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Old 31-05-2007, 18:13   #1
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Westerbeke 4-108 ?

New guy here. Ran across this forum & found it to be very informative. I'm hoping someone here can help me identify my motor. It's in a 26ft Navy Whaleboat which I have been told was built in the mid 70's or mid 80's. I get conflicting information. The motor serial number is ED22432J. Because I use the boat off shore 10 or 15 miles I was considering repowering. If this Westerbeke is as tough as the Perking 4-108 I think I will keep it. It's the typical Navy setup with the Paragon 220 box. Any thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated. If anyone can identify the motor year also. Mahalo & aloha.
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Old 31-05-2007, 18:45   #2
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that doesn't look like a normal Westerbeke serial number. The Westys that were built on Perkins were good motors. i'd be more concerned with the Paragon trans.
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Old 31-05-2007, 19:52   #3
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Thanks for the come back. The guy that was the Perkins dealer here for many years (now retired ) told me the Paragon trannies were noisy but bullet proof. I can attest to the noisy but don't know about bullet proof. I'm at the point that i'm going to have to spend some serious cash on this boat. The injection pump is sucking lube oil into the return. Fuel in tank turning black. So far no fuel in lube oil. Of course the motor is dripping a small amount of oil into the bilge. Other than that it seems to run fine. Starts right up & doesn't smoke. I would hate to rebuilt the injection pump unless I can reasonably expect 3 or 4 more years of service from motor & tranny. If I were to replace all what would be the best/easiest replacement. Some of the Whale boats I have seen have Borg/Warner velvet drives coupled up to the Westerbeke. Much quieter. My understanding is the Navy set these boats up to do 7 Knots under full load (8000 lbs displacement) @ 1325 RPM turning an 18X14 prop. I think the reduction is 2:1. The full load is 22 people ....I only run with 3 to 4 on board. I could use some suggestions from the experts. Mahalo & aloha
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Old 31-05-2007, 20:13   #4
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Aloha CaptG,
I'd always heard that the Westerbeke 4-108 and the Perkins were nearly the same with some US parts to make it legal to put in Navy boats like you have. That's just rumor that I've heard so don't take it as gospel. If it is the same or nearly the same I would never ever get rid of it. I've had Perkins and in my point of view they are the best. Hope you can find a good velvet drive if you don't like the paragon. I've got an old velvet drive that needs reassembly. 3:1 with a drop down shaft. I also have an old cassel v-drive that I'm trying to get rid of. Let me know if you're interested in any of it for parts or spares.
Kind Regards,
JohnL on the Big Island
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Old 31-05-2007, 21:06   #5
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Aloha JohnL,
You have the same info I've been getting re Westerbeke & Perkins. I've had 2 Perkins 6-354's in a larger boat and loved them so I'm hoping to live with this 4-108 for a long time. Had trouble finding anyone here who seemed to know how to rebuild this injection pump. I did find a shop in Wilmington,CA who knows these boats & this motor inside out. They specialize in injection pumps. I will probably sent mine off to them soon. I don't have anything against the Paragon tranny, but I only know what I've been told. Had not heard anything bad until today. Would like to hear more opinions & specifics on that. Mahalo
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Old 01-06-2007, 02:02   #6
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CaptG,
Good luck on getting info about the Westerbekes and hope you'll share whatever you find out. There is a guy who does injector pumps here on the Big Island. He did a Bosch pump for my Mercedes and did a really great job. Not cheap though.
Always wanted an old motor whaleboat or Captain's gig. Just thinking about them reminds me of Liberty Call in some of the foreign ports.
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Old 01-06-2007, 06:17   #7
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I'd get the pump reworked and keep pluging on. The paragon should hold up. The problem comes in in getting parts for it when it does have a problem. A Velvet Drive will work nicely with the 4-108. It's heavy but cheap, plentiful and easyto rebuild.
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Old 01-06-2007, 11:56   #8
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JohnL...I spent 2 years looking for a navy whaleboat in decent shape. Don't mind spending the $$$ to fix her up but finding good people to do the work that I'm not able to do is not easy. All the people that I've known & trusted to work on my boats over the years have all retired or expired. I've rebuilt a few motors over the years but IP's are another matter.

Pat...thanks for the advice. I had a mechanic take a look at the tranny a while back as I was concerned about the noise. I've had velvet drives in the past so the growling of this Paragon gave me cause for concern. He assured me it was ok & noise was normal. Being skeptical I talked to a mechanic I have used for years (now retired) & he told me they were noisy but bulletproof. So I will have the IP & injectors rebuilt & keep on chuggin'.
Thanks again to both of you for your help.
Aloha.....Capt Gerry
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Old 01-06-2007, 17:11   #9
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Aloha Capt G,
Good decision!! Where do you keep your whaleboat?
Keep us posted.
JohnL
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Old 01-06-2007, 23:05   #10
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JohnL...I was fortunate to buy a house on the marina front in Hawaii Kai many year ago so my boat is moored behind the house. Very convenient. By the way, one of my old boats has been on your island for the last 5 or 6 years. It's a 41ft Funai sampan powered by a 671 GMC. It was a great boat....rode like a Rolls Royce but the upkeep was killing me. Fiberglass is much easier. Where are you moored?

Aloha.........Gerry
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Old 02-06-2007, 09:14   #11
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Welcome to cruisersforum, CaptG.

I am no stranger in riding around on those US Navy motor whale boats. I have thousands of hours on them. And know how they handle.

I wish you luck in you, getting yours up and running. I really believe, you got yourself a great boat there.
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Old 02-06-2007, 12:41   #12
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CaptainK....She is a solid little boat. A little wet in choppy seas but I just consider that "saltwater therapy". I have been running her offshore of the island of Oahu
10 to 15 miles for about a year with no problems but do need to get the injection pump done. I'm still trying to determine build year of the hull & motor. Keep getting conflicting info. When I look at parts diagrams for the motor it appears to be pre 1975 but based on motor serial number ED22432J I have been told it is a mid 1980's vintage. Based on the navy hull number I have also been told the hull is a 1986. I figure I'll get a verifiable answer sooner or later if I keep digging. Aloha
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Old 02-06-2007, 15:53   #13
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Aloha CaptG,
I'm here in Paradise Park near Keaau with my boat in my yard and making repairs. We have a small yacht club that has 4 anchored boats in Reeds Bay, Hilo. Wow, that is a nice area you live in. Back in my running days the Honolulu marathon course and Tin Man triathlon and several relays and half marathons used to run through your neighborhood. Beautiful area. I used to live in Hauula near Laie before moving to the Big Island.
I'll bet the Sampan was a great at sea boat.
"Lucky we live Hawaii",
JohnL
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Old 09-06-2007, 23:35   #14
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If it is a mechanical Paragon, keep a close eye on the adjustments. Once it starts to slip, it can be a disaster. Please don't ask me how I know....M
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Old 10-06-2007, 13:36   #15
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M.....sounds like you've had a bad experience with the mechanical gearbox. I hope it didn't fail you at the worst possible time..... Murphy's law.
I have the navy spec P220 hydraulic gearbox & it is supposed to be bullet proof. I'll find out in due time. My experience with boats built to navy specs is that they tend to be over built.

Aloha............Gerry
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