Saturday, August 23, 2014

TOOLS OF AN ELECTRIC SAILOR: Hopkins Measuring Funnel

One of the real nice things about Electric Propulsion and having removed the diesel engine from the boat is not needing to do multi quart oil changes every fifty hours. Indeed my maintenance has just about gone to zero in the seven years since I switched to electric propulsion. The only regular maintenance I have had to do has involved the Honda 2000 generator that serves for providing power for battery charging at anchor and also acts as a poor man's hybrid when doing an extended electro sail. The maintenance on the generator has  been minimal consisting mainly of an annual oil change. The oil change on the Honda 2000 does not
involve a lot of oil compared to the old Westebeke 27 diesel. In fact it's only .42 Quarts. Which is kind of a problem when one is using a plain funnel with a quart container of 30W oil that the Honda requires. It usually results in an overflow situation and some messy clean up.
I came across a very handy solution for oil change overflow problem in the form of the Hopkins FloTool 10704 Spill Saver Measu-Funnel. It is an elegant solution for dealing with oil changes on small capacity engines like the Honda 2000eu generator or an outboard.

It has a graticule on the side calibrated in various liquid measurements. You just fill the container with the appropriate amount of oil you need. It also has a snap on cover that will help avoid any spills should you drop the funnel accidently.

It's operation is pretty simple. Once the funnel is filled with the premeasured amount of oil. You insert the clear hose of the funnel into the oil fill opening: 

Then you turn the blue valve at the bottom of the funnel to start the flow of oil from the container to engine. Since the oil has been  pre measured there is little chance of an overflow.

It even has a cap at the end of the hose to capture any residual oil that may drip down from the container. You can then return the residual oil back into the original quart container and not waste a drop.  In short this ingenious funnel makes oil changing on board or on land a much cleaner operation. That's why it's one of the tools of this electric sailor.

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