of an easily obtainable cure is soluble oil mixed with water, 4 water to 1 oil, this has emulsified substances exceptionally with exception of when penetration is required then methyl ethyl silicate is better than most marketed products.

__________________
If death came with a warning there would be a whole lot less of it.
Login to Reply
Active Contributor

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 14
#21
In reply to #19

Re: Solvent to Dissolve Emulsified Oil

03/10/2008 12:48 PM

Thank you,

I think the health food store might have oil of wintergreen

Sound like a good system to try.

__________________
><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'> ><{{{'>
Login to Reply
Login to Reply 22 comments
Interested in this discussion?
You can "subscribe" to this discussion to be notified of new comments.
Click on the Subscribe menu at the top of the page.

Comments rated to be Good Answers:

These comments received enough positive ratings to make them "good answers".

Comments rated to be "almost" Good Answers:

Check out these comments that don't yet have enough votes to be "official" good answers and, if you agree with them, rate them!
Copy to Clipboard

Users who posted comments:

Bangorjohn (2); bmorrow492 (3); bwire (3); Electroman (1); erepair (7); Fierce Allegiance (1); PWSlack (2); taejonkwando (3)

Previous in Forum: Aluminum Alloys 3105 and 3004   Next in Forum: Fedding

Advertisement