Date: 5 April 2014. Engine Update (swapping motors is complicated)
Seaweed is having surgery this
week. Yes, finally, her old gasoline beast of an engine is being
removed and the new one is going in. She is going to have a sweet
little Volvo that will push her along at hull speed. Yes, I know that
Volvo parts are $$, but then again, they are available -- something
that cannot be said for all engines.
A decent mechanic can fix almost
anything mechanical, provided parts can be bought. The older
engines such as mine are mechanical. By that I mean nothing is turbo
powered, no computer sensors -- it's just a basic motor without a
lot of complicated "improvements" that can cause diagnostic
nightmares when breakdowns occur.
First things first: the old engine
has to come out. That means the top half is being dismantled and
then the block and tranny will come out last. My waterline will be
happy without the weight.
Last spring I had an issue with
the keyway (sheared it) in the transmission coupler, so at least
that bit will come apart easier. It's still going to be a bear and
hopefully not horribly more money.
I'm already at double the budget
I'd anticipated, and not the one from the mechanic mind you. Still, I am an
incurable optimist. We're not going to discuss time frame either.
Such is life: it's a boat, you know? Everyone out here knows that
time taken and money costs for projects seems to grow exponentially.
This one has been no exception.
The engine that arrived was not
quite what we thought it was and there were a lot of things that
needed overhaul so costs jumped, including parts. My mechanic,
Just Right Marine
here in Carrabelle was able to locate all we needed. Parts
unavailable in the US were
shipped in from England via air freight and those little boxes
with Volvo on the outside were not inexpensive.
available, and that was far more important to me than anything.
At this point, excluding the engine block just
about everything in the motor is new. Those parts include:
new fuel pumps (both external and internal high pressure
- new fuel lines
|Let's not forget the
transmission. It was completely dismantled and rebuilt with:
- new gaskets
- new bearings
Additionally, brackets were created for
transmission and throttle lines, a brace for the starter generator had
to be built, the coupler needed to be re-bore to fit my
1.25" shaft, a 5/16" keyway cut in the coupler, and, well,
lots of "little things" that go into installing a new engine
in a boat.
The process is a lot more complicated
than it seems at first glance.
I'm confident that in the end I'll have a
reliable engine, and that's critical to my happiness quotient.
The ONLY thing I was
absolutely adamant about
when boat shopping was I'd have a diesel engine.
You see, when I was a kidlet I'd been less than 10' from a
that blew up (broke a couple of ribs when I was slammed down on the
dinghy dock) ... so of course I ended up with a gasoline powered boat. Life is
like that sometimes.
To re-power was always the plan.
And that is coming true now. This has been a long
journey. I've been aboard Seaweed for nearly six years. Though she was not
perfect at first, my home was was "good enough" and that's
all one can ask. But now? Seaweed is approaching
magnificent -- give or take!
Have you ever replaced a motor in your boat?
And did you run into any difficulties that were unexpected?
In the Bilges,
Blue-Water Boats ~
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