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Old 10-04-2013, 16:06   #331
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Here's hoping its just a filter or fuel issue and NOT something expensive!
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Old 11-04-2013, 03:47   #332
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Engine dies then find batt is dead, my guess is alternator went or lost ground. Nice place to be broke. I miss the spanish moss and the live oaks!
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Old 11-04-2013, 08:35   #333
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

I missed the live oaks, too, by a whisker! (Not really) Checked out the prices for a new alternator, $450-$700, for the Westerbeke OEM. I have seen other brands (Delco and such) for as low as $150 that say they are replacements, but I don't know if they will be physically the same size. I don't want to get one just to find that I need to modify the mounting. The West Marine price is the $700, Discount marine is $650.

Don't know too much about diesel engines but I thought they didn't need electricity to run (no spark plugs, etc.). Is that correct?

BTW the batter is reading 13.3VDC but it hardly turns the motor over. And over the past year I remember it reading someplace north of 14VDC.
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:50   #334
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

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Originally Posted by Don1500 View Post
I missed the live oaks, too, by a whisker! (Not really) Checked out the prices for a new alternator, $450-$700, for the Westerbeke OEM. I have seen other brands (Delco and such) for as low as $150 that say they are replacements, but I don't know if they will be physically the same size. I don't want to get one just to find that I need to modify the mounting. The West Marine price is the $700, Discount marine is $650.

Don't know too much about diesel engines but I thought they didn't need electricity to run (no spark plugs, etc.). Is that correct?

BTW the batter is reading 13.3VDC but it hardly turns the motor over. And over the past year I remember it reading someplace north of 14VDC.
Hi Don,

Have a Westerbeke in my boat and am constantly amazed at what they quote for some of the parts. I have learned that many of them; starters, alternators, raw water pumps, etc are standard items and can be had for a fraction from other sources, IF you can figure out the part number or cross reference.

For alternators, I think there are at most 2-3 standard case sizes and mounting options for small engine alternators and Westerbeke absolutely uses a standard unit. I would take the old one to an auto electric shop to see if they can rebuild it or sell you an equivalent from Delco, Leece-Neville, etc. By the way, I believe even the expensive Balmars and such are just rebranded Leece-Nevilles.

Regarding the voltage, if the batteries are really 13.3 V that should be plenty to crank the engine. Resting voltage on fully charged batteries I think should be around 12.6-12.7 V so if you're reading 13.3 either a charging source is connected or your meter is off.

And correct at least for old style diesels. Once you crank them they don't need any electricity. I understand there are newer electronic injection and computer controlled models that have to have power to run. They are supposed to be more efficient, smoother and quieter but hard for me to give up the benefit of power free running.
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Old 11-04-2013, 10:24   #335
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

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A really nice passage. Traveled with two other boats, Latitude & Valkyrie, both headed for Morehead City. The most unnerving part was the entrance to Wassaw Sound. The sun went down just as I hit the outer marker. The three red Markers 4,6, & 8 are positioned by the CG to show the current channel, #6 is missing (At least I couldn't find it ). But I followed the charted depths and, since I hit the outer marker at high tide I had at least 6' under my keel at all times. I did see breakers about 200 yards to starboard just as twilight died. Once into the sound I was bucking the full flow of the outgoing tide, move the bow 1 inch and the current tried to turn the boat around. Next came trying to find a dock at 1AM. Thunderbolt was full, as was Morning Star. I didn't know the layout at Savannah Bend, but Hinkly's had a beautiful floating dock with nobody on it. Tried to point down river, but the current wouldn't give me none of that. Came in pointing into the current and slid right up to the dock, jumped off and grabbed the stern line, DUMMY! The bow took off and I just made it back on board. Got it under control again, slid up to the dock again, jumped off, grabbed the bow line and everything was good.

All in all a good first solo in the ocean, had the sails up for a while. I was more concerned about getting there then sailing, and the wind was dead in my face for half the journey. A great sailor I ain't but I know my limits. I did learn some today and will go out again in a day or two, destination... Charleston.
You will enjoy the tides in Charlston..
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Old 11-04-2013, 13:31   #336
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I missed the live oaks, too, by a whisker! (Not really) Checked out the prices for a new alternator, $450-$700, for the Westerbeke OEM. I have seen other brands (Delco and such) for as low as $150 that say they are replacements, but I don't know if they will be physically the same size. I don't want to get one just to find that I need to modify the mounting. The West Marine price is the $700, Discount marine is $650.

Don't know too much about diesel engines but I thought they didn't need electricity to run (no spark plugs, etc.). Is that correct?

BTW the batter is reading 13.3VDC but it hardly turns the motor over. And over the past year I remember it reading someplace north of 14VDC.
This sounds more ominous than alternator. Did the engine make any weird noise or grinding as it shut down? Sounds like starter issue except that engine shut down. Alternator wouldnt make engine stop, and wouldn't leave battery charged. Only thing I can think of as a nonmechanic is something that is keeping the engine from cranking freely - like a seizing cylinder or water in a cylinder? Hope I am wrong for sure.
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Old 12-04-2013, 17:12   #337
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

If you have an electric lift pump then that might do it. I'd also suspect the alternator, but batteries do die suddenly too.
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Old 13-04-2013, 14:15   #338
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

Replaced battery, little help but still cranks very hard. Suspect water in cylinders cause by cranking a lot with raw water not being spit out the back (No combustion). So, a 2 micro filter causes fuel starvation, I try to start it without luck, change filter, try to start, gets hard. Replace battery try to start still hard. Now I either have a bad starter or water in the cylinder. I'll check for water first and clean out the cylinders if necessary, then it's the starter. I am also going to replace the high power cables from the battery to the starter (They are 4 gauge, I'll go to 2 gauge.)
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Old 19-04-2013, 18:43   #339
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Any updates? Sure hope it was a benign problem....
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Old 20-04-2013, 07:36   #340
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

So far I have: Reconditioned the injectors. Replaced the 4 gauge power wire to the starter with a 2 gauge. Taken the starter out to a local motor place and had it tested (good). Replaced the filters. Now in addition to not spinning fast enough it is making a grinding noise that sounds expensive. Monday I am having a Westerbeke trained engineer take a look.

This “mildly expensive inconvenience.” could become very costly.
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Old 20-04-2013, 08:54   #341
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So far I have: Reconditioned the injectors. Replaced the 4 gauge power wire to the starter with a 2 gauge. Taken the starter out to a local motor place and had it tested (good). Replaced the filters. Now in addition to not spinning fast enough it is making a grinding noise that sounds expensive. Monday I am having a Westerbeke trained engineer take a look.

This “mildly expensive inconvenience.” could become very costly.
Hope not. Hope he finds some small thing. It sounds like it didn't happen over time so maybe it's just catching on something. Best of luck.
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Old 20-04-2013, 13:06   #342
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Good luck. Engine issues really suck....
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Old 20-04-2013, 21:34   #343
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It sounds like $$$ to me, good luck getting it fixed.
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Old 23-04-2013, 08:27   #344
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

I have the answer, but it ain't pretty. Broken damper spring in the transmission. Parts and labor >$1500, so says the mechanic, I guess is the estimate should be >$3000. The engine doesn't need to be pulled but it does need to be brought forward. I knew it was something expensive since I did all the cheap stuff. But that saved me money (about $300) in the long run. Well, I paid for a month here and I guess I'll use most of it, but then I'll have a good transmission, new filters, new battery and cables, a new battery charger, reconditioned fuel injectors, and a very well tested starter. Nobody said it would be easy.
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Old 23-04-2013, 09:48   #345
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ouch, but that seems in line with everything on my boat. if I think its going to be 100 it is actually 1000. If I think it's 1000 it actually cost 4000 and if I think it should be 4000 then I'm in for 10000. I call it the floating effect. Whatever it is, if it floats there is some distortion of the time, labor, pay laws that occur as you approach water!
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