Engine and Engine Room Upgrade
Two major items with the main engine and one minor issue in the engine room needed to be addressed before we went cruising. One engine issue that effects every boat is a clean system to change the oil. The other issue that I had was a single belt off of the main engine pulley that was driving the water pump and the 190 AMP alternator. The minor issue was cleaning and painting the engine and engine room
I was conferring with Gunnar Frank of Gunnar's Marine Tech about the single belt problem. Because of the size of the alternator on the engine, I had to keep the belt very tight. This tightness caused undue pressure on the water pump, causing premature water pump failure. These water pumps for the Ford Lehman 4D220 engines were not cheap. The solution that we came up with, was to put a new pulley on the main engine with three sheaves. The first two would be for the 190 AMP POWERLINE alternator. The third sheave would be for the water pump, with an idler for belt adjustment. Since I was having a new pulley machined, I had it drilled to fit the puller that I had on the boat.
While Gunnar and I were conferring on the new pulley system, I asked his opinion about a clean way to change the oil. He suggested that I install an AMSOIL dual filter bypass filtration system. This system uses a synthetic lubricant, and it also uses two filters. One filter is a 7-10 micron standard full flow filter and the second filter is a 1 micron bypass filter that only filters one third of the lubricant in any given time frame. The great part about this system is that you change filters and add lubricant, but you never drain the lubricant out of the engine. The full flow filter is changed every 300 hours of run time and the bypass filter is changed every 600 hours of run time. This sounded like a great solution, so I purchased two like systems, one for the main engine, the second for the generator. I also put the synthetic lubricant in the transmission and the injector pump. This system would also help spares storage as I would have one lubricant for both engines and the same filters for both engines. I cannot say that all of the marketing stuff for the AMSOIL system is true, but I know that the lubricant in the main engine is much cleaner looking since the installation of the system. You are familiar with an old engine, after you change the oil and filter the oil is black after a few hours of running. This is not happening any more and the main engine has over 3000 hours on it that I know of.
To install the idler for the water pump belt, I had to remove the forward starboard side motor mount. When I did this I discovered that the mounts were bolted to the engine bed with mild steel bolts, that twisted off on the wrench. Another project was in the offing! I removed the motor mount, cleaned, and painted the mount. I also drilled and tapped the mount for the idler pulley. This mount was re-installed with all stainless steel fasteners, and the idler worked beautifully on the water pump belt. The next item was to remove the remainder of the motor mounts, clean and paint them and re-install with all new stainless steel fasteners. Since I was in the area and had some space, I wire brushed the engine, cleaned it up, primered and painted all that I could get to.
When I got the new pulley installed on the main engine and the new idler and the alternator, I tried to get the same size belt to fit the alternator and the water pump, but it did not happen! I now have one size belt for the alternator plus four spares, and a different size belt for the water pump plus two spares. The remainder of the work done was cleaning and painting as much of the bilge as I could get to.