Do you think taking frequent cylinder liner measurements (electronically by an external company)is a good strategy? How often should be done?
Well I believe it is a useful tool, especially nowdays where several fuel issues are noted and we have seen bad quality fuels literally destroying cylinder liners. Additionally, I would recommend that an inspection is carried before vessel’s DD, in order to obtain the measurements and subsequently the technical department can have a clear picture of the liners’ condition and order them well in advance in case needed. Also considering that ship’s crew quite often provide misleading measurements, I would recommend these measurements to be carried out at least every year.
Cylinder liner scanning/measurements by expert companies that do not require the removal of the piston unit can often give valuable information and assist the technical managers of the vessel to accurately track and detect abnormal wear. However, I believe that if we rely too much in outsourcing the evaluation of the M/E cylinder condition, then the engine crew and the technical superintendents will loose this expertise/knowledge. We should be able and trained to detect the abnormal wear through simple means such as: frequent and detailed scavenge space inspections, M/E scrape down analyses, liner measurements during piston overhauling, M/E performance measurements. However, a third party inspection once every 5 years or in cases we have doubts about the quality of the reporting onboard, can useful.