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Old 20-06-2008, 20:10   #1
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Perkins 4-107 ?

I'm shopping for my next boat, and I'm looking at a 1973 sailboat with a Perkins 4-107 engine. It would be my first diesel, so I'm leery of anything old -- the issue of reliability is important, but the issue of attaining reasonably priced replacement parts is even more important.

On this site, some owners have spoken about the Perkins 4-108 as being "bulletproof" and having a wide availability of parts, but what about the 4-107? (Some of the info I googled up on the net in general seems to indicate that the 4-107 and 4-108 are close to being the same model.)

Any warnings or endorsements for the Perkins 4-107?
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Old 20-06-2008, 20:18   #2
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Is it original? or was it replaced/rebuilt at some time? How many hours? Is the boat over propped? How was it maintained? You can usually tell by how well the rest of the boat was maintained.
Hours and maintenance have more to do with how long it will last than anything else.
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Old 20-06-2008, 23:41   #3
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The 107 is a good engine also. Easterly has given you the rest of the deal. Based on the joe average of about 200hrs/yr for most sail boats, the engine could be around 1000hrs and so in good condition as far as wear goes. But lack of maintenance can negate that quickly.
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Old 21-06-2008, 02:00   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buddy_Y View Post
Some of the info I googled up on the net in general seems to indicate that the 4-107 and 4-108 are close to being the same model.
The 4-107 has the same block as the 4-108. Perkins gained extra HP with a higher output Injector Pump and Injectors. One of the main plusses of a 4-108 is the availability of specialist parts companies like Transatlantic Diesels and Foley (both sell parts online and are reliable and knowledgable) at very competitive prices. I have found Transatlantic to be great to deal with when I rebuilt my 4-108 last year.

The 4-108 is a very old design now but its easy to work on and will keep going with less than perfect maintenance (not that I would neglect such a thing of course!).

Sure they are noisy, leak a bit if you aren't carefull with gaskets but that's a good incentive to shut it down as soon as the batteries are charged and get sailing.

Good luck with your purchase.
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Old 22-06-2008, 11:10   #5
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Gotcha -- thanks!

Alright, now I at least know that it's worth going to see the boat (and I know more questions to ask about the engine when I do so). Thanks for the wisdom!
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Old 22-06-2008, 11:23   #6
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perkins 4-108

there is no such thing as a perkins 4-107. there is only a 4-108.
somebody mis-typed.

there is, however, a WESTERBEKE 4-107.

people get these confused quite a lot.

both engines are fabulous and with just a little care will last 100 years or more.

parts are easy to come by for both engines.

i've had both, a perkins 4-108 in a nice 41' ketch i once had, and a westerbeke 4-107 in a 37' sloop i used to have. both engines are superb.

the '4' signifies the number of cylinders in the engine.

good luck with your search.
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Old 22-06-2008, 12:43   #7
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I can assure you that there is indeed a Perkins 4.107. Yes the 4 represents the No. of cylinders and the 107/108 represents the cubic capacity. Perkins have service manuals for both engines.
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Old 22-06-2008, 19:20   #8
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And more 107s

I have found that you have to rebuid the 4-107 at least once every 30 years or so.... or at least repaint it....
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Old 22-06-2008, 19:28   #9
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Bet this is news to Perkins

and the drivers of thousands of London Taxis in the '70s.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Eventide View Post
there is no such thing as a perkins 4-107. there is only a 4-108.
somebody mis-typed.

there is, however, a WESTERBEKE 4-107.

people get these confused quite a lot.

both engines are fabulous and with just a little care will last 100 years or more.

parts are easy to come by for both engines.

i've had both, a perkins 4-108 in a nice 41' ketch i once had, and a westerbeke 4-107 in a 37' sloop i used to have. both engines are superb.

the '4' signifies the number of cylinders in the engine.

good luck with your search.
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Old 10-01-2011, 21:20   #10
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I own a boat with a perkins 107. It is a 1973. the number 107 is part of the engine number stamped on the injection pump side of the block near the top. Hyster forklifts also used this engine in their forklifts. The manual with the hyster part numbers are available through a hyster to anyone who has access to their database through "hypass" I think. I found the manual and copied it from the archives in the basement NACCO (north american coal company) formerly HYSTER (counter balance development center) library at the cbdc center in fairview oregon. ask for kerry rose and tell him davy jones sent you. Good luck) I have this manual but don't know what model forklift used this engine. I am sure the Perkins dealer has this info with their part numbers as well. I replaced the throttle shaft seals (cav lucas causing starting problems due to leak off) recently for 16 bucks which fixed the fuel leak and was able to seal the side cover gasket (engine oil leak) with lots of high temp silicone seal and a can of brake kleen to clean the gasket area, which leaves the engine virtually leak free after almost 40 years of service. I have personally used this engine a minimum of 1000 hours since I bought the boat in 2003. Good luck with this engine. I have been a ase certified working diesel mechanic since 1984 after graduating from a diesel college in 1984. davejdude <at> yahoo <dot> com
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Old 10-01-2011, 21:41   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eventide View Post
there is no such thing as a perkins 4-107. there is only a 4-108.
somebody mis-typed.

there is, however, a WESTERBEKE 4-107.

people get these confused quite a lot.

both engines are fabulous and with just a little care will last 100 years or more.

parts are easy to come by for both engines.

i've had both, a perkins 4-108 in a nice 41' ketch i once had, and a westerbeke 4-107 in a 37' sloop i used to have. both engines are superb.

the '4' signifies the number of cylinders in the engine.

good luck with your search.
if the engine is blue and says perkins, is a perkins. if is red should say westerbeke..
\both will last forever. i have westerfreke dead engine in bits as spares for a perkins i got when previous owner blew ded red to hellandbank...they are interchangeable to a point.....
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Old 10-01-2011, 21:50   #12
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Originally Posted by Eventide
there is no such thing as a perkins 4-107. there is only a 4-108.
somebody mis-typed.

there is, however, a WESTERBEKE 4-107.

people get these confused quite a lot.
............"

Yep. Sombodys confused allright.

Minggat started out with a Perkins 4-107. My manuals (I have multipal) refers to the 4-107 and 4-108. I bought all parts for my 4-107 and and now 4-108 from the Perkins shop.

According to the shop I deal with, the only diff between the 4-107 and 108 are wet sleeves in the 107 and dry sleeves in the 108. The injector pump is not what makes the difference between the two, but there certainly are different pumps for the same engine.
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Old 10-01-2011, 21:50   #13
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The main difference between the 4.107 and 4.108 is the 107 has wet sleeves and the 108 dry.
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Old 10-01-2011, 22:03   #14
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Perkins
In 1959, a British industrial company Perkins introduced the 4-99, a diesel engine for general applications especially power tractors. Perkins, not realizing the marine applications of the 4-99, sold the US import rights to Westerbeke. By the mid-1960′s, Perkins took back control and became a fierce competitor offering the Perkins 4-99 for marine use. In 1997, Caterpillar bought Perkins.

Westerbeke
Westerbeke, the “Poor man’s Perkins,” does not have a good reputation. They did well for awhile until Perkins introduced the engine themselves. Then, Westerbeke combined blocks and parts of other manufacturers to ween of their dependency on Perkins. Some of these engines are the kiss of death for a boat like in the Hylas 44. Westerbeke produced better received generators. In 1990, they bought Universal mixing in their engine parts.
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Old 11-01-2011, 01:00   #15
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Perkins Reliability Questions

Howdy-

There are a number of things to look for when shopping for a boat, and especially when it comes time to evaluate a diesel.

If you're comfortable around engines and a knucklebuster by choice, you'll have no difficulties with the 4-107. If you're at the other end of the spectrum, and you've indicated that you've never owned a diesel before, I suggest a thorough survey of the auxiliary, along with a thorough survey of the boat by someone certified to provide that service. Most towns through out the world stock some Perkins parts. Heck, they were even used for a few Series I and II Land Rovers.

I just completed a rebuild of my Westerbeke 30 (VERY similar to the 107 and 108 Perkins block). Yes, many parts are interchangeable. This is basically a British engine, and the parts are priced a bit on the high side for my blood, but anything labeled "Marine" is going to carry a health sticker price.

You did not indicate if the engine had many hours on the Hobbs meter. A low hour engine in a boat of this age could suggest that it wasn't run enough and lubricated regularly. A high Hobbs meter reading you might think would be a bad indicator, but I conjecture that it is actually a good thing. A high reading would suggest that the boat was run regularly, and that there's little chance that corrosion set-in, in places like the water lift muffler and/or exhaust manifold. What condition is the water pump">Raw Water Pump Impeller? How are the hoses and belts? Is the engine clean looking and appear to be well maintained? Is the gasket material soft and pliable? Are there maintenance records for the Perkins? Are there any noticeable fuel and or leaks/ordors or stains in the engine room?

This are the sorts of questions I'd be looking to ask myself when evaluating a boat for purchase.

Best of Luck and happy hunting!

Chuck Bullett
S/V The Chester P

PS: Pictures of the Westerbeke 30 rebuild are on my flickr page. Go to flickr dot com, then search for my name followed by forward slash photos, the another forward slash and my name spelled out in one word. A search for "Westerbeke 30 rebuild" may get you there too.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Buddy_Y View Post
I'm shopping for my next boat, and I'm looking at a 1973 sailboat with a Perkins 4-107 engine. It would be my first diesel, so I'm leery of anything old -- the issue of reliability is important, but the issue of attaining reasonably priced replacement parts is even more important.

On this site, some owners have spoken about the Perkins 4-108 as being "bulletproof" and having a wide availability of parts, but what about the 4-107? (Some of the info I googled up on the net in general seems to indicate that the 4-107 and 4-108 are close to being the same model.)

Any warnings or endorsements for the Perkins 4-107?
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