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Old 13-06-2020, 04:20   #1
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Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

Looking for recommendations for a great book on basic maintenance, trouble shooting, and repair for small Diesel engines. We have a Westerbeke and I am not what anybody call handy, so finger puppet level explanations are key.

Thank you in advance!
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Old 13-06-2020, 04:27   #2
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

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Looking for recommendations for a great book on basic maintenance, trouble shooting, and repair for small Diesel engines. We have a Westerbeke and I am not what anybody call handy, so finger puppet level explanations are key.



Thank you in advance!


“Marine diesel basics “ by Dennison Berwick is very good. All of Nigel Calders engine books are worth having aboard.
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Old 13-06-2020, 04:58   #3
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

Marine Diesel Engines by Nigel Calder. Any of his books are worthwhile.
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Old 13-06-2020, 05:37   #4
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

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Marine Diesel Engines by Nigel Calder. Any of his books are worthwhile.

+1 for the Nigel Calder book for basic maintenance.

Which Westerbeke do you have 4.108? Look on the web for other specific manuals for your motor.
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Old 13-06-2020, 08:32   #5
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

REMEMBER....Every 20 minute job is only one broken bolt away from a 3 day ordeal!
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Old 13-06-2020, 08:43   #6
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

I too recommend Calder's book, but the best books for your engine will be the Service Manual and Parts List.



The Service Manual has all the technical specs for things like fluids, torque settings, how to do certain procedures and much more. The Parts Manual will have exploded diagrams so you can see how multiple parts/systems go together as well as the part numbers.



The Calder book will have tips and other info that are experience based and almost certainly not in the manufacturer's info.
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Old 13-06-2020, 09:05   #7
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

I also recommend Calder’s book but you really need the engine service manual also. And don’t set Calder’s book on the shelf until a problem arises, read it and re-read it so you get to know some of the basic ins and outs.
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Old 13-06-2020, 09:14   #8
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

DITTO!
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Old 13-06-2020, 09:17   #9
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

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I also recommend Calder’s book but you really need the engine service manual also. And don’t set Calder’s book on the shelf until a problem arises, read it and re-read it so you get to know some of the basic ins and outs.
I very much echo this. In addition although it should be obvious by now is the great (and sometimes not so great) help you can get from some you tube videos. It seems humans often have an innate need to teach and some are good at it. And the often nicely descriptive 'lessons' are free.

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Old 13-06-2020, 09:46   #10
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

Calder’s books. YouTube has many tutorials about diesels. You may never want to get to the point of tearing a diesel apart. But there are many women who have torn their diesels apart and done excellent jobs. They were not professional mechanics. Diesels are simpler than gas engines.

Changing fluids and filters goes a long way in keeping her purring. You could even Shanghai a boat owner with a couple six packs to be tutored in the fine art of oil and filter changes. You also need to know how to take care of the transmission fluid and the packing gland aft if the tranny.

Take a deep breath and dive in. Read and watch. Learning is like an onion. Layer by layer. A year from now you won’t even think twice about changing fuel filters or a belt on the alternator. It will build confidence and you will feel you can take on more complex tasks like fuel injector cleaning.
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Old 13-06-2020, 11:13   #11
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

After reading the thread title I was going to recommend Nigel Caulder's book, but I see I'm way back in the line!
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Old 13-06-2020, 11:44   #12
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

Nigel Calder's Marine Diesel Engines: Maintenance, Troubleshooting and Repair

https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/Boo...lResults-_-BDP

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Old 13-06-2020, 12:44   #13
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

Get in touch with a Westerbeak dealer and obtain an owners manual and a parts/repair manual for your engine.
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Old 13-06-2020, 12:58   #14
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

I think every boat should carry Calder's big book on maintenance. His section on diesels is quite comprehensive and should dovetail into the maintenance manual for your engine.

The point about broken bolts and such is well taken. Diesels are just big air pumps. The challenge when they get old is dealing with corrosion and maintenance manuals don't really address this.
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Old 13-06-2020, 15:19   #15
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Re: Looking for a great book on maintaining Diesel engines

I was at a cruising seminar a few years ago when Nigel Calder (who was there as a special guest speaker - and whose books I too would highly recommend) was given an hour to talk about maintaining a diesel engine. First he told us about an incident when, in the middle of doing an oil change, he was called to Happy Hour. The next day he started the engine up. It ran for a few minutes, then seized - he having completely forgotten to put the new oil in after being called away the previous day. The story, and the way he told it, certainly broke the ice and established a great rapport between him and his audience.


He then explained that a diesel engine (Volvos excepted) only needs three things to stay healthy: clean fuel, Clean Fuel, and CLEAN FUEL (and regular oil changes). He then spent the rest of his allotted hour telling us how how to keep fuel and tanks clean.


Great guy!
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