Westerbeke 33, can it be rebuilt? - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of Old 01-26-2009
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Originally Posted by kerriour View Post
thanks you all for your responses. The engine was removed from the boat, the head taken off and one piston was cracked completely across the top. The westerbeke 33 model has a history of cracked pistons, I guess it just finally caught up to me. Upon inspection, by eye, of the cylinder walls it was clear the walls were scratched and scarred, and some brown material that looked like rust, were in each cylinder.

I was told by mechanic that in his opinion the engine was shot and needed to be replaced. Again, according to him the tolerances of the engine made it difficult and unlikely to be successful. I have to trust what he tells me because I have not other way of knowing.

At this point we have identified a Westerbeke 44 to be the best replacement given dimensions, weight, power, etc. When I am done I will have spend the equililent of 33% of the boats value...not sure what else to say, or do, I am between the perverbial rock and a hard place. Again, thanks for your responese....Jim
If you get done all in for only 33%, you're doing pretty well...this is your chance to contribute to th eetensive lore that owning a boat is an expensive hobby...even ignoring the purchase price.

While the engine is out is the opportune time to pull and replace the fuel tank and the hot water tanks, two common problems on your boat, plus look closely at the radial drive and related gear, if you want a underdeck autopilot, put it in now. My bet is you'll break 50% before she gets wet again..

Certified...in several regards...
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post #12 of Old 01-26-2009
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I cannot believe that I could not rebuild any engine for for $500 a hole and make a good money doing it.

Why your mechanic wants to install a new engine---

engine list price $6,000
mechanic cost $4,800 list less 20%
profit for no work$1200 Didn't even get hands dirty

Still gets paid for r&r (Remove and replace)

And may even talk the owener into paying him to haul off old engine to a rebuilder for a core that the rebuilter will pay him (the mechanic) for.

The prices may be different but the results are the same.

I am flabergasted that in a world of Terabites, billions, and home computers that can run a small country that people are scared by .001 of and inch.. These are tollarances that machinests have been working with for over 100 years. just the ball bearings in your lawnmower have clearances to .0001.

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post #13 of Old 01-26-2009
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It is not really a tolerance issue, despite the claim. What the mechanic must be arguing is that there is not enough material in the cylinder liners to allow a re-bore. This is very questionable to me.

What the mechainc could be arguing is that the pitting is so deep that a re-bore to the max allowable would not reclaim the surfaces. If so, then drift in some new liners and use standard pistons.

It does not make sense, hence the wish to see some pictures.
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post #14 of Old 01-26-2009
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Rockter

That is what I think.

Scrap an engine just because it scored a cylinder wall??

Boreing and then installing a sleve and then boreing the new sleve is not something that is new for the automotive machinest.

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post #15 of Old 01-26-2009
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Most mechanics are not machinists, and most machinists are not mechanics- Have a machinist look at the engine and determine whether you have enough beef left in the cylinders to be able to trim the fat. a couple of minutes with a micrometer will tell the tale.
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post #16 of Old 01-26-2009
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Kerri :

Was the bottom end sound? Was the gearbox OK? Was it statrting OK before the engine failure? Were there many hours on it? Was it using oil before the failure?
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post #17 of Old 03-11-2009
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Ran across this thread on google, just figured I'd throw in my .02 from exp with the westerbeke 33. It should be rebuildable, we had ours rebuilt about 2 years ago, due to 2 cracked pistons. Almost no engine is un-rebuildable, the question is how much are you willing to spend to rebuild it. If yours has never been rebuilt, and it only cracked a piston and the crank/rods/etc are in good shape, and the cylinder isn't torn up (probably isn't), it shouldn't be too big of a deal to rebuild it at a reputable rebuilder who's capable of dealing with diesels. Cylinder overboring isn't a big deal as long as pistons are available and they are. The 33 tech manual lists .025, .050, and .075 overbore pistons. The greatest expense with rebuilding the 33 is that you generally have to get all the parts from westerbeke, which is very expensive. I would suggest taking the engine to an engine rebuilder and find out what they would want to replace, and what they'd charge. You should be able to get parts numbers and prices from your westerbeke dealer. From what I understand it's pretty much impossible to get a discount on parts.

The only other thing to be concerned with when rebuilding is if the cracked pistons are the only thing wrong with it. If they are, great, but if you have more serious issues (in particular with the injection pump, which as I recall wasn't rebuildable, or possibly was for $3000 or something ridiculous, we were going to replace the engine if the injection pump had gone bad).

The 33 is a mitsubishi built diesel, but we've never been able to track down what mitsubishi model it is. The only way we found it was mitsubishi was the new pistons from westerbeke have the mitsubishi logo stamped on the underside. There were no mitsu part numbers to be found anywhere. On the plus side, the new pistons were redesigned to improve combustion and made an incredible difference in starting the engine (although not having cracks in the pistons makes a big difference as well )
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post #18 of Old 03-12-2009
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We got our M25XP Re-Man with v-drive for 6k included everything. We have more than 6K into it with new exhaust and other stuff, probaly around 7k total. I am doing all the work my self and was really not that hard to do.

Diesel Conversion pictures by PaperboyRacing - Photobucket

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Quote:
like a Beta Marine, Kubota-based one...
the engine is based on the tractor engine not a marine engine.

might be the best option since you can go to the local tractor store and buy parts for a lot less than a marina would charge for the same part.

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post #20 of Old 03-12-2009
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"The 33 is a mitsubishi built diesel, but we've never been able to track down what mitsubishi model it is."
If you can find out how many cubic inches (or liters) the displacement is, you can probably pick it out from any good list of Mitsu's diesels, there can't be all that many in any given size.

The hard truth can be determined by using a caliper to find out the cylinder bore now, the cylinder wall thickness, and the depth of the pitting. As they said on the X-Files, "The truth is out there" and this should be a matter of numbers, not opinions.

OTOH if that engine is infamous for cracked cylinders--it might just be worth getting rid of bad news. And no rebuild is worth considering unless it comes with an outstanding warranty, which will include servicing on the boat--or the cost of pulling & hauling to the shop again.

"Westerbeke" is said to be an Elbonian word for "A red engine made by someone else for the lowest price."
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