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  #1   IP: 172.226.66.94
Old 12-31-2022, 11:31 AM
MicahHall MicahHall is offline
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Pulling and Selling my A4

I have a 1973 A4 30hp, it runs but needs an overhaul. I have it listed on eBay and FB Marketplace for $1750. Itís on the boat still near Reedville Virginia. Wondering if anyone on here is looking for an engine at a good price?
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  #2   IP: 73.149.15.136
Old 12-31-2022, 07:28 PM
wagner wagner is offline
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Hi there, quick question-why are you removing the engine and what factors indicate the engine needs an overhaul/rebuild?
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Old 01-01-2023, 09:49 AM
MicahHall MicahHall is offline
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Iím pulling because I bought a project boat, and working on an engine this size is more work than I have the knowledge or garage space to feel comfortable diving into. I know a little about engines, but itís from years of working on single cylinder motorcycles and small engines. I havenít owned many larger vehicles, so I feel like switching an older inboard for an outboard motor would be more manageable for my skill set. Iím also quite new to sailing and boating, so simplifying the process is a priority.

In answer to the second question, Iím pretty sure the head gasket is blown. Compression on the first cylinder is low, and the plug was also pretty fouled. There is some water intrusion that exits the vent into the air intake. I ran the engine for about 10 hours (not continuous) before that began, and I shut it down as soon as I saw it. I didnít have any periods of extended cranking to start it, so I donít think it came from prolonged starting.
The exhaust smells rich, and also blows some white smoke, so this makes me think the valves at least need adjusting and the rings may need replacing.
The water jacket (I think thatís the right name) is pretty rusty, but the bolts looks relatively new. So I know some work has been done over the years, but Iím not sure to what extent.

But again, I donít have a lot of experience with these engines, so it may be better than I think or it may be worse.
I think if I had the garage space (I donít actually have any garage at all) I would consider digging into it myself and figuring it out over time. But alas, this one is destined to be someone elseís project.
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Old 01-01-2023, 11:05 AM
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A few words of advice:
$1750 is VERY optimistic for an engine that needs work. One can probably find similar engines that someone just wants hauled away.
Most boats designed for inboards do not do that well with outboards.
Good outboards are not cheap.
The engine is easy to work on and there is a huge body of knowledge between the official Moyer manuals and this forum.
I would give this plan some second thoughts. If all the engine needs is a head gasket, that is not necessarily all that hard to do. One of my buddies blew a head gasket, so we took him under tow for an hour or two while he put a new gasket on and then he was underway again.
I would first off do a compression check and a block leakage check to get an idea of what we are dealing with.
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Old 01-01-2023, 11:59 AM
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Joe beat me to it.
I recommend that you keep the A4 and work on it along with the rest of the project. In my opinion working on the A4 will require less technical knowledge than a lot of other major boat projects, and with the help of this forum, you can do it.
In addition, moving several hundred pounds from the engine space to the extreme stern of the boat really alters the sailing characteristics of the boat. Also, consider the resale value of an inboard boat without an inboard motor.
Beyond that, if you think working on an A4 is beyond your capabilities, poke around inside an outboard sometime. I think they're a nightmare compared to the A4.
Do a few basic diagnostic tests on the motor- compression, pressure test, etc, and if you find the engine to be beyond your capabilities or your desire to repair, I'd still suggest you replace it with another A4. Good condition used A4s will be comparable or less than the cost of an outboard.
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Old 01-01-2023, 12:02 PM
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My 2Ę regarding value and price:

I'm not in the market but the only way I'd consider any price is if it passed a cooling system pressure test which is easy to do in place. Such a test would be a good selling point.

As an example of potential value to a buyer, several years ago I acquired a running take out engine. It ran but had problems and there was no testing prior to my acquisition. Up to this point, a similar story to yours. It was free, just haul it away. The first thing I did when I got it home was a cooling system pressure test which it passed. At that point I knew I had something to rebuild. Even still it took $1000.00 in parts and machine work and a couple of months to bring it back to proper condition.

I acquired another partial engine (disassembled, missing the head, manifold, distributor and carb). The block had a visible internal crack so rebuilding was not an option. This one was free too.
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Old 01-01-2023, 04:41 PM
MicahHall MicahHall is offline
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Thanks everyone for the replies. Iím a guy who likes projects, and Iím in agreement with everyone who says itís better to keep it and work on it. Unfortunately it really isnít possible. A different time, different circumstances, and Iíd be following your suggestion.

I do appreciate the input on price/value as well. Understanding the engine is a big part of understanding itís value, and the test suggestions will be taken. Thereís a lot I have to learn, and I didnít intend to put out a price that was unreasonable.

That said: Iíd still love to find a buyer at a reasonable price. Iíd also be happy to part it out if anyone needs something specific. The starter, alternator, carburetor, fuel pump, and thermostat all work, and all are only a few years old.

Thanks again for the kind responses.
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Old 01-01-2023, 05:43 PM
Dave Neptune Dave Neptune is offline
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Lightbulb Perhaps both

How about clamping an OB on and playing with the A-4 in spare time in the boat? I've seen some pretty amazing work done in that manner and you can still take her out when frustrated or even with family & friends.

If the block passes a pressure test you could most likely breath life into one of these extremely tough engines without the PIA of removing everything tied to the engine.

Dave Neptune
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Old 01-01-2023, 06:29 PM
wagner wagner is offline
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Micah, I like Daveís suggestion: clamp a small OB to the stern, go sailing. Work on the A4 incrementally, in the boat, when you can. Iíve learned a ton about mechanics and troubleshooting by working on the engine.

I bought a Sabre 28 a few years ago with a non working A4. With the help of this forum, I got the engine going and sailed a great season. After that season we diagnosed stuck valves and decided to swap the A4 out for another one. We found a great running, only used in fresh water, A4 on eBay in Chicago. With freight it was $1500, and was running on a pallet in my driveway within an hour. Another $600 later it was in the boat and running.

I now have two more run-able A4 motors and one parts motor all obtained for about $100 from local boat yards who were scrapping boats.

All that to say, they arenít worth much to anybody other than us afourians, and we are always trying to make new converts to our belief system.
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Old 01-01-2023, 09:25 PM
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I was given a free Atomic 4 many years ago. Owners wife was insisting on a new diesel because the A4 was smoking up the cabin and leaking oil.
I didn't need it but brought it home and went at it. This was before the cooling system pressure test was the norm.
Leaking oil? Replaced the transmission oil seal.
Smoking up the cabin? Rings were shot. Lower oil rings had like 1/8" end clearance - they were just along for the ride! Replaced the rings.
Valves had a lot of carbon build-up. Too much MMO in the fuel? Who knows. Cleaned that up, did a decent valve job. Put it all back together. Sat in the basement for like 3 years. Wife protested after a while but I told her not to worry.
Engine in boat goes belly up. Bring boat close to the crane, old engine out in the afternoon, replacement in place the next morning. Autopsy of old engine shows a cracked block, cracked in the valve area. It either went to the junk yard or somewhere else as a 'teaching aid' - not sure.
Compared to an outboard, the Atomic 4 is stone simple. No reed valves, etc. Recommend you fix your A4.
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  #11   IP: 172.226.66.68
Old 01-01-2023, 10:05 PM
MicahHall MicahHall is offline
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I would recommend you buy my A4 at a real good price and you fix it. 😊
If I was able to, I would. I am not able, and am not really comfortable elaborating on why Iím not able except to say that it is not convenient and feasible at this time for me.
What I need to do is sell the engine. I understand why this doesnít make sense to many people, but it makes sense to me.
So if youíd like to buy an engine, Iíd love to talk.
If I wanted advice on fixing the engine I wouldnít have posted in the ďEngine for saleĒ category.
No disrespect, just stating explicitly what I thought was stated obviously before.
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  #12   IP: 138.207.177.95
Old 01-01-2023, 11:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MicahHall View Post
I would recommend you buy my A4 at a real good price and you fix it. 😊
If I was able to, I would. I am not able, and am not really comfortable elaborating on why Iím not able except to say that it is not convenient and feasible at this time for me.
What I need to do is sell the engine. I understand why this doesnít make sense to many people, but it makes sense to me.
So if youíd like to buy an engine, Iíd love to talk.
If I wanted advice on fixing the engine I wouldnít have posted in the ďEngine for saleĒ category.
No disrespect, just stating explicitly what I thought was stated obviously before.
OK, you need to sell the engine. I hate to tell you the bad news, but I cannot imagine how you can sell a non-running A4 for much more than scrap metal value.
When I swapped out my bad A4 for a good one last time, I think I ended up just giving it away.
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  #13   IP: 172.225.30.87
Old 01-02-2023, 06:46 AM
MicahHall MicahHall is offline
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Itís a running engine. So thereís that.

Again, I asked if anyone needed an engine or parts.


So, if anyone needs an engine or parts, from a running engine, just send me a private message and we can talk.
If you donít need an engine, no need to send me a message, just keep having a nice day. 😊
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  #14   IP: 138.207.177.95
Old 01-03-2023, 11:30 AM
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If you are looking to maximize cash return, it could be that engine is not that far away from being an OK runner. It might just need a bit of help with the cooling.
If you have any way to spend a day down there, it might be well worth your while. Last cooling issue I had was a fish stuck in the intake
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