Lancer 45'

Apr 18, 2021
Lancer 45 Channel Islands Marina
I purchased a 1982 45' Lancer Masthead Sloop in June of 2020, I spent the last few months renovating and upgrading just about everything. I have been having issues with fuel and losing prime when hitting rougher water. Anything rougher than the harbor. Found a lot of junk in the tank during a fuel polishing. There is not very good access to the tank to do a good cleaning. I am thinking of taking the floor up just over the tank and cutting access holes to access the interior of the tank and try to do a betting cleaning. I have also thought of replacing the tank. I am wondering if anyone has experienced this with this boat and if so do you know what issues I might run into trying to replace the tank.
Jan 7, 2011
Oday 322 East Chicago, IN
Sometimes there is a screen at the end of the fuel pickup tube that can get plugged or blocked, once you increase throttle or get into choppy water.

Also, have you checked the filters to make sure that they are not gummed up (and when you increase throttle, the engine starves for fuel).

Other issues could be an air leak somewhere. Not sure why it would only manifest during choppy water though (except these issues always turn up at the least opportune times.

Apr 18, 2021
Lancer 45 Channel Islands Marina
Yes, to all of the above. I have three filter systems, they are all clean because they have been replaced, in the beginning the first filter just above the pickup tube had water and crap in the bowl. This is what made me polish the fuel and vacuum the bottom of the fuel tank. The result was the removal of a quart of pure sludge. The fuel tank had only maybe 25 gals of fuel when I purchased the boat. After several months of working on the boat I filled the tank up. After three short trips out to rough water is when this issue started. I am thinking I filled the tank and all the crud that had grown on the walls of the tank after 30 years started to jell up and drop to the bottom of the tank. That just makes me think the tank is full of crap and the only way to solve the problem is to access the tank and clean it out or replace it. This is my dilemma. I don't know what I will encounter when I get to the tank. My first thought is to replace the tank. but is that as easy as said. What is the tank made of, what size is it, was it built into the boat, will it fit out the boats access hole, will it need to be cut up to get it out, what tank is needed to replace the old tank? Or, should I just cut a couple of holes in the top of the existing tank and power wash it, install new access holes and adapt the floor to the new access holes. What I am wondering has anyone ever had this issue with a Lancer 45'?

To give you some history. I have been toed back to my slip 4 times. I have removed the pick up tube and cleaned it twice. There is no screen at the end of the pick up tube. There was a check valve just outside of the tank just above the pick up tube. I remove it and replaced a ball valve on the fuel line right above the pickup tube. Just above that is a filter system with a water separator bowl. Several feet aft towards the 89 hp Perkins Deisel motor is a second filter system. just before that is an electric fuel pump. After the second filter system is the manual motor actuated fuel pump. from there is the fuel injector pump filter and then the fuel injector pump.

Right now I am in a holding pattern. The fuel system shut down and I had to be toed into my slip. I have attempted to prime everything but it has not worked. Had to leave town so have not ventured any deeper. Thinking when I pull the pickup tube I will find it clogged. Won't know until mid May.

Just wondering if anyone else has the same boat and is having the same problem or has had the same problem.
Apr 18, 2021
Lancer 45 Channel Islands Marina
I found a very small fuel leak at one of the injectors. I fixed that and the motor started right up. It ran for months just fine. Then about a month ago after I had been away for over a month I tried starting the motor again while working on a couple of things and it happened again. It started right up but within seconds it stopped lit it was out of fuel. I was getting ready to leave so I did not have time to screw around with it. I am hoping it was just because it hadn’t been running for so long that air managed to get back into the line and it just needs to be primed again. I have been gone for over a month again and will be trying it in mid December again. I am wondering if there is a more upgraded injection system that can be installed?????
Oct 22, 2014
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
I bought a mature boat. There are 2 fuel tanks, Aprox 160 gallons. The seller did not know how much fuel was in the tanks, nor how long it has been in the tanks. Based on the stories about the boat, I guessed the fuel was more than 3 years old and the maintenance had been minimal with the previous owner.

First time out in rough water, engine running fine. Starts to surge. Dies, will not restart. Sail back to marina. Get a tow in to the slip. Fuel filter clogged with what looks like coffee grounds.

Explore Fuel Polishing. Cost about $2,500. Prohibitive..
Instead I replace the primary with a Racor 500M.
Uses a 30 micron filter. I ran the boat and start burning the fuel. I give the fuel an additive shock treatment of Biobor JF and Startron Marine Enzyme Diesel Treatment. The combination was discussed on Practical Sailor. Gives a 1-2 punch to the usual suspects that contaminate our fuel systems.

I completed about 3 filter replacements.
Here is what one of the filters looked like when changed.

After about 5 filters (cost $10 each) I had burned through most of the old fuel. The each change lasted for a longer time between changes. Now I can go for about 100 hours before I get to wondering how the filters are. Tanks are pretty much clean. I did replace the O-ring on the fuel cap. This keeps water out of the fuel tank. I recovered all of the fuel and saved about $2000 in the process.
May 25, 2012
john alden caravelle 42 sturgeon bay, wis
i have had a fuel line gasket that had been pinched the wrong way. did just what you experience. i changed banjo nut seals. i changed fuel line seals. found a crimped one where the line goes into the high pressure fuel pump, finally. it took me a while to locate the bad seal. what a pain.
i'm good at priming the pump. just worked through the fuel line connections one by one till i found the culprit.
it never dripped. but it would create an air bubble from time to time.

ain't old boats fun:)
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Oct 29, 2016
Hunter 41 DS Port Huron
You might want to check the fuel pickup tube, the older model boats (not saying this your case, just something to check) had copper fuel pickup tubes over time they develope pin holes in them which when the fuel level is below full allows air to be entrained into the fuel lines, resulting in low of prime. This happen on my sons early 80's vintage Soverel 33, we replaced the pickup tube and the problem went away.