Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: San Francisco Bay area
Thanked 92 Times in 91 Posts
Rep Power: 9
Re: Bristol 38.8 (1986), Tartan 40 (1987)
With both those engines, it comes down to how they have been looked after. I would not be afraid of higher hours, indeed I would take regular and prolonged use as a good thing. My 1984 Universal has nearly 4,000 hours, and is going strong. On the other hand, I've seen dead engines at 1,000 hours if they have been neglected.
The problem with all engines of that age, apart from wear, can be parts availability. Some of the marinization parts are getting hard to find for the Universals, exhaust manifolds for example. On the other hand, anything that's a Kubota part can be had for far cheaper than Yanmar parts, from tractor supply places. Just got a starter motor for $80. Try that with a Yanmar.
Jim is right, the 38.8 only comes in keel/centerboard.
My experience of Bristols of this vintage is of absolutely bombproof build quality.
Bristol 31.1, San Francisco Bay
Last edited by MarkSF; 07-14-2016 at 02:28 PM.