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Old 26-05-2015, 10:43   #16
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

I recently went thru the same engine / saildrive replacement? cost exercise on a catamaran we were trying to purchase. I spend quite a bit of time talking to several engine mechanics and the local (high volume) Yanmar dealer. I have owned our current boat for over 20 years and have done all the maintenance on our Yanmar 4JH2E that has 2850 hours on it.

Here is what I have learned:

- a well maintained Yanmar will easily run for 8 - 10 thousand hours
- an experienced Yanmar mechanic can spend an hour or so examining the engines, and maybe testing the oil, and tell you with great confidence the current status of the engines
- the SD20 saildrive (almost certainly the one in your boat) is rock solid, bullet proof, and has a long history of giving thousands of hours service in a boat
- Yanmar saildrives, being aluminum in the water, are very susceptible to galvanic corrosion
- the internal parts of the saildrive are easily damaged by galvanic currents and need to be inspected. The boat I wanted needed all new gears in ONE SD50 saildrive. The other was still perfect after 2900 hours and 10-years of use
- replacement of saildrive internals is expensive ($2,500 for the SD50)
- a good Yanmar mechanic can tell you the status of the saildrive, but, that will probably require a haulout
- there are a lot of great Yanmar engine deals
- the cost of the work to replace the engines can easily exceed 50% of the cost of the engine and is very dependent on your SPECIFIC boat and situation
- the ONLY way to know the cost of labor is to have the person who will do the work come to the boat and examine it in detail
- get the estimate in writing

The Yanmar dealer could have sold me two new Yanmar 4-cylinder engines and saildrives. But, they had just spent $4,500 inspecting, tuning, and replacing bits and pieces on the Yanmars and saildrives. He was confident, that with due care, the engines and saildrives would last another 3,000 hours and 10-years.

Details are critical and can only be determined by spending money to have an experienced professional inspect and test your engines and saildrives.
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Old 26-05-2015, 11:28   #17
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

I'we just installed two 21HP Nannies in my boat, and the price differences are just unbelievable. Got two engines in CA for $1880 less than than the price of one in MA.
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Old 26-05-2015, 11:51   #18
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

I priced a new 50hp beta this past winter. It was about $13000 cdn. I figured about $5000 cdn for install. So about $18000 total. I decided to get a few more years out of my Perkins lol.

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Old 26-05-2015, 12:14   #19
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

4500 hours is nothing. nothing. has many years left in it, unless is a sail drive anything. if that is the case--- rodlmffao.
i learned the hard way not to turn my back on a saildrive.
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Old 26-05-2015, 13:24   #20
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

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Originally Posted by Balder View Post
I'we just installed two 21HP Nannies in my boat, and the price differences are just unbelievable. Got two engines in CA for $1880 less than than the price of one in MA.
Can you provide the dealer info?
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Old 26-05-2015, 13:36   #21
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

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There's lots of info out there on these. Do your own research.
Mine are 13 years old with around 4500 hours on them and don't look anything like that. They are fine and I expect many more years of service out of them.

You can always find isolated incidents of bad corrosion on any type of marine hardware (especially where stray current is involved). That proves nothing - it's just scaremongering at its worst.
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Old 26-05-2015, 16:01   #22
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

You may want to look up the electronic
Latitude 38 articles on the publishers experience with Yanmar sail drives on his big cat. And May's hard copy of the magazine had some good info on what to expect with regards to maintenance. It's not a knock on them, but good info on what you should expect with regards to maintenance.
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Old 26-05-2015, 21:18   #23
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

Yes, I agree, these engines probably have a lot more use to them. The engine type in question is not heavy, less than 200 lbs. Two strong guys should be able to lift them out by hand. Also, doesn't anyone ever rebuild their engines on this site? I couldn't imagine spending more than $2000 to rebuild one of these 3 cylinder engines. E-bay has a ton of these engines for less than $3000.
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Old 26-05-2015, 21:39   #24
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

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Also, doesn't anyone ever rebuild their engines on this site? I couldn't imagine spending more than $2000 to rebuild one of these 3 cylinder engines.
At least one blonde sailing chic rebuilt her 3gm30f on her back deck. You can read about it here I was Bored so Pulled the Head on my Yanmar

Short answer I rebuilt my 3gm30f for less then $1200, including $300 for machining (sleeving one bore and light honing for the other two) and $700 for parts, back in 2013. That did not include a valve job. At 1100 hours, all the parts measured to within new tolerances, except where the piston lands failed. The only special tool you need is the 36mm 6" deep socket ($100 to fab) to pull the inner nut off the crankshaft.

The crank removes out the back. It's a easy engine to rebuild without too many gotyas. I would recommend replacing the external oil line as it tends to rust out down by the starter. All labor provided by one stressed out blonde chic. Purple the engine rebuild has 200 hours on it now an runs perfect.
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Old 26-05-2015, 21:51   #25
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

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Originally Posted by sailorchic34 View Post
At least one blonde sailing chic rebuilt her 3gm30f on her back deck. You can read about it here I was Bored so Pulled the Head on my Yanmar

Short answer I rebuilt my 3gm30f for less then $1200, including $300 for machining (sleeving one bore and light honing for the other two) and $700 for parts, back in 2013. That did not include a valve job. At 1100 hours, all the parts measured to within new tolerances, except where the piston lands failed. The only special tool you need is the 36mm 6" deep socket ($100 to fab) to pull the inner nut off the crankshaft.

The crank removes out the back. It's a easy engine to rebuild without too many gotyas. I would recommend replacing the external oil line as it tends to rust out down by the starter. All labor provided by one stressed out blonde chic. Purple the engine rebuild has 200 hours on it now an runs perfect.

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Old 27-05-2015, 01:24   #26
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

Back in 2011 I had oil dillution caused by a broken injector on one engine at around 2000hrs.
Most (all?) bearings and oil pump needed replacement, new sleeves for the pistons.

Total cost was around 3.5k Euro including a new raw waterpump, plus and injector and valve job on the other engine.

The mechanics unhooked the engine in 30 minutes plus 10 minutes for a forklift while moored alongside.
Returning the engine took maybe 20minutes for the forklift and 1hr for the mechanic. That is only the engine, with the saildrive still in place.


If replacement of the engine is required: As long as Yanmar 3GM30s are around you can always replace your old one with a new one, with similar effort. Add a few hours if you change electronic panels / controls / cables, or if the saildrive needs replacement, too.
As soon as you change engine or saildrive dimensions (i.e. beds and mounts) it gets expensive.


That is of course with reasonable access to the engine and saildrive.
Our boat was a Lagoon 410 with engines under the bunk, with removable ceiling liners and access panels in the deck large enough to extract the engine.
Removing and re-installing of these linders and panels took me much longer than that to keep them white and shiny (is there a Yanmar mechanic with clean fingers??)
Newer cats with separate engine compartments and overhead hatches should be easier.
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Old 27-05-2015, 13:07   #27
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

My two bits: If you're not having problems, keep up your regular maintenance and carry on with the engines you have. I ran a crew in the logging woods for a number of years, running numerous diesels. The most severely stressed were those in the skidders, 53 series two-cycle GMs. They ran from daylight until dark most days (except 30 minutes for lunch), mostly wide open, 2,800 rpm. Again, these were two-cycle, they had blowers on them. We figured to trade for new machines at 10,000 hours. You should be good for some years yet.

In generator applications, well maintained diesels will run nearly forever, 40 - 60,000 hrs is not uncommon; with in-frame overhauls, much, much more.
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Old 27-05-2015, 13:24   #28
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

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Originally Posted by Stumble View Post
I am more pessimistic with the hours honestly. A diesel that is run constantly will go for ever, but most boats actually have a lot more starts and stops than they do engine hours, and they are far more damaging.

At 4500 hours I would budget for replacement, but not expect to do it yet. But this budget needs to come from a shop. Replacing engines can be far more expensive than just the cost of the engines. Depending on the boat I have seen engines where the best way to replace them was to cut the hull of the boat open, and drop the entire hull section out. This is not a job I would want to guess on without knowing the layout.
Yep, Both my 3GM30's were replaced/rebuilt before 2500 hours in a catamaran... and it was not a charter cat.
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Old 27-05-2015, 14:38   #29
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

Well, ain't I got a pair of mechanical oddities...

I've got a pair of 20 year old saildrives that are on their second engines, and for their first ten years, were in charter. I ain't skeered'a no saildrives. The only corollary I see between saildrives and failure has to do with Internet punditry
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Old 29-05-2015, 12:42   #30
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Re: Budget for engine replacement

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Originally Posted by Balder View Post
I'we just installed two 21HP Nannies in my boat, and the price differences are just unbelievable. Got two engines in CA for $1880 less than than the price of one in MA.
Did you buy What's Up Doc?

Sorry for the drift.
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