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Old 01-10-2017, 07:47   #1
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Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

I think I have finally decided to replace my Lambordini 2004 with a Beta 50. I have a few questions maybe someone can help with.

1) Gear ratio is currently 2.5 and the B50 only comes with 2.45. I think that is close enough to where I don't need to re-pitch my max prop. Lombardini tops out at 3,000 RPM and the B50 2,800--should be a 5% reduction in top prop speed. I think it should be OK as is, any thoughts?
2) The standard alternator is 70a but they have an option for 120a. I eventually plan to get my boat self sufficient on solar and don't have a generator. The though of having to run the engine less hours to get a charge on those cloudy days is appealing... Is the larger alternator worth it? I have found a few articles on CF and there seems to be a lot of trade offs (one belt may not be able to handle 120a, don't actually get the full amp rating) and they were all written when solar systems were much more expensive than they are today. For the extra GBP350 I could install another 1-200w of solar (but may not have the space)...
3) They offer a flexible coupling, but I can't find much of anything online about how useful they are for more than 2 cylinder engines. They are cheap, are they also a good investment?
4) Current exhaust is 60mm, B50 uses 50mm. Do I need to replace all the exhaust piping? I was thinking I might be able to find a muffler / water lock that has 50mm input and 60mm output so I can reuse everything down stream.
5) Any advice on what to do with the old engine? It actually runs OK right now, but needs a rebuild and the transmission gets stuck in gear. I think if the boat were in the Mediterranean I could sell it, but in Singapore no one has even heard of the brand...
6) The opening of my engine housing is 52cm wide. The Drawings of the B50 say it is 573cm wide, but the widest parts are the alternator and air intake. You think I can remove those two to get it 53cm narrower? Alternate is to cut the hole bigger, but of course I want to avoid that...

Thanks for any input.
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Old 01-10-2017, 09:47   #2
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

I am currently replacing a westerbeke 33 with a beta 35.
1. Call max prop - they can probably give you the best answer.
2. I thought it was worth it - I also got a regulator (Balmar MC-614). If you go with the 120 Beta will install with the serpentine belt that should handle the load.
3. I don't know - I have the same question.
4. I would call beta - I doubt keeping the hose would be a problem. Though you may want to replace the hose if it is very old anyway.
5. No opinion.
6. Call Beta. The engine drawings are not completely clear.
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Old 01-10-2017, 14:49   #3
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

1. The difference in shaft RPM at full throttle is only 60 RPM....not even an inch of pitch worth. Try it with the existing pitch and see how it goes before messing with the prop.

2. Go with the big alternator, especially if the price includes the serpentine belt!

3. If you have a flex mounted engine, and a flexible, hose mounted stuffing box, then avoid the flex coupling. If you have a flex mounted engine and a fixed stuffing box, then go with the flex coupling.

4. Run a 50 mm hose to the water lift muffler and install a 50mm/60mm adapter just before the muffler.

5. Want ads or Craigs list or whatever they have there.

6. A little confusion here...Beta drawings say 573 mm, but Beta sales sheet says
554 mm. In any event, the wide part on one side is the alternator, and the wide part on the other side is the air filter, but the alternator is at the front of the engine and the air filter further back, so it may be possible to wiggle the thing in without removing any parts...but it's no big deal to remove stuff.

DougR
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Old 01-10-2017, 15:15   #4
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

Call Stanley at Beta for info on the exhaust and size. Stanley is a excellent resource and comes with every Beta
engine. The RD flexible coupling makes alignment a snap. It still needs near perfect alignment but the coupling makes taking measurements with a feeler gauge easy. Make sure whatever alternator you end up with is driven by a serpentine belt,not a V belt. I seem to remember when I ordered my Beta 50 I needed to upgrade the alternator to get the serpentine belt.
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Old 02-10-2017, 10:32   #5
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

I went from a Westerbeke W-52 to a Beta 60, which is pretty close in many aspects to the Beta 43 and 50 (same "family"). I went with a second power take-off because I had the room, and went with a hydraulic transmission mated to an Aquadrive universal coupler plus a new shaft, a PSS and a four-bladed Variprop. So basically...everything from PTO to prop hub. I am very happy with the result. The second PTO is so I can have a second alternator of smaller size (although probably a large case one) as I like the redundancy for off-the-beaten path passage making.

The all-solar idea has merit, but if you wish to equalize your battery bank away from a dock (and the proper settings on your charger), you may want the alternator of heft and external regulation for that task.

If you are interested, I did about a dozen blog posts on repowering starting here. Please ignore the missing photos: Photobucket ate quite a few and it's a pain to manually reload them. https://alchemy2009.blogspot.ca/2013...ing-right.html
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Old 02-10-2017, 10:50   #6
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

For what it's worth, my old engine ended up in the St. Thomas landfill. Maybe someone will pay you for it. Don't break your heart over it.

You've gotten good answers to your other questions, I think. You probably can't tell about fitting into the physical space until you get it in the boat and start wrestling with it. That's when the real fun begins!
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Old 02-10-2017, 10:58   #7
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

2. I repowered an elderly bukh 20 with a beta 35, great engine. Upgraded the stock 65a with a 120A. On reflection with 225Ah of trojan batteries it wasn't really needed, unless severely discharged the batteries will never accept anything like that. But.... it did include upgrading to a notched belt in the price so wasn't that expensive really plus the alternator won't ever be working too hard so would probably do the same again. Just don't think you'll run the engine much less if any to get up to a decent state of charge with a bigger alt.

3. I went for the R & D flexible coupling, worked OK and wasn't too hard to do the alignment. I've heard it said that they help to cushion the torque a bit on the engine but no idea if that's for real.

6. Looking at my 35 the feet look to be the widest part - you'll gain a bit taking off the air filter & adjusting the alternator all the way in but might need to take off the feet one side to squeeze it in. I drew mine up in 3d cad to check, tight fit!
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Old 02-10-2017, 11:00   #8
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

Thanks for the input. I spoke with Andrew at Beta who gave the following feedback:

2) 120a alternator includes serpentine belt - I am going for this option. I suppose that belt should last a very long time...
3) Still undecided on the flex coupling. Beta says they are good, but not required. Mostly I am worried about length as the B50 is slightly longer than the Lambordini and I would rather not cut the shaft. Most likely I will give it a miss.
4) Beta says the bigger hose is OK and I found an adapter that I will install just before the waterlock / muffler: https://www.jamestowndistributors.co...t.do?pid=11718
5) No idea what I will do with the current engine and Tia Bu is probably right about the landfill. Singapore is not exactly a DIY friendly place and most commercial applications would want a new engine. I may just go to the local Bumboat marina and see if anyone wants it for free...
6) As expected the air filter and alternator can be removed / moved to make the engine a bit smaller, but no one knows how much or if it will matter until the engine is in the boat.

Everything else I have done on this new to me boat has been pretty straight forward and predictable. This repower is a whole different animal and I am admittedly being a little paranoid. Thanks for the help and I will be putting the deposit down tomorrow.

S/V Alchemy - I will check out your blog tomorrow. Thanks for the input!
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Old 02-10-2017, 11:56   #9
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

I replaced a Perkins 4-108 with a Beta 50 in 2003. I still have the same engine with about 4000 hours on it. I am very happy with it. I was fortunate to be in England at the time and worked directly with the factory for some custom modifications.

Because I have a "V" drive transmission the engine is mounted backwards from a conventional install. I have both a remote mounted oil filter and fuel filter. I also had a second alternator bracket installed. The second alternator is belted to spin fast enough at idle for full output. The downside of this is belt wear and belt dust. I always carry at least two spares for this six groove belt.

One of the best customizations they offer is custom engine mounts. This saves a huge amount of time and effort modifying the engine beds. To do this you must measure your installation very carefully. I did this many times until I was confident that I had it right.

I installed this engine myself, only hiring the crane to lift out the old engine and a few day later lift in the new. The key to doing this is thinking about and planning your install well ahead of time. I spent more time studying the install than doing it. Well worth the effort since I had nearly everything I needed to do the job and there were no surprises. The old engine was craned out on a Friday. Over the weekend the engine space was scrubbed and painted. Holes were drilled and tapped for the new engine mounts. On Monday the new engine was craned in. By Wednesday it was test started. Beta had a mechanic come out and review my work for warranty coverage, he and I started the engine for the first time. There was till a lot to do so it was another week before we motored away.

Fourteen years on and the engine is still running well. I have had to rebuild the raw water pump and replaced the fuel injectors (only because or the service recommendations). Recently I had to replace the tachometer. For fourteen years a 4000 hours that is nothing.
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Old 12-12-2017, 15:19   #10
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

Whats missing in this photo?? Old engine out and new sound proofing installed. They yard is adjusting the stringers and then cleaning up the bilge today / tomorrow. Engine should be in by the end of the week. Process to buy the Beta 50 was very easy, although I didn't order a wiring harness extension to had to expedite shipping--that cost more than the harness. I hope to be sailing by Christmas!

Why is the photo showing rotated incorrectly? Sorry for that, I don't know how to fix. Rest assured, my boat is right side up.
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Old 12-12-2017, 19:35   #11
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

Your going to be happy with the Beta 50. I installed ours 2 years ago and haven't looked back, it is an excellent engine in every way.
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Old 12-12-2017, 21:34   #12
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

My Beta 50 came with the larger alternator from Iskra. Beta was able to source a brush block which made the conversion to external regulation a piece of cake.
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Old 13-12-2017, 06:56   #13
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

The valuable parts on your Lombardini are the exhaust manifold, head, and transmission. Pull them off and list them on Ebay as used. You might get lucky.
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Old 15-12-2017, 00:40   #14
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

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ID:	160548Progress. Engine is in and bolted to the stringers. Doing all the misc connections now.

The Lombardini was a very compact engine. The Beta 50 barely fitsóbut importantly it does fit. Will have to investigate the maintenance access once the crew stops working on it. Should be floating and running in a few more days.
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Old 15-12-2017, 08:01   #15
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Re: Repowering with Beta 50 - misc questions and accessories?

You will enjoy the Beta, we just replaced a Westerbeke 50 (41hp) with a Beta 35 and took off down south last month. Just did the first oil change. What's great, is how easy maintenance is, all done for the front of the engine. We did the 120amp alt, with external regulator. Our old motor we put on here in the classified ads and sold after a month. Just happens a boat with the same Westerbeke die while in transit in our area. Sold it two days before we left town. Ours was in pretty good shape, not needing a rebuild. Yours is going to be a hard sell.
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