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Old 08-11-2017, 11:23   #1
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Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

I'm looking at buying this boat. It's a 2010 Beneteau 43 mono, in case the link doesn't work. It's in charter now in Southern California and I'll probably leave it in charter for 1-2 years and then bring it to the Bay Area, where I live.

The broker says it has "unknown" engine hours, but that it might be around 2,400 and that I can have a mechanic test it and guesstimate the hours. I'm thinking a boat built in 2010 comes with an engine hour meter... Your thoughts?

Thanks.
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Old 08-11-2017, 11:41   #2
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

It does have an hour meter, unfortunately it's an LCD one built into the tach that is notorious for failure. It keeps recording the hours but the display fails, fixes, including replacement, are problematic, new ones are expensive and fail quickly.
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Old 08-11-2017, 13:06   #3
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

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>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
but that it might be around 2,400 and that I can have a mechanic test it and guesstimate the hours.>>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Huh? Sounds like voodoo economics to me. My engine with 3376 hours sounds better than many with lots less hours. How coul any mechanic do this? I'm all ears, but suspect it's not possible.
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Old 08-11-2017, 13:09   #4
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

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Huh? Sounds like voodoo economics to me. My engine with 3376 hours sounds better than many with lots less hours. How coul any mechanic do this? I'm all ears, but suspect it's not possible.
Agree it's not possible but with a clean bill of health from a good diesel mechanic I wouldn't worry about it.
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Old 08-11-2017, 13:22   #5
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

Also, if you replace the tachometer unit, that resets the hours to zero. If you find an electronics guy who could replace just the display then you’d see its true hours. It keeps counting them, it just can’t show them.
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Old 09-11-2017, 06:03   #6
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

No Voodoo economics. Although the hour meter probably gave up the ghost within the first year, most companies with boats in charter have a reasonable estimate of the number of hours per year being put on the engine. The estimate of 2400 for a 2010 boat sounds quite reasonable.

Many would say this is high time and I would totally disagree. If it has seen regular maintenance, a typical service life could be 12,000 hours. Most marine diesels die an early death due to lack of use, so for me, I would prefer a higher time recent year diesel over a lower time older one. Just have a "proper" diesel mechanic look it over. Have an oil sample analyzed if you want more detail.
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Old 09-11-2017, 06:48   #7
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

I would check with the the local engine service department. I am quite certain that if you have them hook their laptop up to the engine software they can tell you the hours on the engine. Worth a call at least. Good luck on your purchase.
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Old 09-11-2017, 07:19   #8
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

You might want to read this before getting an oil analysis.

OIL ANALYSIS, worth it ? Yes !.... well maybe not.
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Old 09-11-2017, 07:25   #9
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

I'd be far less concerned with the engine than I would be with all the other bits of a boat that charter folk can damage in the two years in which you own the boat but it's still in charter.

Standing rigging, sails, groundings, various interior bits, etc..

I presume any contract means that the charter company needs to return the boat to you in a predefined condition, but the number of hours on the engine would be way down my list of worries.
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Old 09-11-2017, 08:10   #10
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

The Charter Company will very likely have a fuel log for the boat, at least for the time it's been in charter, perhaps even since new. If so you can get a good estimate of the hours by totaling the fuel purchased divided by the average fuel burn per hour for the engine in question. I tried this with our fuel log--going back to 1987--and the result was within 150 hours of what our analog engine hour meter reported for our engine at the time.

FWIW...
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Old 09-11-2017, 08:21   #11
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

Engine hours is only one of many factors relating to an engines condition. There is how often the oil was changed, what type of oil was used, how the engine was treated, who made the engine and luck. I also agree with getting an oil analysis.

Did the owner keep a service log and keep receipts?

What I am getting at is you need to get an analysis of the engine regardless of accumulated hours. Diesels can last a very long time if they are treated properly. All the other factors combined matter more than hours.
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Old 09-11-2017, 08:46   #12
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

Thanks, everyone. Good ideas.
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Old 09-11-2017, 09:22   #13
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

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Originally Posted by Calif.Ted View Post
It does have an hour meter, unfortunately it's an LCD one built into the tach that is notorious for failure. It keeps recording the hours but the display fails, fixes, including replacement, are problematic, new ones are expensive and fail quickly.
The previous owner of our 2011 Beneteau 40 added a Hobbs meter when the Yanmar tach LCD reading started intermittently failing. When we bought the boat, we were able to catch one reading on the LCD before it failed completely so were able to confirm the hours differential between the Hobbs and actual. By the end of the season the whole tach had failed. We replaced it with one without the hour meter so now it is hobbs plus 183 hours!
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Old 09-11-2017, 09:50   #14
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

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We replaced it with one without the hour meter so now it is hobbs plus 183 hours!

silly question probably , but why dont you put the hobbs on the 12v for 183 hours and get rid of the difference ?
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Old 09-11-2017, 10:46   #15
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Re: Buying 2010 Beneteau with "unknown" engine hours

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Huh? Sounds like voodoo economics to me. My engine with 3376 hours sounds better than many with lots less hours. How coul any mechanic do this? I'm all ears, but suspect it's not possible.
Just give it an EKG. My guess would be some "good" mechanic may hazed a guess from sound and a compression test and looking at the oil pressure. A maintained engine that has been run may be in better condition than one that has set for periods and has fewer hours.
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