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When we decided to walk away from purchasing the Amel that we surveyed in Puerto Rico, and instead purchase Aita Pea Pea, now Frost, the seller of the original Maramu, was undoubtedly upset. Knowing that our boat was powered by one of the original Perkins engines, as opposed to a Yanmar that he had re-powered his with, he made a fairly snarky comment to us, something to the effect of “good luck trying to find parts for it.” Mature, right?

That comment has been in the back of my mind since that time though, and I have questioned others about its validity. Many people have told me that Perkins engines are so common that finding parts is not a problem. Some reading that I did suggested that while that may be true for certain models, our engine, the 4.154, was not quite as prolific.

Immediately after limping in to Prickly Bay on Thursday, I removed the leaky raw water pump from our Perkins and dropped it off on shore so that the guys from Palm Tree Marine could pick it up. After he had a chance to look at it, Mike from Palm Tree called to explain that the shaft on the pump was quite worn, and that was what was causing the leak. He believed that they’d be able to get it working, but that “it would not be a good fix,” and that we’d need a new shaft for it at some point, or a new pump altogether.

Once the pump was reassembled in their shop, I asked if one of their mechanics could come and reinstall it. I did that in case there was still a leak after putting everything back together (I didn’t want my installation to be blamed for it). As it turns out, that is exactly what happened, it still leaked. While the amount of water seeping out of the pump had been stemmed, it was obviously still not fixed. Unfortunately, to our knowledge, there is no replacement pump on the island!

After I reminded Mike that we had guests arriving on Sunday, he made some calls to see if he could enlist the help of a machinist to work on the pump over the weekend. I need to remove it again this morning and bring it back in to him. I also exercised my Google-Fu to see what was available online. I found that Depco lists the part that I need, a Jabsco 11850-0701. I emailed them yesterday inquiring about inventory and shipping but have not yet heard back. Other searches show that the part is discontinued and/or unavailable. Perhaps we have been cursed by that other boat’s owner? 🙂

Note: My internet searches also found some references to a replacement pump for this engine, the Sherwood H5 (shown above). I’d love to hear if anyone has any experiences with this pump, specifically relating to installation challenges, and if the existing wheel for the belt can be used with it.

28 Comments

  1. Mike,

    No worries. We have the Yanmar, and still most parts can take a while for delivery.

    Your part may take a while, but you’ll find it eventually.

    Cheerio,

  2. I’ll start off saying that I dont have familiarity with this particular engine, But I am a pretty good mechanic. If that pump is as it appears, a surface mounted centrifugal pump then I think that you will be able to find – if not the exact pump – a close enough replacement. The only unique part is just the bolt on plate that could be modified to bolt onto another similar pump.

  3. I have had good luck with Depco. They looked at my old raw water pump, declared it DOA, and sold me a new one for 2/3 price of one from my local Westerbeke dealer. Even painted it Westerbeke red, ha.

    Their comment was: It is worth rebuilding a pump if you catch it just when it starts leaking. Then it is just replacing seals. But when salt water gets to the bearings, the cost of a rebuild approaches the cost of new.

  4. No curse, just an old engine that needs more patience and pampering along with a larger stock of spare parts. You’ll get there.
    I’m sure at some point when aboard Frost , knowing my Bud-in-ski tendencies, I might of said what I’d do in that engine room. Have a good place with plenty of time somewhere and start stripping out everything easily gotten to, clean and degrease the whole engine room, paint and replace all with new hoses etc. etc. Call it, bonding with the beast before the beast beats you down. I know you don’t have the time right now but I do recommend that you do something similar to that old dirty iron girl before you head way down south. You’ve gone thoroughly through other parts of the boat, don’t leave that one out. Call me Bud. 🙂

  5. For Perkins parts we have found that Trans Atlantic Diesel in White Marsh Virginia is THE place to go. Sherry Moon answers the phone and is very knowledgable and easy to work with. We had our engine rebuilt there and found their shop to be clean and neat. Their number is -(804) 642-9296 Please feel free to use our names, D and Don Wogaman from SV SOUTHERN CROSS so we can get our “brownie points” in. We had injector pump issues last year and they were extremely helpful. Good luck!

  6. Mike, for expensive parts like a crankshaft that have suffered seal wear (typically a groove right where the seal touches the shaft), repair sleeves are typically available. These are thin stainless steel sleeves that slide (barely, with some force) over the damaged shaft and are secured with locktite. They work wonderfully. Perhaps a repair sleeve is available in a size to fit your pump shaft…

    bob
    s/v Eolian
    Anacortes

    • I’m not aware if there is such a sleeve but the guys are going to try to build up the existing shaft and machine it.

      • These sleeves are worth looking into for the next time you have to deal with a leaking shaft seal. I’ve fixed worn shafts without removal and they ran leak free for a couple of years until sold. Heating the sleeve in the oven makes fitting a little easier.
        SKF makes speedi-sleeves from .4 – 8″. Other bearing manufacturers have similar products so I’d be surprised if there wasn’t one that would fit.

  7. Also, sometimes there is enough room to mount the seal so that it touches the shaft in a different location…

    bob

  8. I agree with Bob. There is no reason the shaft can’t be reworked if you need a local “now” solution. However, I do want to say that buying anew pump, installing it, and keeping the old reworked one as a spare raw water pump would be a crucial spare to bring for remote cruising.

    We got lucky and found an owner on the owners forum for our particular boat that has recently repowered. We asked him to unbolt EVERYTHING he could off of the old engine and ship it to us for a complete spares package. Lines, hoses, pumps, starter, you name it. It cost us a couple hundred bucks and has saved our bacon more than once. If there is a forum for your boat, post up and ask. 4-154 were also installed in some KP-44s (http://kp44.org/), or just keep an eye open to the local yards, some keep junked engine lying around.
    Good luck to you two!
    Wayne

  9. Mike – maybe you can get the current pump reworked at a machine shop this time. The shaft can be built up with welding and then spun on a lathe to bring it back down to tolerance. You also might try leaving the pump in place, removing the impeller, and splicing a strong 12V water pump into the raw water line – and that can do your salt water cooling for a limited time (this week). Also, I hate to rub salt into your wound but I did suggest to you on 10 September 2015 that you should endeavour to acquire and carry a spare pump and rebuilt kit. Raw water pump failures are very common on most marine diesel engines. I believe that is still good advice.

    • Hi Wade

      The shaft is being worked on this weekend as you suggest. The 12V pump idea may work too, I don’t know.

      As for the “I told you so,” there are many spares that I should have. I also should have one less boat and more money!!!!!

  10. I will second the Transatlantic Diesels (TAD) recommendation. Sherry has sent to Grenada an injector pump for the genset and found me a rebuilt oil cooler for my main that saved me some $$ over a new one.

  11. I am third in on the thumbs up for TransAtlantic Diesel. If you have the serial number of the engine you may be in luck. They have been a great source for my Perkins.

  12. Hi Mike
    I had a similar problem with my Jabsco water pump. I stripped the pump and removed the shaft and bearing. Had a machine shop press the bearing off the shaft. Had a new shaft machined out of new stainless steel 316. Pressed a new bearing onto the new shaft and reinstalled with new impellers and cams and reassembled. Not difficult or expensive and no waiting. No problems since. Good luck. Cheers Dave

  13. Most of the above comments are not very useful or relevant.

    I feel your pain, but don’t throw away your good old Perkins just yet. On Beatrix, we are in the same situation with the same pump and the same engine.

    Other than seas, bearings, and impellers THERE ARE NO PARTS OR REPLACEMENT PUMPS AVAILABLE ANYWHERE that I could find. Maybe on the top shelf of some marine supplier someplace….

    You will need a new stainless steel shaft manufactured by a machinist. We had this done in Tasmania for AUD350 which is cheaper than a new one, if you could find one, which you won’t.

    The mechanical seals and bearings are available from Depco Pump. If you can find a used pump from an old engine you can re-furbish that one, but it will make your life easier when it’s time to swap pumps again.

    We also modified the shaft and pulley so the end of the shaft is a 1/2″ thread. The pulley simply spins on to the shaft. This replaces the need for a Woodruff key. Note that DEPCO has spare pulleys; or you could make one up from standard parts. I can send you some photos if you write me directly.

    We just had one of our bronze shafts break and I am now going to have a new shaft machined, possibly this week, in Sydney Aus. If I do this it is no problem to have them make more than one. Please contact me by email or on Skype (Pacific_Voyager) if I can help.

    Cheers

    Jeff on s/v Beatrix

    • Hi Jeff. Thanks. You may have read that we replaced the original Jabsco with a Sherwood pump. It’s working great. Getting a new shaft made for the Jabsco so that we have a backup is on the list of things to spend money on.

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