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Old 22-07-2018, 20:16   #1
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New yacht - Old engine?

Would anyone fitting out a new yacht consider a non-modern engine?

I'm looking at a part-completed 40ft sailboat, and the current owner says "noooo, just put a little perkins forklift motor in it - don't bother with a super-modern setup".

I see his point, but I'd really like the extra range, the quieter and cleaner running, and just the fact that it's newer.

But for a cruising yacht that's intended to be taken out of the way and used in remote areas, I see the wisdom in his words.

What say ye?
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Old 22-07-2018, 20:29   #2
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

He's right.
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Old 22-07-2018, 20:37   #3
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

I would be more inclined towards a Kubota fork lift engine....
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Old 22-07-2018, 20:46   #4
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

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I would be more inclined towards a Kubota fork lift engine....
#include logic;
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Old 22-07-2018, 20:49   #5
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

Look at Beta Marine, they're kubota based and an all mechanical engine. You can probably find a diesel mechanic in out of the way places, but not much chance of finding one with the electronics to diagnose and fix a modern electronic engine.
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Old 22-07-2018, 21:09   #6
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

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I would be more inclined towards a Kubota fork lift engine....
Well, yeah, but he's right on the general concept, in some cases simple is better.

For instance, I just spent 20 hours replacing the fuel return line seals on a Duramax (Isuzu) common rail engine. The genius engine designers put the return lines inside the valve cover,so not only could you not tell if they were leaking, you couldn't tell until the fuel gauge told you so by dropping precipitously. (diesel was blowing out the crankcase vent)

Got to give it to the Isuzu bottom end engineers though. Probably put over a hundred miles on it with just diesel in the crankcase, with about half towing a heavy 24' 'family cruiser', and just fixed the seals, changed the oil a couple of times (no metallic particles at all, on either change) and everything seems normal...
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Old 22-07-2018, 21:54   #7
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

If you're wanting to go remote, then you do not want an engine that depends on a computer to tell it's okay to start it. [To me the creepiest way this could come to light is, unexpected trough crosses your anchorage with a fair bit of wind in it; suddenly you're on a lee shore, wanting to get the hook up, and cannot start the engine because the computer's gone wonky. The simpler and more tractor like the engine is, the better. Easier to fix, easier to keep running, built for heavy duty.

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Old 22-07-2018, 22:46   #8
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

Yea I agree if you want to go remote go mechanical engine. I'd go kubota based as Japanese seem to be better at making light economical engines than English. ( Dont mean to start a tirade ) You can often find a work around if you are mechanically inclined, not so easy on an CPU
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Old 22-07-2018, 23:24   #9
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

I have a van with a computer controlled common rail diesel fuel system in it and with the experience I have had with it there is no way I would have one in a boat. They are dependent upon a mass of electrical connections to keep runing.

Kubuto are great engines but then so is pretty well every diesel engine built in Japan.
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Old 22-07-2018, 23:45   #10
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

Agree with those saying a simple tractor motor. Our older 3 cyl Yanmars are simple Diesel motors. Give them fuel & air, get it to spin and they will run.

About 3 months ago we were struck by lightening at Lee Stocking Island, Exumas, Bahamas. This is way south in the Bahamas, just north of George Town. The lightening took out all our electrical components that had/have any kind of chip, diode, resistor, etc. but didn't affect things like starter motors. Yup, our old Yammies fired right up.

We have since talked to others with lightening strikes and computer controlled motors, they could not start them after the strike.

Simple is better in my book!
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Old 23-07-2018, 00:11   #11
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

Okay, RaymondR, try this on as only an idea. You have one of these computer controlled engines in a monohull. You're at Turkey Is., or maybe Yankee Jack Creek, and it is one of those summer evenings with severe thunderstorms coming through. Most of the lightning is cloud to cloud, as we have seen, but some of it is ground strikes. Still prefer the computer has to say everything is hunky dory? For me, not so, the EMP can take those sensitive electronics out so very well. Both those are protected anchorages, most likely nothing terrible would happen, even if you dragged, but would you be content?

Your answer may be different from mine, and that's fine. I won't have to wear your choice.

Ann
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Old 23-07-2018, 01:37   #12
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

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Okay, RaymondR, try this on as only an idea. You have one of these computer controlled engines in a monohull. You're at Turkey Is., or maybe Yankee Jack Creek, and it is one of those summer evenings with severe thunderstorms coming through. Most of the lightning is cloud to cloud, as we have seen, but some of it is ground strikes. Still prefer the computer has to say everything is hunky dory? For me, not so, the EMP can take those sensitive electronics out so very well. Both those are protected anchorages, most likely nothing terrible would happen, even if you dragged, but would you be content?

Your answer may be different from mine, and that's fine. I won't have to wear your choice.

Ann
???

Would not happen to me Ann because as I said I would not have a computer controlled, common rail diesel fuel system in a boat I owned.
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Old 23-07-2018, 03:48   #13
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

If you choose an older engine, pick something common in most of the world.

I was a commercial fisherman and still know people in that trade. They're full of horror stories about electronic controlled engines. Most require some expensive test equipment to trouble shoot and can't be fixed at sea unless you carry a full set of electronic spares. Some are buying older engines, rebuilding them and changing out the new engine.
Another advantage of older engines, for spares, much can be found on ebay. I have a full set of pumps, starters, injectors and so on for my older, 100% mechanical, engines.
Properly done, an overhaul produces a better than new engine. Many parts have to be mic'ed and clearances checked, instead of just passing along an assembly line.
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Old 23-07-2018, 05:12   #14
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

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If you choose an older engine, pick something common in most of the world.

I was a commercial fisherman and still know people in that trade. They're full of horror stories about electronic controlled engines. Most require some expensive test equipment to trouble shoot and can't be fixed at sea unless you carry a full set of electronic spares. Some are buying older engines, rebuilding them and changing out the new engine.
Another advantage of older engines, for spares, much can be found on ebay. I have a full set of pumps, starters, injectors and so on for my older, 100% mechanical, engines.
Properly done, an overhaul produces a better than new engine. Many parts have to be mic'ed and clearances checked, instead of just passing along an assembly line.

Having spent my working life in the world of automotive repair during the switch to computerized engine controls, I heard much of the same mantra.
Although there were times when technology got a little ahead of itself resulting in bad moments, there is no question that modern engine design is far advanced from old.
I have worked on and maintained many mechanically injected Diesel engines that suffered from reliability issues caused by inept maintenance or repairs, often professionally performed. Although I am sure that a percentage of the people reading these reply’s have the skills to deal with an ailing older style engine, so many of the posts I read here show that the vast majority of owners rely on a professional to get them going when things go wrong.
I’d like to point out that just because an engine uses a mechanical injection system does not mean that it is simple either.
I’ve witnessed far too many unnecessary repairs that were undertaken due to a lack of understanding of the basic technology.
Yes, modern direct injected diesels utilize electronics, require specialized tools and training and they are absolutely intolerant of contaminated fuel the same thing should also be said about their predecessors. New electronics engines run very well, they last just as long or longer than their predecessors and they are much cleaner running, a great thing for our environment.
Finally, the idea of a reman engine being superior to a new engine is a bit of a stretch as far as I am concerned. So much depends on the people doing the work. I have a friend who owns a business that rebuilds big outboard motor engines. He owns state of the art equipment and spends a lot of time producing engines that are probably just as good as new. They are not inexpensive though and they are priced above manufacturers “reman” engines. I have witnessed the disassembly of very low hour “factory” reman’s and am always shocked at what I see. There are things inside these engines that would have never been allowed on the original assembly line and it all contributes to a low life expectancy.
Can an engine be rebuilt to “better than new”?
I am sure it can but it is a lot of work involving tools and procedures most rebuilders have never dreamed of...
The days of cast iron blocks requiring seasoning to achieve their most stable form, thus making a rebored cylinder on a seasoned block the ultimate, are 30 years gone now and I am sure that for the most part, that was the thinking that fostered the idea that rebuilt is better...
Engine reliability in a boat is so dependent on such a wide variety of factors that simply dismissing an engine due to its age, new or old, is folly.
Installation, use, maintenance, suitability to use and repair all impact it. Get one or two parts of the equation wrong and you will pay the price. Get it all right and any engine can easily become one of the legendary ones...
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Old 23-07-2018, 08:58   #15
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Re: New yacht - Old engine?

Count me in on the older mechanical engine. My Westerbeke has a Mitsubusi block and I can get parts for it anywhere. Unfortunately the newer ones (if you can get them in the states) have the newer techie junk. If the budget warrants it get a new beta marine based on the kubota block. KISS
(Keep it simple stupid)
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