Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 03-05-2016, 09:22   #16
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: East Coast Florida
Boat: Chris Craft 38 Commander 1965
Posts: 111
Re: diesel vs gas engines

I take it that by "Cruisers" being capitalized he means a Cruisers Inc brand boat. Yes they are mostly gas. That is pretty much solely for price point as they are an entry level or minimally constructed/finished line of boats. Think or a larger Bayliner.

That's ok as long as you know what you are getting. With proper maintenance and not put through heavy use they can be just fine.

My 38 ft Chris Craft originally had gas engines and burned about 30 to 40 Gal/hr and cruised at 25- top end at 30 MPH. Diesel engines replaced those back in the 80's and now fuel is burned at 18 Gal/Hr cruise at 18 -20 MPH with top end of 25 MPH.

Diesel Fuel is around $5/Gal in the Bahamas and Gas around $6/Gal (as of 2014).
__________________

__________________
Squanderbucks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2016, 10:00   #17
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Carrabelle, Florida
Boat: Self-built 44' steel trawler
Posts: 873
Re: diesel vs gas engines

We saw diesel prices very close to US prices in the Bahamas this Spring, but, we stayed away from the tourist sites (Chub Cay, Nassua, North Bimini, Port Layaca) and spent most of our marina time at Great Harbor, West End, and Spanish Wells. The secret seems to be that the smaller comunities are powered by diesel generators, so large barges arrive at low cost and they have fuel docks at the generator fuel farms. Ironically, we loaded up with 1,000 gallons before leaving the US, expecting prohibitive prices when we got there. Gasoline, since it is only used for land vehicles and boats, may be a very different story.
__________________

__________________
tkeithlu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2016, 10:39   #18
Registered User
 
ranger42c's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Maryland, USA
Boat: 42' Sportfish
Posts: 2,984
Re: diesel vs gas engines

Quote:
Originally Posted by Squanderbucks View Post
I take it that by "Cruisers" being capitalized he means a Cruisers Inc brand boat. Yes they are mostly gas. That is pretty much solely for price point as they are an entry level or minimally constructed/finished line of boats. Think or a larger Bayliner.

Didn't read it that way; thought he meant the concept, not the brand.

Most Cruisers (brand) I've seen around here are 42' and above, some express boats, some bridge boats... and they're diesels, not gas.

They seem reasonably Sea Ray-ish to me. (Not a criticism.)

-Chris
__________________
Selby Bay, South River, Chesapeake Bay, USA.
ranger42c is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2016, 11:13   #19
Marine Service Provider
 
texasnielsen's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Posts: 13
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

Engine type are like the decision about pickles for me. In other words, how are "you" going to use the boat?
On land, this discussion is similar to all the diesels you see on pick ups now a days. How many of those purchased new will ever see the Milage on the odometer by the original owner to warrant the price of the diesel option?
On the water, how many are actually going beyond coastal cruising of just a few miles from their home marina?
IMO too much consideration is given to what "Joe" is driving versus what "my" needs and budget allow for.
Just saying.
__________________
texasnielsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2016, 08:26   #20
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Carrabelle, Florida
Boat: Self-built 44' steel trawler
Posts: 873
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

I'm going to take the position that safety should be a part of a decision to choose diesel rather than gasoline, at least as long as we're talking about inboard engines and there is a choice. Outboards are very well vented and the tanks, even if enclosed, are rarely exposed to sparks. Inboards are enclosed, and there is no way to prevent at least some gasoline getting into that space. That means extreme care in artificially ventilating the space (running the blowers) and being sure that some previous owner didn't substitute an automotive alternator or other electrical part, at a greatly lower cost, for spark safe equipment. It also means that fuel tank leaks as the boat gets older are a risk. You don't have any of that with a diesel. I stupidly pumped fifty gallons of diesel into my engine room once; all it meant was anchoring and two hours work with buckets and filters. Two of my three alternators are single wire $60 Delcos; no problem. Loose gasoline is just damned dangerous. I've taken part in a rescue after two commercial fishermen added gasoline with the engine running; one of them may never walk again. It wasn't a fire; his ankles were shattered as he was propelled into the air.
__________________
tkeithlu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2016, 09:54   #21
Marine Service Provider
 
texasnielsen's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Posts: 13
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

Quote:
Originally Posted by tkeithlu View Post
I'm going to take the position that safety should be a part of a decision to choose diesel rather than gasoline, at least as long as we're talking about inboard engines and there is a choice.....
To that there can be very little debate. Although I believe there there is not a universal truth about safety from a risk perspective (unfortunately). Risk (safety) means different things to different people. I would never ride a motorcycle down a populated highway while doing a wheelie. Too risky (not safe) from my perspective. I would also weigh differently the aspects of a long distance cruise versus coastal cruising (coastal being a generous nod to how most vessels are used).
Stern drives, being an inboard engine, are equivalent to me regarding the discussion of gas v diesel and the debate of inboard engine safety.

So, back to risk. From my employment in aviation risk, among many aspects of review needs to be quantifiable which comes from cycles. In this (boating) case, cycles equaling number of vessels equipped, either gas or diesel. (Always from an "inboard" perspective thus outboards will not be included for this analysis.)
With the "numbers" of gas v diesels largely leaning to gas installations (all type of vessels, inclusive of Cruisers brand, I would postulate that the safety concerns of gas versus diesel are such that one isn't inherently unsafe (more unsafe?) than the other. What is likely more significant is the "kind" of boater one associates with gas versus diesel.

In my experiences, the diesel owner is more mariner than boater. (My way of differentiation between those who may enjoy casual use versus those who make it a lifestyle). Those who are mariners are more likely to practice safety with recurrence. Those who are Mariners are more likely aware of risk (problems) when not practicing safety.

So yes, gas is more flammable. However when one practices safety and measures all aspects of boating (the price of entry and sustained use for intended purpose) gasoline will continue to be an alternative which is legitimate. That is an assumption based of risk analysis of boating cycles (use) and the practice of safety. IMO.
__________________
texasnielsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2016, 07:55   #22
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 4,881
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

Quote:
Originally Posted by texasnielsen View Post
In my experiences, the diesel owner is more mariner than boater. (My way of differentiation between those who may enjoy casual use versus those who make it a lifestyle). Those who are mariners are more likely to practice safety with recurrence. Those who are Mariners are more likely aware of risk (problems) when not practicing safety.
You can debate the safety aspects but this explanation is just silly ego tripping. You get the same thing with pickups, the guys with egos buy a big diesel 1 ton dually and the only need for the diesel is so it trails smoke when they floor it and bragging at the bar.
__________________
valhalla360 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2016, 08:15   #23
Moderator
 
a64pilot's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Albany Ga.
Boat: Island Packet 38
Posts: 17,056
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

Quote:
Originally Posted by valhalla360 View Post
You can debate the safety aspects but this explanation is just silly ego tripping. You get the same thing with pickups, the guys with egos buy a big diesel 1 ton dually and the only need for the diesel is so it trails smoke when they floor it and bragging at the bar.

I actually think the pickup example is a very good one, I have been getting an average of 17 MPG with my Diesel Dually since I bought it in 01, and about 10 MPG when pulling a 36' 5th wheel.
A big block gas motor would get about half that mileage. The Duramax with Allison combination cost me about $5,000 extra in 01, or about 10% increase in the purchase price of the truck, but since I used to pull often and have kept it for now 15 yrs, it has saved money, but if I hadn't used it much and had sold it in five years, it would have cost me money.

Same for a boat, Diesel costs lots more up front, but if your going to use the boat often, and keep it for a long time, it will save you money.
But if it's meant to be a floating beach house and you'll likely sell it in a few years, do not spend the bucks for Diesels, just like a Diesel PU.
__________________
a64pilot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2016, 09:41   #24
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Anacortes
Boat: previous - Whitby 42 new - Goldenwave 44
Posts: 1,735
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

Decision factors:

Safety - diesel best by far
Initial cost - gas best, diesel much more expensive
Fuel cost (MPG not necessarily cost/gallon) - diesel best
Cost of maintenance - diesel is best by far (spark plugs, electrical system issues mostly)
Reliability - diesel best
Bragging rights - who cares
__________________
exMaggieDrum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2016, 11:20   #25
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Carrabelle, Florida
Boat: Self-built 44' steel trawler
Posts: 873
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

I love it. What a wonderfully clear summary of the issue!
__________________
tkeithlu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2016, 13:02   #26
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2013
Location: Oregon to Alaska
Boat: Wheeler Shipyard 83' ex USCG
Posts: 1,708
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

My diesel truck did 300,000 miles of almost continuous heavy towing before overhaul. Try that with a gas engine. Now my truck has an easy life, but I get 25mpg if I don't speed (with a fuel catalyst).
The Detroit non-turbo main engines in my boat had somewhere above 20,000 hours before overhaul. Now I get 10 knots at 8.5 gl/hr pushing an 83' boat. Try that with gas.
__________________
Lepke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2016, 13:35   #27
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Carrabelle, Florida
Boat: Self-built 44' steel trawler
Posts: 873
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

If you get to install your own engine, diesel initial cost may not be prohibitive. Mine is a Navy rebuilt Detroit Diesel 4-53 that cost $4,200 with transmission in year 2000 on the surplus market. It's not quite as efficient and weighs more than a modern diesel, but it's much simpler, easy to maintain, and cost a fraction of a modern Westerbeke. Smooth as silk, no valve rattle, and 2 NM to the gallon pushing 60,000 pounds.
__________________
tkeithlu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2016, 07:52   #28
Registered User
 
wooden head's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: seattle ish
Boat: youngquist viking 34
Posts: 106
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

I think a large issue not yet mentioned is a lot of people are afraid of diesels.they havent been around them haven't worked on them, don't know how to work on them. They associate them with smelly loud black smoke belching mack trucks of the sixties.the parts are expensive and trained diesel mechanics are more expensive than backyard gas mechanics. Most of those objections can be easily overcome by logic but boats are emotional. especially at an entry level people want what they know what they are comfortable with.
__________________
wooden head is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2016, 09:30   #29
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Anacortes
Boat: previous - Whitby 42 new - Goldenwave 44
Posts: 1,735
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

Quote:
Originally Posted by wooden head View Post
I think a large issue not yet mentioned is a lot of people are afraid of diesels.they havent been around them haven't worked on them, don't know how to work on them. They associate them with smelly loud black smoke belching mack trucks of the sixties.the parts are expensive and trained diesel mechanics are more expensive than backyard gas mechanics. Most of those objections can be easily overcome by logic but boats are emotional. especially at an entry level people want what they know what they are comfortable with.
There is a lot of truth to what you just said!

I am certainly not a diesel expert and had to learn from scratch with only some gas engine experience. I was intimidated by the unknown at the time but the reality is that diesels are much simpler and more forgiving to operate and maintain than gas motors. I haven't seen that diesel mechanics are more expensive than gas mechanics, at least for marine techs. Since diesels are easier to work on than gas, the hours charged are usually much less too. If you have clean fuel, air, and a working starter/battery a diesel will start and run (provided it doesn't have some other fundamental issue). The cooling systems are similar for both. Diesels can have expensive issues with the fuel injection pumps but these are not a regular occurrence. They do happen but not all that much. Diesel fuel has to be cleaner than gas though as it can mess up the fuel pump and injectors and can plug the lines. The spark systems for gas engines are notoriously fickle and difficult to troubleshoot for a novice.

There is an exception for diesels and gas engines now though. New models have very complicated electronic systems for pollution control, at least in the US. They almost require a tech expert with the proper equipment to troubleshoot and work on. A very knowledgeable owner can do some things with them but they have to know a lot and avoid damaging the systems during troubleshooting and adjusting.
__________________
exMaggieDrum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2016, 11:08   #30
Registered User
 
wooden head's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: seattle ish
Boat: youngquist viking 34
Posts: 106
Re: Diesel Vs Gas Engines

I know the objections mentioned are not real issues so much as perceptions. But as a boat owner that spent thousands not getting my first diesel running it's a common perception. Had I got the right mechanic in the first place it would have been different but my wife still refuses to consider another diesel boat. Perception becomes reallity
__________________

__________________
wooden head is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
diesel, engine

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Gas Station Diesel vs Marine Diesel Rocketman Engines and Propulsion Systems 75 08-05-2016 20:31
Nmpg Per Hour For 35-38' Powerboat With Twin Gas Engines At Displacement Speeds? jm21 Powered Boats 34 03-05-2016 10:16
Switching out gas for diesel engines Johnyo Engines and Propulsion Systems 26 28-04-2016 22:43
Gas engines David Snyder General Sailing Forum 6 15-04-2016 17:48
Gas engines, fans and kerosene lamps SURV69 General Sailing Forum 3 13-02-2013 16:36



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 02:52.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.