Love the Beta, those Kubota tractor blocks are bulletproof, reliable, and last forever if you take care of them.
Beta is distinctive because you can move some of the most used parts to be easily accessible, such as the oil extractor pump
, fuel filter
and bleeder pump, oil filter
, etc. First boat
with a Beta that we had (Beta 30) I was able to access everything right in front after opening the access door. Easy peasy.
Had many boats and engines in the past 35 years (Yanmar, Volvo, Ford, etc) and after buying
one 10 years ago repowered with Beta I now wouldn't want any other engine. We re-powered our current
20 ton boat with a Beta 85 and our new generator
is NexGen, which is a Kubota as well.
Below is my Google Review
of the engine and the shop that installed it (SF Bay Area). Let me know if you have questions from an owner's perspective.
“Beta? What’s a Beta?” This question led me to two of the best decisions I’ve ever made in my 35-years as a boat owner - to re-power our beloved Nauticat 43 cutter/ketch with a Beta Marine
diesel engine with H & M Marine
THE ENGINE: I asked “What’s a Beta?” when considering purchasing
our previous boat which had a Beta 30 installed by H & M Marine (also known as Beta Marine
West and Hirschfeld Yacht, LLC). When I opened the engine compartment of that boat for the first time, I was sold
. It was the most beautiful engine install I’ve ever seen (clean, organized) and this gleaming red engine had all the maintenance parts within immediate reach – oil and fuel
filters, dipstick, impeller, belts, oil change
But the performance of the Beta is what matters most. Is it possible to “Love” your engine? Quiet, reliable, strong, easy to maintain, she never let us down and always carried us home, even in the hairiest conditions off the Pacific coast and in S.F Bay. When we moved up to our Nauticat with a tired, smoky 90hp Ford Lehman
, our top priority was to re-power with Beta at H & M Marine.
THE SHOP: These guys are simply the best. After doing my due diligence for such an expensive and important decision by getting competitive bids for re-powering with Volvo, Yanmar, etc. with other shops, getting a Beta with H & M Marine ended up being a no-brainer.
When we arrived at their dock
in Sausalito I was introduced to co-owner Shane McCormack, the “M” of H & M Marine. Simply put, Shane is a friggin mechanical genius and passionate about Beta and his work
. He personally does each Beta install and was the guy who did the beautiful install of the engine in our previous boat. Every boat is different and every re-power requires a high level of expertise to design a system that is a good fit for the boat and new engine, more like a heart transplant than “plug and play.”
Matching the prop, shaft, and engine to the size, displacement
, and type of boat is an art and science that makes or breaks the re-power project
. Shane not only designed and installed a beautiful fit of engine and boat, he elegantly re-designed our fuel transfer system (we have two 110 gallon fuel tanks), oil change
system, and fuel filtering system. Shane also installed our new generator
(NextGen, a Beta of course) and handled two huge projects that local boatyards
either messed up or couldn’t handle: One of our fuel tanks
was leaking and required a lot of custom work
to remove and replace that was beyond the capabilities of the local boatyard, and our dual-helm hydraulic steering
system was leaking and the cockpit helm
needed replacing. A previous boatyard attempted to fix this and messed it up badly (cross-threaded, cheap
“Home Depot” type fittings, etc.). Not only did Shane fix our hydraulic steering
system, he improved on the original design making it far easier to bleed and maintain than when the boat left the manufacturer. He should patent his bleeding system; it’s that unique and brilliant.
I could go on and on about Shane, who is the only guy who I will allow to touch my boat’s mechanicals from now on, but H & M Marine is a busy, well run shop with a lot of staff. Their prime Sausalito location in Clipper Harbor means they have all the work they need, but unlike other shops I’ve experienced, in my time here I’ve observed these guys to be on top of every job and take immaculate care of every customer. While Shane will always be either deep inside a boat or in his shop, Ethan is seemingly everywhere at once taking care of everything and everybody- moving boats and trailers, on the phone
, on the computer, directing staff, helping customers, while finding time to go crabbing (in season, of course), while John, the General Manager is the strong, friendly, efficient guy that keeps everything running smoothly. When we first arrived John blew us away by personally driving us across the bay to retrieve our car, and we’ve felt well taken care of every step of the way since.
And, yes, we Love our new Beta, thanks to H & M Marine.