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Old 18-08-2015, 15:46   #1
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engine mount fix

Inherited a beat up 1970 Ericson 35-II which I have fixed up pretty well. Just found out the engine mounts are shot. The previous owner replaced the original Atomic gas engine with a Westerbeke diesel which is bigger and heavier. To make it work they fashioned four steel feet and fiberglassed them to the hull. They supported two 2" by 4" oak beams to which the usual engine mounts were bolted. The salt water in the bilge has rusted the steel feet so the whole mount system is compromised. The yard estimates $13,000 to pull the engine and fabricate a new mounting system. Way too expensive for such an old boat! How about I make a dam in the bilge and pour cement under the 2 by 4's so they are supported by solid cement? Any thoughts?

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Old 18-08-2015, 15:53   #2
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Re: engine mount fix

How about epoxy and a filler instead of cement? Still might need to pull the engine but you probably work cheap. Wow, $13K. So much for a free boat.

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Old 18-08-2015, 16:18   #3
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Re: engine mount fix

That reminds me....some time ago there was this stuff:

Here's the CF mention (sorry about the cobwebs):

Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Has anybody had experience with it?
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Old 18-08-2015, 16:37   #4
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Re: engine mount fix

$13,000? Where's the marina? Hollywood? Manhattan?

No not cement.

Can you disconnect the engine and jack it up off the bad mounts? If you can get the engine out of the way then build box section rails with polyester resin. Build a box section around a piece of pressure treated wood and then attach new motor mounts with lag bolts.

You can do the whole thing for a few hundred. Or I'll do it for $12,900.
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Old 18-08-2015, 16:48   #5
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Re: engine mount fix

Buy some marine ply, a couple of gallons of West, some fiberglass mat and make some 4"thick laminated stringers wide enough to support the engine.

Looking for another pretty place to work on the boat.
Working on spending my children's inheritance.
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Old 18-08-2015, 16:51   #6
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Re: engine mount fix

What SkipMac says, or I'll do it for $12,800

Lifting the engine with the boom and halyards isn't that hard, put it in the cabin or cockpit (depending on how it lifts and what is easiest). Rebuild the beds. You could probably get 10 or 20 years out of just replacing the steel feet and the wood that is already there, or get 30 or more years out of building new beds out of materials that don't rot or degrade.
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Old 18-08-2015, 16:57   #7
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Re: engine mount fix

Can you weasel a camera around in there and get some pictures?

If you could show people the situation you can probably get some good solutions.
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Old 18-08-2015, 17:14   #8
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Re: engine mount fix

These guys are charging you waaay too much, including the better quotes above.

My quote is $5K plus travelling Of course travelling from Oz will be about $4K

Seriously, all good suggestions so far; in the big scheme of things, this isn't a really difficult job to undertake.

Good luck with the project.
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Old 18-08-2015, 17:40   #9
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Re: engine mount fix

This is a big project, but you can probably do it yourself. For sure you need to remove the engine and that can be done with block and tackle and the boom probably.

Take photos and lots or measurements especially if the shaft alignment is OK now because you want to get it back in the same position as it is now.

Then you need to find new mounts that can be bolted to your engine and compute how far the new stringers need to be (top of). Make a dimensioned drawing to follow for the front and rear mounts.

The clean out the mess down to the hull and prepare it for some new fore and aft stringers to mount the mounts on to. You'll likely have to scribe the bottom of the stringers... oak? to fit the hull and provide a level (enough) top for the stringers. Check and double check the measurements and the glass the stringers to the hull. You light want to glass in plates with tapped holes to bolt the mounts to. Maybe large lag bolts would do too. Ask around for advice on that.

The positioning of the mounts is obviously very critical and so you need to follow your measured drawing. Mounts do allow for up and down and athwartship movement... somewhat.

You will probably connect the mounts to the engine and then lower it down onto the stringers. The mounts should pretty closely align with the mounting holes. You can then begin the actual final alignment. This will involve getting the coupling to meet properly. You'll need a feeler gauges.

This is not rocket science... just patience. Plan it and have everything you need for each stage. Take your time. You can do this and when you are done... you will know you did it right. You need some heft box wrenches too.
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Old 18-08-2015, 19:48   #10
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Re: engine mount fix

This is not a difficult process. Slow, labour intensive, sure. I just went through this process with an engine that weighs just short of half a metric ton. Did the whole job on my own just using patience.

General procedure I followed was:
1. Made a jig to record the position of the engine. Put this in a safe spot.
2. Put a pair of timber planks under the engine to take the weight. Removed the engine mounts and put two steel rhs beams along side the engine to prevent it leaning over.
3. Slid the engine forward into the cabin on the timber using a four to one block and tackle plus a small trailer winch.
4. Remade the stringers (in my case they were changed to suit soft engine mounts) plus dealt with some "issues" in the rear keel area.
5. Reversed the procedure.

The point of all this was that the whole process was manageable by one person despite the weight of the engine and gearbox and moving it out of the way completely made the remanufacturing of the stringers a breeze.

If you can safely and easily slide the engine out of the way then you have time and a safe working environment to deal with the stringers properly and you are not risking life, limb and boat by dangling an engine off anything that might break.

The hardest part for me was getting in and out of the cabin with the engine in the way as there was no room for the steps. Standing on the engine is an invitation to disaster.

$13k would be plenty of incentive for me to tackle this project. And if you've managed to rejuvenate the boat yourself to this point then this will be hard work but very rewarding


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Old 19-08-2015, 05:16   #11
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Re: engine mount fix

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, flcorah.

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"If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time/$ to fix it?"

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