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Old 02-04-2019, 06:27   #1
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Boat: 79 Bertram 33 Fisherman
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bertram 33 transmission mg-502 twin disk

Couple of weeks ago I had a problem with the port engine on my Bertram 33 with 3208 cats. The turbo went south on me so I replaced it with another one that I assume it was a rebuilt. Never saw a core charge on the bill but the one that went bad had a piece inside it broke off and missing.

I installed it with new gaskets, hoses etc and had it running in the slip waiting for a day to take it out and make sure it was working ok.

I had the boat out before and the transmission worked fine with no problems. Shifted fine both forward and reverse.

Well after replacing the turbo and running it a couple of time I took the boat out a couple of days ago and everything seemed to shirt good and was in a no wake zone so just couldn't run it fast. Well after clearing the wake zone i started shoving the throttle forward and every thing seemed to be working good. As we started picking up RPM everything seemed normal and then it sounded like the trans was popping in and out of gear so i pulled throttle back and it stopped doing it. I'm kind of at a loss and don't want to pull the trans out if i don't have to as its a pain to do. The trans was fixed 3 years back and was told it was rebuilt locally at a marina here in Carrabelle, Florida. I've checked the oil level and it looks fine.

Was wondering if maybe letting it sit for a while without engaging trans might have caused a problem with a stick valve or pressure regulator if there is one in there. Funny it stops doing it with the power pulled back.

Any help would be greatly appreciated and if you know someone close to me that might be able to help, send me his name and phone number.

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Old 02-04-2019, 07:22   #2
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Re: bertram 33 transmission mg-502 twin disk

You sure it was the tranny and you havent spun a hub in the prop???
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Old 02-04-2019, 07:38   #3
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Re: bertram 33 transmission mg-502 twin disk

Originally Posted by flyingfin View Post
You sure it was the tranny and you havent spun a hub in the prop???

Spun hub on an inboard?
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Old 02-04-2019, 07:49   #4
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Re: bertram 33 transmission mg-502 twin disk

Well that's interesting. Never thought about that. Prop has a key and also the flange hub on the transmission. I had them remove the props one time to get checked. Both of them were done. last year I had to pull the boat out of water to fix a stern tube that started leaking because of rotten plywood used for a washer behind the nut. But that was on a starbd side not port.

I do remember seeing a bolt sticking out of the flange that bolts to the transmission that caught my eye and was making wonder what it was doing

Ill have a look at the flange but prop Ill have to get my son in his diving gear to go and look.

thanks a lot
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Old 02-04-2019, 09:22   #5
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Re: bertram 33 transmission mg-502 twin disk

Did you check the trans oil level? Has it been changed recently and filter changed or screen cleaned? I would drain the oil and check for any debris, some gears have filters and some use a very fine mesh screen. Remove whichever type you have and check for debris. If any debris comes out the drain or the filter or screen is plugged with debris donít keep using it as the cost to repair will escalate.
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Old 03-04-2019, 09:11   #6
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Re: bertram 33 transmission mg-502 twin disk

Iíve run my boat with TD 502ís for 20 years with no service issues. These are normally considered one of the most bullet proof trans out there. However that being said anything can need to be fixed at one time or another.
Have you looked at the trouble shooting guide part of the manual. The little hydraulic pump can go bad. Low oil or a leaking transcooler. Look for water in trans oil.
As to the turbo. I would look at your exhaust tube design and make sure no issues there. Take a look at Tonyís tips at to see if your exhaust measure up.
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Old 28-06-2019, 04:14   #7
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Re: bertram 33 transmission mg-502 twin disk


Well I did check everything suggested and couldn't find anything. So I pulled the transmission out and sent it to a place to be rebuilt,Total cost to pull and get rebuilt was $6600 dollars. Thought somebody might have to take me too hospital for my heart and the bank for some money ROFL

You can get ford pickup transmission overhauled for 2200 and that includes R&R too. BUT when he told me that when he broke it open and started to look, he found that there WERE NO SHIMS anywhere in the transmission. He thinks that who ever had it apart just thru it tonger to get it working enough to sell the boat. Doesn't surprise me at all after looking at the turbo (photo attached). I was missing a piece of casting close to the exhaust turbo blades and there was no way all the metal could get by those blades with damaging them. Think somebody put a junk one on it to sell the boat too. This has been quite an experience for me. Being the trusting soul I am, I have been burnt pretty good and even had the boat expected prior to buying it. Found a lot of stuff I myself I would have wrote up. Biggest thing was finding two battery cables from those big batteries laying in the bottom of boat running to the back where generator is. Checked them to see if one is was 12 volts and other was ground and they were. Nothing on the end of cables to insulate them. If they would have ever got together they would have welded together and either batteries would have exploded or boat would have caught fire and somebody could have died. So I pulled them all out since they were no doing anything. That's just one of the things I have found wrong.

I got the trans installed and took it out and runs great now (fingers crossed). Need to clean bottom from sitting so long and Im that next week. Also if you remember me writing about those horse shoe shaped clamps for the turbo pipes, well I sent the original cracked and bent ones for a sample to be made. Would I do it again NOOOOO

Were right size but hole where bolts went were slotted instead of drilled. I own a mill so next ones Ill make myself. Only reason I didn't was TIME.
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