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Old 03-03-2016, 11:19   #1
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Been sitting for five years what to look for?

Currently have the opportunity to look at 2 boats with 2 very different powered engines.
Both have been sitting not ran since 2011 and as for the question if they were winterized properly who really knows talk is cheep??

looking for things I can check for before i spend the $$ to bring a surveyor in. Not gonna attempt to start them with crappy 5 year old fuel, and the impellers most definitely dryrotted.
Ex. checking if if turns manually and things of that sort

First is
2X
Engine Brand: Crusader
Engine Model: 454-cid 350-hp

second is
Engine Brand: Volvo Penta
Engine Model: MD17C
Engine/Fuel Type: Diesel

again going with a buddy to look at the boats and just need a list of some things i can do to help him out any info will help thanks
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Old 03-03-2016, 11:55   #2
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for???

If they would let you and I do not think they will, I'd start them, for a few seconds.

I'd stay away from gas motors, but they are cheaper to work on, If they are like the 454's that I had, one will actually run backwards, I didn't expect that.
They can and will burn an ENORMOUS amount of fuel.
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Old 03-03-2016, 12:34   #3
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for???

I'd be suspicious of a sailboat with a 454 engine. That's a Chrysler big-block V8 that's been marinized, or perhaps not, and MOST unusual to find in a sailboat unless some guy just picked up an engine (from a powerboat or a car) and DIY'ed it.


If a boat was properly intentionally laid up for five years, the fuel tank would have been drained and disconnected, and the cylinders fogged, and the oil drained, all as part of that. No telling what was done, when or why, unless the seller has made the effort to reconnect and restart the engine to ensure it is in good working order.


You'd want to disconnect the ignition (on the 454) and open the compression on the diesel, and then HAND CRANK either one to make sure the cylinder rings hadn't frozen up.


Any gasoline for the 454 may have left heavy varnish deposits in the carb or injectors, but if it runs, it runs and can be cleaned out later. Diesel is more likely to have biosludge growing in the tank, so even if it runs, that will need a thorough cleaning to be trustworthy. Regardless of how they were winterized. And if the batteries were just sitting for five years, I wouldn't expect either to start.


It's more like you make an offer, and include "conditional upon engine being fully operational or seller to pay for repairs" with an escrow amount to cover that.
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Old 04-03-2016, 08:40   #4
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for???

thanks for the incite. much appreciated
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:05   #5
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for???

Before you put it in the water check the thru-hulls, if backed by wood it may have dried and shrunk, thus thru hulls will leak.
From experience
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:05   #6
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for???

My suggestion is not to have anything to do with an engine that you cannot start and run for any length of time. Would you buy a car that you couldn't test drive? The best boat to buy is one that has been operated and maintained regularly. It costs more, but is cheaper in the long run. Of course, if everything else on the boats is in good condition, and they will not let you test the engines, then discount your offer price to cover the cost of having to replace the power plant.
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:06   #7
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for???

Sailboat or Powerboat? In many, many such cases the engine or engines are not your major concern when buying. Sounds counter-intuitive of course, but when you buy a house, while the heater is very important, the really BIG issues are water, water, water..i.e. roof and foundation. It is similar for a boat--especially a sailboat as the sails and rigging are your engine. So if you were hiring me to consult and evaluate, I'd really look the boat over first--yes THE BOAT--and in any event, most surveyors do little with the engine--you will need an engine survey! So one boat appears to have a 36hp 3 Cylinder diesel and the other has what appear to be two 350 hp gas engines--SO WHAT KIND OF BOATS ARE WE TALKING ABOUT HERE? And finally, are you doing this for a friend or are you the potential buyer? In other words--work with us here on CF and provide some necessary details and information. If a physician is checking your heart, he is going to want to know a lot more than just about the heart--but again, for a sailboat, the heart" is the rigging and sails so what kind of boats are these? For a sailboat with a 36 hp Yanmar, it may be, say a 35' Boat? In that case a new engine may cost a bit more than all new sails and rigging--but maybe not a whole lot more--so are you checking the sails and rigging or is the engine(s) the only thing that matters? SO what kind of boats and where are they????
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:12   #8
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for?

Why Why Why!

I guess if you love the boat and you love the price then maybe.

You can't pay too much for a good boat and you can't pay to little for a not so good boat!

Every year I think I have everything in good shape and every year I fix something I had no idea off.

Sitting in Florida for 5 years is a lot different than sitting in Maine for 5 years.

It is broken you just haven't found it yet!

Sent from my SGH-I337M using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
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Old 04-03-2016, 09:17   #9
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for?

Twin 454's I don't think would be a sail boat ?

Not real important until you go buying parts, but a 454 is a GM big block
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Old 04-03-2016, 12:04   #10
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for?

I once bought a Cal25 that had been sitting for 5 years. Being somewhat young and fearless, I splashed it and tried to start the inboard saildrive.

First thing...needed new battery. Then it actually did start, but would not idle. So, drained and cleaned the fuel tank, had the carb removed and cleaned (gas engine). After that, the engine ran very well.

In general, boats do NOT sit well. Look for any signs of water intrusion, especially around the chainplates. Any rubber part, like in pumps, should be suspect. Anything metal should be checked for corrosion, including the wiring, keel bolts, etc.

Some people drain their engine rather than fill with antifreeze. A drained engine will more likely have internal corrosion over a long wait. When you do get to start the engine, be sure to have someone watch the exhaust to see what the initial output is like.

I think it goes without saying that those boats should be seriously price reduced due to the long period of non-use.
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Old 04-03-2016, 14:01   #11
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for?

Definitely GM 454 not chrysler! When the GMs first start you will see a small amount of rust from exhaust this is from water sitting in the WC manifold its not really an issue usually. Fuel consumption I had twin 454s in a 34ft Luhrs they were econimical under 1600rpm which was about 10 knots, I found noise was the major distraction if you try running at 2500-3000rpm. Has it been in the water for 5 years? If it has there will be a major renovation of engine electrics through condensation,if they are injection could be all kinds of issues. Try and avoid sterndrives ,especially if they have been in water for 5 years. I would buy the diesel in a heartbeat ,but not with sterndrive. This is not a sail boat.
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Old 04-03-2016, 14:01   #12
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for?

For interior check for mold because of Florida humidity. Check rubber ring around saildrive unless it's a shaft drive. If shaft drive check stuffing box.Replace batteries, impellers, filters, & use remote diesel 6 gallon tank to start diesel. Most hoses will have to be replaced but hose clamps can be reused after inspection. Replace all fluids, oil, for engine & transmission. Check & flush water & toilet tanks. Be very careful with propane stoves & refrigerators. Check dates on all tanks. Check all air vents for spider webs & etc. You probably know about the rigging & sails. If it comes with a life raft it will have to be re-certified along along with flares & fire extinguishers. Check steering as cables might be frozen. Check all lines, ropes, & etc. I purchased a Florida catamaran & had it shipped to Michigan after sitting on the hard for 4 years. Anything containing small batteries were ruined. You are on your own for 454's.
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Old 05-03-2016, 06:48   #13
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for?

I am still confused and hoping the OP will return and answer the questions I posed a day or so ago....a 36 hp diesel or twin and BIG gas engines...? What about the BOATS????
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Old 09-03-2016, 18:50   #14
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for?

Suspicious and weird post....why doesn't the OP respond??? Really...I think the post was phony. Sometimes I wonder--why do I take the time to try to provide helpful information? Really...a 36 hp diesel or twin gas engines??? WTH??
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Old 09-03-2016, 19:10   #15
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Re: Been sitting for five years what to look for?

It is a strange post indeed. On one hand is a 454 power cruiser engine, and the other a diesel with low HP .
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