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Old 06-06-2010, 23:12   #1
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Volvo Engine Has to Go

Considering buying a Monohull that requires a new engine. It's got a Volvo MD11C with saildrive. I hear people have replaced this engine with a Sole diesel. Anybody out there who has done this? How complex and how expensive?
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Old 06-06-2010, 23:27   #2
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I would at least consider a Yanmar.
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Old 07-06-2010, 00:42   #3
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Any repower is going to be complex and expensive. I haven't any experience with the swap you are proposing.

Why the repower and not just overhaul the Volvo.
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Old 07-06-2010, 02:06   #4
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Any repower is going to be complex and expensive. I haven't any experience with the swap you are proposing.

Why the repower and not just overhaul the Volvo.
I have heard Volvo parts are like gold...but I agree...rebuild if you can...

Any re-power to a different motor not done buy yourself will rack up several thousand in ancillary expenses by paid mechanics.
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Old 07-06-2010, 09:42   #5
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The boat needs another 10 ponies. Why put money into the Volvo.
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Old 07-06-2010, 10:40   #6
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Why does it need so much extra horse power? I'm sure you know that your boat will only go so fast no matter how much extra power you try to apply. I don't like saildrives much but there are lots of happy owners so it's just my personal dislike. As for "Volvo" parts they are outrageously expensive especially when you can buy ALL the same bearings and such from most any supply house. Don't be swayed by the volvo sales guys telling you that the parts they sell are somehow different other than the packaging. It just ain't so unless it is a Volvo specific part. Bearings and seals(and probably most other parts) can be cross referenced by any decent parts house. Please note I said "DECENT" parts house..............m
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Old 07-06-2010, 10:49   #7
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The boat needs another 10 ponies. Why put money into the Volvo.
If that's the case go for it...I know what difference that can make head on the wind trying to make port...In 47knots 2/3 throttle was not moving us..I was glad I had more power at my command.
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Old 08-06-2010, 12:04   #8
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Ask yourself again. Why does it need 10 extra ponies? Will the boat not get to hull speed? Maybe the engine is tired and not giving you all the ponies she would if she was in good shape?

I have Vovlo engines and yes the parts are expensive but Yanmar is figuring out how to do the same and the gap is closing. Volvo is not a dirty word. You can probably rebuild for 2.5K repower will be 4 to 5 times that much.

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Old 09-06-2010, 00:52   #9
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Extra ponies

Basically it's a Tartan 37, same hull anyways. That's around 16,000 lbs. I would think most agree 23 ponies is not enough.
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Old 09-06-2010, 05:32   #10
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If the saildrive leg and transmission, probably a 110S or 120S, is OK and it is only the engine that is a problem Beta Marine have a series of engines available for repowers that mate to the Volvo saildrive and associated mounting system.
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Old 09-06-2010, 17:35   #11
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Did the designer build the boat with a "docking only" lightweight engine intentionally for racing purposes?

Or would an inadequate engine make you ask, did this designer make mistakes?
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Old 11-06-2010, 08:09   #12
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I think that many have a tendancy to overquote on required HP. My 30'er has a Yanmar 2GM (15HP max, 13HP continous). It drived me at hull speed easily in normal conditions, and only looses a knot or so, in 25 kt headwinds. I think 23hp for a 37' hull is reasonable, if the engine works properly. If it needs replacement, I may opt up one model for added insurance of power in very strong headwinds. I would not jump up a great deal in HP though, as you will then be running the engine at a low rpm range in anything but a very strong headwind. A much larger engine may not fit easily into the engine compartment, without a lot of modification.

For me the engine is auxiliary power. It needs to be reliable, and able to move the boat reasonably well, but only for about 30 - 50 hours / year, as we are normally sailing.
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Old 11-06-2010, 08:40   #13
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Here's a link to the Beta engine site. Post there to see what size engine Stanley recommends:

Beta Marine Engines

I would bet that they have repowered a similar, Tartan 37 already, and what size engine the used.
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Old 11-06-2010, 08:52   #14
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Displacement - 16,000 lb

Thumb calculation min: 24hp
Thumb calculation max: 32hp

If I were refitting, I'd get something close to 32 hp max since I need the extra power in currents and tide where I want to be. Yannie 3YM30C max is 29hp @ 3200-3600rpm. 3JH4CE is 39hp @ 3000rpm. I'd go for the 3JH4CE at less RPMS.

Other options:

Volvo - D1-30 27.1hp @ 3200 rpm
Volvo - D1-40 38hp @ 3200 rpm

Not sure how difficult it would be to replace yourself. Thought saildrives were rather easy to install or retrofit? another option might be to glass in and put in a regular diesel engine - size and weight distribution.

Saildrives concern me. I just dont trust them. I need to be pursuaded.

If I were repowering I would also consider Beta Marine. I don't know if they have saildrives, but repowering a regular engine that would be my first choice.
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Old 11-06-2010, 08:59   #15
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If the Volvo engine is still in production, I would rebuild. If the block is out of production, replace.

My boat had a Westerbeke that hadn't been in production since 1987. Parts were available, but the prices were beyond ridiculous. I ended up buying a salvage Phasor (same as a Beta Marine BZ482). The Kubota Z482 it's based on has been in production for years and is still in production, so parts are available and cheap.

My costs were:
complete salvage motor, wiring and control panel $500
Transmission rebuild kit $130 (which I ended up not using because the trans worked fine once it got a thorough cleaning)
Machine shop costs for heat exchanger repair after I broke a header stud off in it while disassembling the engine $400
Replacement Kubota Z482 bobtail & freight $1950.
Two cans of Kubota blue paint (which is actually green if you ask me) $20
Remanufactured starter from ebay $92
Remanufactured alternator from ebay $84
Air cleaner as the salvage motor didn't have one $40

Total cost for brand new marinized engine $3216.

That's still less than the parts costs quoted for the rebuild of my Westerbeke. It's also significantly less than the $6500 or so quoted for a new Westerbeke or Beta Marine.

Alignment took a long time, but the hardest part of installation was lifting the motors in and out of the cabin.

If you don't mind doing the work and you're in no rush, check your salvage yard, watch the ads on ebay and craigslist, and see what you can find. But again, it's only a good deal if the motor is still in production.
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