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Seaquesta1 25-02-2007 16:46

Volvo Saildrive 7yr service - jeepers!!!
My Volvo MD 2030B and sail drive have been in the boat for 10 years now and since I've gutted the interior of the boat and have excellent access to the engine, I thought now would be a good time to give the engine and sail drive unit a full once over. According to the manual, at 7 years the sail drive through-hull should be replaced, and since this is all that keeps the water out, I thought I should replace it.

So I wander down to the Volvo dealer and get some pricing on the bits I need. According to them, I need the replacement kit and a replacement ring as mine has gone rusty (mild steel in a marine environment, go figure?!). The price .... NZ$1,100!!! (approx US$750).

This price is for a circular piece of rubber approx 1 ft in diameter, two plastic bits I dont need, and a steel ring approx 1 ft in diameter.

Has anybody done this job and can they confirm this pricing as its seems extortionate. Having seen the bits, I cant see how they should cost more than $100, including a good margin for the reseller.

Does anyone know of a work-around perhaps?

never monday 25-02-2007 17:40

I've done it. All I can say is, it's Volvo.

Seaquesta1 25-02-2007 17:46

Thanks for your reply Pat.

What gets to me most is that this is about 10% of the cost of a new engine?!

I might put on some old greasy overalls to look more like a tradesman and see if I can wrangle a hefty 'trade' discount.

seafox 25-02-2007 17:53

I wonder if we can get these parts cheaper overseas! What a bloody rip off.
My last motor was a yanmar and I replaced it still with the original seal after 20 years. I see the new yanmar manual says replace at 2 years.
I reckon seven is even a bit early. A major effort to get at it and then that ridiculous parts cost.
Maybe I should sell my boat before the seven years is up for my new Volvo:(

never monday 25-02-2007 17:55

Here in the states the trade discount is alot less than you'ld think. I don't remember the parts being $750.00 but i'm sure it was atleast $500.00. The boot was reasonable, the steel ring was out rageous for what it is. I'll look it up on Monday and get my current pricing. Which saildrive is it?

seafox 25-02-2007 17:57

I also wonder if you could go to a rubber or bearings shop and find something similar. The steel ring should not be too hard to have made. My mate just replaced a seal (genuine part$55) with a seal from an industrial bearings and seal shop for $11.
Does anyone copy/make their expensive propeller annodes in NZ?

never monday 25-02-2007 18:00

The ring has a pressed lip in it to conform to the seal boot. the boot has a lip on the outer edge and a center that bolts between the upper and lower housings of the saildrive in a groove. It's realy a special part.

seafox 25-02-2007 18:07

Even so, it really is a joke. You only have to look at what $1,000 can buy these days. Makes you want to buy some brand new Volvo motors and saildrives and break them down to sell to people as parts. I am sure there would be a good profit in doing that and the customer would still get a much better deal.

Maine Sail 25-02-2007 18:38

This is the reason
I will never ever buy a boat with a Volvo engine again. My boat is currently for sale and I've been looking for a replacement but if the listing says Volvo I won't even look. Volvo once stuck me for an entire boating season on a 65.00 proprietary bolt (that should have cost three bucks) that I could not run the engine without. It took me four months to get this part and there is no excuse for that! I even tried overseas distributors and NO ONE had the part in stock and it was "backordered" from Volvo. Parts are a total rip off if you can even get them and then they do stupid stuff like use mild steel instead of Bronze, Brass or even Stainless. I spent more $$ on my one Volvo engine in the two years I owned it than I have on the five engines in the five boats I've owned since the Cape Dory with the Volvo. I like Universals, Nani's or Betas the best because they are Kubota based engines and I can buy my non marinized parts at the local tractor store when an if I ever need them.

Seaquesta1 25-02-2007 18:53

Thanks Pat, its a 120S (or possibly 120SD)

I was more that a tad pissed off to see the boot ring was mild steel!, I was going to look at it tonight and see if I could make the ring myself, but it sounds like Volvo have made that near impossible.

Seafox, im with you on this one. Ill be looking at a new engine in the next 5 years and if this is how it is with Volvos, I sure wont be buying one

Acoutic, cheers for the tips on Kubota, I think i might give them a call and see if i can get some ammo to hit the Volvo dealer with

seafox 25-02-2007 19:28

Has anyone ever had a good story to tell about a Volvo? As soon as I had bought mine I started hearing the bad tales..............then it started to me.........

Seaquesta1, at least you have got 10 years out of it!:)

Seaquesta1 25-02-2007 19:45


Originally Posted by seafox
Has anyone ever had a good story to tell about a Volvo? As soon as I had bought mine I started hearing the bad tales..............then it started to me.........

Seaquesta1, at least you have got 10 years out of it!:)

well...errr....the previous owner got 10 years out of it. I bought the boat 18 months ago, and shes been outa the water getting a refit for most of that time. To date, the motor has been great, starts first time, no smoke at all and purrs like a pussy cat. We got becalmed in the Tasman Sea for 3 days on the delivery trip home and the motor purred for 100 hours solid, kept the boat at 7 knts and only chewed thrught 2 litres an hour. Cant complain with that. But it has done 2,500 hours and who knows how much longer shes got. That why I thought Id service her to a top notch level and get the most out of her, but at these wondering if Id be better putting the service money into a new engine instead.

sigh....maybe I should just put my smelly wet weather gear on, jump in the shower and tear up some more money.

seafox 25-02-2007 21:22

I think at the end of the day all motors are going to cost a bit. The spare parts for the old Yanmar were made of gold too.

cooper 25-02-2007 23:11

l have an engine of a certain brand and sail drive sitting in my shed... Not going to use it....! Putting in an isuzu industrial instead. Previous owner had same problem with the metal retaining ring. Got the bit built up with a little bit of weld in a couple of problem areas and then had the whole thing re galvinised. If l was going to use it l would epoxy coat it as well to lessen any further problems. You might as well do the work and have it better than original. Remember "marine" means stick an extra 0 on the end of the price. A heap of marine "specialists" will rush to their own defence and state how much "more" is involved in a product that is for marine use.........when you can buy an entire car with all the extra bits for a few thousand less than a "boat" engine you know that they are putting on a "lifestyle charge". After all its not what it is worth....its how much you are willing to pay.. to make it even more "funny" l think you will find that some of the engines sold under the badge of a certain hat driving company are not even made by that company...and indeed are sold as industrial engines elsewhere .........

Alan Wheeler 26-02-2007 00:14


Has anyone ever had a good story to tell about a Volvo?
I have to tell everyone here, that poor Darryl has probably got one of the sadest tales of woe with Volvo. It was sad seeing a grown man cry over a beer telling the tale ;-)
It doesn't matter what model you own, Volvo has the reputation of expensive parts worldwide. If you even look at lossening a bolt somewhere, it will cost you. One of there older stern legs used to cost $1K to put back together without including any repair costs if it needed it.

when you can buy an entire car with all the extra bits for a few thousand less than a "boat"
Yeah but a car doesn't float....for long anyway ;-)

On the seriouse side, can the boot be bought without the ring??
If yes, then there maybe a way. There is a special strapping system available. I can't remember the name,(bandex?) but I used to sell it. The strap is SST and comes in a roll, so you cut off the length you need. I have seen this stuff used on Car CV rubber boot joints.
Now it is quite possible to maybe send that strap to a metal worker and have them fold in the rib. Someone that custom builds cars should also have the machine that could roll this lip. Just a thought.
I will try to remember to check the name tomorrow.

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