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post #11 of 21 Old 02-26-2019
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Re: Atomic 4 question

Here is the Moyer Marine website the company that supports the A-4

https://moyermarine.com/

Here is the forum Moyer supports and has a lot of A-4 owners willing to help out.

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post #12 of 21 Old 02-26-2019
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Re: Atomic 4 question

How is the outboard mounted? The transom of the Pearson 30 was not designed to support an outboard, so it should have been reinforced (e.g., laminating and tabbing-in some marine ply on the inside of the transmom). Might not be a big deal on a small lake but it could be an issue in some chop.

We had a '77 Pearson 28 with an Atomic 4. Loved that engine. It was easy to maintain and troubleshoot. Contrary to what someone said above, the water pump and gear box are serviceable without having to remove the engine or haul the boat. And Moyer Marine is your friend...

https://moyermarine.com/

Do some quick, basic maintenance (without spending a lot of time or money) and see if it starts. Clean the carb, get clean fuel, change the oil, change the plugs, change the water pump impeller.
If it starts, then think about what else is needed to keep it running for the long-term and decide if it's worth the investment. If not, get rid of it and go with the outboard. But inspect the outboard installation to make sure it isn't going to tear away from the transom.
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post #13 of 21 Old 02-26-2019
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Re: Atomic 4 question

One advantage of going for the outboard solution is that you just buy another when you can't start it. Avoiding a novel experience like learning anything about how things work and the mysterious complexity of the outside world can be completely ignored .Stay on that well beaten path.
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post #14 of 21 Old 02-27-2019
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Re: Atomic 4 question

I think you should talk to a mechanic to take a look at your Pearson.
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post #15 of 21 Old 02-27-2019
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Re: Atomic 4 question

Say you spend $2K getting the motor back to peak condition. You're still $6-8K ahead of a re-power.

Repeating considerations from above regarding the outboard: properly reinforced mount, and enough power to manage a tricky situation; on a lake you're just fine. In a costal squall, maybe not so much.

In any case, it's well worth a professional assessment.
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post #16 of 21 Old 02-27-2019
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Re: Atomic 4 question

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Originally Posted by cdy View Post
Picked up a 1979 Pearson 30 yesterday - has a non - running Atomic 4 which I assume is the original - looks oK from a visual inspection - turns over but wont start - previous owner put on an outboard bracket and now it has a 9.9 Yamaha longshaft 4 - stroke - which is fine for me - I am sure there will be some cavitation issues but the 30 is a good sailing boat so don't plan to motor to much.

I could get a mechanic to come look at it and possibly get it running again - the previous owner ran it when he got it - he is not sure the reason for the problem - I am thinking of just removing it and using the space for storage - is repairing a A-4 worth the the time or $?
Short answer is yes, it is worth it to repair it. These are really quite simple machines. Fuel, spark, compression. I too highly recommend going to the Moyer forum site and post your situation. There are very knowledgeable folks over there who will literally walk you through the troubleshooting process. Given your brief explanation, I'm betting this will be a very simple and inexpensive fix. Just my opinion, I could be wrong...just ask my kids!
Good luck.
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s/v Harmony
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post #17 of 21 Old 02-27-2019 Thread Starter
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Re: Atomic 4 question

I have had diesels before and know my way around them a little - last gas engine I worked on was a 1968 Dart - back in the early 80's.

I can do the basics to try and start it - the PO replaced all the plugs - I will check if it will spark - I have a feeling its a fuel problem - either its gunked up or not getting to it - pump needed? For the next year it will be sailed on the Banana & Indian River( Intracoastal) - I doubt any offshore stuff - the outboard should handle anything on the river - mostly just getting in and out of slip and past swing bridge ( Melbourne)
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post #18 of 21 Old 02-27-2019
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Re: Atomic 4 question

Quote:
Originally Posted by cdy View Post
I have had diesels before and know my way around them a little - last gas engine I worked on was a 1968 Dart - back in the early 80's.

I can do the basics to try and start it - the PO replaced all the plugs - I will check if it will spark - I have a feeling its a fuel problem - either its gunked up or not getting to it - pump needed? For the next year it will be sailed on the Banana & Indian River( Intracoastal) - I doubt any offshore stuff - the outboard should handle anything on the river - mostly just getting in and out of slip and past swing bridge ( Melbourne)
If the fuel is gunked up then the jets in the carb are too. If you are not getting fuel, a simple fix is going to an electric fuel pump. Moyer has them. I would recommend a carb rebuild kit (also at Moyer) or at the minimum a good cleaning. The jets are prone to clogging with bad fuel. Does it have a racor to filter water? Polishing filter between fuel pump and carb? Those would be my first steps. Actually I would first check to see if it is getting spark...that's easy and free!
Good luck.

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post #19 of 21 Old 02-28-2019
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Re: Atomic 4 question

I had one on my Columbia 8.3. U used the vang to control the boom and mainsheet to lift it and swung the boom out over the dock, took it into the shed and rebuilt it, taking the opportunity to re-paint (brush, prime first) the parts in the original copper color. The only thing I did not do was take the valves out of the head. New rings, bearings, main seals, water pump impeller, fuel pump diaphragm, everything but the valves. Very easy rebuild. When I put it back in I put new fuel lined and added a large Racor fuel filter/water separator and added a shutoff valve after the filter. I ran the hose from the original small filter/separator to the Racor, to the cutoff, to the carburetor which I also rebuilt. Then I bought 2 of each ignition parts (2 rotors, 2 distributor caps, 8 plugs and 10 wires, 2 coils, 2 points, 2 condensers) so I could get it back running while at sea. The hardest part of the rebuild was finding the book with all the instructions and specs. At the end of it it ran great until the new but aged cork head gasket failed allowing seawater to enter one of the cylinders. If you can't find a recently manufactured head gasket, I would cut your own from modern synthetic material. I think the total build was under $300 including redundant ignition system parts.

A quick web search and I was able to find a free PDF of the manual I had: (I can't post links, so... "fdlaudubon dot org slash page19 slash assets slash A4RepairMaint dot pdf" or google "atomic 4 service manual" and it was the first result for me.

I would rebuild it. Let us know how it goes! Good luck!
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post #20 of 21 Old 02-28-2019
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I have the original Atomic 4 in ‘76 C&C 33. An outboard motor will change the balance of your boat and it would be worth your while to learn this engine and it’s a simple engine and very gratifying to learn from it. I knew nothing about engines and mine has taught me enormous along with the Moyer Marine website. They know everything about this engine and can help you get it started and keep it running. It’s a great engine and your boat was built with this engine in its place for a reason. I hope you choose to learn about the A-4 and happy sailing.
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