Is this true? Any other options?
Semi-sarcastic: Can I just spray "Flex-Seal" on the bottom of the pan?
Any help is appreciated so I can wrap my head around this.
"After a two hour quoted job required four days of trips"??????
Taking a step back to look at the whole picture, your dilemma is a good illustration of why you should learn how to work on your own boat:
1. There are no real time constraints;
2. It is fairly simple (not necessarily easy, but simple);
3. One day, you may need to know how to fix your engine with no one else around; and,
4. You can never fully trust someone, no matter how reputable, who stands to profit from your ignorance. You never know what someone is going through in his or her personal life, or what he or she will do when the chips are down.
You may be better off replacing the whole engine yourself, if you plan to remove it from the boat. Or just buying a brand new one, professionally installed.
Ditch the mechanic and start doing your own work. Buy Don Casey's "Complete Illustrated Sailboat Maintenance Manual", Don Casey's "This Old Boat", Peter Compton's "Troubleshooting Marine Diesels", and Nigel Calder's "Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual".
Buy the necessary tools and do your research on the internet, with the appropriate amount of skepticism. You will find working on your own boat rewarding and a valuable addition to your boating skill sets.