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Old 11-02-2015, 16:04   #1
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Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

I'd like to know your experience(s) with specific engines that you feel are simply more troublesome than most.

I'm trying to determine if every company has their dogs, or if some brands are not dedicated to producing a quality engine.

Well?
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Old 11-02-2015, 16:16   #2
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

Here comes everyone's personal bias's.....I don't like green engines nor sail drives.
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Old 11-02-2015, 16:32   #3
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

A few generalizations based solely on what I've read here:
  • Volvo is OK but expensive
  • Old Yanmar good
  • Newer Yanmar (higher revving) not as well liked
  • Some of the oldies are getting harder to find replacement parts for (Westerbeke I think? Could be wrong there...)
  • Turbos are a bit more maintenance prone
  • Engines based on tractor motors have both parts available for many years and at cheaper "non-marine" prices if due-diligence is performed
  • Beta for a "drop-in" replacement seems a popular choice currently
You were looking for "specific" information - I've provided no help whatsoever!
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Old 11-02-2015, 16:47   #4
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by robert sailor View Post
Here comes everyone's personal bias's.....I don't like green engines nor sail drives.

sums it up


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Old 11-02-2015, 23:18   #5
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JulieMac View Post
I'd like to know your experience(s) with specific engines that you feel are simply more troublesome than most.

I'm trying to determine if every company has their dogs, or if some brands are not dedicated to producing a quality engine.

Well?
All the major companies have certain models that have issues. Personally I prefer good known brands that marinise kubota blocks , or Perkins . I would be cautious of any diesel either souped up to give excessive power ( some yanmars)

There's no easy answer
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Old 11-02-2015, 23:26   #6
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

2000 series Volvos.
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Old 12-02-2015, 04:22   #7
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

The ones that aren't maintained are most problematic, the ones that are maintained are least problematic
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Old 12-02-2015, 04:31   #8
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

There were a few well known attempts by well regarded car manufacturers to marinize their small block diesels with less than stellar results. Consequently one sees very few of their engines today. Namely - VW and BMW.

When my old Volvo MD5A gave up the ghost I was looking for a used replacement. There was a BMW one banger for sale on c-list for under $600 which looked like it had a nice rebuild. The guy during our back and forth emails was willing to part with it for about $400. I almost bought IT but decided to research a little further and found out that BMW's marine diesels are the laughing stock of diesel mechanics and were never very reliable even when new. Same for a VW's Pathfinder.
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Old 12-02-2015, 05:06   #9
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

First is part supplies determines a good motor. If you can not fix or get parts it will make any motor no good. Second is how you run your motor. It's like a dog it will reflect how it is treated and will determine how good of a motor you have in time. Maintenence is a big issue to got to be dillagent and thoro.

All in all for new I think Volvo is good just expensive. Saw no love on the new yanmars. If there's a 4 cyl cummins I would get one of those always liked a cummins. Kubota has many years in small diesels and are good working motors.
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Old 12-02-2015, 05:11   #10
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

Both boats I've have had had modern Yanmars and I have never had an engine problem.

That's all I can say on the subject.
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Old 12-02-2015, 07:18   #11
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

I've actually never had engine problems. I have had marinization problems and install problems, but the base engines have never given me problems.


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Old 12-02-2015, 07:32   #12
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

I thought my Westerbeke parts were way overpriced until I looked at Volvo prices...
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Old 12-02-2015, 08:15   #13
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

My opinion based on personal experience.

Westerbeke - generally good engines but they gouge terribly on parts. If I repower will NOT be a Westerbeke.

Volvo - had an MD17C years ago that I loved. Have heard a few complaints about QC in recent years. And Sanibel Sailor put it well. Volvo parts prices make Westerbeke look cheap.

Beta (marinized Kubota) - so far have never heard a complaint about engine quality, reliability and support from the US division. Cannot comment about support elsewhere. Parts are very reasonable and other than the marine specific parts (heat exchangers, raw water pumps, manifolds, etc) can be purchased from any Kubota tractor dealer.

Yanmar. Never owned one but had many friends with Yanmars. Older ones I never heard a complaint. Newer ones I hear a few. I have read a number of complaints that parts distribution is controlled and restricted to force you to buy from the local, authorized source ONLY. I have trouble supporting that kind of business model for something I buy.\

Perkins. Used to be one of the tops for small boat engines. Not sure where they stand these days.
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Old 12-02-2015, 08:21   #14
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

For medium to larger power boats: Cummins, MAN.

Volvo makes their money by selling their engines at a competitive price and then charges the hell out of you for parts.

Westerbeke does not make their own engines. They are re branded engines and parts from other companies.

Probably the best inboard diesels for small to medium sized sailboats: Yanmar


As for outboards....
Best: Yamaha and Honda

In between: Evinrude/Johnson, Mercury, Tohatsu

Worst: Suzuki
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Old 12-02-2015, 08:46   #15
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Re: Which Engine Manufactured is most problematic?

Most engines have their beginnings as non marine units. They were made for tractors and such. And most marine engines are not made by the parent company, they buy and marinize them and then paint them their special color. Here's an interesting link to this process and some of the popular engines.
Upgarding your diesel engine | Cruising World
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