Engine Mounting

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Replacing engine mounts
Oct 17, 2012 STORY AND PHOTOS BY HARRY HUNGATE
Engine mounts play a key role in preventing engine vibration from passing to the boat. These mounts were not aligned properly prior to installation.
If your engine mounts are more than five or six years old, or have been contaminated with seawater, engine oil or coolant, change them. Even if the mounts look perfect, the tough elastomer (rubber-like) material in the engine mount work-hardens over time and ceases to isolate the boat from the engine’s vibrations. Seawater rusts the metal parts of the mount and can cause delamination of the elastomer and metal parts. Rust also weakens the mounting bolts and in extreme cases can cause bolt failure. Engine oil and coolant deteriorates the elastomer and also hastens delamination.
Poorly aligned engine mounts can also cause bolt failure. And, if you have noticed screws backing out on your boat, or if your oil pressure sensor has failed recently, then the root cause may be increased vibration due to bad engine mounts (or a misaligned shaft.)
This unit has a fractured mounting stud.
Engine mounts are designed specifically for each family of engines. The physical dimensions are an obvious requirement, but the dynamic response of the mount itself is not so obvious. While an aftermarket replacement mount will fit your engine, it may not necessarily damp the engine vibrations over the operating range. Specify replacement mounts from the engine manufacturer, or after-market mounts that have given satisfactory service on an engine identical to yours. Avoid experimentation as it is both costly and aggravating.
While waiting for your new engine mounts to arrive, measure the heights of each mount above the engine bed. Using a felt tip marker, place a mark on the engine bed and on the engine mounting arm so you can duplicate the measurement later. Make a sketch of the engine and write the dimensions down on the sketch. A digital caliper makes this job easy.
Repeat the measurement several times to determine an average reading. These measurements will be of great help in aligning the engine on the new mounts. Take the time to squirt some Liquid Wrench or other rust-breaker solvent onto the bolts, holding the engine mounts to the engine beds, and to the nuts above and below the stud that fastens the mount to the engine proper. Getting all of these fasteners free is important.
Inspect the engine carefully for water, oil, and coolant leaks. Repair these now before installing the new engine mounts. Inspect the exhaust mixer elbow carefully as it might be leaking. It is just above one of the mounts and any leak will drop onto the mount. Fix it now — it will probably take longer than you think!
Yanmar mounts are manufactured specifically for each side of the engine. That is, either the starter side or the oil filter side, as engine torque will change the effective loading on either side of the engine. Make sure that you get the mounts positioned on the correct side of the engine.
With a felt tip marker, make a “witness mark” on the two halves of the shaft coupling before removing the coupling bolts. Using a flat-blade screwdriver, separate the coupling halves an inch or so to allow the engine to move free of the shaft. Soak the bolts in some rust remover. Do not try to raise the engine without first disconnecting the shaft coupling.
Digital calipers are used to measure the mounting height.
The next step is to raise the engine off the mounts by using the adjusting nuts on each mount, and a series of wooden blocks of various thicknesses. Be very careful and think your way through each step. Replace one mount at a time, as you surely do not want the engine to fall. A pair or two of wooden wedges is very handy in blocking up the engine. Cut these on a power saw before you start this project.
Before removing each mount, note the position of the enlarged mounting hole or slot on one end of the old mount. Install the new mount accordingly.
Clean the engine bed of rust and debris before installing the new mount.
Install all of the bed bolts in each mount, but do not tighten them yet, as you will need to move the mounts to align the engine.
After all four new mounts are installed, and the engine lowered onto them, let the engine sit for a day or so to “settle” the mounts. The elastomer will compress a bit. If you align the engine immediately after replacing the mounts, the engine will drop a bit on the new mounts and negate your fresh alignment job.
Using your digital calipers, restore the engine to the original height per your sketch. Carefully clean both faces of the shaft coupling as any grit or corrosion will prevent an accurate alignment. Reconnect the halves of the shaft coupling. Remember to observe the witness marks to return the coupling halves to their original orientation. Install only one coupling bolt and nut loosely — just barely finger-tight. Using a feeler gauge, align the engine horizontally and then vertically. A rule of thumb is to get the alignment to less than one thousandth of an inch per inch of coupling diameter; i.e., to within 0.004 thousandths of an inch for a four-inch diameter coupling.
Repeat the vertical and horizontal alignments a few times, as each adjustment will change the other. Take your time and get the engine aligned as close to perfection as possible. There are several good YouTube videos on how to align a shaft or coupling if you are new to this game.
Drilling an engine bed bolt hole with right angle drill.
After making an adjustment, give the engine a few good shakes to settle it before checking the alignment with the feeler gauge. When you are satisfied with the alignment, tighten all of the engine mount bolts. If one or more of the engine bed bolt holes require redrilling, a right angle drill will make quick work of the job.
Check the alignment once more with the feeler gauge, clean the faces of the shaft coupling, and replace the coupling bolts after cleaning the threads with acetone and applying a drop or two of blue Loctite on the threads of each bolt.
Check all of the engine mount bolts for tightness before starting the engine. Run the engine in gear, over a wide range of revolutions, listening and feeling for any vibration. Shut the engine down and feel the coupling. A properly aligned coupling will not be hot.
————-
Harry Hungate and his wife Jane replaced their engine mounts in Gaeta, Italy, last year before crossing the Atlantic Ocean. They are now cruising the U.S. East Coast aboard their Corbin 39 Cormorant.
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  • Published over 300 website main topic webpages, many with full articles on the topic. See our Website Contents or the Right Sidebar for the listing of the main topic pages.
  • Published over 9,000 marine vendor webpages, all with their contact information, most with a description of their products and services, many with product documentation, specifications and independent reviews. (incl.: Boat designers, boat building tools, material and equipment manufacturers and suppliers, boat builders and dealers, yacht brokers, marine surveyors, boat insurers, boat transporters, skippers and crews, boatyards and marinas, yacht clubs, boat rentals and yacht charters, boating, seamanship and maritime schools, marine law attorneys and expert witnesses, boat refitters and repairers, book authors and publishers, and video producers)
  • Acquired over 120,000 pages of product documentation including Catalogs, Brochures, SpecSheets, Pictures, Serial Number Guides, Installation Manuals, OpManuals, Parts Schematics, Parts Bulletins, Shop Manuals, Wiring Diagrams, Service Bulletins, and Recalls. And have made all viewable to Academy Members through our EAB website.
  • Acquired over 1,200 books and magazine back issues in our academy library and so far have made over 700 viewable to Academy Members through our EAB website.
  • Published over 500 DIY How-To articles about boat design, construction, inspection, operation, maintenance, troubleshooting and repair. We are working hard to do more.

We are currently formatting and polishing the Anchors Aweigh Academy online and hands-on courses. Our Marine Surveying course has proven to be excellent for both the beginner and the seasoned surveyor, and especially helpful to the Do-It-Yourselfer.


Current Academy Members must SIGN IN to gain FULL access to this
website including expanded pages and valuable Academy programs
like our Academy eLibrary and our Ask-An-Expert Program!

If your membership has expired, CLICK HERE to Renew.

IF YOU ARE NOT YET AN ANCHORS AWEIGH ACADEMY MEMBER,
CLICK HERE to discover how you can become a Member and gain FULL access to
thousands of expanded pages and articles, and dozens of excellent programs
WITH JUST A SMALL DONATION!


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General Comments About the Website

FROM Donald: "This is an awesome website. I found the information that I needed right away from one of the over 20,000 free articles that you provide as a public service. I'm surprised that so much if this site is free. But I still signed up so I could access the thousands of expanded pages, interesting articles, and dozens of valuable programs! The member's library of books, magazines and videos that I can view online is really terrific! I understand that you and your staff are all unpaid volunteers. Please keep up the good work. And I commend you for your plans to add another 10,000 free informative articles over the next year. I'm thrilled to support you in this endeavor with my small membership donation. Thanks again for all your hard work."

FROM Huey: "I agree with my Uncle, I too have found the articles to be very enlightening. They say that it will take about 100,000 articles to cover the full scope that they have envisioned for the website. They have over 20,000 articles so far and that's doing pretty well, but it could take several years to get the rest. I also noticed that many of the Main Topic Pages and some of the article pages are still in the rough draft stage. I guess that they will fill in as they can get volunteers to work on them. But what I can't figure out is why anyone would spend the time writing informative in depth articles just to give away free to this website for publication? What's in it for them?"

FROM Dewey: "Well Huey, to me It looks like most of the articles on this website are written by very informed people, like boating instructors, boat designers, boat builders, riggers, electricians, fitters, marine repair technicians and marine surveyors. Writing such articles helps establish them as knowledgeable professionals. After all, this website was originally created by a school for marine technicians and marine surveyors. The website is growing in content every day. They even had to move to a bigger, more powerful server because the website's traffic has been growing exponentially."

FROM Louie: "I agree with everyone above. This site is quickly becoming the ultimate reference resource about every aspect of boats and ships for everyone from the beginning recreational boater to the seasoned professional mariner. I use the topic pages on the right sidebar to browse around the website. It's like a Junior Woodchucks' Guidebook for Boaters. Their Members' Library of over 300 popular and obscure books and over 200 magazine back issues that can be viewed online is fabulous. The Academy's magazine is especially informative. On top of that, there is the "Ask-An-Expert program for members where you can get an expert's answer to any of your boat questions. And a whole years membership is only $25. What a deal! I really love being part of this "Everything About Boats" community and help provide thousands of helpful articles free to the public. I think that I'll sit down right now and write an article about my experiences boating with my uncle."

FROM Scrooge: "You rave about this website like it was the best thing since sliced bread. Well, I think it stinks. Sure, it has a lot of good information for boaters, and they're adding more every day, but it will probably never be finished. Furthermore, I don't even own a boat. And I wouldn't have a boat even if someone gave me one. Boats are a waste of money and time and energy and money! They're just a hole in the water you pour money into. If you gave me a boat, I'd sell it quicker then you could say Baggywrinkle. Then I'd lock up the cash with all my other money so I could keep my eye on it and count it every day. Bah humbug."

FROM Daisy: "I'm just so glad that Donald got the boat so we and the boys could enjoy boating — together. And of course all of the girls, April, May, and June, love to be on the water too, especially when that is where the boys are. Oh poor Scrooge, boating is more fun then you could possibly imagine."

FROM Scrooge: "After seeing how much fun you all have on the water together, I regret that I didn't have that much fun when I was young. I've had a change of heart, and I'm giving each of you a Lifetime Academy Membership."

FROM Editor: "For those of you that have stayed with us this far, many thanks. You inspire us to keep working on this phenomenal website. We know that we have a lot more to do. Ultimately, we hope that we can help you enjoy the wonder filled world of boating as much as we do. We are all waiting to see what you have to say about this webpage article. Submit any comments via email To: Comments♥EverythingAboutBoats.org (Replace "♥" with "@"). Be sure to include this page's title in the subject line. Also, your corrections, updates, additions and suggestions are welcomed. Please submit them via email To: Editor♥EverythingAboutBoats.org (Replace "♥" with "@"). It has been truly amazing to see what we have been able to accomplished when we've worked together. Thanks to all those that have donated their valuable time and energy, and a special THANK YOU to all that have supported this cause with their membership donations."

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