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Old 04-06-2015, 12:37 PM   #1
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Perkins T6.354MGT only holds 6 quarts of oil

Hi,
I am hoping that another Californian owner can shed some light on my concerns. I have a 1979 Californian 34LRC with the twin 185hp Perkins. When I change the engine oil I only get about 6 quarts out of each engine, including filter change. I run them until they are hot, anchor, and then use the electric pumps plumbed through the drain plug to empty the oil. The oils at that point is thin and flows freely. The problem is that the manual calls for 10.8 quarts for these motors. Does anybody else out there have the same arrangement and same problem? Is it possible that the oil cooling circuit could hold over 4 quarts? I also wonder if the hash marks on my dipstick could be in the wrong place. The engines run great and have 50 and 62 psi at a 1550 cruise. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, John
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Old 04-06-2015, 01:48 PM   #2
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US vs Imperial? Litres? Are the engines tilted a lot?
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Old 04-06-2015, 02:02 PM   #3
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They are US quarts. The engines do not appear to have an excessive angle on them. Thanks, John
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Old 04-06-2015, 02:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweet marie View Post
They are US quarts. The engines do not appear to have an excessive angle on them. Thanks, John
I usually only get 8 quarts of oil per engine out of my 1976 6.354M's. There is always some oil left in the pan, oil cooler and piping. As long as you're changing oil on schedule, it shouldn't be a problem.

But you should keep this in mind. If your oil becomes contaminated with water or fuel (failed lift pump diaphragm). You will need to do a more exhaustive draining and flushing of the oil system.
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Old 04-06-2015, 03:59 PM   #5
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You are probably right about not worrying, after 35 years they are still running strong. Because I know I could never afford to re-power the boat it has made me paranoid when it comes to maintenance. I generally change the oil twice a year and put about 150 hours on them. I am hoping I can get another ten years out of them. I still hope that somebody with the same arrangement might be able to tell chime in. Thanks
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Old 04-08-2015, 01:35 PM   #6
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You can get more oil out

I had the same question a few years back on my ST3.544m 200 hp Perkins. On the Port side just aft of the dipstick there is a plug you can remove. Stick a hose in there to the lowest part of the sump and suck it out. If you do a search on the forum you will probably even find a picture of the plug location. The drain plug that they plumbed into your engine is somewhat higher than the lowest part of the sump.
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Old 04-08-2015, 01:43 PM   #7
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Forgot it is a plate and not a plug
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Old 04-08-2015, 01:45 PM   #8
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Plate, not plug

There is a small plate. Not a plug just aft of the dipstick.

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Old 04-08-2015, 01:56 PM   #9
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Thank you very much. I will look and see how much more I can extract. Where do you keep your Californian?
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Old 04-08-2015, 01:59 PM   #10
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We keep the Solace in Little Bay in Newington, NH
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Old 04-08-2015, 03:03 PM   #11
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On my stbd 4.236 Perkins (the 4 cyl version of your 6.354), I added a petcock and barbed nipple where I had a plug in the aft, port corner of the pan. It allows me to suck more oil out of the pan. I need to loosen the port engine rear mounts to be able to get the clearance do the same to the port engine. Just haven't felt the compelling need just yet. I'll tackle it next time the port shaft is disconnected.

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Old 04-08-2015, 06:50 PM   #12
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I suggest that you pay a visit to www.Boatdiesel.com. Lots good diesel people there that can supplement the info you can garner in this forum.
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Old 04-08-2015, 09:45 PM   #13
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What do you have for power?
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Old 04-09-2015, 12:08 AM   #14
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The T6354 on a previous boat had a permanently fitted hand pump next to the dipstick(see post 6&7). Worked a treat, easiest oil change extraction ever, a man would be a fool to himself and a burden unto others, not to take advantage of the provision.
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