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View Poll Results: What are the total engine-hours on your Atomic 4?
More than 1,000 34 18.48%
More than 2,000 16 8.70%
More than 3,000 4 2.17%
More than 4,000 4 2.17%
More than 5,000 0 0%
More than 6,000 3 1.63%
No idea, but I'll bet it's a bunch! 123 66.85%
Voters: 184. You may not vote on this poll

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  #26   IP: 24.5.197.134
Old 10-16-2009, 03:34 AM
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engine hours

Rick I would think some where around 5000 hr. to ?

Tony
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  #27   IP: 65.33.144.42
Old 10-16-2009, 06:21 AM
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The engine I took out of my boat last year, due to the rear seal having let go,
had just about 6,000 hours on it.

Perhaps Don can chime in on what he saw when he opened it up.

-jonathan
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  #28   IP: 142.68.246.76
Old 10-17-2009, 06:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jhwelch View Post
due to the rear seal having let go
jonathon, does that mean catastrophic failure, or slow leak slowly getting worse?
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  #29   IP: 65.33.144.42
Old 10-17-2009, 07:04 AM
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It was a slow leak that progressively got worse to the point where oil would
drip out overnight and I'd have to add a little bit every morning I was
motoring north up the ICW.

When the motor was opened up Don told me they found some interesting
worm-like erosion patterns, I think it was on the crankshaft, but he'll
have to clarify the exact location.
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  #30   IP: 74.40.167.110
Old 10-17-2009, 10:24 AM
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I was told my engine had 250 hours on it when I bought it five years ago. Since then, I've but less than 50 hours on it since the sails go up as soon as I'm away from the slip.
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  #31   IP: 206.125.176.3
Old 10-19-2009, 01:20 PM
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Lightbulb

I selected - "no idea..." - but I also just bought an hour meter to put on the engine..I wonder if I could plug it into a 12v source to run it up to 800-900 hours which is what I suspect the motor has on it so it is more accurate when I install it?

Really, I bought the meter so I can track my own usage more carefully since taking ownership & fuel consumption. My wife and I were trying to count the hours this year based on memory (I am very bad about filling out the log book), and the best I can come up with from an estimate of consuming 29-30 gallons of fuel is about 35-40 hours, assuming .75 gal/hour.

Next season, I hope to use the boat more, and have more accurate numbers!
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  #32   IP: 173.79.222.18
Old 10-19-2009, 01:43 PM
Jesse Delanoy Jesse Delanoy is offline
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I never had an engine hours meter, but I installed one when I repowered with a MM rebuilt engine three seasons ago. I find it highly useful to monitor fuel consumption (like Shawn, I see about 0.75 gal. per hour, unless I'm running right up around 2000 rpm, then it's just under a gallon), and to keep me on track for regular oil changes. I log the hours in a notebook at every gas fill-up and every oil change. In three seasons of use, I've logged about 300 hours, although last year got cut short due to some hull and keel damage, and we lost a lot of sailing time this year due to rainy weather. I just wish I'd installed the thing in a more convenient location - as it is on the front of the engine compartment, about a foot off the floor in the main cabin - and my eyesight isn't getting any better with age!
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  #33   IP: 206.125.176.3
Old 10-19-2009, 04:11 PM
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Jesse - good thinking..I was trying to decide where to mount it..at least I know where NOT to. (if I recall correctly, you have a C-30 also)

Anytime we drill holes in the boat it seems so permanent! I've already moved my Racor filter!

I was assuming for hookup, this is just another device that connects to the coil...assuming the coil is energized, the meter is running, and the engine is running.
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"Twice Around" - '77 Catalina 30, #511 with original A-4 & MMI manifold.
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  #34   IP: 173.79.222.18
Old 10-19-2009, 05:19 PM
Jesse Delanoy Jesse Delanoy is offline
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yup, 1977 Cat 30, no. 664.


yes, the meter has three wires:

hot - should be connected to constant 12 volt power - it's ok if this wire is cold when boat power is off - it just provides power when needed. I made sure to double check that the meter retains engine hours in memory, and does not go back to zero if all power is shut off, like radio station memories do (another story for a later time!).

sending - should be connected to a 12 volt power source hot only when the engine is running - this is the coil connection. I think it's hot even when the engine is off, if the ignition circuit is on - but since this is never the case on my boat except for very brief periods, it's not an issue.

ground - obvious.

Best place I can think of to mount it in our boats would be at the end of the galley counter, as high up as possible, opposite from the chart table, making sure to keep the wiring clear of the drawers in the galley console. If there's enough clearance between the back of the gauge and the sides of the drawers - not sure.
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  #35   IP: 206.125.176.3
Old 10-20-2009, 11:58 AM
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Jesse, thanks..I currently have my little automotive tach there, and I ran the wires external to the cabinet, down behind the cushion, in case I wanted to move it.
I ordered an analog hour meter so I won't have the memory problem, and I would expect my coil/ignition circuit to work the same way..powered only very briefly during start up procedures with the engine not running. Should be negligible.

I seem to recall there is probably enough room inside the cabinet for wires, but maybe not a 2" deep cutout for my analog meter. When I rebuilt my cabinet, I extended the counter top about 3" since you can't really effectively utilize that little area anyway...I have a little extra overhang for more instruments now
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"Twice Around" - '77 Catalina 30, #511 with original A-4 & MMI manifold.
She is always happy with a clean bottom!

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  #36   IP: 99.6.130.173
Old 02-19-2010, 11:28 PM
mike boyd sr mike boyd sr is offline
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atomic 4 hrs

hey don would this be hrs since original install or recient rebuild thanx
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  #37   IP: 38.102.16.210
Old 06-08-2010, 07:44 AM
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Hi, Mike, and welcome to the forum.

I'm guessing that most folks would interpret the question as asking about the hours since the original install.

Bill
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  #38   IP: 24.224.206.117
Old 08-05-2010, 11:00 PM
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Smile

The engine in my C&C 30 has 1378 hrs on it. Runs like a dream although it sat unattended high and dry in the boat for a couple of years. Hauled it apart, cleaned it up... the major problem was the exhaust manifold froze and cracked.

I also have a full drop in "freshwater" great lakes engine that a friend sold me last year. He went for a diesel just because...well, he is a marine engineer so diesel is his thing. That one has less hrs on it and looks better cosmetically than mine. It and ran perfect the day I helped him pull it.

So, there's 2 with less than 2000 on them.
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  #39   IP: 64.203.32.52
Old 08-06-2010, 11:53 AM
Dave Neptune Dave Neptune is offline
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Smile Dave's lil beastie

I don't have an hour meter so all I can do is guess. As some of you may no when I bought the Volador 26 years ago the engine was rusted/frozen tight. At that time it had set in the slip fro 5 years as the 3 guys I bought her from only used the boat as a plase to bring their girlfriends so their wives wouldn't find out. Well they found out just as I was walking by to hand a check to a guy further down the marina for a differant E-35 and I wound up making them an offer "as is" with an engine that wouldn't start or turn. It took me 5 days to get her running and I have used the boat a lot since. The original owner used the boat for 6 years cruising and racing and I have no idea how much he used it other than it sat due to his heart problems for a couple of years until those 3 bought her.
I'm guessing she has about 2000/2500 hours on it in forty years of ticking. That number may be a little high so I'm putting in 2000 hours which may be a bit high.
I will attest to the durability of the A-4. A friend of mine who worked on them as a marine mechanic said he saw many of them with over 4000 hours and still in good shape if they were properly maintained. He also said many were trashed due to neglect with only a few hundred hours on them.

I am planning on doing a compression check this weekend to satisfy my and others curiosity. I will use my screw in Snap-on guage.

Dave Neptune
Volador's A-4 about 2000 hours and a valve job 26 years ago.
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  #40   IP: 148.170.241.1
Old 10-25-2010, 01:03 PM
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I had to select "no idea" but I do bet it's a bunch.

The boat is a 1968 model; the engine is 1983. The engine hours meter is non-functional and apparently has been for some time.
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  #41   IP: 71.112.20.90
Old 03-21-2011, 12:14 AM
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I have 395 on a local rebuild. When purchased in 08 she had less than 40 on rebuild, not even broken in yet...We don't let the wind gods dictate when we go....
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  #42   IP: 24.224.206.117
Old 08-21-2011, 11:25 AM
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Smile More hrs than usual this year....

Installed a new hour meter this spring. Old one had 1378 prior to changing it; 47 hours currently on the new meter this year. Chartplotter records my mileage and it is 709 nm currently for this year. That is more engine time than I normally rack up. A few times I had to motor home in driving hail, no wind on one cruise...small things like that add to the hours. To give you an idea, due to weather, I am about 600 nm short of last years mileage for this time. The hours on the engine are about the same.

Currently coming up for her 3rd oil change this year. I change it at the beginning of season, about mid June, then around mid August. Boat laid up due to steering failure a few days ago, so while I wait for parts, some preventive maintenance.
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Last edited by Mo; 08-22-2011 at 09:30 AM.
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  #43   IP: 173.69.152.238
Old 08-21-2011, 01:18 PM
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Update:
My "new engine", installed in May, was assumed to be relatively low time when installed based on condition when torn down.

I now have 38 hours since installing it and so far the oil is clear and NONE has leaked out or burned
This is confusing me - the old engine did both with enthusiasm
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  #44   IP: 64.229.64.162
Old 09-08-2011, 12:42 PM
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Ranger 30

I currently own a Ranger 30 and have had very little problems with my A4.
I have a maintenance question. The rervoir for the transmission has a shallow well for lubricant. Is there a proper level to look for or do we assume as long as engine oil level is good then all is good.
New member but have owned two boats with A4. Previous was C&C 35 Mk 1
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Old 09-08-2011, 06:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bingy View Post
The rervoir for the transmission has a shallow well for lubricant. Is there a proper level to look for or do we assume as long as engine oil level is good then all is good.
Yes. The reversing gear and crankcase share a common oil pan. There is no separate reservoir for the reversing gear.
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  #46   IP: 64.231.114.164
Old 09-09-2011, 10:39 AM
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I have to travel up and down the Detroit River which sometimes require 3 to 4 hours running at continuous speed between 5.5 and 6 knots due to adverse currents and wind.
The motor seems to be working a little harder after 3 or so hours.
I am worried about possible thrust bearing or other bearing becoming hot .
Motor has fresh oil,cooling system flushed ,stuffing box very slow drip.
Any comments appreciated
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  #47   IP: 206.125.176.3
Old 09-09-2011, 02:12 PM
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bingy, you may want to start a new thread in the appropriate section of the forum..it will likely get more attention.
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"Twice Around" - '77 Catalina 30, #511 with original A-4 & MMI manifold.
She is always happy with a clean bottom!

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  #48   IP: 141.0.9.76
Old 11-05-2011, 11:41 AM
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Talking

I have a 1976 FWC A4 with reduction drive. 2100 hours, compression 110 all cylinders and oil lab results show no problems. I change oil @ 25 hours . Amazing engine
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  #49   IP: 184.0.176.66
Old 04-19-2012, 08:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpohrille View Post
I have a 1976 FWC A4 with reduction drive. 2100 hours, compression 110 all cylinders and oil lab results show no problems. I change oil @ 25 hours . Amazing engine
May we see some pictures?
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  #50   IP: 68.56.139.11
Old 06-09-2012, 02:39 AM
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Interesting thread. I have a few thoughts and questions.

In the 80s, I was at a Honda power equipment presentation. They told us that the usual rebuild time was 2000 hours. I think that I have also heard that figure elsewhere.

Doing some fuzzy math: Consider a car: 50 mph times 2000 hours equals 100,000 miles. How does that sound?

I also wonder about hour meters. I had a 1965 Chris Craft cabin cruiser with a 283 Chevy inboard. It had a mechanical tachometer and hour meter. The manual said that one hour equaled a certain number or revolutions, and it was not based on time. I think it was 3000 RPM, but I am not sure. So one hour at 3000 RPM was one hour on the meter.

As I understand it, engine hour meters are just clocks. I have an old stewart warner engine hour gauge that I took apart. It has a clock mechanism in it. Pretty cool.

I guess for our engines, run at the same RPM for long hours, an hour is an hour. The RPM, whether 1400 or 2400 probably is not significant.

So, how about that 4700 hour engine? Say the boat runs at 6 knots.
6 nautical miles/hour times 4700 hours equals: 28,000 nautical miles
Now that is more then the circumference of the earth!!

2000 hours at 6 knots equals: 12000 nautical miles. How does that compare with 100,000 automotive miles?

I ran down the ICW from Annapolis to Florida, about 1000 nautical miles.

1000 nautical miles equals 6 knots times 167 hours. Does that mean that I ran the engine for 167 hours? If I ran for 8 hours a day, which sounds right, it comes out to 21 days. That is what my log book says too.

Then the question is how many miles would 167 hours be on a car. Since the engine is running at almost full power, compare to a car going at 100 MPH.
167 hours times 100 mph equals: 16,100 miles. That sounds right to me.

Getting back to the 4700 hour engine. How many car miles would that be?
4700 hours times 100 miles per hour equals : 470,000 miles.
Earth circumference is 24,901 miles, according to wiki.
That means that at 4700 hours, a car would have gone, at 100 MPH, 18.9 times around the earth.

So it is 130 am and I am sitting here in front of my computer, at home, and not snuggling my wife, in the Vee berth, swinging on the hook....

Then again; if a sailboat leave the dock heading north at 4.5 knots, with a 12 knot sw wind........
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